This is a simple yet satisfying weeknight meal – healthier than pizza – and light enough to not bog you down on a warm night.
1 large chicken breast
1 jar your favorite marinara
1 small spaghetti squash
4 slices bacon
2 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp. capers
1 – 2 Tbsp. red chili flakes
About 1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs – I used a mix of basil, parsley and chives
Salt & pepper
First, cook your spaghetti squash using your favorite method. I halved mine width-wise, scooped the seeds, plopped on a lipped plate cut-side down, poked with a fork a few times, added a Tablespoon or so of water to the plate, covered with plastic wrap and zapped in the microwave for 20 minutes. However you cook, let cool before handling. When cool, shred with a fork into “noodles”. Set aside.
While the squash is working, chop your bacon, garlic and shallots. Add the bacon to a large pan over medium heat and cook until cooked through but still floppy. Add the shallots and garlic about halfway through and cook until soft. Set aside.
Preheat your oven to 425 F.
When the bacon and aromatics are done, add the capers & red pepper flakes and hit with salt and pepper.
Pound out your chicken breast so it’s one thickness – I sandwiched between two sheets of plastic wrap and went to town with the bowl of my heavy mortar.
In a large oven-safe skillet (cast iron is perfect), layer some marinara, the spaghetti squash “noodles”, the bacon mixture, the chicken, the rest of the marinara and top with thin slices of mozzarella.
Bake at 425 for 25 – 30 minutes or until the chicken is done and the cheese is bubbly. Broil 5 minutes or until the cheese has browned a bit. Top with the fresh herbs.
Serves 2 for dinner