Browsing articles from "October, 2011"

Halloween Cupcakes

Halloween Cupcakes
I didn’t want to make cupcakes this week. I swear I didn’t. Let’s be honest, after those cinnamon rolls last week, I shouldn’t have made cupcakes. I even had a perfectly delicious and healthy stuffed squash recipe that I was ready to post. That is until I realized what sweet filled holiday was right around the corner- Halloween! Could I really post a recipe for Quinoa Stuffed Squash the day before Halloween? Surely some sort of ghoul or goblin would come to haunt me for committing this culinary blunder. It is Halloween after all! This is the holiday that celebrates, and even encourages, our love of all things sweet. Entire isles of the supermarket are filled with jumbo sized bags of mini candy bars, orange & black M&Ms, and that iconic sugary treat we call candy corn. Who am I to fight the primal urge to dress up like superheroes and slutty nurses so we can stuff ourselves with sugar. Halloween Cupcakes

So I gave in, the squash recipe will have to wait till mid-week. By then most of us will be sick from over indulging on the left-over candy that we bought for the trick-or-treaters, the bag of assorted goodies that was confiscated from the kids after their night of fun (for the sake of their health, of course), or the sticky popcorn balls that your co-worker’s grandmother makes every year. A nice, healthy stuffed squash will be just what the doctor ordered. For now though, I say give in to the sweet temptations. After all, it wouldn’t be Halloween without slutty nurses eating chocolate frosted cupcakes.

Comment and Share:     Pin It

Roasted Squash Cinnamon Rolls

Squash Roasted Rolls

As promised, the squash journey continues. This week I  have taken on the ominous Blue Hubbard Squash. This beastly, bumpy, blue –tinted behemoth can be a bit intimidating because of its size. However, once you get past the monstrosity factor and figure out how to crack this baby open, the reward is a sweet, smooth dark yellow flesh that is oh so yummy.

I have been making this recipe, formerly called “Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls” for years. While they were good, some would even say delicious, I decided to mix it up a bit this year and substitute squash for the pumpkin. I’ve heard that the Hubbard squash is a great alternative to pumpkin because while it has a similar flavor the consistency is far smoother. Anyone who has even cooked a pumpkin and tried to mash it knows just how stringy it can be. Don’t get me wrong, I still think that pumpkin is great for cooking, and I will definitely be posting a pumpkin recipe or two sometime soon, but in  this recipe the Hubbard squash simply blew the pumpkin away. Blue Hubbard Squash

Before we start in on the recipe I feel obligated to give a bit of a disclaimer here. This is a long post…and this is a time consuming recipe. Stick with me though, because in the end when you are rewarded with the  soft, pillowy squash-filled dough oozing with an ohhhy, gooey, cinnamony filling you simply won’t care that you spent an entire afternoon making them. Besides, if you go all out like I did and roast up an entire 11-pound squash, as a bonus you will have delicious leftover roasted squash that you can turn into a whole bunch of other recipes!

I am getting a bit ahead of myself though. The first step to cooking with a Blue Hubbard is to get that thing open. Despite their beastly reputation, a Hubbard does not have to be..well, a beast. This recipe only calls for one cup of squash so if you want to make your life easier go ahead and get the smallest one you can find. I even saw a variety called Baby Hubbard while I was at the farm stand. Most of those probably only weighed a very manageable 3-4 pounds. However, if you are a squash lover like me, or just feeling adventurous, go for it and get the big one! The leftover squash can be used in so many ways. And besides, wrestling with this beast was kind of fun. I decided to use the time honored tradition of dropping the squash on the ground to crack it open. I put it in a plastic bag, lifted it above my head, and let it fall (I did this outside on the deck because we have ceramic tile in our kitchen and I was afraid I might crack it ). Sure enough, after one fall the squash split in two. They were still two pretty big pieces though so I threw it down again and this time it broke into a bunch of manageable size parts. The next steps were simple-  scrape out the seeds, peel off the skin, cut into roughly 1-inch size chunks and roast in a 375° for about 40 minutes or until tender. Once your squash is roasted to perfection, you can use a potato masher or food processor to turn it into a smooth purée. Set aside one cup of the mashed squash for the cinnamon roll recipe. If you went whole hog, or rather whole squash, and got yourself a big boy here are a few ideas for how to use your leftover squash:

  • Mash it up, add a bit of cream or milk, throw in some spices (rosemary, cayenne pepper, or sage would all be good ) and you have a soup.
  • Use the roasted cubes in a chicken pot pie!
  • Add the puréed squash to mashed potatoes for an autumn twist on a classic favorite.
  • Substitute the roasted Hubbard for Butternut in this recipe for squash Mac n’ Cheese (Omit step number two).
  • Mix the roasted cubes with wild rice, caramelized onions and a bit of sausage for a super quick meal.
  •  Make a squash pizza! Roasted squash makes an amazing pizza topping. Use a base of ricotta cheese, garlic and a bit of mozzarella. Top with squash, sautéed shallots and a bit of crispy bacon or pancetta.
  • Package the leftover squash in freezer bags and save for later.

There’s so much more you could do with the leftover roasted squash, but for now let’s get busy and make these rolls! Squash Cinnamon Rolls

Comment and Share:     Pin It

Baked Red Cabbage with Apples

I know, I know. I made this grand announcement last week that I was going on a squash filled journey and promised you new and exciting squash recipes – I bet you were hoping for more fun facts too. So what do I do? I go and post a recipe about cabbage. Cabbage isn’t even one of my favorite vegetables. I am often drawn to the cabbage because of its pretty purple leaves, and I love a nice crunchy coleslaw with a tangy vinaigrette, but more often than not I am not sure what to do with this large vegetable that looks oddly like a brain when you slice it open. TAW00917

So when I plucked this singular, perfectly formed head of cabbage out of my garden (yes, we grew just one cabbage this year) I knew I wanted to make something different, and I knew just where to turn for an exceptional recipe. I am lucky enough to own a copy of an amazing book by James Peterson aptly called, Vegetables. It is an amazing resource for all things veggie and the place where I often turn when ITAW00894 am looking for a simple recipe that highlights a particular vegetable, or just some basic information on how best to prepare a vegetable. I knew this recipe was the one as soon as soon as I saw it because it included apples. I’ve always been a sucker for the combo of tangy cabbage with sweet apples and this recipe had one even more irresistible ingredient…bacon. Okay, I know bacon is NOT a part of healthy cooking and for the most part we are a turkey bacon kind of household, but in this recipe a few slices of thick-cut maple smoked bacon is just what the doctor ordered (ha ha). I did make some adjustments to the amount of bacon in this dish though. The original recipe was called “Baked Cabbage with Apples and Bacon” and the addition of bacon in the title gives you a hint to how much bacon was called for- an entire half pound! I just couldn’t do it, delicious or not, I want to live long enough to enjoy more bacony meals so I cut the amount down by more than half. My version includes just 6 slices of bacon, and with eight servings in the entire dish that’s less than one piece per serving. Enough to add that yummy flavor without so much of the guilt. TAW00981

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Comment and Share:     Pin It

Subscribe by e-mail

Enter your e-mail address to receive notifications of new posts by email
my foodgawker gallerymy healthy aperture gallery
Certified Yummly Recipes on