Spaghetti Squash with Eggplant and Sesame Seeds*
2 medium eggplant, left unpeeled, trimmed and cut lengthwise into 8 slices
3 teaspoons salt
1 medium-size spaghetti squash
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1/2 cup sesame seeds, lightly toasted
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the eggplant slices on paper towels and sprinkle with 2 teaspoons of salt. Set aside to drain.
Cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds and fibers. Place cut side down on a baking sheet and bake until tender, about 45 minutes. Scrape the squash flesh out with a fork and set aside.
Raise the oven temperature to 450 degrees. Pat the eggplant dry and brush on both sides with olive oil. Place on a large baking sheet (or divide between two) and bake until tender, about 15 minutes.
While the eggplant is baking, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Stir in the spaghetti squash and 1 teaspoon of salt and cook until heated through. Turn the heat very low.
Coat the eggplant slices on both sides with sesame seeds. Place a heaping teaspoon of the Parmesan cheese in the center of each slice.
Stir the remaining cheese into the squash. Divide squash among 4 plates and top with 2 eggplant slices.
*Adapted from the New York Times’ “Spaghetti Squash with Eggplant and sesame seeds”