Thursday, January 22, 2009

Roasted Squash and Sausage Pasta

Roasted Squash and Sausage Pasta

1 butternut squash
1 lb. fresh sausage (sweet Italian or Polish)
1 red onion
1 box whole wheat pasta
1 tsp. thyme
salt & pepper
1 cup grated cheese
Peel and dice squash. Cut sausages into pieces (about 1.5 inches long). Chop onion. Combine onion, squash and sausage on a baking tray. Coat with oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Roast at 375F until squash is tender (about 1 hour.).
Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to box directions. Keep warm. When squash is cooked, add to pasta and throw in a few handfuls of grated cheese.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Coconut and Beef Curry

Coconut and Beef Curry
(adapted from Everyday FOOD Magazine)

2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 lb. beef, cut into thin strips (could substitute chicken)
1 red onion, halved and thinly sliced (or white onion)
2 red bell peppers, thinly sliced (could possibly use another veg)
1 Tbsp. Thai red curry paste (I used 1/2 Tbsp. -- this curry paste is mild though)
1 14 0z. can coconut milk
1 cup basil leaves (or cilantro)
1 Tbsp. lime juice
cooked pasta

Heat 1 tbsp oil in skillet. Season beef with salt and pepper; add half of beef to skillet. Cook, without stirring, until browned on one side, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate and repeat with remaining tbsp oil and beef. Set aside beef, reserving skillet. (Meat will cook more later)

Add onion, bell peppers, and 1/4 cup water to skillet; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occassionally, until vegetables are crisp-tender; about 3-4 minutes. Add curry paste; cook, scraping bottom of skillet, 1 minute.

Return beef to skillet, with any accumulated juices, and add coconut milk. Simmer until sauce thickens slightly, 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in fresh herbs and lime juice.

Serve over pasta.

I really enjoyed this Thai dish. I thought it could also be adapted easily to other things you may have around the house. The only ingredients not easily substituted would be the red curry paste and the coconut milk -- that gives the curry its flavor.

Baked Potato Soup

Baked Potato Soup
(adapted from Rachael Ray Magazine)

In a soup pot brown:

6-8 oz. bacon (which has been snipped or cut into small pieces)

Remove bacon pieces with a slotted spoon and place on a paper towel-covered plate for later.

To the bacon fat left in the soup pan add:

1 head of cauliflower, washed, cut into florets
4 large baking potatoes (or the equivalent) peeled and diced

Saute the vegetables for a few minutes in the bacon fat.


Enough chicken stock to almost cover the potatoes and cauliflower. I use "Better than Boullion" which is a soup base paste made without MSG

Simmer the potatoes and cauliflower until tender. Puree in blender.


2-3 cups of milk (enough to make the soup creamy without making it runny)

Heat through.

Serve soup with crumbled bacon on top plus any other favorite baked potato toppings: cheese, sour-cream, parsley, chopped green onions, etc.

Makes enough for 10+. You can easily halve the recipe.

Easy Taco Soup

Easy Taco Soup
(adapted from a freezer-cooking recipe book)

In a soup pot brown:

1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, chopped

Drain fat and add:

1 15 oz. can chopped tomatoes
1 15 oz. can pinto beans
1 15 oz. can black beans
1 15 oz. can corn
1 15 oz. can water
1 packet taco seasoning

Bring to a boil and simmer for 30-40 minutes.

Serve with tortilla chips, sour-cream, grated cheese, chopped green onions, or plain.
You can make this in quantities and freeze.