Spaghetti Squash

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Tonight’s dinner was Spaghetti Squash. Yes……that’s right……..spaghetti squash. Instead of normal spaghetti with pasta, this dish uses squash as the noodles. This type of squash is seasonal, so look for it during the late summer and fall months (It’s a light yellow color). This is a super easy dish to make and is extremely great for you!

What makes this dish so great is that it eliminates the processed wheat out of the traditional dish of spaghetti. The squash noodles practically act the same as normal noodles. Wheat in excess is a burden on our bodies; everyone has some intolerance of wheat. By replacing the wheat with squash, we are not only reducing the amount of wheat we are eating, but also giving our bodies fiber and tons of nutrients. So, eating a piece of garlic bread with this dish is still OK because you’re still eating a low starch and sugary meal! This dish really doesn’t take much effort, just the time to cook the squash.
Spaghetti Squash
Servings from one squash: 4-6
Place the entire squash in a casserole dish filled with a half inch to an inch of water. Poke it with a fork if you like. 9X13 works well.
Bake it for 30-45 minutes on 375 degrees.
The squash will have to be cut in half and baking it somewhat beforehand makes this a lot easier!!
Remove the squash and cut the top part off where the stem is. Then cut in half lengthwise. Be careful, this squash is tough! Place a towel underneath it to keep from slipping.
Place the two halves back in the dish, right side up, and add more water if necessary. Put some butter on the halves as desired.
Bake for an hour to an hour thirty minutes. You want the squash noodles to be really done.
Rake out the seeds and mushier part of the squash from the center.
Scrape out the rest of the squash down to the skin of the squash rind. Do the same for the other half.
The full squash takes 16oz of tomato sauce. Any sauce can be used, but the squash absorbs and takes on the flavor of the sauce, so make sure you like the sauce.
Top with Parmesan cheese.

*Update: To make the spaghetti even better, try baking it for a bit after adding the sauce. You can then also put some cheese on top.

Butternut Squash Soup & Pumpkin Pie

Chilly fall weather requires warming foods. It gets so dreary outside, something warm to eat helps keep things comfy. I followed this recipe from My Kitchen Addiction. I found I could just mash the squash in the stockpot instead of blending it. That would have been really messy and taken more time. This soup is full of beta carotene and fiber, which of course is very healthy.

Butternut squash has the best tasting seeds of any squash. The seeds can be roasted very easily and they make a great snack. It’s almost like eating popcorn. While the soup was cooking, I separated the butternut squash seeds from the pulp and coated them with a little olive oil and put them in the oven at 300 degrees for about 10 minutes. I sprinkled them with some course sea salt.

Also while the soup was cooking I made a pie crust from scratch for a pumpkin pie. The recipe off the can uses condensed milk, which was different than I’ve had before. The pie was really good and is so much better than what you buy ready made!

The butternut squash soup simmering away
The roasted butternut squash seeds
This soup is really filling, and healthy too!

Fall Wreath

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Signs of fall are beginning to appear in Kentucky (even though these few days have been quite warm!) I made this wreath to hang on the door for some festive decor

Wisconsin Tour: Taliesin East & Frank Lloyd Wright

Day Four (08.20.10):

Taliesin Highlights Tour
Dinner at Old Feed Mill in Mazomanie, WI

Our last day trip was to Taliesin…which we had been wanting to go to for a long time! We had planned to go over spring break, but we found out it wasn’t open then. But coming this time of the year was a lot prettier!…even though we spent half the time in a rain storm!

Taliesin is located in Spring Green, WI which is west of Madison about an hour away. It is where Frank Lloyd Wright built his Taliesin East architecture school and his home. It is located on land his family had owned for a long time. Part of the site is still located on the original home and farm.

Taliesin is comprised of many different sections which surprised me. There is the guest center and restaurant (which was designed by Wright at a later time), the architecture school (which is still exists even today), Wright’s home, the original farm house, a small chapel, the windmills, the barn, the pond, lots of land, and couple of guest homes which is where some Taliesin trust members live. When I heard of Taliesin, I really thought it was just one building!

The architecture school holds a theater (which used to be a gym at some point), the studios, gallery space, and other rooms such as the dining hall and social space.
This is the architecture school. Taliesin was really only built as an experiment and a lot of it has been damaged by weather and just hasn’t held up! This means a lot of $$ to keep this place open!
This is the back part of the house where later in the house’s existence, cars were directed to park. Right now it is being re-roofed with wood shingles.
Wright didn’t like his entrances to be noticeable
Wright’s home was built into the side of a hill, instead of on top of it. The design of the building allows a courtyard that was really pretty!
Wright actually designed this barn that was used for building equipment and some farming tools. The men who first studied at Taliesin worked for their stay!
A pond was formed when Wright had part of a stream damed. However, it has many problems with it since it’s not really a natural area.
There are two windmills on site called Romeo & Juliet. Wright called them that because he said one couldn’t stand without the other. When they were built, no one thought they would ever last the weather here!
Taliesin is surrounded by lots of land. A large part of it is flat, and then meets up to some knobs. A lot of it is lawn grass, and other parts of it prairie
This is a small room attached to the barn and silo. There is a house attached to the barn as well where someone lives. However, a lot of it looked in bad shape!
Wright’s home from a distance
The Unity Chapel was used by the Wrights for services. It is still used today but more as a social space for the members of the preservation trust. This place was kind of creepy, but then again, it seems like most of Wright’s places I’ve been to are.
This is Wright’s ‘grave’ even though it isn’t really where he’s buried
The gift shop had a lot of nice and expensive things in it…I hope I can build something like this one day!

Wisconsin Tour: Old World Wisconsin

Day Two Itinerary (08.18.10):

Old World Wisconsin
All you can eat seafood buffet at OYSY Sushi & Seafood Buffet
Movie at Home: ‘North by Northwest’
The first of our day trips was to Old World Wisconsin in Eagle, WI. A few months earlier, a tornado (a tornado in WI!?) swept right through this place and pretty much destroyed their parking lot and lots of trees. However, it completely missed any of the houses! amazing…
Old World WI is pretty much a museum of Wisconsin buildings. They were actually all taken from around the state, and brought here, where they were rebuilt or settled down into a realistic setting. It is actually a pretty big place and they have done so to keep each building its own separate settlement. It is such a neat place and maintained really well (and isn’t one of those corny attractions!) It reminded me  of Shakertown back home in Lexington, Kentucky.
Old World even raises their own farm animals and makes food from their products, and does crafts just like the real settlers did back in the day. It’s really on its own really functional.
We finally took the tram that was offered after walking through the wooded areas (around a pond). We were attacked by hundreds of mosquitoes!
This is an old school house in Strawberry, where we were in the Apostle Islands!
We even tried some of the games they had in the schoolhouse building
This was one of the first churches in Milwaukee

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