Make-Ahead Roasted Butternut Squash Casserole

originally from: http://ohsheglows.com/2017/10/27/make-ahead-roasted-butternut-squash-casserole/

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I posted this story and make-ahead technique to my Instagram account recently, only to be cut off part-way through when I exceeded the word limit. As Stephanie Tanner would say: How rude, lol. Did you even know that Instagram has a word limit? I guess it wasn’t designed for Chatty Cathy’s like me. That’s when it hit me: I should post this on the blog so I can go a bit more in-depth! So read on, my friends….

The other weekend I decided it had been way too long since I had made my beloved roasted butternut squash dish, complete with vegan parmesan…kale…and lots of garlic. Have you made it? Oh my, it’s a show-stealing side I tell ya. (This dish makes all its other dinner companions give the side-eye, heh. #BUTTERNUTPLEASE!)

Here’s a little summary of comments I received when I served it to the fam:

Eric: *Burns mouth.* “Holy sh*t, that’s hot!!!” (He never learns.) Then: “Butternut squash is so much better than pumpkin.” (Lol…so random…I die.)

Adriana, three years old: “NO THANK YOUUUUUUU” (as she skips away with Arlo’s favourite toy in her grasp). Spotted 10 minutes earlier: downing a box of “circle crackers” (sigh).

Arlo, one year old: *Screams and beats his hands in protest because he has to wait for the squash to cool* then proceeds to inhale it. He was nice enough to smash the leftover squash into his hair, and even tossed some over his shoulder for good luck.

Me: *Scream and beat my hands in protest because I have to wait for it to cool* then enjoys two big servings.

You know the saying…as far as anyone knows, we’re a nice, normal family. Bahaha.

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MAKE IT AHEAD!

You may have noticed lately that I’ve been on a crusade to create as many time-saving recipes and make-ahead tips as I can. In recent posts, I shared Adriana’s Favourite 10-Minute Pasta, 8-Minute Pantry Dal, and Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Panzanella, to name a few. Last week, I came up with a make-ahead version for one of my favourite side dishes: Roasted Butternut Squash with Pecan Parmesan and Kale! I’m so excited to share how I tweaked the original recipe to minimize day-of prep time. Now that we’re getting into all kinds of holiday celebration meals, my goal is to share as many time-saving tricks with you as I can. It’s making life much less hectic in the Liddon household.

I discovered that this dish can be prepped and stored in the fridge two to three days in advance—and no one will be the wiser! This is a fun trick for holiday meal prep when sanity reaches an all-time low (or is that just me?).

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Here’s what you do:

1) Combine the chopped squash, minced garlic, parsley (not shown in the photo!), oil, and salt in an extra-large casserole dish. Pro tip: if I’m really short on time, I’ll occasionally buy fresh pre-chopped squash to save the hassle of peeling and dicing a large one! Sometimes you just gotta live your best life, ya know?

2) Stem and chop the kale, then place it into a zip bag or container.

3) Make the vegan parmesan, and place that into a separate fridge-friendly container.

PREP WORK DONEZO.

When you’re ready to roast this beauty either later that day or as many as two to three days later, proceed with the recipe as usual…maybe while giving an evil cackle about how you outsmarted the original instructions. I won’t mind.

One thing’s for sure, I’ll be using this trick for all of my future holiday meals, and even busy weeknights! It’s so handy to have everything prepped and ready to go. I hope this tip helps streamline your own holiday meal planning as well. If you’re looking for more crunch-time holiday inspiration, don’t forget to check out my Make-Ahead Thanksgiving Panzanella recipe—it has had some great feedback so far. Oh, and let me know in the comments if you have any make-ahead recipe requests! I’d love to hear them.

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Make-Ahead Roasted Butternut Squash Casserole
Vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free

This is a handy make-ahead version of one of my all-time favourite fall and winter side dishes showcasing the best of cold weather produce. See my tips below on how you can prep the casserole ingredients a couple days beforehand, so they’re ready to come together effortlessly at meal-time (just be sure to leave yourself about an hour to cook it, though). Sometimes, when I’m feeling wild, I like to double the vegan parmesan because it’s just so good! This recipe is adapted from the original in 2012—back when I had a little more time in the kitchen, pre-kiddos!

Yield
6 side servings

Prep Time
20 Minutes

Cook time
55 Minutes

Total Time
1 Hour, 15 Minutes

Ingredients:
For the roasted squash:1 medium/large (2 to 2 1/2 pounds) butternut squash2 large cloves garlic, minced3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley1 tablespoon (15 mL) extra-virgin olive oil1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt2 cups (75 g) stemmed and finely chopped kale*For the Almond-Pepita Parmesan:1/4 cup (40 g) whole almonds**1/4 cup (40 g) roasted pepita seeds**1 tablespoon (15 mL) nutritional yeast1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt1 teaspoon (5 mL) extra-virgin olive oil

Directions:
Grease an extra-large casserole dish with oil and set aside. Peel the squash. Thinly slice off the bottom and top and then slice through the middle lengthwise to make two halves. Remove seeds with a spoon. Chop the two halves into 1-inch chunks and place into the oiled casserole dish. (Time-saving tip: buy a couple pounds of pre-chopped fresh butternut squash from the produce section of the grocery store. This was a major game-changer in the Liddon household, let me tell ya!.) Add the minced garlic, parsley, oil, and salt into the casserole dish and toss with squash until combined (hands or a spoon both work well for this step!). Do not add the kale yet. Cover the casserole dish with tinfoil and pop it into the fridge. Place the chopped kale into a tightly sealed zip bag (being sure to squeeze any air out beforehand) or a small airtight container and refrigerate. For the parmesan: Place all of the Almond-Pepita Parmesan ingredients into a mini food processor and pulse together until coarsely ground. Transfer the mixture into a zip bag or small container before placing it in the fridge. All three casserole components can be stored in the fridge for 2 to 3 days. When ready to cook the casserole, remove all prepped ingredients from the fridge. Poke a few air holes into the tinfoil covering the casserole dish. Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Place the covered casserole dish in the oven and bake for about 45 to 50 minutes, until the squash is fork tender. Carefully remove the squash from the oven and reduce heat to 350°F (180°C). Remove the tinfoil (be careful as some steam might escape from the dish as you do). Stir the chopped kale into the squash until combined. Sprinkle all of the parmesan over top of the squash. Bake for another 6 to 10 minutes, uncovered, until the nuts are lightly toasted and the kale has wilted. Watch closely so you don’t burn either the nuts or kale. Serve warm, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Leftovers will keep refrigerated in an airtight container for about 5 days. To reheat, simply scoop the squash into an oiled skillet and heat over medium, stirring frequently, until heated through. Season to taste, and enjoy!

Tips:

* I doubled the original amount of kale for extra green power!

** Feel free to swap in any nuts or seeds you prefer! There are endless possibilities. Pecans (which are used in the original version) are lovely, too.

 

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Starbucks Unveils Upcoming Dairy-Free Bottled Beverages + Allergy Alerts and More Dairy-Free News this Week

originally from: https://www.godairyfree.org/news/starbucks-bottled-beverages

Starbucks makes a splash in our Friday Bite this week with dairy-free bottled beverages and vegan cupcakes. Plus, two food allergy recall affect milk allergic consumers. Starbucks Unveils Upcoming Dairy-Free Bottled Beverages Starbucks plans to evolve its Ready-to-Drink (RTD) line-up next year to include non-dairy versions of consumer favorites. Customers will be able to enjoy the […]

The post Starbucks Unveils Upcoming Dairy-Free Bottled Beverages + Allergy Alerts and More Dairy-Free News this Week appeared first on Go Dairy Free.

My Thoughts On Fasted Cardio By Amy Ferguson

originally from: http://www.discount-supplements.co.uk/blog/fasted-cardio-amy-ferguson/

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It is well popularised in the fitness world that as soon as you start dieting or if you want to get lean that you must start doing fasted cardio. Fasted cardio is as it says on the tin, doing your cardio before eating any meals. Now as I always say, everyone responds differently to different types of training and the best thing to do is what works for you and your lifestyle. I have used fasted cardio in the past and sometimes because of my work schedule I train fasted, as I don’t like eating so early in the morning. One of my favourite things to do is to walk my dog in the mornings in a fasted state as I enjoy it.

Here are my thoughts on the pros and cons:
Pros:

As your body will need energy from somewhere it can help to increase fat burning as body fat will provide a great source of energy. However, the body will also look to muscle to use for energy.
After exercise your body/muscles will be wanting food and there is a case for saying that therefore the nutrients will be better absorbed due to the heightened insulin sensitivity experienced post exercise.
Fasted cardio is usually done first thing in the morning which is when cortisol is at its highest, adding in this type of training will increase the level of cortisol. As I have explained in previous blogs it is important to manage cortisol levels when trying to diet down as it can cause your body to hold on to fat.
There are some studies to suggest that cardio done fasted increases blood flow to your abdominals. This increase in blood flow can help shift the ‘stubborn’ fat in this area.

Cons:

Intensity is often lower- when you are not fuelled for your workout it can often mean that it is harder for you to attack your workout with the same intensity. This can result in an overall lower total calorie burn. As shown in many studies the calorie burn from high intensity interval style training is often better for fat loss so this is something to consider when planning your cardio for fat loss
As we all know one of the main factors in fat loss is total calorie intake and expenditure. If you are still eating in a calorie surplus then doing your cardio fasted is not really going to make a difference.

As you can see there are both pros and cons to this method of fat loss but I however feel that HITT cardio is much more effective and here’s a few reasons why:

It allows for more variety – conditioning can take many forms. You can do something as simple as basic sprint intervals or try tyre flips or sled drags.
It helps maintain/gain muscle- you can apply the same principles from your weightlifting to your cardio by slowly increasing the weight during your conditioning e.g. Upping the weight you push on the prowler or sled for example.
It increases mitochondrial capacity. This increase in oxidative capacity leads to greater fat loss. Put simply this means that you will continue to burn calories even after you’ve finished your workout.
It takes half the time than traditional means of cardio so it’ll be putting your body under less stress.
It can be fun! You can do your circuits with friends or turn it into a competition.
Effective for fat burning.

Now there are many factors when it comes to fat loss and cardio should be a tool that you incorporate smartly when trying to achieve your goal. And most importantly remember that when it comes to fat loss and cardio that everyone’s body will respond differently or require different methods, so experiment and see what works for you!

Happy training everyone!

Check out all our training accessories here

 

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Plant-Based Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gluten-Free Pecan Crust

originally from: https://www.godairyfree.org/recipes/plant-based-pumpkin-cheesecake

This recipe for plant-based pumpkin cheesecake was posted here exactly seven years ago, to the date. But it became buried in our news archives. So today I’m giving the post a more user-friendly makeover and moving it to a permanent home in our recipe section. It was originally shared with us by my friend and […]

The post Plant-Based Pumpkin Cheesecake with Gluten-Free Pecan Crust appeared first on Go Dairy Free.

Grandma’s Danish Apple Cake

originally from: http://www.greenkitchenstories.com/grandmas-danish-apple-cake/

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I know what you are thinking. Where is the cake and what is that red sauce? In most other countries, this would be called a trifle or a parfait, but in Denmark we call this an old-fashioned apple cake. I have the fondest memories leaning over a huge bowl filled with Gammeldags æblekage at my grandmother’s kitchen table. It was smooth apple sauce (our version is red here) topped with crushed cookie crumbles and whipped cream and it was my favorite dessert in the world. Me and my twin brother spent every other weekend and school holiday at my grandmother’s house. She was the warmest and calmest person we knew, always with a smile on her face. My memories of her are fading but whenever I think of her I can smell the cigarillos she loved to smoke and the hair spray she always wore. And I remember her huge black & white marble coffee table that we often sat around and I remember her warm hugs. She had a big house and rented out one room in the basement, one on the top floor and one in the garden to various tenants. On weekends she baked for everyone in the house. Large batches of spiced pound cake, chocolate cake or her famous (in my world) old-fashioned apple cake. I never thought of it back then but – damn! – she must have been the best landlord. When my twin brother and I were 10 years old she sadly passed away, two days after Christmas, and she left a big hole of emptiness in me. I have been thinking about her so much lately as I have been making this recipe for our kids and telling them stories about her. So this cake is for you grandma. /Luise

Our version actually has quite a few own quirks compared to my grandmother’s. We ditched the sugar in the apple sauce (because it’s really not needed if you use sweet apples), replaced cookie crumble with a simple nut and date crumble and used whipped coconut cream (nr heavy cream) on top to make it vegan. But it still tastes a lot like the ones in her house. And the texture is ace! It’s sweet and tangy and soft and rich and crunchy. And it’s actually pretty easy to make as well. 1) Cook apple sauce (or use readymade). 2) Chop toasted nuts and mix with sticky dates. 3) Whip cream. 4) Layer. 5) Dive in.

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While testing the first version of the recipe, David’s concern was that it didn’t look pretty enough. I peeled the apples and didn’t blend the sauce so it came together rather yellow/brownish. But he figured out that by using the most deep red apples we could find, kept the peel on, cooked on low heat and then blended the sauce, it got a beautiful pink/red color. I’ve never seen an apple sauce looking radiant like that before.

Make sure to cook a double batch of the sauce. It’s so good on top of yogurt and porridge bowls.

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We are not experts on whipped coconut cream. We have failed at making it just as many times as we have succeeded. Different brands behave differently and some simply don’t work at all. Key is keeping it chilled to get the cream to separate from the liquid and the chilling is also essential when whipping. Usually, the cream solidifies so you scoop it out with a spoon, but when making this video we used a brand that separated without solidifying so we could simply pour the cream into the bowl while the rest of the liquid stayed at the bottom of the can. If you want to learn more about Whipped Coconut Cream (and which US brands that work best), go read Ashlae’s post on Coconut Whipped Cream.

I should also mention that if you are not vegan or too fond of coconut cream, regular whipped cream is just as delicious.

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Grandma’s Danish Apple Cake
Serves 4

If you cant find red apples like ours, you can add a little pomegranate juice or grated beetroot to the apple sauce while mixing to make it more red.

1 kg / 2 lb red apples
250 ml / 1 cup water
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
1/2 tsp ground vanilla powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon (or cardamom)
1 tbsp lemon juice

180 g / 1 cup almonds
100 g / 1 cup walnuts
8 dates

whipped coconut cream (or regular cream)

Rinse the apples and chop them in bite size pieces, discarding the core. Place in a large sauce pan along with water, fresh ginger, vanilla powder and cinnamon. Let simmer on low heat for approx 20 minutes or until soft. Meanwhile, place the nuts on a tray and roast at 150°C / 300°F for approx 15 minutes. Remove the stone from the dates and use a knife to chop them or fork to mash them. Chop the nuts medium fine, reserve a handful a nuts for topping and mix the rest with the date paste into a crumble. Set aside. When the apples are done, use a hand (immersion) blender to mix into a smooth apple sauce. Stir lemon juice into the sauce, scoop into a container and leave to cool.

Scoop out the solid cream from 1 can of chilled coconut milk. Use a hand mixer to whip the coconut cream until it’s fluffy and forms soft peaks. If it feels too runny, place the bowl in the freezer for 10-15 minutes and then try whipping again. If you like, you can fold in some maple syrup or vanilla into the cream after it is whipped. If using regular cream, simply whip it until soft peaks form.

Place apple sauce as a bottom layer in 4 glasses or jars (or use 1 big bowl). Top with nut and date crumble and then scoop over whipped cream. Sprinkle chopped nuts on top. Enjoy!

They sit quite well in the fridge so they can be prepared a few hours ahead.

PS! Yesterday also happened to be Noah’s first birthday! Happy day little man! David usually post a little letter to the kids here on their first birthday but he’s been a little busy lately but promises that he will write it in a later post.

Green Chef Gluten Free Meal Delivery Service

originally from: https://simplygluten-free.com/blog/2017/10/green-chef.html

I’m sure by now you’ve heard of meal delivery services. They box up portioned foods and ship them to your home weekly and all you have to do is open the box, follow the recipe steps, and just like that – dinner is done! The convenience of

The post Green Chef Gluten Free Meal Delivery Service appeared first on Simply Gluten Free.

Eat Your Beets By Alex Shoebridge

originally from: http://www.discount-supplements.co.uk/blog/eat-beets-alex-shoebridge/

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We hope that by now you realise how important it is to eat a variety of fruit and vegetables every day (see our recent Coaches’ Tip on the importance of food rotation!), and while lots of you will be devouring broccoli, kale and asparagus, there are a few outstanding choices which are often overlooked!

The three we want to tell you about today are carrots, beetroot and ginger.

Carrots:

Carrots are a great source of antioxidants with a high fibre content, the latter promoting a healthy digestive tract and blood sugar stability. They contain β-Carotene (Beta-Carotene) which the body converts into Vitamin A. Vitamin A is essential for healthy skin, good vision, and a healthy immune system. β-Carotene has also been shown to slow cognitive decline and help older people retain lung strength.

Beetroot:

Beetroot is a great source of iron and folic acid. They can help lower blood pressure, have recently received a lot of press for their well-documented boost to exercise performance and they can even help to prevent dementia. The nitrates found in beets are converted into Nitric oxide by enzymes in our saliva, which enhances bloodflow and have been shown to improve endurance.

Ginger:

Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties, has been shown to promote energy circulation, and is known to benefit proper blood circulation. It reduces motion sickness and shortens the amount of time we suffer with colds and the flu. Ginger has a beneficial impact on nutrient absorption, and is therefore an ideal choice for improving digestion.

 

Here are our top two ways of getting these vibrant vegetables into your diet:

1. Grate one large beet, two large carrots, and a thumb-sized piece of ginger; mix in a bowl, then top with some Himalayan Pink Salt and the juice of half a lime; this makes a delicious side salad for lunches and dinners.

2. Blend the three ingredients in a NutriBullet or similar; if the taste is too strong for you, add half an apple or one whole apple to make your super smoothie a bit sweeter.

Enjoy!

Alex Shoebridge

Check out our ‘Greens’ products here

 

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