Tag Archives: butternut squash

Cowboy cookoffs…

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If you don’t care how your food looks–Chili is for you!
I find it impossible to make chili look good in a picture, it has this ‘canned dog food’ appeal. But the  soul food is popular for games, tailgating, and is perfect for cold weather. Just the amount of spice should prevent several colds.
As one of our local fire departments is participating in a cook-off for the hot Tex-Mex American Cowboy dish, my own memory of tailgating with bean chillis was rather painful, so I kept avoiding them. Today, I am convinced that the beans were not soaked long enough, not cooked right, or maybe contained too much grease in combination with spices. The official Texas State dish, by the way, does not contain beans, even though chili beans are likely named after it… 

Yesterday, I found out that there are safer, fart-free chilis, very easy, pressure cooker fast that will not give you the blows for days to come, tastes are surprisingly real as a vegan version. Sorry Texas, no cows compromised for this one. Also environmentally friendly, it uses dry beans and fresh pumpkin mash, which saves at least 3-5 cans; You can make up that extra prep-time easily in using a pressure cooker. See recipe

Mindful Thanksgiving

KaleDSC_5139 For an alien, Thanksgiving is a strange ritual. Based on harvest festivals, to unify a Nation beyond religion, every year in every US household an imaginary feast is staged, that native Americans supposedly held for starving Pilgrims.  …For most Americans today, that means eating Turkey with a given order of sides, which makes Thanksgiving about consuming a bird, which has been industrially altered since Pilgrim’s times. Likewise all our food species, plant or animal alike, have been modified for optimum output, scientifically enhanced for maximized industry gain. Thanksgiving to me is not only being thankful to have food on the table, but also being mindful about what has happened to our food and what might happen in the future. Continue reading

First Holiday Flavors

SconeDSC_5046It is that Pumpkin time again… Leaves are red and yellow, temperatures just shy of freezing point and hot soups are making a comeback. Warm hugs of sugar and pumpkin spices and a warm kitchen are so comforting…  ah, pumpkin scones. When I saw this gluten free recipe I had to veganize it even though I had only sweet potatoes instead of pumpkins. I did not have all of the alternative flours either, if you have a grain container it helps to make quick brown rice or millet flour for part of the recipe. Flavorful, highly recommended and going fast. See recipe.

Mighty green Midgets

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Our CSA delivery has just started and we are loaded. This year we are sharing on a bi-montly schedule with a nice neighbor. Easier sharing, provided you have a big fridge. A good way to work leafy greens of all kind is steaming them and then fold them into empanadas with butternut squash as a sweet component. We like little ones and whole wheat dough, which I haven’t seen ready-made yet; so we made our own dough, which is a little more work, but you will be rewarded with easy to handle, handsome dough. Our newest tool is a tortilla press, which helps turning doughballs into small disks. Just some touchup and you can fill them. Better with two person handling… See recipe

Indian Rice

CurryDSC_3171.1Wild Rice is native in North America and China. The long grain has a dark, chewy outer skin with a delicate inner core and a nutty vegetal taste. It is a cousin to white rice, but is higher in protein than other grains and has recently gained popularity as local gluten free speciality in the US.

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Adding crunch

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Using contrast in a dish, you can dress up a very smooth soup with a crunchy element. Crunch is traditionally added by either using naturally crunchy vegetables, such as carrot slices; or roasted ingredients that add flavor, such as bread crumbs or bacon, grains, such as popped amaranth, or fried vegetables, such as onions. When I made a variation of my butternut squash soup, I needed something interesting, and added crunch and flavor by dressing the soup with quickly roasted potato mini cubes. See recipe here.

Pantry Cleanup

‘Shop your own pantry’ is a campaign to use overlooked food items that you have already at home to save on weekly food shopping–a healthy way to start lent and for us to empty the fridge before our vacation.
Barley, a pantry staple is an excellent source of soluble and insoluble dietary fiber. Continue reading

Soup of the day

You know a good recipe source, when it is quoted in several books. Candle Cafe and Candle 79 have great recipes and cookbooks, that are simply so good, that they are referenced by other authors. This particular recipe for a velvety smooth black bean soup is a variation from the Candle 79 restaurant. Continue reading

Wild Rice and Squash Salad

Thanksgiving is around the corner, I have been testing alternative recipes for a stuffing as I don’t like traditional stuffings with stale bread. This rice salad can be done in different ways. It gets more exotic with black rice. Wild red rice may cook faster. For the nutty ingredient, I used some beech nuts, which we had found during another Sunday morning run, however roasted pumpkin seeds fit the theme. Peeled beech nuts conserve surprisingly well, dry and cold in the refrigerator. Roasted carefully, they will shed their brown skin and become more digestible. Get the recipe

 

Radiant autumn colors

The giant pumpkins. Pumpkins and squashes are native in North America. Imagine autumn or Thanksgiving without the golden orange food and decor. Pumpkin pies, spices and soups are sold with pictures of cinderella pumpkins, the best flavor however, comes from butternut squash,  sugar pumpkin or even sweet potatoes. The following recipe is very quick to make and has a subtle fruit flavor. It makes a grand Holiday appetizer with a garnish of veg. sour cream. See recipe