I can't decide if I'm excited or stressed out.
My parents are coming to visit in exactly a week!
That shouldn't be such a big deal should it?
Well, the things is that they haven't traveled to visit me since my 6 1/2 year old turned three and we surprised him at Disney World. (I always visit them.)
So, naturally, I want to make it a nice visit.
My house is a wreck and I haven't even though about decorating.
Then there is food.
Regardless of where we are visiting (there place or mine) I'm always in charge of the food.
The stress inducing problem?
I'm not really up for my normal “I'll cook for three weeks and everything will be perfect ” holiday cooking.
I can't think straight and planning a menu for a multi-week visit seems overwhelming. (Even though this is typically the part that I typically love like a shopaholic loves Black Friday.)
I told my husband that I didn't have a single idea of what to make during their visit.
He says “Don't you have an Evernote database of like 3,000 recipes that you saved because you liked them.”
I look at him blankly.
“Pinterest? Your website? One of the websites you read? One of your many cookbooks?”
“Yeah but nothing sounds good. ”
He smartly just smiled and nodded.
The truth is this geriatric pregnant lady is tired and would be just fine skipping the whole cooking for the holidays thing and just skip to the eating part.
I actually mentioned to my husband that I was pretty sure a couple of local restaurants did catering.
He didn't share my enthusiasm for the idea.
I'm sure I will get it all done – in a much simpler than normal fashion – but today I'm sharing with you one thing that I know we will be having.
I love breakfast casseroles, but for some reason I never think to make them any time other than Christmas morning.
It's a sin, really because few things are better than the smell of something savory baking in your oven on a weekend morning.
This Hash Brown and Quinoa Casserole is gooey and delicious and surprisingly got a nutrition grade of A from the nutritional software I use. (Something that is typically reserved for oil free quinoa salads!)
Best of all? It's so yummy I'd eat it even if it wasn't a bit healthy.
It makes a lot but if you have a small crowd don't worry about that – it keeps well for a couple of days and the leftovers are divine.
What's on your holiday menu?
- 4 ounces (vegan) Mexican chorizo, casings removed
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup enchilada sauce
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 3 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and shredded
- 1/2 cup onion, finely grated
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 2 eggs beaten or flax eggs
- 4 ounces Daiya cheddar or cheddar cheese (1 cup)
- For Serving: Salsa, Guacamole, (vegan) Sour Cream, Avocado Slices, Tomatoes
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
- Spray an oven safe 10 inch skillet with canola oil and heat to medium high. Add chorizo and cook for 5 minutes, crumbling with the back of a spoon. Add garlic and cook for one minute longer. Remove from pan and combine with enchilada sauce.
- Meanwhile, if using flax eggs combine 2 tablespoons of ground flax seeds with 6 tablespoons of warm water. Stir well and set aside.
- Spray pan again with canola oil. (You want it to be well covered.) In a medium bowl combine cooked quinoa, shredded potatoes, onion, salt, pepper and eggs. Add quinoa mixture into pan and press with the back of a large spoon or spatula. Cook for 10 minutes – do not stir. Pour enchilada sauce mixture on top of potatoes and top with shredded cheese.
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, covering loosely with foil towards the end to ensure that the cheese doesn't burn. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and cut into wedges. Serve warm with desired toppings.