Chase helped me make dinner Saturday night. He prepped the veggies for our casserole by sautéing onions, purple cabbage, red bell pepper, shredded carrots, broccoli, and fire roasted tomatoes. He added a can of cannelini beans to thicken them, and seasoned it all with Italian spices. That went into a big casserole dish. Then he made the topping with half a block of tofu cut to the size of croutons, ½ cup panko, a little nutritional yeast, minced garlic, olive oil, salt, and dried basil, oregano, and paprika. The casserole baked in a 350 oven for about 20 minutes, or until heated through and the tofu is crispy. It looks like this just out of the oven:
I happened on to these “croutons” awhile back when making pizza. I had diced the tofu too small and in a really hot oven they nearly disintegrated. When done right, the nice thing about the croutons is they stay crispy on top of the veggies, but get soft again when mixed in with the hot broth.
I made our side dish – a ring of wild and white rice with roasted Brussels sprouts. We can’t get enough Brussels sprouts these days!
We had some crusty store bought French bread to gather up all the goodness.
For dessert we had the best muffins I’ve made in a long, long time. I suppose it’s because they are made entirely with wheat flour (I shouldn’t eat) that made them rise so high and taste so light. They are Pumpkin, Millet, and Chocolate Chip Muffins that I adapted from this recipe, eliminating the dairy products and processed sugar, and adding chocolate chips. Toasted millet replaces nuts, and after several bites trying to figure out what the millet reminded us of, it hit – candy sprinkles! I’ll include my recipe because I hope if you have leftover pumpkin from Thanksgiving, a chocolate craving, and are in the mood for a unique and fun crunch in your muffins, you’ll give these a try.
Pumpkin, Millet, and Chocolate Chip (Rockin’) Muffins
(not gluten free)
½ cup millet
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 t. baking powder
½ t. baking soda
½ t. salt
½ t. cinnamon
½ t. nutmeg
¼ t. ground cloves
1 cup “buttermilk”
1 cup pumpkin puree
¼ cup maple syrup
¼ cup canola oil
¼ cup sucanat
1 t. vanilla
½ cup chocolate chips
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line or spray a 12-cup muffin pan.
Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Add millet and toast, stirring occasionally, until millet is golden brown and begins to pop, about 3 minutes. (The millet will not pop out of the skillet like other grains or seeds tend to do.) Remove from heat and let cool.
Combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices in a medium bowl. Combine the rest of the ingredients, except chocolate chips, in a large bowl and mix thoroughly. Add millet to the flour mixture, then add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Fill muffin cups and bake 20 to 25 minutes or until tester comes out clean. Let cool 5 minutes in the pan, then remove to a rack to cool completely.
I hope you all enjoyed the long weekend as much as I did. I relaxed as much as possible because I know from now until the end of the year will be crazy busy.