November 19th, 2012 — 9:12am
We’re hosting Thanksgiving this year for the first time. It was decided just a few days ago and I’m so excited! (Here’s why Thanksgiving is one of my favourite holidays, even as a Brit.) I thought I’d share what we’re thinking of serving. Please share in the comments what you’re making – or looking forward to eating – so we can all be inspired and share ideas!
Cranberry sauce with orange zest and fresh nutmeg
Classic stuffing (though this cornbread sausage stuffing looks delicious)
Perfect roast potatoes
Mashed maple sweet potatoes
Green beans with almonds and thyme
Warm bread rolls
Chocolate pecan pie
P.S. My First Thanksgiving and other thanksgiving side dish ideas.
Top image by Katie Quinn Davies / What Katie Ate
Bottom image by Erin Jang / The Indigo Bunting
9 comments » | culture, food and culture, food experience, homemade, links, recipe
November 12th, 2012 — 8:37am
This dish is a weeknight dream. Cut a spaghetti squash in half and whack it in the oven. Scrape out it’s crazy spaghetti-like strands. Saute some sausage. Throw the lot together with a huge handful of freshly grated Parmesan and some herbs. Boom.
Certainly I encourage noone to think of spaghetti squash as a substitute for pasta – you’ll only find it disappointing if you do – rather, enjoy it for what it is and enjoy the fact that it’s more compatible with things like sausage and tomato sauce than any of its squash cousins.
And please forgive the propensity of weeknight iPhone pictures of late – I’d rather share a good recipe with you than not, just because the photos aren’t up to scratch. I hope you agree!
Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Sausage
from White on Rice Couple
- 1 spaghetti squash (3lbs or 1365g)
- 2 tbsp/ 30ml olive oil
- 5 or 6 medium shallots, thickly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3/4 lb/ 340g uncooked sausage (I used mild Italian sausage but any kind would work! If it’s in casing, be sure to remove it and separate into small balls before cooking.)
- 1 cup/ 60g coarsely grated Parmesan
- 1 tbsp finely chopped oregano
- Coarse salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 375F/190C. Grease a baking sheet with one tbsp olive oil.
- Slice spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and strands, then place cut side down on the prepared sheet pan.
- Bake for 45 minutes, or until the squash flesh separates easily into strands with a fork. Remove from the oven and finish loosening and removing the “spaghetti” from the squash shells and set aside.
- Heat a large pan over medium heat. Heat remaining olive oil in pan, then add shallots and garlic. Cook until soft, stirring every 30 seconds, then add sausage. Cook without stirring until the bottom side of the sausage starts to brown, then stir. Continue cooking and stirring occasionally until the sausage is cooked through, 2-3 minutes.
- Add spaghetti squash strands to the sausage and continue cooking until heated, less than a minute.
- Remove from heat. Toss in Parmesan and oregano. Season with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper. Serves 3-4.
6 comments » | homemade, recipe
November 8th, 2012 — 10:06am
Seasons are funny things food-wise. Every time summer rolls around I am beside myself with the opportunity and abundance and yet it’s the season during which I create the least in my kitchen. I just end up eating simply, trying to keep cool, and not wanting the bother of turning on the oven, or even a burner.
Then along comes autumn and seems to pull me out of any heat-induced funk, just like that. The spices of autumn are one thing: cinnamon, nutmeg, all-spice, and ginger all beg to be baked into something warm and comforting.
And then there is what I think of as the back bone of autumnal fare: the mighty squash in all its forms. Even though squash is a stubborn, heavy, awkward vegetable to prepare; even though peeling and slicing it feels much like trying to violently kill something with a blunt instrument; even though my hands turn yellow and dry after handling one: I find it wholly worth it.
In making this dish I discovered something heretofore unknown to me: you don’t have to peel butternut squash. (!) No, in fact leaving the skin on and simply scooping out the seeds and dicing it before roasting yields caramelised, chewy edges that add a welcome dimension to the texture of sometimes too-soft squash. It’s a revelation, friends.
I think we can all agree that this dish has Thanksgiving written all over it. It would be great as a side dish there, sure, but it’s also a very filling and satisfying dinner unto itself. I enjoyed it cold from the fridge, standing in my kitchen, fork and tupperware in hand, thick socks in full force. I recommend you do the same.
Butternut Squash with Pecans and Blue Cheese
from Nigella Lawson
- One butternut squash (about 2 kilograms)
- 1.5oz/ 45 ml olive oil
- ½ tsp dried thyme (or 6 stalks fresh thyme)
- 3.5oz/ 100 g pecans
- 4.4oz 125g blue cheese
- Preheat the oven to 425F/220C.
- Halve the squash, leaving the skin on, and scoop out the seeds, then cut into small cubes; you don’t need to be precise, just keep the pieces uniformly small.
- Put the squash into a roasting tin with the oil. Strip the leaves from 4 stalks of thyme, and sprinkle over the butternut squash. (If you can’t get fresh thyme, use dried.) Roast in the oven for about 30-45 minutes or until tender.
- Once out of the oven, remove the squash to a bowl and scatter the pecans and crumble the cheese over it, then toss everything together gently.
- Check seasoning and add the last of the thyme, torn into small sprigs to garnish. Serves 6-8 as a side dish.
2 comments » | recipe