De Ma Cuisine

Summer Squash Archive

Thursday

12

November 2015

0

COMMENTS

Roasted Broccoli and Squash with a Basil and Tahini Sauce

Written by , Posted in Condiments, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Gluten Free, Herbs, Main Dishes, Pasta, Quick and Easy, Rice, Roasting, Sauces, Sides, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

RoastedBroccoliSquashBasilTahiniSauce-6

As I type this, I’m practicing my songs for the Christmas concert in December. This seems wrong because the weather doesn’t match the feel of the songs. I don’t know if it will ever not be weird to me to have 90 degree weather in October, but I’m coping. I try to avoid using the oven too much when it’s hot. But, today I made an exception. It just has to be done earlier in the day when it’s still cool out. And, even though it warms up the house a lot, it’s worth it to be rewarded with roasted veggies.

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Roasted broccoli is one of my favorite things. Sure, it can make the house smell like toots, but it tastes so good that it doesn’t really bother me. And roasted summer squash, I can eat the entire pan by myself. Easy.

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I tossed them with some olive oil, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Simple.

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While they roasted I blended together some sauce (which could be a dip, just make it a little thicker). It contained things like garlic, ginger, basil, tahini paste, and homemade yogurt. I’m totally on a homemade yogurt kick right now. It’s the best, and it’s not too difficult to make. When I make it, I feel like I’m winning at life. Same with homemade bread. I guess we all have our things that make us feel like we’ve accomplished something great. Those are two of mine.

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This sauce might be another. It’s a bit Asian-inspired, with the soy sauce (liquid aminos if you’re gluten-free) and the tahini. If you have leftovers, you might use it on an Asian Chicken Salad or a Napa Cabbage Slaw. If you don’t have tahini paste (which is ground up sesame seeds), you could use almond or peanut butter.

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I served the veggies drizzled with the sauce, over some brown rice. Other options would be to serve it over pasta, spaghetti squash, chicken, tofu, or just dip the veggies in the sauce. They’re great that way too.

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I see cooler weather in the forecast. It’s almost the season for all the roasted veggies, soups, and stews.

Happy Eating!

Roasted Broccoli and Squash with a Basil and Tahini Sauce

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

Yield: 2

Roasted Broccoli and Squash with a Basil and Tahini Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 head broccoli, cut into bite sized pieces (stems too, just peel the tough outer skin)
  • 1 medium or 2 small summer squash, cut into sticks
  • 1 t olive oil
  • to taste salt
  • to taste pepper
  • pinch cayenne
  • sauce: 1 T tahini paste
  • 1 t soy sauce or liquid aminos
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2" cube fresh ginger (or good pinch dried)
  • pinch cayenne
  • 2-3 T plain yogurt (Greek or coconut) or silken tofu
  • 1/4 t dried thyme or 1 t fresh
  • 2-3 T fresh basil
  • to taste olive oil
  • cooked rice, rice noodles, spaghetti squash, chicken, tofu, for serving (optional)

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400F.
  2. Toss broccoli and squash with oil, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Roast for 10 minutes, flip, and roast for 10 minutes more (or until a bit crispy outside).
  3. Blend tahini through olive oil. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
  4. Serve veggies drizzled with sauce (over rice, rice noodles, spaghetti squash, chicken, or tofu, if desired).
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/roasted-broccoli-tahini-sauce/

Thursday

1

October 2015

0

COMMENTS

Cream of Squash Soup

Written by , Posted in Dairy-Free, Dinner, Gluten Free, Herbs, Lunch, Main Dishes, Roasting, Soups, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Summer2015Garden

This summer, like most summers, I planted a garden. We used the compost that I’d been working on for a year. We bought organic dirt, and I rummaged around for the seeds that I’d been saving. Some were from packages (and probably a few years old at best), some saved from last year’s Abundant Harvest Organics produce. They were planted with eager anticipation. It happens every spring. The daily ritual of watering, peering into the black dirt to see if there’s even one sprout. And for days, there’s nothing. And then it’s like a thousand tiny miracles happen overnight. There are tiny sprouts, some shyly emerging from the dirt, as if unsure. Some are a bit more bold and brave, seeming to grow inches in minutes.

Most of the brave ones are squash.

My composter is the type that you add kitchen scraps to and then roll around outside to mix it up. So it doesn’t have a layer of dirt dirt at the bottom the way some do. It doesn’t bother me to have partially decomposed fruits and veggies mixed in with the dirt. No big deal. Except that I didn’t know that it’s really best to add the compost about a month before you plant. Gives the volunteers some time to die off.

Now I know.

I’d planted summer squash, watermelon, cantaloupe, green beans, snap peas, tomatoes, basil, potatoes… and more. I ended up with a few of the things I’d hoped for and some that I hadn’t intended at all.

Winter squash. In the summer. Oh well, the growing process is fun no matter what I end up with. And I learned something from it, so double win.

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Thankfully the winter squash will keep foreeeeeeever on the counter. I harvested this spaghetti squash in like July (um because I accidentally pulled out the plant when I was clearing out some dead vines). I was saving it for something special… or just fall. I don’t really know. It just didn’t get eaten and all-of-a-sudden it’s soup time again and the winter squash are screaming to be used.

I will comply.

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Every year I look forward to fall so I can get back to the thing I love most: All. The. Soup. It’s one of the best ways to get so many veggies into a dish. Today I had peppers (sweet and chile), onion, carrot, garlic, and squash (both summer and winter) on hand. I had a ton of garlic chives and fresh basil too.

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I roasted the squash yesterday so that this would be pretty quick. A bit of olive oil on the inside and out, a hot oven, an hour or so, and they’re done. I let them cool and then refrigerated overnight. All I had to do to the squash today was scrape it out and add it at the right time. Easy.

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I’m always amazed at what happens when veggies, stock, vinegar, and some salt are simmered for a while. It’s a little like magic.

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This is pretty much a straight up vegetable soup, until you add the coconut milk or cream. That’s what makes it extra special. But, if you don’t have either, don’t sweat it. Just make an awesome Squash and Carrot Soup and call it good.

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Like most soups, this will probably taste best tomorrow, so I’ll just go ahead and add it to the menu again.

Happy Eating!

 

Cream of Squash Soup

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 48 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 3 minutes

Yield: 3-4

Cream of Squash Soup

Ingredients

  • 1/2 spaghetti squash (or other variety), seeds removed (once cooked, roughly chop the spaghetti-like strands so they aren't too long)
  • 1 t + 2 T olive oil
  • 2 1/2-3 C veggies (any): bell or sweet pepper, summer squash, carrots, parsnips, cauliflower, celery, green beans, radish, chile pepper (ribs and seeds removed), onion, shallot, leek; diced
  • to taste salt
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 t maple syrup or honey
  • 1 T balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 t dried (or 1/4 T fresh) thyme
  • 4-6 C veggie stock (could also use chicken)
  • 1/4 C fresh herbs: basil, garlic chives, parsley; diced
  • coconut milk or heavy cream, for serving

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350F.
  2. Brush squash with 1 t olive oil (inside and out). Roast cut side down for about 60 minutes, or until flesh is tender. Set aside. (This step can be done ahead of time, squash cooled and refrigerated for up to a few days.)
  3. Heat a soup pot over medium-low. Add 2 T olive oil. When oil is hot, add veggies and salt. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add squash and garlic. Cook for 2 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar and cook for 1 minute. Add thyme (if using dried) and stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, or until veggies are tender. Add fresh herbs and cook for 3-5 minutes more. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
  4. Serve with a bit of coconut milk or cream swirled into each bowlful of soup.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/cream-of-squash-soup/

Thursday

24

September 2015

0

COMMENTS

Carrot Pasta with Tarragon

Written by , Posted in Beans, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Fruit, Gluten Free, Herbs, Legumes, Lentils, Lunch, Main Dishes, Pasta, Quick and Easy, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

CarrotPasta-5

If I told you that this was another dish where versatility is key, would you be surprised? It’s the way that I cook, so as often as possible, I will offer alternatives. Just in case it’s a different season when you read this post, in case you have something else in your fridge, in case you don’t care for something that I’ve used.

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I wanted to do a pasta dish of sorts, using veggies as the pasta. Here’s where you can pull out that spiralizer, if you’ve already jumped on the veggie pasta bandwagon. I have far too many tools in my kitchen, so I opted to use a knife to cut carrots and summer squash into long, thin, pasta-like sticks (kinda like a long julienne). Other veggies that would be great: beets, parsnips, daikon radish, and fennel. Just mix and match based on what will go with the fresh herbs that you have on hand (for help with parings The Vegetarian Flavor Bible is a great kitchen tool).

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I cooked the “pasta” in boiling salted water. I cooked for just three minutes – quick and easy.

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To top the “pasta” I made a simple sauce of sorts. I used butter today, but for a vegan option, or just because it’s yummy, olive oil would be fabulous. I chopped up some small radishes, a shallot, and some garlic. Other veggies that would be great: peas, greens, cabbage, and green beans – again, mix and match based on the other veggies and herbs that you have on hand. Today’s herbs were tarragon and parsley. Other herbs to consider (these all go with carrots, if you want to keep them as the main veg): basil, Thai basil, chives, cilantro, dill, mint, and thyme.

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You could leave things as they are. That’d make for a great dish. But, I wanted to bump up the protein, so I added some lentils. I’m kinda obsessed with green lentils right now. They hold their shape well and taste great. I want to eat them all the time. Garbanzo beans or black beans would be fun too, if you’re not as in to lentils as I am.

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The lentils and tarragon, along with the dijon mustard that I added to the sauce, resulted in a dish that felt kinda French inspired. Topped with fresh tomatoes, this was a fabulous lunch. By the time I got to it, it was more room temperature than hot, but it was delicious. So, serve it either way. You could also top with more fresh herbs or nuts, even cheese, if you’re feeling cheesy. It would be great with some garlic bread or cornbread alongside, and a hearty spinach salad… But, just on its own is wonderful too.

Happy Eating!

Carrot Pasta with Tarragon

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 2

Carrot Pasta with Tarragon

Ingredients

  • 2 T butter or olive oil, divided
  • 1/4 C radish, diced
  • 1 shallot or small onion, diced
  • to taste salt
  • (could also add: peas, greens, cabbage, green beans)
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1 C lentils (or garbanzo or black beans), cooked
  • 1 to 1 1/2 t dijon mustard
  • 1 C carrot, thinly sliced into strips and then into long noodle-like sticks
  • 1/2 C summer squash, thinly sliced into strips and then into long noodle-like sticks
  • (could also use or substitute: beets, parsnips, daikon radish, or fennel)
  • 1-2 T fresh tarragon, chopped (with other veggies could substitute basil, dill, mint, or thyme)
  • 1 T fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped, for topping
  • splash white vinegar, for topping

Instructions

  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. While it comes to a boil, heat a skillet over medium-low. Add 1 1/2 T butter or oil. When it's hot, add radish through salt. Cook for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic, lentils (or beans), and dijon, and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat and stir in remaining 1/2 T butter/oil, tarragon, and parsley. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
  3. While sauce cooks, drop carrots and squash (and any other veggie "noodles") into the boiling water. Cook for 3 minutes. Drain.
  4. Top "pasta" with lentil sauce, some tomatoes, and a splash of vinegar. Serve warm or at room temperature.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/carrot-pasta-with-tarragon/

Monday

21

September 2015

0

COMMENTS

Whole Wheat Pear Muffins

Written by , Posted in Baking, Bread, Breakfast, Brunch, Dairy-Free, Dessert, Eggs, Fruit, Gluten Free, Grains, Kid-Friendly, Lunch, Nuts, Quick and Easy, Snacks, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

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I’ve never been the best baker. I like to think that it’s because of my lack of skill when it comes to all things science. I got a D in chemistry in high school. Sometimes I wonder, if they’d told me how much I would care about science when I grew up, or if someone had shown me science in action, in the form of different baked goods, if it would have clicked. Maybe not, but I wonder.

So I’m slowly learning about baking. I’m a kinesthetic learner – I learn by doing, so it’s taking some trial and error to figure things out. What comes the most naturally to me when cooking is figuring things out as I go; recipes used for inspiration more than direction. That doesn’t really work with baking. But, I guess I’m learning, because these muffins did.

It helps that I know what the batter should look and feel like. The more I bake the more I know about doughs and batters and the like.

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The stars of this recipe are Asian pears and figs, but any seasonal fruit will do: apples, berries, cherries, persimmons… Use what you love and what you have on hand.

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There are also carrots, but you could use parsnips or summer squash in their place.

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I used whole wheat flour and butter. But, of course, adapt it to suit your family’s needs. You could try a gluten-free flour blend if you’d like, or to make it vegan, use cold coconut oil and substitute flax seeds and water for the egg.

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I love Burroughs Family Farms’ eggs, so that’s what I used today. The yolks are always the most brilliant golden yellow. I just can’t get enough!

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I’m pretty picky about what I eat when it comes to sugar. I’m ok with the occasional treat, but in general, I avoid refined white sugar like the plague. Instead I like to use honey and maple syrup. Combine that with the oats, whole wheat flour, vegetable, and fruit that these muffins contain, and I feel great about them for breakfast, lunch, or a satisfying snack.

I was totally going to add chocolate chips. I even had them out on the counter. Then I forgot. Add ’em if you’d like. You could also add nuts. I’m not crazy about them in baked goods. But, to bump up the protein, or just because you like them, you could add some almonds or walnuts either to the batter, or gently press them into the top before baking.

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I enjoyed these with some homemade butter. They’d been cooling for a little while when I finally got a taste, but were still warm enough to melt the butter just slightly. But even without butter (which is how I ate my second one), they’re absolutely delicious.

Happy Eating!

Whole Wheat Pear Muffins

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 22 minutes

Total Time: 37 minutes

Yield: 1 dozen

Whole Wheat Pear Muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 C whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t baking soda
  • 1/4 t cinnamon
  • 1/4 t ginger
  • 1/2 C cold butter (or coconut oil), cut into small chunks
  • 1 C oats
  • 3/4 C any of the following: Asian pears, pears, apples, parsnips, carrots, squash, persimmons, (grated)
  • 1/2 C any of the following: figs, berries, cherries (pits removed), chopped
  • 1/4 C honey (or maple syrup)
  • 1/4 C maple syrup
  • 1 egg (or use ground up flaxseeds and water)
  • 1 t apple cider vinegar
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • (optional: almonds or walnuts, chopped, for topping)

Instructions

  1. Position the rack in the center of the oven and pre-heat to 350F.
  2. Whisk flour through ginger. Mix in butter with a pastry blender or hands until coarse meal or small (pea sized) chunks remain. Stir in oats through fruit. Set in the freezer while you assemble the wet ingredients.
  3. In a separate bowl whisk honey through vanilla. Add to dry ingredients and stir to combine.
  4. Scoop about 3T of batter into each compartment of a greased muffin pan (should yield 1 dozen). Top with nuts if desired, pressing them gently into the batter. Bake for about 20-22 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean and the center of the muffin springs back when touched.
  5. Remove from the oven and cool for about 5 minutes in the pan. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/whole-wheat-pear-muffins/

Thursday

10

September 2015

0

COMMENTS

Veggie Pot Pie

Written by , Posted in Baking, Dairy-Free, Dinner, Eggs, Gluten Free, Herbs, Leftovers, Legumes, Lentils, Main Dishes, One Dish Dinners, Potatoes, Potlucks, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

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Pot pie is one of my favorite foods. I think I say that a lot though. So many foods are favorites that I’m starting to lose track. I guess it depends on the season. Pot pie is one of those dishes that I don’t make all that often during the hot summer months. But, when it finally cools down, it’s all that I want to eat (that and soup, always soup). But, this pot pie can be enjoyed any time of the year, because the veggies can be changed up to suit whatever you’ve got on hand.

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This is a great dish to clean out the produce drawers. That’s what it felt like today. I used mushrooms (great for adding a deep, rich flavor), summer squash (but winter squash would be great here too), carrots, turnips (don’t add too many, otherwise they may overwhelm), eggplant, potatoes, radishes (doesn’t matter what kind), onion, chile pepper, garlic chives, and garlic… It’s at least one of everything that I had on hand, minus the lettuce and tomatoes that I’ll save for another time.

I also added lentils, or you could add tofu if you’d like. They would take the place of the meat in a Chicken Pot Pie, Beef Pot Pie, or Lobster Pot Pie.

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Since there were so many veggies, they took a while to cook. Once they were tender, I added some veggie stock whisked with some all purpose flour (or you could whisk the stock with some cornstarch for a gluten-free version). Once it came to a boil it began to reduce down and thicken, resulting in a nice rich gravy.

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At this point, you could just top the oven-proof skillet with pie crust and pop it into the oven. But, today I wanted to do some individual pot pies, so I greased some ramekins and filled them with the hot filling.

If you’re making this ahead of time, the filling can be cooled at this point and then refrigerated or frozen. To use it, defrost in the fridge for a day, then either heat it up first, or pour it into the baking dish and top with pie crust. If your filling is cold you may want to cover your crust with tinfoil partway through the baking time if it starts to get too brown.

Pot pies can also be covered, baked, and cooled completely, then reheated at a later date. To cool quickly, remove the crust to cool separately. Stir the filling often to get cool air into it. Refrigerate once it’s cooled down (if food is too hot when it goes into the fridge, the fridge temperature may raise to an unsafe temperature).

Of course you could also just stand at the stove and eat it out of the pan… 😉

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I have a favorite pie crust that I make, from Alana’s cookbook, The Homemade Pantry. One crust was perfect for four individual ramekins of pot pie. If you prefer gluten-free, there are flour blends available, or you can just buy a GF crust at your favorite market.

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I can’t decide what’s more favorite, the beautifully browned crust or the savory gravy soaked veggies. Good thing I get to eat them together.

Happy Eating!

Veggie Pot Pie

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 1 minute

Total Time: 1 hour, 21 minutes

Yield: 4

Veggie Pot Pie

Ingredients

  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 C any: potatoes, rutabagas, sweet potatoes, chopped
  • 6-7 C combination of any that you like together: carrots, parsnips, turnips, beets, radishes, eggplant, summer squash, winter squash, onion, shallot, leeks, fennel, celery, greens, cabbage, bell pepper, green beans, peas, broccoli, cauliflower, corn, asparagus
  • to taste salt
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1/2 C lentils or tofu (optional), chopped, if tofu
  • 1/4 C any* (fresh): garlic chives, basil, parsley, oregano, thyme, or rosemary, chopped
  • 1/2 t paprika
  • 1 t dijon mustard
  • 2 T AP flour or 1 T cornstarch whisked with 2 1/4 C cold veggie stock
  • 1 T lemon juice or vinegar
  • 1 pie crust
  • 1 egg (optional), whisked, for brushing
  • salt

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350F.
  2. Heat an oven-proof skillet (unless using individual ramekins, in which case just use a skillet). Add oil. Add veggies and salt. Cook over medium-low for about 15-20 minutes, or until veggies are tender, stirring occasionally. Add garlic through dijon and cook for 1 minute. Add flour or cornstarch and veggie stock mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes, or until sauce has reduced and thickened and all veggies are tender. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice or vinegar. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
  3. Roll out pie crust. Use it to top the oven-proof skillet, or divide the veggie mixture into 4 greased 6" ramekins and top with pie crust (1 crust should be enough for 4 ramekins). Brush with egg if desired, sprinkle with salt, and use a knife to cut some vent holes in the center.. Bake for 30 minutes, or until crust is browned and flaky.
http://www.de-ma-cuisine.com/veggie-pot-pie/