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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Goat Cheese & Tomato "Pasta"

Goat Cheese & Tomato "Pasta"

Today's Tidbit:   So I'm calling today's post Goat Cheese & Tomato "Pasta" because well, there really isn't any pasta in it.  Instead I used my favorite pasta substitute:  Spaghetti Squash!  This is a super simple and fast recipe and is just as satisfying and filling as a regular pasta dish (only without the starch coma afterwards!) and a lot less calories!

1 cup of cooked Spaghetti = 221 calories
1 cup of Spaghetti Squash = 31 calories!

To me this sub is a no brainer, and again is just as yummy and filling!   Here is the recipe:

Goat Cheese & Tomato "Pasta"

Goat Cheese & Tomato "Pasta" Recipe:

1 Medium Spaghetti Squash
2 tbsp EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil), separated
1/2 Red Onion, thinly sliced
2 Large Cloves of Garlic, chopped
Red Pepper Flake, to taste, depending on how spicy you like it
1 pint Cherry or Grape Tomatoes
1 can White Cannellini Beans, drained & rinsed
Arugula (as many handfuls as you want!)
Goat Cheese

Clean off Spaghetti Squash and poke all over with a sharp knife.  Microwave for 6 minutes, turn and do another 6 minutes.  Let it sit for a couple minutes to cool down.  Then feel with your hands for softness - if it isn't soft, do a few more minutes.  When you are able to handle it (it gets really hot, so I typically will do this as much as an hour in advance!) cut off the ends, and then cut in half lengthwise.  Scoop out the seeds and then holding it up in one hand, over a large bowl or plate, take a fork and scrape down the sides of the squash, allowing the spaghetti-like strands to fall out.  Set aside.

In a large Dutch Oven (or heavy saucepan) heat 1 tbsp EVOO and then add the Red Onion.  Give it a couple minutes to soften and then add the Garlic and the Red Pepper Flake.  When fragrant (a minute or two) add the Tomatoes, lower heat and cover and allow to simmer for 10 minutes until the Tomatoes begin to pop and let out their juices.  It should be smelling amazing already!  Add the Beans, the Squash and another tbsp of EVOO and then cover to heat through, a couple more minutes.  Turn off heat, throw the Arugula on top and then cover again for a couple more minutes, allowing the Arugula to wilt a little.  Serve and top with Goat Cheese.  YUM.

This is a great Fall/ Winter meal because it feels so hearty and is so delicious and satisfying, yet again, providing a lot less calories and simple carbs then pasta.

Here are some links to other dishes I have enjoyed using Spaghetti Squash:

Spinach, Goat Cheese & Almond Spaghetti Squash 
Spaghetti Squash Enchilada
Spaghetti Squash Puttanesca
Spaghetti Squash Pesto with Chicken, Beans & Bacon
Spaghetti Squash with Garlic Shrimp & Capers

The Story of What Amy Ate Today:
Last year I created the What Amy Ate Today blog to share my personal story of losing over 40 pounds by making simple healthy changes to the way I was eating.  I wanted to show the real life picture of what my daily food choices looked like by simply posting every single thing that I ate every single day; which I did for 9 straight months!   

It all started on May 1, 2012, check out a sample post here:  
One Day Last July...
I wanted to show that it is possible to lose weight and be healthy without being on a diet and without starving or depriving yourself of anything.  I make healthy choices whenever I can, but I am a normal person living a real life and I want to enjoy it, so I indulge in special treats regularly too.   
It has been a great journey for me, further motivating me to seek out new foods, new recipes and new ways to prepare and eat more healthily and get more Vitamins and Nutrients (and Energy!)  into my day.   I look forward to continuing this journey by highlighting special recipes, new foods and/ or preparations that I discover or create, alongside any helpful Health information or news that I come across through the above "Today's Tidbit".  Thanks for joining me on my journey to better health and better living!