Tag Archives: pasta

Can I get

Three Cheese Swiss Chard

Mac & Cheese

mac_n_cheese

Sometimes it’s fun to be a bit indulgent, for example using three types of cheese to make mac & cheese.  I try to keep my dairy intake to a reasonable amount as I’m slightly lactose intolerant but sometimes have to just take a lactaid and enjoy the cheesiness of life!  In attempt to tease myself into thinking this dish is at all healthy, I added some swiss chard.  Regardless, it’s all 52weeksofcookings fault as they were the ones who posted a Mac and Cheese challenge – so totally blaming them for all the calories in this dish!

Can I get

Serves: Serves 4-5

Ingredients

1 lb small shells

2 tbsp butter

2 garlic cloves

2 tbsp flour

2 cups milk

1/2 tsp yellow mustard

1/2 cup shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese

1/2 cup shredded colby jack

1/2 cup shredded monterey jack

2 cups swiss chard, torn

salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Cook the shells per instructions on box until just under al dente. Drain, rinse, then return to pot and set aside.
  2. While shells are cooking, melt the butter in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 5 minutes before stirring in the flour. Slowly whisk in the milk, breaking up any clumps that form. Then add the yellow mustard and stir in.
  3. Begin adding the shredded cheese to the milk, allowing each bit to melt before adding more. Once all the cheese has been added pour over the pasta.
  4. Put the pasta pot with the cheese sauce over medium heat and cook for an additional 5 minutes or until pasta is fully cooked. Toss in the swiss chard and stir - allowing the leaves to wilt.
  5. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
http://dancingveggies.com/2016/03/can-i-get.html

This Mac&Cheese is so rich that we actually had leftovers for lunch the next day which is something that normally doesn’t happen.  I warmed everything back up on the stove, adding just a bit of olive oil as this dish did not need more diary.  Joe then topped his with Old Bay (shocker!) while I enjoyed mine as is.

End of the

Pasta with Creamy Roasted Garlic Sauce

pasta_creamy_garlic

Welcome to the November Edition of Group A’s Secret Recipe Club!!!!  This will also be my final SRC post of the year as I’m taking December off.  I plan to be back in February and have been working on a few posts that will go up while I’m adjusting to my new role as Mommy.  It’s hard to believe that after three years of trial and tribulation we are only weeks (days?) away from being parents!!!  As part of this upcoming change, I have been stalking blogs and rereading cookbooks in search of quick and easy and delicious dinners that take little thought or time.  Needless to say being partnered with a(nother) vegetarian blog was perfect!  Racheal is an Aussie living in Switzerland who went veggie while in her teens, as did her husband, so her kids were raised vegetarian – did I mention this was the PERFECT blog to get this month?!?!  I essentially flagged every recipe on her blog before remembering there are only so many dinners in a month and cut back to a final three: vegetable tian, tofu mozzarella balls, and pasta with creamy garlic sauce.  In the end the pasta won out as I just can’t say no to roasted garlic.  The only “change” I made was converting the measurements – otherwise everything is as is!

Pasta with Creamy Garlic Sauce

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

2 tbsp butter

3 tbsp all-purpose flour

1 cup 2% milk, room temperature

1 pinch salt

1 head roasted garlic, mashed with any remaining roasting oil

1 cup Parmigiano Reggiano, finely grated

1 lb pasta

Instructions

  1. Cook spaghetti according to box, drain (reserving about a 1/4 cup of the cooking water), return to pot and set aside.
  2. Melt the butter in a sauce pan over medium heat, then gradually whisk in the flour until combined Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly until completely incorporated after each addition.
  3. Add salt and cook over low heat until thickened, about 10 minutes.
  4. Stir in roasted garlic then add the cheese and stir until melted.
  5. Serve and Enjoy!
  6. Toss the sauce through the pasta, adding a couple of tablespoons of pasta water to loosen. Serve with a grind or two of black pepper and a sprinkle of grated Parmigiano Reggiano.
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/11/end-of-the.html

 For anyone new to roasting garlic check out this link for a quick and dirty tutorial.  Once you have had roasted garlic, it can be a bit hard going back to the “normal” stuff.  Needless to say my final SRC post of 2015 was a huge success!  This dinner came together so quickly that I can say with confidence that it will on the regular rotation once the little one arrives – one more quick and easy meal to add to the list.

Rain Starts

Cheese”burger” Mac & Cheese

seitan_mac_cheese

When I first went vegetarian, I thought I could just make up a box of something and just leave out the meat – then I started reading labels and realized how so not healthy that option was.  With that I started experimenting to see what “out of the box” options I could come up with that would have the same great taste but healthier (i.e. less sodium).  It took a bit of time until I could figure out the right method, but now I have down to a science!   Even better, this dish can be adapted for vegans and all cooks up in one pot.  The one pot paste took a bit of time to get used to but the trick is to add less water than you think as seriously much easier to add more water later than to eat a soggy mess (trust me).

Rain Starts

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil

1/2 vidalia onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, diced

1 tbsp Italian seasonings

1 cup seitan crumbles

1/2 lb elbow pasta

1 1/2 cups water

2 cups tomatoes, diced

1/2 cup shredded extra sharp cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook for 10 minutes, then add the Italian seasonings and cook for an additional 5 minutes - stirring to prevent sticking/burning.
  2. Add the seitan along with the pasta and water and bring to a boil.
  3. Cook for 10 minutes, then turn heat to low add the tomatoes and the shredded cheese. Keep stirring until the cheese melts. Add a bit of milk if too dry, give a final stir and keep on low heat for a final 5 minutes.
  4. Serve and Enjoy!

Notes

Vegan Option: sub the cheddar cheese with Daiya meltables

http://dancingveggies.com/2015/02/rain-starts.html

For an added crunch, add some fresh spinach at the very end – or some kale!  To add an extra punch, I used tomato pasta which also gave the dish a fantastic shade of red.  I’m a huge fan of flavored pastas, especially ones that I don’t have to make myself, even if I know they aren’t as healthy as they might advertise to be.  All the flavors of a cheeseburger, minus the meat!

A Long

Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese

butternut_mac_cheese

I can’t believe it’s already day 5 of TripleSBites!  Last night we had our awesome twitter party, which included a few of our awesome sponsors and lots of tasty recipes.  Today’s feature is one that takes a bit of prep work but offers a great twist on a classic dish.  While a few of my twists on Mac & Cheese haven’t been blogworthy (hello, cauliflower) but this one is out of the world!  To save some time I used a few of my Gourmet Garden treats and also added just a touch of a new goody: Chili Cumin from Acala Farms.  Normally I use mustard seed in my mac & cheese but decided to switch it up this time!

A Long

Serves 4-5

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp chili cumin oil

1 butternut squash (about 2 lbs), halved

1 lb elbow noodles

1 tsp Italian Spices paste (Gourmet Garden)

1 tsp Chunky Garlic paste (Gourmet Garden)

1/4 cup Greek yogurt

3 ounces goat cheese

1/2 cup seasoned breadcrumbs (optional)

Instructions

  1. Turn oven to 425. Mix together the olive oil and cumin oil and pour in the bottom of a roasting pan. Place the squash in roasting pan, cut side down. Roast for 45 minutes.
  2. Turn oven down to 350 and remove squash from oven for 10 minutes, then remove and set aside to cool.
  3. Meanwhile cook the elbow pasta per the box, rinse and then return to the pan.
  4. Stir the squash in to the cooked pasta, along with the spices, greek yogurt, and goat cheese.
  5. Place in to a casserole dish and top with the breadcrumbs. Then bake at 350 for 25 minutes.
  6. Serve and enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/02/a-long.html

Another HUGE HIT!  For a quicker version, drop the baking part and serve right after mixing everything together.  Always been a big fan of the breadcrumb crunch but some nights there just isn’t time.  If using a gluten free pasta, add 2 tbsp of milk to the dish before baking to prevent the noodles from drying out.

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Gives a Smile

4 Cheese Pasta Bake

mushroom_spinach_bake 

Nothing like a dairy challenge to get my husband involved with planning a meal – so thank you /52weekofcooking for that!  He tossed around lots of ideas, and at least one of them will be making an appearance in a few weeks, but for today I’m sticking with a super cheesy pasta dish that comes together in record time.  In fact, if you have some pre-made sauce in the freezer this delicious dish can be on the table well within an hour of getting home!  This was also my first time testing out some treats from Gourmet Garden, which I got as part of a blog challenge I’m participating in come February.   As for the cheeses, well I just grabbed whatever I thought would work – and then grabbed a few more!

Gives a Smile

Serves: Serves 5-6

Ingredients

1 lb angel hair pasta, precooked and set aside

2 cups favorite pasta sauce

1 vidalia onion, chopped

1 egg

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

1 tsp Gourmet Garden Chunky Garlic Paste

1 tsp Gourmet Garden Italian Herb Paste

1 cup spinach, rinsed and chopped

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1 cup ricotta cheese

1 cup baby bella mushrooms, diced

1/2 cup shredded Provolone cheese

1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Mix the egg with the Parmesan cheese until smooth then stir in the two pastes along with the spinach, onion, and red pepper flakes. Set Aside
  3. Spread 2 tbsp of sauce along the inside of a 2qt casserole dish, to include the sides
  4. Spoon 1/3 of the pasta in the casserole dish, then top with half of the ricotta cheese, half of the mushrooms, half of the onion/egg mixture, and 1/4 cup of the provolone cheese and 1/2 cup of sauce. Repeat, switching the provolone with the mozzarella cheese. Top with the last of the pasta and cheeses before finishing with the remaining sauce (1 cup) and left over provolone and mozzarella cheeses.
  5. Bake for 35 minutes, or until cheese is brown on the edges and the sauce is bubbling. Allow to sit for 5 minutes before Serving!

Notes

If not using gourmet garden pastes, sub with three cloves of minced garlic and 1/2 tbsp dried Italian herb blend

http://dancingveggies.com/2015/01/gives-a-smile.html

Needless to say one must really enjoy cheese in order to enjoy this dish, so if you’re vegan or lactose intolerant this might be a good recipe to skip.  It can be easily adapted for gluten free by switching out the whole grain pasta for a gluten free variety, of which there are more and more available!  For even more vegetables, I love that there are more and more vegetable flavored pastas – tho it does keep me from making my own.   For a super healthy option, switch out the pasta entirely for spaghetti squash – just reduce the cooking time to 25 minutes to prevent the squash from becoming totally dried out.

I have to say, using the Gourmet Garden pastes really sped up the process – and the flavors were fantastic!  I only wish more of the pastes were vegan, with the collection I got only the ginger was whey free and while that isn’t a HUGE issue for me it would still be nice.  However the convenience of the products is insane and I love that the ingredients are all organic, plus it tells you right on the container how many fresh cloves, bunches, etc went in to the container.

 Note:  I received a bunch of Gourmet Garden pastes and herbs as part of the #TripleS blog challenge, which starts February 2nd.  I was not required to use the products, or post anything about them outside of acknowledging that I received them, so all opinions and experiences are my own.