As I prepared this dish, killing time by playing Candy Crush (as I do), I had a revelation that not only makes me laugh even now, but immediately conjures up the image of my father-in-law handing out food saying “Esto no engorda” (This isn’t fattening). The last time this happened was this past Christmas when he was passing around homemade chicharron (crispy pork rinds) he made on the grill while he was preparing the Noche Buena (Christmas Eve) pig. The funny thing is, as rich as the crispy cracklings were, he was right.
But now, I have another Cuban recipe to add to that category, one that even he may not have realized is actually completely acceptable for Whole30 and those who follow the paleo and primal diets. It’s amazing how easy it is to find healthy recipes when the emphasis is simply on whole foods. (more…)
Learn how to make your own grass-fed beef tallow easily using your slow cooker!
A quick google search showed me that grass-fed beef tallow is selling at over $15, easily, for a 14-ounce jar. Perhaps it’s because tallow is loaded with healthy fats and oils, making it wonderful for cooking. Perhaps it’s because tallow is very versatile and can also be used to make emergency candles, soap, and a super nourishing body butter. Or perhaps it’s because places like Washingtonian Magazine call tallow one of the 15 hottest food trends of 2015. Whatever the reason, that’s a whole lot of dough to shell out for some fat, especially when you can render your own so easily. (more…)
This Meyer Lemon Green Beans recipe has been updated with new photos as part of the #ThrowbackThursday photography project. We enjoy this recipe so much as a quick, healthy side dish alternative to heavier green bean casseroles.
I distinctly remember the texture of cold cream of whatever soup in the green bean casserole that came with the Thanksgiving dinners my mom would order at the grocery store. I promise we warmed them, but there were always leftovers and I have a habit of testing dishes cold and deciding if I really like them partially based on their texture at the one temperature most dishes are not designed to be served. That particular green bean casserole just didn’t make the cut.
I’ve had great green bean casseroles since then, but they’re clearly not an every day dish. Usually loaded with butter and other fats, it’s just not something I really want to put on our family table more frequently than say, Thanksgiving. That meant that green beans were not frequent guests at our dinner table, and rather under appreciated by me until a few years ago. I really love the flavor of green beans, they’re delicious! A little sweet, crunchy, a bit earthy, it’s just nice, and a flavor that deserves to be complimented and celebrated. (more…)
Caramelized onions are one of my favorite condiments. They add such a rich flavor to a variety of dishes from soups to quiche and they just sound so nice. Would you like onion in your sandwich today? Maybe. Would you like caramelized onion with your sandwich today? But of course!
I feel like the only reason we don’t see more dishes featuring caramelized onions in home kitchens is that it takes about 40 minutes to properly caramelize onions. There’s no rushing the process, and no getting around the long cook time because that’s just how long it takes to break down sliced onion to release the natural sugars. The good thing about it is that at least one can make a big batch and then save it for later by freezing in portions with very little change in texture. Normally I don’t like frozen onions because the texture changes, but I haven’t noticed that much with caramelized onions. That being said, I also don’t often freeze them, preferring to keep a batch in my refrigerator for about a week and having it ready to use as I please.
Today I’m sharing with you the stove top method for making caramelized onions. You can also make them in the slow cooker overnight. I have made them successfully after about 12 hours in the slow cooker, but I prefer the stove top method. There is the tiniest difference in flavor and I feel the stove top method results in a slightly better final product.
How to Caramelize Onions
Author: Goodie Godmother
Recipe type: Condiment
- ⅓ c (215 g) good quality olive oil
- 1.5 lbs (690 g) sweet onion (approximately 2 large)
- 1 tsp (5 g) salt
- 1 tbsp (14 g) balsamic vinegar
- Slice the onions in half, then slice very thin as you heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
- Add the onions and sprinkle with the salt. Stir constantly until the liquid evaporates from the onions. You must stir so the onions don't steam in their own juices instead of caramelize. This takes about 15 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to a medium low, and cook an additional 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently, until the onions are a rich golden brown.
- When the onions are a rich golden brown (not burnt), remove them from the pan and increase the heat to high. Pour in your balsamic vinegar and swirl it around the pan, scraping the bottom to remove the little brown bits of onion that are stuck to the pan. Pour that over your onions. Mix to combine.
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Do you remember that scene in “Lady and the Tramp” when Lady and Tramp shared a plate of spaghetti and meatballs under the stars? Of course you do. I bet you even tried slurping your spaghetti at least once, much to your mother’s dismay, and thought about sharing one long spaghetti with a special someone. That doesn’t work by the way, the Godfather and I tried it and it’s really rather difficult.
Thankfully, spaghetti squash will spare you the embarrassment because while it does have a spaghetti-like appearance, there are no extra long strings of carb-laden pasta goodness. What you get instead is a very versatile, nutrient rich fruit (yes, it’s a fruit), that averages only about 40 calories per cup, and is an easy substitute in almost all spaghetti recipes if you are watching your carb intake, or just want a healthier option than traditional pasta. We have enjoyed it for years, prepared in all sorts of ways, but our favorite way to enjoy spaghetti squash is this – a simple preparation that allows the flavor of the squash to shine, accented with delicious meatballs made by the Godfather (usually beef or turkey, like today’s).
To prepare the spaghetti squash today, I baked it, but there are many other ways to prepare spaghetti squash including the slow cooker and the microwave, so please feel free to use your preferred method if you have one.
If you are allergic to nuts, you may substitute panko bread crumbs for the almond meal (it will not be Whole30 anymore), or 2 tbsp coconut flour. You may also omit it altogether, but your meatballs may end up a little more dense and dry since you must cook ground poultry to well done (160 F) for food safety reasons and it’s very very easy to accidentally over-cook. The nut meal/panko/coconut flour retains some of the moisture, making it more difficult to dry out the meatballs.
Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Meatballs Print
- 1 lbs medium spaghetti squash about 3
- 1/2 cup water or broth
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
- 2/3 cup diced tomatoes fresh or canned
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1/4 c almond meal (or 1/4 c panko bread crumbs or 2 tbsp coconut flour)
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp mild New Mexico chili powder
To prepare the squash:
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Carefully cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.
Place the squash in a baking dish, cut side down. Add the broth to the dish and bake, uncovered for 30 minutes or until the squash is easily pierced by a fork.
Remove from the oven, allow to cool until you can handle it and then scrape out the strings of "spaghetti" with a fork.
Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat, add the spaghetti squash, salt, and tomatoes and cook until warmed through.
Adjust salt to taste and serve warm, topped with fresh parsley.
Preheat your oven to 400 F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine all ingredients until well blended.
Shape meat into 1 1/2" balls (approximately the size of a golf ball) and place on the baking sheet. This recipe makes about 15 meatballs
Bake 15 minutes, until cooked through, and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.