Bottarga Squash (Grain-Free)

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bottarga squash

I think I have found spaghetti squash’s true calling; Bottarga Squash. This is a grain-free alternative to one of my favorite dishes, Bottarga Pasta. Bottarga, commonly referred to as the Mediterranean caviar, is the roe (fish eggs) of tuna or grey mullet that has been salt cured and dried. The briny flavor of the bottarga revitalizes the blandness of the squash. I feel healthier when I limit my grain consumption and was excited this remake actually worked.

There are different reasons for eliminating grains in the diet. Grains require proper preparation methods to neutralize phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors which allows for better digestion. Though promoted as healthy foods, whole grains can be the cause of many health issues. Some healing diets, like GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) and SCD (Specific Carbohydrate Diet), avoid grains to restore healthy digestion for the treatment of IBS, Crohn’s Disease, Autism, learning disabilities, and other conditions.

Paleo/Primal diets eliminate grains (in addition to legumes and processed foods), on the premise that humans are genetically identical to our Paleolithic ancestors and should be eating the diet we evolved on; animal proteins, vegetables, fruit, and nuts.

Many traditional societies included grains in their diet, but always soaked, fermented, and sprouted their grains to neutralize phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors. Our industrialized processing techniques for separating the bran and germ, quick-rise breads, high heat extrusion for cereals, and granolas, are not ideal methods for grains.  The overwhelming amount of these foods in our diet (among other processed foods) is contributing to the growing health and digestive issues in our society.

Regardless of where you stand on the grain issue, this dish is delicious for any diet:

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Bottarga Squash
A grain-free remake of the classic Sicilian dish. Bottarga is salt cured fish roe.

1 spaghetti squash
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove thinly sliced
5 ounces grated bottarga, or to taste
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped parsley
2 teaspoons lemon zest

1. Roast the squash in a 375 degrees oven for 45 minutes. Cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds, and separate the strands with a fork (can be made ahead).
2. In a medium skillet over a very low flame, heat the olive oil and garlic for a few minutes.
3. Add the grated bottarga to the skillet and mix into the olive oil (add more olive oil if it seems to dry).
4. Add the squash, parsley, and lemon zest to the skillet and toss.

Recommended Reading:
Be Kind to Your Grains…And Your Grains Will Be Kind To You – Weston A Price Website

This post is linked to Primal Toad | Primal Cave Friday.

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