Thursday, December 31, 2015

Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagna

Happy New Year's Eve! What a year it has been for us - moving to a new state, starting a new career, starting new schools, making new friends, and finding a new community. It has not been easy, but it has been fun. We look forward to many new memories in 2016! I hope you have a wonderful year!

I hope to find more time to update my blog this year and hope to share a link to purchase my sweet husband's Christmas gift to me - my blog as a published cookbook! I was so surprised and touched he compiled a majority of the recipes on my blog and made a pretty cool cookbook out of it. I'm a book!

I'm a book!

This is a hearty meal that tastes delicious. If you want to add meat, I would recommend some ground turkey or chicken, but it still tastes great without meat! My kids even enjoyed this lasagna. But we did have regular meat and red sauce lasagna a few days later and they seemed to enjoy that a tad bit more - kids!

Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagna


Butternut Squash Filling:
- 2 cups butternut squash, boiled in a pot of water for 14 minutes or until soft
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. nutmeg

Spinach Filling
- 8 oz. steamed spinach
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- pepper to taste

- 9 lasagna noodles, cooked
- 1 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- Italian seasoning
- Paprika
- Basil

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray your 8" x 11.5" baking dish with non-stick spray.
2. Mix your soft butternut squash, ricotta cheese, milk, salt and nutmeg in your blender to make a puree. Set aside.
3. In a medium bowl, mix your spinach, mozzarella cheese, ricotta cheese, garlic, salt and pepper together and set aside.
4. Bring a pot of water to boil and cook your lasagna noodles according to directions on package.
5. To assemble the lasagna spread 1/3 of the butternut squash filling on the bottom of your dish, sprinkle lightly with mozzarella cheese, place 3 x noodles on top and half of the spinach filling on top of the noodles. Top lightly with more mozzarella cheese and 3 x more noodles.
6. Spread 1/3 of the butternut squash filling on top of the noodles, sprinkle some mozzarella cheese and spread the rest of the spinach filling on top. Sprinkle it with some mozzarella cheese.
7. Top with 3 x more noodles and spread the remaining butternut squash filling on top.
8. Sprinkle lasagna with Italian seasoning, paprika, basil and parmesan cheese.
9. Cover lasagna with foil and bake for 35 minutes.

 Spinach Filling

 Butternut Squash filling  before pureed

 Pureed Butternut Squash Filling

 1/3 butternut squash filling on bottom of dish sprinkled with mozzarella cheese

 Noodles and spinach filling on top

 Completed Lasagna prior to being baked

Butternut Squash and Spinach Lasagna


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Banana-Berry Baked Oatmeal

I was looking for a something different to try out for breakfast that my kids would eat - and Bakerella sent me an email for this "Banana-Berry Baked Oatmeal." Super easy to throw together and bake beforehand. I just cut slices up the next day and re-heated them in the microwave. My kids loved it! I also used Craisins instead of real cranberries. Perfect breakfast for a cold winter morning (or 60 degrees here in Philly...)

Banana-Berry Baked Oatmeal

- 2 cups Quaker Old Fashioned Oats
- 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 egg
- 2 cups milk
- 2 tsp. vanilla
- 2 tbsp. maple syrup
- 2 tbsp. melted butter
- 1 cup cranberries, I used Craisins
- 1 large banana, sliced

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8"x8" dish.
2. In a bowl mix oats, brown sugar, pecans, cinnamon, salt and baking powder and pour into dish.
3. Using same bowl, whisk egg, vanilla, milk, and maple syrup together. Add melted butter, mix and set bowl aside.
4. Place cranberries and banana slices in dish and toss to distribute.
5. Pour milk mixture gently over your oats.
6. Bake 35-40 minutes. Serve with a drizzle of maple syrup.

 Dry Ingredients

 Milk Mixture

 Cranberries and Banana added

 Milk mixture added

Banana-Berry Baked Oatmeal


Friday, December 4, 2015

Butternut Squash Pasta

It's getting colder outside these days, so why not make something hearty and warm? This pasta sauce is surprisingly delicious and will leave you wanting seconds! I bought a container of already diced butternut squash at Wegman's - which made prep for this meal even easier!

Butternut Squash Pasta

- 1 butternut squash, diced and peeled
- 12 oz. linguine
- 3 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 1/2 cup vege oil
- sage or rosemary
- 1/4 cup diced onion
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- salt and pepper

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add your squash and some salt to it. Let cook 12-15 minutes.
2. Fry your sage leaves with some olive oil. Or you can just add rosemary to your sauce as it simmers, it smells so good!
3. Using a slotted spoon, take your squash out of the hot water and place in a separate bowl.
4. Add pasta to the water the butternut squash was in and cook according to package.
5. Using a blender, puree your butternut squash until smooth. Add vege broth until sauce reaches your desired consistency.
6. In a deep skillet, add your olive oil and sautee your onions and garlic until flavorful. Add your pureed butternut squash and stir in your parmesan cheese.
7. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper.
8. Add pasta to your sauce and stir to coat. Add your sage or rosemary and serve hot.

Butternut Squash sauce with pasta added

Butternut Squash Pasta with rosemary