If you hadn’t noticed, I took a little break from blogging and social media the last few weeks. Well, except for instagram.
I even have a handful of recipes ready to post, but it’s been difficult to find the words to put to any of them. I tried multiple times to sit down and there was so much racing through my head, but nothing that I could put into words. Not here.
So, I bought a journal. I’m sure once I actually sit down and write in it, it will help.
My life just doesn’t seem real most days. Emotions and feelings are constantly juggled, but by someone who doesn’t know how to juggle. I never really know what day it is until my husband doesn’t get out of bed Saturday morning. Going into the office feels like “me” time. when I run into you, I can tell you my mom’a on hospice and won’t even shed a tear. But I will later. And those I considered to be my friends, now feel like family.
It’s a journey.
This journey also includes me in the kitchen. The one place where I feel like myself.
A beautiful part of this journey is being able to feed my family. Seeing my mom sigh as she takes her first bite and then finishing her bowl absolutely fills my heart with such joy.
I’ve made this dish multiple times for my family and even the two out of five who dislike any kind of squash, devour this. We’ve been eating a lot of pasta lately (nights when I get home late) and just feels good to swap it out with a vegetable. The sausage and cheese makes this a filling dish, but also very comforting, yet without guilt. It’s so wonderful.
I’m so proud of Todd and Diane, the authors and photographers of this incredible cookbook, Bountiful. A few years ago (almost exactly, this month) we went to Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo Mexico for Food & Wine where I went as a blogger correspondent and they were the photographers. Instead of bringing my husband, I brought my mom. I was 7 weeks pregnant at the time (& so sick) so who better to bring than your mom. We had such a wonderful time and really great conversations just the four of us. Todd and Diane had shared their vision of their future cookbook (this is it!) and their love for their garden. It’s so exciting to see it all come to life. Mom would be so proud of you two and this beautiful book.
Thank you to everyone for hanging in there with me and having patience when I need to take my time. For those who’d like to follow along with my mother’s journey, you can check out her Caring Bridge page that I try and update when I can (or when there are updates).
Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Sausage
Recipe from Bountiful Cookbook
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 spaghetti squash (about 3 lbs)
- 3/4 pound uncooked sausage (I used a Cajun style pre-cooked sausage here, but I’ve done both)
- 5 medium shallots, thickly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup coarsely grated Parmigiana Reggiano
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped oregano or other herbs that compliment the sausage
- Sea salt
- Ground black pepper
- Optional – red pepper chili flakes
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Oil a baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
Slice the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and stringy bits and pieces, the place the squash cut side down, on the prepared pan.
Bake for 35-45 minutes or until a fork easily separates the squash flesh into strands. Loosen and remove the “spaghetti” from the skin and set aside. Note: if it’s a smaller squash, start with a smaller cooking time.
Pinch and pull small balls of the sausage out of its casing, arranging them so they stay separate. If you use pre-cooked sausage, slice and cut in half. In a large sauté pan, heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic. Cook until soft, stirring, then add the sausage. Cook, untouched, until the sausage starts to brown, then stir. Continue cooking, stirring, occasionally until the sausage is cooked through, 2-3 minutes.
Add the squash strands to the sausage and continue cooking until heated through, about 1 minute.
Remove the pan and the heat. Toss in the Parmigiana Reggiano and oregano. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Optional – sprinkle red pepper chili flakes.
Serve immediately and enjoy!
February 11 2014