I consider is a huge victory when a vegetable can replace a high carb item like pasta. The next addition to the Whitaker kitchen will hopefully be a spiralizer to make yummy zucchini noodles! But until that day, my healthier noodle replacement will always be spaghetti squash. Typically when my sweet Grandma Taylor shares her squash crop with us, the go-to recipe is simply spaghetti with meat sauce. Although this time, I wanted to change up the game. Poppa absolutely loves bacon carbonara, so I opted to try a lighter version for post-Fall Festival(*) weight loss. Or at least as healthy as I am capable of cooking…
*The Westside Nut Club Fall Festival is one of the largest street festivals in the country that takes place in my hometown of Evansville, Indiana. Hundreds of booths line Franklin Street during the first week of October and serve anything you can imagine fried. Deep fried cookie dough, fried mac and cheese, fried Klondike bars, fried Oreos, and fried Kool-Aid are only a few items to choose from at this legendary festival. As a lover of all things cajun, I always head straight to the German Township booth where they serve the Feed Mill’s Crawfish Étouffée.
- 1 large spaghetti squash (about 2 lbs.)
- extra virgin olive oil
- Nature’s Seasoning
- 2 chicken breasts, cooked and chopped
- 8 slices turkey bacon
- 2 tsp. minced garlic
- 2 egg yolks and 1 whole egg
- 1/4 c. low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 c. parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp. garlic salt
- 2 c. shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
- Roasted Spaghetti Squash: Preheat oven to 375 °F. Slice squash in half lengthwise (this could be difficult and dangerous, use caution), scoop out and discard the seeds and darker colored innards. Lightly drizzle extra virgin olive oil over the inside of squash. Dust liberally with Nature’s Seasoning. Place opening side down on a high-sided baking pan. Bake for approximately 45 minutes until the squash peels away into soft strands (noodles). Shred and place into a colander to drain extra liquid while the sauce is being made.
- In a large stew pot, over medium heat, cook the bacon in a tablespoon of olive oil until it becomes crispy (which isn’t very “crisp” for low-fat turkey bacon). Add the minced garlic. Sauté for 1 minute. Add the broth and cook until the liquid has completely evaporated. Remove from heat.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs together with the cheese. Season with garlic salt. Combine the eggs with the bacon mixture in the pan that has slightly cooled (do not let the eggs cook through). Add the drained spaghetti squash and toss to thoroughly combine.
- Pour into a greased glass baking dish and top with shredded mozzarella cheese. Bump oven heat up to 400* and bake until cheese becomes bubbly and slightly brown, approximately 10-15 minutes (this also allows the eggs to cook).
Yields approximately 6 servings.