Hi friend. I hope you had a beautiful weekend! We’ve been blessed with some unseasonably warm weather here in Saskatoon and I must admit it’s got me a bit thrown off. However, when the weather gets cooler, even if we haven’t dipped down to -40 yet, I like something hearty and warm to keep me going. Spaghetti squash is also in season and may latest and greatest obsession, so I thought why not share a recipe for an upgraded spaghetti sauce and low carb pasta?
Spaghetti was a staple dish at my grams’s house when we were kids. All of the cousins would get together in our finest 90s wear and scarf down boatloads of spaghetti and meat sauce with garlic bread. It’s one of the meals that stands out to me most from my childhood. Unfortunately, I’m now unable to partake of a regular spaghetti, but don’t find eating a bowl of sauce quite so satisfying… so what’s a girl to do? Enter the spaghetti squash, your new best friend.
We all know that we should be avoiding gluten and other refined grains for our gut health and blood sugar balance, so what’s a girl to eat when she wants pasta? Enter the beautiful spaghetti squash. I actually had never seen one of these guys until I moved to Saskatoon 6 years ago and then it took me another year or two until I tried one, but let me tell you, I am OBSESSED now.
They have a great texture and where most pasta is rather bland and just a vehicle for sauce, this “pasta” has a delicious flavour all its own that really rounds out a meal. I will often eat it as a side topped with nothing but a flavoured oil (lately it’s been a Spicy Camelina from Three Farmers) and some roasted garlic.
Now you may think that because most of the calories in spaghetti squash come from carbs, it’s going to spike our sugars and leave us puffy and inflamed. However, recent research has shown that the specific type of starch it contains, called pectin, help with blood sugar balance and have anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, and insulin regulating properties.
So ditch the processed garbage that leaves you with a spare tire, and roast up some spaghetti squash to go with this nutrient-packed spaghetti sauce. Cooked tomatoes and tomato paste are an incredible source of lycopene, which can be protective against testicular cancer. So make this sauce for the special someone in your life to show him how much you care.
But don’t worry, us ladies also get something from the lycopene! Preliminary studies are suggesting that this nutrient may help improve anti-oxidant status and bone health. Researchers are investigating it’s roll in preventing or managing osteoporosis.
Alrighty, without further ado, here is your recipe!
Soul Satisfying Tomato Sauce
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 white onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 lb. ground beef, chicken, or turkey or 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 tsp. oregano
- 1 tsp. sea salt
- 5 fresh (chopped) or 1 large jar of tomatoes
- 1 cup Portobello mushrooms, chopped
- 2 tbsp. tomato paste
- ½ tsp. cocoa
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tbsp. maple syrup
- 1 tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
- 1 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
- sea salt to taste
- Place a medium saucepan over medium heat.
- Add olive oil and onion to saucepan, stirring to combine. Cook until softened and translucent.
- Add garlic, ground meat, oregano, and sea salt and cook until mostly browned. You may want to drain some of the extra fat, if there is any.
- Add tomatoes to saucepan and reduce until softened.
- Add tomato paste, cocoa, and cinnamon to the pot and stir until combined.
- Let simmer 20 minutes (or longer!) then add maple syrup, basil, parsley, and sea salt.
- Cook another 5 minutes and serve with roasted spaghetti squash (see recipe below!)
Roasted Spaghetti Squash
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cut spaghetti squash in quarters, widthwise so you have 4 rounds.
- Coat w/ avocado oil, sea salt, and pepper.
- Place face down on baking sheet and roast for approximately 30 minutes or until skin is browned and puckered and a fork easily enters into the flesh of the squash.
- Remove from over and flip over, letting the squash cool for about 5-10 minutes otherwise you may burn yourself.
- Once cooled enough to touch, scrape out the inside with a fork, toss in olive oil and season with sea salt and pepper.
- Serve with tasty sauce of choice!
Well friends, that’s our deliciously homey and nourishing recipe for this week. If you want to make sure you never miss a recipe or fun event, sign up for my mailing list over on the right and get Nourished right in your inbox. One email a week, no spam, I promise 🙂