Spaghetti Squash Dinner

Let me just say that I love love pasta.  I have eaten it my whole life, from mac & cheese, to traditional spaghetti & simple pomodoro, to pasta with olive oil, garlic, parmesan & fresh parsley.  Really I’ll take it anyway I can.  So…when I found I could no longer eat gluten this was a major concern.

Well, thankfully, there is a replacement.  Plus it turns out that I’m more in love with the flavors than the actual pasta!  Now I use Spaghetti Squash in place of traditional pasta.  Yes, there are gluten free pasta replacements out there, but I try to stick to a whole food diet as much as possible.  Packaged pasta was made who knows when who knows where.  When you use spaghetti squash you’re using fresh whole foods loaded with nutrients to fuel your body & your health.

It can be a little intimidating the first time out. How do you cook this thing?  Well, there are two ways to go about it.  Some people say the easy way and some say the hard way.  However, I think the way that works for you is the right way!

Either way you preheat your oven to 350. Then you can put your whole spaghetti squash on a cookie sheet and bake it whole for about an hour and a half for an average size squash.  Then after it’s been cooked you can slice it in half length wise.  The other way is to slice it in half length wise first, scoop out the guts (see below), rub a little coconut oil on the flesh, sprinkle with pink salt & pepper, place it on a cookie sheet flesh side down and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Here’s the difference, really.  If you cook the squash first it is really easy to slice it in half.  If you slice it first, it is honestly hard to do, you need to put some muscle behind it.  However, if you slice it, it takes almost half the time to cook.  I say try both methods and use the one that works best for you.

Aside from the cooking this is how I make the very basic and simple pasta marinara.

Depending on which method you use to prepare the squash, you will need to scoop out the seeds. If you cut it in half to bake it, you’ll want to scoop out the seeds before baking.  Obviously, if you bake it whole, you’ll scoop them after you bake it and slice it open. Here is what it looks like on the inside.  I baked this one before I sliced it open.  Just a side note here, if you slice it open before you bake it, you can save the seeds inside.  It might be a great project for the kids to plant the seeds and grow your own spaghetti squash.  You can plant them now or save them for the spring.

This is very much like scooping out your pumpkins for Halloween!

 

The next step, after it’s been cooked, is to create your spaghetti.  It’s pretty hot out of the oven so I use two forks.  Hold with one and scrape with the other.  It is as simple as using a fork and scraping the flesh and the squash will create spaghetti for you. You can pretty much just keep scraping down to the skin.  One nice thing too is that if you don’t eat all of it, it can be reheated with ease.  Not like trying to reheat regular pasta where it becomes a mushy mess.

Then you just throw together your pasta sauce of choice.  You can use pesto, a simple pomodoro with tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, & basil or use a traditional red sauce.

I used a traditional red sauce.  I just cooked a bit of grass fed beef first then added the sauce.  If you use a premade sauce, try using one without all of the unnecessary ingredients like OrganicVille or Amy’s.  You can also load up your sauce with whatever veggies that you like or have on hand like zucchini, bell peppers, asparagus…whatever sounds good.

Just plate the squash, pour sauce on top and sprinkle with a little parmesan cheese and you have a soul nourishing “pasta” dish you’ll love!

Try it and let me know how you like it!

 

This entry was written by Dr. Shelly Masters , posted on Tuesday November 26 2013at 02:11 pm , filed under Recipes and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink . Post a comment below or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

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