Cauli’ N Cheese

As for many people, Mac n’ Cheese was always a comfort food in my house when I was little. And so, I wanted to take a crack at making a more grown-up version. Therefore I eliminated the cartoon-shaped noodles and replaced them with (you know me) cauliflower!And added some sun-dried tomatoes to complete the look. Very classy and mature, if I must say ;)

Not to say kids won’t like this too. I’m sure if I had been exposed to this when I was little, I would have deemed this comfort-like food as well!

Cauli’ N CheeseCauli’ N Cheese

Ingredients:

4 cups cauliflower, chopped into small florets 

2/3 cup plain yogurt 

1/2 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1/2 cup shredded provolone cheese

1/2 tsp paprika 

1/2 tsp garlic powder 

salt and pepper, to taste

sun-dried tomatoes 

Directions: 

Steam cauliflower until you can pierce it with a fork. Set aside. 

Combine yogurt, cheeses, paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a pot (Note: make sure to do this before placing over heat). Place over low heat and stir constantly until cheese has melted. Take off heat, stir in desired amount of sun-dried tomatoes, and pour over steamed cauliflower. 

Slow Cooker Apple and Onion BBQ Chicken

To keep costs at a relatively reasonable rate, my family and I try to eat in while on vacation. This can be hard when we all have different plans and guests over and whatnot. Especially when we’re on the beach all day. 

So, this recipe was put to use this week to feed a bunch of people as they came and went. Since it’s a slow cooker, I was able to start it up before I headed down to the beach and come back with it almost complete. 

Plus, it wasn’t too laborious on my arm (still getting used to the cast!)

Oh, and another thing I loved about this? You get a side dish of BBQ apples and onions, a combination that tastes surprising good together!

Slow Cooker Apple and Onion BBQ ChickenSlow Cooker Apple and Onion BBQ Chicken

Ingredients: 

4 lbs organic chicken drumsticks 

2 cup BBQ sauce (I used Bill’s Best Organic BBQ Sauce) 

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce

2 onions, chopped 

2 apples, peeled and cut into 1 inch-cubed pieces

4 garlic cloves, minced 

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker (don’t worry if it’s filled to the top- it’ll shrink as it cooks.) Put on low and let cook for 5 hours. Remove chicken. With a slotted spoon, scoop up remaining onions and apples, drain of excess sauce, and place in its own bowl to serve as a side dish. 

Zucchini Mash

This week has been full of new and challenging events for me. 

On Monday, I decided to go on a bike ride to celebrate the finish of my summer classes. Two minutes into the ride, my front tire hit a pipe hole that was left uncapped. As a result, I did a flip over the handlebars and got some nice road rash and bruises all up my body. My wrist also hurt a bit. But because I’m stubborn, I refused to go to the doctors.

Fast forward to later that night and I had a painful and swollen hand that I could barely move :(

I gave in and went to the hospital the next night… and left with a bulky cast that I now have to sport for the next 6-10 weeks!

And just in time for vacation too.

Guess I can now say I’ve broken a bone! 

So, this week I’ve realized just how much I rely on 2 functioning hands. Who knew opening a lid, buttoning pants, washing a dish, and packing a bag could be so difficult? 

Making food has also become challenging for me. HOWEVER, with the help of my food processor, I was able to make this zucchini mash :) 

I’m thinking simple recipes are going to become a theme for my blog for the next few weeks…

Zucchini Mash Zucchini Mash 

Ingredients: 

Zucchini, coined  

1/4 cup plain yogurt

salt and pepper 

1/2 tbsp garlic powder 

1/2 tbsp onion powder

1/2 tbsp chili powder 

1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded 

Directions: 

Place zucchini in a food processor and pulse until in small pieces (stop before it becomes mush!). Let sit for 5 minutes and then drain out excess water. Transfer 2 cups of zucchini to a pot and add yogurt and spices. Cook on low for 10 minutes, stirring every so often. Mix in mozzarella cheese before serving. 

Red Pepper Sauce over Spaghetti Squash

I’m finally feeling a huge sense of relief. Yesterday I finished up with my summer classes AND took my Praxis II test. Now I know a bunch of math, science, social studies, and english stuff that I’m ready to forget! 

Just kidding… 

kind of…

And now that I don’t have any homework or studying for the next month, I have time to experiment in the kitchen! Already I’ve made several things that I’ve been inching to try. The first being:

Red Pepper Sauce over Spaghetti Squash Red Pepper Sauce over Spaghetti Squash 

Ingredients: 

1 large spaghetti squash 

1 tbsp olive oil 

1 onion, chopped 

3 garlic gloves, minced 

1 tsp dried rosemary 

1/2 cup chicken broth 

4 oz goat cheese 

1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese 

1/2 cup plain, whole milk yogurt 

1 cup roasted red peppers (from a jar) 

4 cups fresh spinach 

1/2 cup black olives, drained, rinsed, and roughly chopped 

salt and pepper, to taste 

Directions: 

Cut squash in half and remove its seeds. Place face-down on an aluminum foiled-pan and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Afterwards, allow to cool and then run a fork over insides, pulling up spaghetti-like strands of squash. Place strands in a large bowl and set aside. 

Heat olive oil over low heat in a deep skillet. Add in and sauté onion and garlic for 10 minutes. Sprinkle in rosemary and cook for 1 minute before adding chicken broth and cheeses. Stir until cheeses have melted. Turn off heat, add in yogurt and peppers, and blend ingredients with an immersion blender (You could also temporarily transfer the ingredients to a food processor/blender!) until sauce is a light red color. Turn heat back on and add in spinach. Cover with a lid and allow spinach to wilt, stirring every so often. Add in olives, salt and pepper. Pour over spaghetti squash and stir to combine. 

Baked Eggplant Fries (Paleo)

I’ve been to the beach a lot this summer. This, of course, means I’ve also been on the NJ boardwalk.

And have been assaulted by all the delicious-smelling foods. 

Now, I might not want to eat said food, but I’m not gonna lie, it smells good! 

Case in point: french fries. Boardwalk food or not, I rarely like the taste. Yet, their smell is ever so alluring…

So, I decided to make my own fries that would taste yummy to me. And might I say, they are ever so addicting. 

And delicious-smelling :)

Baked Eggplant Fries Baked Eggplant Fries 

Ingredients:

1 eggplant 

Salt 

1/3 cup coconut flour 

3 eggs

2 tbsp water 

1 cup almonds 

4 tsp garlic powder 

2 tsp basil 

2 tsp oregano 

2 tsp thyme 

1 tsp rosemary 

Salt and pepper 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 and grease baking pans. Cut eggplant into fry-sized pieces, place in a single layer on the baking pans, and sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 15 minutes to sweat.

Meanwhile, spread coconut flour in a bowl*. Set aside.

Whisk together eggs and water in another small bowl*. Set aside. 

Grind almonds into very fine pieces in a food processor. Transfer to a third bowl* and mix in garlic powder, basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Take the eggplant and place in coconut flour until coated. Next, dunk in the egg bowl until wet. Finally, roll in the almond mixture until completely coated. Return to the baking pan and repeat until all eggplant fries are “dressed.”

Place in the oven and bake for 12 minutes. Take out, roll eggplant to its opposite side (I found rolling to be easier than flipping) and bake for another 10 minutes. Serve! 

*When I first made these, I took each individual eggplant fry and transferred it from bowl to bowl. Although this method works very well, it is time consuming. However, taking a handful of fries at a time, placing them into a bowl WITH A LID, and shaking them up until they are covered in coconut flour/egg/almonds speeds up the prep time. 

Baked Eggplant Fries

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