Tag Archives: cheese

Zucchini Lunch

Continuing my collection of zucchini recipes, i post this one.  I’t s really so easy it can hardly be considered a recipe.

Mandoline, spiralizer, garlic press
My home raised garlic from last year is small, so it took some time to get enough to make good flavor. Healthy garlic.

INGREDIENTS:

  • Zucchini – spiralized or sliced thinly with mandolin
  • Onion – sliced
  • Garlic – minced or chopped
  • Sea Salt
  • Pepper
  • Option toppings can include any kind of meat chopped up, shredded cheese,

DIRECTIONS:

  • Spiralize or thinly slice zucchinis into a skillet and saute until moisture is lessened
  • While saute, slice onion and add to skillet, mince garlic and add to skillet
  • Add cooked meat and warm through.
  • Top with sliced hard cooked eggs, cheese if desired.

Zucchini and Onions

Zucchini, Cheese, Eggs, Meat
This tasty dish will replace my daily lettuce salad until fall greens crop come along.  My dish today has leftover corned beef.

 

Zucchini & Cheese Casserole

What a delicious surprise this recipe is i found in an old recipe book a good friend gave me.  In my search on how to prepare zucchiniwithout making a sweet bread, i stumbled on this one!  Have already made it multiple times to great reviews and made a couple more that i put into the freezer with cooking instructions written with a Sharpie marker on the foil covering it.

Zucchini & Cheese Enchiladas or Casserole*

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp chili powder (optional)
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups chopped onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
  • 1 large bell pepper chopped (optional)
  • 6 cups chopped zucchini
  • 16 to 18 corn tortillas
  • 2 cups chopped tomatoes

Directions:

In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Stir in the flour, chili powder, and cumin to make a thick paste.  Add the milk, a little at a time, using a wire whisk.  Slowly add the cheese, stirring constantly until cheese is melted.  Season with salt and pepper.  Remove from heat and set aside.  Preheat oven to 400˚F.  Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the onions and garlic and sauté for 5 minutes.  Add bell pepper and zucchini and sauté 2 more minutes.  Add ¼ cup of water, cover, and steam veggies until tender.  Remove vegetables from heat, and drain excess liquid.  Gently mix in 2/3 of the cheese sauce.  Lightly oil a 9×13-inch baking dish.  To assemble, place two tortillas side by sade at one end of the pan.  Spread a generous amount of filling down the center of the tortillas, then fold them over and roll up the tortillas.  Place filled enchiladas seam-side-down in the pan.  Continue in this manner until you have filled the pan.  Spoon remaining sauce on top and garnish to tomatoes.  Bake, uncovered, for 20 -25 minutes.  Serves 8

*I prefer making this as a casserole since it’s much easier.  i do take the time to prepare freshly made corn tortillas with Masa Harina, then loosely layer the flavorful tortillas on the bottom of the pan, then top with half the zucchini/cheese mixture, layer another set of tortillas and spread the remaining zucchini/cheese mixture.  Spread the remaining 1/3 of cheese mixture on top, then dot the whole casserole with diced tomatoes.

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Home grown zucchini, canned diced tomatoes (my tomatoes are WAY behind in growth), and i found this Masienda brand of Masa Harina, bought it and LOVE it, then flavor is awesome.
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but i do find it challenging to make the tortillas.  I have greatly improved my technique and final product since taking this photo.
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Casserole ready to pop into the oven.
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Rolling Prairie Cookbook available from several vendors but published Rolling Prairie Farmers Alliance in Northeast Kansas.

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To keep from needing to drain extra water out of the cooking mix, i chop the zucchini then set it inside a large piece of cheesecloth.  Let it rest at least 10 minutes, then squeeze the heck out of it.  A great amount of green flavorful water will be removed.  I freeze this water up for making soup later this winter.

Zucchini-Egg-Sausage Casserole

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.

ZUCCHINI-EGG-SAUSAGE CASSEROLE

From the kitchen of Tauna M (Falconer) Powell

INGREDIENTS:

  • 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
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tablespoon mustard
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan

DIRECTIONS:

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.

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I cut the brats into small pieces using scissors, then cook gently in a cast iron skillet.

Zucchini Egg Cheese Sausage Casserole

Zucchini Egg Cheese Sausage Casserole
I accidentally put the Parmesan on before i poured the milk and egg mixture over top. Oh, well…..
Zucchini Egg Cheese Sausage Casserole
Out of the oven after 50 minutes. Let stand about 10 minutes before cutting into serving sizes. YUM!

 

Five Minute Nacho Cheese Sauce

5 MINUTE NACHO CHEESE SAUCE

INGREDIENTS:

  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 5 tablespoons flour
  • 2 ⅔ cup whole milk
  • 16 oz medium cheddar cheese, shredded
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ teaspoon chili powder (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS:

Add the butter and flour to a small sauce pot.  Heat and whisk the butter and flour together until they become bubbly and foamy.  Continue to cook and whisk the bubbly mixture for about 60 seconds.

Whisk the milk into the flour and butter mixture.  Turn the heat up slightly and allow the milk to come to a simmer whilst whisking.  When it reaches a simmer, the mixture will thicken.  Once it’s thick enough to coat a spoon, turn off the heat.

Stir in the shredded cheddar, one handful at a time, until melted into the sauce.  If needed, lace the pan over a low flame to help the cheese melt.  Do not overheat the cheese sauce.

Once all the cheese is melted into the sauce, stir in the salt and chili powder.  Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed.  If the sauce becomes too thick, simply whisk in an additional splash of milk.

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Enjoy this nacho cheese plain…..
nachos
or add a bit of red pepper, garlic, or whatever your fancy!

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

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.

INGREDIENTS:

For the Crust:

Toppings:

*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.

DIRECTIONS:

‘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.

Slice and enjoy!

tauna

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Cauliflower head cut – Save the leaves and most of the stem for an onion substitute.  The leaves have a spicy flavor which is excellent of soups.  Recipes for the leaves; Lumpia, Hamburger Soup.
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Place florets into a food chopper.
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Riced cauliflower in just a few seconds.
Preparing Cauliflower crust
Steam away excess moisture before adding eggs, sea salt, spices, cheese
Cauliflower crust
Mix the cauliflower rice and added ingredients well.
Cauliflower crust mix
Plop the mixture on a sprayed pan. This one is aluminum, which i don’t like, i’m going to try this on stone. Our coach said she gets along well with these holes and so i’ve tried that first.

 

 

Cooked cauliflower pizza crust
Pat the mixture to about 9 inch pie, then cook in a 400 F oven for 20 minutes.
Layering the pizza pie
Add the pizza sauce and sprinkle Parmesan cheese.
Cauliflower pizza
Cauliflower pizza with sauce, Parmesan cheese, beef sausage, mushrooms, and olives
Cauliflower Pizza
And the final topping of shredded mozzarella
Cauliflower pizza
Serve it up best hot out of the oven.
Cauliflower Pizza
Yum!

Cheese and Rice Casserole

An excellent non meat recipe.  But meat can easily be layered on and consider other vegetables.  Pictured here, I used sliced zucchini from my garden and added ground chicken breast from pastured poultry raised by my friends at Pigeon Creek Farm.

Cheese and Rice Casserole  (Riso e Formaggio) 

8 servings 

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup uncooked regular rice (or barley or couscous or any combination thereof)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon dry mustard
  • ½ teaspoon red pepper sauce (optional
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 medium onion (I used green onions)
  • 1 medium green pepper, chopped (optional)
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella or Cheddar cheese (8 ounces)
  • 4 eggs, slightly beaten
  • 2 ½ cups milk
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

 Heat water, rice, salt, mustard, red pepper sauce, and pepper to boiling, stirring once or twice; reduce heat.  Cover and simmer 30 minutes.  (Do not lift cover or stir.)  Remove from heat.  Fluff rice lightly with fork; cover and let steam 5 to 10 minutes.

Layer half the rice mixture in bottom of greased 11 x 7 x 1 ½ inch baking dish.  Top with 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (and 1 cup vegetable if desired); repeat.  Whisk together 4 eggs and 2 ½ cups of milk then pour over rice mixture.  Sprinkle with ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese.  (Casserole can be covered and refrigerated up to 24 hours at this point.)  Cook uncovered in 350°F oven until set; 45 to 50 minutes.  Let stand 10 minutes. Cut into squares.

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Friday Night Homemade Pizza

A tradition in my family growing up was to have pizza on Friday night.  I’ve carried that through to my family and seldom do we miss having home made pizza on Friday evening, even though the children are adults now and two live away from here.

Growing up, home made pizza was Chef Boyardee from a box.  No matter; Mom doctored up so it was great!.

Here’s my recipe.

For the dough be sure to allow at least 2 hours. (this makes two large crusts, so before the second rise, i stick 1/2 into a Ziplock Freezer bag and pop it into the freezer. Just bring it out of the bag enough time ahead for it to thaw – don’t leave it in the bag because it will rise as it thaws)

Pizza Dough - Wall Street Journal

PIZZA DOUGH

THE INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups all purpose or bread flour
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 2 teaspoon sea or Real salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 1/3 cups warm water

THE STEPS

Add flours, honey, yeast, and salt to the bowl of a food processor or electric mixer and process to combine  (i just put it in the bowl of my Kitchenaid Artisan bowl and mix by hand briefly).  Add water and 2 tablespoons olive oil and continue to process until dough forms a ball.  If dough is sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.  If dough is too dry, add water 1 tablespoon at a time.

Scrape the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until you have a smooth elastic ball, about 5 minutes.  I use my Kitchenaid Artisan mixer.

Form dough into a smooth ball and place in a large bowl greased with olive oil. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside until dough doubles in size, about 1 hour.  Cut risen dough in half.  Knead each half briefly and then shape into a ball.  Place the two balls on a lightly floured surface and cover loosely with a clean towel or plastic wrap.  Let rest 1 hour at room temperature or in the refrigerator up to 24 hours.  If refrigerated, let dough come to room temperature before continuing.

Use a rolling pin to roll out and your hands to stretch each ball into a circle or whatever size your pizza pan.  If dough becomes too elastic, place it in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes to relax before continuing.

The toppings:

That’s wide open and just your favorites.

If you want stuffed crust – Usually, but not always, i roll out the dough large enough that i can place thin slices of cheese along the edge of the pan and cover with dough for stuffed crust.

I top the dough with home made pizza sauce (still perfecting it, but it’s pretty good) or whatever commercial product you like.

Top with Parmesan or Parmesan mix shredded cheese.  I use 4C Homestyle Brand Parmesan or Parmesan/Romano Mix both of which i buy at Wal-Mart.

Next on is previous cooked, drained, and cooled 1 lb of our home raised ground beef (or i plan ahead and turn it into beef sausage – i don’t eat pig).

Thick sliced Portabella (Babybella) mushrooms and sliced natural olives.

Shredded whole milk mozzarella cheese, but often i add Cabot Extra Sharp White Cheddar in the 2 lbs package which is also available at Wal-Mart. 

Enjoy and Shabbat Shalom!

tauna