Skinny Solar Mac and Cheese

Skinny Mac

A few years ago I was having dinner with a group of friends when the topic of disliked foods came up. Most of us were rather adventurous eaters so when we went around the table each naming the foods we did not enjoy the lists were rather short. I was the last to speak and mine were tofu and okra. And just about everyone agreed with me, quickly adding them to their own lists. I’m still working on finding a way to enjoy okra, but I have since learned that when tofu is used as an ingredient instead of the main attraction it’s not all that bad.

Sun Oven Mac’n’Cheese Surprise

Ingredients

1 pound shell or elbow whole wheat pasta

1 box (1 pound) silken tofu, drained

2 cups milk, (whole, 2%, or 1%)

2 tablespoons mustard

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 teaspoons cornstarch

6 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded

2 tablespoons butter, melted

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preparation

Set Sun Oven out to preheat. Coat a baking pan with cooking spray.

Cook the pasta according to the package instructions to al dente. Drain and set aside.

In a large sauce pan, use an immersion blender to combine the tofu, milk, mustard, paprika, salt, and pepper until smooth. Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring often. When it starts to simmer, whisk in the cornstarch and then the Cheddar cheese. Continue whisking until the mixture thickens, about 4 minutes. Spread the pasta out in the prepared baking pan. Pour the sauce over the pasta. In a small sauce pan, melt the butter. Stir in the breadcrumbs and parsley. Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture over the pasta. Top with a generous dusting of Parmesan cheese. Cover and bake in the Sun Oven until browned, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

 

Solar Roasted Veggies

Roast Veggies

Roast the vegetables during the day then combine with them pasta later for a lovely, solar-cooked dinner.

Sun Roasted Eggplant, Tomato, and Garlic Pasta Sauce

Ingredients

1 eggplant, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch slices

1 pound cherry tomatoes, halved

1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise

6 tablespoons olive oil, divided

salt

1 pound farfalle, rigatoni, or other pasta

1/2 cups fresh basil, chopped

1/2 cup freshly grated Romano cheese

Preparation

Set Sun Oven out to preheat. Line 3 baking racks or rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

Arrange the eggplant slices in a single layer on two of the racks. Brush both sides with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Season with salt. Arrange the tomatoes and garlic on the remaining rack. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of the oil over the tomatoes and garlic; season with salt. Stack the racks in the Sun Oven and cook until the vegetables are soft and beginning to brown, 1 1/2 to 2 hours, top racks will cook faster. Remove vegetables from the Sun Oven and cut the eggplant into pieces. When the garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze the pulp into a serving bowl. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, mashing to combine. Stir in the basil and cheese. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the garlic mixture and toss with the eggplant and tomatoes. Add reserved cooking water as needed.

Makes 4 servings.

Meatless Monday Pasta Sauce

Lentil Sauce

This easy to prepare vegetarian pasta topping is a good alternative to traditional meat sauce. Unlike most pasta sauces, it tastes better when served over whole wheat pasta than white.

Easy Sun Oven Lentil Pasta Sauce

Ingredients

1 cup dried green lentils, picked over and rinsed

2 1/2 cups water

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

Optional topping

freshly grated Parmesan cheese

chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preparation

Set Sun Oven out to preheat.

In a large pot, combine the lentils and water. Cover and cook in the Sun Oven until the lentils are tender but not falling apart, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Remove the lentils from the Sun Oven and drain. In the same pot, combine the oil, garlic, and tomato sauce. Stir in the cooked lentils. Cover and return the pot to the Sun Oven. Continue cooking until heated through and the flavors have blended. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve over whole wheat pasta or brown rice.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

 

Tuna Casserole from Food Storage

Tuna CasseroleTuna Casserole

All the ingredients in this recipe came from food storage. We rotated out the oldest items from our shelves. On a 70 degree day, the sun came out in the afternoon. We started this at 3:30PM and cooked it until 5:30PM. Temperature held at 300 degrees. The casserole was nice and bubbly hot throughout and the flavors were well blended.

Ingredients

3 – 5 oz White tuna canned in water, drained
1 – 12 oz. can cream of mushroom soup
2 – 15 oz cans of baby peas, drained
16 oz. macaroni or wide egg noodles, pre-boiled
2 TBS capers
1 – 4 oz. jar pimentos
15 oz. mayonaise
White pepper to taste

Directions

Preheat the Sun Oven® while mixing the ingredients. Mix the ingredients lightly in a bowl. Place in a greased casserole dish and top with Italian bread crumbs. Bake in the Sun Oven for two hours ’til hot and bubbly. These ingredients will make two 9×12″ casseroles. Cook one today and save the other in your refrigerator for a couple of days. It will be welcome a second time.

Solar Baked Stuffed Shells

Read more »

Super Simple Solar Sauce

Grape Tomatoes

A sunny day, a carton of grape tomatoes close to their expiration date, some fresh basil, a few cloves of garlic, and a little olive oil came together in my Sun Oven today to make a delicious, easy to prepare pasta sauce.

Sun Oven Roasted Tomato Sauce

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

14 ounces grape tomatoes

4 clove garlic, peeled

Read more »

Easy Solar Lasagna

Tea Towel

This lasagna can be assembled in the evening and stored in the fridge overnight. It will take a little longer to bake, but the flavors will be just as good.

Easy Sun Oven Lasagna

Ingredients

1 pound ground turkey

1 tablespoon olive oil, divided

1 onion, finely chopped

10 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

Read more »

Solar Lamb Pasta Sauce

Bolognese Lamb

The trick to good Bolognese is gentle heat. Try to keep the Sun Oven between 250 and 300 and let this sauce slowly simmer all day.

Sun Oven Braised Lamb Bolognese Sauce

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups meat from Basic Sun Oven Braised Lamb, shredded

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 carrots, finely chopped

2 celery stalks, finely chopped

1/2 cup dry red wine

Read more »

Solar Sauce or Dip

Roasted Orange Peppers

Substitute cream cheese for the ricotta to make a tasty dip for a crudité platter.

Sun Oven Roasted Bell Pepper Pasta Sauce

Ingredients

1 onion, finely chopped

2 orange or yellow bell peppers, seeded and chopped

1 plum tomato, chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

Read more »

Whole Wheat Pasta with Chickpeas

The past few weeks have been cold and rainy here in Southern California, so when the sun made an appearance the other day I was ready for some solar cooked grub.

The days are still short, so something that could be finished up on the stove, and served hot at dinnertime, seemed like the way to go.

This is one of the few pasta dishes that, in my opinion, is better with whole wheat pasta.

Sun Oven Chickpea Pasta Sauce

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 white onion, diced

1 carrot, diced

1 stalk celery, diced

1 clove garlic, minced

1 sprig rosemary

1 whole dried hot red pepper

2 (15-ounce) cans chickpeas

10 ounces whole wheat pasta such as shells, fusilli, or cavatappi

Read more »

corin