tiesandstilletos

Spaghetti Squash Spaghetti

In Kids, Recipes/Food on January 4, 2012 at 12:01 AM

While we’re in the “get your mind right, get your body right” month of January and everyone’s looking for those helpful hints to get your sexy back, we thought we’d share another great recipe that even your kids will love.  This is a great recipe for the winter, particularly because spaghetti squash is in season and is a little easier to find in your normal grocery stores rather than the need to run to Whole Foods.  Not that we don’t love Whole Foods but, well, ya’ll know what we mean. 😉

Anyway, this recipe treats the spaghetti squash just as if they were regular spaghetti noodles.  The difference is the calorie count is almost 5 times less than that of traditional pasta.  A cup of spaghetti squash has 42 calories in comparison with the 221 calories in pasta.  And, for those of you who are following Jennifer Hudson or Charles Barkley in weight watchers, that’s 0 points versus 5 points!  Big difference since we haven’t talked about the meat yet.

So, it’s simple.  Prepare your meat as you would normally do for your spaghetti meat sauce.  But, instead of pasta, we’re going to substitute in our spaghetti squash for a healthy, nutritious spin on an old Italian staple!

Ingredients:

▪                1 spaghetti squash, halved lengthwise and seeded
▪                Olive oil
▪                1/2 onion, chopped
▪                1 clove garlic, minced
▪                1 lb. ground turkey
▪                Parmesan cheese (preferably fresh from your deli.  However, Kraft® will do if that’s all you got!) 😉
▪                Tomato sauce/spaghetti sauce
▪                SPOG (always) (salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder)

Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 350 oF(175 oC).
    2. Line a pan with foil or you can lightly grease a baking sheet (clean up is just easier with foil liners).
    3. Cut the spaghetti squash in half and remove the seeds. You should have a VERY SHARP, preferably professional chef knife (*please see note below) to cut this squash.  Please be VERY careful in cutting.  Think: cutting a pumpkin in half.  Yes, it’s about that tough.  After cutting and cleaning, it should look like this:
    4. Brush olive oil onto the squash and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper
    5. Place the squash in the oven; face (cut side) down on the sheet.
    6. Bake for about 40-45 minutes or until a knife can be inserted fairly easily.
    7. While the squash is baking, prepare your meat sauce.
    8. Sautee your onion and garlic in the skillet with olive oil.
    9. Add your ground turkey and season with the SPOG.  Brown.
    10. Drain the meat and place back into your pan and onto the stove.
    11. Pour the tomato/spaghetti sauce over the meat.  Season with a little of the SPOG again as tomatoes can really absorb a lot of seasoning
    12. Your squash should be ready to be removed from the oven.  Pierce a sharp knife into the skin.  It should easily go in and out of the squash.
    13. Turn the squash over and take a fork and scoop out the strands.  The strands will resemble spaghetti noodles.  
    14. Place the “noodles” on a plate or in a bowl.
    15. Pour the meat sauce over the “noodles” , top with Parmesan cheese and serve.

(***NOTE:  If you DO NOT have a professional or even large, sharp knife, please do not try to kill yourself using a steak knife.  Instead, place the whole squash in the oven and pierce the skin several times with a fork.  You will bake this for about 45-60 minutes and it will be soft enough to cut with a more moderate knife.  The flavor will be mild and not as sweet.  So, this is also an alternative way for those who may want a milder flavor.)

You can toss the “noodles” with vegetables, various cheeses, herbs or all of the above.  Just treat the squash as if they were pasta noodles and Bon Appétit!

Our kids absolutely loved this dish and even went back for seconds.  The best thing was, it was a vegetable and they didn’t know it or care.  (We didn’t tell them that the “noodles” weren’t really “noodles” and they crushed it!)  The squash is very low in saturated fat and cholesterol.  It’s a great source of vitamin C and fiber.  And, it is also a good source of niacin, Vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, potassium and manganese.  Read more about the goodness of this food!

So, there you have it.  A great winter delight and a spin on an old staple and favorite that will please your taste buds without compromising that New Year’s resolution you promised you would at least keep for a week. 😉 Enjoy!

To find out more about using spaghetti squash as a pasta substitute and to find more recipes, please click here.

Nutritious and Delicious!  That’s What’s Up!

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