Today is Family Day here in BC, and what a glorious day it is. A few years ago it was decided that we needed another stat holiday to break up the long stretch between Christmas and Easter, and thus, Family Day was born.
There’s something about sleeping in on a Monday that’s just so fantastic. I think the plan for today is to spend some quality time with Parker – maybe a long hike or a trip to the dog park – and then hopefully he’ll be tired enough to let me do some baking and cooking.
I spend a good part of last week cooking and baking things to take over to my mum, who just had a hip replacement. She’s such a trooper, hobbling around in her little home with her little walker (forgive me, mum, for admitting you’re using a walker). Don’t worry, mum! You’ll ditch that walker and be back to hopping around again before you know it! It might be hard now, but every day will get a little better. Come summer time you’ll be running laps through the neighbourhood.
This casserole bake was included in the care package I sent over, which ended up being so tasty I had to make a post for it. I wanted to make something healthy, yet comforting. Something that would cheer her up, fill her with veggies, but still be super easy to reheat, requiring little effort (and little movement!) on her part.
I was originally going to make this with pasta, but I saw the quinoa in the pantry and thought I’d try it out. I really do love quinoa – it’s a grain trend I can get on board with – especially when it’s in something like this. It’s such a cozy, comforting meal, and you wouldn’t even guess that you’re eating tons of veggies and healthy grains.
I’m going to be making this again quite soon! Since I sent this off to my mum after only a couple bites, I definitely need a hearty dish of this to use for leftovers and cozy weeknight dinners.
|Roasted Butternut Squash & Cauliflower Quinoa Bake with Bacon|| || |
- 3 cups (1-inch) cubed peeled butternut squash
- 1 head cauliflower, broken into small florets
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp dried rosemary
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp red chili flakes
- 8 bacon slices, chopped into small pieces
- 1 cup thinly sliced shallots
- 1 cup quinoa
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk
- ¾ cup (3 ounces) shredded sharp provolone cheese
- ⅓ cup (1½ ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
- Fresh rosemary, to serve (optional)
- Preheat oven to 425°.
- Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil; oil well. Place butternut squash on one sheet and the cauliflower on the other. Drizzle olive oil, ½ tsp of the salt, rosemary, pepper, chili flakes over the veggies, toss to coat, then bake 30-35 minutes until softened and browned. Remove from oven and transfer to a large bowl.
- Increase oven temperature to 450°. Lightly grease a 8x8-inch baking dish; set aside.
- Cook the bacon in a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat for about 5 minutes until it starts to brown. Add shallots and cook another 5-10 minutes until bacon is crispy. Transfer to the bowl with the veggies.
- Cook quinoa according to package directions. Drain well.
- In the previously used skillet, combine flour and remaining ½ teaspoon salt over medium-high heat. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly with a whisk; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute until thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add provolone, stirring until melted. Add milk mixture and quinoa to the veggie bowl, tossing well to combine. Spoon mixture into prepared baking dish and sprinkle evenly with Parmesan. Bake for 10-15 minutes until the cheese on top melts and begins to brown. Serve with fresh rosemary if desired.