Here’s my throw together recipe – adjust yours to taste and preference.
3 cups spiralized or sliced zucchini
1/4 cup thinly sliced onion
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan
butter or olive oil
On low to medium heat saute onions and zucchini in butter or olive oil until desired softness, sprinkle in flour and stir to thicken, then add eggs and stir to mix. Add salt and mozzarella and cheddar. Stir until blended, then top with Parmesan – turn off heat and cover. Once the Parmesan is slightly melted, serve it up.
Now, to jazz this up by adding protein and calories, i would cook up some sliced beef sausage or home made beef sausage, then in the same pan, continue with this recipe.
It’s zucchini season and time to pull out the plethora of excellent recipes to use this bountiful summer squash. If someone secretly leaves zucchinis in your car or at home, be thankful!!
A bountiful number of bread and dessert recipes are found in cookbooks and internet and i will share a couple of our family favorites, but i’m focusing more this year on casseroles and main dish recipes. Here’s one i just developed sort of combining two recipes I already have. It turned out fabulously!!! Not like pizza or anything, but definitely ranks high enough that it can remain in the regular lineup of meals.
From the kitchen of Tauna M (Falconer) Powell
2 cups shredded zucchini
½ lb cooked beef sausage or beef brats* cut in small pieces
1 medium onion chopped
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups milk
1 tablespoon mustard
¼ tsp black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
¼ cup grated Parmesan
Preheat oven to 325˚F. Layer half the zucchini, onion, sausage, and cheddar cheese in a buttered oblong baking dish, 11 x 7 x 1 ½ inches; repeat. Mix eggs, milk, mustard, pepper, and salt very well, then pour over the layered ingredients. Sprinkle over top with Parmesan cheese. Cook uncovered in oven until set, 45 to 50 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes then cut into squares for serving.
Note: Once assembled, this casserole can be covered and refrigerated up to 24 hours before cooking.
*I use all beef brats from Coleman Farms grassfinished beef. However, it will also be good with my own home made beef sausage.
Pizza is one of my favorite foods. Since i was a child, Friday evening was made for pizza, which at that time was Chef Boyardee. I’ve continued that tradition with my own family with home made pizza. However, during this Optavia optimal health journey, my husband and i have been enduring cauliflower crust pizza. it’s not bad, but it’s still not my cheese stuffed crust pizza.
We don’t have time to eat out, so it’s much easier to for me to make our meals at home. Plus, i can control all the ingredients used.
Now this is my made up lean and green meal for two people. Whether or not it perfectly meets the Optavia program, i’m not sure. I’ll leave that for you to determine.
As always, try to use locally grown or produced, organic, or home grown.
*i use our home raised grass finished ground beef processed to 90% lean. For sausage, our preference, is 2 teaspoons sage, 2 teaspoons sea salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper. Blend well. Best flavor is to allow to meld for several hours. I mix up several pounds and refreeze in 1 lb packages.
‘Rice’ the cauliflower (it may only take a half a head if it’s large) in some sort of chopper, then simmer it in a dry iron skillet, stirring ever so often. A good portion of the moisture needs to steam away. Use very, very low heat and no lid. It’ll take 20 minutes or more. Then allow to cool.
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Add two eggs, the Italian seasoning, salt, and 1/4 cup cheese and stir well. Plop the mixture onto pan sprayed with cooking spray, then press into a 9 inch pie. Bake for 20 minutes.
Top the cooked crust with pizza sauce, Parmesan cheese, mushrooms, olives, remaining cheese. Bake until heated through and cheese is melted – about 7-8 minutes.
I hadn’t made this favorite of my children in several years, but since there was an opened package of beef hot dogs which needed using, i decided on a trial to see if they would be acceptable substitute for sausages. It worked out great and was a hit with my 93 year old father-in-law and husband’s 100 year old aunt this past Sunday lunch.
1 lb beef or lamb sausage links (or beef hot dogs)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup flour
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
Drizzle olive oil in an 11 x 7 x 1 1/2 inch baking dish and place sausages/hot dogs in baking dish and bake at 400ºF for 10 minutes. Whilst those are baking, mix the remaining ingredients until smooth. Remove baking dish from oven and pour batter over links/dogs. Pop dish back into the 400ºF oven uncovered for about 30 minutes until golden. Cut into squares.
Sorry that there are no photos, but have received requests for this recipe, so am publishing ahead of those. Next time i prepare this delicious recipe, i’ll take and add photos to this entry.
Egg Noodles w/Sausage & Kale*
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 lb lamb or beef sausage
½ lb kale, tough stems and center ribs discarded and leaves coarsely chopped (or spinach)
½ lb dried egg noodles
2/3 cup water
½ cup Parmesan cheese
Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then cook sausage, breaking up any lumps with a spoon, until browned, 5 to 7 minutes.
Meanwhile, blanch kale (or spinach) in a 6-quart pot of boiling salted water, uncovered, 5 minutes. Remove kale with a large slotted spoon, drain over pan, and add to cooked sausage in skillet. Sauté, stirring frequently and scraping up any brown bits from bottom of skillet. Return cooking water in pot to boil and cook egg noodles in boiling water, uncovered, until al dente. Add noodles to skillet with a slotted spoon and ½ cup reserved cooking water if necessary, tossing until combined. Stir in cheese and thin with additional cooking water in desired. Serves 6.
Tips: Retain some of the noodle cooking water and add to any leftovers for easier warming up. As always, use eggs (for making noodles) from pastured hens and sausage from grass-finished animals for best nutrition and flavour. Grow your own or buy the greens from your neighbour. I make beef sausage a few days ahead and freeze; time allows the spices; salt, sage, black pepper, to meld with the ground beef.
2 cups unbleached white or whole wheat flour
3 egg yolks
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 to 1/2 cup water
Make a well in center of flour. Add egg yolks, egg, and salt; mix thoroughly . Mix in water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough is stiff but easy to roll. Divide dough into 4 equal parts. Roll dough, one part at a time, into paper-tin rectangle on well-floured cloth-covered board. Cut into narrow strips with a knife or noodle cutter. Shake out strips and place on towel until stiff and dry, about 2 hours. Break dry strips into smaller pieces. Cook in 3 quarts boiling salted water (1 tablespoon salt) until tender, 12 to 15 minutes; drain. About 6 cups noodles. Storage: after drying, noodles can be covered and stored no longer than 1 month.
Use these noodles for the Egg Noodles w/Sausage & Kale Recipe.
8-10 ounces of grass finished ground beef or lamb or home made beef or lamb sausage
1 cup pizza sauce
Optional ingredients i usually add: sliced black olives and sliced fresh mushrooms, extra cheese
Preheat the oven to 350°F .
Use a Ninja Blender (mine is called a Fit Blender i believe) or some other type.
In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, pumpkin, sesame flour, ground flax seed, 1 cup of the mozzarella cheese, onion powder, and sea salt. Mix well. Then i add the two large eggs, 1/4 cup olive oil, and the water. Mix and combine thoroughly.
Butter a 10″ x 15″ pan (i use a stone jelly roll pan). Place the dough on the pan, then spread the dough by hand. You may have to keep your fingers wet using olive oil or water to keep it from sticking to your hands.
Bake for 20 minutes.
When you are ready, spread the pizza sauce, i sprinkle some Parmesan cheese if i have any, but usually i don’t, so i use some shredded raw cheddar or whatever i have on hand. Then crumble the cooked meat on top of that followed by optional olives and/or fresh mushrooms. Top with remaining mozzarella or other cheese. Bake for another 12 minutes.
Cut into about 12 pieces; this is very filling. One piece may fill you right up!
Encouraged by the wonderful recipe, Broccoli Mushroom Cheddar Quiche published by Cooking With A Wallflower last month, i pulled together what ingredients I had and then tweaked it a bit to meet our tastes, discovering along the way that despite adoring black olives, i did not like them in my recipe! Unfortunately, I did not have mushrooms and i think that those will be much preferred. BUT, here’s my recipe for today – easily tweakable for your own tastes.
Mix it all together with a fork and press mixture into a buttered 9-inch pie dish. Cook in a 350°F oven for 12 minutes.
Pie filling Yummies
1 cup cooked and crumbled home made beef sausage
2 cups broccoli florets (rinsed and patted dry)
2 or 3 dientes garlic, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup sliced black olives
4 large eggs
1 cup real milk
1 cup monterey jack cheese
1/2 cup cheddar cheese
Crumble and cook your homemade beef sausage in a saucepan with a lid. Once it’s done, remove with a slotted spoon leaving the drippings in the pan and add slice garlic. Saute those for a couple minutes, then add sliced olives and broccoli florets. Cover and let simmer just to steam the broccoli a bit. Don’t cook it until it gets soggy.
Mix the sausage back into the broccoli, etc. Pour off any excess moisture, but i didn’t have any. Dump the lot into your cooked pie shell. Spread the 1 cup of Monterey Jack cheese kind of over the top and mix in a bit maybe. Then whisk together the milk and eggs. Pour that over all the mixture, then top with the 1/2 cup Cheddar cheese.
Bake in a 350°F oven for 45 minutes. I stuck a toothpick in the middle right at 45 minutes and it was spot on perfect done. Let it stand maybe 15 minutes before slicing into 6-8 pieces. Serve warm.
Now, here’s an important note about the crust. Unless you want an extra thick crust, you’ll find that you have about 1/3 of it left over. Not wanting any to waste, i went ahead and buttered the end of this stone baking pan and spread it out and cooked it along with the quiche, but it’s only going to need cooking about 20 minutes! This makes really tasty crackers.