Healthy Eating: Ground elk tomato sauce with spaghetti squash

Lauren Blair

Elk lends itself well to warm, hearty meals and also pairs well with the bright, fresh flavors of summer. Branch out, try something new and enjoy. For ground elk tomato sauce with spaghetti squash you’ll need:

• Extra virgin olive oil

• 3 onions, chopped

• 10-12 cloves garlic, minced

• ½ tsp crushed red pepper (optional)

• 2 lb ground elk meat

• ¼- ½ cup red wine

• 3 x 28 oz cans crushed tomatoes

• 2 tsp dried oregano

• 2 tsp dried basil

• pinch of sugar, to taste

• salt, 1 to 2 tsp or to taste

• black pepper

• 1 large or 2 small spaghetti squash, cut in half lengthwise

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and bake face down on a baking sheet in ½ inch of water for approximately 45 to 60 minutes. When the squash is tender, remove from the oven, let cool briefly, then scrape cross-wise with a fork to break apart the spaghetti-like flesh.

To prepare sauce, sauté onions, garlic and crushed red pepper in a large saucepan in olive oil over medium low heat until onions become translucent. Turn heat up to medium high and add ground elk. Stir frequently, allowing meat to brown. When the meat begins sticking to the pan, deglaze with a splash or two of red wine.

Add crushed tomatoes. Bring the sauce to a light simmer and turn heat to low. Let simmer uncovered for 20 to 30 minutes, or until sauce has thickened. Add oregano, basil, sugar to taste, salt and black pepper. Let simmer another five minutes and turn heat off.

Serve over a big pile of spaghetti squash with freshly grated parmesan cheese. It also goes great over regular pasta.

Recipe derived by Lauren Blair, health and education reporter for the Saturday Morning Press.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Craig and Moffat County make the Craig Press’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.