Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spaghetti Squash Italiano (Vegan, Vegetarian or regular~your choice)

1 medium to large Spaghetti Squash
1 large onion minced
5 to 8 cloves of garlic minced
1 cup of chopped basil (fresh)
1 cup chopper italian parsley (fresh)
1/4 cup chopped oregano (fresh)
2 tbsp. Fennel Seed
2 Bay leaves
Pink Himalayan Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
2 boxes of Button Mushrooms clean and sliced (or mix with Cremini and Portabella)
1 box of Vegan Meatless ground beef (or substitute for reg. 1lb of lean ground beef)
1 regular size jar of Prego (or other) spaghetti sauce (I used Basil and garlic)
1 1/2 cups of Vegan Parmesan Cheese divided into three 1/2 cups (you can substitute for reg. Grated Parmesan & Romano Cheese Mix)
Optional ~1 cup of Mozzarella or 4 slices of Provolone as a topper. 

Preheat oven to 375. Wash and brush the Squash and carefully cut in half (longways). Remove the center (only the seeds). Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and place on a cookie sheet face up.
Put in the oven and let it cook for 35 minutes. Pull them out and turn them face down (careful very hot. Use forks or a kitchen towel). Cook them again for 35 to 45 minutes. The whole idea is that the inside is cooked and ready for your spaghetti mix. The squash should be tender and when using a fork, it should shred like spaghetti noodles.
While these cook, spray a little Pam in a pan and add the onions, a little salt and pepper and sauté on medium heat until translucent or brown. Add the garlic, mushrooms and all the herbs and spices. Sauté for about 5 to 7 minutes and add your meatless meat (or what you choose). Cook for about 10 minutes turning and making sure it doesn’t burn (medium heat). Add the jar of Spaghetti sauce and mix well. Allow it to simmer (on low) while you follow the next step.
By now, your squash should be fully cooked. With a spoon, empty the cavity of each half and added to your sauce and mix well. Add 1/2 cup of the parmesan mix and 1 cup of shredded Mozzarella (optional) and incorporate into your sauce or fill.
NOTE: Don’t empty the squash so much that the shell becomes week. You want it to have shape so it can hold the mix when you place it in the oven again for the final step.
Fill each half of the squash with your mix and top with remaining cheeses.
Place back in the oven for 35 minutes (@375) or until topping is melted.
Serve like you would spaghetti. Maybe with some garlic bread and a nice Tomato & Basil salad?
Very low in calories and carbs, no cholesterol and tons of flavor.