>Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs

>The dinner feature is finally here! This week’s adventure was a brave one for me, because I am not a squash girl. However, I keep being reminded of its incredible health value…and I’m always aware of my need to eat more vegetables since I am very much not a natural vegetable-eater.

So when I hear about a squash that’s like spaghetti….say what? By george…let’s try it. So I bought a spaghetti squash, and it was sitting on my counter for about a week while I tried to figure out what to do with it. One morning at breakfast I was flipping through a Martha Stewart magazine, and voila! … Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs. Here’s the picture from the magazine. Doesn’t it look delicious??

I scanned the ingredient list and in my amazement…..have that, got that, have it, hmm. And then it dawned on me. I DON’T HAVE TO GO TO THE GROCERY STORE TO MAKE THIS! I already had every ingredient in the house. Which let me tell you ladies and gentleman, is a big plus for City-Dwelling-Meg. So, I committed. First things first, as usual, this is not my own recipe – you can find it in a nice and easy, printable form here. Everyone say “Thank you Martha Stewart and Whole Living magazine!”

1 spaghetti squash (about 3 pounds), halved lengthwise and insides scraped
coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
1/2 ounce grated Parmesan cheese
1 tbsp dried breadcrumbs
8 ounces lean ground turkey
8 ounces mixed mushrooms, such as shiitake, cremini, and oyster, cut 1/4 inch thick (about 3 cups) *I used baby bellas, but I’m sure any of these would be delicious*
1 cup homemade or store-bought low-sodium chicken broth
4 ounces baby spinach (about 5 cups), washed well

Maybe I’m a weirdo for actually having all these ingredients in the house, but I was pretttttty excited about it.

So, let’s get started.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Season cut sides of squash with 1/4 teaspoon salt. 

Bake, cut sides down, on a baking sheet until tender, about 45 minutes. Let stand until cool enough to handle. Scrape flesh into strands using a fork. Let drain, covered to keep warm, in a colander set over a bowl.

Mmm…baked squash!
Scrape scrape. This part is really easy. My strips didn’t turn out long and pretty
like in the pictures but who cares. It still tastes the same. πŸ™‚
Scrapings in the colander.
The remains – it comes amazingly clean.
Meanwhile, heat 1 teaspoon oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Cook onion and garlic, stirring, until soft but not brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Add oregano; cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Divide mixture between 2 bowls.

Chopped oregano from my window herb garden. Yum. πŸ™‚
Sooo I cooked it until it browned. It still tasted WONDERFUL.
Stir 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons cheese into 1 bowl of onion-garlic mixture. Mix in breadcrumbs, turkey, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper using your hands. Form mixture into 12 balls.

Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Brown meatballs, turning, 4 to 6 minutes; transfer to a plate. Add remaining teaspoon oil to skillet. Cook mushrooms, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper, adding a few tablespoons water if skillet browns too quickly, until soft and beginning to brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add remaining bowl of onion-garlic mixture, meatballs, and stock; bring to gentle simmer. Cook, partially covered, until meatballs are cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes. 

I just love mushrooms. πŸ™‚

Add spinach; cook until just wilted, about 1 minute.

Wilting spinach always fascinates me. It always seems like it won’t
fit in the bowl, and then sure enough, it cooks down in about 30 seconds.
Wilted down. Yum.
Divide squash and meatball mixture into 4 servings. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.  

Can be served without ….
… or with shredded Parmesan cheese. Yum!

Tricks of the Trade:
This recipe was surprisingly straightforward. You should be alright if you follow the directions! πŸ™‚ 

So, overall? Surprisingly delicious – I ate it in leftover form for lunch twice, and even Scott liked it! Incredibly healthy, and very very tasty. Make it – your taste buds will thank you!


3 thoughts on “>Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs

  1. >Totally worth the wait – and I AM a squash girl, so I'm absolutely making this next week. Josh thanks you in advance. Also, Kate – I always have a stash of ground turkey in the freezer now. Super healthy, yummy. Ground beef, who??

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