Oven-Fried Green Beans with Chipotle Aioli

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A while back, I spent the weekend in northern VT with my SO, who is finishing his degree in the coldest place on the planet.  I mean, it’s beautiful, and it’s a great school, etc etc etc, but there’s Miami, Hawaii, Cali… what’s wrong with those?  All joking aside, it’s a lovely time, mainly because we pig out.  That’s really all I do on the weekend, but we do it like we are trying to win a prize.  This particular weekend, we went to a spectacular dive to shoot pool, and of course needed to order every appetizer they have on the menu.

And that’s when they entered my life:  Green Bean Fries.

Come on.

I’ve had (and made) fries of all sorts:  carrot, sweet potato, you name it.  But beans?  As fries?  Seriously?  I was skeptical.  And wrong.  These things are so addictive!  Dangerous.  Don’t think that you deserve a pat on the back for choosing green beans on the menu:  these battered-and-deep-fried bunches of goodness are death.  The best part had to be the dipping sauce:  they had this chipotle mayo that was so heavy and spicy and oh oh oh my mouth is literally watering right now.

So, being a formerly extremely heavy gal, I had to figure out how to harness their superpower for good.  I give you: the oven-fried green beans.  Their only breading is parm cheese, so if you’re carb-contious you’re still safe.  And the sauce?  Yup, I got that for you too.  My boo gave it a “hey, when are you making that sauce again?” approval, so you know it’s a win.  Enjoy!


 

Materials:

  •  2 mixing bowls (one can be small)
  • fork
  • non-stick pan
  • cooking spray

Ingredients:

For the green beans:

  • fresh green beans (I didn’t measure… I just grab about 2-3 handfuls)
  • 1 egg
  • minced garlic
  • Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the chipotle aioli:

  • 3T mayo (I use olive oil-based)
  • 1T lemon juice
  • 1/2 to 1T smoked paprika

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wash and snap the ends off the green beans.  Pat dry.IMG_6939
  3. In a bowl, mix egg, garlic, salt, and pepper with a fork (like you’re making scrambled eggs).IMG_6942
  4. Dip green beans in egg mixture, shaking off the excess egg.  Place in a non-stick pan (be sure to spray it first).IMG_6943
  5. Coat beans with Parmesan cheese.IMG_6944
  6. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown.FullSizeRender
  7. While the beans are baking, mix the mayo, lemon juice, and paprika in a small bowl; IMG_7012set aside.IMG_7013
  8. Serve beans hot with the aioli.  Enjoy!FullSizeRender (1)

 

Oven-Fried Green Beans with Chipotle Aioli

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

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Materials:

  •  2 mixing bowls (one can be small)
  • fork
  • non-stick pan
  • cooking spray

Ingredients:

For the green beans:

  • fresh green beans (I didn’t measure… I just grab about 2-3 handfuls)
  • 1 egg
  • minced garlic
  • Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the chipotle aioli:

  • 3T mayo (I use olive oil-based)
  • 1T lemon juice
  • 1/2 to 1T smoked paprika

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Wash and snap the ends off the green beans.  Pat dry.
  3. In a bowl, mix egg, garlic, salt, and pepper with a fork (like you’re making scrambled eggs).
  4. Dip green beans in egg mixture, shaking off the excess egg.  Place in a non-stick pan (be sure to spray it first).
  5. Coat beans with Parmesan cheese.
  6. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown.
  7. While the beans are baking, mix the mayo, lemon juice, and paprika in a small bowl; set aside.
  8. Serve beans hot with the aioli.  Enjoy!

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Parmesan Squash Ribbons

It’s times like this when I wonder why. WHY. Why am I living up north?  I mean seriously, who am I kidding with this bitter-cold misery?

But I like the seasons, I say.  We all say to justify this crazy thing called winter.  Let me tell you something.  I don’t ski or snowboard Snow-shoeing is out of the question and ice-skating is not for me.  I would be all up in the curling business if they brought that to Boston, but alas, we aren’t with it yet.

Do you want to know what my winter sport is?  It’s bundling up with layers upon layers until every inch of skin is covered thrice over, finding the shortest distance to my destination, and making it there without slipping on ice.  I could go pro.

I say all of this, but it’s not all dismal.  Winter is beautiful, and better yet, it’s a chance to cook hot foods 🙂  Soups, stews, boils, bakes… I love it all.  One of my favorite new cooking ventures that warmed my insides both physically and emotionally ironically featured a an out-of-season star:  the summer squash.  Okay, before you rain hate for me buying out of season, let me be clear:  I don’t care.  I buy what I want.  You should too.

So, this dish.  Oh, this dish.  Full disclosure, I ate the entire pot, by myself.  It was that good.  AND, so easy AND FUN to make, that I am actually excited to make it again 🙂  Enjoy, and stay warm!FullSizeRender_1


 

Materials:

  • mixing bowl
  • veggie peeler (horizontal)
  • knife and cutting board
  • large pot
  • spoon

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • two large summer squash
  • 1/4 c Parmesan cheese
  • minced garlic to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Chop onion and set aside.
  2. Heat a small amount of oil (about a tablespoon) in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  3. Place onion into pot, stirring occasionally. IMG_6750
  4. While onion is cooking, create thin ribbons out of your squash by peeling long strands the  length of your squash.  You may need to rotate around your squash.IMG_6748FullSizeRender_2
  5. Place ribbons and garlic into pot and stir.  Cook for about 5 minutes, or until squash is tender.  NOTE:  ADD WATER TO POT IF NEEDED (about 1/4 c).IMG_6751
  6. Remove from heat.  Add parmesan cheese, alt and pepper to taste and stir.IMG_6752
  7. Serve with parmesan cheese.  Enjoy!IMG_6754

 


 

Parmesan Squash Ribbons

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Materials:

  • mixing bowl
  • veggie peeler (horizontal)
  • knife and cutting board
  • large pot
  • spoon

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • two large summer squash
  • 1/4 c Parmesan cheese
  • minced garlic to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Chop onion and set aside.
  2. Heat a small amount of oil (about a tablespoon) in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  3. Place onion into pot, stirring occasionally.
  4. While onion is cooking, create thin ribbons out of your squash by peeling long strands the  length of your squash.  You may need to rotate around your squash.
  5. Place ribbons and garlic into pot and stir.  Cook for about 5 minutes, or until squash is tender.  NOTE:  ADD WATER TO POT IF NEEDED (about 1/4 c).
  6. Remove from heat.  Add parmesan cheese, alt and pepper to taste and stir.

White Cheddar Cran Ball

 

Oh, hi.  It’s me.  I hope you had an epically fantastic holiday!  I did, which is partly why I am just now writing, two weeks later.  Whomp whomp.

I spent several bliss-filled days with my two 10-ish-year-old nephews.  and my 8-month old niece. I love spending time with them so much, and get so depressed when I have to drive back to Boston, far, far away from them.  My niece is without a doubt the most adorable baby on the planet, and happens to be the heaviest thing I’ve held since Nam.  Seriously, after Day One of my visit, my biceps were sore.  Why is it that rolls of fat on my niece’s thighs are adorbs, but not so much on my 30-year-old legs?  Oh, the humanity. Continue reading

Caprese Salad Skewers

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How was your Thanksgiving?  I know, you’re over it, right?  That was so last week.  Well, I’ve been completely swamped, and sick, and am finally starting to catch up with y’all.  So, I hope it was wonderful, and full of family drama, arguing over the Macy’s parade vs the football game, and of course a food-induced coma.   Or, maybe you skipped all of the nonsense to hit the stores!  I mean, it’s only a matter of time before our Thanksgiving day will be completely replaced by Brown Thursday, or whatever ridiculous name they come up with.  You know what I’m thankful for?  Amazon prime.   Continue reading

Quinoa Bowl with Goat Cheese and Avocado

IT’S HERE.  THIRTY.  3-0.

the jury is still out on how I feel about leaving my 20’s, but I’m working overtime to stay positive.  Anyway, on my birthday last year, I unveiled the list I created several years ago entitled, “To Do by 30!”  Let’s take a gander once more:   Continue reading

Game Day Treats: Cleaned Up Stuffed Mushrooms

It’s been so summery outside, it’s hard to remember that it’s officially football season!  Of course, how could we think of anything else but football with the Tom Brady Deflategate on every freakin channel?  Let me tell you something that I’m sure I’ve already mentioned:  the suffix “-gate” should not be widely-used term for any scandal that comes to light.  Watergate was the name of the hotel.  That’s where the -“gate” name comes from:  so going by that logic, the scandal had to be about water, right?

People are so dumb it hurts.

Speaking of being hurt, I’m so glad it’s football season again.  I love me some football.  And I love being in a city that is obsessed with sports!  I don’t cheer for any of the teams here, but I appreciate the shared sentiment for the sport 🙂   And of course, maybe one of the best parts of Sunday are the endless bounds of finger foods.  Winning.
Mushrooms: love them or hate them. I think they are a bonus in a dish, but others can barely be in the same room as them. Then, you stuff them and all of a sudden they are deemed delicious by all. Hmm…
Anyway, every recipe I’ve read uses cream cheese, which totally flabbergasts me. Cream cheese?  Really?  That grosses me out, and I can’t express why.  I’ve been making my simple, incredible recipe for years, and I’ve never thought of using cream cheese. My recipe is healthy, but packs a punch of strong, hearty flavors. It’s a huge crowd-pleaser, and doesn’t weigh you down, so you have room for more chicken wings and pizza for the night games.

Materials:

  • oven-proof dish
  • cooking spray
  • food processor
  • spoon

Ingredients:

  • 10-12 baby portabella mushrooms
  • 1/4 c sun-dried tomatoes (I prefer packed in oil)
  • 1/4 c breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 c Parmesan cheese
  • black pepper to taste
  • splash of red wine vinegar (optional)
  • dried parsley (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Remove stems from mushrooms, and place the stems in the food processor.  DO NOT throw the stems away!
  3. Spray dish with cooking spray, and place mushroom caps, face up, in the dish.
  4. Place all other ingredients in the food processor.  Pulse until well-blended.  You’re looking for a thick, gritty, wet sand consistency.IMG_5769
  5. Spoon mixture into mushroom caps.FullSizeRender (1)
  6. Bake for about 10 minutes.
  7. Enjoy!image1

Cleaned Up Stuffed Mushrooms

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Materials:

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  • oven-proof dish
  • cooking spray
  • food processor
  • spoon

Ingredients:

  • 10-12 baby portabella mushrooms
  • 1/4 c sun-dried tomatoes (I prefer packed in oil)
  • 1/4 c breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 c Parmesan cheese
  • black pepper to taste
  • splash of red wine vinegar (optional)
  • dried parsley (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Remove stems from mushrooms, and place the stems in the food processor.  DO NOT throw the stems away!
  3. Spray dish with cooking spray, and place mushroom caps, face up, in the dish.
  4. Place all other ingredients in the food processor.  Pulse until well-blended.  You’re looking for a thick, gritty, wet sand consistency.
  5. Spoon mixture into mushroom caps.
  6. Bake for about 10 minutes.
  7. Enjoy!

Pesto Pasta Salad

Hey, so if the weather could make up its mind and decide what it’s doing, and what general temperature it wants to be, that would be really helpful.  Just thinking about altering my wardrobe AGAIN  exhausts me.  I have a knuckle hair-sized closet, so I don’t exactly have the luxury to keep multi-seasonal outfits around in abundance.  Summer, are you still here or not?

I think the roller-coaster weather is a culprit for the disgusting slew of cold viruses going around.  Yes, I have ANOTHER #*$%&% cold.  This time, I’m stuffy, coughy, and have completely lost my voice, which some people are thankful for.  Why is it, whenever you come down with something, everyone’s first reaction is to tell you, Oh yeah, something’s been going around.  Like that’s supposed to comfort you?  Oh, you have lupus?  Yeah, I hear that’s been going around.

Anyway, I thought of what comfort food I want, and I kept going back to pasta salad.  My appetite is weird anyway when I’m sick, but I could always eat a vat of pasta salad, and it’ll never be enough.  This one I made over the summer way awesome, fresh, and wholesome…. and since summer is still trying to sneak in a few extra days, there’s still plenty of time to enjoy this one.

Materials:

  • pot with lid (for cooking pasta)
  • large bowl
  • cutting board and knife

Ingredients:

  • 2 c whole wheat pasta (I used penne)
  • 3T prepared pesto sauce
  • 1/4 c fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 1 can tomatoes, drained

Directions:

  1. Prepare pasta according to package directions (about 8-10 minutes).  Drain and place in a large bowl.  IMG_5261
  2. Toss pasta with pesto sauce.  Set aside.IMG_5262
  3. Dice cheese into bite-size cubes.FullSizeRender
  4. Toss cheese and tomatoes into pasta.  FullSizeRenderMix well before serving.
  5. Enjoy!FullSizeRender

Pesto Pasta Salad

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Materials:

  • pot with lid (for cooking pasta)
  • large bowl
  • cutting board and knife

Ingredients:

  • 2 c whole wheat pasta (I used penne)
  • 3T prepared pesto sauce
  • 1/4 c fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 1 can tomatoes, drained

Directions:

  1. Prepare pasta according to package directions (about 8-10 minutes).  Drain and place in a large bowl.
  2. Toss pasta with pesto sauce.  Set aside.
  3. Dice cheese into bite-size cubes.
  4. Toss cheese and tomatoes into pasta.  Mix well before serving.
  5. Enjoy!