Chickpea Puttanesca with Spaghetti Squash and Arugula

Classic Puttanesca flavours: fire roasted tomatoes, kalamata olives, capers, red onion, garlic, red chilis, and balsamic vinegar, nestled in a bed of spaghetti squash! I used canned fire roasted tomatoes and canned organic chickpeas in this dish which makes it really quick to prepare. The spaghetti squash is cut and baked in rounds to create a nest for the chickpeas.

 

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Serves 2

The Squash:

  • 1 medium sized spaghetti squash cut into 1 in. thick rounds. Remove the seeds with a spoon.

 

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Preheat the oven to 350 F. Arrange the squash rounds on an oiled cookie sheet. Season with a sprinkling of salt and fresh ground pepper. Bake for 30 min. or until the squash is tender when pierced with a fork. While the squash is baking, prepare the Puttanesca.

The Sauce:

  • 1 398ml can of fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 Tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil
  • 11/2 tsp. himalayan pink salt
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. capers
  • 10-12 kalamata olives, pitted
  • 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp. red chilli flakes
  • 1 398 ml can of organic chickpeas (instructions for cooking your own below)
  • fresh basil to garnish
  • arugula to garnish.
  • extra virgin olive oil and fresh cracked pepper to garnish

In a large saucepan, saute onion with 3 Tbsp. of olive oil and 1/2 tsp. of the salt until tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic, saute a few minutes more.  Add the can of fire roasted tomatoes, capers, olives, vinegar, chilli flakes, and the remaining tsp. of salt. Simmer for 5 minutes. Add the cooked chickpeas and simmer 5 minutes more. Taste to adjust the seasonings, adding more salt and chilli if desired. Turn off the heat and set aside while you prepare the squash.

  • If you are cooking your own chickpeas, soak chickpeas in plenty of fresh water and a pinch of baking soda for 8 hours. The baking soda helps to tenderize the chickpeas. Drain and rinse the beans. Combine the drained beans with more water and boil for 1-3 hours until very tender. The cooking time depends on the freshness of the dried beans.

 

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Remove the cooked squash from the oven. Carefully pry the skin off with a fork separating the strands of squash as you  go to create a round nest. Arrange the nests on each plate. I used two rounds per serving, stacking one on top of the other to form a deeper nest.

 

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Reheat the chickpeas. Spoon a heap of the Puttanesca chickpeas into the centre of each squash nest. Top with fresh chopped basil, a hand full of Arugula and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, and fresh cracked pepper to serve!

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