Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Family-Friendly Faux Spaghetti (5 Points) AND Bread Sticks (5 for 4.5 Points) for Only 9.5 Weight Watchers Points!

I know my picture quality could stand some improvement, but I have to tell ya, without having an extra set of hands holding some special lighting reflecting onto the food that I am about to eat, I don't much care 'cuz I gotsta eat it before it gets cold!

I'm very happy I tried the Faux spaghetti AND the Faux breadsticks (my second time making these).  It was all very Flavorful.  Turns out I actually like my zucchini "noodles" much better than real pasta, and brace yourself.....wait for it.....2 whole ounces of lean ground beef, a whole 1/2 cup of spaghetti sauce, and a bowlful of zucchini is only 5 Weight Watchers points!

The Faux breadsticks are made of cauliflower!  Here's the Funny....each of my kids ate it too!  Of course, they had NO idea they were eating cauliflower.  Because I was able to slide this one past my three picky and choosy eaters and one asked for more (yes there is a difference), I'm labeling the breadsticks Family Friendly! I'm labeling it Family-Friendly ESPECIALLY because Mr. F. (who once puked while being Forced to eat cauliflower by a babysitter as a child) ate it too.  I know...probably mean not to mention it was cauliflower to someone with a past experience such as his, but I had to try it.  I made the announcement after he was done and had expressed his Favorable opinion.  I'll probably never tell the children until they're on their own.

I bet you could slide the zucchini noodles in if you peeled the green off before blanching AND mixed it all up prior to presentation to the Fussy eaters. ;) (Have to try this one soon.)

Cautionary note....there is a little piece of metal sticking out inside of the Veggeti I bought at Walgreens that can cut your knuckles as you twist your "noodles" out.  I did not use the gripper device provided because I guess my zucchini was too narrow and curvy to keep hold of it, but I did try to use it.

                                                                  (Still hungry? Ewww)

I got the recipe for the Faux breadsticks from Betty at Betty's Kitchen here. Thank you Betty! I'll share what my measurements, etc. were, and as is per usual, the points values.

5-Point Faux Spaghetti Ingredients/Directions:

2 oz. lean ground beef = 4 points
1/2 c. spaghetti sauce = 1 point
1 whole zucchini = 0 points (I used the end labled "Thin" for thin "noodles")

   Instructions:  I just browned my lean ground beef and set aside 2 ounces of it onto paper towel (to let the paper towel absorb any fats).  I took out 1/2 cup of spaghetti sauce from the batch I threw into the beef mixture for the rest of the family.  After using the Veggeti to process my zucchini, I brought water in a sauce pan to a boil, tossed in the "noodles," and boiled for only 2 minutes.  I quickly heated up my premeasured meatsauce and tossed with my "noodles." Voila. Done.

4.5-Point Faux Breadsticks (for 5 sticks!): 

1 large head cauliflower (I just go for an average size - I'll weigh one out for my next batch)=0 points
2 cloves garlic, minced = 0 points
2 eggs, well beaten = 4 points (2 points each egg) (could probably use egg white substitute)
4 oz. shredded mozzarella (I use regular) = 8 points
1/2 tsp. onion powder = 0 points
coarse sea salt to taste = 0 points
freshly ground black pepper = 0 points
cooking spray = 0 points
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese (I grate my own) = 6 points
Italian seasoning to taste (I use generously)

   Instructions: Betty's directions instruct you to use a plastic-covered bowl to steam your veggies in the microwave, but I won't use plastic in the microwave due to the health implications this practice is said to have, so I steam my cauliflower until it is Fork tender on the stove top.

I let it cool in a strainer for about 5 minutes so that as much excess water drains/evaporates off as possible (you don't want it to be particularly water logged, as it will leave your sticks extra mushy).

Once the steamed cauliflower is Fork tender, place in a Food processor and pulse/run until mashed-potato consistency.  Add in the eggs, mozzarella cheese, garlic, and onion powder.  Process again until well combined.

Spray a 10" x 15" baking pan with cooking spray and spread the cauliflower mixture out evenly, pressing slightly.  Sprinkle with the coarse sea salt, black pepper, and Italian seasoning to taste, and then cover evenly with 1 whole cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese (you can use less Parmesan if you like to save on points if necessary).

Bake in the oven at 450 degrees for about 20 minutes or until sufficiently browned and sides have pulled slightly away from the edges of the pan.  Slice into 20 "breadsticks."

These breadsticks aren't going to stand up to being held in your hand, but cutting them with a Fork to eat them works just Fine.  I just told my kids the "dough" was a little weak. ;)  The less water your cauliflower holds onto, the more Firm your sticks will be.

I just cut off a chunk of the "breadstick" and slid it into my Faux spaghetti.  It was delicious.

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