Lately we’re reading or hearing a lot about spiral vegetable slicing, such as zucchini noodles using the SpiraLife or Spiralizer gadget. But don’t forget the spaghetti squash. It may not make perfect noodles–in fact, its flesh more closely resembles rice–yet it’s a good substitute for your favorite pasta.
Cooking spaghetti squash is easy, especially with a microwave oven. Using a sharp knife, puncture the skin in five or six places. Put the squash in a microwave-safe dish and cook on high for six minutes (Times vary depending on the model of your oven). Slice open, remove seeds and pulp, and then pull the flesh into “spaghetti” using a fruit spoon. Top and serve!
In this slideshow, I topped with scallops scampi and freshly grated Parmesan cheese. Spaghetti squash offers a delicious way to sneak a serving of vegetables into the meal no matter what toppings or sauce you use.
(No, no, no. This isn’t a post about passing around a marijuana joint. This is a food blog, remember? LOL)
When preparing your dinner, especially a large meal for entertaining, minimize your clean up by cooking foods with similar cooking times together. For instance, I often steam broccoli in the skillet with my salmon fillet.
The key is similar cooking time. You can control cooking time by the sizes of your food. For instance, a whole potato takes much longer to cook through than a diced potato.
Today I served green beans and carrots as my two sides. I prepped the green beans and placed them in the bottom of my pressure cooker pot, along with the recommended amount of water. Then I added my rack and basket. I keep my carrots above the liquid yet in the same pot. (I season each vegetable separately)
After bringing my pressure cooker to pressure, I timed for eight minutes, quick-released the pressure, and served. (Cooking time varies depending on your pressure cooker. Mine is 10 psi. Some are 15 psi.) If you don’t use a pressure cooker, you can still share the pot. Just triple your cooking time.
One pot to wash, two vegetables to serve.
via The Origins of the Mysterious Green Bean Casserole – Hungry History.
So will green bean casserole be on your Thanksgiving dinner menu?
If you aren’t a seafood eater, you may want to skip this post. Although I joke about the joys of eating bacon, the reality is seafood is my favorite “meat.” Love, love, love fish–and for good reason. It’s healthful. It’s tasty. And it takes only minutes to cook, making it the star of Hasty Tasty Meals recipes.
For example, we picked up fresh tilapia (farm raised in South America) at the seafood counter. In less time than it would’ve taken us to go to a restaurant and order, I had dinner on the table. My secret? Cook everything else first. Fish last. Fish cooks quickly and tastes best when not overcooked. Unlike poultry, pork, or beef, it doesn’t require a thermometer to determine when it’s safely cooked. It turns from pink to pale in minutes and you’re done!
For what I call “Bimini Style” fish, I slice sweet peppers and onion. I season the tilapia fillets with Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
I saute the peppers and onions in a preheated skillet (sprayed with Pam®) over medium/low heat.
After all my side dishes are underway (Today it’s fresh organic green beans and carrots in the pressure cooker for 9 minutes), I nestle the fish in with the peppers and onions. Low heat will cook the fish in minutes. Soon as I see the edges turn color, I carefully flip the fish using a long spatula.
By the time my sides cook, the fish is done, too. I serve with the peppers and onions piled on top. No fancy rubs or sauces needed. This is delicious food!
Don’t be intimidated by fish. Just follow these hints and you’ll be the star of your own seafood cooking show!