One of the biggest projects we worked on in our new home this year was our garden plot on the side of the house. I value the garden, and our entire yard, much more than I ever imagined, but foremost for its ability to bring a bit of sustainability to our lives (I’ll share more on this another day). With the Farm to Table movement on the rise (or maybe it was risen and then declined and now it’s heading back up?) I continue to be inspired to grow even a small contribution of our consumption on our very own plot of land. In true Farm to Table fashion, though, I created a meal that was a community contribution, and I hope to inspire you to try the same!
This recipe came about because someone I love has been facing a challenge lately that I can’t provide comfort or reprieve for. So I set out to handle my own stress and provide comfort to them in the best way I knew how – I started to cook with ingredients that were grown and produced love. I’m sharing this specific recipe with you because it meant a lot to me, but I would encourage you to tweak any recipes you love, and swap out local ingredients, an herb from your window box, or subbing a store bought option by making it from scratch.
These spaghetti squash boats are full of heart, soul, and (some) organic, locally grown ingredients.
- 1 spaghetti squash from my friend’s father’s garden in Saskatchewan
- 6 tomatoes, grown from seed in our living room
- 1 mason jar of roasted tomato sauce (made with tomatoes from our garden)
- ½ jar water
- 1 green pepper
- ½ yellow onion
- ¼ ground beef
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
- Slice the ends of the squash, slice in half length wise, and place seed side down on a baking sheet. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes or until squash is tender. The flesh should release from the sides and resemble spaghetti.
- In a pan, brown the ground beef. Add chopped onions and green pepper. Sautee until tender.
- Add the oregano, crushed garlic and a dash of salt and pepper.
- Add the roasted tomato sauce and half a jar of water to the mix. Cover and simmer for the remainder of the roasting time of the squash (low and slow to optimize flavor in the sauce!)
- Add the fresh diced tomatoes during the last 5 minutes of the cook time.
- Once the squash is tender, carefully scoop out the seeds. I hold the squash with a towel or oven mitt and use a soup spoon to scoop. Fluff up the squash with a fork to loosen the flesh.
- Scoop the sauce on top of the squash, ½ of the mixture in each. Enjoy!
For the Roasted Red Pepper Sauce (this recipe is and adaptation from my neighbor, Cindy!)
- 6 – 8 medium tomatoes
- ½ yellow onion
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 1 red pepper
- 1 tbsp oregano
- 1 tbsp thyme
- Olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Cut the tomatoes in half and place on a baking sheet (I put a non-stick sheet underneath)
- Quarter the onion and red pepper and place on the sheet.
- Smash the garlic and add to the sheet too.
- Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with the salt, pepper, and spices. I just do a rough measurement.
- Once the veggies are roasted and the onions are starting to brown, add to a blender and blend until smooth.
- Store in a mason jar in the fridge or freezer. If freezing, leave about ½ inch from the top, as the jar will crack if it’s filled to the brim.
Inspired by yard-grown ingredients, these recipes are also paleo, gluten free, dairy free, and Whole30 compliant. I’d add they are also delicious.
What do you love to grow in your window box, greenhouse, or back yard? What do you bring home from the farmer’s market? Share your favorite ingredient in the comments – I just may have an idea to cook up!