Foodie Friday!

Wow, so, a lot went on and I failed utterly at blogging all summer….  Time to get back at this!

Pinterest GOT me yesterday morning, and I have had a butternut squash staring at me waiting to be used in the pantry, so right away in the morning I got started on dinner.  I was totally made of win, and got a load of laundry going, stuck the squash in the oven to roast, and did a great workout all at the same time!

Butternut Squash & Spinach Lasagna

Photo from Juliasalbum.com
Photo from Juliasalbum.com

Pretty obvious how Pinterest got me, right?  Doesn’t that look great????

Here’s my “Making of”…..  SOOOOOO GOOD.  I think some red pepper flakes to add a little heat might make it even better, but it’s delicious exactly as the recipe is written!

Butternut squash and spinach lasagna

Ingredients

Butternut Squash Filling:
    • 2 cups butternut squash puree (I used more like 2.5 cups, my whole squash, which was pretty small ~ and the squash puree link goes to www.juliasalbum.com, where I got this amazing recipe)
    • 1 cup ricotta cheese
    • 1/2 cup milk (or more, if needed)
    • 1/4 + 1/8 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Spinach Filling:
    • 1 cup cooked spinach (8 oz uncooked)
    • 1 cup ricotta cheese
    • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
    • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • pepper, to taste
Other Ingredients:
  • 10 oz lasagna noodles, cooked (for gluten free, use Tinkyada brown rice lasagna noodles)
  • 1 and 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese (or more)
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (on top)
  • Italian seasoning
  • Paprika
  • Basil

Instructions

    1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
Butternut Squash Filling:
    1. For this filling, you will need to have pre-cooked butternut squash puree. Using food processor, combine 2 cups of butternut squash puree with Ricotta cheese, milk, salt and nutmeg. Add more milk if needed (to make the butternut squash filling very creamy). Mix very well, taste and add more salt, if needed.
Spinach Filling:
    1. Combine spinach, Ricotta cheese, mozzarella, garlic, salt and pepper. Mix, taste, and add more salt and pepper, if needed.
Cooking lasagna noodles:
    1. Bring a very large pot of water to boil, and cook lasagna noodles according to package instructions. Rinse in cold water, drain. Using knife, trim noodles to fit your baking dish (if necessary).
Lasagna assembly:
  1. Prepare a baking dish – I used a casserole dish 11 inches x 8.5 inches x 3 inches deep. Grease the lasagna dish lightly with olive oil spray. Spread 1/3 of butternut squash filling on the bottom of the dish. Sprinkle lightly with mozzarella cheese. Top with cooked lasagna noodles without overlapping (I used 3 noodles).
  2. Spread half of spinach filling over the noodles. Top lightly with Mozzarella cheese. Top with cooked noodles.
  3. Spread another layer (1/3) of butternut squash mixture, then sprinkle lightly with Mozzarella cheese. Top with cooked noodles.
  4. Spread the remaining half of spinach filling over the noodles. Top lightly with Mozzarella cheese. Top with the final layer of cooked noodles.
  5. Spread a generous amount of butternut squash filling (the remaining 1/3) over this final layer of noodles, sprinkle with grated Parmesan and remaining mozzarella cheese (about 1/2 cup of mozzarella). Generously sprinkle the cheese with Italian seasoning, paprika, basil.
  6. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 30 min. Remove foil and bake additional 10 minutes.

Butternut Squash Stew

butternut squash soup
Butternut squash with kale & quinoa stew: Very FABULOUS!

Foodie Friday rolls round again!

This week I have been strictly sticking to the 21 Day Fix portion control meal plan – which mean EAT MORE VEGGIES and EAT MORE PROTEIN!  This delicious stew has been a lunch staple all week – so much veggie goodness!!!

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (or more) teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 (or more) teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon red chile flakes
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • splash of white wine vinegar (1-2 tablespoons)
  • 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 32 oz. vegetable broth
  • ½ cup dry quinoa (or 1.5 cups cooked quinoa)
  • generous amounts of salt & pepper
  • a few big handfuls of chopped kale
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until they become translucent. Add the butternut squash cubes, another few pinches of salt, and stir again.
  2. Let the butternut squash cook for a few minutes, then add the garlic, cumin, coriander, paprika and chile flakes. Stir, then add a splash of white wine vinegar to deglaze the bottom of the pan. Add the tomatoes, broth and quinoa. Cover and simmer until the butternut squash is tender and the quinoa is cooked through (about 40 minutes). Halfway through, I like to taste and adjust seasonings. Add additional spices if you like.
  3. When the soup is nearly done, add in a few handfuls of chopped kale. Stir and let it cook until wilted (about 5 minutes more). Taste, and adjust seasonings again.
  4. Store leftover soup in the fridge for 4-5 days or freeze.
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This picture is from “Love and Lemons” ~ They have a beautiful blog full of delicious!