Saturday, November 27, 2010

Southwest Spaghetti Squash

Squash that doesn't taste squashy? Yes, please. I'm trying to like it, I really am, but I don't want every squash-based meal to taste like, well, mashed orange squash.

This dish will get another chance in our kitchen. I tried to make it a slow-cooker-friendly meal so we could eat immediately after running group, but it didn't really work out the greatest. I couldn't decrease any liquids, since there aren't any additional liquids, so it turned out very soupy. I made a last-minute decision to serve it over leftover brown rice, which saved us from going out for crappy fast food. The flavor was great--pretty powerful heat from the tomatoes, actually--and I would like to see how it turns out in a casserole dish as written.

Southwest Spaghetti Squash

from Favorite Brand Name Incredibly Easy Gluten-Free Recipes

serves 4

1 spaghetti squash, about 3lbs
1 can (14.5oz) Mexican-style tomatoes, undrained
1 can (15oz) black beans, rinsed and drained
3/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese, divided (we used cheddar)
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
1 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp garlic salt (I subbed kosher salt and garlic powder)
1/4 tsp black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 350* and spray a large baking pan and a 1.5qt casserole dish with nonstick cooking spray. Cut squash in half lengthwise. Remove and discard seeds. Place squash, cut-side down, on prepared baking pan. Bake 45-60 minutes until tender. Shred squash with two forks; place in a large bowl.

2. Add tomatoes, beans, 1/2 cup cheese, cilantro, cumin, garlic salt, and pepper; toss well. Spoon mixture into prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheese.

3. Bake uncovered 30-35 minutes or until heated through. Serve hot.

If I were to attempt this in the slow cooker again, I would drain the tomatoes, omit the last 1/4 cup of cheese, and maybe mix in some more beans.

Monday, November 22, 2010

A happy little lunch

Wine and cheese. Love and marriage. Grilled cheese and tomato soup. A match made in heaven.

The soup was leftover (which I think makes tomato-based dishes that much more flavorful), the sandwich was gooey, the kale crisps salty, and the weather dreary. What's not to love?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Super simple meal plan

Sunday lunch - turkey black bean chili, one of my best batches yet! One pound ground turkey, one can (equivalent--homemade) black beans, 1 box Pomi chopped tomatoes, seasoned with 2 Tbsp ancho chili powder, 2 tsp ground cumin, a few shakes of dried oregano, two shallots, and two cloves of garlic. The H had some rice elbow noodles with his, and we topped it with strained plain yogurt and sharp shredded cheddar. Served with apple slices.

Sunday dinner - friends invited us over for grilled pork chops, sweet potatoes, and carrots. We brought gluten-free brownies and a bottle of wine.

Monday - homemade (GF) pizza with whatever veggies look good to me!

Tuesday - something simple in the CrockPot for me and The H; the little guy will be dining with his grandparents while we go for our run and then dash over to co-op pickup.

Wednesday through Friday - meals with family for Thanksgiving... I have no real control over them, but I know I'm responsible for a GF dessert and a veggie side dish for Thursday.

Saturday - depends what time we get home; we may be going out.

Happy holiday planning!

Cheddar garlic quick bread - gluten free!

Can you believe this is a gluten-free quick bread? Look at the RISE on that sucker! It was truly a thing of beauty--and tasty, too!

Once I read Steph's blog post, I had a craving I just couldn't shake. I was nice enough to let The H in on my craving (ok, I didn't want to eat a whole loaf myself!) and decided to make it gluten-free. Taking advantage of the fact that I work from home, I ran downstairs and whipped this up during my lunch break. We didn't go as far as Steph and make grilled cheese out of it--this time. :) Thanks, Steph! My slightly altered version appears below.

Gluten-Free Garlic Cheddar Quick Bread
originally from Stephanie Cooks

3 cups gluten-free flour blend (like Bob's Red Mill)
2 1/4 tsp xanthan gum (the gum-to-flour ratio is 3/4 tsp per cup)
4 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
1/4 cup Sugar in the Raw
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning, divided
1 1/2 cups milk (1%)
1/4 cup canola oil
1 egg

1. Preheat oven to 350* and grease a loaf pan. Combine flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, cheddar, sugar, garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning in a medium bowl.

2. In a smaller bowl, combine milk, oil, and egg. Stir wet ingredients into dry.

3. Pour into loaf pan and sprinkle remaining Italian seasoning over the top. Bake in preheated oven 55-60 minutes, or until a sharp knife inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out clean.

4. Cool bread in pan for 10 minutes, then flip onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

I think this would be fantastic served with your favorite chili recipe... among other things!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Roasted root veggies

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. Sometimes I crave vegetables. Rich, hearty, steamy, soft, savory vegetables, roasted up or baked to sweet caramelized perfection.

So I made some for lunch. And boy, did they deliver! I cannot remember if I included a protein source other than the lovely local gouda I melted on top.

I found this little baking pan--maybe 6 inches square--at TJMaxx for an unbeatable price, and I was thrilled to use it for my veggies-for-one.

I intended to get two meals out of this. Oh, well.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Early winter blahs...

I'm so very tired of creating me-and-little-guy meal plans. You might think that'd be a good motivator to really knock some homers out of the park when The H was back in town, but I have to say just the opposite is true. When he's away, we get into a groove of eating out, eating leftovers, eating with friends, and then I find that I'm all too comfortable doing that by the time he's back under our roof. I know I'll feel better having a plan, so here's the bare bones of this week:

Sunday lunch - leftovers from Saturday's roast chicken and veggies; I'll make wild rice and peas to accompany

Sunday dinner - tacos with the in laws

Monday - homemade black bean soup

Tuesday - something with friends after running group, probably pizza

Wednesday - Indian food for lunch; leftovers for dinner (korma made with tofu/peas and a simmer sauce over rice, or take-out)

Thursday - wild rice chicken soup made with homemade stock

Friday - black bean burgers

Saturday - out, maybe with friends

I do have a great big list of *real* posts for you, I promise, but they're still in the draft stage. Anyone seen my motivation? :(