Thursday, January 8, 2009

Paleo Friendly: Spaghetti Squash with Spinach Walnut Pesto

My friend and co-worker Carol has been following the elimination aka caveman aka paleo(lithic) diet for close to a month now. Her original intentions were to see if she had any trigger foods, or allergies, that were affecting an ailment of hers, but ended up losing weight and feeling significantly better as well. I've been interested in the paleo diet for quite some time too (please note, this isn't a diet in the sense that people go on it to lose weight), as I was the one that suggested it to her. After being on the diet for two days she approached me and said "how did you do this!?" to which my reply was "well, I haven't actually done it. I just heard about it." But after a few days of getting over cravings, she's stated it's actually really simple to stick to. So, I think someday I may dabble in it and see how it makes me feel. I agree with the research and theory behind it.

In fact, I'm really interested in the topic, but don't have time to write a lengthy post on it now, so I will just post a paleo-friendly recipe that I whipped up the other day. I'm kind of obsessed with it actually, as it mimics a linguine with pesto without the refined carbs and dairy. And inspired by Carol's journey, I plan on going through my recipes and labeling those appropriate with a "paleo" tag.

Spaghetti Squash with Spinach Walnut Pesto (gluten-free, dairy-free, paleo)

1 cup of "meat" from spaghetti squash (to bake, cut in half, scrape out seeds and place on cookie sheet at 375 for 35 minutes rind side up and scrape out meat after squash has cooled)
1 loosely packed cup of spinach
1/4 cup walnuts
2 small, or one large clove of garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil

Mix the spinach, walnuts and garlic in a mini food processor until blended and add olive oil until a pesto forms (you may need more of less olive oil). In a skillet over medium heat, add the spaghetti squash and the pesto and cook for five minutes or so until the flavors are incorporated. Serve as a meal, or as a side dish.

I ate a completely paleo meal and didn't realize it until now! The meat is a turkey tenderloin with almond meal, cranberry and pecan stuffing (with some thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper -- though I don't know if that's paleo). I simply placed the "stuffing" on the flattened out tenderloin, wrapped, closed with toothpicks and baked for 25 minutes at 350. I think Henry's more interested in the turkey over the spaghetti squash.


Marlow said...

I love to see Henry casually staring in your pics!! Max is always in the background of my pics too!

Alisa said...

This is my favorite way to eat spaghetti squash .. too bad my husband isn't a big fan of pesto!

So cool that you play indoor soccer btw. I have played indoor and outdoor for over 25 years (sheesh, those years add up quick!), but had to quit permanently last year due to an injury ... I am still lamenting in case you can't tell, but will live vicariously through those of you who still play :)

Lauren said...

Oh my gosh, that looks divine! Spaghetti squash is amazing. This meal looks so healthy and low carb... added to my menu for this week. :) Great blog!

Liz said...

Aren't their noses amazing Marlow? Henry can sniff food from the second floor!

Alisa! Thanks for stopping by. You'll have to make yourself some pesto one night when you're alone. I'm worried about injuries myself, I feel I may be getting too old for the amount of contact I get in indoor.

Thanks Lauren! I love your blog too! Such great ideas.

Jenna said...

I'm with CrossFit On the River ( doing a 45 day strict paleo challenge. I know you made this over a year ago, but I just found it as I was looking for a recipe. I LOVED IT, and I only added basil leaves to the pesto mix. Just wanted to say thanks for posting it.

joeboe said...

I tried this tonight and really liked it. It was very quick and easy to make. I thought the home made pesto was a great touch. Thanks so much!

katty said...

The spinach have a lot of nutrition properties as not only provides energy and strength, plus they are light and don´t have a single gram of fat. So spinach can help us even to keep a good shape. And can help you even in your sexual performance for all vitamin that this plant contain. In some cases when you´ve tried everything,is better to buy viagra i have no complain about this product, just the opposite.

kara said...

i just made this tonight, the pesto was great, added a touch of lemon for a little bit of zing, made the recipe to 1.5 for 3 people, i served grilled chicken breasts on the side, would have added pine nuts if i had them, but delicious! thanks so much

Anonymous said...

What kind of dog is Henry? My daughter has an almost identical dog, except his ears sort of stick up/but hang cockeyed. is he sort of hyperactive/skittish? lol