Are you gluten-free or looking for a low-carb alternative to regular spaghetti alla Norma? I got you covered with this recipe! Here, I twist this classic recipe. Indeed, we are not using regular spaghetti but spaghetti squash. Why is it called spaghetti squash, you may wonder? Simply because the squash’s flesh shreds into long strands looking like spaghetti once cooked, making it the perfect gluten-free option to pasta!
Pasta alla What???
First, let’s dive into the history of the dish. What is spaghetti alla norma? Spaghetti alla Norma is a pasta dish from Catania in Sicily, Italy, made with pasta, tomato sauce, roasted eggplants, fresh basil, and ricotta. This recipe screams summer in Southern Italy! But where does the name of the dish come from? It stems from the 19th-century Italian opera composer Vincenzo Bellini’s opera Norma. The legend says that his friends were impressed by his opera and by the pasta dish they were eating named the pasta “alla Norma.”
What are the benefits of spaghetti squash?
Spaghetti squash is rich in fibers, vitamin C, B6, and betacarotene. Fibers help take care of your digestive tract and make you feel full for longer, while vitamins C and B6 boost your immune system. Moreover, spaghetti squash is low in calories which is an excellent alternative to pasta and great for weight management.
Is Spaghetti Squash a “good” carb?
Spaghetti squash is low in calories, with a cup worth 42 calories and containing 10 grams of carbs. In comparison, the same amount of regular spaghetti is worth 210 calories and has 42g of carbs. Hence, if you are following a low-carb diet, are trying to lose weight, or simply include more vegetables on your plate, spaghetti squash is a winner!
How to cook spaghetti squash like a chef?
Now you are going to tell me: “Great Dan, you tell me that spaghetti squash is great, but how do I cook it?” It is an easy process! Preheat your oven to 400F (205C). Cut your squash in half, scoop out the seeds, drizzle olive oil on the squash and sprinkle salt. Place the squash face down on a tray and roast for 45 to 50 minutes. Once cooked, let it cool for 5 minutes. Using a fork, scrape out the flesh of the squash. Long spaghetti-like strands will form.
- 1 spaghetti squash
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in halves
- 1 eggplant, chopped
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tbsp dried oregano,
- 1tsp chili flakes
- 1 tbsp fresh basil
- 2 tbsp grated cheese (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400F (205C).
- Cut the squash in half. Scoop out and discard the seeds.
- Brush olive oil on both halves. Place the squash face down on a baking tray. Put in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until cooked.
- Slice the eggplant. Brush olive oil, sprinkle salt and place the eggplant on a baking tray. Put in the oven for 10-15 minutes.
- In a saucepan on medium-high heat, heat olive oil, add garlic, chili flakes, oregano, salt, and pepper. Stir for 2 minutes. Add the diced tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, and roasted eggplants.
- Once the spaghetti squash and eggplant are cooked, using a fork scrape out the flesh of the squash. Toss it in a bowl. Add the sauce. Mix.
- Serve with basil and grated cheese (optional).
cals: 460 • fat: 23g • protein: 7.8g • carbs: 65.2g