Spaghetti Squash – A delicious “pasta” dish with no guilt…no kidding!

spaghetti squash dishI love squash; butternut, acorn, pumpkin, I could go on and on.  But, spaghetti squash is really unique in its texture, it’s simple to cook and a plate of it the size of your head is under 100 calories.  Like the name suggests, it is a good substitute for spaghetti because it contains fibers that, once cooked, easily separate to form spaghetti-like strands.  I like it served simple with some butter, parmesan cheese and crushed red pepper; kind of like a pasta aglio olio.  I’ve also made it into “potato pancakes.”

The cooking method I prefer is to bake it in the oven.  I cut the squash in half length-wise and remove the seeds.  I use a melon baller to remove the seeds.  It’s a tough little tool and really scoops out the seeds easily leaving a  nice smooth surface on the squash.

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I then place the squash, cut side down into a large glass baking dish.  Fill the pan with water to about 1/4- 1/2 inch in height.  You don’t want too much water as it will make the squash wet and watery.

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Bake at 400 degrees for 25-35 minutes until it is fork tender from the skin down.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool.  With a large fork, scoop out the flesh of the squash.Spaghetti.Squash.plate

Here I have made a simple sauce to serve over the spaghetti squash.

Ingredients:

4 turkey sausages, casings removed

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 can of diced tomatoes, undrained

1 can of tomato sauce

2-3 Tablespoons of tomato paste

1 jar of gigante beans in tomato sauce – I picked these beans up at Trader Joes because they looked cool.  They really are gigantic (which explains the name “gigante”) white beans with a mild, almost buttery flavor.  They gave some nice texture to the sauce and took on the flavor of the sauce nicely.

olives, sliced

Directions:

Drizzle a bit of olive oil into a skillet; 2 full turns around the pan.  Sautee the onion and turkey sausage until the sausage is browned and fully cooked.  Add the garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes more.  Add the remaining ingredients and cook until all of the ingredients are heated through.  Stir in the tomato paste to thicken the sauce to desired consistency.  Serve over a plate of the spaghetti squash. Garnish with the sliced olives.

Note:

Sometimes I mix some whole grain angel hair pasta in with the spaghetti squash to really make it feel like a pasta dish and it is really delicious.

 

 

 

 

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