Dreamy, Creamy Roasted Carrot-Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk

 

Soups are year round at our table, but particular soups start showing up around November when there are no fresh vegetables to be had at the farmer’s markets but plenty of fall and winter squash, fat carrots and papery onions. This trifecta had been languishing in my kitchen for over a week waiting for inspiration which manifested itself in this simple, but elegant and easy-to-make creamy soup.  Healthy ingredients oven roasted,  unsweetened coconut milk instead of cream, and spicy with the addition of Berbere seasoning and dried French thyme makes for one great winter soup.

Carrots, squash and onions drizzled with olive oil and generously seasoned with black pepper….

…oven roasted for 15 minutes and then pureed with other ingredients….

… becomes a lovely pot of soup. Add a few interesting, textural toppings and enjoy.

Sources…because sometimes it’s nice to share:

Dreamy, Creamy Roasted Carrot-Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut Milk

 

 

 

 

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium to large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped (5-6 cups)
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • freshly ground black pepper and sea salt
  • 2 cups low fat or no fat chicken broth + 2 cup water
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon Berbere seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon French or other dried thyme
  • Garnish: shredded coconut, roasted and salted pipits, pomegranate seeds (optional)
  • Suggested: serve with a baguette cut into slices, top with gruyere cheese and toasted

Directions:

  1. Turn oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread carrot, squash and onion chunks out and drizzle with olive oil and season with sea salt and black pepper. Roast for 15 minutes until carrots are softened.
  2. Scrape roasted vegetables into a soup pot and add the 2 cups chicken broth and water. Turn heat to medium-high and bring to a boil. Turn heat to medium-low and cook for 15 minutes. Stir often. Remove from heat and let cool a few 10 minutes.
  3. Working in batches, puree ingredients in a blender or food processor and add back to the pot over medium low heat.
  4. Stir in coconut milk. Add Bebere seasoning and dried French thyme. Taste and adjust seasonings to your liking adding more salt and pepper if desired.
  5. Serve hot topped with garnishes if you prefer with gruyere toast alongside.

Teresa Blackburn     http://www.teresablackburnfoodstyling.com

Pumpkin Ginger Scones with a Maple Drizzle

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“November always seemed to me the Norway of the year.”  Emily Dickinson.

I, for one, love late fall. It is not the anticipation of the Holidays, nor all the hoopla that goes with them, but the foods. Pumpkins for pies & cakes, winter squash, deep reddish-brown sweet potatoes, the aroma of sage…it is finally time to crank up the oven again and bake.

These pumpkin scones I made around Thanksgiving week last year. Recently I pulled out my recipe to make them again. They are easy, seasonal and have some of my favorite baking ingredients for this time of year.

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Pumpkin, brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and a pinch of cardamom. Kerrygold butter and white whole wheat flour.

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A really good quality crystallized ginger from The Ginger People. This really pushed the flavor over the top of goodness.

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The dough is enough to make 2 rounds or 12 scones.

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Pattycake, pattycake & brush with cream……each cut into 6 scones.

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Sanding sugar, pumpkin seeds or pepitas, a drizzle of maple syrup.

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Fresh from the oven with more maple syrup drizzled over the top. Best eaten warm.

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Pumpkin Ginger Scones with a Maple Syrup Drizzle

  • Servings: 12
  • Print

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Ingredients:

  • 2 3/4 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup brown/raw sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp each ground cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger
  • 1/2 cup butter, cut into small chunks and chilled
  • 1 cup fresh or canned pumpkin
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tbsp cream
  • 1/4 cup sanding sugar
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds/pepitas
  • 1/2 cup real maple syrup (divided)

Directions:

  1. Whisk together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt & spices.
  2. Add butter chunks and with your fingers or a pastry blender work the butter into the flour mixture until crumbly. Stir in the chopped crystallized ginger.
  3. In another bowl whisk together the pumpkin and eggs.
  4. Add pumpkin mixture to the flour mixture and stir just until a dough forms.
  5. Using your hands form the dough into two balls & then flatten both slightly.
  6. Line a baking sheet with parchment & lightly flour. Place dough rounds on pan.
  7. Flatten and shape each dough round into a 6-7 inch circle, each about 1″thick.
  8. Brush the top of each one with cream. Cut each dough circle into 6 wedges.
  9. Sprinkle tops with sanding sugar & pumpkin seeds. Chill 30 minutes before baking.
  10. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Right before baking drizzle tops with half the maple syrup. Bake for about 25 minutes or until scones are golden brown. Check doneness by sticking a toothpick into the center…if needed, bake another 5 minutes.
  11. Drizzle hot scones with the remaining maple syrup. Eat warm.

Notes: These scones could be made with Butternut Squash and use Pecans or walnuts  or dusted with cinnamon sugar.   Teresa Blackburn, Food on Fifth

“Hola! Granola” (A Gluten-Free Swimsuit Crash Course)

Hola Granola

 I was in Quintana Roo, Mexico at the beach recently. Meaning I lived in my swimsuit. Lounging on  the beach, daily snorkeling in the turquoise sea, swinging carefree in a hammock every afternoon….did I say I lived in my swimsuit?

 Ay Dios Mios!

Need I say more?…..

gluten free granola

Yes! Upon checking out a few post vacation photos taken of me by my traveling companion, Terry M, it is now definitely “Hola! Granola” time for me!

This recipe is easy, gluten-free and has a few special ingredients…dried white peaches, pepitas, Quinoa & molasses along with a splash of fresh lemon juice to brighten all the flavors.

Here is what you will need:

3 cups Gluten-Free Oats (Bob’s Red Mill)

1/2 cup each – dried White Peaches (Trader Joe’s), dried Cranberries, unsweetened Coconut Flakes or Shreds, Pepitas (Pumpkin Seeds), Quinoa (I used a tri-color, but any will be fine)

 1 cup slivered Almonds,

1/4 cup Honey  + 1 generous Tbsp. Molasses mixed together with the juice of 1/2 lemon & 1/4 cup olive oil

Sprinkle of Sea Salt

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large mixing bowl toss together the Gluten-Free Oats, slivered Almonds, Pepitas & Quinoa. Drizzle the Honey-Molasses-Lemon Juice-Olive Oil mixture over and toss until ingredients are well coated. Spread out on a rimmed baking sheet.  Bake for 10 minutes, then stir.  Bake another 10 minutes & stir again. After 20 minutes remove the pan from the oven &  add the dried  fruit & coconut to the pan and toss together well. Bake another 20 minutes. “Hola! Granola” should be a medium-light golden brown. Remove pan from the oven to cool completely to “crunch up” before storing in glass jars with tight-fitting lids.

This recipe does not come with a money-back guarantee, but if you eat this every morning with some fat-free or low-fat Greek Yogurt (high in protein), carry a little bag  around to munch on for a mid-day snack, and take a lots of long walks “Hola! Granola” will no doubt be very effective as a “Swimsuit Crash Course” whether on a Mexico Beach or just lounging in your backyard.

Try it and let me know how it is working.

Dive In

It’s almost Spring. Adios Winter!