Thursday, October 22, 2015

RECIPE: Spaghetti Squash Casserole with Spinach

PREP TIME10 mins
COOK TIME60 mins
TOTAL TIME1 hour 10 mins
Serves: 8
Difficulty Level: Moderate
·       1 medium spaghetti squash
·       1 tbsp organic butter
·       1 cup sweet onion, chopped
·       ½ cup red bell pepper, chopped
·       2-3 garlic cloves, minced
·       3 cups fresh baby spinach, chopped
·       ½ cup plain Greek yogurt
·       1 free range egg
·       1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
·       salt and pepper to taste
·       2 cups spaghetti sauce
·       ¾ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
·       ½ cup Parmesan cheese
·       ½ cup seasoned bread crumbs (or see notes to make your own)

1.     Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut squash in half length wise, remove all seeds and place on baking sheet face down. Bake for 40 minutes or until tender.
2.     Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat, add butter, onions, bell pepper, and minced garlic, saute for 4-5 minutes or until onions are translucent. Add chopped spinach and continue cooking another 2-3 minutes, or until spinach is cooked and wilted. Remove from heat.
3.     Once squash is cooked and cooled, use a fork to shred flesh into large bowl. At this point, increase oven temperature to 400 degrees.
4.     Add free-range egg, Greek yogurt, chili flakes and half of bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper and stir to combine.
5.     Pour 1 cup spaghetti sauce into 2 quart baking dish. Next, spoon spaghetti squash mixture over sauce and spread evenly. Then layer sautéed veggies over squash, stirring just slightly to combine it with squash, add another cup of spaghetti sauce, spread evenly then top with remaining bread crumbs, Parmesan and ¾ cup mozzarella cheese.
6.     Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until lightly browned.
7.     Top with additional red pepper flakes and Parmesan cheese if desired, then serve!

To make your own seasoned bread crumbs, toast one piece of bread until nice and crispy, allow to cool completely, then tear into smaller pieces and add to NutriBullet or food processor, add 1 tsp parsley, 1 tsp oregano, ½ tsp onion powder and ¼ tsp garlic powder. Blend 10-15 seconds or until you have fine crumbs.

Pasta with Tofu “Bolognese”
serves 8, a Fearless Homemaker original recipe
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks of celery, diced
3 garlic cloves, finely minced
kosher salt + black pepper
2 (14 oz.) packages extra-firm tofu
2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 (28 oz.) cans crushed tomatoes
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth (or chicken broth, if you’re not concerned with keeping this vegetarian)
12 oz. pasta, such as linguine or fettuccine
Parmesan cheese and Italian parsley, for serving

First, prepare the tofu. Press the tofu blocks between paper towels to remove as much moisture as possible. Then, using your hands, crumble into smaller pieces. Don’t worry about making them super small – you’ll crumble them further during the cooking process. Set crumbled tofu aside.
In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat, then add in the onion, carrots, and celery. Saute for 10-15 minutes, until onions are translucent and vegetables are softened. Add in the garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes, until garlic is fragrant. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Add the crumbled tofu and Italian seasoning to the pan and raise the heat to medium-high. Cook for about 30 minutes, breaking up the tofu into smaller pieces with a wooden spoon or spatula, stirring every 3-5 minutes. The tofu will gradually turn golden brown – be patient, as it takes some time! The less you fuss with it (especially in the first few minutes), the better the tofu will brown.
After about 30 minutes, once the tofu is broken down into ground meat-size pieces and golden brown, add the tomato paste. Saute for 3 minutes, stirring constantly to get everything well-combined. Then, add in the crushed tomatoes, bay leaves, red pepper, vegetable or chicken broth, and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the package directions, until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid, and drain pasta. Add the pasta to the skillet with the sauce and toss to combine well, adding some of the cooking liquid if needed to achieve your desired consistency.

Serve immediately, topped with freshly-grated Parmesan cheese and parsley.

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