Baked Zucchini with Parsley and Oregano

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This felt like such a long week. Being my first full week back to work after vacation, I had a hard time getting myself moving. I was still on vacation time. The first few days I was back I couldn’t bring myself to cook, because I was just so tired. But with the week back to work, I also made a point to cook dinner every night. On Monday this week I made chicken and this baked zucchini for dinner.

There is so much zucchini at the farmers’ market right now, so I figured it would be a good be a good entry for this month’s AlphaBakes – the letter being Z! I know in some parts of the world, zucchinis have a different name: courgette. Courgette sounds so much fancier than zucchini.AlphaBakes Logo
The zucchini was so tender. The herbs I used were so mild, so the taste of the zucchini really shined through. It was also a really easy dish to make. I loved it! It’s perfect for my submission to this month’s Eat Your Greens.

eat your greens logo

Baked Zucchini with Parsley and Oregano

Ingredients
1 lb zucchini
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
2 tbsp oregano, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
6 tbsp olive oil

Directions

  1. Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise. Sprinkle salt on the cut side of the halves and place cut side down on a wood cutting board , allowing some of the liquid to drain away.
  2. Heat the oven to 350. Put the parsley, oregano, garlic, and breadcrumbs together in a bowl and mix together. Add half of the oil gradually and beat together with a fork. Season with pepper.
  3. Oil a baking dish and place the zucchini halves in it, cut side up. Spoon the herb mixture over the zucchini and drizzle 1 tbsp of the olive oil over the zucchini.
  4. Cover the dish in foil and bake for 30 minutes.
  5. Remove the foil and bake for 10 to 20 more minutes, until the zucchini is tender.
  6. Drizzle with the remaining olive oil.

* serves 4
* Besides Alphabakes and Eat Your Greens, this dish is also being shared with Weekend Cooking

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Chicken, Bacon, Artichoke Pasta with Creamy Garlic Sauce

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This month’s Pasta Please theme is GARLIC hosted over at The Spicy Pear. I love garlic. When a recipe calls for garlic, I most always double the amount of it I actually use in my dish because I love it. It helps that Matt loves it too, because that would make me sad.

To make a garlic pasta dish? YES PLEASE! I feel like garlic gives any dish (or okay, most dishes) a nice element. Please don’t put it in my chocolate cake though.

Anyway – I’ve been busy lately and haven’t been cooking too much due to interviews and work. This dish was easy to make after a Friday at work and tasted delicious. The sun-dried tomatoes definitely helped with that too.

pasta please

Chicken, Bacon, Artichoke Pasta with Creamy Garlic Sauce
(source)

Ingredients
12 oz noodles in any shape you want
6 slices bacon
1 lb chicken breasts, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
1 can quartered artichoke hearts, chopped
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp unsalted butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 tsp garlic powder

Directions

1. In a large pot of boiling water, cook the pasta. Once al dente, drain and set aside.

2. Cook the bacon in a large skillet. Once crispy remove to a plate covered in paper towels. Add the chicken to the bacon grease and season with salt and pepper. Cook until no longer pink. Saute artichokes and sun-dried tomatoes with the chicken for 4 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, melt the butter with the olive oil. Add garlic and then saute for 30 seconds. Sprinkle the flour on top and cook for 1 minute, whisking until smooth.  Slowly poor in the milk and chicken broth, whisking to avoid lumps. Season with salt and pepper and stir, cooking for 10 minutes, allowing the sauce to become bubbly and thick. Add the garlic powder and stir.

4. Cut the bacon into small pieces. Combine the pasta, bacon, chicken mixture, and sauce. Toss to combine.

* serves 6
* besides Pasta Please, this recipe is being shared with  Weekend Cooking

Pistachio Spinach Pesto

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This month at Pasta Please, Jen from Blue Kitchen Bakes hosted the pasta challenge of pesto. Each month a host provides a theme around pasta. Last month was peppers; this month’s was pesto. The pesto couldn’t have come at a better time, because I know you’ve all seen the pesto dishes I’ve been making lately (with different veggies and different nuts.) For this pesto dish I decided to use pistachios and spinach.

Matt’s been on a huge pistachio kick lately. We get flavored pistachios each week from the farmers’ market. This week we got onion-garlic and I figured that would pair well with my pesto.

I still have that cup of pesto in my refrigerator. Besides putting it on noodles, how do you suggest I use it?

pasta please

Pistachio Spinach Pasta

Ingredients
a bunch of spinach, washed and pressed in a paper towel to remove moisture
4 cloves garlic
2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shelled pistachios
1/2 cup olive oil
8 oz noodles, cooked

Directions

1. In a food processor pulse together the spinach, garlic, cheese, and pistachios. Pulse until a paste is formed.

2. Add the olive oil a little at a time, pulsing consistently. Continue until you have pesto consistency.

3. Serve over noodles.

* serves 4
* Besides Pasta Please this dish is being shared with Tasteful Tuesday Party, Recipe Box, Tasty Tuesdays, &  Tempt My Tummy

Sweet Potato Burger with Roasted Garlic Cream Sauce

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I don’t know what it’s been about this week (maybe the forced time change that I hate so much,) but I’ve just been exhausted. I have huge bags under my eyes and regardless of  getting my 8 hours of solid rest, I just can’t get past 4 o’clock in the afternoon without feeling like I’m just dragging. This wouldn’t be horrible if I didn’t have class that started at 6 p.m.

None of that has anything to do with these burgers though, except for the fact that I should have made them before class last night because I didn’t end up eating until 10 and oh my, I was hungry.

The roasted garlic cream sauce was so perfect with these burgers. I also really love sweet potato in general, so there’s that. The only thing is, I should have probably left out the white beans . . . because me and beans just don’t mesh well. I think the burger would have been just fine without the beans, but at the same time, if you don’t have the same . . . issues . . . with beans that I do, that’s not a problem anyway!

Sweet Potato Burger with Roasted Garlic Cream Sauce
(source)

Ingredients
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
1 bulb garlic
1/2 cup white beans
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tbsp bread crumbs
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
pinch ground cumin
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 avocado, sliced
1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/2 tsp maple syrup
2 hamburger buns

Directions

1. Cut 1/4-inch of the top of the garlic off the bulb, exposing the individual cloves. Place your garlic bulb in a baking dish. Cover with 1/2 tbsp olive oil. Place in an oven heated to 400 for about 30 minutes. Once cooked, remove and let cool until later.

2. Boil water in a large pot. Once the water is boiling, add the sweet potatoes. Cook for 20 minutes, or until soft.

3. In a large bowl, mash the beans with a fork. In a small dish mix the bread crumbs and flour with 2 tbsp of water. Mix the bread crumbs and flour with the beans.  Also add the sweet potatoes, minced garlic, paprika, onion powder, salt, pepper, and cumin into the bowl. Using a potato masher, mash everything together. Once everything is thoroughly mashed, mix together with a wooden spoon. Place in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes.

4. In a food processor squeeze out the cloves of your roasted garlic. Add the yogurt and maple syrup. Process until smooth and well combined. Set aside.

5. In a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, heat the remaining olive oil. Remove the sweet potato mixture from the refrigerator and form into patties. Place each patty into the cast iron skillet. Cook for about 5 minutes per side, or until crisp and brown.

6. Toast the buns. Once the buns are toasted, place a patty on each bun. Slather the yogurt sauce on the patty an top with avocado.

* serves 2
* shared with Foodie Friends Friday, Weekend Potluck, Foodie Friday, &  Foodie Friday

Mashed Potatoes and Sweet Potato

 

The reason there haven’t really been any recipe updates is because I wasn’t cooking for awhile. I sprained my ankle very badly about two and a half weeks ago and have been incapable of standing long enough to put dinner on the table. Because of this, I spent many nights laying on the couch directing Matt what to do from my immobile position.

The first meal I made after being able to stand long enough was pork chops and mashed potatoes. I was so happy with these mashed potatoes and it was more than just the fact that I could stand. Seriously, these are the best mashers I’ve ever tasted. I will make them again (and again and again and again.)

Mashed Potatoes and Sweet Potato
(source)

Ingredients
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
3 red potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/2 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
2 tbsp skim milk
1 tbsp unsalted butter
1/8 tsp dried rosemary
2 tbsp grated Parmesan

Directions

1. Preheat your oven to 350. Place the garlic in a small ovenproof dish and drizzle with olive oil. Roast for 30 minutes. Cool and peel.

2. While the garlic is roasting cook the potatoes and sweet potatoes in a large pot of water until tender, about 30 minutes.

3. Place the potatoes in a large bowl. Add the milk, butter, rosemary, and garlic. Mash until smooth. Mix in the cheese.

4. Transfer to a baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes.

* serves 3
* shared with Wednesday’s Whatsits & Cast Party Wednesday