The spaghetti squash is pretty straight forward as far as cooking, the homemade marinara recipe I sort of made up as I went along based on other recipes I'd read recently, and the cheese biscuits I followed to a "t" from the cookbook, Cook Yourself Thin Faster, because I am a terrible baker. After burning tear-apart-cookies on numerous occasions, and having a hard time following instructions, I tend to stick to what works: cooking to my own tune. So here we go!
1 large spaghetti squash (yep, that's really what they're called in the grocery store!)
Sea salt and cracked pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut the squash in half lengthwise (you might need
Season the inside with salt and pepper, then place the squash face down on a large baking sheet and place in oven for about 45 minutes or until the rind is softened a bit and gives in with pressure.
Once it's ready, remove from oven and, using a fork, scrape the soft flesh out of the squash. It immediately peels in strings, just like spaghetti! Amazing!
Homemade Marinara Sauce
10-12 medium tomatoes, quartered
Sea salt & ground pepper
2 tbsp basil (fresh or dried)
1 tbsp dry oregano
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2-3 tbsp minced garlic (I use the bottled stuff)
1 red bell pepper, chopped into large pieces
1 tbsp sugar
As soon as the squash gets in the oven, you might want to add the tomatoes as well since they cook at the same temp for about 30-35 minutes. To prepare your sauce, place the quartered tomatoes and chopped bell pepper into a square baking dish and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle on your basil, salt and pepper and place in the oven until the veggies are softened and some of the edges are just beginning to brown, about 30-35 minutes.
Once they are ready, remove from the oven and place into a large food processor. Add all remaining ingredients and process until smooth. Remove to a bowl and cover to keep warm.
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tbsp baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup reduced-fat cream cheese, cut into small pieces
1 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 ounces low-fat pepper jack or cheddar cheese, grated
1 cup reduced-fat buttermilk
Preheat oven to 400. In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and pulse to combine. Add the cream cheese and butter and pulse until the dough starts producing small lumps at the top of the mixture. ***Do not over "pulse" to where it gets doughy, or it won't absorb the buttermilk!!!***
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and gently stir in the cheese and buttermilk, using a fork. The less you handle, the lighter the biscuit.
Form the dough into a ball, place on a lightly floured surface and smooth in a 1/2 inch-high round, then cut out rounds with a biscuit cutter and place on sheet. ***For folks who find this tedious, or are not avid bakers like myself, I just dug in and scooped out small mounds of the batter and put them smack on the cookie sheet. I do not need a perfectly shaped biscuit!***
Bake until the tops are lightly browned, 10-15 minutes.
And there you have it, a completely homemade, from scratch, delicious and healthy dinner!