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Spaghetti Squash Bolognese With Turkey

IMG_9050.jpgSometimes eating healthy can get mighty boring. I've gotten into a pattern of making the same things over and over again because my time during the week is limited. This weekend I took a trip to Wegman's and came across some lovely spaghetti squashes that happen to be on sale.  While I've never cooked with it before, I've definitely eaten it enough times to figure out what flavors would go well with this gourd. Obviously italian came to mind first since I know it sometimes replaces pasta.

My was I surprised by this creation, this spaghetti squash bolognese! It did take a little bit of time because the squash has to roast before you can stuff it with the good stuff, but it's really easy to make and it's worth the wait. The only thing I would choose to do different next time is to use shredded mozzarella cheese instead of slices from a ball. I needed to get rid of what I had in the fridge, so I took a chance. Tasted good, but didn't melt as evenly as I would have liked! 

Here's what you need:

  • 1 medium spaghetti squash (1 - 1.5 lbs)
  • 8 oz ground turkey
  • 4oz shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
  • 2 oz shredded parmesan cheese
  • 2 1/2 cups tomato sauce (my favorite cheat sauce is Rao's - only a handful of ingredients and low sugar!)
  • 2 tbsp light cream
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper 
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • Skillet or saute pan
  • Medium sized mixing bowl

Here's what you need to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds and unwanted pulp.
  2. Using pastry brush take 1/2 tbsp of olive oil and brush open faces of the squash, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put on tray and roast pulp side down for 35-40 mins
  3. While squash is roasting, make a quick meat sauce. Add 1 tbsp olive oil to saute pan and add ground turkey, simmer for 5 minutes, forcing meat to crumble with spatula. Add onion powder, cayenne pepper, garlic, some black pepper and salt to the meat and stir, simmer another minute.
  4. Add 1 cup of sauce, mixing ground turkey in well and let simmer on low for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Repeat for the 2nd cup of sauce and simmer covered for 10 minutes. Remove meat sauce from heat and stir in light cream, set aside to let cool.
  5. Remove squash from oven and use a fork pull out spaghetti squash strands, put into mixing bowl. Sprinkle 1 oz of parmesan cheese, a pinch of salt, a pinch of pepper and the remaining 1/2 tbsp of olive oil. Mix together well in the bowl.
  6. Up the heat of th oven to 400 degrees F.
  7. Begin layering the ingredients in each half like lasagna: meat sauce, "spaghetti", mozzeralla cheese. Complete as many times as can fit. (2 seemed to work for me, but probably could have done 3). Top mixture with remaining parmesan cheese.
  8. Put back into the oven and roast at 400 F for another 10 minutes, then broil on high for 3-5 minutes until bubbly and brown (watch closely so you don't burn the top!)
  9. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

ashley_gelineau_turkey_bolognese.jpg                spaghetti squash bolognese with turkey

 

Makes 2 servings.

Viola! You have a fairly healthy and delicious masterpiece that I found to be very filling for dinner :) For those who have made spaghetti squash before, how else have you cooked it?

That's all for now. :) 

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