Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Here I Go Again

Have you ever been stalked by a song?  This happens to me from time to time.  A few years back it was that Partridge Family song I Think I Love You.  It just about drove me nuts, I couldn't stand that song.   Well, now it is Whitesnake's Here I Go Again which I actually like.  Don't laugh, I know that 80's hair metal can seem a bit cheesy now.  But that's my time period so I sort of like the stuff and I'm not too cool to admit it.  Anyway, I've been hearing this song quite a bit lately and not on Gen X radio (the 80s-90s station).  But places like the grocery store, clothing boutiques in abandoned strip malls and most recently in The Fighter (which I suggest you run right out and  Heck, it all started when (for some odd reason) I had a dream with David Coverdale in it.  He was dancing around and doing cartwheels a' la Tawny Kitaen from their video.  It's goofy but that's the best part about dreams.  So, that song is sort of my theme song at the moment, I admit that it pretty much dominates my playlist.

This isn't the first time I've blogged recipes.  Back when I first tried Paleo I had a little blog that I posted some of my recipes on.  It went through a couple of makeovers and name changes.  Looking back on it I probably wasn't very well suited for keeping up a food blog.  I wasn't really sure of what I was doing and I wasn't very good at being Paleo.  I think that's why I kept changing it and eventually doing away with it.  I've got a little more experience now in the kitchen, I'm a little smarter about shopping and I do a better job of preparing food for one and wasting less.  I've had a really strong first month of Paleo and maybe I can do a better job of keeping a food blog this time.  So, here I go again.

Stuffed Acorn Squash

1 pound ground meat of choice, browned and crumbled
1 acorn squash
5 small dried shiitake mushrooms (or other dried mushroom), reconstituted and finely chopped
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small cauliflower, chopped to rice size with the food processor
1 small onion, roughly chopped
1 poblano pepper, skinned, seeded and diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 t ground cumin*
1/2 t paprika*
1/4 t cinnamon*
3 T  white wine
1 can fire roasted tomatoes
salt & pepper to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Reconstitute the mushrooms according to package direction.  Save the water, you'll use it later.
  3. Brown the meat and remove from skillet leaving a thin layer of grease/oil in the pan.
  4. Saute the onions, garlic and poblano in the skillet that you browned the meat in.
  5. Add the spices when the veggies are soft and let it cook for a few minutes.  Remove from the skillet and add it to the bowl containing the meat.
  6. Heat a little oil in a skillet and add the cauliflower, mushrooms plus the soaking liquid and wine.  Cook until the liquid has evaporated.
  7. Add the fire roasted tomatoes, veggies and meat to the cauliflower mixture and mix well.  Heat through.
  8. Scoop the mixture into the squash and bake for 35-45 minutes.
Notes:  I nuked my squash in the microwave until they were partially done in order to reduce the bake time.  I figure the other ingredients were already cooked and I didn't think there was much need to have them roasting away in the oven while the squash cooked.  If you don't want to do that then extend the bake time to 45-60 minutes.  At any rate you should be able to pierce the squash easily with a fork when it's done. 

I think I would like to use delicata squash the next time because they are smaller.  I was only able to eat a 1/4 of the squash for a meal so this made 4 servings for me with a little meat mixture left over.  I believe next time I'll use half the cauliflower and reduce the filling mixture by half and use one delicata.

Feel free to wing it with the ingredients.  That's usually what I do when I find a recipe I want to try.

* The spice measurements are my best guess since I rarely measure my spices.  Sorry if this throws you off.  The main thing for me is cumin and then some paprika and just a smidge of cinnamon.