A Few of my Favorite Things

I don’t like to play favorites, but I think this…

may be my favorite stuffed vegetable so far this year. I say so far because I know there will be more.

And I mean…they’re so handy! Make them on a night you’ve got a little bit of time, and the other half is easy (and delicious) leftovers for the next night – which, if you’re like me, you’re short on time!

Kale, Fig and Bulghur Stuffed Butternut Squash

  • 1 butternut squash, halved and de-seeded
  • 1 T. basil oil (or EVOO)
  • splash of water
  • 7-8 large kale leaves
  • 1/4 of a red pepper, diced
  • 2 T. diced red onion
  • 2 dried figs, chopped
  • 1/2 c. (dry measure) bulghur wheat, prepared as instructed
  • 2 servings of seitan
  • 1 T. dijon mustard
  • 1/2 T. maple syrup
  • 1 T. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 T. water
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • salt, to taste
  • chopped walnuts or pecans

Place the  squash face-down in a baking pan, and pour water in the pan so it comes up the sides of the squash about an inch. Bake in a 375* oven for about an hour, or until easily punctured by a fork or knife.

Mix the mustard, syrup, vinegar, and water in a small dish, set aside.

Heat the oil and water in a large saute pan, and add in the kale, pepper and onion. Cover, stirring occasionally, until the kale is cooked down and bright green. Add in the chopped figs, cooked bulghur and seitan, and pour over the dressing.Stir thoroughly and Lower heat.

When the squash is ready, scoop out some of the inside, leaving about a 1/2″ around for the shell. Cut what you’ve scooped out into bite-sized pieces and add to the pan.

Stuff the squashies and top with chopped walnuts or pecans!

Okay, so I forgot the nuts tonight. Still delish!

I don’t like to play favorites…but I think this lunch combination that I had today might just be a new one!

I have a lot of the rosemary sauce from when I made the pierogies left, and the only thing I could think to use it for was a sandwich. I realllly, really wasn’t sure how I’d like it – I haven’t ever cooked with rosemary before, so I don’t know what it goes well with, really. I’ve only been told it goes well with sweet potato!

This was a sandwich with the rosemary sauce, seitan (that I’d quickly pan-fried in a touch of basil oil) red onion, tomato slices, and roasted reds on some of that delicious honey-oat whole wheat bread.

This tasted just like thanksgiving! It was beyond delicious. I didn’t know what on earth it was that made me think of thanksgiving so much, but then it hit me : It tasted just like stuffing! Really, really good stuffing. The sausage-y ness from the seitan, the rosemary in the sauce, the onion, the perfect fresh, moist, chewy bread – I loved it! I mean, I don’t like to play favorites, but…

…this bread recipe might be it 😉 Simply delicious – no frills, but it still does the job and then some.

I don’t like to play favorites, but I’ve already told you guys about my love for…

plums! One of my favorite fruits, mayhaps? This one was particularly prune-y looking. I am glad that their dried name has been changed to dried plums rather than prunes. I’m all for a dried plum, but prune makes me cringe a little!

I don’t like to play favorites, but…

I do love these sweet ‘tater cookies! I don’t mean to tease you all and hold the recipe captive…I’ll get around to it!

I don’t like to play favorites, but…

…this is one of them, when it comes to snacking! I’ll take some of those lovely organic Medjool dates stuffed with nuts, or an organic dried fig over a YooHoo and oreos anyday 😉

I don’t like to play favorites, but…

…this burnt ginger birdseed bar probably isn’t one of them 😛

Ginger Birdseed Bars? Win.

Overbaking? Well, I don’t consider it a fail, but I know what they could be!

I don’t like to play favorites, but I totally am…

…because nothing can beat this overnight oats combo. I tried encouraging myself to get out of this overnight oats what-I-refuse-to-call-a-rut, but when I thought of the sweet, seedy figs mixed in with cinnamony, banana-y oats, I simply couldn’t.

You’ve gotta give me some credit, though – I make my PB sauce with kefir now! Kefir is so strange!! If I didn’t know any better, I’d be certain it was spoiled. Why are there so many fermented things in the health industry?! Tempeh, kombucha, kefir – it’s mad! haha

I bought the unsweetened plain kind, and while you wouldn’t see me pouring it over cereal or eating it by the spoon- or sip-ful, it makes for a wonderful peanut butter sauce! Although, to make you even more proud – I switched it up to sunflower butter sauce this morning 😉

Furthermore – I don’t like to play favorites, but this weather is not it!

Kefir – love it or hate it?

What’s your current favorite “thing”?

P.S. If (and only if!) you liked my pierogi post/recipe, you could mayyyybe think about clicking here to vote for it on PFB 😀


Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, health, healthy living, lunch, oatmeal, recipe

28 responses to “A Few of my Favorite Things

  1. Loove kefir! And your squash recipe looks amaazing.. can’t wait for the sweet potato cookie recipe!! Have you posted your exact overnight oats recipe? 🙂

  2. I love the look of your stuffed veggies! They look so tasty! I have never tried Kefir, but I am intrigued. It has dairy in it so unless I get coconut…I guess there will be more for you. I am guessing the fermentation is all the good bacteria! Ya gotta love the stuff for your gut. You know I am still lovin’ on the peanut flour. Total addiction!

  3. I’ve never tried kefir! I always see it in the store.. but I always go for my greek yogurt instead 🙂
    I’ve been meaning to tell you – you’ve made converted me to the world of loving figs! I’ve been having dried figs in my oatmeal for days now, and I can’t get enough! Thanks 🙂

    Current favourites? Well.. dried figs (obviously from above :P), and almond butter & honey on rye bread. Yum!

    ❤ Tat

  4. I love kefir! If I remember correctly, fermented foods are so healthy because they contain tons of those ‘good’ bacteria, which improve your immune system and digestion among other things.

    By the way that butternut squash looks amazing!

  5. I love stuffed squash too! It’s like they’re hollow inside just to be filled with yummy goodness. Your combo looks delicious.

    Current favorite thing = chocolate avocado pudding, which is surprisingly tasty!

  6. The squash looks amazing – thanks for posting the recipe!!!!! Love the list of your favorite things!!!! Right now i am loving whole wheat sandwiches with fresh tomatoes, basil roasted peppers and cheese!!!! Trying to get my fill of tomatoes before the fall is over!!!!
    Just voted for you on Foodbuzz challenge #2 – good luck!!!!! Im looking forward to challenge #3 and what you have in store for us!!!!
    P.S. check your e-mail when you get time!!!

  7. I’m definitely on the kefir train – it’s also pretty simple to make at home. Fermentation is my excuse to play made scientist in the kitchen 🙂
    That pepper looks pretty phenomenal, too 🙂

  8. Ahhh thank yoU! My new “thing” = pumpkin oats & kabocha squash!

  9. My current favorite thing is roasted squash wedges. I find that unless it’s a kabocha squash, butternut and acorn just don’t taste great baked whole anymore, but when I can get them crispy on the outsides and moist and chewy on the insides they’re perfect.

    You’re really tempting me to go out and buy some bulgur too… Oooh, btw, I learned in my Foods class that bulgur is actually different from cracked wheat and not 100% whole grain! But Bob’s Redmill says theirs is 100% and then the ingredients list says “cracked wheat” which then makes sense because lots of people use the terms interchangeably. Actual bulgur has a portion of the bran removed.

    *Sigh* The silly, and probably useless, things I learn in class… 😛

  10. The hardest question ever!!!! But I’d say…. quinoa??? wait… eggs… wait,,,figs…?
    Love kefir.
    That’s the bomb…’Kale, Fig and Bulghur Stuffed Butternut Squash’ even though haven’t had bulahur yet.

  11. teenagehealthfreak

    i like keifer..my cousin has her own grains!! so i’ve tried the reallly authentic stuff! …it’s definatly different. a little clumpy when you make it yourself..but i drink a glass every morning..and my dad gets some of the whey!! (ha ha) your sammie does sound awesome! and OMG…that squash..looks SOOO much like a sweet potato!!! I reallly want to try those..i planted some..i hope they grow!! 🙂

  12. love it…acorn squash is up there too I love that it is a bit more savory. I agree they are the best for stuffing. Peppers have nothing on squash 🙂

  13. I used bulgur just the other night to stuff peppers 😀 I love that stuff! Especially when it’s seasoned right, which, it seems, you’ve perfected! I can practically smell that squash 🙂

    As for kefir….. ehhhhhhhhh….. I’m not so sure
    I mean I know how good it is for you, and I swear if I drink some at night my skin is pretty the next day ( I SWEARRRRR BY IT!)
    But the taste is so difficult to get used to!
    Oh well, people pluck their eyebrows in the name of beauty so why not plug your nose and throw back some kefir?

  14. Kefiir! I remember hearing about that guy a looong time ago, and never knew it was a milk-like substance ’till about a month ago. Hah, silly me thought it was some type of grain, how clever. That stuffed squash looks so delicious, really, really delicious looking actually. I’m a tad scarred from some awful stuffed eggplant that I over-baked a few days ago, but hopefully I’ll be recovered by next week so I can tackle some more stuffed delights.

    Take care, amazing eater friend!

  15. I’ve never tried kefir — I can’t find any that I can have — but I don’t think I would… I’m not a big “dairy” person!! My mom just poured out spoiled milk, and I told her that she could have just let it turn into cottage cheese. She said that there WERE curds in there already. That’s when I hung up the phone. :p

    Current favorite thing: Maranatha sunflower seed butter!!

    ❤ ❤

  16. too bad I already consumed the majority of my butternut squash cause that looks and sounds amazing lady…maybe ill try it with my acorn squash! Oh, gotta try your birdseed bars…they look awesome always.

    Current fave thing…pumpkin…still

    And only have tried the coconut milk kefir but i liked it! like a runny greek yogurt kinda…

  17. Of course I will vote for you! How could I not? I want some of those tater cookies so badly…they look sweet, moist and wonderfully delicious. I would have a hard time stopping at one! As for favorites…I’ve been loving Brussels Sprouts doused in lemon juice, nutritional yeast and galic. They are like candy to me!

  18. I love kefir. It is a little too runny for a yogurt lover but I think it tastes great. Kefir + Russian cookies = Yum!

    There are probably more fermented products in the food industry than you can imagine. Without fermentation you can’t have bread, pickles, wine, beer, any type of yogurt, cheese, soy sauce… You consume fermented things everyday. You just don’t notice it because the taste is familiar to you.

    I’m not sure I have a current favorite thing but if I have to choose something I have been eating more often recently it will be oatmeal cookies and crackers. I can’t get enough oatmeal.

  19. I voted for you 😀
    Aahahah, that sauce balsamic/mustard/maple thing for the squash sounds so unbelievably delicious – you’re inspiring me! I want to cook now 😀
    I like kefir! Before I went vegan I managed to try one (and only one!) bottle – very nice 🙂 Mould is where it’s at nowadays…

  20. Love fermented things, yum. That tangy taste is just something you can’t really get from anything else…which is maybe why I’m so in love with putting yoghurt in my dips and dressings now that I’ve tried your carrot dip? I seriously would not have thought of that myself. ALL the food pics in this post…if I could order that from somewhere, I would get it. Provided I could eat it, of course, which I can’t, but maybe in some future…it looks great. Oh, but wait – I once bought a jar of lacto-fermented veggies (I think they were called) totally expensive, but I thought, if it helps the tummy, bring it on. The smell was awful! Yuk! I managed to eat a bit of it a couple of times, but it wasn’t even delicious! Haha, major fail…

    And I voted for you in the second foodbuzz challenge, and I’m crossing my fingers 🙂

  21. Ahhh yes I am so making that squash recipe for Wednesday night dinner! Except I don’t have butternut right now, so I’m going to try it with kabocha. And I don’t have seitan, so I might use chickpeas for my protein. I am so excited to try it! 😀

    A sandwich that tastes like Thanksgiving stuffing sounds heavenly. My dad’s stuffing is my one exception to not eating pork/sausages. It is SO good that I don’t even care haha. Also, rosemary tastes fabulous with balsamic, goat cheese and grilled veggies if you’re looking for future ideas.

    I’ve never tried kefir, but I’ve always been really curious about it. Does it just taste like liquid yogurt?

  22. I can’t get enough of almond butter lately, or any nut butter for that matter!
    I can eat kefir in smoothies, but for yogurt messes, I prefer plain thick yogurt 🙂

  23. Mo

    I love you often have these… “themes”, I guess, in your posts. I’m not organized enough for that. 😛

    I’ve never tried kefir, and I don’t really have an interest in it. I’ve never really liked dairy, especially drinking milk, so thinking about drinking kefir makes me a little queasy! Although it’s kind of a shame since I’m aware of its health benefits.

    My current favorite thing? Uhhh. Uhhh. Uhm. Uh. Probably pumpkin, actually. 😉 Speaking of which – I’m finally mailing you more date syrup today! It has a couple other little thingies in there since I felt bad. Oh, and don’t laugh too much at how much tape I used all over. I was making sure there was no possible way I could send you another box of disaster!

  24. That bread sounds so good! Too bad that’s one of the things I fail miserably at.. bread baking.
    I wouldn’t mind being stuck in an overnight oats rut.. especially if my overnight oats looked like yours! Cause I’m sure they taste amazing.. just have a feeling 😉

  25. What a fun post! And yea, all those things look like they could rank up there with my favorites too. 🙂

  26. Brown paper packages tied up with strings…
    Very cute post! And I’m going to just have to come clean and say my favorite thing these days are tater tots. Yup.

  27. Pingback: Birthday, (Pan)cakes and Other Tales « Smithereens

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