I’d like to take a moment and share some of the things in my life that I am so thankful for.
My wonderful, healthy family, including all four of my grandparents who are still living. I am lucky enough to have lived close by to my entire family for most of my life and celebrate every holiday and special milestone with them, and I know I am truly fortunate for that.
My health and fitness. I don’t know what obstacles would have come my way if I had remained obese, but I like to think that I’ve erased most of those possibilities. Combined with my good genes (thanks again, family!) I see no significant health problems on my horizon.
And finally, a husband who likes veggies. All veggies. (Well, at least the ones I have served him.) It sounds a little crazy, but I am oh-so-glad I didn’t marry a picky meat-and-potatoes man. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, I just think it would be harder for me to cook meals that are both healthy and exciting enough to satisfy both of us.
When I saw this spaghetti squash gratin on Kalyn’s Kitchen, I couldn’t wait to try it. It stars one our current favorite vegetables, spaghetti squash (so incredibly sweet and flavorful right now at the height of its season), involves other ingredients I mostly have on hand, and gave me reason to buy some beautiful, hearty greens. And, it fit a new requirement in my kitchen: a dish that we could easily prep and eat for multiple meals (so important right now since I have some really, really long workouts!).
I used individual casserole dishes to make 6 servings of this. Two for one night, two for the next, and two for lunch portions. But of course, I needed some protein with my lunch. So I dumped those two portions back into the a bowl before baking, mixed in a can of tuna, and then back into the small dishes for baking. Like a tuna noodle casserole, without the noodles, but not missing anything yummy at all!
This was a really nice use of spaghetti squash to make a hearty, comforting side dish. We enjoyed it one night with tofu baked in tomato sauce and the next night with rosemary and garlic crusted lamb chops, so it’s very versatile too! And the addition of tuna made it a perfectly balanced and tasty lunch, too.
5 cups cooked spaghetti squash strands (775 g)
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp. Italian or Greek seasoning
1 large onion, diced small (200gm)2 tsp fresh thyme
fresh ground black pepper to taste
3 cloves minced garlic
12oz washed, chopped fresh kale
2 T finely chopped fresh chives or sliced green onion
1/2 cup light sour cream
3/4 cup low fat cottage cheese
3oz grated pecorino romano cheese
1 egg, beaten
Heat 1 T olive oil in a dutch oven over medium heat (you’ll need a large pan because the kale takes up a lot of space!). Add the chopped onions and cook for a few minutes, until softened. Add the garlic, thyme, salt and pepper, and cook one minute more. Add the kale, with water still clinging to it from washing, cover, and let it steam for a few minutes until slightly wilted (it will cook more when the casserole is baked).
Place the cottage cheese cottage cheese in a fine strainer and rinse with cold water until only the cheese curds remain, then let drain.
Spray a 9×13″ casserole dish, or 6 individual casserole dishes, with non-stick spray. Gently mix the chopped chives or green onion and shredded spaghetti squash into the kale mixture. Combine the sour cream, drained cottage cheese curds, about 2/3 of the pecorino romano, and beaten egg and mix into the spaghetti squash and kale. Transfer to the casserole dishes, and press down so it’s evenly distributed in the dish. Sprinkle the top with remaining pecorino romano cheese. Bake about 30-35 minutes, or until the mixture is bubbling and cheese is browned on top. Serve hot.
Servings Per Recipe: 6
Amount Per Serving
Total Fat: 10.0 g
Cholesterol: 58.3 mg
Sodium: 434.5 mg
Total Carbs: 20.8 g
Dietary Fiber: 3.2 g
Protein: 12.9 g