Introducing Creativity To The Alternative Diet: Many of us have segued from traditional dietary lifestyle to alternative dietary lifestyles, i.e. Gluten free, Vegan, Grain free, Real food, etc. What are we discovering?? These recipes are NOT mediocre!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

squash and parsnip pasta

Honestly, I tried this one with MUCH reservation and was right,. not my favorite. Having said that...KATRINA LOVES!!!!! LOVES THIS!!! I will be making this again and often i think! It is a great recipe, super easy, and fairly healthy! She is for the most part against eating meat (silly child) and LOVES squash so this was a hands down kid approved fav! I on the other hand am not a squash fan and I hate parsnips so i am certain that is the only reason I wasn't blown away by this. It smelled delish! The other thing I loved about this is that it didn't separate when reheating the leftovers. I would love to experiment with this with different types of squash and see how it changes the recipe. Thanks Tisha for making my little girl soooooo happy! She begs for squash and now I know what to do with it!

Monday, January 17, 2011


Anybody ready for our next round? Make a comment to let me know who's in and who's out. We'll post the new schedule soon...

Thursday, January 13, 2011

MMMMM meatball review

This poor recipe! I know I rarely make any of our recipes EXACTLY as written and this was no exception. As some know I am in the process of packing for a move and clearing out ingredients and in that spirit I made these recipes tonight with a few alterations.

I enjoyed the dinner! I had the meatballs/carrot rice/ and added sauteed asparagus with onions and mushrooms. I thought it was super easy, very fast and satisfying. I don't think it was my favorite meatball recipe but I will certainly make it again. I also agree with the review that I was craving a sauce of some sort to accompany it, not at all because it was dry or needed extra moisture just for a that extra touch. I have a sauce in mind that I will try with this and if it adds to it then i will share with all!

So, for the meatballs, I didn't have fresh bread crumbs so used some out of the freezer. I used an all natural (pickaboo??) hot sauce, frozen cilantro, all white meat ground turkey, and I added dry onion as well as scallions. I mixed the meatballs up before work and cooked it for dinner. The extra time for flavors to mix was great! I did the rice as written.

So, what I would change? I think using veggie or chicken broth to cook the rice in would be fabulous. I also am tempted to replace the water for the bread crumbs with soy sauce and then omit the salt. I think I would add a hint of ginger as well. Thanks for the recipe! I love new takes on meatballs!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Asian Meatballs Review (Severns)

WOW! I really wanted to start my post with that word.

This recipe is unlike any meatball recipe I have ever made. I will most definitely make these again. This time (in Oregon) Mom and I teamed up and got some help from Victor also. We followed the recipe exactly and served the meatballs up with the carrot rice - and the table went silent. I did wish for a bit of a sauce or even just a bit of goo so I think next time I will experiment with the drippings. I really don't even want gravy just a little something.

On a side note, my mom is allergic to gluten so we used some crumbs from a left over gluten free biscuit and there wasn't much difference. It certainly didn't stop Victor from eating the remainder of gluten free meatballs!

Chili and Beer Bread Review (Severns)

Last week when we were in Oregon Eva and I teamed up to make these two recipes. We were slightly short on time and responsible for 4 children so instead of the ideal situation in which we worked together on both recipes, we divided and we conquered! Both recipes were very good and I will most likely make both of them again.

I am the one who made the bread and really stuck to the recipe. The one thing that differed was (due to tight scheduling) we did not allow the bread to cool at all after it came out of the oven. As a result it fell apart in large pieces when we attempted to slice it. But other than that it was perfect, delicious and GONE!

The chili exceeded my expectations. Eva stuck to the recipe and it was very tasty. I love that you can taste the beer in it. I'll let her give the details of which beer she used. I am not much of a chili fan however I will use this recipe next time Andy requests chili. Oh, we ate it right after making it but Andy ate it the next day and of course it was much better. Yumm!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Butternut Squash & Parsnip Baked Pasta

Happy New Year everyone! I wanted to share my recipe with you, a different take on pasta from Cooking Light magazine. I haven't made it in a while, but it has been on my mind - especially as I have seen cubed butternut squash in the stores lately - a nice shortcut to preparing this meal. I enjoy finding recipes that are hearty and filling without always having meat. I hope you and your families like this one!

Butternut Squash & Parsnip Baked Pasta

Serves 4

1 TBL olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups (1/2 inch) cubed peeled butternut squash (I either buy pre-cubed/peeled squash or bake my squash in the oven and dice it after it has softened up. I find peeling and slicing a raw squash to be a nearly impossible feat!)
1 cup chopped parsnip
1 TBL chopped fresh or 1 tsp dried sage
1 TBL chopped fresh or 1 tsp dried parsley
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp salt, divided
2 cups uncooked penne pasta
1/2 cup (2 oz.) grated parmesan cheese, divided
Cooking spray
1 1/2 TBL butter
2 TBL all-purpose flour
1 cup 1% low-fat milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Heat oil in a nonstick skilled over medium-high heat. Add onion, red pepper, and garlic; saute 3 minutes. Add squash and parsnip; saute 10 minutes. Stir in sage, parsley, nutmeg, allspice, 1/4 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp black pepper; remove from heat.

Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid. Combine squash mixture, pasta, and 1/4 cup cheese in an 11X7" baking dish coated with cooking spray, tossing gently to combine.

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour; cook 3 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add milk; cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk. Gradually add reserved cooking liquid; cook 2 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper.

Pour milk mixture over pasta mixture; sprinkle with 1/4 cup cheese. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes (I found mine was done in 20) or until lightly browned.