Lately my struggle (because let’s be honest, that’s what it is) with meal planning has had an added challenge: my elimination diet. I’m 50 days into a 90-day plan in which I eliminate all the foods that came up positive on a food allergy blood test. So basically I’m only supposed to eat meat and vegetables. Awesome, right?
It actually is kind of awesome because it’s super healthy. But my children and my husband want bread and processed food! Cheese! Juice! Beer!
So dinners have been weird around here lately, unless I have more time to prepare them, in which case I can make one main dish and customize the sides to each person’s preference. That’s why I was more than ready to make this special Sunday dinner collection of recipes that works for my finicky family as part of a sponsored opportunity by Foodie.com (it’s like Pinterest, but it’s all about food).
From “Fix It and Forget It: Slow Cooker Teriyaki Chicken” by Desiree Eaglin
You can click right on the recipes in the slider above, or click through to the collection on Foodie come to see the info there. These are all recipes that satisfy (or look like they could) the people in my family in some way, and they are better prepared as part of our dinner on a day when there is more time. Like Sunday. Many of them came from the blogs of people I know, which makes it even more likely that they translate to actual yummy food in real life. Enjoy!
aka Spaghetti squash and turkey meat “cubes.” But that doesn’t sound as tasty, even though it is. Trust me. I have very high standards for how food tastes.
I’ve been experimenting with various foods so that I can have a protein and a vegetable in every meal, but no carbs or dairy or foods that might be allergens for me. Through trial and error, I came up with this very delicious mock-spaghetti-and-meatballs dish.
I prefer to bake my spaghetti squash, but this adorable YouTuber microwaves “this guy,” and her method makes the scooping of the seeds and string look a lot easier.
Whenever you make meatballs, or hamburger patties, or meatloaf, you need to go by your own personal taste. You can use another type of grain to firm up the mixture, but I used quinoa because that is the only grain I can have right now. And add whatever seasonings you like. I’m testing allergies for all of the usual suspects, so I made mine with simple seasonings.
I joked above that I also call these meat “cubes” because as long as I have been making meatballs, with whatever mixture, I have had trouble getting them to stay round. My Italian aunt’s tip is in the recipe below.
Spaghetti Squash and Turkey Meatballs
For the “spaghetti:”
1 spaghetti squash
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Cut spaghetti in half lengthwise
Scoop out strings and seeds and throw away
Place halves cut side down in baking dish with about a 1/2 in of water at the bottom
Bake for 20-25 minutes
Let cool for 5 minutes
Scrape the flesh out of the halves with a fork. It will come out in strings, like little noodles
For the meatballs:
1 package ground turkey
1/2 cup pureed cauliflower (optional)
1/2 cup diced onion
1 cup cooked quinoa
salt & pepper
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. You may have to use more or less of the quinoa to firm up your mixture. Using cupped hands (my aunt’s secret to round balls), roll into 1.5-inch balls and place on a plate.
Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a non-stick skillet. Make sure the pan is nice and hot.
Add the meatballs in one layer with plenty of room to turn. Brown on all sides. Test the insides – when the meat is no longer pink and all sides are browned, they’re done. Remove from pan and let them rest on two layers of paper towels to drain the oil.
Serve the meatballs over the spaghetti squash and top with your favorite sauce or salsa.
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I started a little vegetable garden and I want it to look like this, but I have no idea what I’m doing. Weekly updates here.