Spaghetti Bolognese with Kelp Noodles
During the 7 week paleo food challenge, I neglected some of my closest friends: spaghetti carbonara, spaghetti marinara and my ultimate BFF – spaghetti bolognese.
To get that noodle texture fix I was craving, I tried numerous spaghetti squash recipes but none of them felt right and all left me wanting to run to the nearest Mario Batali restaurant to stuff my face with the real deal. Fortunately, with the magic of the world wide web (thanks Al Gore), I found kelp noodles. For those of you who haven’t tried it yet, kelp noodles look just like clear glass noodles but with the initial texture of seaweed (i.e., slightly rubbery and chewy). It is made only of kelp (a sea vegetable), salt extracted from brown seaweed, and water. You could eat it straight from the packaging after washing the noodles under water but I prefer to heat up the noodles and add a variety of sauces. The great thing about kelp noodles is that they are extremely low in carbohydrates and calories while providing calcium and iron.
Kelp noodles will never be the perfect substitute for pasta, nor will you see it in the next version of Lady and the Tramp. But for those wanting the paleo next best thing to spaghetti, I think you’ll really enjoy this dish.
Makes 6 servings
2 bags of kelp noodles
1 pound ground beef
1 large onion – chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 15 oz can of organic tomato sauce
1/4 cup fresh parsley – chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
In a dutch oven (insert joke here), saute the garlic, parsley and onion in extra virgin olive oil and stir on high heat until nicely golden. Add the ground beef, salt and pepper, and cook on high heat. Make sure to constantly stir the meat so it breaks nicely and you don’t have large chunks of meat. We’re making bolognese sauce here – not meatballs.
Once the ground beef is nice and brown, add the tomato sauce, parsley, oregano, rosemary and red pepper flakes. Stir the mixture so that all of the ground beef and tomato sauce are evenly mixed. Taste and correct seasonings (add salt and/or pepper if needed). Lower heat and let simmer for an hour. (This is usually when I just put the dutch oven in a slow cooker on low heat, run out the door to grab a CrossFit WOD, and come back to a nice warm meal).
After an hour, the bolognese sauce should be meaty and delicious with a slightly sweet taste from the sauteed onions and have a little kick from the red pepper flakes. Open 2 bags of kelp noodles and quickly rinse with water. Add the noodles into the meat sauce and stir until the noodles are evenly coated. Allow for the noodles to absorb the sauce for 15 minutes on low heat. Best served hot and immediately. For those Lacto-Paleos out there, feel free to top with grated Parmesan or Romano cheese.