Yesterday marked Day 1 of my 21-Day Sugar Detox! I gotta say, I feel like I must have done something wrong. It was a breeze! The day started with a delicious breakfast of scrambled eggs, half an avocado and some fresh salsa. A cup of hot coffee with a little full-fat organic cream was on the side. Lunch was a smoothie made of under-ripe banana, the other half of avocado, a small spoonful of almond butter, a teaspoon or so of unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and some almond milk. It was a little toooo good. I double-checked the “yes” food list over and over again to make sure I wasn’t cheating on accident.
I was craving a hearty meatball dinner and a florentine style popped into my mind… served over spaghetti squash, of course. I’m still on that kick.
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1 pound chicken Italian sausage (I like Isernio’s brand in lieu of homemade)
- 1 cup chopped spinach
- 1/2 tsp lemon zest
- 1/4 cup flaxseed meal
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp Celtic sea salt (1/2 tsp for kosher)
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- pinch of red chili flakes
- 1 tsp Italian seasoning
- Extra virgin olive oil
If you are making the spaghetti squash to go with it, get it in the oven first. Then start to prep the meatballs. Directions for the squash are in the section below.
Combine all ingredients, except the olive oil, in a large bowl. Use your hand to mix thoroughly. As gooey as it is, there’s nothing better to make sure everything comes together.
Heat a large pan to medium-high, add in a fair amount of olive oil. There’s not much fat in these meatballs, so you’ll have to compensate for it in the pan. Because we are going to finish these in the oven, we only need to brown the outside of each meatball. On that note, if you aren’t making the spaghetti squash, be sure to have your oven preheated to 400 degrees.
Once the meatballs are browned on at least two sides, transfer them to a baking dish, cover and finish in the 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes. If the squash isn’t done yet, I just make it share oven space with the meatballs. I had enough time to cool and prep by squash by the time they were done.
With the squash, dinner took just under an hour to prepare. In the future, I’d like to see how these cook up in a Crock Pot as a time-saver.
If you’d like to make this with spaghetti squash in the style I made tonight, here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 spaghetti squash
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1/2 white or yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Fresh basil
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Open and clean the squash. Lay cut-side down in a non-stick roasting pan. When the oven is preheated, roast for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool cut-side up for a few minutes before harvesting the strands with a fork.
In the same pan that was used to brown the meatballs, toss in the thinly sliced onions and minced garlic at medium heat. You most likely will need to add a bit more oil to the pan too. When the onions and garlic have softened a bit and are taking on some color, add the stock. Bring to boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. We want the stock to concentrate a bit.
By this time the squash should be cool enough to handle. Add the “noodles” directly to the pan sauce and toss to coat… just like saucing linguini with a light clam sauce. A couple turns in the pan, evenly distributing the sauce and it’s ready. Plate with the meatballs, top with fresh basil.