When my husband switched to a lower carb diet, I joined him. Since I’m gluten free, it wasn’t a huge dietary shift for me, and, frankly, it helped me cut back on the rice I’d been using as a crutch since quitting so many other foods. Since this diet modification, I’ve been experimenting with lots more vegetable-based meals. And, we’re eating a lot more eggs.
One Sunday, we had a scrambled egg tutorial (this was followed by basic poached eggs and simple fried eggs). Since then, I just avert my eyes when he makes his scrambled eggs. It’s painful. Apparently my process was too complicated for him. Continue reading “Scrambling Some Eggs”
I don’t know what your schedule is like, but mine definitely needs a lot more room for free time. Even those days when I am particularly virtuous and get up at five to exercise seem like they don’t have enough hours. By the time I get home from work at night, there aren’t many hours until I’m supposed to hit the sack.
One trick I’ve mastered is making fast meals. As I’ve mentioned before, so often, going out to eat feels like a huge burden — if it’s a new place, I have to determine which menu items fit into my gluten-free diet; if it’s a familiar place, the foods I can eat lead to a repetitive (and sometimes boring) dining experience. Cooking at home lets me explore the variety of foods I love.
But, like I said, it’s gotta be fast. It’s gotta be easy. It’s gotta be delicious. And if it’s a recipe that delivers leftovers as well, then bonus points all around! Continue reading “Frittata Ideas for Weeknight Meals”
Pure Fall (or any season) yumminess! I find butternut squash adds a lovely sweetness, while the sausage adds fat and salt and flavor. The quinoa gives the dish body, and the spinach, well, how can you go wrong with spinach? I toss in a little ricotta for extra flavor. It’s all good.
This works equally well with acorn squash. If you are going with butternut squash, make sure it is relatively symmetric. A very large head and small tail will cook at different levels, leaving the the tail done long before the big part of the squash is done. This leads to an especially tender tail — meaning you have to be extra careful when scooping out the flesh.
I’m not a huge tomato sauce person, but lasagna is one of my weaknesses. How could I resist? Gooey cheese, layers of meat and noodles, that sauce pulling the whole thing together. And because I couldn’t find gluten-free lasagna noodles ahead of time, I bought 12 boxes from Amazon. That’s a whole lotta lasagna.
The way I figure it, I have enough noodles to last me several years!*
It takes about five minutes of Internet research to discover that everyone has a favorite lasagna recipe, ranging from quick to laborious. Or, there is no wrong way to make a lasagna. Take what works for you and don’t worry too much about doing it “right” — as long as it’s tasty, you’re good.
This recipe involves making your own Bolognese sauce, so it will take some time (think of a terrific sauce simmering on the stove all afternoon, that’s what we’re doing here). Letting the sauce simmer develops a rich flavor — one I find hard to replicate with store-bought sauces (which, of course, I use when time is working against me).
As you will see in the notes, you can skip steps 1 − 6 if you are pressed for time.
* — Okay, truth: those noodles will be gone in no time since I’m testing different lasagna styles.
It should be obvious by now that I love meals that result in lots of yummy leftovers. Lasagna fits that need perfectly. It’s such a flexible dish — there are so many ways to make it, it can be made ahead of time and popped in the oven later, and it’s a great dish for those nights when it’s your turn to host your book club.
Because my local grocery stores don’t carry gluten-free lasagna noodles, I bought a case from Amazon.com. The price was fantastic, and knowing I have the noodles handy opens up a wide range of of possibilities…including lasagna roll-ups and cupcakes! Once you have your favorite base recipe, it’s easy to try different serving ideas.
I know that most people think of red meat sauce and loads of cheese when they think lasagna (I know I do), but this recipe takes the dish in a whole different direction. You can continue with the Italian flavor profile, mix in a little Mexican or Southwest American, or go wild with Caribbean spices. Whatever tickles your palate.
For months, I stared at a recipe I’d pulled from Food and Wine magazine: a Pork Tinga from Rick Bayless. It looked delicious…and time-consuming. I am not opposed to time-consuming recipes (obviously!), but, for some reason, this particular recipe daunted me. Yet I kept coming back to it.
Then my husband had knee surgery, and I needed a lot of free freezer space to store the ice we needed to keep the swelling down (he had a machine that did the hard part, but it need to be fed a lot of ice). In my “what can I cook right now?” frenzy, I ran across a bag of boneless pork shoulder that fit the description.
But, time. Time. The Pork Tinga recipe didn’t fit my available time. However, something done up in the crockpot would work just fine. We love pulled pork, we love Mexican flavors, we love easy meals. So I stole the concept of the recipe and worked it into a delicious meal that showcases a favorite food while providing enough leftovers for other meals.
This is, for me, the ultimate Italian sauce. It’s perfect for noodles, for lasagna, for parties. Yes, it takes a long time to make this sauce from scratch, but you can freeze it so it’s ready for quick meals at any time. I love to make this sauce on a Sunday afternoon. The scent permeates house, making everyone hungry, and, truth be told, I’m getting hungry just writing about it!
Modify this recipe to suit your own personal taste, but don’t omit the vegetables. They give depth and body to this sauce.