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Entries in Meatless March (18)


Greek Pasta Salad

While reading some blog posts, I followed some links and ended up on Gonna Want Seconds.  When I saw this recipe, I knew I had to have it.  I put it on the menu plan for last week, but it got pushed back.  Since this past week was a busier week than most for me at work, I thought that this would be a perfect, quick meal to make when I got home.  It was fine for dinner, but I honestly thought it tasted better the next day for lunch after all the flavors had enough time to meld!

1 pound Farfalle Pasta
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Red Onion, diced
6 Garlic Cloves, roughly chopped
1 (13.75 ounce) can Artichoke Hearts, drained
2 (14.5 ounce) cans Petite Diced Tomatoes
6 ounces Tomato Paste
6 ounces Water
1 tablespoon Dried Oregano
4 ounces Kalamata Olives, pitted
2 teaspoons Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper
1/4 teaspoon Sugar
1 cup Feta, crumbled

Cook pasta according to package directions, then drain.  Meanwhile, add the olive oil to a large skillet.  Saute onion and garlic until they are soft.  Add the artichokes, tomatoes, tomato paste, water, oregano, olives, salt, pepper, and sugar.  Cook for 10 minutes.  Add the cooked and drained pasta to the sauce and toss to coat.  Sprinkle each portion with feta and serve.


Baked Seasoned Fries with Skinny Garlic Aioli

Growing up, it wasn't uncommon to have a side of fries or tater tots with our meals-always of the frozen variety.  Since I've moved out, I haven't purchased a bag of frozen fries, and I'm OK with that.  I'd much rather make things from scratch.  So, when we decided that we were having "burgers" this week, my first thought for a side dish was fries, but this time, homemade.  I found a recipe for these fries from Gina's Skinny Recipes.  The mix of flavors from the spice blend that coats the fries is absolutely delicious, as is the super simple dipping sauce.

2 medium Potatoes, washed and dried (I used russet)
2 teaspoons Olive Oil
1 tablespoon Herbs de Provence (I used a combination of rosemary, thyme, and marjoram)
1/4 teaspoon Oregano
1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
1/4 teaspoon Chili Powder
1/4 teaspoon Onion Powder
1/4 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/4 teaspoon Fresh Cracked Black Pepper
Fresh Lime Zest

Cut each potato lengthwise into 1/4 inch slices.  Then, cut each slice into 1/4 inch fries.  In a large bowl, combine the cut potatoes and oil, and toss well.  Add the rest of the ingredients and toss to coat.  Place the fries in a single layer on a lightly greased baking sheet.  Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees, for about 25 minutes, or until tender crisp, turning once half way through cooking.

For the Garlic Aioli
2 tablespoons Light Mayonnaise (I used safflower oil mayonnaise)
2 tablespoons Fat Free Greek Yogurt
1 Garlic Clove, crushed

Mix the three ingredients in a bowl and serve with fries.


Black Bean and Mushroom Burgers

Yet again, as I was flipping through my saved recipes, I found this one from quite a while ago on Brown Eyed Baker (adapted from Culinary in the Country).  Theses burgers sounded absolutely delicious, especially along side of the fries I was already planning on making.  On Monday, I had a longer than normal day at work, and when I got home I was absolutely starving.  Once I started putting everything together for dinner, these burgers came together very quickly.  They were especially tasty topped with a little salsa and sour cream.

1 tablespoon Canola Oil, plus more for brushing
1 cup Onion, finely chopped
8 ounces Cremini Mushrooms, finely chopped
1 Garlic Clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon Cumin
1/2 teaspoon Smoked Paprika
4 slices Whole Wheat Sandwich Bread, lightly toasted (I used 4 ounces total-half panko, half bread)
1 (15 ounce) can Black Beans, rinsed and drained
2 ounces Cheddar Cheese, shredded
Salt & Pepper, to taste
4 Buns (I used Sandwich Thins)
Salsa & Sour Cream, for serving (optional)

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to turn golden brown, about 4 minutes.  Stir in the mushrooms, garlic, cumin, and paprika and cook until the mushrooms have released their moisture, about 4-6 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.  Meanwhile, tear toasted bread pieces and place in the food processor.  Process until bread crumbs are formed.  Place them in a large bowl and set aside.  Add the mushroom mixture and beans to the food processor and pulse until combined, leaving some chunky bits.  Scoop the mixture into the bowl with the bread crumbs.  Add the cheese, salt, and pepper, mix all ingredients until well combined.  Divide the mixture into 4 equal portions and form into patties.  Lightly brush each side of the patties with canola oil.  Heat a grill pan or skillet over medium heat.  Place the patties on the surface and cook until completely heated through and the outside has crisped, about 5 minutes per side.  Serve burgers on toasted buns and top with salsa and sour cream, if desired.


Spinoccoli Pizza

We like to make our own pizza from time to time.  In fact, I can't actually remember the last time we ordered one from a pizzeria.  When we do make our own, we never make a traditional cheese and pepperoni pizza.  Instead, we like to get creative and try new things you wouldn't normally find on a take out menu.  I was looking around and found this recipe from Pink Parsley (originally Annie's Eats) and decided it was the one we were going to make.  We had a pizza dough in the freezer that we needed to use up, too.  This pizza took very little time and was absolutely delicious!

1 Pizza Dough (I used this one)
1 tablespoon Butter
1 tablespoon Flour
3/4 cup Milk
1 Garlic Cloves, smashed
Salt & Pepper, to taste
6 tablespoons Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 cup Broccoli Florets, chopped into 1-2 inch pieces
1 cup Fresh Spinach, packed
2/3 cup Mozzarella Cheese, shredded
2/3 cup Cheddar Cheese, shredded

**Preheat the oven to 500 degrees for at least 30 minutes, with a pizza stone.  (I did not do this.  Instead, we just oiled a cookie sheet and stretched our dough on that to make the pizza.)

To make the white sauce, melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Add the flour, and cook, whisking constantly, until golden and bubbly, about 1 minute.  Whisk in the milk and add the garlic cloves.  Cook, stirring often, until the mixture thickens and bubbles.  Remove from heat, season with salt and pepper, and stir in the Parmesan cheese.  Remove and discard the garlic.  (I didn't read this part and added minced garlic instead, so it did not get removed.  Oh well!)

Roll the pizza dough into a 12-14 inch round.  (As stated above, I opted to go with a rectangular pizza and did not use my pizza stone).  Brush the perimeter with olive oil.  Spread a thin layer of the white sauce over the surface and top with the spinach and broccoli.  Scatter the cheeses over the vegetables.  If using a pizza stone, transfer the pizza to the stone and bake for 12 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.  Allow to cool slightly before cutting and serving.


Homemade Naan

I know I already have a naan recipe in my archives, and just because I'm trying out a new one doesn't mean that the old one isn't absolutely delicious.  The first recipe I tried was on the sweet side, almost like a fried dough in a way.  Joel wanted me to make one that was less sweet, so when I found this one on Pioneer Woman's Tasty Kitchen, I thought it would be worth a try.

2 cups Flour
3/4 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Sugar
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/2 cup Warm Milk
1/2 cup Yogurt
1/2 tablespoon Oil, as needed
Melted Butter, if desired

In a large bowl, mix all of the dry ingredients together.  Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients . In another bowl, mix the milk and yogurt.  Pour half of the wet mixture into the well and slowly combine it together.  Slowly continue to add the liquid, mixing well to form a soft dough.  Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and let it sit in a warm place for at least 2 hours.  When the dough has rested, turn it out onto a well floured surface.  Knead the dough for 2-3 minutes.  Divide the dough into about 8 small balls.  Flatten the balls to make an elongated piece of bread.  You can sprinkle one side of the dough disk with any flavorings at this point if you would like a flavored naan.  Brush one side with water.  heat a heavy bottomed pan over medium heat.  Once it is nicely hot, place the naan wet side down and cover it with a lid.  Let it cook for about 30 seconds, or until you see bubbles.  Using tongs,remove the naan from the pan and cook the other side over direct flame on the burner.  When you see charred brown spots, the naan is done cooking.  Brush the grilled naan with melted butter, if desired.