All posts in squash

Happy Day 4… To A New You!

Today was a whorl wind and it’s only getting windier… I just got home from my client’s house at 9pm having to write this post (scratch that) wanting to write this post and my camera is acting up… Anyway, today was a perfect example of the inspiration for todays topic…

How to have healthy food in your fridge all the time, that you only have to prep on Sunday, or whatever day works for you.  Making it super easy for you to just grab and reheat a healthy breakfast, lunch or dinner.
So, I had 3 hours between coming home from teaching classes at the gym and going to Marin to cook for clients in their home, to create, cook and photograph the 3 meals.

Not to mention I’m on 4 hours of sleep!  That Italian meetup happy hour I went to last night was a blast!  After 3 hours and 3 glasses of wine my Italian was flowin like a native and I ended up at an Italian restaurant in North Beach with 8 bello Italian men 🙂 So far I’m  LOVIN meetup!

Crustless Quiche

Here’s an example of something you can make on Sunday and they will keep 4 days in the fridge.
The Combination possibilities are endless.  My mom taught me how to make these crustless quiches, and she would make them in muffin tins.
Broccoli and eggs go really well together.  I did spinach and tomatoes because that’s what’s on hand.
So, chop up your veggies and place them in the dishes.  Beat eggs and pour it over veggies.  Bake and you now have crustless quiches all week long.
It takes 5 minutes to assemble and 15 minutes to bake at 350.

Roast Acorn Squash Stuffed with Qunioa and Beans and Sprinkled with Toasted Walnuts

I love stuffing vegetables.  Acorn squash, eggplant and portobellos are my favorite.
They freeze really well and reheat really wonderfully.
I chose the acorn squash because they are amazing just by themselves.
Rice and chickpeas make a great combo, along with the pesto kale (that you’ve already made) and chopped nuts on top.
It is just as easy to make 1 acorn squash as it is to make 4 halves.  So why not just make 4. Why not make 12 crustless quiches.  It’s just as easy and it saves you time during the week.
They pack great and reheat really well at work.  Super filling and satisfying too.

Black Bean, Sweet Potato and Spinach Patties

These are A-mazing, I’m going to tute my own horn for a second here.  I made up the recipe and they are freakin fabulous.  So moist inside ad they have that crunch on the outside because I put them in gluten free bread crumbs before pan frying them and baking them.
So, really easy… black bean, steamed spinach and sweet potatoes and you already have your whole grain in the fridge. Cumin, grama masala and a little cayanne for a kick and some fresh squeezed lime.  Add 2 eggs, mix it all together and voila!
And now you have 8 patties.
Place on the slaw that you already have ready to go in the fridge.  Mix with a little lime juice too.
Cabbage does not get enough good credit.  It actually provides tons of Vitamin K and C, B6, folate and magnesium….just to name a few.  You can read up here.
Top with Tahini Sauce.  Typically Tahini sauce is made with lemon and water, but we’re using limes because we squeezed in the limes in the patties and slaw.  Plus sesame seeds.
So again, we are pairing the sweet potato in the burger with the sesame tahini because that’s the vitamin A and zinc combination that is really powerful for your body.

So there you have it.  Todays 3 meals that can be made on Sunday.  I know we’re al busy and we don’t want to be cooking for 3 hours every day, so just cook for 3 hours on Sunday.  And you know what, hey, you might have the same lunch all week, but that’s fine 🙂 that’s how you stay healthy.  And then you switch it up the next week.

Spaghetti Squash Primavera

Ok, I promise, just 2 more squash recipes and then I’ll stop with the squash overload!

This is so simple and not to mention, super filling for hardly any calories 🙂
Slice and scoop seeds
Cut side down and prick with a fork

Scrape out the inside with a fork

Spaghetti Squash
Any Vegetables you want:
Broccoli, Carrots, Mushrooms, Bell Peppers, chopped
Can of Diced Tomatoes
Spinach, roughly chopped
Fresh basil, roughly chopped
Parmesan Cheese
Preheat the oven to 350
Cut the Squash and scoop put the seeds
place cut side down and prick with a fork
Bake for 35-40 minutes
Meanwhile, make the simple Primavera sauce
In a large non stick skillet, heat the EVOO
Cook the onion until translucent
Add the vegetables and cook until tender
Stir in Canned tomatoes and mix well, simmer for 5 minutes
Stir in the spinach, cook for 2 minutes
Stir in Basil
Using a fork, scrape the fresh from the inside of the Squash
Put into a serving bowl and top with the primavera sauce and parmesan cheese
Note: You can add ground meat to make this a little heavier. Add the meat after the onion.


Acorn Squash Risotto

I just read that It is possible to make risotto in a dutch oven! Wow, talk about much simpler and less hands on time.

Until I experiment with that… here’s a risotto recipe cooked the traditional way… 30 minutes of standing over the pot adding broth a little bit at a time while stirring continuously…
Time consuming, but delicious and worth every minute.

I am O-bsessed with acorn squash, but you can use butternut squash instead. Butternut squash can be found in stores pre-cut.
Serves 6
6 cups vegetable broth, low sodium
1 onion, finely chopped
3 cups acorn squash, peeled and chopped
2 cups Arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
2 T unsalted butter
1/3 cup grated Parmigiano
Simmer the broth in a large stock pot
In a heavy, large saucepan, heat the oil
Cook the onion until translucent
Add the squash and mix well for a few minutes
Add the rice and toss to coat
Add half of the wine and stir until absorbed
Add the stock 1 ladle at a time, stirring after each addition until the liquid is absorbed
Continue until you have used all the stock
Add the remaining wine and stir until the rice is al dante, a total of about 20 minutes
Stir in butter and Parmigiano cheese

Butternut Squash, Corn and Leek Gratin

I can’t believe how long it takes me to post recipes.

Squash is already out of season, but it is my favorite vegetable (in all verities) so I figure why not share a few more as well share a few more wonderful squash recipes…
Gratins are great to make when cooking for a crowd! Delicious, hot, cheese, savory and can be made ahead, everyone wins!

This recipe is adapted from one of my favorite vegetable cookbooks!
Fast, Fresh and Green, By Susie Middleton
1 T unsalted butter
1 cup bread crumbs
1 medium leek, diced, white and light green parts
1 clove garlic minced
2 ears corn kernels
fresh black pepper
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup vegetable broth
1/2 lemon zest
1 t thyme fresh, chopped
2 1/2 cups butternut squash, cubed
1/3 cup parmesan cheese
Preheat 400
Grease a shallow dish, about 5-6 cups, with 1/2 t of butter
In a small bowl combine the bread crumbs, olive oil and a pinch of salt, set aside
In a bowl, combine the heavy cream and broth
Add the lemon zest, thyme and salt and ground pepper, set aside
In a medium skillet melt the remaining butter over medium low heat.
Add a pinch of salt and the leeks, cook, stiring until softened, about 5 minutes
Add the garlic
Add the corn and fresh pepper and salt, stir well, cook 2-3 minutes
Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool for a few minutes
Add the squash to the corn/leek mixture and mix well
Transfer to the gratin dish and spread evenly
Sprinkle with Cheese
Pour the liquid mixture evenly over the vegetables
Sprinkle with bread crumbs
bake for 40-45 minutes, until it is a deep golden and the squash is tender.
The juices will be bubbling below the surface of the vegetables, leaving brown bits of heaven in a line around the edges of the pan.
Yuuuum enjoy! I know you will!

Breakfast Fit for A Queen

Oatmeal in a Squash Bowl

Have I mentioned I’m in love with squash?
I dread the day they are no longer in season… :o(

I made this jumbo breakfast one morning after a big workout, but go ahead, indulge yourself anytime with this delicious oatmeal in a squash bowl!

Everything you need in a well rounded post-workout breakfast: whole grains, fruit, veggies, omega-3, electrolytes and protein
Serves 2
Acorn Squash
1/4 cup oats
1/4 cup quinoa
1 cup coconut water
1 apple peeled and chopped
1 T flaxseeds
2 t cinnamon
(honey, for some optional sweetness)
A handful of chopped nuts
Preheat oven to 350
Cut squash in half, seed the squash, place cut-side down on a cookie sheet and bake 30-40 minutes.
Meanwhile, rinse the quinoa and add to a sauce pan with the oats, coconut water, apple and flaxseeds.
Bring to a boil, simmer partially covered for about 10 minutes.
Stir in cinnamon (honey)
Divide the oatmeal into the acorn squash halves and top with chopped nuts

Nutritional info:
Cals: 306, Fat: 4, Chol: 0, Sodium: 30 (from coconut water- natural electrolyte, great for post workouts), Carbs: 65, Fiber: 12, Protein: 7, Sugar: 14

Butternut Squash with Brown Butter, Crispy Sage, Pecan & Quinoa Pilaf…

…It’s a mouth full- Literally!

’tis the season to eat SQUASH

breakfast, lunch, side dish or dinner…
bake, roast, steam, stuff or mash…
The possibilities are endless

Since August I have eaten squash at least 3 times a week… I know, 5 months later I am just now deciding to write about it.
My favorites are Acorn, Butternut and Spaghetti Squash.

Mindee’s beautiful blue and white China, classy.

This Sunday my cousin and I took a stroll to our lovely neighborhood Farmer’s Market at Fort Mason– and it was here that I came across these adorable little baby size butternut squash.

To help understand the petit-ness of the squash, I served them on 6 inch plates.

Because butternut squash does not have a very large opening in the middle with seeds (see photo below) you will have to scoop out extra to make a larger space, big enough to fill with your yummy pilaf. Leaving about 1 inch of the “meat” around all sides.


Butternut Squash (or acorn squash)
1/4 cup quinoa
1 T butter
A few fresh sage leaves chopped
A handful of pecans, chopped

Preheat the oven to 375
Cut the Squash lengthwise
Scoop out the seeds and using a knife, make an even larger opening.
Place cut side down on a baking sheet and prick many times with a fork (this allows steam to escape when baking)
Bake for 35-40 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook the quinoa.
Rinse the quinoa well before adding to a sauce pan. Add double the amount of water as quinoa, and a pinch of salt to the sauce pan of quinoa, cover and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to a simmer, partially covered, cook for 15 minutes- viola!

For the good stuff:
Add the butter to a small skillet, melt and let burn a little, add a pinch of salt sage and pecans.
Cook for a minute until sage and nuts become fragrant.
Add the Quinoa to the pan, coat and mix well with the butter.

Stuff the baked squash with the warm quinoa pilaf and top with a pecan half for a little extra touch.

If I were making these for a crowd (or men) I’d probably serve skirt steak and sauteed dark leafy greens too. But for my cousin and me, this was plenty for dinner.

These last a few days in the fridge. Today after the gym I reheated my last half in the oven for about 30 minutes at 300 while I was in the shower- and viola- lunch is served :o)
Not to mention, this is a good source of full protein after a workout.


Buttenut Squash & Bulger

grain, nuts, squash, vegan 1 Comment

Butternut squash is fantastic this time of year. Not only is it full of vitamins and minerals but it’s tasty and beautiful too. Walnuts, browned butter and sage go nicely with butternut squash too! I then decided to go with bulger as my grain to pull it all together- yum yum!

Slicing butternut squash, peeling it and seeding it can me tedious and exhausting, therefore many grocery stores sell butternut squash pre chopped- this is what I used
I decided to layer this dish- purely for esthetics. But, this dish tastes delightful anyway you serve it.
Also, i was making this dish vegan but feta would go well with this if you’d like to add a chesse
3 cups of chopped Butternut squash
1/2 an onion sliced
1 cup of uncooked Bulger
i couple Tablespoons of butter- I used Earth Balance
A few fresh sage leaves
A handful of roughly chopped walnuts
Preheat 400
Roast butternut squash with the onion in a pan with a little bit of olive oil and salt and pepper- about 30 minutes depending on size of pieces.

Meanwhile Cook the bulger in a pot of water according to directions. Bulger/water ratio is 2 to 1. Takes only about 15 minutes to cook.
Chop a few leaves of sage.
Brown the butter in a pan and add the sage leaves. Cook until they become soft- 3 minutes.
Combine all the ingredients, add a little S&P and enjoy!