Tag Archives: seasonal food

squishy experiment

mgreco-20081117-21

So tonight it was experimental squash canelloni for supper.  This baby’s not going to win any beauty contests any time soon.  I was going to cook a nice, innocuous tenderloin but forgot to take it out of the freezer so here we are. Plus, there were squash guts leftover from the lovely soup the mister the other night so this is all in the name of using what I’ve got.   I was determined to use only things we had on hand for this dish. I almost did it but had to run across to the convenience store across the street and buy a can of tomatoes.  It was very tasty but the texture was lacking…something.  Everything was just too the same.  I know that’s par for the canelloni course and maybe it’s my palette which is picky but I have a few thoughts on making a new, improved version.  Beyond that I was really happy with the milk sauce I chose to go with it.  It has been ages since I’ve had a milk pasta dish and this one really served its purpose in balancing flavours; it wasn’t so hearty that it overpowered the squash and wasn’t so meek that it needed a lot of help holding itself up.

Here’s the skinny on the filling:

2 cups of mashed, cooked squash

3/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled

1 red onion, minced

1/4 cup pesto

Mix everything together and stuff into canelloni noodles laying out them in one layer across the bottom of an 11×13 casserole dish as you go.  I used oven-ready in the interest of time and because I hate working with the cooked ones.  This recipe uses about one box.

The sauce:

2 cups tomato sauce of your choice

2 cups of milk

1/4 cup pesto

Mix all of that together then use it to completely cover the stuffed canellonis in the casserole dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes then top with slices of provolone, mozzarella or havarti and cook for another 30 minutes or until the noodles are tender.

So I would totally make this again but, instead of making a squishy squash filling I would transfer a lot of the flavour elements, like the feta and more pesto, to the sauce and use uncooked squash spears inside the noodles.  This would eleminate a lot of the mess involved in stuffing them and help give the dish a little more textural backbone.

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Filed under domestics, Recipes, Things stuffed with things, Vegetarian Recipes

roasted capon with perfect fall stuffing

We have a lovely organic poultry vendor at our local farmer’s market from whom I (and the rest) get tremendously good deals on his capons (2 for $40 – can’t beat that) so I’ve usually got a couple in the freezer at any given time.  I was feeling like we needed a toasty, warm, autumnal meal this weekend so here’s what I made:

I tend to prefer dryer bread for stuffing than the fresh sesame bread I ended up using just because it keeps it from getting soggy.  To it I added 2 diced macintosh apples, which are about two weeks out of season here and are getting a little softer as a result.  This makes them perfect for cooking in this manner and add a little moisture to the stuffing.  I also tossed in some chopped proscuitto, ground sage (can’t WAIT until the stuff my Megan provided is ready for rubbing), ground nutmeg,  oregano and lemon juice.  Capons don’t need a lot of help in the flavour, fat or moisture department so I wanted a lot of that to come infused through the stuffing, rather than treating the meat itself but I did pour the better parts of the remnants of a bottle of white zinfandel from last night’s wine night (donated by a well-meaning guest rather tragically to a group of red snobs) into the pan to help it out a little.  The results were great.  The proscuitto gave it a low smokey flavour, the sage came through in a subtle tone, that apples lent their juices to getting everyone to make friends and the lemon juice and wine perked things up nicely.  We ate our chicken and stuffing with mashed potatoes and yams, fresh green beans, & beats in horseradish butter.  It was lovely.

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