Monthly Archives: September 2011

Squash Soup

Life has been crazy busy lately. This past Thursday though Sunday I was in the Catskills looking at sedimentary rocks… I know fascinating right?

So I had to turn a bunch of work in early for the classes I was going to miss and when I got back I had an exam on Tuesday and another one today. Tonight I had literally no homework… which to be honest was quite strange given the past month of endless work. So I enjoyed some home cooked Mid-Week Middle Eastern with some fellow foodies. The spread was rediculous… falafel, tahini, hummus, pitas, cucumbers with dill, cous cous and stuffed mushrooms… it was all fantastic and I have some lovely ladies to thank for it (all I did was wash some mushrooms and a few dishes)

Anywho, this post is so overdue, I made it with my dad 2 weeks ago. This is his recipe, and it is fantastic, especially for this time of year. I also made some whole wheat Italian bread with basil to go along with it in my mom’s bread maker (that I got her for Christmas last year)

Squash Soup


2 Butternut squash
1  Acorn squash
1 32 oz container of veggie stock

1 large onion diced

1 apple, tart and crisp like a granny smith
1 jalapeño (Seeds removed and chopped up)
1 to 2 teaspoons black pepper
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 cup (fat free/low fat) half and half
1 to 2 teaspoons of brown sugar
dollop of sour cream

Preheat oven to 350. Cut squash in half and remove seeds. Spray inside with olive oil cooking spray. Sprinkle black pepper on inside. Bake, cut side down, on a foil covered baking sheet for 30 to 45 minutes.


While squash is baking place stock, jalapeño, chopped onion, black pepper and crushed red pepper to a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer  for ½ an hour.
When squash is soft, remove from oven and scoop squash out of its skins.. careful, it’s hot. Add the squash to the stock. Add the brown sugar. Continue to simmer for 30 to 45 minutes. Remove from heat and use a hand mixer to beat mixture until smooth. Then add the half and half slowly while mixing.
Serve with a scoop of sour cream on top.
It tastes better if it sits overnight in the fridge.

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Goats Cheese and Kale Stuffed Mushrooms

I love coming home to my parent’s house. When I walked in the door on Friday, right around dinner time, my dad was unloading groceries. He had picked up a bunch of my favorite things… portabella mushrooms, kale (everyone could use a dark leafy green in their life), Greek yogurt, a jar of peanut butter and the ingredients to make butternut squash soup, one of my all time favorite soups.  Last time I had talked to him on the phone he told me about these mushroom caps that were stuffed with kale and goats cheese that he had a party that he and my mom went to. He decided to get me the ingredients so I could try to recreate them. What a Dad! Not to mention my stress level has decreased exponentially since I got home (and taking the weekend off from work doesn’t hurt either).

Kale and Cheese stuffed Portabella Mushrooms

Makes 2 stuffed caps

2 large portabella mushroom caps, stems removed and ribs scooped out

2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoons of olive oil

1 clove of garlic minced

Black pepper to taste

Red pepper flakes to taste

½ a bunch of Kale, chopped or cut in a chiffonade

3 tablespoons of water

2 tablespoons of cheese, preferably goats cheese but I used feta this time because it was on hand

Preheat grill to medium heat. Rub 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar over the surface of the mushrooms, both inside and out. Place on the grill rib side down. While the mushrooms grill, preheat a skillet to medium heat and add oil. Once oil is heated add the minced garlic. Sauté for 2 mins then add in chopped kale, water, red pepper flakes and black pepper. Cover and let wilt for 5-7 minutes, stirring it occasionally. Flip the mushrooms and grill on the other side for 2-3 minutes. Then remove from heat and fill with wilted kale. Top each with a tablespoon of cheese and place back on the grill until the cheese melts. Remove from heat and drizzle with ½ tablespoon of balsamic vinegar each. Serve with a sharp knife.

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Blueberry Muffins

Apologies for the lack of posting but this semester is going to be pretty busy. It’s halfway through week 2 and I’m already overwhelmed… so much for a fun senior year. Even though I’ve been super busy, Mark and I have been eating really well. I woke up at 7:30 last Thursday and went for a run and on the way home stopped by the farmers market before class. For under $20 I raked in quite a haul: 1 massive eggplant, 1 yellow squash, 1 zucchini, 3 ears of corn, 2 pints of blueberries, 1 pint of peaches, 1 quart of heirloom cherry tomatoes, 1 quart of sweet peppers, 1 super spicy pepper, and a loaf of pumpkin bread. Not too shabby if I do say so myself. These veggies have worked their way into some great food (eggplant parm, stuffed mushrooms, curry, tacos, stir-fry, veggie pizza, muffins, and still going)

 

Since blueberries are nearing the end of their season and I bought probably the last 2 pints of summer at the farmers market, it’s only fair to pay them a proper homage… and bake them into muffins. Not just any muffins but to-die-for blueberry muffins with a streusel crumble.  The streusel topping, though a little unhealthy, totally makes these muffins.

 

I probably shouldn’t admit this but I ran into a few snafus, I thought we had enough sugar and baking powder but we didn’t so I had to make some adjustments. I’ll provide you with the actual recipe (sans substitutions) that has been fool proof for the past 100 or so times I’ve made these muffins. Mark asked me as I was going through pictures for this post when I was going to make these again… we just ran out of muffins yesterday… yeah they’re that good.

Blueberry Muffins

Makes 8 Muffins

1 ½ cups of flour (I usually use half whole wheat or whole wheat pastry if you can find it)

¾ cups white sugar

Dash of salt

2 ½ teaspoons of baking powder

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 egg, or egg substitute equivalent

1/3 cup of milk (I like to use almond milk)

1-1   ½ cups of blueberries (I always opt for more berries)

½ cup of white sugar or raw sugar

1/3 cup of flour

¼ cup of butter, cubed

1 ½ teaspoons of ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 400°C. Line muffin tin with liners, or grease the muffin cups.

Combine 1 ½ cups of flour, ¾ cups of sugar, salt and baking powder in a medium size bowl. Place oil in a 1 cup measuring cup; add the egg to the cup. Fill the cup up the remainder of the way with the milk.

Mix this into the flour mixture. Toss the blueberries in 1 tablespoon of flour (this prevents them from sinking to the bottom of the muffin during baking). Gently fold the blueberries into the batter. Fill the muffin cups up to the top.

Mix together the ½ cup of sugar, 1/3 cup of flour, cinnamon and butte. I find its best to mash it together with a fork. Sprinkle this mixture over the tops of the muffins. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through in the middle (use a toothpick to test).

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