Roasted honey nut squash and chickpeas and more recipes to try this week The Denver Post

Cookie season has started off with a bang. And yet, you can’t just eat cookies. You have to eat dinner. (I don’t make the rules!) I’ve got five ideas for you below.

1. Roasted Honey Nut Squash and Chickpeas With Hot Honey

Colorful and meatless, sweet and fiery, this sheet-pan dinner is an exuberant combination of cold-weather vegetables and warming spices that will perk up any weeknight. Although the recipe takes about an hour from start to finish, most of it is hands-off, and the actual prep time is relatively short. If you don’t have hot honey, you can substitute regular honey and a pinch of cayenne. And try to use canned chickpeas prepared with sea salt; the unsalted kind are bland.

By Melissa Clark

Yield: 4 servings

Total time: 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 2 (14.5-ounce) cans chickpeas (preferably not “no salt added”), drained and rinsed
  • 2 1/2 pounds honey nut or butternut squash, peeled, trimmed, seeded and cut into 1-inch cubes (6 cups)
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons baharat, garam masala or another spice blend
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons fine salt, plus more as needed
  • 5 thyme sprigs
  • 1/8 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
  • 1 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon cider vinegar or rice wine vinegar, plus more as needed
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves or dill sprigs, or a combination
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons hot honey, plus more to taste
  • Plain whole-milk yogurt or sour cream, for serving (optional)

Preparation

1. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line one sheet pan with parchment paper and a second sheet pan with a clean kitchen towel or paper towels. Place drained chickpeas on the towel-lined sheet pan and gently rub them dry. Place the pan on the back of the stove and let the chickpeas dry as you prepare the other ingredients.

2. Place the squash on the parchment paper-lined pan and toss with 1 teaspoon baharat, 1/2 teaspoon salt, thyme sprigs, red-pepper flakes and 2 tablespoons oil. Spread squash into an even layer and roast for 20 minutes.

3. After 20 minutes of roasting, in a medium bowl, combine chickpeas, red onion, remaining 3/4 teaspoon baharat, 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon oil, and toss until well combined. Add the mixture to the pan of squash and stir everything well. Continue roasting for another 30 minutes, tossing the mixture halfway through, until the squash is golden brown and tender, and the chickpeas and onions are slightly crispy.

4. Remove the pan from the oven, sprinkle vinegar and herbs on top and toss. Drizzle with hot honey and toss again to combine. Taste and season with more salt, more hot honey and vinegar to taste. Serve with dollops of yogurt if you’d like.

2. Chicken Stroganoff

This Brazilian stroganoff is a riff on the classic Russian-American beef, mushroom and sour cream stew that was considered peak haute cuisine in the United States during the 1950s. In Brazil, stroganoff is often made with beef, chicken or shrimp, but with a tomato base and heavy cream instead of sour cream. The biggest difference is in the accompaniments: The stew is served with rice and topped with crispy potato sticks. Do not omit the crunchy potato; it may be a garnish, but it is essential. If sticks are hard to find, replace them with lightly crushed chips.

By Ham El-Waylly

Yield: 4 servings

Total time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 pound button mushrooms, wiped clean and cut into quarters
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 fresh or dried bay leaf
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup tomato purée or passata
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/3 cup parsley leaves, roughly chopped
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • Cooked white rice, for serving
  • Crispy potato sticks, for serving

Preparation

1. Place a medium pot over medium-high heat and add the butter. When the butter has started foaming, add the mushrooms, toss to coat and season with a large pinch of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms have released all their liquid and are a deep mahogany brown, about 15 minutes.

2. Add the onion, garlic and bay leaf and cook, stirring frequently, until onion and garlic are fragrant, softened and a little brown along the edges, about 5 minutes.

3. Add the heavy cream, scraping off any stuck-on bits with a spatula or wooden spoon. Add the chicken, tomato purée, ketchup, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and a large pinch of salt. Stir to combine, bring to a gentle simmer and cook until flavors meld and chicken is fully cooked, about 10 minutes.

4. Take the pan off the heat, remove and discard the bay leaf and stir in the parsley. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve on top of white rice and garnish with a handful of potato sticks.

3. Spaghetti al Limone With Shrimp

There are many interpretations of the classic Italian pasta dish, spaghetti al limone, or spaghetti with lemon. Some call for an Alfredo-like sauce made with heavy cream, butter and Parmesan, while others rely on just olive oil, lemon juice, Parmesan and starchy pasta water. This particular recipe, which adds sautéed shrimp, white wine and fresh tarragon to the mix, leans toward the simpler preparation. Without the addition of heavy cream, the sauce has a brighter lemon flavor, which works beautifully with the delicate brininess of the shrimp. Tarragon adds a fragrant note and a bit of complexity to an otherwise fairly straightforward dish. Finally, if there were a time to spring for freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, this would be it. In an uncomplicated recipe like this one, the quality of each ingredient is paramount.

By Lidey Heuck

Yield: 6 servings

Total time: 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 1 pound large shrimp (18 to 20 count), peeled and deveined, tails on or off
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 lemons, zested (about 1 1/2 packed tablespoons), plus 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon, plus more for serving
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Preparation

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the spaghetti and cook according to package directions until al dente. Scoop out 1 cup of the cooking liquid, then drain the pasta and set aside.

2. While the pasta cooks, pat the shrimp dry and season them with salt and black pepper. Combine the olive oil, lemon zest (setting a few pinches aside for serving) and tarragon in a large skillet set over medium heat. When the oil begins to sizzle, cook for 1 more minute, until the zest and tarragon are fragrant but not browned.

3. Add the shrimp to the skillet and spread into an even layer. Cook for about 90 seconds on each side, or until just cooked through. Transfer the shrimp to a plate and set aside.

4. Add the wine, 1 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of black pepper to the skillet, and bring to a simmer, scraping any browned bits from the pan. Cook until the wine has reduced by about half, then set aside, off the heat, until the pasta has finished cooking.

5. Add the cooked pasta and reserved pasta water to the skillet. Cook over medium-low heat for 2 to 3 minutes, tossing often, until the liquid that has collected at the bottom of the skillet has reduced slightly. (The sauce should still be fairly loose at this point.)

6. Off the heat, add the butter and 1/2 cup Parmesan, sprinkling the cheese evenly over the pasta. Toss until the butter and cheese are melted and the sauce is smooth. Add the lemon juice and remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan and toss until the sauce is thick and smooth.

7. Add the shrimp, toss, then season with more salt and black pepper to taste. Divide among shallow bowls and garnish with chopped fresh tarragon, lemon zest and black pepper.

4. Tofu and Mushroom Jorim (Soy-Braised Tofu)

Korean jorim is a traditional braised dish typically made with beef that is stewed in a savory garlic- and ginger-spiked soy sauce until tender. This version highlights tofu’s ability to absorb the aromatic salty-sweet sauce like a sponge; earthy shiitake mushrooms add depth and a meaty texture that contrasts the tofu’s softness. The dish is as delicious cold as it is hot, so it’s a great make-ahead meal; simply cool and chill overnight in an airtight container.

By Kay Chun

Yield: 4 servings

Total time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces, plus more thinly sliced scallions for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil, such as safflower or canola
  • 2 tablespoons turbinado or light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 (14- to 16-ounce) block firm tofu, drained and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 6 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced into 1/2-inch-thick pieces
  • Salt
  • Steamed rice and kimchi (optional), for serving

Preparation

1. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat, combine soy sauce, garlic, ginger, scallions, oil, sugar, pepper and 1/4 cup water; mix well. Add tofu and mushrooms, season with salt and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, carefully turning tofu and stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens into a glaze and coats the mixture, about 15 minutes.

2. Transfer the jorim to a serving bowl or platter and garnish with thinly sliced scallions. Serve with rice and kimchi, if using.

5. Dutch Baby

This large, fluffy pancake is excellent for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dessert any time of year. And it comes together in about five blessed minutes. Just dump all of the ingredients into a blender, give it a good whirl, pour it into a heated skillet sizzling with butter, and pop it into the oven. Twenty-five minutes later? Bliss. It’s wonderful simply with sugar, syrup or preserves, but you also can serve it with fresh berries and whipped cream, apple slices cooked in butter and sugar or banana slices lightly cooked then dusted with brown sugar.

By Florence Fabricant

Yield: 3 to 4 servings

Total time: 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole milk, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Syrup, preserves, powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar

Preparation

1. Heat oven to 425 degrees.

2. Combine eggs, flour, milk, sugar and nutmeg in a blender jar and blend until very smooth. Batter may also be mixed by hand.

3. Place butter in a heavy 10-inch skillet and place in the oven. As soon as the butter has melted (watch it so it does not burn) add the batter to the pan, return pan to the oven and bake for 20 minutes, until the pancake is puffed and golden. Lower oven temperature to 300 degrees and bake 5 minutes longer.

4. Remove pancake from oven, cut into wedges and serve at once topped with syrup, preserves, powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar.

This article originally appeared in The New York Times.

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