Zucchini Casserole ~ Easy Vegetarian Main Dish

zucchini casserole ~ thecomynspace.com

I’ve made this a few times and we really love it! This recipe makes 6 servings but this holds well in the fridge and reheats really well. Given how poorly the zucchini casserole did, I was worried the first time!zucchini casserole ~ thecomynspace.com

You’ll need:
3 medium zucchini, washed and sliced into rounds (you should have 6-8 cups)
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
2 tsp seasoned salt or your favorite spice mix (I use Forward from Penzy’s)
1 egg
1/2 freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/2 cup bread crumbs

Preheat the oven to 350. Steam the zucchini for 2 minutes, until it’s just tender. Drain and return the warm large pot. Add in the butter and toss to coat. Once the butter is melted, stir in the flour. In a small bowl, whisk together the spice mix, egg and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Add to the warm zucchini and toss to coat. Turn out into a greased casserole dish (I use an 8×8 dish) and top with the bread crumbs and remaining cheese. Bake for 30 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes before diving in.

Pasta with Butternut Squash and Blue Cheese

This is one my favorite ways to use butternut squash! I cannot believe I haven’t shared this here before because this little gem is a fall staple and great warm dinner.

pasta with butternut squash and blue cheese~thecomynspace.com

You’ll Need:
4 cups cubed and peeled butternut squash
1 tsp olive oil + cooking spray
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
8 oz uncooked pasta, small shapes are the best
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup 2/% milk
1 tsp flour
2 large egg yolks
2 oz blue cheese crumbles (about 1/2 a cup)
toasted walnuts, for topping
pasta with butternut squash and blue cheese~thecomynspace.com

Preheat oven to 425. Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray and add squash. Spray again and add 1/4 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp black pepper. Toss to coat and bake until fork tender, about 25 minutes.

Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain and keep warm.

In a medium saucepan over medium high heat, add olive oil and swirl to coat. Add onion and garlic, sauté 3 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup milk, remaining salt and pepper. In a separate bowl, combine 1/2 cup milk, 2 egg yolks and flour. Slowly add egg mixture to pan, stirring with a whisk. Once all mixed, add in blue cheese, reserving a few crumbles for the top. Cook 5 minutes, until thickened, stirring often with a whisk. If there is room in a pan, stir in butternut squash and pasta, stirring to combine. If there isn’t room, toss in a large bowl. Toss with reserved cheese and walnuts, if using.

Dinner for Two – Week 2

Here’s what was on the menu last week 🙂 Just the gnocchi was new, everything else is an old standby which makes life so much easier for me! M has been working later lately so we are usually doing a more staggered approach to dinner. At least I only resorted to hummus and chips once!homemade black bean burgers

Monday 7/28- Butternut Squash and Pasta with Blue Cheese
Tuesday 7/29- leftovers
Wednesday 7/30- Anniversary Dinner
Thursday 7/31- Gnocchi with asparagus and peas
Friday 8/1- Black Bean Burgers

Vegetarian Chili Rellenos

veggie chile rellenos thecomynspace.com

M has made these for us a few times, chili rellenos are his favorite Mexican inspired food and these make it easier to indulge more often. They also seem to heat up great for him at work. As I always have crock pot beans of some sort in the fridge, this is certainly something we can usually make in a pinch!

veggie chile rellenos thecomynspace.com

You’ll Need:
4 poblano chilis, sliced and ribs removed, on a lightly creased baking sheet
1 can beans, we used kidney but any would work
1 small white onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, minced, seeded if you prefer
ground cumin, salt and pepper to taste
1 cup of your favorite shredded cheese.

Saute the onions, garlic and jalapeño in a deep sided pan over medium high heat. Once onions are glassy, stir in cumin, salt and pepper as well as the drained beans. Stir in half the cheese until just melted Cook until the beans are warmed through and then spoon into the prepped pobanos and top the 8 halves with the remaining cheese. Broil or cook on 350 until cheese is melted.

Pico de Gallo Salsa with Jicama

pico de gallo l

M made this after I was traveling and he meal planned for the week himself. I have to say, I was in for quite a treat! This is incredibly crisp and super spicy. This recipe made a huge bowl that we ate for dinner over grilled portobellos with enough for chips for the next few days.

pica de gallo w

You’ll Need:
1 medium jicama, finely diced
6 roma tomatoes, finely diced
1 yellow tomatoes, finely diced
6 oz mint, finely chopped
1 serrano, seeded and finely diced
1 jalepeno with seeds, finely diced
1.5 tbsp white vinegar
2 tbsp salt
1 scant tsp Pico de Gallo powder (dried chili and salt) or to taste

Combine all the ingredients and refrigerate for maximum spiciness.

Spicy Corn on the Cob

spicy corn on the cob on thecomynspace.com

This isn’t really a recipe but more a technique. One awesome thing about life in the Midwest is the abundance of fresh sweet corn. M usually grills it in the husk and then we top it with fresh crema, cojito cheese and this spicy pepper and salt mix called Pico de Gallo. It’s the perfect balance of sweet and crunchy, rich and creamy, and downright spicy! What’s your favorite way to make corn on the cob?spicy corn on the cob on thecomynspace.com

Crunchy Tofu Tacos~Vegetarian Taco Night

I’m always looking to up my taco game and while I really liked the flavors here, this is a lot of work for a weeknight taco dinner. I’d love to keep flavors but go with the much faster TVP as the protein in the future.

crunchy tofu tacos

You’ll Need:
1 14 oz package extra firm tofu
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp cashews
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3 tbsp water
1 1/2 tbsp sugar
1 1/2 cups julienned carrots
1 1/2 cups julienned radishes
2 tbsp mayonnaise (or unflavored greek yogurt)
1 1/2 tsp sriracha
1 tsp rice vinegar
8 corn tortillas
1/4 cup sliced green onions

Slice the tofu in half, so you have two inch thick slabs and let soak on several paper towels under a dutch oven or other heavy pan for about 10 minutes.

To make the quick pickled vegetables, heat rice vinegar, water and sugar until boiling and pour over carrots and radishes. Let sit for at least 15 minutes.

In a dry pan, over medium heat, toast the cashews until they just start to turn color. Remove and roughly chop.

Add oil to the pan, and swirl to coat. Raise temperature to high to pan fry the tofu. Fry until golden on all sides.

Whisk together sriracha, remaining teaspoon of rice vinegar and mayonnaise to make the sauce.

When the tofu is done, removed from pan and cube. Using the hot skillet, toast your corn tortillas, one at a time. Assemble tacos and dig in!

Summer Recipe Round Up

In the spirit of this awesome weather and yesterday’s Summer Bucket List post, here are some of my favorite light and summery foods!

kale with blueberry vingairette~the comyn space
Kale with Blueberry Vinaigrette (shown with fried tofu)

wild rice chicken salad1
Wild Rice Chicken Salad

Peas with Feta and Bacon
Fresh Peas with Feta and Bacon

catfish po'boys~the comyn space
Catfish Po’Boys

And let’s not forget the summer foods I do not make at home, the perennial deep fried buckeyes from the Ohio State fair. I recommend sharing the order of 5 😉

Gingery Snap Pea Salad~Fast Side Dish Recipe

I have made this a few times and love how fast it is whip together a ‘girl dinner’ when M is at work late. It’s a big blast of flavor but packs in plenty of veg too!

gingery snap pea salad on thecomynspace.com

Serves up to four as a side, one as a main (if you’re me)

1/2 lb untrimmed sugar snap peas
1/2 lb sliced Napa cabbage
4 medium radishes, quartered an thinly sliced
3 large scallions, sliced on the bias
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

For the gingery miso dressing:
1 tbsp fresh ginger, peeled
1 large garlic clove
2 tbsp yellow or white miso
1 tbsp honey
1/4 cup rice vinegar
3 tbsp olive oil (you can sub up to 2 tbsp toasted sesame oil but I ran out)

gingery snap pea salad on thecomynspace.com

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Boil the snap peas for 1 to 2 minutes until just barely cooked. Strain and run them under cold water to stop the cooking process. While that cools, mix the dressing in a bowl. Using a garlic press, mince both garlic and ginger, taking care to get the ginger juice in the bowl as well. Whisk in remaining dressing ingredients until well combined. Toss with veggies and serve immediately (storing this in the fridge caused the cabbage to wilt).