Veggie Meatballs

The other night, I started out making turkey meatballs. I’ve never made meatballs of any kind before, but in an effort to buy enough protein for the week I had a lot of meat in the fridge and had to use the turkey (16 oz) soon — it said to freeze or use by two days from then. But when I opened the package, it was quite odiferous to say the least. So I tossed it, and proceeded with veggies only (and also put some chicken in the oven to bake in case this turned out to be a cooking fail). I might have normally jumped ship at this point and gone for preparing a different meal altogether, but I’d already done the following. In a large mixing bowl, add:

  • 1 cup gluten-free panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup graded parmeson
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 diced green pepper
  • 1/2 diced poblano pepper
  • 1/2 diced zucchini
  • 1/2 cup diced red onion
  • salt
  • pepper

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So I mixed it up. The consistency wasn’t quite thick enough, and I added 1 cup brown rice flour.

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And then I added 1/2 cup of tomato sauce (not thinking about the consistency). It was still a little on the mushy side, but I did my best to make little balls, added them to a cookie sheet coated with a little coconut butter. I baked them for about 30 minutes, and served them over rice with tomato sauce. They were good! But we concluded might have been better with a yogurt dill sauce or ranch dip of some kind. I’ll definitely be trying them again, but next time I’ll have more veggies on hand.

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Crustless Garden Quiche

So it’s been a while since I’ve posted. There are a few reasons for that: 1) my life just got a bit hectic, but for good reason — I started a new job as an Assistant Professor of Literacy at SUNY New Paltz. I’m very excited about it, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say that it’s taking up all of my time; and 2) we eat a lot of the same stuff. No shame in that, right?

Speaking of changes, I’m not a city girl anymore, so I’m thinking of changing my blog name. If you suggest a name I end up using, I’ll make you a batch of gluten-free cookies!

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Quiche has become a staple of our diet up here in the Hudson Valley. It’s easy, and provides a meal for two for at least three, if not four, meals. And amazingly, the house we’re renting for the year came with an enormous, veggie-rich garden which means I almost always have the ingredients on hand. Here’s what I do:

  1. preheat oven to 375
  2. add 5 eggs to a large mixing bowl
  3. add 8 ounces (or thereabouts) of cottage cheese (I usually use small-curd / no added salt)
  4. add 1/2 cup of milk
  5. add handful of shredded cheese (cheddar or mozzarella or mixture of any shredded cheese)
  6. add small handful of grated cheese (romano, parmesan, asiago)
  7. mix till you can’t see the yolks
  8. butter a pie dish so it doesn’t stick while baking
  9. add layer of sliced cheese (I usually use cheddar) to bottom
  10. add veggies (chopped peppers, zucchini, summer squash, asparagus, onion, broccoli, etc. — anything goes pretty much but tomatoes, which make everything too watery)
  11. pour in egg mixture
  12. add layer of shredded cheese to top (just enough to cover it but not too much so egg is still poking through)
  13. bake at 375 for 40 minutes or until no longer wet in the center
  14. let cool for about 15 minutes and enjoy!

This particular one had a mixture of poblano pepper, zucchini, and red onion in it. It was eaten up before I had a chance to take a picture of a slice! I’ve tried it before with leftover bacon, too. Yum.

quiche 2

Veggie Bliss

This post reveals exactly why I started this blog: sometimes I eat the most random stuff (especially when I’m running out of groceries), and I want to be able to remember the concoctions when they work! I didn’t get a picture until I was almost finished, as I wasn’t convinced it would be a winner, so my apologies for the somewhat messy plating (or lack thereof). Here’s what I did: sautéed some minced garlic and onion in olive oil, added leaves of kale, quarter wheels of zucchini, and shredded brussells sprouts (in that order), and cooked until the kale started to brown. I added a drizzle of rice vinegar, small handful of cilantro, and a few halved (raw, unsalted) almonds at the end and cooked for another thirty seconds. I also added some crumbled feta on top to serve. It was shockingly flavorful, and I will definitely be using it as a veggie side in the future.

Kale Chips

It seems the start of the semester has thwarted my ability to keep up with posting already, but I will still keep the photos and descriptions coming when I can. I don’t have an ‘after’ photo for this post, but kale chips have become a staple of my diet, and they’re worth a post.

1. preheat oven to 375

2. wash and dry kale stalks

3. break apart kale leaves into bite-sized pieces (keep in mind that they’ll cook down a bit in the oven)

4. in baking pan, toss kale leaves in olive oil (make sure they’re evenly but thinly coated in oil)

5. bake for twenty minutes, toss, and bake for another twenty minutes (that’s forty minutes total)

Keep an eye on them in the oven, as sometimes they crisp up more quickly than others. Put ’em in a bowl or something and serve! Crunch.

Gluten-Free Lasagna

I worked at a pizza place for three summers during college, and I learned most of what I know about cooking by helping my boss. We would make lasagna, baked ziti, spanakopita, soups, spreads, sauces, and I was her right-hand man. I’ve only ever made lasagna her way — even when I found out I was gluten-free.

This one is veggie, but you can use whatever filling you’d like. For recipe, see below.

1. Cook gluten-free lasagna noodles according to box directions. NOTE: it’s better to err on the under-cooked (as opposed to over-cooked) side of things, as the noodles start to break apart once they’ve been cooked too long.

2. Prepare sauce and vegetable or meat filling as necessary. For this lasagna, I sautéed some mushrooms, garlic, and onions and sliced up some zucchini super thin. I added the zucchini raw, and made sure to keep a little extra on the side to garnish the top of the dish.

3. Prepare ricotta mixture as follows: blend two eggs, teaspoon of minced garlic, and a pinch each of salt, pepper, oregano, basil, and parsley. Add 1 small container ricotta and mix until even.

4. Grease your pan!

5. Add thin layer of tomato sauce to bottom (this helps with keeping things non-stick).

6. Add layers as follows, x 2:

  • lasagna noodles
  • ricotta
  • veggie or meat mixture
  • sauce
  • shredded mozzarella (go light on this)
  • ground asiago or parmesan

7. Add a final layer of lasagna noodles and ricotta. Cover the ricotta layer with a layer of sauce and mozzarella. Be sure that you can see some sauce peeking through the cheese — too much cheese can ruin a perfectly good lasagna.

8. Bake at 375 for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and garnish (this one has a design made with fresh basil leaves and quartered round zucchini slices). Bake for an additional 20 minutes.