It’s always exciting when winging it in the kitchen works out well. This dish was created for brunch with a friend who had warned me she was attempting the South Beach Diet. Normally my go-to brunch items include pancakes, or waffles, or Dutch babies…clearly carbs are brunch’s best friends. So as I spent a few days pondering non-carb brunch ideas and how to use the other random ingredients in my fridge because I didn’t have time to go grocery shopping, this dish was born. The chicken sausage was an impulse buy from Wegmans, it was delicious, but you could also use ground turkey, Italian sausage, or omit it altogether for a vegetarian version and add a fried egg on top. I had originally planned on adding a fried egg…because obviously if you add eggs it can totally pass for a breakfast food. But I decided it didn’t need it, and with brunch at 11, skipping to lunch items totally works, right?
So skipping to the end of the story, what started off as kind of a random “little bit of this, little bit of that” plan, turned into a delicious dish. I decided to roast some cabbage to go on the side just for fun (just cut cabbage into rings, drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt, and bake with the squashes), which was yummy. All in all this was a great, flavorful, veggie-packed meal that I would definitely make again for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
- 2 small spaghetti squashes, cut in half length-wise and seeds scooped out
- extra-virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half
Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Drizzle cut side of squashes lightly with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper and rub 1/2 a garlic clove into each half. Place cut side down on prepared baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes, until fork tender.
Chicken Sausage Ratatouille:
- 1 lb chicken sausage (I used an herb and garlic kind), casing removed
- extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 small onions, chopped
- 1/2 large green pepper, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 large zucchini, diced
- 1 (15oz) can diced tomatoes
- salt and pepper to taste
- feta for garnish
In a large pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken sausage and break it up with a spatula as it cooks. Once the sausage has cooked through and begins to brown, remove to a separate plate. Add onion and green pepper to the pan, sauté until they begin to soften. Add garlic and zucchini, salt and pepper to taste, and sauté for a few more minutes. Add diced tomatoes, and if squashes are almost ready, return chicken sausage to the pan as well and cook for a few more minutes, reducing heat to medium-low.
Once the squashes are fork tender, plate them, cut side up and fill with the ratatouille mixture, then top with crumbled feta cheese.