Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Squash Puree + Turkey Meatballs

I have been dieting really diligently for about a month. I've lost 15+ pounds, and I'm definitely not giving up... but I'm getting to that point where I need some new takes on recipes because Lean Cuisines aren't cutting it.

I came up with this little gem by accident. I had the kids with me in the grocery store, and when I went to grab some spaghetti squash, I grabbed butternut squash instead. I've made butternut squash for Penn, but I don't think I've ever had it.

First of all, have you ever had fresh-roasted butternut squash out of the oven? Holy hoodoo. There's this crust on top that has no business tasting that good. So after I sat there and ate all of the crusts, I o I went ahead with the plan to make garlic parmesan spaghetti squash (substituting butternut). Y'all. It made roughly 2 gallons, and I ate every single bite. Not in one sitting. As far as you know.

Scraight out the oven

Chad's not into healthy-eating, which served me well this one time because I was able to nosh on this stuff for lunch and dinner for the entire week. Mmmmmm.

Garlic Parmesan Squash
2 spaghetti squash (or butternut squash!) - about 6 cups
2 shallots, finely chopped
2 1/2 TB unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1/4 cup grated parm
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut the butternut squash(es) in half, drizzle with EVOO, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place cut sides up on a baking sheet and bake until fork-tender (about 60-90 minutes).

While squash is cooling, melt butter over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic, cooking until softened and fragrant. If you're doing butternut, scoop squash out of shells and directly into pan - it'll come out already kind of mashed. If you're using spaghetti, fork it out into the pan (it comes out just like spaghetti!). Add parm and parsley, and combine. You really won't even need salt and pepper - it's so good!

I planned to make turkey meatballs in tomato sauce to top the garlic parmesan spaghetti squash, so I went ahead with that plan too.... and it tasted just as good on the butternut! Totally nailed it.

Turkey Meatballs & Sauce
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 TB tomato paste
2 cans (28 oz. each) crushed tomatoes
1 tsp dried oregano

1 lb. ground turkey
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/2 cup grated parm
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup milk
1 egg
3/4 tsp salt

For the meatballs: Combine the breadcrumbs, parm, parsley, and garlic in a bowl. Add the milk and incorporate. Add turkey, egg, salt, and pepper and mix with hands to combine. Roll into small balls. Heat the EVOO in a pan over medium to medium-high heat. You'll have to work in 2-3 batches. Cook meatballs until browned, turning often. Transfer to a plate until the sauce is ready for them.

Wipe out the pan used for meatballs (save on dishes!). Heat the EVOO over medium heat. Add minced garlic and allow to melt for about a minute. Add the tomato paste and cook for another minute. Stir in the tomatoes, oregano, salt and pepper. Bring to a light boil, then reduce to simmer. After about 20 minutes, add the meatballs into the sauce and allow to cook for another 10 minutes or so.

I actually didn't have any tomato paste or 2 big cans of tomatoes, so I just used what I had, which was 1 small can of tomato sauce and a small can of stewed tomatoes. Just as delish!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Penn at 8 months

Penn is 8 months old! This month, he...

- Weighs about 18 lbs
- Feeding schedule: Eats oatmeal + 6 oz. at 7:15am; 8 oz. at 11:15am; fruit + 6 oz. at 3:15pm; veggie at dinner and 8 oz. with oatmeal at 7:15pm.
- Sleeps anywhere from 6:45pm-7:30pm to about 6:30am
- Size 3 diapers (size 4 at night)
- Mainly 6-9 month clothes but is nearly 9-12 month
- Stopped taking Prevacid a few weeks ago. It seems to be going fine.
- LOVES to be outside
- Sits up by self, rolls over both ways, crawls, pulls up to standing, climbs, you name it
- Working on the sippy cup
- Has 2 teeth on bottom

He moved up to the 6-12 room at daycare a few weeks ago, and it's going well. He has more freedom to monkey around and lots of toys to play with. He's remains a very happy boy, but he still has bad ears and random fevers. He had an appointment with the ENT  yesterday, and Dr. Stevens said his ears were a 10 on a scale of mild to severe. He prescribed an antibiotic to clear up his ears enough for tube surgery next week.

Napping while Sissy plays on the playground

Just as I was getting out of my staff development meeting yesterday, the daycare called to tell me about a rash he had. Chad spotted something that morning, but it seemed like his typical heat rash. They said it had gotten worse and that he had a few spots on his fingers as well. Chad took him to the doctor this morning, and Dr. Pujari said it is hand, foot, and mouth disease. It sounds awful, but it's really just a viral rash that appears on different parts of the body. There's nothing you can do about it, and it's not painful. The worst part is if the sores get into their mouths because then it hurts to eat, which leads to dehydration. He only has a small patch on his ankle, one or two on his fingers, and very subtle ones around his mouth. The ones around his mouth already seem to be disappearing, and the patch on his ankle looks like it's drying up. I'm hoping we lick this thing really quickly because if it's not cleared by Monday, we'll have to reschedule the tubes.

First bobo

Despite having chronic ear infections, HFM disease, and not sleeping very well, he's still very sweet. We even took family photos last weekend! As we took photos, we discovered that he hates grass. Like... freaks out if it touches him. We had to get creative with the photos to avoid his feet touching any grass.

Taking family photos

Thumbs up!

We are hoping that getting tubes will help this little fella feel better. We'll keep you posted!


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