Low carb black bean spaghetti with creamed asparagus: never mind zoodles! Try this and you’ll ditch the zucchini for a while.
Zucchini, more commonly called courgettes in the UK, are a diet staple for everyone belonging to the keto club. Fried, stuffed, baked, boiled, steamed, roasted, sautéed, raw or stripped into noodles for ‘pretend’ pasta dishes, this humble vegetable is the star of many a ketogenic dinners around the world. It has even acquired its own vocabulary and equipment…who hasn’t heard of zoodles and zoodlers? How prestigious is that? It truly deserves the supreme title of Number 1 low carb vegetable in keto kitchens around the world. Zucchini rocks!!!!
So now you’re wondering why I came up with this low carb black bean spaghetti with creamed asparagus recipe. Basically, my love affair with pasta spread across 4 decades before I joined the keto club, so it was inevitable that I would embark on a quest to find something closer to real pasta than zoodles. Don’t get me wrong…I love zoodles, especially with seafood dishes (check out my low carb seafood linguine), but they always leave me wanting….Then a shopping trip to Asda turned into a diamond discovery. Black bean spaghetti. I hadn’t even heard of black bean until then! Anyway, I stared at the packaging for a bit…100% natural…organic…certified…GMO free…etc…and then walked away. Why? Because beans are high in carbs and should not be seen in a keto shopping trolley!
Thank goodness I turned back out of sheer curiosity. You see I didn’t check for carbs initially, so convinced was I that I would be disappointed again. You have no idea how many times I’ve looked at the back of packets, read the sky-high carbs value and immediately put the item back as if the mere act of touching the wrapper would throw me out of ketosis!!! Seriously. I never thought in a million years that pasta made from beans would be low-ish in carbs. But it was!
I bought my first pack purely for the sheer novelty and because I craved something other than zoodles for a change. Once I tried it I was hooked.
So whats the catch, you might wonder… Well, you may have noticed i said low-ish in carbs. The reason being that black bean spaghetti are lower in carbs than standard spaghetti, but not quite low enough to eat tons of it. The good news, however, is that after experimenting quite a bit, I can tell you that you only need 50g for each portion (obviously topped with plenty of your chosen sauce – the chunkier the better). It will look like a meager portion once cooked and drained, but you’ll have to trust me when I tell you that these spaghetti are very filling and you won’t be able to eat more than that.
The downside is that I have had difficulty finding black bean spaghetti in other Asda stores. It appears that only select stores sell this item. None of the other supermarkets do, either. But fear not, as I’ve been able to find black bean spaghetti online for about the same price as Asda’s (£3) including delivery. It might seem like a lot of money for 200g of spaghetti, when the regular ones can cost as little as 50p for 500g. If in doubt, just do what I do and remind yourself that cheap food = crap food. Plus remember that you’ll get 4 meals out of each packet which means 75p each meal. Now it doesn’t seem expensive anymore, right?
Cooking black bean spaghetti is a breeze.
Just as you would do with ordinary pasta, you bring salted water to the boil, you add the spaghetti, put the lid back on so that the water regains its boiling point again, then remove the lid, turn the heat down a little and simmer for 5 minutes. Drain and toss with whatever sauce you’ve prepared. These spaghetti are much thinner than ordinary spaghetti, so make sure you use a fine sieve rather than a colander, for draining. Also, I don’t know why but they seem to get cold very quickly. So try and get your sauce timed so that it’s piping hot and ready to serve by the time you drain the spaghetti.
Do black bean spaghetti taste like pasta? No. They don’t. Nothing will ever taste like pasta if not made with wheat. But it is close. Definitely closer than zoodles. I decided to make my low carb black bean spaghetti with creamed asparagus because it’s asparagus season and it would be rude not to use local, fresh produce.
How to make my low carb black bean spaghetti with creamed asparagus.
It’s fast and easy. Start by grating the Parmesan and roughly chopping the Gorgonzola. Put a pan of salted water over high heat. Asparagus are quick to cook, so you can focus on them while you wait for the water to boil. I use scissors to cut the tips off cooked asparagus. It’s quicker and neater than using a knife and chopping board. A few seconds in a mini chopper or blender and your asparagus stalks will turn creamy and smooth. Then it’s a case of simply putting all the ingredients into a small saucepan and letting the cheeses melt over low heat. Black bean spaghetti drained, you just assemble the dish and top with asparagus spears and nutritional yeast. And voilá, low carb black bean spaghetti with creamed asparagus ready to eat.
There you go. Low carb black bean spaghetti with creamed asparagus. Totally yummy and just 14.5g carbs per serving.
- Yield: 2
- Calories: 718
- Fat: 52g
- Net Carbs: 14.5g
- Protein: 39g
- snap off the thick part of the stem and discard, then boil or steam asparagus until a fork goes through the fattest part of the stem easily.
- cut the tips off and set aside.
- blitz asparagus stems until smooth, then transfer to a pan.
- to the asparagus paste, add butter, cream, Gorgonzola and Parmesan, and warm up over low heat, stirring continuously.
- add salt, pepper and paprika to taste and set aside, lid on.
- fill up ⅔ of a pan with water and add coarse salt.
- put lid on and bring to the boil.
- plunge black bean spaghetti into the boiling water and put lid back on.
- as soon as the water starts to boil again, reduce heat slightly and remove lid.
- cook for 5 mins while you re-heat creamed asparagus.
- lay creamed asparagus onto serving plates (preferably warmed up), top with drained spaghetti, asparagus tips and a sprinkle of nutritional yeast.
- serve immediately.
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