Thursday, August 29, 2013

I have garden, now what...

So for the past few years, Jeff and I have played around with a garden but I wouldn't have eaten anything tat came out of them. Our last house had the smallest front yard and no backyard at all. We tried to plant tomatoes and other produce that seemed easy to tend to but we were squeezing I between bushes by the front porch. Well this year, we have a real yard with real space for a real garden...this is produce I will eat! The problem now is that I have to figure out eat to do with all this produce??
I am going to include a few things that I have tried, some have recipes but of course I tweaked these recipes to make them more my creation.
1. Crockpot Stuffed Acorn Squash

2 acorn squash
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 lb sage breakfast sausage
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup chopped walnuts or almonds
1 large egg, beaten
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 apple cut in chunks
1/4 cup of water

*Tip microwave squash for 2 minutes to make cutting easier
Cut stems off the squash, and scoop out the seeds. Slice off a small piece from the bottom of each squash so they will sit level in the slow cooker.

In a skillet cook the sausage. Place in a bowl to cool. In the same pan add the oil and cook the onion and garlic until softened. Add the onion and garlic to the sausage, let cool. Mix in breadcrumbs, walnuts, egg, salt and pepper. Fill the squash with the sausage mixture.

Place the apple chunks and water in the bottom of the crockpot then, use cooking spray to coat a piece of heavy-duty foil that’s large enough to cover the whole inside of your slow cooker. Place the squash cut side up on the foil. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.

In an aluminum foil lined crockpot for 6 hrs
Cut in half and makes 4 servings 

2. Zucchini Lasagna
There is no real recipe for this, I basically used my favorite lasagna recipe that I have developed over the years and substituted slices of zucchini instead.
*One tip that I saw several places was that you should grill the zucchini before layering the lasagna.
*Personal tip, I used chicken sausage instead of beef for a lighter twist.

Slice the zucchini and salt to bring out the moisture. After about 10 min, pat dry with a paper towel.

Grill the zucchini on both sides, just enough to lightly brown. Lay cooked slices on paper towel to soak up any moisture.

 While the zucchini is resting on paper towels, cook the meat (or go meatless), then add your favorite red sauce.

Begin to layer just like you would with any lasagna.

Cover and cook for about 45 minutes, then uncover for about 15 more minutes or until the cheese begins to brown.

Looks just like my favorite lasagna!! I did not even miss the pasta!!

 3. Grilled Zucchini Pizza
No real recipe for this one either but it is super simple! I saw various versions of this on Pinterest but we just played around with the zucchini until it was what we liked.

Grill both sides, then pull of the grill to begin topping.

We topped it with regular pizza toppings like, pepperoni and mushroom, then we did a few with leftover BBQ chicken. 
Place back on the grill until the cheese melts.

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