Spaghetti Squash & Sauce

Happy National Spaghetti Day! You didn’t think I’d pass up posting a yummy and healthy recipe on this delicious holiday did you? I’m bringing you a bowl full of steaming hot vegan, gluten-free and processed sugar free goodness – you’re welcome! 😉

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The most time consuming part of this recipe is probably the gutting of the spaghetti squash, you know like taking out the seeds and whatnot. But if you’re an expert pumpkin gutter, than you’ll certainly be able to finish this prep in no time! Plus, as with most squashes, once you rinse the spaghetti squash seeds you’re halfway to completing my yummy Cinnamon Sugar Squash Seeds recipe. This serves as the perfect on-the-go snack and is SO easy to make!

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You’re going to want to roast the spaghetti squash in the oven for a bit so that the “spaghetti” are pretty much cooked. This is BEFORE you use a fork to rake it into the shreds you see in the photos above and below!

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This recipe creates the perfect dinner (and make-ahead lunch for the rest of the week!) Pop it into a few mason jars (yup, I’m still obsessed) and bring it to school or work with you for an awesome guilt-free afternoon pick-me-up.

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If you’re eating it for dinner (perhaps tonight, to celebrate the National Spaghetti Day holiday) you can even serve in the squash casings! This does render A LOT of servings however, so be sure you can handle the portion sizes before serving 😉

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Spaghetti Squash & Sauce

Prep Time: 20 Minutes       Cook Time: 40 Minutes        Total Time: 1 Hour

Let’s Get Started:

1 spaghetti squash
Olive oil
Melt (Coconut Oil Butter)
Salt
Pepper
1 can crushed tomatoes
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped

Let’s Get Cooking:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Cut spaghetti squash in half and brush the insides with olive oil. Sprinkle with Himalayan Pink Sea Salt and Pepper. Put cut sides down on a baking sheet and bake for about 40 minutes.

While the spaghetti squash is baking, toss onion and garlic in a pan with olive oil until slightly browned. In a small pot add crushed tomatoes, salt and pepper. Add the onion and garlic mixture to the pot as well. Simmer for about 40 minutes, or until the acidic tomato taste is dulled.

Take spaghetti squash out of the oven and rake it with a fork. Mix in the sauce and enjoy!

Let’s Get Creative:

If you’re feeling extra classy, add some red wine to your tomato sauce – I promise it won’t disappoint!

Stay Classy! xx

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Crispy Coconut Shrimp

The last few days have been super relaxing down the shore. We’ve been blessed with beautiful (but hot!!) weather so I’ve been able to spend a lot of time outside and on the beach which has been so nice. I’ve let myself be more loose with my to-do list but still make sure to get in a daily workout and meditation – it just makes my day overall better and is worth the time! This adorable beach town has been so cute and inspiring that I decided to switch up my meals with a fun and yummy seafood dish!

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I’ve never made coconut shrimp before but I love the flavors in the ingredients. I decided to take a leap of faith and try it out and was shocked that on the first try it came out incredibly flavorful and perfectly crispy – and blog worthy!

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The process ended up taking me a while because I made 2+ pounds of shrimp (which was so good it was gone in less than two days!) but when you’re starting to run out of ingredients, just add as needed. I pretty much ended up doubling the recipe, as the ingredient list below is meant for 1 pound of shrimp, which serves about 4 people.

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Crispy Coconut Shrimp

Prep Time: 20 Minutes     Cook Time:     30 Minutes     Total Time: 50 Minutes

Let’s Get Started:

1/3 cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
2 large eggs, beaten
¾ cup Panko bread crumbs
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1 pound raw large shrimp, peeled and deveined
vegetable or coconut oil

1 cup Almiera organic whole wheat basmati rice

Let’s Get Cookin’:

Set up 3 medium bowls. Combine flour, salt and pepper in one. Beat eggs in the second bowl. Combine Panko and coconut in the third bowl.

Dip the shrimp into the flour, then eggs, then coconut mixture. Press firmly to make sure coconut and Panko are sticking to the shrimp. Set coated shrimp aside on a plate while you coat the remaining shrimp.

Add enough oil to cover the bottom of a large skillet on medium heat. Fry the coconut shrimp in smaller batches – 7 or 8 at a time. You do not want to crowd the pan. Flip the shrimp after 2 minutes and fry the other side for 2 more minutes. If you like your coconut shrimp to be a bit darker, fry each side for 3 minutes.

Place the finished coconut shrimp on a plate lined with a paper towel. If you are making them as an appetizer, serve with a sweet Thai sauce (1 part Thai sweet chili sauce to 2 parts orange marmalade). If you are serving as an entrée, serve with rice. I particularly loved this Almiera rice because it was light and accentuated the crisp of the shrimp.

Let’s Get Creative:

There are so many ways to get creative with this recipe. Coconut shrimp are delicious on their own and I felt that they didn’t even need a dipping sauce. However, you can get creative with the sauce should you desire one! The sweet Thai chili sauce (above) would be delicious with it!

You can also get creative with the seasonings. Finely chopped cilantro would be a lovely addition.

Enjoy & Stay Classy! xx

Chicken Tikka Masala with Coconut Rice and Kontos Naan

Being away from London for a few weeks has already made me nostalgic for the city and its food. I stumbled across a can of Tikka Masala sauce while in the grocery store the other day and decided that paired with Kontos Naan, it would be the closest thing to what I learned to make in London that I could get! The flavor is unfortunately not the same as Brick Lane or my favorite Indian pub, but it was delicious and did remind me of my semester abroad.

You can find pre-made tikka masala sauce in most International Foods sections of the grocery store. Kontos Naan is actually hand-stretched so that it is extra fluffy and it was amazing. You can find it here.

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Let’s Get Started:

For the chicken:

3 large chicken breasts, cut into cubes
1 jar chicken tikka masala sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
Plain non-fat yogurt

For the rice:

1 can coconut milk
¼ cup water
1/3 cup white basmati rice

Let’s Get Cookin’:

Cut chicken breasts into cubes and season with salt and pepper. In a medium pot, boil water and coconut milk. When it begins to boil, add rice and stir occasionally for 30 minutes. Place chicken pieces into a pan and cook on medium heat for 5 minutes. Add full jar of tikka masala sauce to chicken and let simmer for 20-25 minutes. Make sure chicken is fully cooked. Take off heat and serve with coconut rice, Naan and yogurt.

Let’s Get Creative:

This recipe can also be made vegetarian – Tofu Tikka Masala! Just follow the instructions above and substitute tofu for chicken. I made this for my youngest sister who is a vegetarian and she loved it.

Get creative with your sides! Coconut string beans would go great with this too. Yum!

Enjoy & Stay Classy! xx

Pineapple Chicken & Rice

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It’s so crazy to me that not only do I now like pineapples (after actually despising them for 19 years of my life) but I’m currently obsessed with them. I’ve come a long way from ordering smoothies with ALL of the available fruits, “but no pineapple, please.” My obsession definitely started up again after visiting Barcelona a few weeks ago and enjoying an incredible acai bowl served in a pineapple… mmmm.

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I’ve actually been sick all day today – haven’t even left my flat – so creating this recipe was the most productive part of my day. Besides my nap… all of the naps. I picked up this medium sized pineapple the other day thinking I would use it in my oatmeal but I just couldn’t wait until tomorrow’s breakfast! This recipe is super easy to make (it takes around 12-15 minutes total) and it’s seriously delicious.

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Let’s Get Started:

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup chopped onions
3 pieces chicken breast, chopped
2 cups chopped pineapple
4 cups cooked brown rice
3 tablespoons soy sauce
Salt and pepper to taste

Let’s Get Cookin’:

Heat up a frying pan or wok on medium high heat. Add olive oil, minced garlic and chopped onions, sauté until fragrant (1 minute).  Add chopped chicken and pineapple, sauté for about 5 minutes. Add the rice (2 minutes). Add soy sauce and stir fry until everything is heated through (3 minutes). Adjust seasoning to taste and serve while hot.

Let’s Get Creative:

First, serve it in the pineapple! You scooped out the fruit and letting the finished meal sit in there and absorb the rest of the pineapple juice makes it taste (and look) so much better. You can also add as many veggies to the recipe as you want! I’m thinking I might add a bit of coconut milk to the next recipe too.

Stay Classy & Enjoy! xx

Practically Perfect Porchini Mushroom Risotto

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Just a few simple ingredients can go a long way in a good risotto. The fluffy rice and porchini mushrooms make for a practically perfect pairing, and this risotto is the perfect appetizer or side dish, especially when accompanied by a nice white wine. I adapted this recipe from Shaquille O’Neal’s personal chef, Thomas Gosney’s new cookbook “Method of Procedure.”

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Prep Time: 10 Minutes         Cook Time: 40 Minutes

11951891_650561688313623_4882047658194576084_nLet’s Get Started 

2 cups Arborio Short Grain Rice, Italian short grain rice
2 tbsp. Olive Oil
4 cups Mushroom Broth, Vegetable Broth or Chicken Broth (hot)
1 cup Dried Porchini Mushrooms
2 cups Hot Water
2 tbsp. Whole Butter
2 tbsp. Pecorino Romano Cheese
1 tsp. Fresh Chives or Green Onions, finely chopped
1 tsp. Fresh Italian Parsley or Curly Leaf Parsley, finely chopped
½ tsp. Truffle Oil (optional)

 Let’s Get Cookin’

Pour hot water into the dried mushrooms to rehydrate them. Let sit while preparing
other steps, this will provide the mushroom essence for the Risotto.
Heat broth to a simmer.
Heat olive oil in a sauté pan on medium temperature. Add Arborio Rice and sauté so all the oil is absorbed into the rice. Continue cooking until the rice is lightly browned.
Strain the mushroom essence into the rice, stirring so the rice doesn’t clump up. Set the hydrated mushrooms aside. Cook until all the liquid is absorbed. Add broth 1 cup at a time repeating the process until all liquid is absorbed. This will take about 25 minutes.
When you are close to the end add the mushrooms. Ideally, you want the rice to be al dente. It should have a creamy consistency, not thick.
Remove from heat and add butter and cheese. Sprinkle with chives parsley and drizzle truffle oil all over.11949544_650561704980288_7938299672130010412_n

Let’s Get Creative

As I mentioned above, if done right, this recipe is practically perfect. To make it even better here are some suggestions.

  • Add some pignoli nuts
  • Add some white wine
  • Add other varieties of mushrooms to the essence

Enjoy! Stay Classy! xx