Acorn squash with a gluten-free twist!

Monica and Daria say:

If any of you are regulars on Facebook, you may have seen a post for a delicious way to make acorn squash.

The stuffing looked amazing and had sausage and lots of gooey cheese in it.

While we are sure that it tasted as good as it looked, we decided to make a vegetarian and

gluten-free (of course) stuffing for our acorn squash.

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After washing and removing the seeds from our squashes, we roasted them with a little olive oil and pumpkin pie spices.

What an aroma! The whole kitchen was happy!

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While the squash was roasting, we chose our ingredients for the stuffing.

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What would be a better base for a stuffing than some yummy quinoa?

Yes, quinoa it would be!

And what delectable food ingredients can we add to the base?

How about our favorite Honeycrisp apples for crunch…

some scallions for savory flavor…

fresh parsley to make it vibrant…

chopped walnuts for extra protein…

dried cranberries for a wee bit of sweetness…

and lemon zest to pump it up!

 

Here is the step-by-step recipe for you!

Acorn Squash with Quinoa Stuffing

Ingredients:

2 acorn squashes

Olive oil

Pumpkin pie spice

1 cup quinoa

1 Honeycrisp apple, chopped

2-3 scallions, diced

Handful of fresh parsley, chopped

Handful of chopped walnuts

Handful of dried cranberries

1 whole lemon, plus zest

2 T sunflower oil

Salt and pepper

 

Directions:

Cut 2 acorn squashes in half; remove seeds.

Drizzle each piece with olive oil.

Sprinkle with pumpkin pie spice.

Bake in a 400 degree oven for 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook quinoa according to package directions. Place one cup dry quinoa into 2 cups of water, bring to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes.

While quinoa is cooking, chop the Honeycrisp apple into bite-size pieces. Dice scallions and chop fresh parsley. Chop a handful of walnuts. Set aside in a bowl.

Now add a handful of dried cranberries to the bowl.

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When quinoa is done, remove from the pot and spread on a cookie sheet to cool slightly.

Make the dressing with the juice of one whole lemon, add some zest from the lemon and combine with sunflower oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Now assemble the dish by placing squash onto each plate and fill the cavity of each squash half with the quinoa stuffing.

whisks     © 2015, Monica & Daria of glutenfreedoubletalk

 

Note:   We started out with three acorn squashes and when we cut into them, we ended up with only two! Make sure you look at them carefully when purchasing them!

 

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You will have more stuffing than you need but guess what?

It’s a great lunch for tomorrow, without the squash!

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This dinner was not very labor intensive and it was delightful!

Enjoy as much squash as you can while it’s at its best!

Happy roasting!

© 2015, Monica & Daria of glutenfreedoubletalk

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Happy 239th birthday, America!

Monica and Daria say:

It’s Independence Day!

Yay for America!

We attended a family get-together yesterday and were so happy with the results of our red, white, and blue fruit salad!

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Several guests at the party asked “Who made the quinoa salad? It’s so delicious!” And many thanked us for bringing such a nutritious addition to the picnic!

We certainly can’t take all of the credit, though. We found the recipe through Pinterest!

Make the quinoa (takes a mere 15 minutes); cut up your strawberries, prepare raspberries, blackberries, blueberries; chop some fresh mint and basil; and prepare the citrus dressing!

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The only thing that we did differently was to use fresh slivered almonds that we toasted with some cinnamon, rather than the Blue Diamond Honey Roasted Cinnamon Almonds, used by two peas.

The dressing is what really pulls the whole salad together! It’s just bursting with citrus flavor! What a delight!

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And regarding the dressing, we used Raw Unfiltered Honey. And of course, we doubled the recipe just knowing that it would be a hit!

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So many thanks to two peas & their pod for posting the recipe for this salad! Your pictures are amazing, too!

We were so busy tasting this salad that we only took a few pics!

For more Fourth of July recipes see our previous Happy Birthday, America! post  and Our salads were a hit! from 2014!

So enjoy our country’s birthday celebration!

Long may our proud American flag fly!

© 2015, Monica & Daria of glutenfreedoubletalk

February Foods We LOVE! Quinoa!

Monica says:

Several years ago if you would have asked me what quinoa was, I would have had the “deer in headlights” look on my face!

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is probably the most perfect plant protein that can be found!

Naturally gluten-free and wheat-free, this is THE perfect food for those of us who suffer from celiac disease or have gluten-sensitivity.

Nutrient-rich, quinoa has anti-inflammatory properties, contains all of the essential amino acids, and is a great source of manganese (migraine sufferers often are lacking this)!

Fast forward to now…

I am comfortable cooking quinoa and anyone who knows me, will tell you that I LOVE to collect recipes and will try any recipe at least once. That being said, I discovered this amazing breakfast quinoa.

Being a “Martha Stewart Wanna-be” (as far as crafts and recipes go), I learned that she has a video series called Eat Clean with Shira Bocar, the Martha Stewart Living food editor.

The recipes in this series are simple and nutritious.

Here is a link to my new favorite quinoa recipe, called Quinoa Porridge!

http://www.marthastewart.com/1072187/eat-clean#1100582

I wrote down the recipe as Shira spoke on the video, so here it is!

Quinoa Porridge

First:

½ cup rinsed quinoa (rinse through 3 changes of water)

¾ cup almond milk (I used Silk Vanilla Almond Milk)

½ cup water

½ tsp vanilla

¼ tsp cardamom

¼ tsp sea salt

Swirl ingredients and then bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer and cover for 16 minutes.

When done, fluff with fork and set aside.

Now:

Chop half of a pear into bite-size chunks. Grab a handful of toasted sliced almonds.

(I toasted sliced almonds on parchment paper in a 350˚ oven for about 5 minutes….as soon as they are fragrant, remove from oven)

Assemble the porridge by placing quinoa in the bottom of a bowl. Add some almond milk, place chopped pear on top and garnish with toasted almonds.

©marthastewart.com/eatclean

So let’s recap….

Quinoa can be eaten for breakfast!

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Quinoa is a seed, not a grain!

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Quinoa will keep your tummy happy!

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Let’s dig in…

Enjoy!

© 2015, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

Did you ever try Scallops Scampi?

Monica says:

I cook almost every night. I guess you could say it’s just a part of my day.

When our girls were little we always tried to sit down and eat dinner together if our schedules allowed it. It was the best time of the day….and even though our girls are all grown up and on their own, we still love sitting down to dinner.

Most people have eaten shrimp scampi, but how about scallops scampi?

No, I hadn’t ever heard of it either.

Until….

I was helping my sister Maria clean out her house since she and her hubby were moving. Since I am a recipe addict, I spotted some torn out recipes from magazines and voila!

Scallops Scampi!

The original recipe (from Good Housekeeping) called for a bed of couscous and of course, since we can’t have couscous, I substituted quinoa.

It was easy and so delicious! See for yourself!

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Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients

1 c quinoa

1 ¼ lbs. sea scallops

1 lemon

I clove garlic, crushed

4 zucchini (8 oz. each)

1 T butter

2 T chopped fresh chives

salt and pepper

Preparation

Prepare quinoa according to package.

Rinse and pat scallops to dry.

Grate 1 tsp of zest from lemon and then squeeze 2 T of juice.

In a bowl, toss scallops with garlic, lemon zest, ¼ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp pepper.

Make the zucchini ribbons by taking a vegetable peeler and slicing each zucchini lengthwise into long pieces until you reach the seeds and core. Discard the cores. Set ribbons aside for later.

In a non-stick skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Place the scallops into the pan and cook 5-6 minutes on each side. Make sure you only turn them over once! When they are done, remove them and place on a plate.

Add the zucchini to the skillet. Reduce the heat and cook with a lid on for 2 minutes making sure you stir the ribbons at least once. Uncover and cook an additional minute or until tender and crisp. Remove zucchini from heat; stir in lemon zest and juice.

Spoon quinoa onto each plate and then top with zucchini ribbons. Place several scallops on top and sprinkle with fresh chives.

What a great dinner!

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Now all we need is to have our girls at the dinner table with us!

But as Bjarne Reuter said, “Children have the unforgivable habit of growing up.”

© 2014, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk

I love zucchini!

Monica says:

I happened to come across a Martha Stewart video featuring quinoa and of course, I had to watch it! So happy I did!

It features not only quinoa, but also zucchini, which is so abundant right now and did I tell you?

I. Love. Zucchini.

So take a quick look and see what  you think!

Zucchini and Quinoa Salad….did I say delicious?

The one thing that I did differently was to base my salad on 2 servings, since I had this little delight in my cupboard!

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 And did you notice something in the upper right-hand corner??

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Cooks in 8 minutes!! Yes, that will help! Thanks, Keen One Quinoa!

So I did everything that the host did except for toasting the pistachios….I just chopped mine after shelling them.

Amazing!

Packed with protein and full of flavor, this salad is definitely going in my “Favorites” file!

Just feast your eyes upon this…

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Thanks, Shira Bocar and Eat Clean videos!

 

© 2014, Monica of glutenfreedoubletalk