Suburban Pioneers

The Adventures and Misadventures of Homesteading in 21st-Century America

Lauren: Squashpuppies: A Yellow Squash Recipe June 23, 2014

Filed under: Food & Cooking,Gardens & Compost,Real Food,Vegetarian Dinner,Veggies — lkcook20 @ 6:23 pm
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I have to admit that I don’t love yellow squash. It’s okay, but it doesn’t come close to how I feel about asparagus or beets.

But I love this yellow squashpuppies recipe, probably because it isn’t super healthy and you can’t really taste the yellow squash. Ha ha. Oh well. It’s super delicious!

Ingredients:

4 cups of oil (I used olive oil)

3-4 yellow squash, sliced (You’ll end up using 2 c. the squash puree)

2 eggs beaten

1 1/4 c. all purpose flour or 1 3/4 c. cup freshly-milled flour

1/3 c. cornmeal

2 tbsp. sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

1 1/3 tbsp. oil

2 tsp minced onion

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 c. cheese

 

Directions: 

1. Heat oil to 375 degrees in a small pot. (It takes a little longer to cook all of the squashpuppies in a small pot, but you can use less oil.)

2. Place squash in saucepan. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Simmer ten minutes, or until tender. Drain and puree. Let cool.

3. In a small bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt, oil, onion, garlic powder, and cheese. In a medium bowl, mix 2 c. of squash puree with the eggs. Add the dry mixture into the wet.

4. Drop by rounded spoonfuls into the hot oil. (It’s okay if the batter is a little on the runny side.) Cook until they are brown and crisp on one side. It should only take a couple minutes, then flip. Once they are brown and crisp on both sides, remove, and drain on paper towels.

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Sarah: Week 3 Planning + Quick Veggie Chili May 12, 2014

MealPlan Week3

Here’s the plan for the week, everyone!  The goal is quick and healthy with as much variety as possible (because we do eat leftovers for lunches, and there’s only so many times a month you can revisit the same meal!).

As a bonus: here’s my quick chili recipe, vegetarian, and ready in less than an hour.  Also–this is a super-mild chili recipe because I wanted to be sure Little Bear would eat it (she did…with her fingers).  I would normally have added a jalapeño into the sauté or added another 1/2-1 Tbsp. chili powder.  Also…I kind of think sweet potato would be amazingly delicious in here, but I had neither sweet potatoes nor the time to peel them.

Note: sometimes frozen/canned veggies are more tasty and healthier than eating off-season veggies, so it’s nice to have some recipes for not-so-fresh vegetables before the garden starts producing!

Quick Vegetarian Chili

It snowed today, yes, in May, so chili was good comfort food!

It snowed today, yes, in May, so chili was good comfort food!

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
2-3 cloves garlic
1 red pepper, chopped
1 Tbsp. chili powder (give or take)
1 large (32 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 can black beans, drained/rinsed
1/2 package frozen corn
pinch of paprika
1/2-1 tsp. salt
a few squirts of ketchup, to taste

Directions:

1. Heat olive oil and sauté onion.  When translucent, add garlic and chili powder (sautéing spices gives them extra flavor).

2. Add in red pepper and sauté for another few minutes. At this point, I added about a cup of veggie broth because it was leftover in my fridge and would have gone bad this week and I just hate to waste things, don’t you?  But I don’t think the veggie broth was fully necessary, so you can omit as you see fit.

3. Pour in can of tomatoes (with all the juices), add the beans, and dump in the corn.

4. Put in the spices and a little ketchup, taste-testing as you go and adding more or less as needed.  Bring it to a boil and then turn down to simmer.

5.  The longer you simmer, the better the flavor, but I found that it took me less than 15 minutes to put it all together and that a 30-minute simmer was enough to make it decently good.  Also, serve with cheese on top, because everything’s better with cheese, right?

 

Sarah: May Minestrone May 5, 2014

Why go out to Olive Garden when you can make minestrone just as delicious on your own stove?

Why go out to Olive Garden when you can make minestrone just as delicious on your own stove?

The Italians have been holding out on us, everyone.  I love minestrone soup, but I always imagined that each Italian family had a complex family recipe that took hours of simmering until it came to miraculous minestrone perfection.

This weekend, I had the epiphany that minestrone is really just the perfect excuse to use whatever leftover veggies happen to be in your house.  Family recipes notwithstanding, minestrone changes with the seasons according to what is ripe and ready.

Note: I made this in less than 45 minutes after a weekend away, while putting away groceries in the kitchen.  It’s not too difficult–the chopping is the only time-consuming part.

For a quick version at home, there are only about four essential ingredients.  The rest is a choose-your-own-adventure meal!  The other lovely thing about this is that you can make it dairy or gluten free by omitting the cheese on top or the pasta noodles.

Minestrone

Four essential ingredients (which you probably have already in your cupboard or fridge):

  • 1 large can (32 oz.) diced tomatoes
  • 4 c. broth (of any kind, really)
  • 1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  • salt & pepper to taste (I did 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper)

Ingredients I put in my soup tonight (because they needed to be used up or happened to be on sale at the store today):

  • 1/2 a purple onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 small red potatoes
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 1 yellow squash
  • 1 zucchini
  • a handful of penne pasta
  • a can of beans (I used a tricolor mix, but you can use white, pinto, kidney, whatever)
  • parmesan cheese
1.  Chop, chop, chop the veggies (we like them in small pieces in our house--otherwise, Keith calls it "lazy soup").

1. Chop, chop, chop the veggies (we like them in small pieces in our house–otherwise, Keith calls it “lazy soup”).

2. Sautee the onion until translucent, then add the garlic.  Add other veggies in order of cooking time--potatoes went first for me, then asparagus.

2. Sautee the onion in olive oil until translucent, then add the garlic. Add other veggies in order of cooking time–potatoes went first for me, then asparagus.

3. Next came squash.  After it had all sautéed a bit, I added the broth.

3. Next came squash. After it had all sautéed a bit, I added the broth.

4.  Then comes the can of tomatoes (with the tomato juice--why pour that down the drain when it adds to the soup?).

4. Then comes the can of tomatoes (with the tomato juice–why pour that down the drain when it adds to the soup?).  Stir in the spices now, too, so that it all boils together.

6.  During the last 10 minutes or so of cooking, add the beans and the pasta.  Serve when the pasta gets soft, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese…because cheese makes everything better.

6. After it all boils, let the veggies soften a bit, but if you’re adding pasta, don’t let them get too mushy.  During the last 10 minutes or so of cooking, add the beans and the pasta. Serve when the pasta gets soft, and sprinkle with parmesan cheese…because cheese makes everything better.

 

Lauren: Veggie Frittata: Dinner in 30 minutes or less May 3, 2014

Frittatas have become a weekly staple in our house. Why? Because they’re quick and easy. And they’re a good way to use up eggs and random veggies lingering in the fridge. Our four chickens lay just about 4 eggs a day, 7 days a week. Math isn’t really my thing (English major here!), but I know that comes out to over 2 dozen a week, give or take about, um, 4. . . .  2 dozen eggs a week means at least one frittata for dinner. End of story.

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Ingredients:

1/2 onion, diced

2 tbsp. oil

8 eggs

1/2 c. milk

1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped or 1 tsp dried basil

1 tbsp parmasan cheese

salt and pepper to taste

1 red pepper, diced

1/2 c. frozen corn

1 cup chopped spinach

2 tbsp. butter

1/2- 1 c. of cheese

Note: You can add whatever veggies or leftovers you have to your frittata. I just happened to have pepper, corn, and spinach. Potatoes are particular good. I would consider the basil, butter, and cheese essential though. And the eggs, of course!

 

Directions:

1. Set oven to the broil setting. Heat oil in a large skillet. When warm, add the diced onion. Cook until onion becomes soft and transparent.

 

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2. While the onion is cooking, crack the eggs in a bowl and add milk.

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Play the game of what shape is the milk. I see a mouse. What do you see?

 

3. Add basil, parmesan, salt ,and pepper to eggs. Stir to combine. (Don’t skip the basil. I think it adds so much flavor to the eggs!)\

 

4. Add red pepper to the onions. Cook for a few minutes. Add corn. Cook for a couple minutes. Then add the spinach. Cook just until the spinach wilts.

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Ooo colors!

 

5. Once the spinach wilts, add the 2 tbsp of butter. Butter makes eggs taste even better and helps to keep them from sticking to the pan.

 

6. Add egg mixture to skillet. Cook it like an omelet, pushing the edges in and tilting the pan so egg liquid runs onto the pan. Cook until the edges are set. Don’t worry about the top too much; it will finish up in the oven.

 

7. Put the whole skillet in the oven for a couple minutes until the top is cooked. Watch it so it doesn’t burn.

 

8. Once the top is no longer runny, add the cheese. Put the frittata back in the oven until the cheese is slightly browned and a little bubbly.

 

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9. After removing the frittata from the oven, slice it into eights. I also recommend leaving a pot holder on the skillet handle so your husband doesn’t accidentally grab the handle and burn himself.

 

10. Enjoy!

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Lauren: Spiced Stuffed Acorn Squash December 9, 2012

DSCN1124I’ll admit that I’m not a huge fan of plain baked acorn squash, but I love it stuffed with couscous, garbanzo beans, carrots, peppers, raisins, and apples. Underneath all those delicious ingredients, the acorn squash gives just a hint of sweetness in every bite. Yum!

This recipe is very flexible. Feel free to substitute other fruits or veggies, and if you don’t have some of the spices on hand, omit them or use other ones.

Ingredients:

1 tbsp butter                                                                              1 tsp cumin

4 acorn squash                                                                           1/2 tsp coriander

2 tbsp olive oil                                                                            1/2 tsp turmeric

2 cloves garlic, minced                                                                1/2 tsp cinnamon

2 carrots, chopped (small)                                                           1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/2 cup red pepper, chopped                                                     1/4 tsp ginger

1 can garbanzo beans, drained                                                   1/4 tsp salt

1/2 cup raisins                                                                           1 14 ounce can chicken or vegetable broth

1/2 cup peeled, chopped apple                                                  1 cup uncooked whole wheat couscous

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Cut squash in half. Place cut side down on a baking sheet. Bake 30 minutes or until tender. After removing the squash from the oven, spread butter on squash.

3. Meanwhile, heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, carrot, and pepper. Cook approximately five minutes. Add garbanzo beans, raisins, and apples. Stir in cumin, coriander, turmeric  cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt.DSCN1122

4. Pour the broth into the skillet and mix in the couscous. Cover and turn off heat. Let sit for five minutes. Then stuff squash halves with the skillet mixture. Serve and enjoy.

 

 
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