Well Dined

15Jan/140

Butternut Squash, Caramelized Onion, and Goat Cheese – Three Ways

Well Dined | Buttery Pappardelle with Roasted Butternut Squash, Caramelized Onions, and Goat Cheese

So I got this combination of ingredients into my head and couldn't stop thinking about all the ways I could use them.  Pasta, pizza, tarts - the list goes on.  I decided to caramelize a big batch of onions, roast a big squash, and use them all week in a few different dishes.

Well Dined | Roasted Butternut Squash

First off, I peeled and cut up a large (4 lb) butternut squash and laid the cubes out on a baking sheet.  I drizzled them with olive oil and seasoned with salt, pepper, and a little nutmeg.  Then I roasted them at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes.  I used some right away, and stored the rest in an airtight container in the fridge.

Well Dined | Caramelized Onions

For the onions, I bought one of those bags that has about 5 onions in it, sliced them all, and threw them in a large pan with olive oil.  After they turned translucent and soft, I turned the heat down from med-hi to med-lo and let them caramelize.  This will take anywhere from 20 minutes to 45 minutes.  About halfway through, I added a few sprigs of thyme.  Once they were really brown, I added a splash of sherry to de-glaze the pan and removed the thyme stems.  Again, I used some right away, and stored the rest in an airtight container in the fridge.

6Jan/140

Butternut Squash, Apple, and Sausage Lasagna Rolls

Well Dined | Butternut Squash, Apple, and Sausage Lasagna

Oh my gosh, you guys.  This might be my favorite butternut squash pasta since the life-saving mac and cheese.

Well Dined | Butternut Squash, Apple, and Sausage Lasagna

Sheets of homemade pasta filled with roasted butternut squash, apple, onion, sausage, and three cheeses; topped with a creamy sage bechamel.  It's totally swoon worthy.

Well Dined | Butternut Squash, Apple, and Sausage Lasagna

The filling is a little complicated, but totally worth it.  While your butternut squash is roasting in the oven, mix up and brown your sausage mixture.  Did I mention that you are creating your own sausage, so you can adjust the spices to your liking?  And you can be sure that there are no weird preservatives or sugar?  Awesome.  Anyway, next you saute some onions, garlic, and apple.  Plus a little white wine - aww, yeah.

Well Dined | Butternut Squash, Apple, and Sausage Lasagna

Oh my gosh this filling.  It's insane.  You may want to make extra to use in other ways.  I'll talk about that later.

30Dec/130

2013 Wrap Up

Well Dined | 2013 Wrap-Up

Well, Folks - it's been a great year!  I look forward to keep sharing delicious and (sometimes) healthy recipes with you in the years to come.  Until then - here are my most pinned recipes of 2013!

Well Dined | Sweet Potato and Turkey Shepard's Pie

#1 - This healthy version of Shepard's Pie with Sweet Potato and Turkey.  I find this funny because the photos from this post are so bad!

Well Dined | Homemade Meat Ravioli

#2 - Homemade Meat Ravioli - yum!

Well Dined | Homemade Spinach Ravioli

#3 - Homemade Spinach Ravioli.  The raviolis are popular!

30Oct/131

Butternut Squash and Kale Mac and Cheese

Well Dined | Butternut Squash and Kale Mac and Cheese

So I actually made this a year ago and didn't manage to post it before it was way past butternut squash season, doh!  I figured I would just hold off and post about it the next Fall, which is what I am doing now.  The problem is, my photography has improved leaps and bounds since then so these photos look really awful.  I am so sorry in advance, but the mac and cheese is really good.  I promise.

Well Dined | Butternut Squash and Kale Mac and Cheese

I saw this recipe on an episode of The Chew, and the idea was that it was orange and black for Halloween.  Orange from the squash, black from the kale.  Except that kale is green, even when it's wilted...  Whatever - it uses Fall produce and it's delicious, so let's pretend it works.

Well Dined | Butternut Squash and Kale Mac and Cheese

Cook up some bacon (I used pancetta because stuff and things), add some butter, sweat some onions and garlic, wilt some kale - awesome.  So here's where the original recipe gets weird (The Chew website is notoriously bad at reviewing their recipes) - it says to have 1 butternut squash, peeled and diced, and to saute the squash in the pan.  Then later it says to add in the butternut squash puree.  What butternut squash puree?  There is no butternut squash puree in the ingredient list.  Huh?  Also - sauteed squash?  Meh.  So here's what I did (as you can see in the previous picture) - tossed that cubed squash with olive, salt, pepper, and nutmeg; then roasted it.  Yummy.  Then I took half the roasted squash and mashed it.  Ah-ha!  Now there is butternut squash puree, sort of.

27Sep/130

Not Pasta – Veggie Julienne

Well Dined | Sauteed Vegetable Julienne

I am trying to eliminate, or at least greatly reduce, my carb intake.  But, man, I just really love pasta.  If anybody else is struggling with this, and I'm sure there are many, this is a really great recipe.  I know what you're thinking - it's not the same - and you're right, it's  not.  But I don't think you will miss the pasta when you discover how much flavor and texture these have!

Well Dined | Sauteed Vegetable Julienne

Mmmm - veggies.  I got my mandoline out, thinking it would make this a breeze, but it turns out that my particular one really sucks at using the whole length of the vegetable.  So I switched to this bad boy and it worked brilliantly.

Well Dined | Sauteed Vegetable Julienne

The colors!  Now I really like using spaghetti squash if I have a great sauce, but this recipe has more color and flavor, making it great on its own.

Well Dined | Sauteed Vegetable Julienne

Bonus - I followed the recipe and used red onion and garlic, but I think that you could use shallot in place of both and make it even simpler!  Super bonus - it cooks in less than 5 minutes!

Sauteed Vegetable Julienne
adapted from Skinny Taste
serves 2-4

1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 cup red onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
8 oz zucchini, cut into julienne strips (with a mandolin or peeler)
8 oz yellow squash, cut into julienne strips (with a mandolin or peeler)
4 oz (1 medium) carrot, cut into julienne strips (with a mandolin or peeler)
salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add the oil and onions and cook until fragrant, 2 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more.

Increase heat to medium-high and add the remaining vegetables, season with salt and pepper to taste, and cook until the vegetables are tender-crisp, about 2-3 minutes.  Adjust salt as needed and serve hot.

14Aug/130

Gnocchi with Summer Squash, Corn, and Goat Cheese

Well Dined | Gnocchi with Summer Squash, Corn, and Goat Cheese

I find it hard to come up with dinner ideas in the summer, I don't know if anyone else has this problem.  All I want to do is snack on fruit, salads, or fresh tomatoes with cheese.  And I definitely don't want to hang out in the kitchen for too long.  But this?  I would seriously make this every week if my husband would let me.  This is the BEST summer dish ever.  Gnocchi, summer squash, and fresh sweet corn sauteed in butter and topped with goat cheese, basil, chives, and a splash of lemon juice - perfection.  Plus (other than boiling the water), it takes less than 10 minutes to put together!

Well Dined | Gnocchi with Summer Squash, Corn, and Goat Cheese

Just look at it, you know you want it.  Warm and filling, but not heavy, with bright pops of veg and fresh herbs, it's the goat cheese that sends it over the edge into awesome territory.  If you crumble the cheese on top and don't stir it in, then you get a little bit of melted creaminess but also bits of cold that really compliment the gnocchi.  Also, I used goat butter - cuz I'm FANCY... and it's delicious.

Well Dined | Gnocchi with Summer Squash, Corn, and Goat Cheese

I served it as a side dish with salmon, but it would go well with chicken and it's perfect on it's own, as well.  Swing by your local farmer's market, snag some fresh produce, and let's get cooking!

6Feb/130

Fall Pasta Dishes

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I've been playing with combining squash and pasta for comforting Fall/Winter dishes.  Like last weeks White Lasagna or the Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells from the beginning of the month.  And now I have a few more, starting with this Butternut Squash and Leek Pasta Sauce.

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This is simple and delicious - pureed squash, leeks, garlic, butter, sage, and Parmesan form a rich and creamy sauce to perfectly coat spaghetti.

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Next up is Pumpkin Macaroni and Cheese with Amaretti Crumbles.

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Roasted pumpkin combined with noodles, cheesy bechamel, and sage.

SAM_2908'Then topped with delicious almond cookies and baked.  Yum!  So comforting in cold weather.

31Jan/132

Ratatouille

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Ratatouille - a delicious french vegetable dish that is usually kind of like a stew.  I found a recipe from WendyinKK that was inspired by the more upscale version presented in the Disney film.  Beautifully sliced veggies layered in a casserole - this is so gorgeous and hearty.  It is time consuming though, so be prepared.

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Eggplant, bell pepper, roma tomatoes, yellow squash, zucchini.  You will probably want to bust out the mandolin slicer for this one, unless your knife skills are really good.

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Such beautiful slices!  You will need to saute the eggplant and squash slices to release their moisture and enhance their flavor.

4Jan/130

Butternut Squash Stuffed Shells

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Spiced butternut squash puree?  Creamy bechamel?  Gooey cheese?  Yes please!  This dish is so comforting and delicious - just perfect for fall.

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Roast  some butternut squash with olive oil, salt, pepper, and nutmeg.  Mash it up with mascarpone, Parmesan, brown butter, garlic, and shallots.

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Stuff the filling into large pasta shells - I used whole wheat to add a semblance of health.  I found one box of shells to be too many, actually - so I filled the others with cheese and tomato sauce.

24Sep/121

Food ‘n Flix – It’s Complicated

After missing a few months, I am finally back for the September Food 'n Flix movie, hosted by France at Beyond the Peel.  The movie for this month was It's Complicated, starring Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin, and Steve Martin.  Streep and Baldwin play a couple that have been divorced for over a decade but fall into an affair with each other after their youngest leaves for college - despite Baldwin being remarried and his cheating being the reason for their divorce in the first place.  Martin plays a new love interest for Streep who she could really hit it off with - if her affair with her ex wasn't always getting in the way!

In the film, Streep owns a bakery and is an amazing home cook (her food being one of the things Baldwin misses most about her).  I was inspired by her gorgeous vegetable garden and her pastry skills to try a new version of my Squash Galette.