Tuesday, April 27, 2010

No cooking and big decisions

I haven't been cooking anything noteworthy lately which is why I've not posted any recipes lately.  I have some exciting yet stressful things happening right now, which I will share when they are confirmed.  I've been so busy that I've had breakfast burritos the last 2 nights for supper, and I actually had to eat school lunch today because I had no leftovers to pack.  The lack of home cooked meals is starting to take its toll on me.  I find that I eat a lot more if I don't sit down to an actual meal.  It's a psychological thing I know, but I just don't feel satisfied if I don't have a full meal.  Right now I am craving a pizza, but it would take an hour to drive into town and back, and I don't have the items to make my own.  I will probably raid the pantry soon and see what I can come up with.  Tomorrow I will make a real meal.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Spicy asparagus pasta.

It's been awhile since I have posted, but I have a new recipe.  This is extremely simple, but tasty.  I plan on posting more about clothes, but because of my strict budget right now it's food, food, food.  Please note that most of my recipes are extremely flexible, feel free to add or subtract whatever you want.

On a side note, yes,  I use a lot of garlic, but if garlic is cooked slowly and added at the beginning of a dish it is a lot milder and sweet.  Give it a try.  My mother swears she hates garlic, but she happily eats my food.  Also, in the Spicy asparagus pasta the garlic is left whole, so it's easy to pick out.

This method is great, and I use it with a lot of different veggie combinations.  Right now my asparagus is going crazy, and I'm trying to keep up with it.

The first picture is of the asparagus and tomatoes, the second is the finished pasta.  The pasta picture isn't great, but it gives you an idea.

Spicy Asparagus Pasta

1 bunch asparagus cut into bit sized pieces
6 to 10 cloves garlic, peeled
4 Tablespoons olive oil
1 tomato chopped
2 teaspoons red pepper flakes (more or less depending on the amount of heat you like)
8 oz linguine
fresh Parmesan (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

Fill pot with water and boil for pasta.  Make sure to add salt to your water.  It should be as salty as the sea.  This is really the only chance you have to impart flavor to your pasta, so do it!  Add olive oil and garlic to skillet.  Heat on low.  Turn garlic with tongs every few minutes.  You want garlic to be a nice golden brown, but do not let it burn or it will become bitter.  This takes about 7 minutes.  After garlic is golden brown turn up heat to medium and add asparagus to garlic oil.  Add a few sprinkles of salt and pepper and the red pepper flakes. By this point your pasta water should be ready.  Follow instructions for cooking pasta.  Do not overcook pasta.   Cook asparagus until tender about 3 to 5 minutes while the pasta is cooking.  Add tomatoes to asparagus.  Cook down another 2 minutes.  Drain pasta and toss in garlic, oil, and asparagus.  Serve immediately.  If you want to add cheese now would be the time.  This is so delicious I don't think the cheese is needed.

Sunday, April 11, 2010


I've been feeling drained and overwhelmed lately.  A lot of that might have to do with the fact I've been out of town during the past 3 weekends and I have 2 more busy weekends coming up.  My job demands that I do a lot of work after work, and I just haven't been motivated.  When I came home tonight from yet another busy weekend I sat outside on my porch and just looked around.  It was beautiful.  My garden was freshly tilled by my parents this weekend, my asparagus and rhubarb are growing, and my trees are blooming.  My house is a disaster, and I am far behind at work, but I did get my herbs planted tonight.  I will get caught up.  Spring is a time a renewal, and I need to be renewed.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Just a quick post about the asparagus in my garden.  I checked yesterday and nothing had come up yet.  This morning I have a bucket full.  I will be eating asparagus every day for weeks soon because it produces so much. I love this time of year.  My rhubarb will be up soon.  Now, what should I make?

Monday, April 5, 2010

Quick Spaghetti Squash and Tomato Sauce

Last week between work and work I had about 2 hours, and I wanted something homemade.  I had baked a spaghetti squash a few days before, so the lovely pasta like insides were waiting for me in the refrigerator.  I tossed together a quick tomato sauce and enjoyed.  The whole thing came together in less than 15 minutes.

 For those of you who have never baked a spaghetti squash (you should), all I did was poke a few holes in the squash with a knife and then stuck it in the oven at 350 degrees for one hour.  After an hour I turned the oven off, but left the squash in for another hour.  Then I took the squash out of the oven, cut it in half, and used a fork to scoop out the insides.  I put the "pasta" in plastic containers and kept it in the refrigerator until I was ready to use it.   Spaghetti squash is a great pasta alternative.  It makes me feel like I'm doing something a little healthy.  I plan on growing these squash in the garden this year, so I'll be having lots of healthy "pasta."

Quick Tomato Sauce and Spaghetti Squash

1 Tablespoon Olive oil
1 onion chopped
1 red bell pepper chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
30 oz can crushed tomatoes (use chopped or whole tomatoes for a chunkier sauce.  I use whatever is on hand)
15 oz can artichoke hearts drained and roughly chopped

Heat olive oil in large pan.  Sauté onions, red bell pepper, and garlic for 3 to 5 minutes until onions and and peppers are soft.  Add red pepper flakes and stir in veggies and oil.  Add tomato sauce and cook until sauce is warmed through.  Add artichoke hearts (you could add olives here if you want as well).  Toss in spaghetti squash.  Heat through and serve.