Split Pea Soup with Barley and Carrots
Welcome back, and Happy New Year! Yeah, I know we are well into the New Year, but this is my first post of this 365 day block. It’s good to be back! This week the members of the 38 Power Foods blog group are cooking up peas, and I’m starting off with a favorite comfort food for many people: split pea soup.
Lake Mendocino in Ukiah, California
Like other legumes, dried peas are high in protein and fiber. One cup of dried peas has 65.01% of your daily fiber needs. They are a good source of soluble fiber, which will help to lower cholesterol, and they are also gluten-free, low-fat, and tasty, too!
I yearly make the 16-hour trek from Arizona to Northern California to visit my brothers, who live above Lake Mendocino, in the town of Ukiah. My family and I drive on the long, straight and desolate highway 5 that runs through Central California. The saving grace is that we often stop at Pea Soup Anderson’s for a bowl of their famous split pea soup, though in my opinion it was better before they changed the recipe; but it still tastes good after a long car ride. Another restaurant, California Pizza Kitchen, makes a good vegan split pea soup with barley and carrots. After they puree or mash the peas, they add bits of cooked barley and diced carrots—yum! This vegan recipe today is an homage to their soup, and I think I have managed to capture the look and taste. Make it! It’s easy, and eating split pea soup is a fun, healthy habit to get into!
Cooking Time: 45 minutes Servings: 8 Yield: about 2 quarts
2 cups split peas
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1-1/2 sticks celery, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup diced carrots
1/3 cup dried barley, one cup cooked (barley is not gluten free)
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon Tamari soy
Salt to taste
Black Pepper to taste
1. Using a large stock pot, sauté the onion in the olive oil until it is translucent.
2. In a large pot add 8 cups of water and bring it to a boil. Get a smaller pot, fill it with 4 cups of water and bring it to a boil.
3. When the water comes to a boil add the peas and the bay leaves to the large pot, and add the barley to the small pot. Cook each pot 40 to 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the peas break part easily, and the barley is tender.
4. While the peas are cooking, dice the carrots into 1/3-inch cubes and then cook them in a small pot of salted water until they are tender. Drain the water and set the carrots aside.
5. When the peas are tender, remove the bay leaves and discard them, and put an immersion blender into the pot and blend the peas until smooth. Strain the barley, and add it to the soup along with the carrots and the Tamari. Add salt and pepper to taste.
*Note – Don’t worry if you don’t have an immersion blender; just whisk the soup well. The peas will fall apart, but there will still be small bits of the onion and celery.
Power Foods: 150 delicious recipes with the 38 healthiest ingredients
The World’s Healthiest Foods
If you are a blogger and would like to take part in our group blogging about Power Foods: 150 Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients, (from the editors at Martha Stewart’s Living Magazine) we’d love to have your company. Contact: Mireya(at)myhealthyeatinghabits.com for details.
Check out what these other bloggers have cooked up! Alyce - More Time at the Table, Ansh - Spice Roots, Casey –SweetSav Jeanette - Jeanette’s Healthy Living, Martha - Simple-Nourished-Living, Minnie – The Lady 8 Home, Mireya - My Healthy Eating Habits
This posted can be seen at Full Plate Thursday and Pennywise Platter
Broccoli and Corn Soup
This week the Power Foods blog group celebrates broccoli. The editors of the book say, “If broccoli were sold in a drugstore you’d probably need a prescription.” The vegetable is a cruciferous, and belongs to the cabbage family along with Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, kale, collards, and bok choy. Broccoli is good for detoxifying the body, lowering cholesterol, and it contains anti-cancer nutrients, and anti-inflammatory nutrients. Just one cup of this raw food contains over 100% of your daily needs for vitamin C and K.
Cathedral of Leon
I don’t know about you but I can easily eat a cup of steamed broccoli. And I had a very good friend, a cat named Myrtle, who didn’t care much for people food, but she loved cooked broccoli and cauliflower—couldn’t get enough of it. Cats are pretty smart, and she must have known that there was something good for her in it.
In Spain, where I am now, broccoli is a new kid on the block. People have really just started using it in the past 5 to 6 years. The soup I’ve made today is quick to put together and it delicious to eat. Hope you enjoy it! I thought you might also be interested in seeing a couple of pictures from my husband’s home town of León, here in Spain.
Cathedral of Leon – Stained Glass
The town of Leon has a population of about 133,000 people. It’s amazing to walk through the streets of this beautiful town and see the architecture and to imagine the secrets and the history of the town. It’s definitely a place to put on your bucket list.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
1-1/2 to 2 pounds broccoli, tops and stems
1 ear fresh corn
1 medium onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 Bay leaf
1 tablespoon Bragg’s Amino Acids, or, 1 Tbsp. light soy sauce, or, Tamari soy
Salt and white pepper to taste
1. Peel and chop the onion. Pour the 2 tablespoons of oil into a 6 to 8 quart size stockpot. Sauté the onion until it begins to caramelize.
2. Peel the broccoli stalk and discard the outer portion. Cut the broccoli tops into flowerets, and cut the stalks horizontally into ½-inch slices.
3. Remove the cornhusk and silk threads from the corn, and cut the corn off the cob. Add it, the broccoli, and 1 teaspoon of salt to the onions, and sauté another 5 minutes.
4. Add the bay leaf and cover with water by 1 ½ to 2 inches of water. Cook until the Broccoli is very tender; approximately 45 minutes. You may need to add more water as it cooks. In the last five minutes remove the bay leaf, blend the soup well in small batches until the soup is smooth, and then add the Tamari, and salt and pepper to taste.
Check out what these other bloggers have cooked up!
Alyce - More Time at the Table, Ansh - Spice Roots, Bambi - Adobo Down Under, Casey - Bookcase Foodie Jeanette - Jeanette’s Healthy Living, Jill - Saucy Cooks Martha - Simple-Nourished-Living, Mireya - My Healthy Eating Habits, Sarah - Everything in the Kitchen Sink,
If you are a blogger and would like to take part in our group blogging about Power Foods: 150 Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients,(from the editors at Martha Stewart’s Living Magazine) we’d love to have your company. Contact: Mireya(at)myhealthyeatinghabits.com for details.
Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients
The World’s Healthiest Foods
White Bean Soup with Pan Roasted Asparagus and Cilantro Pesto
I learned to appreciate legumes in Spain, at my in-law’s house because she usually makes them twice a week. My husband’s mother is a great cook, even though she says otherwise. And she’s especially talented with legumes—her white beans are terrific! A nice thing about white beans is that they are versatile. You can use white beans in a variety of ways: casseroles, chili, salads, even desserts. It should be no surprise that they’re good for you. They’re a great source of fiber and protein they have no cholesterol. I’m always doing something with them, too; Cornucopia Cassoulet, White Bean Dip, Wicked Vegan White Beans, and now today’s recipe.
This week, bloggers taking part The Food Matter’s Project are making Mark Bittman’s recipe for roasted Asparagus and White Bean Soup with Parmesan; my dish is inspired by his. AdrienneEats is hosting the project this week, and you can find Mark’s original recipe there. You can also check this link to see what the other participants have come up with.
Servings: 6 to 8
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour, to 1 hour and 15 minutes
Total Time: 9 hours (This includes 8 hours of unattended pre-soak of beans)
If you’ve been following me you know that I always make beans from scratch. This means planning ahead to pre-soak them. It’s best to start soaking the beans the night before cooking, but you can also get them soaking the same day, as long as they soak about 8 hours. The recipe has 4 easy basic steps: Make the soup, make the pesto, pan fry the asparagus, and then garnish the soup with the asparagus and the pesto.
Ingredients for the Soup:
4 tablespoons olive oil
3 to 4 leeks, white part only, well rinsed and thinly sliced
2 teaspoons minced garlic
Salt and pepper
½ cup dry white wine (optional)
¾ pound pre-soaked white beans, navy or great Northern
6 cups fresh vegetable, or chicken stock
1 pound asparagus, peeled if thick
Ingredients for the Cilantro Pesto:
6 tablespoons virgin olive oil
2 medium cloves garlic, (not elephant garlic)
1 bunch cilantro, about 1 cup of leaves (save a few leaves for garnish)
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt to taste
Procedure for the soup:
1. Pour the olive oil into a large pot and then add the leeks and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring as needed. After 5 minutes, add the garlic and continue to stir so neither the leeks nor the garlic burn, about 2 to 3 minutes.
2. Add the white wine and cook until the wine has reduced by half.
3. Add the white beans and the stock, and cook until the beans are tender, about 1 hour to 1 hour and 15 minutes. If you are using a pressure cooker, once it comes up to temperature, lower the heat to medium-low and cook about 30 minutes.
3. Puree the soup in the blender in several batches. Blend 2 to 2-½ cups at a time, or the pressure from the steam in the covered blender can cause a small explosion, sending soup all over. Season the soup with salt and pepper.
Procedure for the Cilantro Pesto:
1. Put the garlic and the red pepper flakes in a food processor and process until the garlic is minced, and then add the cilantro and process just until it is chopped.
2. Slowly add the olive oil to the cilantro while the food processor is running. Add salt to taste.
Procedure for the asparagus:
1. Place 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a 10-inch skillet and then add the asparagus. Cook until the asparagus is tender and lightly season with salt.
Pan Roast Asparagus
To Serve– Stir the pesto well and place it in a bottle with a small opening, like a pointed mustard bottle. Ladle the soup in the bowls and then add the pesto to the soup by drawing a circular pattern that starts in the center and circles around 3 times. Or, use a small spoon to spread it onto the soup. Use from 3 to 5 asparagus tips in the center of the soup and garnish with cilantro leaves. Serve the remaining asparagus on the side.
Start to garnish the soup
This recipe is also posted at The Pennywise Platter
Curried Tomato Soup with Hard-Boiled Eggs
My friend Joanne at Eats Well With Others is the host for this week’s The Food Matters Project. Leave it to her to choose an interesting recipe. Curried Tomato Soup with Hard-Boiled Eggs is a delightful soup that offers a balance of coolness and heat, with a rough yet creamy texture. It’s slightly exotic, but also familiar echoes.
According to Mark Bittman, the recipe developer, it’s based on a spicy Indian tomato sauce called makhani, often used for braising eggs. The difference is that he adds lots of vegetables and a bit of coconut milk. And by the way, this soup is full of great anti-oxidants! My family and friends enjoyed this soup very much yesterday. Next time I make it another hot chili may find its way into the pot.
Servings: 4 to 6
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yield: 1-3/4 quarts
¼ cup olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced ginger
1 tablespoon minced fresh hot chili (I used a Serrano chili)
1-1/2 tablespoons curry powder (the original recipe calls for 2 T.)
1 teaspoon cumin
Pinch organic cane sugar
2 all-purpose potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 carrot, chopped
Salt and black pepper
3 cups vegetable stock, or water
1 cup coconut milk
3 cups chopped tomatoes, chopped (canned are fine: chopped, and including juice)
1 small cauliflower, cored and roughly chopped
4 hard-boiled eggs, roughly chopped
¼ cup cilantro leaves, for garnish
1) Put the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium high heat. When it’s hot, add the onion, garlic, ginger and chili. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the curry powder, cumin, and sugar. Cook and stir until the spices become fragrant, a minute or 2 more.
2) Add the potatoes and carrot and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, for a minute or 2, than add the vegetable stock, coconut milk, and tomatoes with their liquid. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat so the mixture bubbles gently. Cook, stirring once in a while, until the potatoes and carrots a fairly soft, 15 to 20 minutes.
3) Add the cauliflower and adjust the heat so that the mixture bubbles gently. Cook until all the vegetables are very tender, about 15 minutes more. (The soup can be made up to this point in advance and refrigerated for several days or frozen for months; gently reheat before proceeding.) Serve garnished with hard-boiled egg and cilantro.
Drop by Joanne’s page to see other foodies variations of the recipes; and see The Food Matter’s Project for the weekly schedule.
Soup from stock
Over the holiday week you may have gotten together with family or friends and you possibly ate roasted chicken, turkey, or beef roast. Roasts are easy to make and they can potentially feed a lot of people. But what do you do after the meal? If you are like most people, you pick the meat off the bones and then you throw the bones into the trash. Right? If this is you, then you’re missing a great meal that you could have had by making a stock from the bones, and then using the stock to make a satisfying homemade soup.
Stock is very easy to make. You throw some bones in a pot of water with a handful of vegetables, a couple of parsley stems, and a bay leaf. After it cooks for 1-1/2 hours you let it cool, and then strain it. Now you have the base of what may be a healthy, nutritious, and tasty soup. You can prepare hearty turkey, chicken, or beef soup –depending on the bones that you used.
Stock can be frozen in Pyrex glass containers that will not break in the freezer, and you can use it in sauces, soups, and in many Chinese dishes. I freeze stock in different size containers: small ones for sauce, or large ones for soup. Later when I want to make soup, I’ll pull container out of the freezer and put it in the refrigerator for a couple of days to thaw, or I’ll heat it directly in the microwave for immediate use. As it thaws, I’ll sauté a bit of onion in olive oil and then add other ingredients to the soup. Following, is a list of some foods to give you an idea of what you might add to the stock: tomato, mushrooms, spinach, Swiss chard, noodles, zucchini, bell pepper, broccoli, garlic, fish, bay leaf, oregano, basil, cooked rice, barley, or noodles. You can add whatever you like. Be creative.
Prep TIme: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 1-1/2 hours
Yield: 3 quarts
½ turkey carcass, or 1 whole chicken carcass
1 8-quart stockpot filled with 6 quarts of water
1 carrot, washed and chopped into 1-inch size pieces
1 stick celery, chopped into chopped into 1-inch size pieces
½ onion chopped into large pieces
2 bay leaves
Place the ingredients into a 8-quart stockpot and fill with 6 quarts of water. Bring it to a simmer. After it has reduced by half the amount of water, about 1-1/2 hours to 2 hours, allow it cool and then strain it.
*Tip -For fat-free stock refrigerate the stock overnight so the fat solidifies on the of the liquid, then it can be skimmed off the top.
Not too long ago I posted a recipe for pH Green Smoothie. There was some nice response from that post with requests for more information about the pH diet. If you’ve ever read any books about the pH diet you’ll know that the ultimate goal of the diet is to balance your body’s blood pH. Just like you would want to balance the pH in your swimming pool, proponents of the this diet indicate that your body also has to have proper pH in order to be healthy. When our bodies are too acidic we are at risk of becoming ill with diseases like eczema, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease diabetes, cancer, and so on.
Water has a neutral pH at 7.0 and the body’s blood pH should be at approximately 7.35. To get our bodies to this ideal pH we need to give up foods that are acid forming like processed foods, milk, coffee, fried foods, sugar, etc. We need to eat more alkaline forming foods like cucumbers, spinach, avocados, papaya, melon, etc. There is more to the pH diet, however, than just eating more fruits and vegetables. For more information, check out the reading sources at the end of the recipe.
The recipe for pH avocado gazpacho was inspired by Shelly Young’s “Popeye Soup,” from The pH Miracle. Her recipe uses flavors from the east. I thought, why not south of the border? Let me know how you like it.
Yield: 2 cups
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
1 ripe avocado
½ cucumber peeled, seeded and chopped
1 cup spinach
1 tbsp. Lime juice
1 clove garlic, minced
½ jalapeño pepper, minced
¾ cup cold water
½ cup ice
¾ tsp chili pepper
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp coriander
Salt to taste
2 tbsp. Yogurt for garnish
Cilantro leaves for garnish
Place all of the ingredients, except the yogurt and the cilantro leaves, in a blender or food processor and process until the soup is smooth. Check for seasonings. Garnish with yogurt and cilantro leaves.
The Acid Alkaline Diet for Optimum Health by Christopher Vasey, N.D.
The pH Balance Diet by Bharti Vyas and Suzanne Le Quesne
Crazy Sexy Diet by Kris Carr
Do you like my recipe? Why not SUBSCRIBE and get them by email so you never miss a post.
Ingredients for Gazpacho
Phew, it’ll be another hot summer. One of the most appetizing things you I do to fight the heat is to make Gazpacho, which is a Spanish tomato soup that’s served cold. It’s delicious, it’s nutritious, and best of all, it’s really easy to make. Gazpacho is a Spanish as Apple Pie is American. In Spain, you can even buy it in the refrigerator section of the supermarket.
I always ask Spanish women how they make their Gazpacho and they 95 percent of they time they answer the same: tomato, red bell pepper, cucumber, onion, garlic, bread, olive oil and vinegar. (In the picture above I substituted lemon for the vinegar, which I do when someone doesn’t like vinegar.) Only on a couple of occasions, have women have told me that they use flour as a thickener instead of bread.
Gazpacho is a refreshing, raw, healthy food choice and it’s also an elegant food. For some special guests, you may want try this elegant presentation that Su, at WebosFritos discovered while looking at a culinary technique book from Editorial Blume. (Click on the link to see her beautiful presentation.)
If you’ve never tried Gazpacho, you must try it soon!
Prep time: 20 to 30 minutes plus 4 hours to chill
4 large ripe tomatoes
1 red bell pepper
1 small cucumber
4 slices bread, whole wheat or white
1/3 cup chopped onion
2 medium cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons vinegar or lemon juice
1) Fill a 2-quart pot with water and bring it to a boil. While you wait for the water to come to a boil, score the bottom of the tomatoes by making an X with the paring knife. And then, use the knife to core the top of the tomato. Make an incision about 3/4 of an inch deep and then cut around the green stem to remove it. Once the water has come to a boil, place one to two tomatoes in the pot for twenty seconds, keeping the whole tomato under the water level. Next, place the tomato into a bowl of cold water. Repeat until all the tomatoes have been in the boiling water. After the tomatoes have been parboiled for 20 seconds, peel them and seed them, and then discard the seeds and the peels.
2) Remove the outer crust from the bread, and then place the four slices of the bread in about 1 to 1-1/2 cups of water to let it soften.
3) Peel the cucumber, slice it in half lengthwise, and then remove the seeds with a spoon by running the spoon down the length to dig out the seeds. Discard the peel and the seeds.
4) Slice the bell pepper lengthwise and remove the seeds. Discard the seeds and then chop the pepper into small pieces.
5) Place the onion, the garlic, the bread, and half of the chopped ingredients into a blender and add about 1/2 cup of water. Blend on high speed until the soup is a smooth consistency. Pour this batch into a pot large enough to hold both batches. Blend the remaining ingredients in the blender, adding water as needed, and process until it is very smooth.
6) Add 3/4 to 1 teaspoon of salt, 2 teaspoons of vinegar, and 1/4 cup of olive oil. (For vinegar, try using sherry vinegar, white wine vinegar, or distilled white vinegar). If it tastes flat, try adding a touch more salt, or vinegar, as needed. Chill 4 hours in the refrigerator.
Garnish with diced red bell pepper, green bell pepper, and bread.
*Note – Vegetables from the nightshade family, like tomatoes and peppers, may cause inflammation in some people.
Do you enjoy my recipes? SUBSCRIBE to receive them by email, or, by RSS
You may also enjoy reading Celery Soup and Red Bell Peppers for Your Wrinkles
This recipe is posted at Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays and Simple Lives Thursday
Do you ever have one of those weeks when you just can’t get caught up? You’re not expecting the unexpected and then it hits you in the face. That’s how I feel this week.
I do like to cook but there are times like today (and this whole week for that matter), when I’m feeling a little frazzled and all I want is something nutritious to eat that’s easy to make so I can get on with the day. One answer that I have for a time like this is Miso soup, and it satisfies the requirements of being nutritious, tasty, and quick to prepare. White Miso, the type I use, is a paste made from fermented rice and soy beans. And Dr. William W. Li, expert contributor on Dr. Oz show, says miso has four times the cancer fighting properties as tofu.
Another interesting note is that the South River Miso Website cites Michio Kushi, author of How to Cook with Miso, as saying, “According to Japanese mythology, miso is a gift to mankind from the gods to assure lasting health, longevity, and happiness.”
The taste is a little unusual if you have never tried it before. The broth is slightly salty an reminicent of the ocean.You can add your favorite vegetables to the soup for nice light lunch or dinner starter.
Miso is available in different colors and flavor ranging from the white, to brown or red. For more information about miso, the following pages provide some interesting and useful information: South River Miso , Just Hungry, Wikipedia.
I know it can be scary to go to the supermarket and buy some product you’ve never heard of. So, next time you go out to eat sushi, order miso soup along with your sushi and give it a try. *Tip – add any vegetables to the broth.
Prep time: 12 minutes
Total time: 15 minutes
Ingredients: (two servings)
2 Tablespoons Miso
2 hardboiled egg
2 handfuls Spinach
4 ounces firmed tofu, cut in ½-inch squares
2 green onion stalks, sliced 1/ 4 inch wide
1) Place 2 eggs in a pot, cover with water and bring a low boil. Cook for 10 minutes and then drain the water and cool the eggs in 2 cups of ice, and 1/2 cup of cold water. Peel the eggs and set them aside.
2) Bring to a boil 2 ½ cups water.
3) Remove the water from the stove and stir in 2 tablespoons of white miso.
4) Add the cubed tofu and the spinach and stir until the spinach has wilted. It will wilt on it’s own there is no need to boil the soup at this point.
5) Pour the soup into 2 serving bowls, sprinkle the green onions over the top and eat it!
Do you enjoy my recipes? SUBSCRIBE to receive them by email, or, by RSS
Other posts you may like: Celery Puree or Salmon Paprika Soup
This recipe is also posted at Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays , Simple lives Thursdays, and Hearth and Soul
Salmon Paprika Soup
I was invited to post a recipe that uses paprika, by Sue over at couscous-consciouness for the blog carnival there. I spend a lot of time in Spain, so it wasn’t too hard to come up with a recipe. Paprika, or pimentón, as it’s called in Spanish, is a primary ingredient used in Spanish cooking. There are three different types: pimentón dulce (mild), pimentón agridulce (moderately spicy, and pimentón picante (very spicy). In Spain, paprika is frequently used in cured meats, appetizers, soups, and main courses.
One method Spaniards use to flavor foods is done by making a flavored base called a sofrito that involves sautéing garlic, or onion and garlic together, in olive oil and then adding the paprika and stirring it together for a few seconds before adding it to the food. You can find Spanish paprika by searching online, or checking your local Whole Foods Market. Here’s my recipe for Salmon Paprika Soup. Enjoy! (4 servings)
1 filet wild salmon, approximately 6 ounces
1/3 Cup finely chopped onion
1 Roma tomato, chopped
1 bay leaf
½ cup small whole-wheat noodles for soup,
or ¾ cup leftover whole grain rice
1 ½ tablespoons parsley, minced
4 ½ cups water
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon paprika
2 ½ to 3 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 teaspoon salt
1.) Rinse the salmon well with water and then pat dry with a paper towel.
2.) Sauté the onion in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. When the onion is transparent, add the tomato and cook for 30 seconds. Next, add the water, the bay leaf, salt, and the whole filet of salmon. Bring the soup to a simmer and cook approximately 5-7 minutes, until the salmon is cooked.
3.) Remove the salmon and place it on a plate. Use a fork to break up the salmon into small pieces, and set the plate to the side.
4.) Add the pasta to the soup and cook it until it is tender. (If too much liquid has evaporated, add a little more water.) Add the salmon back into the soup; and then, turn the heat down and cover the pot.
5.) In a small 6-8 inch frying pan, heat 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and when it has cooked about 30 seconds, add the paprika and swirl it around in the pan, and then add it to the soup. Add about 2 tablespoons of water to the pan and swirl it around and then add that to the soup, too. Add two-thirds of the parsley to the soup and stir it around. Use the other one-third to garnish the soup.
Serve with good bread!
This recipe is posted at Makeit…mondays and PotluckFridays
The taste of this interesting and earthy flavored butternut squash puree isn’t the only thing you’ll enjoy by eating it. According to the Dole Nutrition Institute, butternut squash has lots of beta-carotene, which helps to defend against wrinkles and age spots. And the vitamin A and C in butternut squash aid to boost your immune system and inhibit collagen breakdown. Try this butternut squash puree to get strong and stay beautiful.
Below are directions for traditional stove top cooking, and for cooking with a pressure cooker.
*Tip – If you make a lot of puree soups and do not have a hand-held stick blender, I highly recommend that you buy one. Stick hand-held blenders are not the same as the hand-held blender for mashing potatoes–they are fast and they blend soups well. Stick blenders are convenient to use because you can do the blending in the same pot, not in separate batches, and the clean up is very easy.
Butternut Squash Puree
2 tablespoons olive
1 medium onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped (1/2 cup)
3 to 3 ½ pounds Butternut Squash, peeled, seeded, and chopped into 1-inch cubes
Sweet potato, 1 small (approximately ½ pound), chopped into 1-inch cubes
2 dried prunes
2 teaspoons agave nectar
1 ¾ teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¾ cup non-fat milk
For Garnish: sliced green onion and toasted bread crumbs
Procedure for Stove Top cooking:
1. Sauté the onion until it is transparent and then add the celery. Continue to sauté the onion and celery over medium low heat until the onion has caramelized and has a light caramel brown color.
2. Add the squash, the sweet potato, the prunes, the agave, the cinnamon, the salt, and the bay leaf.
3. Cover the root vegetables with water, or with vegetable stock. The water line should reach about 3/4 of an inch above the squash and potatoes. Bring to a boil. Once it comes to a boil, lower the heat to medium low and cover with the lid. Continue to cook until the squash and sweet potato are tender, approximately one hour.
4. When the root vegetables are tender, remove the bay leaf and use a hand stick blender to puree. If you use a hand stick blender you will not have to blend in separate batches. Blend until it is smooth and homogeneous. (If you do not own a hand stick blender you can use a regular blender, though you may have to process it in two to three batches at a time. Pour the already made puree into a separate serving bowl, and continue blending until the whole batch is smooth and homogenous).
5. Pour the puree back into the cooking pot and add the ¾ cup nonfat milk. Bring to a simmer and continue to simmer for 3-4 minutes.
6. Adjust the seasonings.
Garnish with sliced green onions and toasted whole wheat bread crumbs.
Procedure for Pressure Cooker:
1. In the pressure cooker, sauté the onion until it is transparent and then add the celery. Continue to sauté the onion and celery over medium low heat until the onion has caramelized and has a light caramel brown color.
2. Add the squash, the sweet potato, the prunes, the agave, the cinnamon, the salt, and the bay leaf.
3. Place the lid on the pressure cooker. Heat the pressure cooker on high until you hear the sound of the steam being released from the pressure cooker. Lower the heat to medium low and cook for 6 minutes.
4. After cooking the root vegetables for 6 minutes, cool the pot under cold running water until the pressure drops and you can safely open the lid. Take the pot from the sink, open the lid, remove the bay leaf and use a hand stick blender to process until the puree is smooth and homogenous. (If you do not own a hand stick blender you can use a regular blender, though you may have to process it in two to three batches at a time. Pour the already made puree into a separate serving bowl, and continue blending until the whole batch is smooth and homogenous).
5. Add the milk and bring back to a simmer. Allow the puree to simmer for 3-4 minutes.
6. Adjust the seasonings.
Garnish of sliced green onions and toasted whole wheat bread crumbs.
Cheers to health and beauty!