Italian

Spaghetti Squash and Millet Marinara

I love to use cooked millet in place of pasta in Italian style dishes.  When added to spaghetti squash, it adds a heartiness to the squash and is much more filling. Millet is high in protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and is a great source of complex carbohydrates that our body uses for energy! If you want energy, eat a high-carbohydrate diet. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 spaghetti squash, cooked *

1 cup dry millet, cooked**

 

Marinara (Use your favorite bottled if desired)

1 onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 24 oz box Pomi tomatoes

1/2 can tomato paste (3 oz)

1 t basil

1 t oregano

1/2 t turmeric (optional)

1/4 t black pepper

 

*Cook spaghetti squash in the oven at 350 for about 1 hour until soft. I leave it whole. No need to stab it with a knife or anything . Just place it on a baking sheet and turn on the oven. I’ll put this in the oven in the morning while getting ready for work.

**Boil 2 cups water. Add dry millet, turn heat to simmer, cover and cook until tender, about 15 – 20 minutes.

Saute onion in a dry pan over medium-high heat until it starts to brown. Add minced garlic and stir for 1 minutes. Add tomatoes and tomato paste and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a low boil then turn to simmer. Add herbs and spices. Cook 10 or 15 minutes.  

Scrape squash strands into a bowl. Add desired amount of millet and  top with marinara.

 

Millet Premavera

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve been making this recipe since my early days of plant-based eating. It’s so good that it’s remained a favorite through the years. It has the flavors of an Italian pasta dish without the pasta.

 

1 cup millet, uncooked

1 onion, chopped

1 – 2 cups chopped mushrooms, cremini or white button

3 cloves garlic, minced

4 carrots, halved lengthwise and sliced

3 cups small cauliflower florets

3 cups small broccoli florets

2 14 oz. cans diced tomatoes

2 cups frozen peas

1 T dried basil

1/4 t black pepper

1/3 cup pine nuts, coarsely chopped (or raw pumpkin seeds)

2 T lemon juice

Sea salt

 

Boil 2 cups water in a small saucepan. Add millet, reduce heat to low,  cover, and simmer 20 minutes until tender. In a large pan over medium- high heat, sauté onion and mushrooms in 1/4 cup water for 2 minutes. Add garlic and remaining raw vegetables, and cook until vegetables are tender. Add more water if needed to keep from sticking. Add tomatoes, peas, basil, and pepper. Cook 5 more minutes. Mix in cooked millet, pine nuts, lemon juice, and salt to taste.

Eggplant Roll-Ups

Even meat-eaters will devour these comforting Eggplant Roll-Ups. Using thinly sliced eggplant instead of noodles is a great way to get this nutrient-dense vegetable into your diet.

2 large eggplant, sliced lengthwise 1/4 inch thick

1 medium onion finely chopped

1 medium red bell pepper chopped

2 cups chopped mushrooms

4 cloves garlic minced

2 tsp Italian style seasoning

3 Tbsp Sesame Parmesan seasoning

2 Tbsp nutrition yeast flakes

2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

14 oz firm tofu pressed and crumbled

10 ounces baby spinach

1/2 cup chopped olives

1 large jar of oil free pasta sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange eggplant in a single layer on cooking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover with a second baking sheet or aluminum foil. Bake about 20 minutes, uncover and bake an additional 5 – 10 minutes to brown and become flexible enough to easily roll.*

While eggplant is cooking, sauté bell pepper, onion, garlic and mushrooms until tender. Add seasonings, tofu and spinach. Mix well and cover until spinach is wilted. Add 1/2 cup pasta sauce and salt to taste. Mix well. Lightly cover bottom of pan with pasta sauce. Place 1/4 cup of the vegetable filling on each eggplant slice, roll and place in a baking dish. Top with pasta sauce and olives. Bake 20 minutes.

*Baked eggplant slices are delicious with hummus spread on them and rolled up. See my Whole Food Hummus recipe found here.

Zoodles Marinara w/ Millet

Home Made Marinara

Make this sauce a day ahead so the flavors will meld and taste amazing!

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 pounds vine-ripe tomatoes, chopped

1 cup chopped mushrooms

1 t oregano (use fresh if available)

1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped

 

Saute’ onion in a dry sauce pan over medium-high heat until it starts to brown. Add minced garlic and saute for 1 minute. Add mushrooms and tomatoes. Bring to boil. Lower heat to medium and cook for 1/2 hour to 1 hour over medium low heat.  The more you cook the tomatoes, the more concentrated the sauce will be. Add fresh herbs the last 10 minutes of cooking.

Cooked Millet

Bring 2 cups water to boil in a sauce pan. Add dry millet, turn heat to low, cover, and cook for 15 – 20 minutes until tender. 

Zoodles (“noodles” made with zucchini)

Spiral slice 3 medium zucchini into a large saute pan and cook over medium high heat until desired tenderness, adding a bit of water as needed to keep from sticking to the pan.

Once the “Zoodles” reach the desired tenderness, pour the marinara over the Zoodles and stir well. Mix in desired amount of cooked millet. 

Note: Cooked quinoa can be used in place of millet but I prefer the hardiness of the millet. 

 

 

 

Italian Patty Melt w/ Mozzarella Seed Cheeze

Italian Patty MeltTopping

2 zucchini, ends trimmed and cut in half and sliced lengthwise in 1/4 inch strips or 1 eggplant sliced in 1/4 inch rounds
2 large tomatoes, sliced in 1/4 inch slices and set aside

Place zucchini or eggplant on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Set aside to bake with the Italian Bean Patties.

Seed Cheeze Sauce

1 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 cup water
1 red bell pepper, seeded and quartered
6 tablespoons lemon juice
3 or 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Sea salt

Blend all ingredients until smooth. Salt to taste. If needed, soak seeds in water to soften for 4 hours before blending. For a spicier cheeze sauce, add 1 or 2 red jalapenos, with or without seeds, in place of the bell peppers.

Italian Bean Patties

2 cups cooked kidney beans
1 cup rolled oats
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups chopped cremini mushrooms
3 oz. tomato paste
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning or 1/2 tablespoons each dried basil and oregano
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Preheat oven to 350 F. Mash all ingredients together until sticky. Form into patties and lay on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Place patties on middle rack of oven and place zucchini or eggplant on rack below patties. Bake for 30 minutes. Flip patties and bake an additional 10 minutes.

To make Italian Patty Melt, spread each patty with Mozzarella Seed Cheeze. Lay baked zucchini or eggplant over each patty. Top with a slice of fresh tomato, and spread more cheeze over tomato slice. Heat for 10 minutes in 350 degree oven.

Another delicious way to enjoy the Italian Patty is in a stack. Top with a spread of Seed Mozzarella, steamed greens dressed with more Seed Mozzarellas, and topped with spaghetti squash with Easy Marinara.      

OR

Cook dry millet according to package directions. Steam fresh spinach and stir in desired amount of cooked millet and desired amount of Cheeze Sauce. Serve on top of an Italian Patty and top with roasted tomato slices. Bake the tomato slices in the oven on a separate baking sheet while the patties are baking. 

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