1 hr with down time
Cranberry Apple Turkey Sausage with Spaghetti Squash and Spinach Salad
• 1 Medium sized Spaghetti Squash, cut in half, seeds scraped out
• 2 Tbsp Butter
• 1 Tbsp Maple Syrup or Natural Cane Sugar
• Cinnamon & Nutmeg
• Salt & Pepper
Apple Cranberry Turkey Sausage:
• 1 ¼ lb Ground Turkey
• 1 Small Apple, cored, cut into small cubes
• 1/3 Cup Dried Cranberries (unsweetened if you can find them! (juice or natural cane juice sweetened if you can’t!)
• 1 Tbsp Fennel (or Anise) Seeds, toasted and crushed
• ½ Tsp Salt
• ¼ Tsp Pepper
• 2 Tbsp bacon fat, or mayo, or coconut oil (optional – but keeps sausage patties
moist and juicy!)
• 1 Egg (optional)
• 4 large handfuls of baby spinach
• 3 slices of bacon (optional)
• Handful of walnuts, chopped coarsely
• 6 dried figs, each one cut into 6 pieces
• 1/3 Cup Olive Oil
• 2 Tbsp Miso Paste, thinned down with a little warm water so that it’s a bit runny
• 1 – 1 ½” fresh ginger, peeled and cut into 4 pieces
• 1 – 2 Tsp Natural Orange Extract (depending on how orangey you like your dressing!)
• Pepper to taste (you will not need salt as the miso brings saltiness to the dressing)
Step by Step Instructions
Step 1 – Get the Squash Into the Oven!
Set oven to 350°. Cut squash in half length wise and remove seeds. Poke the flesh of squash with a fork all over the inside surface. Place the squash on a parchment lined baking sheet. Add half the butter and the syrup (or cane sugar) to each half of the squash. Sprinkle each half with cinnamon, nutmeg, salt & pepper, and roast for 1 hour – but set a timer for 50 minutes as you will need to start the Turkey sausage before the squash is done!
Step 2 – Turkey Sausage
Toast fennel or anise seeds in a skillet over medium/low heat for 5 min stirring constantly (or on a sheet pan in the oven 250° for 5 min). Allow the seeds to cool, then use a pestle and mortar to crush them, or use a clean coffee grinder and grind to a medium powder. (I have a coffee grinder that I use only for dried herbs – super handy!).
Next, place ground turkey, cubed apple, cranberries, fennel or anise, salt & pepper (also add bacon fat/mayo/coconut oil/ and egg if using) into a bowl and use your hands to combine all ingredients well. Divide into 4 portions and form into patties (don’t make the patties too thick – they will be dry when cooked) then set aside.
Time to get your salad together.
Step 3 – Crispification
Cut bacon into ¼ “ bits (just slice across the width) and using the skillet that you will cook your turkey sausage patties in, cook bacon over medium heat until crispy. Remove from heat and set bacon bits on a piece of paper towel to drain. Discard excess fat from pan.
Step 4 – For the Finish
Prepare Orange Ginger Miso Dressing:
Place ginger into small food processor and pulse until finely chopped, then add Miso, Olive Oil, Pepper, and Orange Extract and pulse until well combined (adjust Orange and Pepper to your taste as you go along) then pour into a small jar with a tight fitting lid and set aside (on the counter, not the fridge. The olive oil will harden in the fridge and you’re going to use it shortly. Store what you don’t use in the fridge – it will keep for a week, but take it out of the fridge a good 20 min before you want to use it again so that it has time to return to liquid). If you find the dressing too thick, add a little more Olive Oil to your liking. (There, you just made your own Orange Miso Dressing! – Impressive!).
Now get the greens ready: Place Spinach in a large bowl. Add Walnuts, Figs, and Crispy Bacon on top. Set aside.
When the spaghetti squash has been in the oven for 50 minutes, start the Turkey Sausage Patties, in the same skillet you used for the bacon, on medium/high heat until browned nicely on both sides. About 10 minutes. While they are sizzling away, the squash will have been in the oven for an hour and will be done. Turn off the oven, remove the squash from the oven and using two forks, one to keep hold of the squash and the other to rake, pull a fork length wise down the squash to loosen the strands. Keep raking until all the strands have spaghettified, then scoop the strands of the Spaghetti Squash from both halves into a bowl and mix well to distribute the spices & butter. Add more butter, salt and pepper to taste, then cover the bowl and place it in the oven to keep warm.
Step 5 – Plate Up!
When the Turkey Sausage patties are done, remove them from the heat and cover to keep warm. Next, add the Orange Ginger Dressing to the salad (as much or little as you like, to your preference – there will be more dressing than you need for this salad) and toss until everything is nicely mixed and coated with dressing.
Plate your salad, then add the spaghetti squash and the Turkey Sausage Patty, and dinner is ready to be served!