If you have a few leftover cans of pureed pumpkin from Thanksgiving, this is a great recipe to create a savory, warm dinner any night of the week. I came up with this recipe one evening when I was craving a creamy meat sauce, but didn't know what to add to the sauteed meat that was not tomato-based.
Since my autoimmune issues changed my food tolerances, I have not been able to tolerate nightshades, which are white potatoes, peppers, tomatoes, and eggplant. For those with the sensitivity, nightshades cause IBS, acid reflux and heartburn, joint pain, and gastrointestinal distress.
This simple sauce makes the perfect pairing on any kind of pasta. My family loves Jovial's line of brown rice pasta from Italy for its simplicity and similarity to the real thing. I still do not eat grains, so spaghetti squash is my vehicle for the sauce and I really love the way the flavors combine.
- Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Roast whole on a cookie sheet or in an oven-safe roasting pan, making sure to prick with a fork before placing in the oven for 50-60 minutes for a medium size squash. If you like a more al dente feel, try cooking it for 45 minutes. If it is still not cooked to your liking, it cooks well on the stove top in a nonstick pan (after following steps 3-6).
- Let it cool for 20 minutes.
- Using a sharp knife, cut the 2 ends off each side of the squash, then slice down the middle to reveal the inside.
- Use a large spoon to scoop out the seeds and discard them.
- Use a fork to separate the spaghetti-like strands of the squash. I put them in a glass container with a sprinkle of sea salt and drizzle of avocado oil to keep them from drying out.
- Follow the directions on the box for the best result. We like our pasta al dente, so we cook it usually a minute less than the box recommends.
- Drain the pasta, and do not rinse.
- Add a few tablespoons of avocado oil or olive oil to a bowl, then pour the pasta in and stir so all of it is covered with the oil to prevent pieces clumping together.
NO-TOMATO MEAT SAUCE
2 POUNDS 85% GRASS FED GROUND BEEF
2 15 OZ. CANS ORGANIC PUMPKIN PUREE
1 TSP ORGANIC DRIED OREGANO
1 TSP PINK HIMALAYAN SALT
2 TABLESPOONS COCONUT CREAM
1/4 CUP GHEE (OR BUTTER IF YOU CAN TOLERATE IT)
- Brown 2 pounds of pastured 85% ground beef on medium low so it retains the natural juices. Add salt to taste (about 1 teaspoon).
- Stir in 2 15 oz cans of organic pumpkin puree.
- Add 1 tablespoon of organic dried oregano.
- Add 2 tablespoons coconut cream and the ghee to make the sauce even more creamy.
- Let the sauce simmer for 15-20 minutes on very low, and start the pesto!
PESTO (DAIRY FREE, NUT FREE)
2 CUPS FRESH ORGANIC BASIL LEAVES
1 TSP PINK HIMALAYAN SALT
1 CUP EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
- In a blender, add 2 cups of fresh basil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 cup of extra virgin olive oil.
- Start by pulsing the mixture, then blend on high for 30 seconds, or until the basil is completely emulsified in the olive oil.
Our family craves Italian food so much since traditional pizza and pasta are not in rotation, and this savory pumpkin meat sauce is one way to fill the void. The way the meat sauce sticks to the pasta and tastes faintly of oregano, paired with the zing of a fresh basil pesto on a steaming bowl of "pasta", makes this hearty meal pure comfort food. I hope you give this non-traditional spin on an old favorite a try and let me know what you think! Share your recreations with hashtag #NMCFOOD.