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Primal Pasta Substitute?

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  • Primal Pasta Substitute?

    I'd like to make some primal pasta sauce tonight (with tomato paste, meat, and lots of veggies). Since, I'm not going to use pasta or bread, I'm looking for something that helps sop-up the sauce. I'm looking for something that doesn't take much effort to make, so hopefully some sliced veggies (or something equally easy to prepare) will do the trick. Any ideas?

  • #2
    Thinly sliced zucchini! If you have a mandoline then that's what I would do. I've been meaning to buy one for ages because I'd like to try that myself.


    • #3
      The other day I made just this sort of sauce but added an extra pound of ground beef cooked it long enough to get really thick and ate as is, lovely spinach salad on the side.
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      • #4
        Spaghetti squash is what I like for that...try it you might like it.


        • #5
          Sliced eggplant, sliced squash, sliced mushrooms and spaghetti squash work well. I make lasagna with eggplant and zucchini and it works well. I also make fake spaghetti with the sliced squash/mushrooms and/or spaghetti squash when I feel like it.
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          • #6
            Richard Blais did a wonderful sweet potato "noodle" on a food network show I saw a few months ago. I have often thought of trying it.

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            • #7
              Can someone explain to me how exactly you get "spaghetti squash?" Do you just buy squash, bake it, and scoop out the insides? Or is it a little more complicated than that?


              • #8
                It's a particular kind of squash that divides into strands when cooked. I only had it once, and the one I bought tasted enormously sweet and very strongly honey-flavoured. Would have been lovely for dessert, but as a base for meat sauce it was not a success. Maybe if you used to like maple syrup on bacon it's different...

                I've put pasta sauce on kale, broccoli, shredded courgette (=zucchini), or baked sweet potato. All good. Basically you either need something absorbent in itself (like the sweet potato) or fine enough to hold the liquid (like broccoli). Or a spoon.


                • #9
                  Has anyone ever tried sliced potatoes sauteed in oil? I use that all the time… But it is true the other choices are far superior,nutritionally. It's just easy and doesn't really have a flavor that can take from the sauce.
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                  • #10
                    Spaghetti squash or zucchini are your best options.

                    The squash you can bake or microwave, flavor wise someone mentioned they can be a bit sweet, I don't find it to be overpowering especially under a tomato based sauce (although I will say every squash seems to be slightly different). I usually toss it with a bit of butter before topping with sauce. Its simple to cook, google some methods and do what you like best.

                    For zucchini, I like to peel it, then using a potato peeler slice the zucchini into ribbons. I usually only peel down until the seeds, as the integrity seems to be lost if I try and peel beyond that. Cook in your sauce or steam for just a few minutes and wallah, you have something similar to egg noodles.

                    For another day, here is another way to turn your zucchini into pasta. I have this version and love it.
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                    • #11
                      We do this all the time at my house.

                      Spaghetti squash is super easy, just slice in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds (like a pumpkin) and bake, cut side down. 45 min at 325 should work. Then using a fork you simply scoop out the insides, which will be spaghetti like strands.

                      My wife has also been doing the zucchini method lately, using the julienne blade on our mandolin and giving them a quick hit in the saute pan with some butter and garlic. You could honestly skip this step, but it warms the 'noodles' and gives a chance to add extra flavor.

                      There is no reason to give up 'pasta' on primal!


                      • #12
                        spaghetti squash for spaghetti, mandoline sliced zucchini for lasagnas
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                        • #13
                          My vote goes to thin sliced zucchini. Cannot learn to love spaghetti squash.


                          • #14
                            I'd like to try taking some shrimp, or maybe some turkey, and chop it through a food processor with a little cream, spices, and "meat glue", then form it into gnocchi and boil then using a sauce like that on it. Would be interesting.
                            Last edited by davem; 08-28-2011, 12:29 PM.
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by demuralist View Post
                              The other day I made just this sort of sauce but added an extra pound of ground beef cooked it long enough to get really thick and ate as is, lovely spinach salad on the side.
                              +1. Life is just simpler when you finally give up on trying to "substitute" for grains.
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