Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Spaghetti Squash Primavera


Last month my husband and I were watching an episode of Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives and we found this recipe. Imagine a bunch of sauteed vegetables covered in a delicious marinara sauce, and then topped with melted mozzarella cheese. It doesn't have any meat in it, but trust me, you won't miss it!

This makes enough food to fill both halves of the spaghetti squash (which is enough for me to eat for about 4 meals, so it's probably 3-4 servings depending on how hungry you are):
  • SPAGHETTI SQUASH
  • RED BELL PEPPER, diced
  • 1/2 RED ONION, diced
  • 3 cloves of GARLIC, minced
  • 2 stalks of CELERY, sliced
  • CARROTS, sliced
  • ZUCCHINI, diced
  • 1 small head of BROCCOLI
  • 1 Tbs OLIVE OIL
  • 2 cups MARINARA SAUCE (I used the sauce that I make for spaghetti & meatballs, but a store bought jar would also work!)
  • SALT, to taste
  • PEPPER, to taste
  • 1 ball of fresh MOZZARELLA CHEESE (shredded mozzarella would also work)

Start off by cutting the spaghetti squash in half long-wise. Be careful because the skin of the squash is really tough. Put the squash halves into a pot of boiling water and cook for 10 minutes.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.


While the squash is cooking, dice up the bell pepper, red onion, garlic, celery, carrots, zucchini, and broccoli. 



Next, start sauteing the vegetables in a large skillet. Heat the olive oil in the skillet and then add the bell pepper. Once that starts to heat up, add the onion and  garlic. When that is also warmed up add the celery and carrots. Adding the vegetables a little bit at a time will keep the pan hot and the cooking consistent. 


Once all of the vegetables are turning translucent and getting tender, add the broccoli and zucchini. You want to add them last because they cook faster than the other veggies and you don't want them to get mushy. 


By now the spaghetti squash should be done cooking. Scoop out the seeds and discard them. Then take a fork and scrape the stringy, spaghetti-like squash out. Set aside in a small bowl


Once all of the vegetables are tender but not mushy, stir in about 1 to 1 & 1/2 cups of your marinara sauce


Once the sauce has gotten hot, add the spaghetti squash.


At this point you might want to add a little more sauce, but make sure that you still have about 1/2 cup left to put on top. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. (You may want to add more depending on how much salt is already in your marinara sauce.)


Once you are happy with your vegetable and sauce mixture, scoop it into the 2 halves of the spaghetti squash shell. 


Vualá!


Next, place the filled halves of the squash on a cookie sheet and and lay 2 slices of the fresh mozzarella on each squash half. 


Put the cookie sheet with the squash in the oven and bake for 10 minutes to get the mozzarella nice and melted.


When the squash comes out of the oven, top the halves with the remaining marinara sauce and serve!


Look out gooey and wonderful the cheese was after baking in the oven!


We will definitely be making this again soon!





Spaghetti Squash Primavera

Ingredients:
  • SPAGHETTI SQUASH
  • RED BELL PEPPER, diced
  • 1/2 RED ONION, diced
  • 3 cloves of GARLIC, minced
  • 2 stalks of CELERY, sliced
  • CARROTS, sliced
  • ZUCCHINI, diced
  • 1 small head of BROCCOLI
  • 1 Tbs OLIVE OIL
  • 2 cups MARINARA SAUCE (I used the sauce that I make for spaghetti & meatballs, but a store bought jar would also work!)
  • SALT, to taste
  • PEPPER, to taste
  • 1 ball of fresh MOZZARELLA CHEESE (shredded mozzarella would also work)
      Directions:
      1. Start off by cutting the spaghetti squash in half long-wise. Be careful because the skin of the squash is really tough. Put the squash halves into a pot of boiling water and cook for 10 minutes.
      2. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
      3. While the squash is cooking, dice up the bell pepper, red onion, garlic, celery, carrots, zucchini, and broccoli. 
      4. Next, start sauteing the vegetables in a large skillet. Heat the olive oil in the skillet and then add the bell pepper. Once that starts to heat up, add the onion and  garlic. When that is also warmed up add the celery and carrots. Adding the vegetables a little bit at a time will keep the pan hot and the cooking consistent. 
      5. Once all of the vegetables are turning translucent and getting tender, add the broccoli and zucchini. You want to add them last because they cook faster than the other veggies and you don't want them to get mushy. 
      6. By now the spaghetti squash should be done cooking. Scoop out the seeds and discard them. Then take a fork and scrape the stringy, spaghetti-like squash out. Set aside in a small bowl
      7. Once all of the vegetables are tender but not mushy, stir in about 1 to 1 & 1/2 cups of your marinara sauce. 
      8. When the sauce has gotten hot, add the spaghetti squash.
      9. At this point you might want to add a little more sauce, but make sure that you still have about 1/2 cup left to put on top. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. (You may want to add more depending on how much salt is already in your marinara sauce.)
      10. Once you are happy with your vegetable and sauce mixture, scoop it into the 2 halves of the spaghetti squash shell. 
      11. Next, place the filled halves of the squash on a cookie sheet and and lay 2 slices of the fresh mozzarella on each squash half. 
      12. Put the cookie sheet with the squash in the oven and bake for 10 minutes to get the mozzarella nice and melted.
      13. When the squash comes out of the oven, top the halves with the remaining marinara sauce and serve!




            http://media.wix.com/ugd/60b189_879cce613030aede7fa7a8e1e75cd9bb.pdf?dn=spaghetti_squash_pitstop.pdf

            Sunday, July 6, 2014

            Soy Grilled Mahi-Mahi


            My husband bought a grill a few weeks ago and since then we have been trying to use it as much as we can. Last week we decide to make some mahi-mahi for the first time and I have to say, it turned out pretty darn well! I had never had mahi-mahi before, so I wasn't really sure what to expect, but it turned out delicious! Mahi-mahi has a fairly mild fish flavor so it takes on the flavors that you season it with really well. We decided to go in an Asian direction and were both very pleased with the results!  

            To make 2 servings of this delicious soy grilled mahi-mahi you will need: 
            • 2, 6oz. MAHI MAHI FILETS (I think salmon would also be good!)
            • 1/4 cup SOY SAUCE
            • 1 & 1/2 Tbs RICE VINEGAR
            • 1 Tbs SESAME OIL
            • 2 Tbs GRANULATED SUGAR or BROWN SUGAR
            • 1 tsp GARLIC POWDER
            • 1/8 tsp CAYENNE PEPPER
            • 1 GREEN ONION, sliced

            Mix the soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, sugar, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and half of the green onion in a medium sized bowl.


            Next, add the mahi-mahi into the mixture and allow the fish to marinate at room temperature for about 15 minutes


            While the fish is marinating get your grill ready. Heat the grill to medium-high heat. (You should only be able to hold your hand close to the grill for about 2-3 seconds.) If you don't have a grill, you could cook it on the stove just as easily. 

            Once the grill is ready and the fish has been marinating for at least 15 minutes,  put the fillets on the grill top side down. Let the fillet cook for 2-3 minutes and then rotate it 45 degrees. Cook the fillet for 2-3 minutes in this position (if you have a seasoned grill this will give you criss-cross marks). Next, turn the fillets over and cook another 3-4 minutes. Overall, the fish should be on the grill for about 8-10 minutes


            While the fish is on the grill, heat the marinade in a small pot on the stove. Simmer the marinade for a few minutes on the stove and then serve it as a dipping sauce alongside the fillets. Top with the rest of the sliced green onions.






            Soy Grilled Mahi-Mahi

            Ingredients:
            • 2, 6oz. MAHI MAHI FILETS (I think salmon would also be good!)
            • 1/4 cup SOY SAUCE
            • 1 & 1/2 Tbs RICE VINEGAR
            • 1 Tbs SESAME OIL
            • 2 Tbs GRANULATED SUGAR or BROWN SUGAR
            • 1 tsp GARLIC POWDER
            • 1/8 tsp CAYENNE PEPPER
            • GREEN ONION, sliced
                Directions:
                1. Mix the soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, sugar, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, and half of the green onion in a medium sized bowl.
                2. Next, add the mahi-mahi fillets into the mixture and allow the fish to marinate at room temperature for about 15 minutes
                3. While the fish is marinating get your grill ready. Heat the grill to medium-high heat. (You should only be able to hold your hand close to the grill for about 2-3 seconds.) If you don't have a grill, you could cook it on the stove just as easily. 
                4. Once the grill is ready and the fish has been marinating for at least 15 minutes,  put the fillets on the grill top side down. Let the fillet cook for 2-3 minutes and then rotate it 45 degrees. Cook the fillet for 2-3 minutes in this position (if you have a seasoned grill this will give you criss-cross marks). Next, turn the fillets over and cook another 3-4 minutes. Overall, the fish should be on the grill for about 8-10 minutes
                5. While the fish is on the grill, heat the marinade in a small pot on the stove. Simmer the marinade for a few minutes and then serve it as a dipping sauce alongside the fillets. Top with the rest of the sliced green onions.



                      I found the recipe on the following website: http://www.kalynskitchen.com/2007/06/soy-grilled-mahi-mahi-recipe-with.html

                      Thursday, June 19, 2014

                      Egg Drop Soup


                      One of my favorite things to get at Chinese restaurants is egg drop soup. I have always wondered how the soup was made but never knew how until recently. It actually turned out to be pretty easy!

                      To make 2 bowls of soup you will need:
                      • 2 cups CHICKEN BROTH
                      • 1/2 tablespoon CORNSTARCH
                      • EGGS
                      • GREEN ONION, chopped
                      • SALT & PEPPER to taste
                      • Optional: a few drops of SESAME OIL


                      Whisk the chicken broth and corn starch together in a small pot. (Make sure that the chicken broth is either cool or at room temperature for this step. If the broth is hot the cornstarch will clump!) Then start heating the mixture on the stove.



                      Whisk your eggs in a small bowl like you are making scrambled eggs. 


                      Once the chicken broth reaches a boil, use a spoon to stir the broth so that you get a vortex. Slowly drizzle the egg into the broth while continuing to stir the broth with your other hand. (If you aren't very coordinated, you may want to recruit a friend to help with this step.) The egg will cook immediately and should look like thin wisps in the broth.


                      Once all of the egg has been added, stir in the salt, pepper, and sesame oil. Sprinkle the chopped green onions on top and enjoy!






                      Egg Drop Soup

                      Ingredients:
                      To make 2 bowls of soup you will need:
                      • 2 cups CHICKEN BROTH
                      • 1/2 tablespoon CORNSTARCH
                      • EGGS
                      • GREEN ONION
                      • SALT & PEPPER to taste
                      • Optional: a few drops of SESAME OIL

                        Directions:
                        1. Whisk the chicken broth and corn starch together in a small pot. (Make sure that the chicken broth is either cool or at room temperature for this step. If the broth is hot the cornstarch will clump!) Then start heating the mixture on the stove
                        2. Whisk your eggs in a small bowl like you are making scrambled eggs. 
                        3. Once the chicken broth reaches a boil, use a spoon to stir the broth so that you get a vortex. Slowly drizzle the egg into the broth while continuing to stir the broth with your other hand. (If you aren't very coordinated, you may want to recruit a friend to help with this step.) The egg will cook immediately and should look like thin wisps in the broth. 
                        4. Once all of the egg has been added, stir in the salt, pepper, and sesame oil. Sprinkle the chopped green onions on top and enjoy!



                          Sugar Flowers




                          Roses


                          Daises  


                          Carnations 


                          Orchid




                          Thursday, May 29, 2014

                          Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice


                          This recipe is a great way to cut a few carbs out of your diet. Simply substitute riced cauliflower for regular white rice in your favorite dishes. I like to serve this cilantro lime cauliflower rice with black beans, chicken, shredded cheese, and salsa. Imagine a Chipotle burrito bowl but with riced cauliflower instead of white rice! 

                          To make this cilantro lime cauliflower rice you will need:
                          • 1 head of CAULIFLOWER
                          • 1-2 Tbs COCONUT OIL (you could substitute vegetable or canola oil)
                          • 1/2 ONION, diced
                          • 2 cloves of GARLIC, minced
                          • 1/2 cup CILANTRO, chopped
                          • 3 Tbs LIME JUICE
                          • SALT to taste
                          • PEPPER to taste

                          Grate the cauliflower using either a cheese grater or a food processor (if using a food process pulse the cauliflower in batches until the desired texture is reached). 


                          The grated cauliflower should look something like the picture below! The pieces should be about the same size as a grain of rice.


                          Heat the oil in a skillet over med-high heat and then add the onion and garlic.


                          When the onion starts to turn translucent add the riced cauliflower. Cook the cauliflower stirring occasionally for 5-7 minutes.


                          Once the cauliflower is cooked through, stir in the chopped cilantro and lime juice!



                          Add salt and pepper to taste and then dig in!






                          Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice

                          Ingredients:
                          • 1 head of CAULIFLOWER
                          • 1-2 Tbs COCONUT OIL (could substitute vegetable or canola oil)
                          • 1/2 ONION, diced
                          • 2 cloves of GARLIC, minced
                          • 1/2 cup CILANTRO, chopped
                          • 3 Tbs LIME JUICE
                          • SALT to taste
                          • PEPPER to taste
                              Directions:
                              1. Grate the cauliflower using either a cheese grater or a food processor (if using a food process pulse the cauliflower in batches until the desired texture is reached). 
                                • The pieces should be about the same size as a grain of rice.
                              2. Heat the oil in a skillet over med-high heat and then add the onion and garlic.
                              3. When the onion starts to turn translucent add the riced cauliflower. Cook the cauliflower stirring occasionally for 5-7 minutes.
                              4. Once the cauliflower is cooked through, stir in the chopped cilantro and lime juice! Add salt and pepper to taste and then dig in!




                                  I based this dish on the following recipe: http://popularpaleo.com/2013/01/07/cilantro-lime-cauliflower-rice/

                                  Thursday, May 22, 2014

                                  Baked Vegetable Chips


                                  I love this recipe because it allows me to eat chips without feeling quite so guilty. You can take just about any root vegetable, slice it thin, and then bake it until it's crispy! 

                                  Pick one or more of the following:
                                  • BEET
                                  • BUTTERNUT SQUASH (my second favorite!)
                                  • KALE
                                  • PARSNIP
                                  • POTATO
                                  • SWEET POTATO (my favorite!)
                                  You will also need:
                                  • OLIVE OIL
                                  • SALT

                                  Start off by peeling your vegetables. Then, use a mandolin or a sharp knife to cut your vegetable of choice into 1/8th to 1/16th inch thick slices (or as thin as you can get them). 

                                  Next, soak the slices in a bowl of water for about an hour. This will help the chips crisp up by removing some of the excess starch. 

                                  Sweet Potato

                                  After an hour, drain the water...

                                  Beets & Butternut Squash

                                  ...and lay the slices out on a paper towel to dry. Sprinkle some salt onto the slices while they dry to help pull the water out. Pat dry with another paper towel. While the chips are drying, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F


                                  Once the chips are relatively dry place them onto a baking sheet and drizzle on some of the olive oil. Make sure that none of the chips are touching. (I sprinkled a little cinnamon on the sweet potato chips)

                                  Sweet Potato

                                  Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the chips are crispy. How thin you slice the chips will determine how long they will need to actually bake.

                                  Butternut Squash

                                  Once the chips are out of the oven, sprinkle with a little bit of salt or other spices and eat up!
                                    Butternut Squash & Parsnips

                                    These chips are best eaten fresh. You could prepare them ahead of time, but make sure not to bake them until the day you plan to eat them!





                                    Baked Vegetable Chips

                                    Ingredients:

                                    Pick one or more of the following:
                                    • BEET
                                    • BUTTERNUT SQUASH (my second favorite!)
                                    • KALE
                                    • PARSNIP
                                    • POTATO
                                    • SWEET POTATO (my favorite!)
                                    You will also need:
                                    • OLIVE OIL
                                    • SALT
                                        Directions:
                                        1. Start off by peeling your vegetables. 
                                        2. Use a mandolin or a sharp knife to cut your vegetable of choice into 1/8th to 1/16th inch thick slices (or as thin as you can get them). 
                                        3. Soak the slices in a bowl of water for about an hour. This will help the chips crisp up by removing some of the excess starch. 
                                        4. After an hour, drain the water and lay the slices out on a paper towel to dry. Sprinkle some salt onto the slices while they dry to help pull the water out. Pat dry with another paper towel. While the chips are drying, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F
                                        5. Once the chips are relatively dry place them onto a baking sheet and drizzle on some of the olive oil. Make sure that none of the chips are touching. 
                                        6. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the chips are crispy. How thin you slice the chips will determine how long they will need to actually bake. 
                                        7. Once the chips are out of the oven, sprinkle with a little bit of salt or other spices and eat up! 
                                          • Note: These chips are best eaten fresh. You could prepare them ahead of time, but make sure not to bake them until the day you plan to eat them!



                                            Saturday, May 10, 2014

                                            Sausage Gravy


                                            Last weekend my husband and I had some friend over we and made breakfast for dinner! We made an egg casserole, bacon, and biscuits with sausage gravy. Now, I had never actually made sausage gravy before and I have to tell you, it was so simple! I didn't expect it to be difficult, but I had no idea just how simple it would be! 

                                            To make enough gravy for 4-6 biscuits you will need:
                                            • 1/2 lb. GROUND SAUSAGE
                                            • 4 Tbs FLOUR
                                            • 2 & 1/2 cups MILK
                                            • 1/2 tsp SALT
                                            • 1/2 tsp PEPPER

                                            Start off by browning the sausage in a skillet on the stove


                                            Once the sausage is cooked, sprinkle the flour over the top. Stir the flour into the sausage and allow the mixture to cook for another 3 minutes


                                            Next, pour in the milk. 


                                            Stir to combine and add the salt and pepper. (I ended up adding an extra 1/2 tsp of pepper.)


                                            Allow the gravy to cook over a medium heat until it thickens, about 10 minutes. Be sure to stir the gravy frequently to keep it from burning on the bottom of the skillet. 

                                            If you have trouble getting the gravy to thicken stir in a little bit more flour. If the gravy become too thick, just add a splash of milk!


                                            Bake up some biscuits to serve it over...


                                             ...and enjoy!


                                            Perfection. 






                                            Sausage Gravy

                                            Ingredients:
                                            • 1/2 lb. GROUND SAUSAGE
                                            • 4 Tbs FLOUR
                                            • 2 & 1/2 cups MILK
                                            • 1/2 tsp SALT
                                            • 1/2 tsp PEPPER
                                                Directions:
                                                1. Start off by browning the sausage in a skillet on the stove
                                                2. Once the sausage is cooked, sprinkle the flour over the top. Stir the flour into the sausage and allow the mixture to cook for another 3 minutes
                                                3. Next, pour in the milk. Stir to combine and add the salt and pepper. (I ended up adding an extra 1/2 tsp of pepper.)
                                                4. Allow the gravy to cook over a medium heat until it thickens, about 10 minutes. Be sure to stir the gravy frequently to keep it from burning on the bottom of the skillet. 
                                                  • If you have trouble getting the gravy to thicken, stir in a little bit of extra flour. If the gravy become too thick, just add a splash of milk!
                                                5. Bake up some biscuits to serve it over and enjoy!