casserole · gluten free · vegetarian

Cheese Please!

After just coming off a juice cleanse and not drinking for a month, I rewarded myself by cramming my body full of cheese at a Super Bowl party. My boyfriend and I had our inaugural meal at Milagro (which has my favourite brunch item) and a mimosa. Huevos Milagro is similar to huevos rancheros but with pulled chicken and some funky salsa. I get it every time I go there and it never disappoints. We then headed to the party where we drank from a mini keg of Heineken and ate a cheese ball, jalapeños poppers, mac and cheese, nachos and more cheese.

I knew my body would be in dairy shock, so I made sure to add some cheese to my casserole prior to cheese fest 3000 hoping my body would acclimate. (I don’t think my logic is sound, but I really wanted an excuse to eat cheese.) My cleanse was technically over but I was supposed to eat mostly fruits and veg. I created this wicked casserole using veg I had in the fridge and spaghetti squash. If you’re never cooked spaghetti squash before, do it! I stab it a couple times and heat it in the mircro wave in a dish with a tiny bit of water for 6 minutes. This makes it easier to cut in half, because getting into one of these puppies is like cracking a safe. Once cut in half, lay flesh side down on a baking sheet with a bit of olive oil. Cook at 350 for about 40 minutes. Let cool, scoop out seeds and use a spoon to shred the “spaghetti” out of the squash.

I never really write out my recipes but here goes! In a large frying pan sauté onion, garlic, mushrooms, peppers. (you could use zucchini, broccoli, carrots or whatever veg you like.) Then add about a cup of cooked barley(I had some leftover from another recipe), 1 cup of tomato sauce, spaghetti squash and as much parmesan cheese as you feel like. You’re an adult and you play by your own rules, so go nuts. Pour this all into a casserole dish, top with cheese of your choice(I used a bit of mozzarella and cheddar) and bake at 375 for 30 minutes or until cheese is brown and bubbly. Top with red pepper flakes and serve! My caveman boyfriend often feels lost with a meal sans meat, but he loved this. The barley really helped it become a substantial dinner.

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