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A Nutritious Twist on Spaghetti

10 Jan

Spaghetti is a staple in our diet. Whenever I am not sure what to make for dinner or don’t really feel like cooking, we make spaghetti. There is nothing easier than boiling some whole wheat noodles, warming up some red sauce, mixing it all together, and topping it with Parmesan cheese.

This week I wanted to try something different with the spaghetti. While I was at my Diabetes Center rotation during my dietetic internship one of the RDs talked about how she had made spaghetti squash for her family and they loved it (even the picky ones)! I have always wanted to try it but never got around to it.

Spaghetti squash is a large, oblong squash that is loaded with B Vitamins, Vitamin C, and Fiber. It is called spaghetti squash because when it is cooked, the flesh comes out in long strands that resemble spaghetti noodles.  I was  a little hesitant for the first bite…what would it taste like? Surprisingly, it doesn’t really taste like anything. The texture is similar to spaghetti noodles that are cooked el dante (which is how I like them anyway). Next time I plan to bake the squash a little longer, because the “noodles” were a little firmer than we wanted.

One squash makes almost a whole gallon bag, so there is plenty for left overs. We froze a lot of it, hoping the freezing and thawing process would soften them up a little. If your squash comes out firm, you could also steam them or microwave them with a little water if you wanted to try to cook them longer. I’ll post an update on what freezing does to the squash.

Spaghetti Marinara

Ingredients
– 1 large spaghetti squash, washed and sliced lengthwise and seeded
– Homemade or canned spaghetti sauce
– Parmesan Cheese
– Vegetables of your choice (I really love how peas add a little pop to the mixture)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. Place the squash cut side down in a baking dish and bake for 30-40 minutes.
  3. Pull a fork across the flesh of the squash. The strands should easily peel away from the squash. If not, bake for 5-10 minutes longer. Let cool (so it is easy to handle) before scraping out all of the squash.
  4. Prepare any sauce and vegetables you plan to use.
  5. Top squash with sauce, vegetables, and cheese. Enjoy!
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Posted by on January 10, 2010 in Vegetarian

 

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