Roasted Butternut Squash and Veggie Soup

Hope you all are enjoying your weekend so far! As I mentioned in an earlier post, I made some yummy recipes last weekend when it was cold outside and I hoped to share a few of them with you.  The cold didn’t last long, yesterday’s high was almost 90.  Welcome to Texas weather.

My favorite was the soup I made. I’m a terrible food photographer but I did take a pic of the finished product. If you thought soup was hard to make, think again. This is really easy and really good for you too! It takes some pre-dinner prep work but will make your house smell great all day.

Roasted Butternut Squash and Veggie Soup

Ingredients:

1 medium size Buternut Squash

2 celery stalks

2 cups mini-carrots

1 cup chopped cauliflower

1 cup chopped onion

2 cloves garlic

1 tsp nutmeg

Vegetable Broth

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

 

Directions:

Roast all vegetables first. Cut the butternut squash lengthwise and scoop out the seeds/pulp. Rub the inside with olive oil and sprinkle with salt pepper and nutmeg. Place flesh side down on baking sheet and roast at 400 degrees for almost an hour.

If you have room in your oven, roast the other vegetables at the same time. In a 9×13 baking dish, combine the garlic, carrots and cauliflower. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast at 400 degrees for almost an hour.

Once all the veggies are roasted, scoop out the squash flesh into a bowl and put aside. In a large saucepan or dutch oven, saute onion and celery in 2 tbsp olive oil until softened. Add squash and other roasted vegetables to pan and mix well. Pour in vegetable broth until all veggies are completely covered and let simmer for 30 minutes.

Put all contents into a blender (careful, it’s hot!) and puree until smooth and creamy. Add more broth if the soup is too thick for your liking.

Pour into serving bowls and enjoy!

YUM!

Yummy Roasted Chickpeas….Just Cuz

Random post:  I’m finally caught up waking with work today and I’m sitting here reading my favorite blogs and munching on the most yummy snack ever.  Spicy roasted chickpeas (garbanzo beans).  I just discovered making them this way a few days ago.  My first attempt went bad — they burnt,  but the ones I have today…aaaaah, party in my mouth.  I thought I’d share the goodness.

So here’s how you make them:

Take a can of chickpeas and rinse them really good. Get all that starchy water off of them.  Then dump them out on some paper towels and dry them off completely. Throw them in a bowl and mix with about 2 tbsp olive oil and spices to your liking.  I used garlic powder,onion powder, red pepper flakes, salt and paprika. Stir them so that all the beans are coated well. Put them in a shallow pan (just a regular aluminum pan worked the best for me) and roast for 35 minutes on 375 degrees, shaking the pan every 10 minutes or so.  After 35 minutes is up, I added just a few squirts of soy sauce and shook them again — baked for another 10 minutes.

You can eat them right away or like me, put them in a bag and take them to work.  Or wherever.  I thought next time I would try using buffalo wing sauce…I love spicy stuff.  Good luck with them, lemme know how you like it!

These are not *exactly* the same chickpeas I’m eating at this very moment, but they will look like this when done. I found this pic on About.com

 

Warning:  It really is true what they say about beans, beans the musical fruit….eating these could be hazardous to the health of those around you.  Seriously.

You’ve been warned

 

My Copycat Kale Cranberry Pepita Salad Recipe

You can see from a previous post my love for Central Market’s Kale Cranberry Pepita salad. I don’t live close to a Central Market so I’m not able to get my hands on it that often, not to mention it’s $5.99/lb! Going by the ingredient label on the salad container I decided to try and make my own. It came out excatly like the real thing! Here’s the recipe, let me know what you think!

Ingredients;

1 large bunch of raw, rinsed, stemmed and chopped kale (yields about 6 cups)

1/2 cup canola oil

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar

1/2 cup orange juice

1/8 cup soy sauce

1 tsp minced onions (in lieu of shallots)

1 tsp ground ginger

1 handful craisins or dried cranberries

1 handful roasted pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds)

1 handful chopped or slivered almonds (roasted or raw)

pinch of salt & pepper

1/2 tsp salt

Optional: slivers of candied ginger to taste (I don’t like it, but it’s in the original salad)

Directions;

Mix all of the ingredients except for the cranberries and seeds together in bowl with a whisk until well combined. Pour on top of kale and mix well until all leaves coated. Sprinkle on the cranberries, almonds and pepitas. Let salad sit for at least 1 hour in the fridge so that kale softens up a bit. Best if eaten the next day!

You can see mine looks just like the store bought kind and tastes the same too!

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Rave: Best Salad in All the Land

Take a look at this:

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This is a kale and pepita salad with orange vinegarette and cranberry dressing from Central Market. It is SO yummy and kale is really good for you.

Looks easy to make too…kale, roasted pepitas, craisins, almonds and candied ginger. The dressing is just olive oil, orange juice, rice vinegar, and a little salt.

If you let it sit for a while before eating, the kale will soften up. It’s best the 2nd day!