Tag Archives: Dinner Ideas

Bison Spaghetti (Squash) and Meatballs

Standard

You will LOVE this spin on an old favorite.  The spaghetti squash is a delicious substitute for pasta and much healthier for you.  It’s worth the work, I promise!

My goal is to make more sustainable meals that are healthy and promote a balance of nutrients from whole foods, free range and/or wild animals, and organic vegetables.  🙂 This meal happens to be gluten free and follows the “Paleo Diet” theme of you’re into that kind of thing.

Squash

Prep Time:  1 hr (Includes cooking squash)

Cook Time:  1hr

Serves: 3-4 (depending on how big your squash is). You can always make two just in case.  You will have plenty of sauce and meatballs for 4 though.

Bison Meatballs:

  • 1lb Grass Fed Bison
  • 2 TBS Basil and Pine Nut Pesto (I make my own but you can buy at the store).
  • 1/4 C. Chopped White Onion
  • 1 tsp. Wild Garlic (you can sub regular garlic if need be).
  • 1 Egg White, Cage Free
  • 1 tsp. Celtic Salt
  • 1 tsp. Pepper
  • 1 tsp. Coconut Oil
  1. Mix well and form into 20 small meatballs.
  2. Cook in 1 tsp. of coconut oil until browned and mostly done.
  3. Reserve in separate bowl.

Sauce: 

  • 26.46 oz Chopped Tomatoes,  I use Pomi brand for ease of use and it’s not from a BPA can.
  • 1 C.  White or Baby Bella Mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/4 C. White Onion, diced
  • 1 tsp. Basil
  • 1 tsp. Sea Salt
  1. Take same pan meatballs were cooked in (a braiser or dutch oven works well) and add mushrooms and onion. Cook for 1 min.
  2. Empty tomatoes into mixture and scrape the bits of the pans from cooking meatballs. (This is great for flavor).
  3. Add spices. Simmer for 15 min.
  4. Add meatballs back in and simmer for 25 more min.

Spaghetti Squash:

  • 1 Spaghetti Squash, halved longways.
  • 1 tsp. Coconut Oil
  • Water
  1. Preheat Oven to 375 F.
  2. In a large glass pan add 1/2 inch of water and a tsp of coconut oil.
  3. Place squash cut side down in water.
  4. Bake for 30-35 min or until tender.
  5. Scrape with fork across the squash ( it will look like spaghetti).

Serve meatballs on top of spaghetti squash! 🙂

Sauce

Advertisements

Grilled Shrimp with French Green Lentils and Roasted Carrots, Fennel, and Shallots

Standard

This healthy and earthy dish is very satisfying and simple to make. You will be happy you tried it 🙂 I used the carrots and fennel from our CSA from JBG

 

Prep : 25 min

Cook Time: 30 min

Serves: 2

Shrimpy

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup cooked green lentils
  • 10 Large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined, leave tail on.
  • 1/2 Cup carrot, cubed
  • 1/2 Cup fennel, shaved
  • 1/4 Cup shallots, shaved
  • 2 TBS balsamic vinegar
  • 3 TBS olive oil
  • Pinch of dill pollen
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Instructions:

  1. Make a vinaigrette with balsamic, 1 TBS olive oil, pinch of dill pollen, pinch of salt and pepper. Mix well.
  2. Roast veggies on foil lined pan with 1 tbs olive oil and salt and pepper pinch for 20-25 min. Reserve in foil to keep warm. 
  3. Heat medium skillet to high and saute shrimp in a TBS of olive oil, season with salt and pepper.
  4. Mix roasted veggies, lentils, and vinaigrette together and serve shrimp on top.
  5. Enjoy!

A “Lighter” Version of Crawfish Étouffée That Will Keep Your Waistline Happy :)

Standard

Using a stick of butter or even a half a stick of butter just doesn’t sound very appealing to me especially after the holidays. So I made one of my favorites with a quarter of the fat and it turned out awesome!  You will notice I served this in a “bread boat”, this is how Evan likes it. You can do it plain, in a boat, or on top of rice-your choice!

Boat

Prep Time: 25 min

Cook Time: 30 min

Serves: 4-6 People

Mmm

Ingredients:

  • 1lb Crawfish meat (shelled and deveined)
  • 1 C. Celery, chopped
  • 1 C. Red and Green Bell Pepper Mixture, chopped
  • 1 C. Sweet Onion, chopped
  • 2 Cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Bay leave
  • 1/2 C. Chicken Stock, no sodium
  • 2 TBS Butter
  • 1 TBS Coconut Oil
  • 1 TBS Favorite cajun seasoning
  • 1/2 TBS. Jalapeno (fresh), minced
  • 1 tsp. Black pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 1.5 TBS Flour dissolved in water

Instructions:

  • Heat butter and coconut oil on medium, once hot add garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.
  • Add the Holy Trinity: Bells, Onions, and Celery! Saute for 12-15 min
  • Add Crawfish, seasoning, bay leave, and chicken stock and simmer for 10 min.
  • Add flour to thicken sauce and season to taste with salt or more cajun seasoning.
  • Serve over white rice or in a bread boat.

Enjoy!

ZBD Style Osso Buco with Homemade Twisted Bread

Standard

This is a very rich and comforting dish that is best enjoyed with friends and family. It takes a decent amount of time to prepare and cook but is worth the trouble and wait. Anything done with love is worth doing… and eating! 🙂 I suggest drinking the remainder bottle of wine you didn’t use in the recipe while you are cooking for the best results 😉 Please note there are several methods out there for Oso Buco, this is my own version, ZBD style 😉 By no means am I claiming this to be traditional. My Blogger Friend Chica Andaluza inspired me to make this and I’m glad I did!

Prep Time: About an hour

Cook Time: 4 hours

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 2lbs Veal shank, about 4-5 shanks (Please find local or humanely raised veal or use beef).
  • 1/2 C. Carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 C. Diced onions
  • 1/2 C. Diced celery
  • 1 Clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 C. Flour
  • 1 C. Red wine
  • 1 C. Chicken Stock
  • .5 C. Tomato puree
  • 3 TBS Tomato paste
  • 1/4 C. Olive oil
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 4 Thyme strands, fresh
  • 6 Green peppercorns, whole
  • 6 Pink peppercorns, whole
  • Cheese cloth
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 275 degrees F. Preheat large oven proof braising skillet on high on stove. Add oil until just about smoking.
  2. Toss washed and dried veal shanks in flour, dust with salt and pepper, and fry in 1/4 C. olive oil for 3 min on each side. Set shanks aside on a separate plate.
  3. Add veggies: Celery , onion, carrot, and garlic to pan and cook until onions are translucent and mixture is fragrant.
  4. While the veggies are cooking make your herb sachet: Cheesecloth, bay leaves, peppercorns, and thyme. Tie up in a nice little bundle and throw it in the skillet.
  5. Add wine and reduce to medium high, scraping the bits off the bottom of the pan for about 3 min.
  6. Add the stock and tomato puree and paste and mix well. Keep simmering for about 5 min. You will want to salt and pepper to taste on this dish since your stick may be more salty than mine. But go ahead and start with a 3/4 TBS of salt and pepper and stir. This is the point where I add another dash of wine from the bottle (for good measure). 🙂 I probably use about a cup and a half all together…
  7. Cover brasier or dutch oven with it’s lid and pop in the oven for 3.5 hours.
  8. Taste the sauce and add more salt if needed when done. It shouldn’t need it… but just in case. Remove sachet and serve it up with lots of the gravy/juice veggie mixture. 

Bread:

Prep Time: 1 hr and 10 min

Cook Time: 20-30 min

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2.5-3.5 C. of Bread Flour
  • 1 PKG Rapid Rise Yeast
  • 1/4 C. Greek yogurt
  • 1 TBS Canola oil
  • 3/4 C. 160 degree water.
  • 1 Salt
  • 1 tsp. Canola oil for greasing bowl
  • Corn meal for dusting pan.
  • 1 Pad of butter

Instructions:

  1. In your mixer add 2.5 C of bread flour (save the rest for reserve). Add yeast to flour and mix while dry.
  2. Heat up yogurt, water, and 1 TBS of oil to 160. Mix well. Transfer to a pourable measuring cup or regular cup.
  3. Turn mixer onto speed 2 and slowly mix in liquid mixture. Mix for approx. 5 min. From here add flour if needed until doudh is cleaned off sides of mixer bowl. (Use that reserve flour for this).
  4. Let dough rise for about an hour in a greased bowl, cover bowl.
  5. Roll out dough into a large rectangle, and roll up long ways. Cut long roll in half and twist up the bread tapering at the ends.
  6. Rub butter on top of bread loaf and place the bread on a baking sheet dusted in cornmeal.
  7. Bake for 20-30 min or until done. 

Enjoy and Cheers! I highly suggest dipping that bread in the osso buco juice and slurping up that bone marrow or also putting it on the bread! Just a suggestion 😉

Happy New Year from Zestybeandog and Co! Yard Birds with Agave Garlic Citrus Jalapeno Glaze, Black Eyed Peas, and Sun Dried Tomato Bread

Standard

Happy 2012 to Everyone! It’s been a crazy couple of weeks but all is well in Zestybeandog Land! We have successfully had Christmas with both families, packed a 1,700 sqft house into a 10×20 storage unit, moved to Lago Vista from Austin to stay at Evan’s  parents home for the next 1-2 years while they’re in Singapore, unpacked some kitchen stuff, had a low key NYE celebration playing poker and enjoying drinks, and of course cooked up a great New Year’s Day meal for everyone. We are so grateful for our families for all of the amazing help we had… or we’d probably still be packing boxes! Here’s to new adventures and good times in 2012. I wish you all the best of everything not only for 2012 but for all the years to come. Cheers!

I’d also like to give a personal shout out to my fellow foodie bloggers: Five Reflections, Rufus’s Food and Spirits Guide, Simple Speedy Snacks, Twistedvines, Talinorfali, Bam’s Kitchen, Saffron and Honey, The Kale Chronicles, The Complete Cook Book, Coffee with Caroline,Pure and Complex, Sports Glutton, Charles with Five Euro Food, Tandy with Lavender and Lime, Sweet Caroline’s Cooking,Hotly Spiced, Edible Substance, Food Diary of a Picky Eater, Adesinsa’s Kitchen AND to all I may have missed, I’m still in a food coma 😉

Yard Birds with Glaze

Prep Time: 20 min

Cook Time: 3-4 hours

Serves: 8

Ingredients:

  • 2 Whole chickens 4-4.5 lbs each
  • 1 C. Amber agave nectar
  • 2 TBS Butter
  • 1 Jalapeno, minced
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1 Clementine, juiced
  • 2 TBS Sugar
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt, kosher
  • 1 tsp Green peppercorn, finely ground
  • Charcoal
  • Mesquite wood chips, soaked in water for 20 min
  • Salt and Pepper

Instructions:

  1. Prep smoker, with about 10-12 lbs of charcoal and wood chips.
  2. Make glaze in small sauce pot. Mix all ingredients besides the chicken, and last 3 items on the list. Bring to a simmer and then cook on low for 5 min, stirring occasionally.
  3. Salt and pepper washed chickens, place on smoker and glaze every 30 min until chicken reached an internal temp of 165 F.

We paired this with a Brooklyn Lager 2, it was great!

Black Eyed Peas

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 3 hrs

Serves: 8-10

Ingredients:

  • 22 oz Black eyed peas,  like Melissa’s
  • 5 Thick slices of bacon, cut up into chunks
  • 2 Tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 Jalapeno, diced
  • 1 Garlic clove, minced
  • 1.5 TBS Better than Bullion Paste
  • 5 C. Water
  • 2 tsp. Cumin
  • 1 TBS. Pepper
  • 1 tsp. Paprika
  • 1 tsp. Garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. chili powder

Instructions:

Add all ingredients to crock pot and cook for 3 hrs on high.

Bread Recipes coming soon 🙂

Pan Seared Mahi Mahi with Mango Salsa

Standard

You’re going to love this quick and healthy meal!  Great for a weeknight or weekend!

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 8-10 min

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 4  4-6 oz Mahi Mahi filets (Wild)
  • 1 Mango, diced
  • 1/2 Red onion, diced finely
  • 1 Handful of cilantro, chopped finely
  • 1/2 Poblano pepper, diced finely
  • 1 tsp Vinegar
  • 1 Lime, juiced
  • 1/2 Lemon juiced (save other 1/2 for fish).
  • Pinch of red pepper
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Pinch of pepper
  • 1 TBS Olive oil
Instructions:
  1. Combine all ingredients except the fish and olive oil and mix well.
  2. Heat large skillet on medium high with olive oil, squeeze remaining half of lemon juice on filets and salt and pepper and place meat side down skin side up and cook for 4 min or so.  Flip and cook for 3-4 more minutes or until done.  Fish should have a nice sear on top.
  3. Spoon salsa evenly on all filets.
  4. Serve with your choice of veggies/sides.  I chose mashed sweet potatoes and a field green and watercress salad with baby bellas, blackberries, and cashews.  For the salad I made a simple dressing of red wine vinegar, a dash of oil, mustard, salt, pepper, and a pinch of sugar.
Enjoy!

Mahimahi on FoodistaMahimahi