One-Pan Lemon Chicken and Brussels Sprouts

 

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One pan chicken and Brussels sprouts, with a side of roasted butternut squash.

A big thank you to Sara Wallace for inspiring this meal!  Sara and I met as freshmen on the Williams College rowing team, and became fast friends during our first Winter Study together.  She has a thirst for adventure and has the energy for any fun, new diversion!  Somehow, we have yet to cook together, but in a recent email she told me she regularly makes one-pan chicken and Brussels sprouts.  I found a recipe online on a lovely gluten-free cooking blog called “So… Let’s Hang Out“, and made minor modifications to the ingredients.  I added butternut squash to my meal because I have been loving the roasted squash flavor lately.  Chili powder adds another layer of flavor to the naturally sweet butternut squash – the combination is so good that I find myself “taste-testing” straight from the baking sheet!  The chili powder/squash concept comes from “The Whole30 Cookbook”, by Melissa Hartwig.

Alex and I shared this one-pan wonder for an easy weeknight meal.  He had his chicken over leftover brown rice, which soaked up the lemon juice and chicken broth.  I am still following Whole30 most days, so I just increased my Brussels sprouts pile for extra carbohydrates.  The great thing about this meal is that you will have 30 minutes of down-time while the chicken and Brussels sprouts finish in the oven, and cleanup is a breeze.  I used pre-cut butternut squash and Brussels sprouts to speed up the process, and thanks to that shortcut, this dinner took about 45 minutes to prepare from start to finish.

Recipe

One-Pan Lemon Chicken and Brussels Sprouts – serves 2 to 4

We experimented with using both chicken breasts and thighs in our first pan.  You can also use skin on, bone-in chicken, but if you have large pieces, use a meat thermometer to make sure chicken is fully cooked.  Cast-iron works especially well for this meal, because it makes your chicken nice and crispy.

You will need:

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  1. 1 large butternut squash, or one container of pre-cut squash (thank you, Whole Foods!)
  2. 1-2 T olive oil
  3. 2 t chili powder
  4. 2 t salt, 1 t pepper
  5. 1 T coconut oil
  6. salt and pepper to taste
  7. 2 pounds of chicken breasts or thighs, or both
  8. 1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved
  9. 1 T olive oil
  10. juice of one lemon
  11. 1/4 C chicken stock

Optional: serve over brown rice.

Steps:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Combine butternut squash pieces with olive oil, chili powder, salt and pepper on a large rimmed baking sheet.
  3. Roast for 30-40 minutes, stirring at least once to make sure pieces are not sticking to the baking sheet.
  4. While butternut squash is roasting, prepare your Brussels sprouts.  Wash and halve sprouts, and combine with olive oil, salt and pepper in a large bowl.  Mix thoroughly to coat, set aside.
  5. Heat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit (the butternut squash can handle the heat for a little while!).
  6. Pat chicken dry with a paper towel, and season with salt and pepper to taste, on both sides.
  7. Heat an oven-safe skillet over medium to medium-high heat, and add coconut oil.
  8. When oil is hot, add chicken to your pan in a single layer, and do not move for 6-8 minutes.  You want the chicken nice and browned on the bottom before flipping.
  9. When the first side has browned, flip chicken and continue cooking.
  10. Next, add Brussels sprouts, lemon juice and chicken stock, stirring to combine.  Scrape the bottom of your pan to loosen any browned bits.
  11. Carefully place your pan in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.  Your butternut squash should be done around the same time, but if it is starting to get too browned, you can remove the sheet pan so the pieces do not burn.  Simply return the pan to the oven when the chicken and sprouts have just a few minutes left to cook.

Sources:

Gina Marie. “One-Pan Crispy Chicken Legs & Brussels Sprouts {Gluten-Free & Paleo}.” So…Let’s Hang Out. N.p., 16 Apr. 2015. Web. 05 Apr. 2017.

Hartwig, Melissa. The Whole30 cookbook: 150 delicious and totally compliant recipes to help you succeed with the Whole30 and beyond. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2016. Print, page 65.

Race Weekend Ready with Cara Stawicki

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Fresh produce and hot poached eggs keep me satisfied all morning.

A couple of months ago, Cara Stawicki and I decided to collaborate on a post to reach both of our audiences.  Cara is also a lightweight rower, training for a spot in a World Championship boat as a member of the U.S. National Team.  You can read more about her rowing aspirations on her blog, which features monthly posts on our favorite topics: training, recovery, nutrition and sports psychology.  Despite not being able to link up in person on my recent East Coast visit, Cara and I decided to move forward with our bi-coastal collaboration and compared notes over FaceTime.  We both want to address a variety of concerns in many different travel scenarios, to ease the stress and uncertainty that can come with food preparation while traveling for races or spending a full day at the race course.  As with any race day recipes, I would recommend trying these foods during regular training periods to make sure they sit well with you!  We do not want you to try anything new on race day.  For an in depth look at navigating nutrition and travel, visit Cara’s latest post “On the Road: Nutrition, Mindset and Travel.”

This month, I have been experimenting with Whole30 recipes, so you will see many adaptations and substitutions to make my recipes Whole 30 compliant.  All of these recipes were taste-tested by my husband, Alex, who is not following the Whole30 guidelines, so I have notes to satisfy either preference.  It was especially fun to have him guess which ingredients I used in the smoothies and granola!  (Granola: “honey?” “nope!”, “oats?” “nope!”).  Read on for a variety of snacks and meals that require a varying degree of kitchen access: from make-ahead recipes to simple assembly meals to recipes that require a full-on stovetop and oven!


Recipe

Race Ready Granola – serves 12+

This recipe works great for race day, because you can easily make the granola ahead of time and take it with you to the course.  Feel free to play with your favorite flavor combinations here to achieve your ideal granola.  This granola recipe from A Traveling Wife is naturally grain-free, and uses nuts as a base.  I tweaked some ingredients to make my own favorite blend.  You could add oats if you would like, but keep a closer eye on the oven to make sure they brown and do not burn!  This recipe works best with a food processor to chop the nuts and combine ingredients.

You will need:

  1. food processor
  2. 2 cups unsalted almonds
  3. 1 cup unsalted walnuts
  4. 1/2 cup unsweetened dried goji berries (or substitute dried cranberries, ginger or raisins)
  5. 1/2 cup pitted dates
  6. 1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
  7. 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  8. 1 t cinnamon
  9. 1 t salt
  10. 1 t ground ginger
  11. about 2 t coconut oil

Steps:

  1. Soak nuts in water for an hour.  In a separate bowl, soak dried goji berries and dates in water for an hour.
  2. Preheat oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. After an hour, drain and rinse nuts.
  4. Combine all ingredients in your food processor, and pulse.
  5. Spread coconut oil on a lined cookie sheet (we used parchment paper).
  6. Spread granola mixture evenly across cookie sheet.
  7. Bake for 60.  Turn off heat and allow granola mixture to dry out in the oven for another 60 minutes.
  8. Lift up corners of parchment paper for easy granola removal.  Some granola may clump if not spread evenly, but it still tastes great!
  9. Save any leftovers in an air-tight container.

Recipe

Recovery Smoothie – serves 2

I love a smoothie for recovery after a hard effort, and this is especially great in the summer months!  Cool off, rehydrate and replenish with this nutrient-dense recovery powerhouse.  Bonus points: Alex thought it tasted like chocolate!  Feel free to add your favorite protein powder (“original” or chocolate would taste especially nice) or have a protein-filled snack to round out this recovery meal.

You will need:

  1. 1 T chia seeds, optional
  2. 2 cups frozen spinach
  3. 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
  4. 1/2 cup frozen lingonberries (or frozen blackberries or raspberries)
  5. 1/2 cup blueberries
  6. 1 and 3/4 cup almond milk
  7. 1/4 cup coffee
  8. 1 t turmeric
  9. 1 t cinnamon
  10. 1 t coconut oil
  11. 1 T almond butter
  12. 4 small, steamed beets

Steps:

  1. Set aside chia seeds in about 1/4 cup water while you prepare the rest of your ingredients.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a powerful blender and combine until smooth – the Vitamix smoothie setting works wonders with this recipe!
  3. Enjoy right away or store in the fridge for later consumption (beet juice may separate).

Recipe

Tuna Salad Two Ways – serves 2

I was not a big tuna salad lover until last November, when I branched out and tried a pre-packaged tuna salad snack – at the San Diego airport of all places!  I had previously avoided tuna salads because they smelled fishy, and I assumed they would taste fishy, too.  The San Diego salad was different because they mixed in diced green olives.  I tested the tuna salad on crackers, and continued to enjoy the tuna when my crackers ran out.  More recently, my sister, Liz, forwarded me a recipe for tuna salad, and suggested I add another ingredient or two for more flavor (Simply Recipes Avocado Tuna Salad).  I experimented with a diced green chile tuna salad and a green olive tuna salad; I will be hanging onto both options!  I also like adding carrot if I do not have celery on hand.

You will need:

  1. 5 oz canned tuna
  2. 2-3 T diced olives or diced green chiles
  3. 1/2 of an avocado
  4. 1/4 cup diced red onion
  5. 1/2 cup diced celery or carrot
  6. 2 t lemon juice
  7. 1 t lemon zest
  8. 1 T olive oil
  9. 2 T chopped cilantro
  10. salt and pepper, to taste

Steps:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. Serve on a bed of greens or a slice of toasted bread for a meal, or with crackers as a snack.

Recipe

Panzanella/Pozanella – serves 2

Panzanella is so easy to assemble, and requires just one pan and one burner, or a hot plate.  I made one serving of panzanella with two-day-old bread, as the original recipe called for, and a second serving with leftover breakfast potatoes to make it Whole30 compliant.  Alex and I love this recipe served warm, especially when we add peach.  The sweet and savory and spicy flavors marry really nicely after a day spent in the fridge.

I adapted this recipe from my beloved “Good and Cheap” cookbook, and you can find their recipe online as well: Spicy Panzanella.  I have enjoyed many recipes from “Good and Cheap”, and encourage you to consider buying the cookbook or downloading a PDF copy.  Visit Leanne Brown’s website to learn more.

You will need:

  1. 1 large cucumber, peeled and chopped into quarters, then diced
  2. 2-3 medium tomatoes, diced
  3. 1 juicy peach or plum, chopped
  4. salt and pepper
  5. 2 slices day-old bread, or about 1/2 cup of roasted potatoes or breakfast potatoes
  6. 1 jalapeño, finely chopped, with seeds removed for less spice
  7. 2 T chopped tomato
  8. juice of 1 lime
  9. 2 T olive oil

Steps:

  1. If you are using potatoes, roast bite-sized pieces in the oven first at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for about an hour.
  2. Set aside 2 T of your diced tomatoes to use in the dressing.  Combine chopped tomatoes and cucumbers in a large bowl.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to combine (salt will bring out the tomato and cucumber juices).  Set aside.
  3. Heat a small saucepan over medium heat and add a drizzle of olive oil.
  4. Sauté jalapeño for about one minute and then add your 2 tablespoons of diced tomato.  Stir to combine, and keep cooking until tomato juice is released.
  5. Sprinkle your dressing with salt and pepper, and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated.  Turn off the heat and return your tomato and jalapeño to your cutting board.
  6. Chop tomato and jalapeño as finely as possible and return to your pan with no heat.  Add lime juice and 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Add salt and pepper to taste to finish off your dressing.
  7. Add peach or plum to your cucumber and tomato mixture, followed by your dressing.  Stir to coat.
  8.  If you are making one panzanella and one pozanella, prepare produce and dressing and then divide into two bowls before adding bread/potatoes.  Add bread pieces or potatoes.  Stir to coat bread/potato pieces.  If you are using fresh bread, toast in the toaster or skillet for a minute or two before combining with your other ingredients.
  9. Serve warm or cool, to your liking.

Recipe

Poached Egg Recovery Feast – serves 1 or more 

I love eggs any way after a long row, but poached or hard-boiled eggs make for the easiest cleanup.  On February 19th, an email came from Well & Good with the tagline “The no-fail trick to making a perfectly poached egg” and, as a newbie-poacher, I was immediately intrigued.  Check out Well & Good’s article here.  I keep a couple hard-boiled eggs on hand to round out a snack or add to add more protein to a salad, so I started poaching eggs for my breakfast for something different.  This recipe requires one burner and one pot; your pot for poaching eggs will be much easier to clean than a scrambled egg pan and spatula!  Finally, poached eggs taste best when they are served hot, so make sure that the rest of your breakfast spread is ready to go before you start poaching eggs.  It only takes about 3 to 4 minutes for eggs to poach; any longer and you will completely cook the yolk, which is not the goal.  I like my eggs with a side of sweet potato to add extra carbs to my breakfast.

You will need:

  1. sweet potato
  2. 2 cups kale or other greens
  3. 1-2 t coconut oil
  4. 1/2 T apple cider vinegar or other vinegar (not red wine vinegar)
  5. eggs (2 or 3 per person)
  6. salt and pepper, to taste
  7. about 1/2 t cinnamon
  8. dried basil or parsley
  9. 1/4 avocado per person

Steps:

  1. Shortcut!  Rinse your sweet potato and wrap in a wet paper towel.  Poke several holes with a fork or knife.  Microwave for 4-5 minutes and then flip over and microwave for another 1-2, depending on size of your sweet potato.
  2. Heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium and sauté torn kale for about 5 minutes, or until you reach desired crispiness.  Set aside.
  3. Heat a pot of water over high heat until just boiling.  Turn heat down to about medium until you see a steady stream of champagne bubbles at the bottom of your pot.  If your pot has bubbles that are not rising, you need more heat.  Without a little bit of bubbles, your egg will sit at the bottom.
  4. Stir vinegar into pot of water.
  5. Crack an egg into a measuring cup and lower as close to the surface of your water as possible before pouring your egg into the pot.  Egg whites will come together as the egg poaches.
  6. Set a timer for 3 or 4 minutes and remove egg right away.  Use a ladle for easy egg removal, and set egg on a paper towel before plating.
  7. Serve on a bed of greens or sautéed kale.  Top with dried herbs if you have any on hand.  Cut your microwaved sweet potato in half and drizzle with 1 t liquid coconut oil.  Sprinkle with salt, pepper and cinnamon, to taste.  Add avocado to your meal for more satisfying, healthy fat.

Recipe

Team Dinner/Crowd Pleaser Butternut Squash Lasagna – serves 6

Lasagna is great if you have access to a kitchen while you are on the road.  You will need one pot and one burner or hot plate, and an oven.  I did not change this recipe much, but I am writing it out here to guide you through the butternut squash prep!  I also added mushrooms to my meat sauce, because we are big mushroom fans.  You can find the original recipe on Stupid Easy Paleo.

You will need:

  1. 2 medium butternut squash
  2. 2 t coconut oil
  3. 1 red or yellow onion, diced
  4. 3-5 garlic cloves, minced
  5. 1 lb ground chicken
  6. 1 t dried oregano
  7. 1/2 cup sliced green or black olives
  8. 4 oz white mushrooms, sliced
  9. 36 oz canned tomato sauce (Rao’s homemade tastes great)
  10. 4 oz tomato paste
  11. 4 eggs, beaten
  12. salt and pepper to taste

Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Microwave butternut squash for two minutes, then flip and microwave again for two more minutes.  This step will make it much easier to cut the squash.
  3. Place a large pot for your meat sauce over medium heat.  Add coconut oil and heat for about a minute before adding your chopped onion.  Sauté onion for about 5 minutes, or until just translucent.
  4. Add chicken, garlic and oregano and turn your heat up to medium-high.  Stir to combine ingredients, and sauté until chicken is completely cooked through.
  5. Next, add olives, tomato paste, tomato sauce and mushrooms.  Stir to combine and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  6. Let simmer over low heat while you chop butternut squash.
  7. Your butternut squash should be a little easier to cut because of the microwave step.  Cut the squash in sections about 3-4 inches wide, starting down from the stem.  Peel your squash one section at a time using your knife, and then set that section on its side to cut into rounds (or hexagons) about 1/8 of an inch thick.  You can find photos of this process in the gallery (above).
  8. Beat together eggs and set aside.
  9. In a lasagna pan, or two, start spreading out your first layer of butternut squash.  Avoid overlapping squash pieces, but try to fill the gaps as much as possible.  The squash will act as your pasta layer.  You may have to trim additional small pieces of squash to fill in the gaps.  Next, spread about 1 cup of meat sauce evenly across the squash layer.  Top with about 1/3 of your egg mixture.  Repeat the squash-sauce-egg mixture until you run out of ingredients.
  10. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until squash reaches desired tenderness.

Sources:

Bauer, Elise. “Avocado Tuna Salad Recipe.” Simply Recipes. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. (Tuna Salad)

Brown, Leanne. “Good And Cheap.” Good And Cheap. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. (Panzanella)

Gaudreau, Steph. “Butternut Squash Lasagna – Stupid Easy Paleo.” Stupid Easy Paleo. N.p., 27 Jan. 2017. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. (Lasagna)

Jenn. “Grain-free Granola [Whole30 and Paleo Friendly].” Grain-free Granola [Whole30 and Paleo Friendly]. N.p., 01 Jan. 1970. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. (Granola)

Siegel, Arianne. “The no-fail trick to making a perfectly poached egg.” Well Good. N.p., 24 Feb. 2017. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. (Poached Eggs)

 

 

 

 

 

Heavenly Hash: Sweet Potato and Sausage Breakfast Hash

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Sweet and savory flavors make for a complete brunch plate.

Happy National Heavenly Hash day!  I had no idea that was a thing to be celebrated, but I learned a little from Google this afternoon.  Here is our version of a Heavenly Hash, but you can find a recipe for the sweet treat or ice cream versions here and here (shoutout to Greylock dining hall for the greatest HH ice cream).

After a couple of months adjusting to Seattle life, it feels good to blog about cooking with friends!  The first time I tried this recipe was when Paul and Loretta came over for a potluck brunch back in November.  Paul walked in with a huge skillet full of sweet potato hash, and set it on the burner to reheat.  The end result was a rich, flavorful, filling and crave-worthy hash that I kept returning to for seconds and thirds.  When Paul and Loretta had some time off around the holidays, they came back for a weekday brunch, and Paul taught me his brother’s recipe for sweet potato hash.  This recipe makes many servings, which keep nicely in the fridge for two to three days, though I guarantee it will not last that long.  Alternatively, you can enjoy this versatile breakfast dish at any time of day!

During Loretta’s vacation, we did a lot of sculling and lifting together, and got hooked on eating recovery meals at Stone Way Cafe after training.  As holidays ended and normal schedules resumed, cafe visits decreased, but cravings for Stone Way creations persisted. Paul and I are both experimenting with recipes for a baked oatmeal dish that can satisfy Stone Way Cafe cravings.  Stay tuned!

Recipe

Sweet Potato Hash – serves 6 to 8

Credit for this recipe’s creation goes to Paul’s brother.  Thanks to Paul and Loretta for sharing this feast, and to Paul for writing up the recipe for me!  This recipe calls for apple, but we accidentally left the apple out and did not notice until we were finished eating.  Try using a fuji apple to start, for a crisp, sweet flavor.

You will need: 4c48b3dc-9555-4767-b72d-11cfee4731ca

  1. 2 medium sweet potatoes
  2. 1 medium onion (your choice – we used yellow)
  3. 1 medium or 2 small sweet peppers
  4. 1/2 lb Brussels sprouts
  5. 1 apple (your choice)
  6. 12 to 16 ounces Andouille sausage
  7. cooking oil
  8. salt and pepper to taste
  9. 4 eggs (optional)

Steps:

  1. Par cook the sausage in a large pan, just until sausages firm up on the outside a little bit, set aside and let cool.
  2. Dice the sweet potatoes to 1/4-1/2 inch cubes and sauté in the pan with oil for 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. While the potatoes cook, dice the onion and add to the pan, stirring into the potatoes.
  4. Remove bottoms from Brussels sprouts and cut down to 1/2 inch halves or quarters.  Add to pan.
  5. Dice sweet peppers to 1/2 inch pieces and add to pan.  Be sure to keep everything stirring for even cooking.
  6. Cut the sausage into 1 inch pieces and add to the pan, cooking the whole mixture until the sausage is cooked through (if using eggs, add them with the sausage).  Continue stirring until egg coats the mixture and cooks.  Remove from heat.
  7. Cut the core from the apple and dice into 1/4-1/2 inch pieces and stir in.  The apple should not cook and will add a crisp bite and sweet tongue to the dish.  Salt and pepper to taste.

Celery Root Mashed Potatoes

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Our Thanksgiving spread.

I love the flavor of celery root, and think it tastes great on its own.  Celery root, or celeriac, is the root that grows beneath celery stalks.  Last Thanksgiving, I volunteered to bring mashed potatoes to dinner, so I incorporated a couple of traditional Yukon Golds for a more familiar flavor.  Alex and I shared Thanksgiving dinner with Daniel, a friend from work, and his two young children.  We were joined by his long-time friend, Jessie, and savored a non-traditional menu.  Our meal did not stray from certain Thanksgiving themes – food, time spent together in the kitchen, board games and puzzles with family, and a leisurely gathering around the table for a variety of courses.  With the menu, we were a little more experimental and creative.  Before we arrived, Daniel spent the afternoon preparing delicious, crisp duck and a vegan pumpkin dessert.  Later on, Alex and I spent time playing games and puzzling (I am a huge puzzle fan!) with Daniel’s children.  Meanwhile, Daniel put the finishing touches on his signature “pink soup” (beets with vegan cream).  Before dinner time, he also prepared kale chips and fresh tostones – both of which barely made it to the dinner table!  Alex and I brought along rainbow carrot salad and my version of mashed potatoes.  We left the table feeling satisfied, but not overly stuffed, and returned to the floor for more puzzling.

Because of dietary restrictions, I made the celery root/mashed potatoes completely vegan for Thanksgiving, but feel free to try these at home with butter and milk or cream.  Next time I make this recipe, I am going to use just celery root and no potatoes.  Give it a try – you might not notice the difference!  Celery root tends to have a silkier texture, compared to the starchy texture of potato.  The two work well in combination.

 

Recipe

Celery Root Mashed Potatoes – serves 6 to 8

For this recipe, feel free to adjust quantities of milk and butter for your desired taste.  At home, we usually add a lot of butter to Yukon Gold potatoes, but I find that I need less butter to add flavor to celery root.

You will need: 38e74300-2559-48f6-bfc2-45cc45020ff5

  1. two giant celery roots (about 1 pound)
  2. four Yukon Gold potatoes (about 1 pound)
  3. 1 – 2 T olive oil
  4. 1 – 1.5 C soymilk (or milk)
  5. 2 – 4 T vegan butter (or butter)
  6. salt and pepper to taste
  7. optional: vegetable or chicken broth to thin leftovers

Steps:

  1. Cut off the root end of the celery first, so you have a flat surface to rest on.  Slice the gnarly bumps off the root with a small knife (this is much easier than using a peeler). Cut roots into approximately 1-inch cubes for even cooking.
  2. Peel potatoes.  Cube potatoes as well.
  3. Put celery root and mashed potatoes into two separate large pots, and cover with salted water.  Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer, checking for tenderness after about 15 minutes.  When both root vegetables are tender (about 15 minutes for potatoes and 20 minutes for celery root), drain water and combine celery root and potatoes into one large pot for mashing.
  4. Reduce heat to low.  Drizzle with olive oil and mash.
  5. Add butter and stir to combine.  Gradually add milk, one half cup at a time, until your potatoes reach desired thickness.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  We usually like a lot of pepper!
  6. Serve warm.  To reheat your mash, add leftovers to a pot over low heat, and revive with a little splash of vegetable broth, chicken broth or more milk.

Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Turkey Bacon Pasta

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The cooked egg coated the pasta and other ingredients nicely, and I was happy to have the extra protein.

I pulled this recipe together after a long morning of rowing workouts.  I dreamt up this recipe when I found leftover turkey bacon, lemon and Brussels sprouts that needed to be used, and combined those ingredients with the bowtie pasta I was craving!  I have cooked a similar recipe from “How to Cook Everything: The Basics,” called “Pasta with Broccoli and Sausage,” and that experience informed my steps for this recipe.

The first time I had shaved Brussels sprouts was at my mother-in-law Betsy’s house, so I consulted her to find out which food processor blade to use.  I have used the chopping blade before for Brussels sprouts, and that produced confetti-sized pieces.  With the slicing disc, you get larger pieces, and I prefer that texture for a hearty meal like this.  The turkey bacon added a rich, savory flavor to the Brussels sprouts.  We have a really nice brick of parmesan cheese that we have been grating, so I added plenty of cheese for more flavor.  Lemon juice added a bright note to the combination, and I finished the dish with more grated parmesan and fresh ground black pepper.  As soon as I sat down to eat this dish, I realized I wanted to add some more protein.  I poured my serving into a small pot and cracked an egg on top, and scrambled the combination until the egg was fully cooked.

Recipe

Shaved Brussels Sprouts and Turkey Bacon Pasta – serves 6 – 8

Betsy and I chatted after I made this dish, and she suggested that Canadian bacon could also be used.  She also mentioned using liquid hickory smoke and edamame for a no-meat version of the dish.  Toasted walnuts, slivered almonds or pine nuts might make a nice topping.

You will need:img_0025

  1. 1 pound Brussels sprouts
  2. one pound of bowtie pasta
  3. about 1 T olive oil
  4. 2 slices of turkey bacon, chopped or torn into small pieces
  5. 1 T lemon juice
  6. salt and pepper to taste
  7. 2-3 T grated parmesan cheese
  8. one egg per serving

Steps:

  1. Set up your food processor with the slicing disc.  Wash Brussels sprouts and chop off rough ends.  Feed Brussels sprouts into your food processor be shredded.
  2. Add water to a medium-sized pot and bring to a boil for your pasta.  Add pasta when water is ready, and follow cooking directions according to package.  Do not dump out your pasta water – you will want some later on.
  3. In a large, stainless steel skillet heat about 1 T olive oil over medium heat.  Add turkey bacon and cook, stirring so bacon does not stick to your pan.  When bacon has browned a bit, add shaved Brussels sprouts to the pan.
  4. Add about 1/2 cup of water and cover your skillet with a lid to steam.
  5. When Brussels sprouts are just beginning to become tender, squeeze lemon juice over the pan and stir to combine.  Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Add cooked pasta to the skillet using a slotted spoon.  Remove pasta pot from heat and reserve pasta water.
  7. Stir pasta and Brussels sprouts to incorporate, and grate a generous pile of parmesan cheese on top.  Add up to 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water as needed to keep moisture in the dish and to create a creamy sauce to coat the pasta.
  8. If desired, scoop one serving of shaved Brussels sprouts and turkey bacon pasta into a separate small pot or pan over medium heat and add one egg.  Scramble ingredients until egg is fully cooked and egg whites go from clear to white.

Source: Bittman, Mark. How to Cook Everything: The Basics: All You Need to Make Great Food–with 1,000 Photos. N.p.: John Wiley & Sons Inc, 2012. Print.

Taylor Family Favorites: Pumpkin-Tofu Waffles

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I like to use our prettiest plates for brunches.

If you come to our place for brunch, you can count on us making one of two main dishes: Georgie Fear’s banana-oat pancakes or my mother-in-law Betsy Taylor’s pumpkin-tofu waffles. Today, I made the waffles in honor of Alex finishing a long overnight shift at the hospital. We usually make these waffles as a brunch or lunch meal, because the batter takes longer to prepare than our usual breakfasts. For an early morning waffle meal, prepare the wet and dry mixtures the night before and combine them right before making a batch of waffles in the morning. Alternatively, if you do not finish your batch, you can always freeze a few leftovers waffles.

Betsy always makes these waffles when we visit Truckee, but this fall she gave me the recipe so we could make them at home in Seattle. We’ve made them weekly ever since!

Recipe

Pumpkin-Tofu Waffles – serves 4 to 5, two large waffles each

Thanks to Betsy Taylor for introducing this recipe!  According to Betsy, you can substitute 3 bananas for the 1 cup of canned pumpkin.  And if you do not have oat bran on hand, you can whirl oats in your food processor instead.

You will need:img_4216

  1. a food processor
  2. 2/3 of a block of extra-firm tofu (about 12.5 oz)
  3. 1 C canned pumpkin
  4. 4 T maple syrup
  5. 2 T apple cider vinegar
  6. 2 C buttermilk, plus more as needed
  7. 1 C all-purpose flour
  8. 1 1/2 C whole wheat flour
  9. 1/2 C ground flax or wheat bran
  10. 1/2 C oat bran
  11. 1 1/2 T baking powder

Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.  Preheat your waffle maker, too.
  2. In a food processor, puree tofu.
  3. Combine with pumpkin, syrup and vinegar.  Blend.
  4. Add first two cups of buttermilk and blend to combine.
  5. Add dry ingredients and blend.
  6. Add additional buttermilk slowly to thin your batter, as needed (I usually only add 1/4 cup, max).
  7. Pour batter into waffle maker.  Place finished waffle on a baking sheet in the oven to stay warm.  Repeat with remaining batter.

Top with butter and maple syrup or powdered sugar, yogurt or peanut butter.  We usually pair waffles with eggs and turkey bacon, too.

 

 

 

Baked Chicken Parmesan with Roasted Vegetables in San Diego

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Liz and I enjoyed preparing this meal together, and comparing notes.  Not pictured: the banana bread that we baked the day before!

My sister, Liz, and I enjoy spending time in the kitchen together, whether we are at home in Delaware, visiting one another at our apartments in Seattle or San Diego, or simply connecting by phone and FaceTime.  We like to compare notes on recipes and reminisce about our childhood favorites that we could recreate sometime.  Liz also recently introduced me to Daphne Oz’s cookbook, “The Happy Cook”, and we followed her banana bread recipe together on my first day in San Diego.

After the rainiest Seattle October on record, it was luxurious to step out of the airport in San Diego and shed a couple layers.  Even better was getting picked up by Liz and Jay and being greeted by their dog Gracie (she remembered me!).  While in San Diego, we enjoyed meals out and a special dinner with Robin and Maria, but we made sure to make time to cook dinner together.  We used a recipe from SkinnyTaste as inspiration for our chicken parmesan prep, and consulted “Cook Yourself Thin” for the roasted vegetable steps (you can find that recipe on Food.com as well).

Recipe

Baked Chicken Parmesan – serves 4 to 6

I like using thin-sliced chicken breasts for this meal because that can increase your surface area for breading, sauce and cheese.  You can buy thin-sliced chicken breasts or slice them in half carefully at home.  When Liz and I made this meal, we found out that we accidentally had vegan cheese, which did not melt readily but still tasted great.  At home, I replicated the recipe with shredded mozzarella on top.  I have also started using foil to line the baking sheet for this recipe, because the topping and cheese tend to adhere to your baking sheet otherwise!

You will need:fullsizerender-16

  1. cooking spray
  2. 2 T butter
  3. 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts (thin-sliced)
  4. 3/4 C breadcrumbs (preferably Italian breadcrumbs)
  5. 1/4 C shredded parmesan cheese
  6. 1 C marinara or other pasta sauce of choice
  7. 3/4 C shredded mozzarella

Steps:

  1. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with foil.  Spray sheet lightly with cooking spray.
  2. Melt butter in the microwave for about 30-60 seconds.
  3. Combine breadcrumbs and parmesan in a large bowl.
  4. Brush both sides of the chicken breast with butter and dip in the breadcrumb and parmesan mixture, generously coating each sides.  Repeat with remaining chicken.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes for thin-sliced chicken breasts, or 25 minutes for thicker pieces.
  6. Remove from the oven and flip chicken breasts with tongs.  Top each piece with a spoonful or marinara and a sprinkling of mozzarella cheese.  Bake for another 5 minutes.

Recipe

Roasted Root Vegetables – serves 4 to 6

The original recipe calls for these veggies to roast for 30-35 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit.  If you make these with your chicken parmesan, keep an eye on the vegetables and check and stir them after 20-25 minutes.

You will need:img_8572

  1. 3 large carrots, peeled and sliced
  2. 1 bunch of asparagus, cut into 2-3 inch pieces
  3. 2 yukon gold potatoes, sliced
  4. 1 t parsley, chopped
  5. 1 t dried chives
  6. 1-2 T olive oil
  7. salt and pepper to taste

Steps:

  1. Line a baking sheet with foil.
  2. Combine sliced vegetables in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Drizzle 1-2 T olive oil over top and add salt and pepper and dried spices.
  4. Spread vegetables out on baking sheet in an even layer without too much overlap.
  5. Roast for 20 minutes and then shuffle the vegetables around on your baking sheet.  You may need to roast for an additional 5 to 10 minutes; check potatoes for tenderness and then bake an additional minute or two for crispy potato skins.

 

Sources:

Diva, Mommy. “Turkey Mini-Meatloaves With Roasted Root Veggies Recipe – Food.com.” Recipe – Food.com. N.p., 2009. Web. 01 Dec. 2016. (online resource for roasted root veggies)

Homolka, Gina. “Baked Chicken Parmesan | Skinnytaste.” Skinnytaste. N.p., 12 Sept. 2012. Web. 01 Dec. 2016.

Lifetime Television.  Cook Yourself Thin: Skinny Meals You Can Make in Minutes. New York: Hyperion, 2009. Print. (print resource for roasted root veggies)