On Top of Spaghetti

Baby it’s cold outside! When Jack Frost comes to visit, I love a warm bowl of pasta with a flavorful pomodoro sauce… but the carbs in traditional pasta do not always love me back! So in the spirit of being creative and adventurous with veggies, I decided to ditch the box of Barilla and try a healthier option.

Spaghetti squash is known as vegetable spaghetti, the flesh of cooked spaghetti squash resembles spaghetti strands and apart from its interesting looks and great taste, this vegetable is rich in vitamins and minerals.

Spaghetti squash contains omega-3 essential fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids which are good for preventing heart disease, cancer and inflammation caused by arthritis.  As a special perk, this squash is good for prostate health. It is also beneficial for people with insulin resistance as well as lowering blood pressure. But why stop there? This super veggie will help your kids with their A,B,C’s…it is a good source of vitamin A and vitamin C which are antioxidants and  it’s B vitamins will promote healthy cellular function. Now that is certainly a mouthful you will be thankful for!!

Cooking this squash is very easy; you can boil it, bake it or microwave it. Whatever may be the recipe, this squash can be very tasty and at the same time provide you with nutrients and health benefits. Once cooked, simply add your sauce of choice and enjoy.

Tip: Cook with your kids- ask kids if they know how to turn squash into spaghetti–excite them by creating the energy of magic or invention. The young ones in your life will be excited to try this new idea and even more anxious to eat their new creation (shhhh… just don’t remind them that it’s a veggie)

Cooking Instruction:

Cook the squash: There are three cooking methods:

1) Boiling water: soak the pumpkin in a large pot of boiling water and cook for 20 to 40 min. The squash is normally cooked when you can easily pierce it with a knife.

2) Oven: Cut squash in half, remove the central part with the seeds and place both halves in the oven for 40-50 mins.

3) In the microwave: pierce the squash, cook it intermittently for 10 minutes so not to burn it.
*Baking allows a better control of the tenderness, that’s why I prefer this method.

Preparation:

1) Preheat oven t0 375 degrees F.

2) Cut squash in half, remove the central part with a large spoon (discard this part).

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3) Lay the halves on a baking dish (cut side down). Cook for 40-50 minutes (when the filaments are detached, the squash is cooked).

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4) Remove the ”spaghetti” filaments with a fork and set aside in a serving dish.

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5) Season to taste with a drizzle olive oil, salt & pepper

6) Add your favorite sauce

VOILA!!

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Enjoy!

In health,
Johanna ~Reve

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Me So ~ Miso Happy

“As the days grow short, some faces grow long.  But not mine.  Every autumn, when the wind turns cold and darkness comes early, I am suddenly happy.  It’s time to start making soup again.” ~Leslie Newman

Soup makes me happy and Miso is delicious, pure and simple. It is a “super food” and used to reduce the risk of degenerative disease, contribute to overall health and add exceptional flavor and depth to food. Miso can be a potent medicine in the fight against a variety of Western ailments, in fact, I found 10 benefits to miso that I’d like to share with you:

The 10 scientifically researched benefits of eating miso
1. Contains all essential amino acids, making it a complete protein.
2. Stimulates the secretion of digestive fluids in the stomach.
3. Restores beneficial probiotics to the intestines.
4. Aids in the digestion and assimilation of other foods in the intestines.
5. Is a good vegetable-quality source of B vitamins (especially B12).
6. Strengthens the quality of blood and lymph fluid.
7. Reduces risk for breast, prostate, lung and colon cancers.
8. Protects against radiation due to dipilocolonic acid, an alkaloid that chelates heavy metals and discharges them from the body.
9. Strengthens the immune system and helps to lower LDL cholesterol.
10. High in antioxidants that protects against free radicals.

Miso has a wonderful sweet/salty flavor that can be used in a wide variety of recipes. The color of miso can vary from light yellow, good to use in a sweet miso soup during warm weather, to a deep dark brown with earthy tones and hearty flavor, which can be cooked with cubed root vegetables, wakame sea vegetable and dark leafy greens during the colder months. When cooking with miso use just enough to enhance flavor and avoid overpowering the dish with a strong salty taste.

Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-benefits-and-uses-for-miso.html#ixzz2Jss4bE00

Here is a great Miso soup recipe to help you embrace miso.

Warm up with this fast and easy miso noodle soup. It will be ready in 10 minutes!
Author: SpicieFoodie.com & Nancy Lopez-McHugh
Serves: 2
Ingredients

  • udon noodles (or rice noodles of choice)
  • 1 tbsp. red miso paste
  • 2 small individual packs of Shimaya – Dashinomoto (soup stock), or other broth of choice
  • 4 cups or 1 Lt. of water
  • small handful cut bok choy
  • chile flakes, optional
  • any vegetables of choice, thinly sliced or pre-cooked (I used scallions & shaved carrots)
  • cubed firm tofu (optional)

 

  1. Follow the package instructions for noodles. Once boiled and drained, rinse in cold water and set aside. (precooked noodles will reduce cooking time)
  2. While the noodles are boiling begin simmering the broth. In a large pot combine the Shimaya – Dashinomoto (soup stock) and 3.5 cups of water, bring to a soft boil. Add bok choy and any vegetables of choice and continue simmering.
  3. Combine the remaining water and miso paste until it breaks up completely. Once vegetables and noodles are cooked mix the miso into the pot
  4. Next add the noodles, and give the pot a good stir. Before serving sprinkle in some chili flakes if using.


Enjoy!

In health,
Johanna