Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup


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Nothing says “autumn” like pumpkin soup.  I’ve made plenty of butternut squash and pumpkin soups before and always enjoyed them.  Last week at the farmer’s market, however, I picked up a bunch of beets, and thinking that roasted beets had a similarly sweet flavor after roasting, I thought maybe they would go well combined with pumpkin in a soup.

According to the internet, I’m not the first one who’s thought of this.

So here is my roasted beet and pumpkin soup recipe.  It was hearty, sweet, and delicious, not to mention incredibly healthy!

IMG 3510 300x225   Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Roasted Beet and Pumpkin Soup

Ingredients:

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Scrub beets and trim leaves off (save the tops, you can eat them!).
Slice beets in half or quarter them.

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Beets before roasting

Place in foil and drizzle with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.
Wrap in foil and roast in the oven for ~30 minutes or until soft when pierced with a fork.
Remove from the oven and peel the remaining skin off each beet.

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Roasted Beets

Roast pumpkin (similarly) or place in a pressure cooker and cook for ~5-10 mins once pressure is reached.  You will need to scrub the pumpkin and cut it open to scoop out the seeds first.

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Scooping seeds out of the pumpkin

Discard the pulp but save the seeds.
Rinse seeds and place on a baking sheet in the oven or toaster oven for a couple of minutes (sprinkle with salt).

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Roasted pumpkin seeds with salt

Pumpkin seeds are delicious as a snack or garnish on salads or soups! Don’t waste them!

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Cooking the pumpkin in a pressure cooker

In a large or medium pot, saute diced leek, diced ginger (about 1″ section) and several cloves of garlic in olive oil until tender.

Once pumpkin is roasted or pressure cooked, remove the skin and put the pumpkin pulp in a medium or large pot with the beets.

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Pumpkin puree and roasted beets with ginger, leek and garlic

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Blending the pumpkin and beets

Add 1 cups of water and 1 cup almond milk to thin, and blend with a blender or (more conveniently) an immersion blender.

Continue to cook over medium, adding cinnamon, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, ground fennel, salt and pepper to taste.

Thin to the desired consistency with almond milk or water.

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Roasted Beet and pumpkin soup

Garnish with pumpkin seeds and enjoy!

October 4, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Fall Spice Waffles with Apple Fruit Topping


IMG 34111 300x225   Fall Spice Waffles with Apple Fruit Topping

Fall Spice Waffles with Apple Fruit Topping

Dry Ingredients
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp sea salt
3 tsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
cardamom, cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, cloves (Fall spice Medley)
a handful of finely chopped ginger

Wet Ingredients
2 eggs
3/4 cups almond milk (you can use regular milk or a milk substitute)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup oil (butter, grapeseed, olive)
¾ cup ginger ale** (add after combining all ingredients)

Now, whisk them together in a large bowl. Add the ginger ale. I spray the waffle iron with non-stick cooking spray or lightly brush it with oil (grapeseed oil or olive oil). Put about 2/3 cup of batter in the middle of the waffle iron and close the “lid.” The batter is moderately thick, so I think 4 1/2 – 5 minutes did the trick. This should make about 4-5 8-inch circular waffles. Rule of thumb: Cook waffles until the steam stops rising from the iron. You can also judge by the color.

IMG 34211 300x225   Fall Spice Waffles with Apple Fruit Topping

Fall Spice Waffles with Apple Fruit Topping add Nectarines

Top your waffles with the Greek yogurt and Baked Cinnamon Cranberry Cardamom Apples. I also did a remix with warm apple topping and cold nectarines. O. M. G.


Food, Recipe

 
 

Green Tomato and Sausage Eggs Benedict


This was a great way to start my Monday. I’ve been covering biscuits and bread with some of my sauces to make tomato based breakfast dishes. Bolognese N’ Biscuits and Egg Drop Salsa were fantastic. I’m back at it with a twist on Eggs Benedict using my Healthy White Sauce Alternative (White Beans and Cauliflower). This recipe was fairly simple, especially since I had a large batch of white sauce in the freezer. You will need:

2 portabello mushroom caps
4 eggs
¼ pound of loose sausage (I used sausage from White Rose Farms via the Catonsville Farmers Market)
1 jalapeno
1 medium green tomato
1/8 cups finely diced leek or onion
1 cup Healthy White Sauce Alternative (White Beans and Cauliflower)
dash cumin
salt/pepper
handful cilantro (for garnish)

You’ll need one pan for the sauce and another deeper pot for poaching the eggs. Put water in the deeper pot and prep it for boiling. Add a few tablespoons of vinegar. This helps with the poaching process. Poaching eggs is a healthy alternative to frying, because it doesn’t require any oil.

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Sausage, jalapeno, leek, and green tomato saute in grapeseed oil

I put a little bit of grapeseed oil in my pan and sauteed my leek and jalapeno until the leek was clear. I added my sausage and browned it, breaking it into little pieces in the pan and I seasoned it with cumin, salt, and pepper. When the sausage was about halfway done, I added my diced green tomato. After about a minute, I poured my white sauce into the pan and turned it down to a low simmer.

IMG 3541 300x225   Green Tomato and Sausage Eggs Benedict

Green tomato and sausage white sauce

At this point, I put my mushroom caps in the toaster oven. If anyone has any pointers about cooking portabello mushroom caps, please let me know. My water was simmering, so I cracked my eggs and dropped them into the pot. For my taste, they only needed to cook for about 3 minutes. That was perfect timing for this recipe.

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Poached eggs over mushroom caps

After 3 minutes, my caps were done so I moved them from the toaster and onto my plate. I placed two eggs on top of each mushroom. Finally, I covered the eggs with the sauce and garnished it with some fresh cilantro. Here you go!

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Green Tomato and Sausage Eggs Benedict

I was very pleased with this creation. You could probably take this white sauce and do the same recipe sans mushrooms, add potatoes, use smaller caps, pour over an English muffin, biscuit etc.

IMG 3546 300x225   Green Tomato and Sausage Eggs Benedict

Green Tomato and Sausage Eggs Benedict

I like this low carb version. I’d say this was another successful use for my Healthy White Sauce Alternative (White Beans and Cauliflower) 🙂

October 3, 2011
Food, Recipe

 
 

Baked Cinnamon Cranberry Cardamom Apples


IMG 33901 300x225   Baked Cinnamon Cranberry Cardamom Apples

Apples in a mixing bowl with Fall spices

4 diced apples (use different varieties for color and flavor)
½ cup dried cranberries (you can add an equal amount of raisins)
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup white sugar
cardamom, cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, cloves (Fall spice Medley)
I tbsp of melted butter

IMG 33941 225x300   Baked Cinnamon Cranberry Cardamom Apples

Prepping cardamom with a mortar and pestle

I combined all of my ingredients in a mixing bowl and placed them in a non stick aluminum pan. I covered the pan with aluminum foil. After baking them on 350 degrees for 40 minutes (time will vary depending on the size of the apples), they came out like this:

 

IMG 34031 300x205   Baked Cinnamon Cranberry Cardamom Apples

Baked Cinnamon Cranberry Cardamom Apples

I will use my apples in oatmeal, maybe on the side with a pork chop, or over Banana Nice Cream. Baked Cinnamon Cranberry Cardamom Apples go well with waffles. Soon, I’ll be posting my Fall Waffle Recipe!


Food, Recipe

 
 

Sesame Tofu Stir-Fry


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This meal is one of my staples when I’m too tired to think of something else to cook, or when I really need some vegetables.

It’s an Asian stir fry made with whatever vegetables you wish (though carrot and broccoli are always good to start with), tofu, and sesame-soy-ginger sauce.

Ingredients:

  • Veggies (any and all!) – I used broccoli, carrots, and mushroo
    IMG 3412 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

    Garlic, leek, jalepeno, carrots, broccoli

    ms (and jalepeno for spice)

  • Trifecta of Awesomeness (Garlic, Ginger, Leek) – diced
  • Tofu (firm/extra-firm) – cubed
  • Can of assorted Asian stir-fry vegetables (baby corn, water chestnut, etc.)

    IMG 3414 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

    Mushrooms and Asian stir-fry veggies

  • Fresh Thai Basil
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Sauce: Soy sauce, sesame oil, chili oil, paprika, salt, pepper, cornstarch (if desired, to make a thicker sauce)

Directions:

Saute garlic and leek in olive or grapeseed oil.

Add veggies (firmest first) and saute until slightly tender.  Add drained can of Asian stir-fry veggies.

Squeeze all excess water from the tofu and cube.  Season tofu with paprika, salt, pepper, soy sauce and a drizzle of sesame oil.  Coat with sesame seeds.

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Tofu with sesame seeds

While veggies are cooking, saute tofu in a separate pan.

Mix the sauce together– 4 tbsp  soy/1 tsp sesame/chili oil if you have it.  Add a teaspoon of cornstarch if you would like a thicker sauce (and a little water if you like)

IMG 3416 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

stir-fry

Add sauce and tofu to the veggie stir fry and cook for a minute to combine.  Add fresh thai basil for the last minute or so.  Enjoy!

IMG 3418 300x225   Sesame Tofu Stir Fry

Sesame Tofy Stir-Fry

October 2, 2011
Food, Recipe