Recipes, Seasonal, Sunday dinner

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Happy Fall Ya’ll! We may not have the fall weather here in Florida but we can create those delicious fall flavors! 

Acorn squash gets roasted to perfection and tossed with chicken sausage, kale, cranberries, pecans and melty goat cheese for the perfect salty and sweet combo.

Ingredients

Acorn squash

  • 2 acorn squash medium
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt or more
  • black pepper freshly ground

Squash filling

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 onion small, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 pint mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 10 oz chicken sausage, crumbled
  • 4 oz kale, chopped 
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ½ cup pecans, chopped
  • 4 oz goat cheese 

Instructions 

Roast acorn squash

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Cut off the top and the bottom of each acorn squash to create a flat base. Make sure not to cut too deep into the base of the squash. 

Slice each squash in half. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and fleshy strands tangled with the seeds.

Place acorn squash cut sides up on a baking sheet. 

Drizzle the cut sides of acorn squashes with olive oil and rub the oil into the squash. Season generously with salt and pepper. 

Turn the squash over, and place it cut sides down on a baking sheet.

Roast in the preheated oven at 400 F for 30 minutes.

Make squash filling

Make the sausage filling while the squash is being roasted in the oven.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil, add diced onion and garlic, and cook it on medium-high heat for about 2 minutes until cooked and a bit charred.

Add the chopped mushrooms, and saute until soft. 

Add crumbled sausage and rosemary, cook on medium heat until the sausage is completely cooked through.

Add fresh kale and cook for another 5 minutes on medium heat until the kale wilts.

Add dried cranberries and chopped pecans and mix everything.

Season with salt and pepper. 

How to stuff acorn squash

By this time, you have roasted the acorn squash for 30 minutes. Remove them from the oven and turn cooked squash halves cut sides up.

Divide the sausage filling among the 4 halves and stuff the squash until the mixture is leveled or a little bit higher. Sprinkle each half with goat cheese. 

Bake the stuffed acorn squash in the preheated oven at 350 F for 10 or 20 more minutes until the sausage mixture is heated through.

Healthy, Recipes

Shrimp Pad Thai with Spaghetti Squash

This homemade Pad Thai with spicy shrimp, spaghetti squash, peanuts and cilantro for a low carb dish you will prepare again and again. It’s super easy to make, the entire dish can be ready in 15 minutes flat.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 large Spaghetti Squash
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lb. Shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 pint mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 Eggs Beaten
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons Peanut butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Rice vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce or Coconut Aminos
  • 1 Tablespoon Sriracha
  • 1 TablespoonSesame seed oil
  • 1 Cup Bean Sprouts
  • ½ Cup Dry Roasted Peanuts
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • ½ Cup Chopped fresh cilantro

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 

Cut squash in half and remove membrane and seeds. Then brush both sides with olive oil, inside and out. Bake on a foil lined baking sheet until tender (45 minutes) with the cut side down.

Once cooked, remove from the oven allow the squash to cool upright for 10 minutes. Using a fork, rake the inside of the squash and move the spaghetti to a bowl.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add in the shrimp and cook on each side until pink and no longer translucent.  Remove from the pan.

Add the onions to the pan and saute, about 3-5 minutes.  Push the onion to one side and add the mushrooms, saute until cooked. Mix the onion and mushrooms together, season with salt and pepper. Make well in between the vegetables, add the beaten egg.  Scramble the egg with a spatula, then combine with the vegetables.

Add in the garlic, peanut butter, rice vinegar, soy sauce,sesame oil and Sriracha.  Stir until all combined and scrape any browned bits or egg from the bottom of the skillet.

Add in the cooked spaghetti squash, peanuts, and lime juice.  Toss with tongs until combined.  Top with the cilantro and shrimp and serve.

Recipes, Sunday dinner

Truffle Salisbury Steak

Tender seasoned beef patties smothered in mushrooms & shallots baked in a rich a decadent gravy.

Salisbury steak is the ultimate comfort food. Here’s a twist on an oldie… In this recipe I made some slight changes to dress it up!

The patties are made with lean beef because it has a lot of flavor but it’s not overly greasy. The meat is mixed with truffle oil, barbeque sauce, Worcestershire sauce, cheese and seasonings, then formed into oval shaped “steaks”.

The patties are cooked to golden brown, and then a simple gravy is made with shallots, mushrooms, beef broth and a little flour which is used as a thickener.

The end result is tender flavorful patties that are just smothered in rich gravy. 

You can serve them over mashed potatoes or my favorite wild rice. 

INGREDIENTS 

Meat Mixture:

  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon barbecue sauce 
  • 4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup shredded Italian blend cheese
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • ½ teaspoon dried parsley 
  • 1 egg
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon truffle oil or olive oil

Gravy:

  • 4 shallots, thinly slices 
  • 1 pint sliced mushrooms 
  • 2 cups beef broth, more if needed for thinning
  • 1 teaspoon truffle oil, if using
  • 1 tablespoon barbecue 
  • 4 dashes Worcestershire
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme 
  • 2 tablespoon flour, add more if needed
  • Salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

For the meat mixture: 

Combine all the ingredients. Knead until all combined. Form into 4 to 6 oval patties.

Fry the patties in a skillet with the butter and oil over medium-high heat on both sides until no longer pink in the middle. Remove from the skillet and pour off any excess grease.

For the gravy: 

Reduce the heat to medium and add in the mushrooms. Cook for 2 minutes then add in the sliced shallots. Stir and cook until golden brown and somewhat soft, for several minutes. Add the beef stock, truffle oil, barbecue, and Worcestershire. Sprinkle in the dried herbs and combine. 

Make a well in the middle of the pan and add the flour. Whisk until combined. 

Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper and more broth if needed for thinning. Then return the patties to the gravy. Spoon the gravy over the top and let them simmer and heat back up for a couple of minutes.

Serve over wild rice, white rice or mashed potatoes. 

Healthy, Recipes

Summer Zucchini Skillet

This quick, one-pot ground turkey skillet with zucchini, corn, tomatoes, and black beans is great for weeknight dinner or meal prep!

INGREDIENTS

  • 14 ounces from 2 medium or 1 large zucchini, quartered and sliced 3/4 inch
  • 1 pound 93% lean ground turkey
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 3/4 cups corn kernels, fresh or frozen
  • 1 can diced tomato, drained 
  • 1 jalapeño, diced
  • 1 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon honey 
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup white wine or water
  • lime wedges, optional

INSTRUCTIONS

Spray a large skillet over high heat with oil and brown the turkey, season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon cumin.

Cook, breaking the meat up until the turkey is cooked through, about 5 minutes.

Push the meat to the side, add the onion and cook 1 minute.

Add the black beans, corn, tomato, jalapeño pepper, garlic, and stir with 1/4 cup wine/water.

Add the zucchini remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and cumin.

Mix and cover, cook low 4 to 5 minutes or until the zucchini is tender crisp.

Serve with lime wedges and more cilantro if desired.

Healthy, Recipes

Taco Cauliflower Skillet

Dinner in under 30 minutes!

This Taco Cauliflower Rice Skillet is quick, easy, healthy, low carb and incredibly delicious. Loaded with ground chicken, vegetables, cauliflower and melted cheese. 

INGREDIENTS 

  • 1 lb ground chicken 
  • 1 head cauliflower, riced 
  • 8 oz. mushrooms, sliced 
  • 1 red pepper, thinly sliced 
  • 1 yellow pepper, thinly sliced 
  • 1 tablespoon Garlic powder 
  • 1 packet Taco Seasoning 
  • ½ cup shredded cheese
  • Chopped cilantro 

INSTRUCTIONS 

Add the olive oil to a skillet over medium heat.

Sauté mushrooms until translucent. Then add in the peppers and garlic powder. Sauté until veggies are cooking through. Transfer to plate. 

Add the ground chicken to the skillet and cook while breaking up into small pieces until the chicken is cooked through. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

Add the cauliflower rice to the skillet with the cooked ground chicken. Stir to mix well. 

Bring to a simmer and then add the taco seasoning 

while stirring add ⅔ cup water. Simmer until the sauce is thickened, taste for seasonings. Add the cheese, stirring until melted. 

Serve with cilantro. 

Healthy, Recipes

Spicy Peanut Ground Chicken Stir Fry

Asian-inspired Stir Fry skillet, prepared in just one pan within minutes.

Enjoy this delicious meal to the fullest, because it’s keto friendly & low-carb plus perfect for meal prepping!

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1-3 tbsp red thai curry paste adjust to taste. 
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3 tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 bag Coleslaw
  • peanuts, garnish optional
  • cilantro, garnish optional

Instructions

In a large pan, heat the oil.

When the oil is hot, add the turkey and cook until it is about half way cooked. 

Add the curry paste, garlic, peanut butter, and soy sauce, and broth/water to the pan. 

Let it simmer and stir until the pork is fully cooked.

Add the slaw mix to the pan.

Cover and let simmer for 2-3 minutes until the veggies cook down to desired crunch level!

Remove from heat. 

Garnish with peanuts and cilantro.

Healthy, On the Side, Recipes

Grapefruit Salad with a Citrus Cilantro Dressing

This salad is perfect for summer!

It is refreshing and tart, with arugula, sliced red onions and creamy goat cheese, all topped with a citrusy cilantro dressing. It’s great as a side salad or add some protein to make it an entrée! It is especially delicious served alongside salmon!

INGREDIENTS 

For the dressing:

  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, packed, stems mostly removed
  • 1 medium-sized pink grapefruit, juiced
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ½  tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar

For the salad:

  • 4–5 cups arugula
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1 large pink grapefruit, sliced with skin on or peeled and split into wedges
  • 1/2 medium-sized red onion, peeled and sliced thinly

INSTRUCTIONS

Make the dressing:

Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend on high until well combined but bits of cilantro still remain.

Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Just shake or stir before adding to the salad.

Assemble the salad:

In a large bowl, add the arugula, goat cheese, grapefruit and onion. Add the desired amount of dressing and toss to combine.

Recipes, Seasonal

Orange & Honey Baked Ham

Sticky, sweet, tangy, and full of flavor… this orange & honey glazed ham is one that you’ll be happy to have as the star of your holiday meal or Sunday dinner!

Ham is perfect to serve for family holiday gatherings. There is not a lot of prep, it feeds a big crowd and it can be served warm or at room temperature.

Making a glazed ham is really simple, as the ham is already fully cooked, you’re just heating it up and adding a great glaze.  So don’t be intimidated here, I highly encourage you to give this recipe I try! 

Trust me when I say that you’ll be wanting this ham for MORE than just holidays or just Sundays!

Ingredients

Glaze 

  • 1/2 cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 4 tablespoons brandy
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/8 tsp. pumpkin spice 
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 2 orange sliced, thin 

Ham 

  • 1 bone-in spiral ham (approximately 8lb.)
  • 10 whole cloves 
  • 1 orange, sliced 

Instructions 

Preheat the oven to 325°. 

In a saucepan, whisk all the ingredients for the glaze. Heat on low, stirring occasionally until it is well combined and smooth. Remove the pot from the stove.

Place one whole clove throughout the ham just push the clove into the ham.

Place the oranges slices in between slices of ham. 

Place the ham in a large roasting pan and cover top of the ham with foil. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.

Every 20 minutes, remove the ham from the oven and brush all over with the glaze. 

After 1 hour and 15 minutes, remove foil from ham, brush with the glaze & cook for additional 25 minutes until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the ham registers 135°. 

Transfer the ham to a platter and tent with foil. 

Let rest for at least 15 minutes before slicing. 

Healthy, Recipes

Pan-fried Orange Glaze Grouper

For Christmas Eve this year my sister-n-law and I decided to do something a little different… 

In most Christmas comedy movies, the family ends up getting Chinese after the home cooked dinner goes wrong, so we decided let’s make our own Chinese dinner for Christmas Eve. 

This homemade Asian Orange sauce is so easy! Make a tasty, quick and healthy dinner ready in under an hour, that you can use over fish or chicken! 

This sauce has a delicious umami flavor and it’s full of ginger and garlic plus a little heat from the red chili paste. The best thing about making your own sauces and condiments is you can adjust the recipe to suit yourself. 

Serve this fish with my Garlicky Ginger Green beans and white rice. 

Ingredients

  • 6 -4 oz. portions Grouper or white filets
  • 6 Clove Garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Ginger
  • ½ teaspoon Red Chili Paste
  • ¼ cup Orange marmalade
  • 1 tablespoon Soy sauce, low sodium
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Rice wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon Sesame oil
  • Zest of one orange, for garnish
  • Green onions, for garnish

Cilantro, for garnish

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

In a saucepan over medium high heat add orange marmalade, sesame oil, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, rice vinegar and paste.  Stir until thoroughly combined and just beginning to boil. Set aside.

Add olive oil to an ovenproof frypan and turn to medium high heat.  As it warms, pepper both sides of the fish and add to the frypan.  Sauté fish 3-4 minutes until browned.  Flip filets over and spoon about a tablespoon of sauce over each filet. 

Place in the oven for 5-6 minutes until the fish flakes easily.

Spoon remaining sauce over baked portions.

Top with orange zest and cilantro.

Healthy, Recipes

Alfredo Squash & Zucchini No Noodle Lasagna

This delicious twist to a classic lasagna recipe will have your family and friends asking for more! It’s made with white Alfredo sauce, chicken, bacon, squash and zucchini slices. Layer it all together and bake for a creamy, cheesy and delicious low carb dinner.

Lasagna is one of my favorite comfort foods. It’s ideal for an easy homemade dinner since it uses simple ingredients (including store-bought Alfredo sauce), makes a lot, and is great for leftovers. This recipe is sure to be a favorite.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 pounds zucchini (about 3 large)
  • 1 1/2 pounds yellow summer squash (about 3 large)
  • 1 (15 ounce) container low-fat ricotta cheese
  • 1 jar Alfredo sauce
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning 
  • 1 teaspoon truffle olive oil, optional
  • ½ cup bacon, crumbles
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper 
  • 1 cup shredded chicken

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Grease a deep 9×13 inch baking pan.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese, ½ cup mozzarella, Italian seasoning, bacon crumbles, salt/pepper and truffle olive oil until well combined.

To assemble lasagna, spread 1/2 of the Alfredo  sauce into the bottom of the prepared pan.

Then layer 1/2 the squash &  zucchini slices, 1/2 the ricotta mixture, followed by 1/2 the mozzarella cheese and ¼ of the chicken. Repeat by layering the remaining Alfredo sauce, squash & zucchini slices, ricotta mixture, chicken and mozzarella. Spread Parmesan cheese evenly over the top; cover with foil.

Bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil; raise oven temperature to 350 degrees F and bake for an additional 15 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.