Friday, April 16, 2010
Spaghetti and Meatballs with cabbage and spinach
This recipe reads pretty complicated but it's really not...there are just a few things going on at once, but that only means you get it done faster!
1 spaghetti squash (3-4 pounds)
1 lb. grass fed ground beef
1 Teaspoon dried onion flakes
Salt and Pepper
2 links of fully cooked, spicy italian sausage, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 Teaspoon coconut oil
1 medium onion, sliced thin
1 Tablespoon chopped garlic
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 Tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
2 small carrots, cut into 1/4 inch rounds
28 oz can of Trader Joes' Marinara Sauce-Organic
1-10oz bag of shredded cabbage from Trader Joes (or about 3 loose cups shredded cabbage)
3 loose cups fresh spinach leaves
1 Teaspoon chopped garlic
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Slice the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Place on a rimmed baking sheet, cut side down, and bake for about 45 minutes. After 45 minutes the outside of the skin should feel a bit soft.
While the squash is baking, mix the ground beef in a medium bowl along with a little salt and pepper, a few shakes of italian seasoning and the dried onion. Let that sit while you start the sauce.
In a large saute pan heat up 1 Tablespoon of olive oil and add the onion and garlic. Cook over medium heat until the onion begins to soften, about 4-5 minutes or so. Then add in the chopped basil, carrots and chopped sausage. Turn the heat to low and start working on the meatballs while you let the sausage do it's thang.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat with about 1 teaspoon of coconut oil. Take about 1 Tablespoon of ground meat at a time, and roll it into a ball in the palm of your hand, then place into the skillet. Continue with about half of the ground meat. Continue cooking over medium heat, turning over after about 3 minutes or so. Cook until completely cooked through, about 5-7 minutes total. You'll know they're done when you press on them gently and there is no "give". When the meatballs are cooked, remove them from the pan with a spoon and place them into the other skillet with the sausage and onions to keep warm. Keep the oil from the meat in the pan and continue rolling the other half of the meat into meatballs, cooking in the same fashion. Add the other half of the meatballs into the sausage pan when cooked through, and keep about 1 Tablespoon of grease in the meatball pan. To this pan, add in the shredded cabbage and remaining 1 Teaspoon garlic. Shake in some italian seasoning. Stir the cabbage and let it cook just until beginning to soften. At this point add in the fresh spinach and cook, stirring constantly just until some of the leaves begin to wilt. Look at the picture above....we're not cooking it to mush, just giving it some heat. Remove the veggies from the stove and set aside.
At this point the squash should be done. Remove from the oven and let it cool a few minutes. While it cools, pour 1/2 the can of marinara sauce into the pan with the sausage and meatballs and keep on low heat to warm it all up.
After the squash has cooled a few minutes, rake the spaghetti-like strands out with a fork and place into a strainer. Remove all of the flesh and let strain a minute or two. They don't tell you to do that on the little sticker with instructions that comes on the squash. Immediate FAIL for whomever's job it was to create that sticker!!!! A lot of liquid seeps out of the squash and if you don't strain it....you'll have squash sitting in a pool of water. Not a huge deal but not really what we're going for here....Once strained, place all of it on a plate, top with the meatballs and sauce, and serve the veggies along side. SO GOOD!!!!!!!!!!