by Joyce Kohl

Are you a pasta freak like I am? Chances are you’ve been told you cannot eat pasta if you want to lose weight. Nonsense! Pasta isn’t the cause of weight gain, it’s the sauces and cheese and meats used. Or the crust of a pizza. Try my low-cal, 408-413 calorie recipe. It tastes marvelous and it will fill your plate as well as your cravings. Serves one.

Ingredients

1 1/2 Cup Cooked Spaghetti = 238 calories

1/2 Cup Italian or Mexican Tomato Sauce = about 20 calories

about 1/4 – 1/2 cup water

About 1/2 Cup chunked Eggplant, peeled = about 10 calories

2 tablespoons medium to hot Picante sauce = 5 calories (optional)

dash of Tabasco (optional)

2 teaspoon Parmesan cheese = 40 calories

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 – 2 packets of Sweet ‘N Low = 0 calories

Few dashes of oregano

1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder = 5 calories

Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation
While the spaghetti is cooking to the tender stage (the tender stage removes more starch/calories than does the firm stage), prepare the sauce in a medium skillet. For the sauce, add the the tomato sauce, water, Picante, Tabasco, eggplant, garlic powder, and oregano. Bring the mixture to a boil, cover with a lid and then simmer until eggplant is tender. Stir once or twice. Don’t let it boil dry. Add water if needed.

When the spaghetti is cooked, drain (rinse to remove starchy water which adds calories), then add it to the skillet of sauce. Stir and mix well. Let simmer for another 2-3 minutes. Toss. Simmer another minute or two letting the sauce cook into the spaghetti.

Serving
Pour it all on a pre-warmed plate, sprinkle the top with a packet or two of Sweet ‘N Low, toss lightly, then top with the Parmesan cheese. Add salt and pepper if desired.

If you have enough calories left for the day, have a piece of multi-grained toast. Be sure to add the calories to your count for the day BEFORE you eat. If you’d like to have a small salad, count the calories for it, then cut your spaghetti to only one cup. Use some imagination, the foods you personally like best, and careful calorie counting, you can prepare meals which YOU find tasty and satisfying.

TIP
If you hit a slump period when you can’t seem to lose weight for a couple of days, do not eat pasta for your evening meal. I don’t know why this works to generate weight loss again, but it does. Pasta is low-calorie, and if you’re pasta nuts, then be sure you don’t eat it at night.

Substitutions
Omit the Picante sauce and Tabasco – use catsup instead. Omit the Parmesan, then sprinkle freshly grated cheddar cheese on top of the spaghetti as soon as you pour it into your plate. Remember to count the calories!

You could add a few crumbles of cooked hamburger, diced chicken, other vegetables, and even use noodles, or any other pasta you’d prefer instead of the spaghetti. If you use spinach noodles, add a few leaves of fresh spinach to the sauce.

Add a two cup spinach salad with hot vinegar poured over it. Count the calories! To complete the dinner, add a slice of broiler toasted buttered bread (if you have calories left for the day) sprinkled lightly with garlic powder.

Conclusion
This is only a basic pasta recipe. There are probably hundreds of ways to change the ingredients to suit your personal taste. Eat a smaller calorie breakfast, a light dinner, and gobble this Italian pasta for lunch! Believe me, it’s g-o-o-d.

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