Weeknight meals are hectic. Between coming home from work, unwinding and trying to figure out what’s for dinner, I’m almost always famished. I’ve been known to munch on things that almost destroy my appetite for a full-fledged meal but if I know it’s going to be noodles or rice-related, I can hold off with eager anticipation of what’s to come.
Lately though, I’ve been straying away from using traditional noodles and cooking with spaghetti squash. For those on a low-carb diet (I’m not) but looking for a healthier alternative, this option contains omega-3 essential fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids along with a host of vitamins and minerals. Squash is healthy!
Spaghetti squash is easy to prep. The hardest part is splitting it in half prior to roasting. After the squash is roasted in the oven at 350 degrees F for 45 minutes and slightly cooled, use a fork to scrape the insides to form “noodles.”
Pair the squash with a hearty, tomato-based sauce, it’s a hefty meal that can last for several meals. My favorite sauce to pair with spaghetti squash is homemade bolognese made well in advance (usually a lazy Sunday), halved and frozen for future meals. While the spaghetti squash is equally good paired with other sauces, this recipe for Bolognese is equally good with traditional spaghetti noodles.
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 slices bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 large onion, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork
1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
2 carrots, shredded
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 (28 ounce) can plum tomatoes
6 ounces tomato sauce
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste
In a large skillet, warm oil over medium heat and saute bacon, onion and garlic until bacon is browned and crisp; set aside.
In large saucepan, brown beef and pork. Drain off excess fat. Stir in bacon mixture, mushrooms, carrots, celery, tomatoes, tomato sauce, wine, stock, basil, oregano, salt and pepper to saucepan. Cover, reduce heat and simmer one hour, stirring occasionally.
Salt and pepper to taste and serve hot over your choice of pasta.