Tag Archives: gluten-free

warm butternut squash salad with lemon tahini dressing

It’s clear I have a small obsession with butternut squash. But how can you not? It’s just so delicious and versatile. And this recipe is the best one yet! I promise. I’ve made it at least four times this winter. That’s how good it is. When the weather is cold and it’s nice to comfort myself with the warm, sweet, buttery taste of squash, chickpeas, and tahini.

warm-butternut-squash-salad-2

 

I discovered this recipe from my friend Jamie. She got it from Smitten Kitchen and there are tons of adaptions in between. My variation includes roasting the onions, garlic and chickpeas instead of eating them cold and raw. I did want to show you how I make it a one-pot (sort of) dish. The hardest part is peeling and dicing the squash. After that, it’s easy street.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Start with peeling and dicing your squash into bite-sized cubes. Remove all seeds and innards.

Warm Butternut Squash Salad

Then dice an onion into medium pieces.

Dice Onion

Place the squash and the onion in an aluminium-lined baking dish or baking sheet. You’ll want the walls of the baking dish later, when you stir everything together.

Top  with some salt and pepper and coat the squash and onion with oil. I used coconut, which is pictured below in its non-liquid state. You can use olive oil though. I had to wait until my coconut oil melted before I could stir it in.

Warm Butternut Squash Salad

Roast your butternut squash for 25 – 35 minutes. 25 minutes should work fine for a small squash, but if you had a larger squash and a more crowded baking sheet, you’ll want to keep it in the oven for a bit longer.

In the meantime, whisk together the tahini, lemon juice, and water in a large mixing cup.

Here’s a tip. Don’t have tahini? I’ve used store-bought hummus and it turned out great. Other variations of this recipe suggest using peanut butter or almond butter.

Lemon Tahini Dressing

Dice up a clove of garlic and rinse the canned chickpeas. Wait until you have about five minutes left on your roast and stir in the chickpeas and garlic. Place the mixture back in the oven for an additional five minutes. This warms up the chickpeas and cuts the intensity of the garlic.

Add Chickpeas

When the butternut squash is soft and tender, pull it out of the oven. Pour on the lemon tahini dressing (or you can leave it on the side).

Add Lemon Tahini Dressing

And mix it together.

Mix

Plate and enjoy! This keeps wonderfully in the refrigerator. I make a big pot of it on Sunday and eat it for the week.

Warm Butternut Squash Salad

warm butternut squash salad with lemon tahini dressing
 
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Author:
Recipe type: dinner
Cuisine: vegan/vegetarian
Yields: 4
Ingredients
Squash Salad
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled and diced into cubes
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut or olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 15 oz. can chick peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 clove of garlic
Lemon Tahini Dressing
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp. tahini (or store-bought hummus)
  • 2 Tbsp. water
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
Instructions
Prepare the Warm Salad
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. Peel and dice a small butternut squash. Discard all seeds and guts.
  3. Chop a medium yellow onion.
  4. Place the onion and butternut squash in a roasting pan.
  5. Sprinkle in salt and pepper, to taste
  6. Cover all the pieces with 2 Tbsp. of oil.
  7. Place the pan in the oven and roast for 25 minutes. Allow more cooking time if you have a larger squash.
Add Chickpeas
  1. Rinse and drain your can of chickpeas.
  2. Mince the garlic clove.
  3. Wait until there is five minutes left on the roast and stir in the chickpeas and garlic.
Prepare the Lemon Tahini Dressing
  1. While you're waiting on the roast, whisk together the lemon juice, tahini, water, and olive oil until it's completely mixed together.
Assembly
  1. Top the squash salad with the lemon tahini dressing while it is still warm. Mix together with a wooden spoon until all pieces are nicely covered. Serve hot.

 

quinoa stuffed acorn squash with pecans and raisins

Are you freezing yet? It has been in the 50’s all day. The cats are sleeping in the weirdest places, trying to stay warm. It’s so cold, all I can think is climbing under the covers with a book (Ender’s Game). Oh, and eating, of course – eating lots of warm things. This quinoa stuffed acorn squash does not disappoint. This dish is filled with warm, whole grains mixed with pecans and raisins, served in a roasted acorn squash bowl. It leaves your belly full and body warm. It’s also easily made into a vegan dish.

Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash

I will be the first to admit that I blew it on these photos.  The lighting couldn’t have been worse. It was dark out, my overhead was yellow, and lest we forget, my walls are puke green. (sigh). Also, someone call Dexter, because I clearly don’t know how to photograph vinegar.  In the few seconds it took for me to adjust my camera, post-drizzle, my plates started to look like blood splatter. Don’t believe me?

The Horror, The Horror

I’m sorry I showed you that. Appetizing, I know. But, if you can look past the camera work and desperate Photoshop touch ups, I promise you these were incredible.

Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash with Pecans and Rasins
 
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Use the acorn squash as a warm bowl to eat the savory mix of quinoa, pecans and raisins.
Author:
Recipe type: Dinner
Yields: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 Acorn Squash
  • 2 teaspoons of butter or vegan margarine
  • 2 cups of quinoa, cooked
  • ¼ cup of pecans, chopped into chunks
  • ¼ cup of raisins
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • balsamic vinegar to drizzle
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Slice the acorn squash in half, removing all of seeds and stringy insides.
  3. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
  4. Rub the butter on the inside of the acorn squash, including the top rim (basically any part that is yellow).
  5. Place the acorn squash, open side facing up, in the oven.
  6. Roast for 45 minutes, or until the squash is tender and easily punctured with a fork.
  7. Meanwhile, prepare your quinoa, if you haven't already cooked it.
  8. In a small bowl, create the quinoa mixture by combining the quinoa, raisins, and pecans.
  9. Add salt and pepper to the mixture.
  10. Once the acorn squash is done, scoop a cup of the quinoa mixture into each acorn squash.
  11. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

 

stuffed-quinoa-2

 

The vinegar was infused with pumpkin pie spice. I found it at Scarborough Fare Oil and Vinegar Tap Room. They have a tasting bar, where you can sample a variety of flavors, including fig vinegar and truffle infused oil. If you’re ever in the cute little town of New Paltz, Ny, stop by and check them out.

avocado egg salad

I’ve seen a few recipes floating around the web for egg salads that use greek yogurt and avocado instead of mayonnaise. In fact, I could have sworn I save a few, or at least pinned one or two of them. But when I went to search my computer for a recipe, they were nowhere to be found.

So instead of googling one, I just winged it. So here you go. An on-the-fly, I still don’t have basic kitchen staples, let’s hope this tastes good recipe.

And it does. It could quite possibly be the best out there.

I’ll have to admit I was skeptical about giving up mayonnaise. I was raised in the south, after all. And since hearty vegetarian sandwiches are hard to find down there, egg salad sandwiches became my go-to. And (my secret confession) I don’t like Greek yogurt, so I was reluctant to try this at all.

This is one of those recipes that I thought would be the sum of its parts. One that would fail to deliver something better. But I was really impressed. You don’t miss the mayonnaise. I added some sauteed red onions for crunch and flavor.  And if you’re an avocado fan, well, you’ll regret not trying this sooner.

It’s ok. There’s still time.

My favorite part of making egg salad is the memories. The smashing of hard boiled eggs with a fork recalls vivid parts of my past. My mother didn’t teach me a lot of cooking growing up. But I remember the way it felt making egg salads with her. Back then it was only eggs, paprika, and mayonnaise. Last summer it was pickles, grainy mustard, and crusty bread with Ryan before we set out on a hike or a trip to the beach. Today, in a big city it is Greek yogurt and avocado. I guess everything evolves.

avocado egg salad
 
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Author:
Recipe type: lunch, salad
Cuisine: salad
Yields: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • ¼ large red onion, diced
  • 2 eggs, hard boiled
  • ½ ripe avocado
  • 3 Tbsp. plain Greek yogurt
  • Salt, to taste
Instructions
  1. While you're waiting for your eggs to boil, place butter in a skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. When the butter is melted, toss in the diced onions and sautee about 5 minutes, until soft.
  3. Place the peeled eggs, sauteed onion, avocado, and Greek yogurt into a mixing bowl and mash until well combined.
  4. Add salt to taste.

 

low carb pad thai with tofu

After my roommate and I signed our lease on our new place in Crown Heights, I invited her over to my rental room for an experimental lunch of low-carb pad thai. After all, broker’s fees make me ravenous. I was really concerned about how lunch would taste. I even prepped her, “I’ve never made this before… It might not be good… There’s always pizza if it doesn’t work out.”

So, clearly, I’m a nervous wreck about cooking something new for someone. But this low carb pad thai turned out great. And it only has 13 carbs per serving! The secret? I substituted cabbage for noodles. The carbs were not missed. It was still oily and peanut buttery, which is all I ask for in my pad thai.

pad thai

low carb tofu pad thai
 
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Author:
Recipe type: dinner
Cuisine: thai
Yields: 5
Ingredients
  • 4 Tbsp. canola oil, plus more for frying
  • 1 16 oz. block of extra firm tofu, pressed
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 6 cups, or ¼ head of large cabbage, shredded
  • 5 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 2 Tbsp. Peanut Butter
  • 2 green onions, chopped
Extra Delicious Options
  • Scrambled Egg
  • Sriracha
Instructions
Fry the Tofu
  1. Press the tofu for about 15 minutes to drain all water
  2. Cut the tofu into triangles or cubes
  3. Pour oil into frying pan, until it covers the whole pan and is about ¼ inch deep
  4. Warm oil over medium-high heat
  5. Add the tofu to the oil and cook on each side for about five minutes, until all sides are a nice tan color, appx. 25 minutes.
  6. Place on a paper towel to drain excess oil
Pad Thai
  1. Chop the cabbage into long, thin pieces
  2. Pour 4 Tbsp. oil into pan and warm it over medium heat
  3. Once the oil is hot, add in the chopped onion and sautee for five minutes, or until soft.
  4. Sautee in the cabbage and top with the soy sauce
  5. Continue to cook the cabbage, stirring occasionally, until it reaches a noodle-like consistency
  6. After about 10 minutes, toss in the garlic and peanut butter and give it a stir.
  7. Once the cabbage is completely cooked down, add in the tofu and green onions and let it simmer for a few minutes.
  8. If you want, now is a good time to crack an egg in the mixture and scramble it.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 cup Calories: 320 Fat: 27 Carbohydrates: 13 Protein: 12

Felicite was in charge of the photo taking that day. Here’s are some shots of the the cooking.

There’s nothing more satisfying than eating tofu in a triangle shape.

This is the light, golden color you want your tofu to be. On the left, you can see the long strips of cabbage.

Adding the soy sauce. 

This is about mid-way through the cooking process. I would normally cook something like this in my wok, but it’s in storage.

The waiting. This is really an excuse to show off that apron. P.s. That is my entire kitchen. It’s why I haven’t been cooking much since I moved.

Here’s a better view of the kitchen. Things get crowded fast.

And finally adding in the tofu.

Some other, non-food related pics. Kevin, the house cat. The king. I will miss him so much when I move out. 

Felicite took a selfie on our dirty mirror. And I am playing with Kevin in the background.

And this sweet guy. I love him.