Sunday, November 24, 2013

Southwestern Chicken Soup

Considering the high today is 37 degrees, I'd say it's officially soup weather! This recipe is for a spicy southwestern chicken soup that will warm you up with one bite. It's loaded with veggies and protein, and it's super duper easy to make. It literally consists of sauteing a few veggies then throwing them in a pot with everything else. Easy enough?

*Print this recipe here.*
Southwestern Chicken Soup 
1-1.5 lbs. chicken, cooked and shredded
3-4 cups chicken broth (I use the water I boil my chicken in)
1 white onion, chopped
2 bell peppers, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
4 zucchini, chopped
2 cans diced tomatoes with green chilies
2 tsp. Cumin
1 tsp. Chili Powder
½ tsp. Red Pepper Flakes (optional)
¼ tsp. Cayenne Pepper
1 ½ tsp. Dried Cilantro
Coconut oil

Directions:
1.      In a saucepan or large pot, heat coconut oil and add onions, peppers, and garlic. Saute until garlic is fragrant and onions are translucent (5-8 minutes).
2.      In a large pot add chicken, broth, sautéed onions, peppers and garlic, zucchini, diced tomatoes with chilies, and spices.

3.      Bring to a boil and let simmer on medium heat for about 20 minutes, or until zucchini is tender.

What can I say? It was a first class meal that took me around 30 minutes to make. I'm definitely going to be making this again, especially since it's not even officially winter yet, and as I said before, the high today is 37 degrees. I see a lot of cold days in my future, but I also see a lot of warm soup to help me cope with them!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Spaghetti Squash is my favorite squash because there is nothing quite like it. I mean, it's basically vegetable pasta! What more can you ask from a squash? Until a few weeks ago, I had only seen spaghetti squash used as a substitute for spaghetti pasta, but then I stumbled upon a spaghetti squash casserole. It didn't quite tickle my fancy, so I decided to create my own. It's packed with veggies, tastes great, and can be stored in the fridge for up to five days, meaning I can make it for my whole week's worth of lunch. If Superman were a casserole, he would be this one.

Spaghetti Squash Casserole 
1 Spaghetti Squash (cooked)
1 ½ lbs. Lean Ground Beef
Coconut Oil
1 egg
1 cup Spinach, chopped
1 cup Cherry Tomatoes, halved
1 white onion, diced
1 red pepper, chopped
1 cup cauliflower florets, chopped
2 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. oregano
½ tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. cumin

Directions:
1.      Preheat oven to 400 F.
2.      Cook spaghetti squash, and scrape out meat with a fork. Directions here.
3.      Brown ground beef in a saucepan. Drain.
4.      In a sauce pan, heat coconut oil and sauté onion, tomatoes, peppers, and cauliflower. Add spices. Add spinach after onions turn translucent and wilt it down.


5.      Add squash, ground beef, and eggs to vegetables. Mix thoroughly.


6.      Transfer mixture to a casserole dish and bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes.


What can I say? It doesn't look pretty, but then again I'm not Bobby Flay, so I really don't care all that much about presentation. I can say this, however; it tastes better than it looks, which is all I care about! This dish is so versatile, so you could add some more vegetables or substitute them for different ones (I may put some broccoli in mine next time). The egg is a nice binder and keeps the whole thing from falling to a million pieces when you spoon it out, which is another plus. Spaghetti Squash Casserole: A Success!