Meatless Monday- Asian Inspired Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti squash is really one of the greatest vegetables on the planet. What is better than a VEGETABLE that tastes like PASTA?? Pretty much nothing is better. There are so many different ways to prepare it, from a straight up tomato-meat sauce, to a cheesy casserole (recipe coming soon), to this Asian inspired recipe I recently made, and many more.

As Laura Dolson points out, “…a cup of regular spaghetti has 40 grams of usable carbohydrate (and 220 calories), whereas a cup of spaghetti squash has only 8 grams of usable carb and 42 calories. Plus, that cup of spaghetti squash is much more “nutrient dense”, containing more of most vitamins and minerals than the spaghetti.” This is why I love it! Spaghetti squash is most easily found in the fall and early winter, but if you’re willing to pay a bit of a premium, you can find it most times of the year- the one I purchased for this recipe (a good sized squash) was a little under $6. Given that it’s a pleasant substitute from my dear friend, pasta, and that it’s so versatile, I don’t mind paying up for it!

Spaghetti squash is also like pasta in that it can be flavoured with whatever you want. So, feel free to alter the recipe below as you see fit. When I don’t follow a recipe, I often go with “bubbie style” measuring (a pinch of this, a dash of that), so when cooking the tofu (or any protein really- chicken and beef would work too if you’re not looking for a ‘meatless’ meal) I really just made it up as I went along. The truth is that you don’t even need the tofu here because of the edamame (green soybeans), but if you’re looking to mix up your protein intake, you can go halvsies and use both!

Sesame Spaghetti Squash

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1 large spaghetti squash, baked or microwaved
3 ½ tablespoons toasted sesame oil
5 tablespoons soy sauce
2 ½ tablespoons rice wine
1 ½ tablespoons of hoisin sauce
Pinch of ground ginger
Pinch of garlic powder
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
2 diced green onions
1/4  cup cooked & shelled edamame
1-3 tablespoons of either honey garlic sauce of teriyaki sauce or other sauce of your choosing
1 package firm tofu, cubed

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Put whole squash in a baking dish, or cut in half lengthwise (scoop out the seeds) and place face down on a baking sheet and bake about 40 minutes to one hour. Remove squash from oven and let cool about 10 minutes. Scrape the sides of the squash with a fork until you have removed all the stringy spaghetti, set aside. Alternatively, cut in half, scoop out seeds and then microwave in a microwave-safe dish with about an inch of water, cover loosely, and cook about 8-10 minutes. **NOTE: It does taste better baked, but if you’re in a hurry, the microwaving is a good alternative.
  2. To make the sauce, combine sesame oil, soy sauce, rice wine,  hoisin sauce, ginger, garlic powder and sesame seeds in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. In a wok or large fry pan, heat a small amount of oil, or heat a greased pan, and add in the cubed tofu. Cook until slightly browned, then flip over to brown the other sides. Add in the sauce of your choosing (I used a mix of teriyaki and honey garlic), and continue to cook until edges look slightly crispy.
  4. Add the spaghetti squash, edamame and green onions, and toss, along with the tofu, with the sesame sauce.

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