Updated Review of the Pumpkin Pie Chia Pudding (from yesterday):
Well...after sitting overnight and all day long today in the fridge, I still found that the chia seeds had a very slight little crunch to them -- kinda sorta like poppy seeds in a way -- not bad, but enough where I felt like I needed to chew my pudding a little. So, I decided if you can't "beat the crunch"..."join it"! I put a serving of the pudding in a little bowl, stirred in some chopped walnuts and a tablespoon of unsweetened coconut....and voila -- I had pudding that was SUPPOSED to be a bit crunchy! :-) This took it from the "6.5 out of 10" rating that I gave it yesterday to a "7.5 to 8 out of 10 today". I would also suggest not over-sweetening the pudding when you make it because you can easily stir in more stevia, if necessary. Last night I thought I might want it a bit sweeter...but this evening the sweetness was perfect for me. I tend to be a bit more conservative when using stevia because too much can easily ruin your recipe. To sum this all up: Would I make it again? Yes. I will also experiment with making different flavors of pudding as well. I even think this recipe could easily take on more pumpkin in it too and may try that next time. It was an extremely quick little dessert to put together and you can easily layer it with different nuts, fruit, etc. and make little parfaits. Oh...I almost forgot -- in case you were wondering, I found no chia seeds sprouting from the top of my head this morning! ;-) "Cha Cha Cha Chia"!
Yellow Cheddar Squash Casserole
5-6 cups yellow squash, sliced (I used 6 cups)
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt
1/2 to 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
Dash cayenne pepper, optional
4 tablespoons butter, divided
1 cup almond flour, divided
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
4 eggs, beaten (I used 2 eggs plus 1/2 cup Egg Beaters)
1/2 cup milk or half-n-half
In a large non-stick skillet, saute yellow squash and onion in 2 tablespoons of butter (do not add water). Make sure all cooking liquids are cooked off. Stir-fry until tender (cover for a bit, if necessary, to help cook it more quickly); transfer cooked squash and onions to a medium mixing bowl. In a separate bowl or glass measuring cup, beat eggs, milk and add salt, pepper, cayenne to taste; set aside.
In a small bowl, mix 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese with 1/2 cup almond flour; toss with fork until well mixed. Add the almond flour/cheese mixture to the bowl of squash; toss and combine well. Pour beaten egg and milk mixture into the squash mixture and combine well.
In a separate small bowl, place remaining 1/2 cup of almond flour and remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Cut butter into the almond flour (like you do when you make the topping for a fruit crisp). Once butter is cut in and the mixture is crumbly, add remaining 1 cup of cheddar cheese and toss well. Pour squash mixture into a lightly greased baking or casserole dish; top with the almond flour/butter/cheddar mixture and sprinkle with black pepper, if desired. Bake in a 375 degree oven for approximately 35 minutes, or until golden brown and done. (To further crisp the topping, run under the broiler for a few minutes before removing from oven).
*Note: You can add more cheese to the casserole if you like. Typical squash casseroles use 1 to 1-1/2 cups of milk along with the egg mixture. I reduced the liquid to 1/2 cup of half-n-half since the almond flour doesn't absorb as much as the usual "52 Ritz crackers" that would be in the original recipe. You may want to add a little more liquid if you want it more moist. I found that 1/2 cup was perfect for our tastes (I used 1/4 cup the first time I made it and that was good too, but increased it to 1/2 cup in this recipe to make it a little more moist -- it is really a personal preference).