Our winter squash are coming in and it is soup time in our house again. For dinner tonight a made arch and creamy winter squash soup with a side of corn muffins.
If you have some winter squash you may want to try this recipe.
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 small onion chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 cups chopped winter squash (I used kabocha squash for tonight’s recipe)
- 1 pinch each sea salt and black pepper
- 1 1/2 Tbsp curry powder
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2-3 Tbsp maple syrup (can use brown sugar or coconut sugar)
- 1-2 tsp chili garlic paste (optional)
- Heat a large pot over medium heat.
- Once hot, add oil, onion, and garlic. Sauté for 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Add squash and season with a pinch each salt and pepper, curry powder, and ground cinnamon. Stir to coat. Then cover and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add coconut milk, vegetable broth, maple syrup or sugar, and chili garlic paste (optional – for heat).
- Bring to a low boil over medium heat and then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes or until squash is fork tender.
- Use an immersion blender, or transfer soup to a blender, and purée on high until creamy and smooth. If using a blender, return soup back to pot.
- Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more curry powder, salt, or sweetener as needed. Continue cooking for a few more minutes over medium heat.
- Serve as is or with garnishes of your choice.
Frosty evenings have started for the season so we had some major yard and coop cleanup to do yesterday. The long day in the yard left little time for dinner preparation and after a fair amount of physical labor we really wanted something hot and filling for dinner. Fortunately the early morning hours were a bit cold to head outside so I made a couple of loaves of Hawaiian bread that was paired with a Swiss chard and cannelloni bean soup for dinner. The semi-sweet bread paired very well with the satisfying savory soup that took less than 30 minutes to prepare.
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped or crushed
- 1 onion, diced
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp dried basil
- 4 cups vegetable stock
- 1 cup water
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cup uncooked orzo ( I use Delallo organic orzo)
- 1 bunch of Swiss chard, cut into thin ribbons. Separate and save chopped stems ( can also use bunch of kale or 3 cups of chopped spinach)
- 1 (15 ounce) can cannelloni beans, drained and rinsed
- Juice of a fresh lemon
- 2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over a medium heat. Add garlic, onions and chopped Swiss chard stems, and cook until onions become translucent.
- Stir thyme and basil into onion mixture and cook until fragrant (about 1 minute).
- Stir vegetable stock, bay leaves and 1 cup of water into pot mixture. Bring mixture to a boil.
- Add orzo to the pot and reduce the heat so that the mixture simmers. Cook until the orzo is tender (10-12 minutes).
- Add cannelloni beans, Swiss chard and lemon juice to the pot and simmer for another 3-4 minutes
- Turn off heat and stir in chopped parsley, salt and pepper. Serve with a nice bread.
Hope you enjoy the soup as much as we did.
The unusually warm weather turned this weekend and we were given a rainy/sleety Saturday and Sunday. Just the type of weather to kick-off our soup and stew season. To welcome in the season I made a pantry soup of butternut squash, parsnip and apples, and a basil focaccia bread for Sunday dinner. We enjoyed the meal so much that I wanted to share the recipes with you.
Butternut Squash, Parsnip and Apple Soup
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- 1 large white onion, chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 4 large parsnips, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 large butternut squash, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
- 2 medium tart apples, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
- 4 1/2 cups vegetable stock
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Heat olive oil in large dutch oven.
- Saute the chopped onions in the olive oil for 5 minutes or until soft.
- Add crushed garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Stir in cumin and saute until fragrant.
- Add chopped parsnips, butternut squash and apples to the pot and stir all ingredients together.
- Add stock and thyme and cook until vegetables have softened.
- Use an immersion blender to smooth the soup.
- Garnish with a bit of parsley.
Basil Focaccia Bread
- Herb oil
- 2 tsp dried basil
- 5 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 tsp sweet paprika
- 4 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 cups water
- 3 Tbs olive oil
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- Mix the dried basil, extra virgin olive oil, and sweet paprika in a small bowl and let steep for at least 30minutes.
- Dissolve the sugar in 2 cups of warm water. Add the yeast and stir. Allow to sit until the mixture becomes frothy.
- Stir flour and salt together in a large bowl. Mix in olive oil and yeast mixture. Mix until dough is smooth, elastic and slightly sticky.
- Cover bowl with a towel or plastic wrap and let rise for 2 hours or until dough has doubled in size.
- Remove from bowl and flatten on a floured work surface. Divide into two equal parts.
- Spray two jelly roll pans with oil and place dough in pans.
- Gently work dough out to the edges of the pans and then split 1/2 of the herb oil across the trays of dough.
- With your fingers, indent the dough, keeping the bread approximately 1/2 thick.
- Let the dough leaven for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Pour the remaining herb oil on the loves, dimple lightly and sprinkle with salt.
- Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Yesterday we spent the day taking one of the cars in for servicing and running errands. These activities required that we drive a little over an hour from our home to one of the larger villages, so we decided to treat ourselves to lunch (and us up part a gift card that we received for Christmas). When we drove up to the Olive Garden in Keene we noticed that some snowmobile drivers had that same idea about where to have lunch (please excuse my finger in the lower right of the photo — I was using my cell phone to snap the picture.)
Lunch was nice and the conversations interesting. We got home just in time to feed the animals and then head out to a friends for dinner and socializing. Robertine made a lovely vegetarian curry stew that was enjoyed by all. I commend her for trying a new recipe…
This week I will be cooking some old favorites, trying a new dish or two and modifying a comfort food that hasn’t been seen on our table in at least 10 years. Some of the items that we will be enjoying this week are:
Lentil Souffle — A light easy to create main dish. Great served with a nice salad.
Black eyed Peas and Kale Soup — the recipe for this hardy soup can be fond on The Whinery. The only modification that I made to the recipe was using dried black eyed pies that I soaked and pre-cooked instead of the canned version, and served the dish with some hot-water cornbread. I really love the combination of herbs and spices that she uses in her recipes.
Curry Chickpea Hummus with Raisins — I made this lovey hummus to be served with fresh vegetables for lunches this week. I made slight modifications to the recipe: I did not puree the currents (I wanted some texture) and I used a hot curry power (we like spice in our foods). The recipe can be found on the Plant Powered Kitchen blog.
For tonight’s dinner I have modified an old recipe to create a beefless stew using Gardein beefless tips and replacing beef broth with mushroom broth (vegetable broth would also work). You dredge and sear the tips just like you would for beef, but they are added to the vegetable mixture in the last 15-20 minutes of cooking.
We are running low on bread so later this week I will be making some more sprouted loaves using sprouted quinoa and chia seeds. The seeds need to sit in the sprouter for another few days.
Woke up to a beautiful day, fresh sow on the ground, bright sunshine and deer and wild turkeys in the yard. What a great day to spend in the kitchen preparing foods for the week.
This week we will enjoy:
Some fresh baked breads – made a sprouted grain bread for this week.
Curried red lentil soup with chickpeas and quinoa – I found this lovely gluten-free vegan soup on the Zesty Cook blog. I replaced the yogurt with cashew cram and the chicken broth with a nice vegetable stock.
Lentil meatless loaf a favorite in my house — shows up on the table about once a month. I found this yummy gluten-free, vegan recipe on the Healthful Pursuit blog.
Vegetarian chili with winter squash and wild mushroom – Recipe to be posted soon.
For a sweet treat Grain-free banana cranberry & lemon breakfast cake. This tasty little gluten-free cake provided the perfect balance between sweet and tart.
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 1 cup ripe mashed bananas (approximately 2-3 bananas)
- 1/2 cup coconut oil
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 cup agave
- 6 tsp Ener-G egg replacer (you can use 4 eggs if you prefer)
- 8 tbs warm water
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 cup fresh cranberries
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and grease a 8 inch square baking dish with oil of your choice. Set aside.
- Mix the egg replacer and warm water in a small bowl and set aside.
- In a medium sized bowl mix together the coconut flour, almond flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Mix together well with a fork to decrease any clumps.
- Add the vanilla and agave to the egg replacer and whisk well.
- Add mashed banana into your egg mixture and whisk together until well combined.
- Pour wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and stir together until it is mixed thoroughly.
- Add the melted coconut oil and stir once again until the batter is completely mixed together.
- Fold in the lemon zest and fresh cranberries into the batter. They should be evenly distributed throughout.
- Spoon the batter into a greased baking pan and spread it out evenly.
- Bake it for 40-45 minutes or until the top is golden brown and then center when pierced with a toothpick or a knife comes out cleanly.
- Remove from the oven and let it cool for 20 minutes or so.
Adapted from a recipe at So Lets Hang Out
Life has been so busy around my house recently that there has been little time to make tasty meals. Thank goodness the freezer was full of items that could just be taken out and warmed. This weekend I did work in making the bread for the next few weeks, but that was about it. Monday we had pesto made over the summer and lentil meatballs over rice pasta, but with the amount that was left on the table I knew that I needed to make something fresh today. I pulled out an old standby recipe that is healthy, tasty and low calorie — a carrot soup that I haven’t made in ages… good thing the soup was low in calories, because I served it with grilled cheese sandwiches that were served on the pumpkin-rosemary bread with biga that I made with teff flour (from the gluten-free & vegan bread book) — which wasn’t that low in calories, but oh so tasty.
Since the soup only takes about 15 minutes to prepare and another 25 minutes to cook, I thought I would share the recipe with you.
- 2 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 tbsp curry power
- 2 pounds carrots, chopped
- 4 cups vegetable broth (I like to use mushroom broth)
- Heat the oil in a medium to large pot over medium heat.
Saute onion until tender and translucent.
- Stir the curry powder into the onion.
- Add the chopped carrots, and stir until the carrots are coated.
- Pour in the vegetable broth, and simmer until the carrots are soft.
- Transfer te mixture to a blinder, and puree until smooth.
- Pour back into the pot, and thin with water if you prefer a thinner soup.
We are just starting to recover from heavy snows and temperatures in the negative digits. The snows provided promises of lots of outdoor fun, the wonderful sunshine beckoned us outdoors, but the negative temperatures plus the wind chill of -25 degrees kept us in the house with the wood stove burning and the kitchen full of wonderful aromas.
Driveway after a quick plow
A little fun with the dogs between shoveling activities
View of the back yard out the kitchen window.
Heavy snows are a bit much for the young trees. Will have to cut this one down in the spring.
The items that we cooked for this week are:
and for our sweet tooth I made a gluten-free blueberry crumble with some of last years blueberries.
After being treated to such a nice day yesterday I decided to make a special, light and tasty meal for this evening. Tonight we will be having grilled shrimp that were marinated in a sweet chilli sauce and watermelon gazpacho. What a great way to end a warm and humid day of yard and house work.
- 8 cups diced seedless watermelon
- 1 medium cucumber, seeded ans finely diced
- 1/2 red or yellow bell pepper, diced
- 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 1/4 cup parsley, chopped
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons red onion, minced
- 1 tablespoon chilli oil
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Mix watermelon, cucumber, bell pepper, basil, parsley, vinegar, red onion, oils and salt in a large bowl.
- Reserve 2 cups of the mixture.
- Puree the rest of the mixture in batches and transfer to another bowl.
- Stir in the reserved mixture.
- Chill for at least an hour prior to serving.
My partner has been asking for potato leek soup for the past three weeks so I finally broke down and made it today. This is not a good time of year to buy leeks, but when you get asked repeatedly for something that is so simple to make you give and pay $2.99 a pound for leeks that are so thick that half of each unit has to be thrown into the compost heap because the top sections are to tough to use.
- 3 tbsp butter
- 2-3 leeks finely sliced (a mandoline is very help in this step and the the potatoes)
- 1 medium or large onion, chopped
- 6-8 potatoes thinly sliced (to leave the skins on or not is up to you — since the skins are the only part of a potato with nutritional value I leave them on)
- 3 1/2 cup of vegetable broth (or enough to barely cover potatoes)
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat then add onions ans leeks. Cook, stirring, until onions are limp and just slightly brown.
- Add sliced potatoes to saucepan then pour in enough vegetable broth to just barely covers the potatoes. Continue cooking over a medium heat until potatoes are tinder. Using a masher or blender, mash the potatoes until desired consistency is reached.
- Add parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve with spelt flat bread and salad, or if you are really feeling energetic serve the soup with Caramelized Fennel & Goat Cheese Flatbread (this is how I will serve the dish tomorrow).
Here is a recipe that will use up a lot of the onions left at the end of winter. The recipe takes a bit of time to cook but is will worth the effort and is best cooked in an electric fry pan.
- 98-10 large sweet onions
- 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
- 1 1/4 cups apple cider
- white wine
- 2 tbls butter
- thyme and basil to taste
- salt and pepper to taste
- toasted crusty bread
- hard cheese
- Slice onions thinly and sprinkle with salt.
- Melt butter in pan and cook onions on low until caramelized (cover pan).
- Cover cooked onions with white wine and simmer until the onions thicken (5-10 minutes).
- Add vegetable broth, apple cider and seasoning and cook for another 10 minutes.
- Toast slices of crusty bread.
- Place slices of toasted bread on bowls of soup then top with cheese.
- Place bowls under broiler until melted
- ½ lb. mushrooms
- ½ c chopped onions
- 2 tbs butter or oil
- 2 tbs rice flour
- 2 tbs curry powder
- 4 c vegetable stock or vegetarian chicken stock
- 2 lb cooked and mashed pumpkin or sweet potatoes
- 1 tbs honey
- 1 c coconut milk
Saute onions & mushrooms in butter. Stir in curry powder and flour, sauté until rice flour is incorporated. Add the rest of the ingredients, cook until heated through
Turned out to be a rainy cold fall weekend here in the Upper Valley and the hard frosts have started so the vegetable gardens had to be taken out. What do you do with all of the vegetables make soups and the appropriate accompaniments. Today we made curry cauliflower soup and whole wheat bread which helped to use up some of our harvest. Tomorrow we move on to spiced carrot soup and parsnip fritters.
Curry Cauliflower Soup
1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 C finely diced yellow onion
2 carrots, diced small
2 potatoes, cubed small
1 C finely diced celery
1 tbsp. hot curry powder (reduce by half or use regular curry powder if you do not like spicy)
1 tsp. coriander ground
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
6 C broth of choice (I use vegetable broth — great way to use skins and misc. bits from the garden)
- preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Toss the cauliflower with 1 tbsp. of olive oil and 1/4 tsp. of salt, then spread in an even layer on the prepared pan. Bake until the cauliflower is tender, about 25 minutes. (Roasting cauliflower avoids the sulfur-smell caused when steaming, and also produces an unbelievably sweet flavor.)
- While the cauliflower is roasting, heat he remaining olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat, then add the onion and a pinch of salt and saute until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the carrots, celery, potatoes, and small amount salt and saute until the vegetables begin to brown, about 12 minutes.
- Add the curry powder, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and another pinch of salt and and stir until the spices have coated the vegetables. Pour in 1/2 C of the broth to de-glaze the pan, then cook until the liquid is reduced by half. Remove from the heat.
- Pour 3 C of the remaining broth into a blender, then add half of the vegetables and roasted cauliflower. Blend until smooth, then pour the mixture into a soup pot and repeat the process with the remaining 2 1/2 C broth and the remaining vegetables and cauliflower. For a thinner consistency, add another cup of broth. (Blend all of the mixture and broth If you prefer cream soups.)
- Gently reheat the soup over low heat. You may want to add a spritz of lemon juice, or additional salt, to taste.