Wednesday, August 24, 2011

What a difference a day makes!

                                                                                            This was Monday evening - a peaceful beautiful sky very unlike the sky that opened up on Sunday evening with a line of storms.  As the storm line was approaching, my little lawnmowers - aka babydoll sheep - were nowhere to be found. The rain began to pour and still I could not find them.  Drenched as I was, I had to give up the search when the lightning began - wet is one thing, electrified wet is a whole different story. When the round of storms passed, I was back out again to get them in before the rain came through again.                                     This time I searched the area in the woodline next to the secondary fence.  Way down towards the bottom of the field, of course, there they were, huddled together in a thicket. 
    Trying to get them out just reinforced all the sheep expressions that have become so familiar in our vocabulary left over from the agrarian days of our society. "Like a flock of sheep" and "acting sheepish" came to mind. I, however, was hoping for "follow like sheep," but clearly I was not the one they wanted to follow.  Although it was probably a good idea for Little Bo Peep, I would not be able to leave them alone for them to come home.  There was a good chance they would become something's dinner.  With great effort I was able to break one away from the group, and then the rest realized that was a good idea and off they went.  They raced for home base wagging their tails behind them.
     My recipe for the day- spaghetti squash - the vegetable that acts like pasta!
            Spaghetti Squash Gratins with Chunky Tomato Sauce 5*

1 (2-pound) spaghetti squash
1 tsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp kosher salt, divided
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
¼ tsp crushed red pepper
2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, drained and chopped
3 oregano sprigs
3 thyme sprigs
½ cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 (15-ounce) carton fat-free ricotta cheese
   Preheat oven 400.
    Cut spaghetti squash in half crosswise.  Place cut side down on a plate and microwave 8 minutes or until tender.  Scrape inside of squash with a fork to remove spaghetti-like strands to measure 4 cups.
     Heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat.  Add garlic; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently.  Add ½ tsp salt, ¼ tsp pepper, crushed red pepper, tomatoes, oregano, and thyme sprigs; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, and simmer for 20 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.  Discard oretgano and thyme sprigs.
     Combine remaining ½ tsp salt, remaining  ¼ tsp pepper, Parmesan, and remaining ingredients.  Spoon squash in baking dish, spoon tomato sauce evenly over squash; spoon ricotta evenly over sauce.  Bake for 50 minutes or until lightly browned.
Adapted from Cooking Light 12/05

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