Spaghetti Squash with Bacon, Spinach, and Feta

spaghetti squash etcTonight, as Penny and I fought through rush-hour traffic, I found myself convinced that every motorist and stoplight had joined a conspiracy to annoy me. Attempting to keep my cool, I took refuge in a hopeful question: “What’s for dinner?”

She tried to explain what we were having, but I didn’t get the full picture until we arrived home. The photo above is my bowl of Spaghetti Squash with Bacon, Spinach, and Feta Cheese. You can find the official recipe over on Buzzfeed, but my intrepid bride took a couple of liberties with her preparation.

First, she pulled out the Feta Cheese container that we bought at Costco and found that it had only a tiny bit remaining and that the expiration date had gone and expired. She opted instead for a bit of Parmesan–not nearly as much the recipe called for in goat cheese–which, to my mind didn’t hold back the taste.

Second, she cut back the bacon from six slices to three. This was rather thick cut bacon, so it was probably more like the equivalent of four slices. The effect of that is cutting back the calories a bit as well as the sodium, which is the only real nutritional negative in this dish.

According to the recipe, this bowl would have been 474 calories with 24g of fat, 50g carbs, and 20g protein. The sodium, as I mentioned before, is 116% of daily recommendation, but since the nutrition world is conflicted about salt, I’m not going to worry about that.

All of that nutrition stuff, though, is pretty worthless if the food isn’t good. My son’s girlfriend tasted some and found it “interesting,” which I took to mean, not so great but not worth spitting out. I ate mine without being tempted to douse it in Tabasco. The squash gives the heartiness of pasta but it has a fresh taste and a slight crunch that makes you feel as if you’re really eating something. And then there’s bacon, which not only tastes good but makes the house smell good.

All told, this recipe is a winner. Since the squash wasn’t in season, it wasn’t downright cheap, but still two people can eat for $5 without really trying to shop for bargains. Once the farmers’ markets start having spaghetti squash, the bacon will be the only ingredient with a price tag that isn’t measured out in nickels. Next time, hopefully, we’ll get to experience the full sodium load with the feta, but until then, I’ve eaten well.

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