a little of each

A family's cookbook

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup March 27, 2013

Filed under: Soups and Salads — alittlemoreofeach @ 8:32 pm
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The flavor in this soup is wonderful – hearty and delicate at the same time. It thickened up quite a bit on me, becoming almost a stew, but a little extra chicken stock helped.

 

Ingredients

1 large butternut squash (about 1 ¾ lbs), halved and seeded

¼ cup olive oil, divided

6 fresh sage leaves

2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced

2 cups chopped onion (give or take)

¾ cup chopped leeks (white part only)

½ to 1 cup fat-free half and half

3 to 4 cups chicken or veggie broth

salt

10 slices French bread

1 Tbl olive oil

pepper, sour cream, chopped parsley and sage as optional garnishes

 

Directions

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with foil. Rub inside of each squash with 1 Tbl olive oil, then fill each half with 3 sage leaves. Place squash face down on prepared sheet and bake until tender, about 30 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes, discard sage, then scoop out squash and transfer to a bowl. Set aside. Heat remaining oil in a stockpot over medium heat. Sauté apples, onions and leeks until apples are tender and onions are translucent, about 10 to 12 minutes. Add squash, half and half and enough chicken broth to cover; simmer 5 minutes. Blend with an immersion blender to desired consistency, and then stir in additional chicken broth to desired consistency. Add salt to taste. To make croutons or crostini, drizzle the olive oil over the bread slices, along with a little salt and pepper and broil briefly in a toaster. Float the toasted bread along with additional garnishes on a serving of soup.

 

Baked Winter Squash Soup December 21, 2012

Filed under: Soups and Salads — alittlemoreofeach @ 1:08 pm
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Ingredients (serves 12)

  • 2 acorn squash (about 2 pounds each)
  • 2 butternut squash (about 2 pounds each)
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 8 teaspoons dark brown sugar
  • 3 carrots, peeled and halved
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 10 cups chicken broth
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground mace
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • salt, to taste
  • creme fraiche, for garnish

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cut the four squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out and discard seeds.

Place the squash halves, skin side down, in a shallow roasting pan. Place 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 teaspoon of brown sugar in the cavity of each squash half. Arrange the carrots and onion slices around the squash. Pour two cups of stock in the pan, cover it tightly with aluminum foil and bake for two hours.

Remove the pan from the oven, and allow the vegetables to cool slightly. Scoop the squash pulp out of the skins and place it in a soup pot. Add the carrots, onions, and the cooking liquid.

Add the remaining eight cups of chicken broth, and the mace, ginger, cayenne, and salt. Stir well, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.

Puree the soup in batches in a blender or food processor until smooth. Return it to the pot, adjust the seasonings and heat through. Serve each portion garnished with a dollop of creme fraiche.

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Butternut Squash Ziti December 20, 2012

Filed under: Pasta and Grains — alittlemoreofeach @ 8:40 pm
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Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 butternut squash
  • 1 pound ziti
  • 1 cup half & half (or cream)
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg (fresh grated is best)
  • 8 ounces Gruyere cheese
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

Place halved squashes cut-side down on a cookie sheet. Poke repeatedly with a fork.

Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes until the squash are super-tender. The cooking time will vary depending on the size of the squash.

When the squash are cool enough to handle, scoop all the meat out with a spoon and add it to your food processor bowl, or just a big bowl for mashing.

Combine the half and half (or cream), cayenne pepper, nutmeg, and about half of the cheese with the butternut squash. Puree it until smooth and season with a good pinch of salt and pepper.

If it’s not really creamy, add a bit more Half & Half or cream. Also, give it a taste at this point. It should be really smooth and flavorful with just a tiny amount of spice.

Cook the ziti and then mix the butternut squash mixture and the ziti noodles together. Butter a 9×13 baking dish well. Add all the ziti and smooth it out, then sprinkle on the rest of the cheese.

Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until the cheese is really melted and the ziti is slightly browned around the edges. Let it cool for a few minutes before eating/serving.

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