Saturday, February 13, 2010

How I Fought Cabin Fever

So the weekend after a week snowed in and no transportation can lead to some pretty severe cabin fever. I couldn't stand to watch any more tv and I was panicking at the amount of fresh produce I had on hand thanks to groceries paid for by the sympathetic parents and the first two weeks of my C.S.A. So naturally, I thought it was a good idea to make dinner. Three times. By the way, this post is taking me forever to write as I am extremely tired from basically cooking for the entire afternoon.

The first dish was made with the intention of freezing it for later consumption. It's called a deconstructed lasagna, and is really simple, just lasagna ingredients mixed together. It's supposed to be healthy for you, but it really needs something else. I think it's salt, Justin says hot sauce would do the trick. I wasn't going to use this picture as it looks like the food is going to fall off the table, but you can see my dog's reaction to my cooking, so I had to post it.

Deconstructed Lasagna

1 lb extra-lean ground beef
1/2 cup yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, diced
2 cups eggplant, unpeeled and cubed
1/4 cup carrots, peeled and diced
1 cup no-salt-added tomato sauce, divided
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 cup fresh spinach, chopped
1 1/2 cups whole wheat fusilli pasta
1 cup whole wheat elbow macaroni (I just used 2 1/2 cups curly pasta cause it made more economical sense to me)
1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/2 cup tomato, diced
10 fresh basil leaves, torn
1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup part-skim mozzarella, shredded

1. In a large skillet (with a lid) over medium-high heat, saute beef, onion, garlic, eggplant and carrots until meat is cooked thoroughly, about 10 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup sauce, oregano and pepper. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Then uncover and stir in spinach until just beginning to wilt.

2. Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions in a medium pot. Drain and set aside in a bowl.

3. In a medium bowl stir together ricotta, tomato, basil and oil.

4. In a large bowl, add beef mixture, both pastas, remaining 1/2 cup sauce and moz, stirring until well combined. Then stir in ricotta mixture, until all contents are combined. Serve, garnished with additional basil leaves.

This second recipe became Justin's dinner tonight. After all the cooking, I actually ate leftovers. I just wanted to cook, not eat. Weird. Anyway, I didn't think this needed anything, and I didn't have yogurt, so I used sour milk, but it was really great. I also had more turkey than it called for. Also, you should make sure you have a large oven-safe container, cause I had to use two.

Turkey Pot Pie

2 cups cooked long-grain brown rice
1 Tbsp plus 2 tsp olive oil, divided
1 oz Parmigiano Reggiano, finely grated (about 1/4 cup)
sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
12 oz boneless, skinless turkey breast, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 medium carrots, peeled and cut (1 cup)
1 white turnip, peeled and cut (1 cup)
1 medium leek, white and light-green parts, sliced into 1/4-inch half moons
1/3 cup red onion, finely diced
3 Tbsp spelt flour
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1/3 cup low-fat plain yogurt
2 Tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 Tbsp fresh sage, finely chopped

1. Preheat oven to 375.

2. In a bowl, combine rice, 1 tsp oil and cheese and mix well. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

3. In a large nonstick, heat 1 tsp oil over medium-high heat. Add turkey and cook, turning often, until golden brown and just cooked trough, about 6 minutes. Remove turkey from pan and set aside. Return skillet to stove, lower heat to medium and add remaining 1 tbsp oil. Add carrots, turnip, leek and onion and cook, stirring often, until vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add flour and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add broth and stir until mixture begins to simmer and thicken, about 4 minutes. Stir in yogurt and mix well. Add reserved turkey, parsley and sage and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Pour turkey mixture unto an oven-safe baking dish. Top with rice mixture in an even layer and bake until filling is bubbling and rice is light golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before serving.

*both recipes from Clean Eating Jan/Feb 2010

The third recipe is a two bean and kale soup that I only made for lunches and two recipes and pictures are enough for one day's post! Tomorrow or Monday I hope to post about Justin's attempt to cook for me for Valentine's Day. Awww!

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm Turkey Pot Pie - Love pot pies. Looks like you guys are doing a great job!