Healthy Pasta and Alternatives

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During the winter, sometimes you cannot help but crave heavier dishes. Here at the Hart Center, pasta has been on our minds! If you are looking for a pasta replacement, or would like to try and make your classic pasta dish a bit healthier, look no further! Spiralizing veggies is one of our favorite ways to go when trying to replace your typical noodle. This week, we made butternut squash pasta, and a spiralized veggie pasta with our Spiralizer. Spiralizers are much more easy to come by in stores now. Look around for the best model for you! If you do not own a Spiralizer, Julienne peelers will create a much more straight but work just as well.

 Butternut Squash Pasta

1 Butternut Squash
Sage
Oil or butter of choice
Walnuts
Chicken or other protein

Cut the top neck portion of the butternut squash off. You can save the bottom portion of your butternut squash for roasting later on. Depending on the age of your butternut squash it may be slightly slimy or wet when cutting, make sure to have a towel on hand to wipe away excess moisture often.Remove the skin and stem very carefully. Create your noodles from your spiralizer or julienne peeler. Steam the noodles for 5-10 minutes until al-dente. Heat a pan to a medium-high heat. Toast the walnuts lightly then set aside. Heat some oil or butter up then throw in the chopped sage and the noodles. Plate with some protein on top. This dish is a great go to when trying to avoid gluten during the holidays.

Pumpkin Lasagna

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1 cup of pumpkin puree
1 egg
2 cups Ricotta Cheese
2 cups mozzarella, shredded
1/2 cup Parmasean, shredded
1 onion, chopped
4 Garlic cloves, crushed and chopped
1 pound Turkey Sausage
28 oz can chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup mixed Basil, Parsley, and Oregano (fresh or dried works)
Lasagna Noodles
1 Zucchini thinly sliced into “noodles”

Preheat Oven to 350 degrees. It is helpful to first assemble each layer. If your lasagna noodles are not meant for going straight into the oven, cook them first. Next, assemble the pumpkin layer. All you need to do is beat the egg lightly and then mix it into the pumpkin puree. Set aside 1 cup of mozzarella, and mix the remaining ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan and then set aside. Lastly, heat some oil in a pan. Throw in the onion and garlic and start to cook until fragrant. Put in the turkey sausage and herbs. After the sausage has been cooked through add in in the chopped tomatoes and herbs and allow to simmer.
All that is left is to assemble. Start with a layer of the turkey sausage sauce, this helps to keep moisture underneath the first layer of noodles. Layer on noodles then pumpkin mixture, then a layer of zucchini. Repeat this until the ingredients have all been used. Top the last layer off with more lasagna noodles. Take the reserved mozzarella and sprinkle on top.
Now its time to pop this in the oven for approximately 40 minutes. The top layer of cheese should get slightly browned and be bubbling. Allow the lasagna to rest before eating to have an easier time slicing and serving!

Spiralized Vegetable Pasta

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2 beet
1 Sweet Potato
Butternut Squash
1 Watermelon Radish
1 Zucchini
Garlic Powder
Sea Salt
Olive Oil (We used an infused one with rosemary and black pepper!)
Spices

Preheat the oven to 375. Spiralize all the ingredients. Place the spiraled veggies onto a sheet of parchment paper and place them in the oven for approximately 7 minutes. This helps to evenly soften all the veggies. Toss the spices and oil into a pan and then carefully transfer the veggies from the oven to the pan. Sauté for a few minutes and then serve!

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