I remember when I was a kid, I used to sleep over at my grandmas house where she would feed me the most amazing homemade food. My ultimate favourite were her delicious juicy Italian meatballs and her homemade yogurt. I always loved eating her meatballs and spaghetti every time I went to see her. I don’t know why, but I’ve been craving those meatballs for quite some time now, maybe because I haven’t been home in nearly two years, but I really felt like making my grandmas meatballs. Obviously her Italian meatballs are made with breadcrumbs and dairy, so I thought of sharing my PCOS-friendly version of her recipe! These are my ultimate favourite meatballs as they come out so juicy and creamy as if cheese or milk had been added. Baking them in the oven ensures that they retain their juice and flavours.
I always ate these delicious meatballs in a delicious tomato sauce accompanied with fresh linguine, but ever since I started my PCOS diet, I haven’t eaten any wheat pasta. This is why I decided to make this dish using an extra-large spaghetti squash that I had bought. Squashes, apart from the kabocha, aren’t sold in supermarkets in Japan. Unless you live in the countryside and have access to farmers, you aren’t likely to find spaghetti or any other kind of squash and pumpkins. I had to buy these online at about 10$ each! The good thing is that they were abnormally large, about 30cm long and 15cm wide, so they will last me a while!
I baked the spaghetti squash in the oven, along with the meatballs and made the tomato sauce while they were baking. I added the cooked meatballs to the sauce, topped the squash with it and covered it with some mozzarella cheese. I baked it 5 more minutes to melt the cheese and it was the most amazing thing ever!!! My favourite food has always been pasta, especially lasagna, so I’m really happy to still be able to enjoy this amazing goodness using PCOS friendly ingredients! If you’re Paleo, or simply don’t consume dairy, feel free to skip the cheese part. I have mentioned in my previous articles and on “My PCOS Diet” food page, that I consume dairy, if and only if it’s from Jersey cows, sheep or goat.
Paleo Italian Meatballs & Spaghetti Squash
- 2 large spaghetti squash
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese SKIP if Paleo
- As needed Fresh basil leaves
- Preheat the oven to 200C/400F.
- Slice the spaghetti squash and scoop out the seeds, if any. Line baking trays with parchment paper and place the squash face down over the paper. Bake in oven 45-60 minutes depending on how big your squash are.
- Shred the mozzarella cheese and thinly slice the decorative basil leaves.
- While the squash are baking, let's make the meatballs.
- Thinly dice the onion and garlic cloves. Mince the parsley.
- In a large bowl, knead together the onion, garlic, pork, parsley, italian seasoning, salt & pepper, egg, and almond flour.
- Line a parchment paper over a baking tray. Make 20 meatballs the size of golf balls.
- Place inside the oven, where the squash is already cooking, and bake for 20 minutes. Take out of the oven once cooked!
- While the meatballs and squash are cooking, let's make the sauce!
- Thinly dice the onion. Mince the garlic, fresh basil and parsley. Slice the mushrooms.
- In a large pot, add the olive oil and cook the onion and garlic on medium-heat. When soft, add the mushrooms. Sautee for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the tomato cans, water, and all of the spices. Stir well and simmer on medium-heat, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Stir once in a while to make sure the bottom of the sauce doesn't stick to the pot.
- Add the cooked meatballs to the sauce and simmer another 10 minutes, or until desired thickness.
- Take the spaghetti squash out of the oven, DON'T turn off the oven.
- Scoop the noodles out of the shell so that they're easier to take, cover each shell with meatballs and tomato sauce. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the meatballs and put back in the oven. Bake for an additional 5 minutes, or 10 minutes if you want your cheese to brown.
- Take out of the oven and sprinkle some of the shredded basil over!