Truffle Oil Butternut Squash, Broccoli and Black Bean Tortilla Lasagna

I think I’m on a roll. Not to brag, but this little creation…jackpot.

As I sit here typing this, I’m a few margaritas into the start of an amazing three day birthday celebration for both my sister Brooke and me. Her birthday is the 22nd (“today” by the time this post is published) and mine is the 24th (Friday). I drove to Orlando to be with her and my grandparents for a few days this week since I have some time off between jobs.

Best decision ever.

Brooke completes me. Yes, I have a husband who truly is my better half. But the bond between sisters cannot be compared to anything else. Being able to celebrate our birthdays basically back-to-back is the best. We are soaking in all of the short time we have together, so I’m going to wrap this up fairly quickly today. 
These layers you see? They are layers of soft flour tortilla, melty Colby-jack cheese, and wholesome veggies roasted in sinful white truffle oil. 

Are you sold yet? Maybe I should mention this meal is “man approved’ too. Does that help? One of my biggest challenges in the kitchen is making something both Greg and I will enjoy. Sometimes that means getting extra creative in the kitchen to use what we have on hand without giving into the temptation of a frozen pizza just because anything else is too complicated. But this? Yes! Even Greg loved it. Maybe I should also mention I’m putting the word “love” in Greg’s mouth. He doesn’t often say he loves something, so I may be exaggerating. BUT! He did go back for seconds and help himself to leftovers the next day without me needing to ask. That, my friend, is saying a lot. 

If this vegetable and bean combination wasn’t delicious enough on its own, you can be sure the white truffle oil will make all the difference. I have never cooked with the heavenly substance before, but knew how amazing it is thanks to the life changing mac and cheese. It takes the meal to another level and will satisfy any appetite. Birthday, non-birthday, weekday, weekend…whatever day it may be, the day calls for a vegetables roasted in truffle oil then layered in cheese and tortillas. 
Can I get an “Amen!”?

Truffle Oil Butternut Squash, Broccoli and Black Bean Tortilla Lasagna

Makes 4-6 servings

6 small tortillas, cut in half and divided
1 medium butternut squash – peeled, seeded and diced (about 3 cups)
3 cups broccoli florets
1 teaspoon white truffle oil
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon sage
1/2 teaspoon rosemary
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup mined jalapeno
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
5 ounces shredded Colby jack cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray 9×9 inch dish with nonstick spray and set aside. Also line a cookie sheet with foil and set aside.
2. In a medium bowl, combine diced butternut squash, broccoli, truffle oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, pepper, sage and rosemary. Stir until all ingredients are well distributed. Add this mixture to the foil-lined cookie sheet, cover with another sheet of foil, and bake for about 35-40 minutes, or until vegetables become lightly browned. Remove from heat. Turn oven temperature down to 350 degrees.
3. While veggies are cooking, combine black beans, jalapeno, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and cayenne pepper in a small-medium bowl. When veggies are finished roasting, combine them with the black bean mixture in a medium bowl. Stir well.
4. Spread out six of the tortilla halves evenly on the bottom of the 9×9 inch pan. Sprinkle about 1/3 of the shredded cheese on top. Add half of the butternut squash/broccoli/black bean mixture. Layer the remaining six tortilla halves on top of that, followed by 1/3 of the cheese, the rest of the vegetable mixture, and finally the last of the cheese. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for about five minutes. Slice in squares and serve hot.


July Blog-A-Day #28: Super Green Quinoa Bowl for One

Monday. The start of a new week.  This means it’s time to get back to a regular schedule and a restocked kitchen. Put the two together and I have myself an easy, delicious and nutritious weeknight meal. Weekends lend themselves to increased eating out, which typically means less balanced/healthy meals. Weeknights on the other hand look more like this. Lots of veggies, especially greens, produce, and whole grains. And just because it’s healthy doesn’t mean it’s not just as satisfying as those indulgent weekend meals. In fact, it’s usually even better. 
Super Green Quinoa Bowl for One
Makes 1 serving
1/4 cup dry quinoa
1/4 white or yellow onion, sliced
1/2 cup broccoli florets, chopped
1/4 cup vegetable broth
3 cups raw spinach
1/4 avocado, diced
1/4 cup black beans, cooked
2 tablespoons crumbled goat cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1. Cook quinoa according to package directions.
2. Meanwhile, heat medium skillet over medium heat. When hot, add onion and broccoli. Cook for about 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once vegetables are evenly browned, turn heat to low and add vegetable broth. Immediately add spinach to skillet and toss. Cook about 1-2 more minutes and turn off heat. Add salt, cayenne pepper and oregano. Toss to evenly distribute.
3. Add quinoa, cooked vegetables, avocado, black beans and goat cheese to a bowl and serve immediately. Top with hot sauce if desired. 

Spicy Trees

No. It’s not what your thinking. Unless you still have the mind of a little kid and call broccoli “trees”.

You might have figured out already that I love sales. When it comes to grocery shopping, it is rare that I buy something not on sale. When I ran to the store to pick up food for dinner, I had broccoli in mind. But the frozen kind. When I saw that these fresh green broccoli heads were cheaper than the frozen variety, I knew it was meant to be. 
I was watching the Food Network show “The Best Thing I Ever Ate” awhile back and one lady talked about spicy broccoli. I like broccoli. I like spicy. And two rights make an extra-right. Right? 
I’ve had the idea in my head ever since and finally I would get to make it for myself. Well, not just myself, but Greg, Brooke and my mom. 
So fresh and so green, green. Ok, I’m a loser. 

I never thought I would say this, but I love vegetables. I even had a veggie sandwich for lunch. I might just turn into a vegetable. Wait….that doesn’t sound good. I take that back.
From what I remember seeing on the show about spicy broccoli, there were many more ingredients than this recipe required. For the sake of time, I stuck with the first recipe I found. It turned out to be much simpler than I was expecting, but also not quite as spicy as I would have liked.

The broccoli was only a small part of this family dinner though. I also made marinated chicken breasts. I would share the recipe for that, but honestly I have no idea what I did. I had about ten minutes to spare during my lunch break today and threw something together. It was something like olive oil, soy sauce, fresh garlic, onion, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Greg made some buttermilk mashed potatoes too. I was a bit nervous letting him take over, but they turned out great. 
The best part of finishing a homemade dinner like that though?
Thinking about this for dessert the entire time…
Don’t worry, I didn’t make this. My mom and Brooke picked this up today from Cupcake. It was every bit as good as it looks. Maybe you can’t tell, but this cupcake is GIANT. We all had big slices and there is still almost half left over. Which is nice, because I might need more in about….eh, fifteen minutes?
Spicy Broccoli
(Adapted from Food Network)
Makes 4 servings
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
3 small broccoli heads, cut into florets
1/4 cup water
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat
2. Add crushed red pepper flakes and stir 
3. Add broccoli florets and mix to coat with oil and pepper flakes
4. Saute broccoli over medium heat for about 5-6 minutes, or until it begins to brown
5. Add salt and pepper as desired. Pour water into skillet, stir, and cover. 
6. Turn heat to low and steam for about 1-2 minutes
7. Remove from heat and serve while still hot