Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Spaghetti Squash Adventures

spaghetti squash on katy's kitchen
1 c cooked squash= 42 calories!!!!
Who's this dork you might ask? Just me. Casually being a huge dork and getting really excited about food. After my summer of takeout (yes there were AWESOME meals that I blogged about, but there were many other meals that I didn't talk about for a reason) I vowed that when I got back into the kitchen I would try to be healthier. Fitness is already a priority of mine so I decided to make healthier meals that gave my body the energy and nutrients it needs. I joined a fitness group on campus called CHAARG which stands for "Changing Health, Attitudes, and Actions to Recreate Girls". It's all about finding new ways to do things better in all aspects of your life. Their motto of the month #AdjustEveryday ,which basically means setting new goals and trying new things to keep be healthier. My adjustment today was trying a new spin on my most popular dinner: pasta. 

I've heard a lot about spaghetti squash and was inspired by The Fit Cook's recipe. Kitchen Treaty has an awesome tutorial on it. Her pictures are way prettier than mine so if you actually want to make it, check out her blog. My pictures are to show that it can be done in a college kitchen :)

There are 2 ways to make to make spaghetti squash: in the microwave or in the oven. I chose the oven this time and was happy with the results, but it took a long time. I am definitely trying microwave next time.

Step 1: Cut through the stem then cut lengthwise through the squash. The skin is SO TOUGH. As you can see in the picture on the right, I tried three different knives before finally finagling the serrated bread knife through. Microwaving makes this easier. (Hope my roommate's knives are ok)
cutting the spaghetti squash
Step 2: Take out the pulp and seeds inside the squash. This is very similar to hollowing out a pumpkin. Next time I will definitely try out a recipe with the seeds :)
hollowing out the spaghetti squash
Step 3: I was making an Italian pasta dish so I used olive oil to coat, but you can also use butter. Also go ahead and make fun of me for having to use my hands, I cannot seem to find my little brush thing. 
prepping the spaghetti squash
Step 4: Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Lay flat side down on a baking pan. 
cooking the spaghetti squash
Step 5: Bake at 375 degrees until its easy for a fork to pierce it. My squash was small and was good after 45 minutes, but bigger ones could take upwards of an hour. 

baking the spaghetti squash
Step 6: Let cool for 10-15 minutes outside of oven. Once you can bear to touch it, turn it over and use a fork to brush along the inside. The squash will separate like spaghetti. 

finishing the spaghetti squash

I ended up making The Fit Cook's Turkey Bolognese to go along with it. It doesn't have the same exact taste as pasta, but it works well with basically any pasta sauces and meats. It's also a great filler in casseroles. It's the perfect alternative for when you want a warm meal that is low on calories and carbs. 

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