Ever since I ate this squash recipe I’ve been jonesin’ for a repeat. The first batch of squash I bought at the Grower’s Market went funky and I threw them into the backyard in a big fat huff. I then realized that farmer’s market squash was grown locally and has been stored for months (since fall). I added a few squash to my Giant list and here we are.
Thank you Bekka Shepherd! One of my very oldest friends (2nd grade) sent me this recipe as her family’s weekly staple. She’s a busy working mom so I can officially deem this “busy working mom approved”. Ok, this is it, a really, truly, EASY recipe. I mean it. If you can open cans you can make this. If you want it to be more like chili, skip the chicken broth. With the broth, it’s sort of like a “stoup” or a nice, thick soup. The first time I made it like chili – no chicken broth and some simmering to thicken it up. The second time, soup! Both flavorful and delicious.
I love casseroles in theory; in actuality they’re usually full of ingredients I avoid at dinnertime. I’m talking egg noodles, sour cream, canned soup, spice packets, etc. I also need it to be easy; I don’t want to cook each part separately then put it together just so I can call it a one-dish-meal. This checked all the boxes and it’s a dieter’s dream; full of protein and low in calories.
I have so many thoughts. First, I was always hesitant to try pumpkin chili because it sounded gross. In my mind there was pumpkin pie mashed with meat and beans. My church and cooking gal pal Heather had it on her site, here, and wanted to see if I had any suggestions. I trust her cooking, so I figured it was worth a try. I followed her blueprint but added here and there as necessary. The end result floored me, not because it was so good (which it was) but because you literally cannot taste pumpkin – it just has a more creamy consistency (minus any dairy) which makes it pretty awesome.
A second recipe from Lynnie, and another winner. This was linked from a blog and I changed it a bit, but the general idea is all hers. These made for a tasty dinner (with peas and salad because it was all I had on hand) but next time I’ll make them for a party. A bit of work, I won’t lie, but nothing hard.
When I got the email with Lynn’s fave recipes, I could hear her voice in her writing like she was talking to me. Lynn is one of my favorites but she lives in Pittsburg and has since we parted ways after college; we don’t get to see each other as much as we’d like. She’s awesome. She wrote, “I hate meatloaf but this one is really good, and Ryan loves it”. That’s high praise from my girl Lynnie.
Another Beth recipe! She sent me this recipe for weeknight crockpot chili and, though I have a crockpot chili on my site already, this deserves a place as well. Let me explain…
I’m a big fan of these Asian dishes where the meat and vegetables cook together in the same sauce. The only required side is rice and since I bake mine in the oven, dinner’s finished in twenty minutes. My fave is this beef and edamame dish but this was a tasty, and even healthier, alternative.
I bought a few beautiful acorn squash at the market and then they sat in my pull out pantry. For like, three weeks. I just wasn’t sure what to do with them and I knew the kids would fight me no matter what. You know what kids? Sometimes its not about you. This recipe was so scrumptious my husband declared “are you blogging this? You need to.”
I don’t love to cook fish. I’m sorry, I know it’s good for me, but I just don’t enjoy it that much. Though I’ve cooked it every which way, I’ve finally learned how to make it taste great. Butter. I am thrilled that butter is back for so many reasons, one of which is white fish.
Though I’ve had my reservations about my crock pot (steamed vegetables are gross), there is no doubt that crock pot chili is where it’s at. This recipe is easy enough for a weeknight (no browning the meat!), but tasty enough for company. You’ll notice that I haven’t posted chili yet on my site – that’s because I always feel slightly dissatisfied with versions I’ve tried. Well, not this time!
I love weekend afternoon cooking. Rich is home to entertain Tess and Leo naps; I listen to my perfected Jack Johnson Pandora station (heavy on the Joshua Radin, Gavin DeGraw and Ingrid Michaelson) and cook. Sometimes it’s for friends coming over or bringing a dessert somewhere but usually it’s just for the week ahead. Typically it’s the regulars like pecan pie bars, double chocolate zucchini muffins, baked brown rice, or poached chicken. I’ll throw a bunch of sweet potatoes in the oven with a spaghetti squash then refrigerate until needed. Even though it’s monotonous I still truly enjoy it. Using up what I’ve bought or what’s in season at the market gives me a sense of accomplishment.
I’ve always liked white chili better than red but I find that most recipes for white chili aren’t so healthy – sometimes they contain dairy and when they don’t, they’re sort of thin, more like a soup. How did I not think of this before? Pureed beans! Creamy and healthy – my fave combo.
I heart Costco. It’s far enough away that I probably go only once a month, but one of my favorite buys is the organic ground beef. I believe it comes in pack of four and shakes out to less than 6 dollars a pound – pretty good for organic. Organic ground beef tastes better to me, by a lot. This dinner has been a near-weekly occurrence for us over the past year and is probably my favorite dinner – not lying.
So there’s this hormone called leptin and it makes you full. For the past two weeks or so mine has apparently become dangerously deficient. Maybe it’s the wet weather? All I know is I’m hungry all the time, and since I zipped a dress on Monday that wouldn’t zip on Thursday, I’m ready to get past it.
Happy sprinkle to Miss Alison! I was in charge of chicken salad and I never really make chicken salad (let alone chicken salad for fifteen people). Not a big fan of mayo-based salads (this lightened up lemony version an exception) and when I chatted up the fit and fabulous Alison, I found out she wasn’t either.
Big win for this dinner with the whole family (Tessa said the chicken tasted funny but the fact that she even ate it was a surprise to me). I don’t often cook a pork tenderloin, only because they don’t sell them in giant organic packs at Costco. This was a flavor profile I’m not as used to; I use allspice in granola and some cookies but not usually on meat. Plus, cherries? Trust me, though, different can be a good thing!
This is one of the freshest tasting soups I’ve had in a long time. The typical garlic or onion flavor boost that starts most soups is absent here and it’s quite alright. With spicy radish and bright lemon, not to mention the decidedly springy asparagus, this soup is the closest I’ll ever get to doing a “cleanse”.
I’m a drumstick newbie! There’s definitely something very feral about gnawing on drumsticks, I’m not gonna lie.