Easy Butternut Squash noodles with lentils

Butternut Squash Noodles with Lentils & Pistachios

A busy girl’s weeknight dinner: butternut squash noodles tossed with cashew cream sauce on a pile of steamed lentils and topped with chili-spiced pistachios. A delicious, gluten free and dairy free meal — on your table in minutes.

Lazy girls weeknight dinner...julienned butternut squash noodles tossed with easy cashew cream on a layer of lentils. Topped with chili-spiced pistachios. Dinner in less than 10 minutes. This dish is as simple as you can get — while still looking like a rockstar in the kitchen. Butternut squash noodles are my version of a pantry meal. Leftover cashew cream sauce from last week. Leftover TJ’s steamed lentils. Bibb lettuce courtesy of a Costco 4-pack. And pistachios…a pantry staple!

Easy Butternut Squash noodles with lentils

These chili-spiced pistachios are a great way to fancify a dish. Just throw them in a bowl, sprinkle with some chili powder and toss with a little bit of really good, tasty olive oil. I use these all the time to add some oomph to a bowl of veggies, salads, grains and pasta. Any nut, seed or spice will work! You can also get fancy with different types of oils, like truffle or avocado oil.

julienne the butternut squash

The noodles are super easy to make, too. No fancy spiralizer needed. A regular vegetable peeler created these long strands of noodles. The size and shape of your butternut will be what predicts the length of your noodles. You can also spiralize your sqaush if you have one. Once you’ve shaved off enough noodles, cut up the leftover squash and roast it for another meal.

Butternut squash noodles with cashew creamI tossed these noodles raw with my cashew sauce. If you want a warmer dish, heat the noodles, not the sauce. It doesn’t heat well. To heat, just add the noodles to a warm pan with a little olive oil and then toss with the sauce. So the next time you’re pressed for time, remember that this healthy, delicious easy to make dish is just a few minutes away!

Butternut Squash “Noodles” with Lentils & Pistachios

Butternut Squash “Noodles” with Lentils & Pistachios

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups butternut squash, peeled
  • 1 cup cooked lentils (I use Trader Joe's steamed lentils)
  • 2 Tbsp shelled pistachios
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp good extra virgin olive oil or truffle oil
  • 2 leaves Boston Bibb lettuce
  • For the Cashew Cream
  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked for 20 minutes or overnight
  • ¼ cup hemp seeds
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 very small garlic clove, minced
  • 1 Tbsp miso paste
  • 1-2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • Dash sea salt, to taste
  • 2-3 fresh sage leaves, chopped
  • few drops liquid stevia, optional

Instructions

  1. Blend cashew cream sauce ingredients in a blender until well combined and set aside. Place pistachios, chili powder, and olive oil in a small bowl, mix well and set aside. Using a vegetable peeler, peel butternut squash into noodles. To heat noodles, warm in a pan with a little olive oil. Remove from heat and toss with a tablespoon or so of cashew cream (you can also toss noodles raw with the warm cashew cream from the blender). Heat lentils and place on top of a few leaves of Bibb lettuce. Top lentils with squash noodles and sprinkle on pistachios.
http://foodconfidence.com/2014/12/04/butternut-squash-noodles-with-lentils-chili-spiced-pistachios/
Tempeh Butternut Squash and Tempeh

Chipotle Chili with Tempeh and Butternut Squash

Get your squash on with a hearty and delicious chipotle and ancho chili made with organic tempeh and butternut squash!

Chipotle Chili with Tempeh and Butternut Squash

I love being able to eat the same meal as my husband. It’s a rare occurrence but when it happens, it’s pretty cool. In this particular case, I’m talking chipotle chili!

A simmering pot of tasty chili on the stove while watching the football game marks the beginning of fall in our house. Keep in mind I rarely watch the football game and I hardly ever get to eat the chili, but I still like the idea of it. The typical scenario for me is I’m cooking up a meaty chili for Hany while he’s watching the game. I end up watching him eat the chili while I eat a salad. The worst part about living with a meat-eater is cooking a meal and not being able to eat what you make. But not this time! This time I made a meat-free chili that any meat-eater would enjoy! I used crumbled up tempeh for the meaty part, two different kinds of beans, hominy, and diced butternut squash.

I’m kind of a spice junkie and chili pepper is one of my favorite go-to seasonings. For this recipe I used a combination of chili powders (including chipotle and ancho chili), turmeric and cumin. I garnished with scallions, chopped cilantro and Cabot’s Legacy Collection cheddar cheese. So good! The perfect mix of flavors and a lovely lunch on a sunny fall afternoon.

Chipotle Chili with Tempeh and Butternut Squash Chili

Chipotle Chili with Tempeh and Butternut Squash Chili

Ingredients

  • 1 package organic Tempeh, crumbled
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 2 Tbsp chipotle chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp ancho chili powder
  • 2 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 Tbsp turmeric
  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup red onion, diced
  • 1 cup butternut squash, diced
  • 1 can kidney beans, drained
  • 1 can pinto beans, drained
  • 1 cup hominy
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes with juice
  • Couple of shakes liquid smoke
  • Diced scallions, chopped cilantro and shredded cheddar cheese, for topping (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat oil in large dutch oven. Add onions, peppers and tempeh along with 1 Tbsp each of the chili powders, cumin, paprika and salt. Saute until vegetables are soft and tempeh is browned.
  2. Once browned, add the butternut squash, beans,hominy, and canned tomatoes along with 1 Tbsp more of chipotle chili and the turmeric. Taste and season, as needed. Add the smoke, if using. Simmer on stove until butternut squash are tender. Serve topped with cheese, cilantro and scallions or whatever you love!
http://foodconfidence.com/2014/10/27/chipotle-chili-with-tempeh-and-butternut-squash/

puttanesca style zucchini noodles with olives and cherry tomatoes

Zucchini Noodles with Cherry Tomatoes & Olives

Zucchini noodles with cherry tomatoes and black olives

I think pasta might be making a comeback. I keep seeing recipes everywhere for fun, light, summery dishes using orzo, penne, and spaghetti.I admit I long for the days when I could feast on pasta and not feel like I’m committing  a crime. Is pasta bad for me? Probably not. Can I eat an “appropriate” amount and feel satisfied? Definitely not. Especially when my mom is the one making it. That’s why I love zucchini noodles. I can be a little glutinous and still feel good about myself.

puttanesca zucchini noodles - Foodconfidence.com

Last week I shared this cold zoodle salad with you. This week I went with a warm dish. Pasta Puttanesca is actually a childhood favorite. I love anything with olives and although this is not a traditional Puttanesca sauce, it worked perfectly for me.

heirloom cherry tomatoes

These fancy cherry tomatoes were my inspiration. Aren’t they amazing? They made a lovely base for my sauce. I sauteed them in a pan with some olive oil, garlic and anchovy paste until softened. Then I added the capers, olives and fresh basil. My house smelled gorgeous while this sauce was cooking up. To me, there’s not much better a smell than that of sauteed garlic — it’s always the start of something delicious!

zucchini puttanesca

It’s such a simple dish, yet it has so much flavor. If you love Puttanesca, you will love this sauce! So tell me, have you tried substituting your favorite pasta dishes with zucchini noodles yet? I promise, you won’t be disappointed. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be so happy you can start to enjoy pasta again without feeling “bad” about it.

Here’s the recipe. Enjoy!

Zucchini Noodles with Cherry Tomatoes & Olives

Ingredients

  • 3 zucchini, spiralized
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced (or to taste)
  • 1/4 cup capers
  • 1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
  • 1 handful fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tsp anchovy paste (I use the kind in the tube; vegetarians -- feel free to omit)
  • Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • Crushed red pepper, optional

Instructions

  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil. Once heated, add garlic and anchovy paste, if using. Cook until anchovy dissolves and garlic browns. Add the cherry tomatoes and cook until softened about 5-8 minutes. Then add the capers and olives. Simmer for about 5 minutes more, or until the tomatoes make a sauce. Add salt, to taste. Stir in the basil. While sauce is cooking, spiralize the zucchini and place in large bowl (I cut my noodles with a kitchen scissor so they are easier to eat). When ready, toss the sauce with the zucchini and eat immediately.
http://foodconfidence.com/2014/07/02/recipe-zucchini-noodles-cherry-tomatoes-black-olives/