Autumn Greek Salad

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Lately, my biggest fear and greatest hope are the same thing.

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Is that the opening verse of a pop song or what??? Call me, T. Swift.

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It’s true, though. It’s like I’m so terrified of this thing happening, but I also I kind of desperately want it to………….

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So I live in a townhouse and share a wall with neighbors on the left and the right. They are fine folk, kind, agreeable, all that. I work from home so I spend a lot of time inside said townhouse. While I work or do house chores or just generally live, I have music playing. The genres vary depending on my rapidly changing moods. I can go from top 40 to indie to Broadway to Christian to folk to emo jams I used to have as my MySpace songs all in a day’s work. No matter the genre or my mood, I sing along. And I only have one volume. Can you guess what it is? Basically a deafening, blood curdling scream. You would think I would have more consideration for my neighbors, but nah. I’ve got the music in me, what can I do?? I have a sneaking suspicious my neighbors have all heard me at least 39458 times and they make fun of me to their friends. The thought brings me to my knees in terror, but also….do you think they think I’m good? Like, what if they tell their friends that their neighbor is maybe a professional singer and they send recordings of my performances to them to prove my talents??? That would be neat.

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Eventually, I’m going to find a strongly worded letter in my mailbox telling me to invest in a muzzle.

 

 

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 4-6 cups of arugula or mixed greens
  • 1 spaghetti squash, halved + deseeded
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled + deseeded + cut into cubes
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 english cucumber, sliced thin
  • 1/2 a red onion, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup of kalamata olives, halved
  • 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. of Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp. of agave
  • 1/3 cup of olive oil + 2 tbsp.
  • S+P, to taste
  • Pumpkin seeds, for serving

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Arrange spaghetti squash halves on a baking sheet + drizzle with 1 tbsp. of olive oil + some S+P, arrange cut side down
  • Line another baking sheet with foil + arrange butternut squash in an even layer + drizzle with 1 tbsp. of olive oil + S+P
  • Bake both for 40-45 minutes, tossing butternut squash once in the middle of cooking + checking on your spaghetti squash to make sure it’s not charring
  • Once cooled, pull out the spaghetti squash noodles
  • Meanwhile, combine apple cider vinegar + garlic + Dijon + agave + remaining olive oil + S+P
  • In a bowl, combine tomatoes + cucumber + onion + olives + 1-2 tbsp. of the apple cider vinaigrette, let marinate until ready to serve
  • To serve, arrange some greens on a plate + top with spaghetti squash + butternut squash + marinated veggies + pumpkin seeds + a lil more dressing
  • Hopscotch your fork from squash to squash, getting a lil bit of everything on your utensil, then slingshot it all into your pie hole, repeat until you are full or your wrist is exhausted from slingshotting

Pasta Fagioli

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I am not one to time my food posts with whatever made up national holiday it is like some of the *kewl* bloggers do.

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UNTIL TODAY, SUCKERS!!!! Take that, better bloggers!!!

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I mean, it was a complete accident, but apparently today is National Pasta Day.

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Like all of these fake holidays, I feel like the same ones come around 8 times a year. I’m not complaining. I try to celebrate things like tacos, cookies and pizza on the daily. I appreciate these excuses. But who started this? Like, who was the guy that was eating a nice seafood bisque one crisp autumn night and was like “Wow, yes, from now until the end of the time we, as a country, should celebrate seafood bisque on this day annually.” Seafood bisque day is 10/19, by the way. I was trying to think of what day I would create and immediately thought of the unsung hero of everyone’s favorite dish and also just the best vegetable there is – the onion. I Googled and SOMEONE ALREADY THOUGHT OF THIS, OF COURSE. At least my baby boos (onions) are getting their moment in the sun on June 27 of each year.

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Bless, there is even a day for the rutabaga, like when will this madness stop.

 

 

Time: 45 minutes (prep + cooking) | Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of pasta
  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • 1 can of cannellini beans
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled + chopped
  • 4 tbsp. of garlic
  • 28 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 container of vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup of fresh basil, chiffonaded
  • 1 tbsp. of crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp. of italian seasoning
  • S+P, to taste
  • 1 tbsp. of olive oil

How to:

  • Add oil to whatever brand of quick pressure cooker you have + set to saute
  • Add onion + S+P, cook 3-4 minutes
  • Add celery + carrot + S+P, cook another 3-4 minutes
  • Add garlic, cook another minute
  • Add in pasta + tomatoes + vegetable broth + beans + red pepper + italian seasoning + S+P
  • Close the lid + pressure cook on high for 4 minutes, let the steam release naturally for 5 minutes, then flip the lil switch + let the rest of the steam release
  • Stir in basil + more S+P to your tastes
  • Serve warm
  • To cook on the stovetop, just saute your veg in a skillet over medium heat, add all ingredients except pasta from the pasta step (boil your pasta separately) + cook for like 20 minutes, then add pasta + basil + serve!
  • Contort body into shape of favorite noodle + have sweetie gently pour pasta fagioli around your body + become one with the dish

 

Adapted from here!

Zucchini Sammies

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A place I thrive is our nation’s capital.

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I spent the long weekend gallivanting around one of my top 3 fave cities and I feel energized and refreshed!

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If only the U.S. Army 10-Miler didn’t get in the way of my itinerary!

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Obvio I did not run the race, I’m not a masochist, but I did do an exceptionally good job of spectating and just generally being uber supportive of my athletic husband. To make the race, we had to catch the metro bright and early. Catching the DC metro is one of my top 5 favorite activities so this was invigorating for me, though I would have preferred not to be wearing athleisure at the time, but I digress. We ride the escalator down to our platform & it is packed like a can of sardines (a saying I don’t love). Stranger’s bodies are just pressed too closely together, it’s terrible. We squeeze our way in and watch the escalator as more bodies arrive. Eventually the escalator is overwhelmed & people are stuck & there is some mild trampling. It was all very dramatic. The train finally came and people were squeezing in so tight the doors barely closed. If I hadn’t been trying to act like a local who was appalled by the throngs of people who didn’t know how to act riding public transit, I would have absolutely had a panic attack.

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I was rewarded for my positive attitude with copious amounts of falafel and an evening at a piano bar singing Elton John and swaying in a dimly lit corner.

 

 

Time: Overnight marinating + 1 hour cooking | Serves: 2-3

Ingredients:

  • 3 zucchini, halved lengthwise + pitted
  • 1 package of tempeh, cut in cubes
  • 1/2 cup of soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. of dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp. of lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. + 1 tsp. of garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp. of smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp. of chili powder
  • 1/2 lb. of shiitake mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp. of garlic powder
  • 1 tomato off the vine, sliced thin
  • 1/2 a red onion, sliced thin
  • 1 avocado, mashed
  • 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. of agave
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp. of olive oil
  • S+P, to taste

How to:

  • In a bowl, combine 1/4 cup of soy sauce + 1 tbsp. of lemon juice + 1 tbsp. of garlic + 1 tbsp. of smoked paprika + chile powder
  • Place zucchini halves in a big sealable bag + pour in soy sauce mix
  • Refrigerate overnight
  • In the morning, combine remaining soy sauce + dijon +  1 tbsp. of garlic in a lil bowl
  • Add tempeh + let marinate for a few
  • Meanwhile, combine mushrooms + garlic powder + remaining smoked paprika in a large bowl
  • Heat 1 tbsp. of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat
  • Add tempeh + cook for 6-7 minutes or until starting to crisp
  • Add mushrooms, cook another 4-5 minutes
  • Meanwhile, combine balsamic + agave + 1 tsp. of garlic + olive oil + S+P in a lil bowl’
  • To serve, spread some avocado inside one of each of the zucchini halves + top with S+P, top with tempeh/mushroom mix + tomatoes + onion + drizzle with balsamic + top with other zucchini half
  • Please try to pick up one of these bad boys + actually eat it like a sammie + see how much food you get all over your face