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Chicken, Chard, Bean and Butternut Squash Soup

February 5, 2014 - Written by Diana

I told you I was going healthy for the Superbowl.  We brought this  – Chicken, Chard, Bean and Butternut Squash Soup.  We also brought some berries and greek yogurt with honey – plus vegan chocolate avocado cupcakes.  We did splurge though because my sister in law made some awesome queso with sausage that was great with chips and they also had some Buffalo Wild Wings.  It was a small gathering, but there was plenty of food and even though our favorite team disappointed, we had a good time (well most of us).

I bought my butternut squash last fall at the farmer’s market.  We put them into baskets and stored them on shelves in the unheated basement.  The food doesn’t freeze down there, but it does get rather nippy downstairs. Last year I tried storing them in a warmer spot, but some of my squash went bad.  This year, they are in perfect condition and not even drying out.  I’m thrilled that we put up a nice shelving unit to use for winter storage.

Anyway, I also have been trying to work with beans more, but dry beans not canned beans, and so that was the start of this soup. I roasted most of the vegetables in a glass pan in the oven until almost cooked.  I also baked the chicken breast rather than fry it up.  I wanted the broth to be clear when I served it and not muddied, which is why I did it this way.  And to give it a nice bright taste, I grated lemon peel and squeezed lemon juice into it.  This soup is one of my best tasting, I recommend it for family dinner, or a gathering of friends, or just the two of you.

Ingredients:

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Butternut Squash with a Maple Bourbon Glaze

November 25, 2013 - Written by Diana

It’s just the two of us now, and some nights it’s difficult to want to cook.  All summer I could call my kids and tell them to start dinner. Now they’re both gone, we are tired , the pets need to be fed, and we don’t want to think about preparing a meal.  I think sometimes it’s more difficult to cook for two; it’s easier to think about just skipping it and going for the ice cream.  On the night my husband wasn’t home, I made myself an egg sandwich, but the next night I was determined to provide us with something delicious and nutritious and I wasn’t popping it into the microwave, Butternut Squash with a  Maple Bourbon Glaze.  I had butternut squash and I was going to use it, even if it was too big for two people, yay, we had leftovers too.  I think maple and bourbon are very friendly flavors, and on the butternut with a little melted butter they were perfect.

Ingredients:

Slice the butternut squash in half and scoop out the seeds.  Whisk together the butter, the bourbon and the maple syrup.  Brush the cut halves with the glaze and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake in oven (we actually used the toaster oven) on 400 until you can poke it with a fork and it gives nicely, brushing every so often with the glaze.

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Butternut Squash under a Swiss Cheese Crust

November 25, 2013 - Written by Diana

I still have butternut squash in my basement, but as the basement warms up, the squash will be in peril.  I’m glad they lasted as long as they did, since this is the first year we tried basement storage.  Last year we kept the winter squash upstairs, and they didn’t last as long.  I’m going to make Butternut Squash Under a Swiss Cheese Crust for our family Easter gathering.  I made it for dinner one night and my husband was really impressed, so impressed he wants me to make it again. I used curry in the dish to keep it from being too sweet, but also added nutmeg and cinnamon because I love the taste with butternut squash and  I also added nutmeg to the cheese sauce.  The swiss cheese was hand delivered from Wisconsin. A friend of my husband’s brought us back cheese from a recent trip. Isn’t it cool to have a friend like that? My favorite prep method for butternut squash is to slice it down the middle, scooping the seeds and pulp out, but leaving the meat behind.  Then it is brushed with olive oil, and placed cut side down in a glass pan.   It goes into the oven at about 350 and bakes until a knife slides in easily. Ingredients:

Bake butternut squash until soft.  Cool and then scoop butternut squash out of the shell into a bowl.  Use a mixer to combine the squash milk, nutmeg, cinnamon and curry.  Place in a buttered casserole dish. In a small saucepan melt butter and whisk in flour.  Slowly whisk in cold milk until smooth.  Take off heat and whisk in the cheese. Spread cheese sauce over top of the squash (add more cheese if you need a thicker consistency).  Bake in oven at 350 until cheese starts to  brown and crusty.

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Chicken & Fall Vegetable Soup

November 2, 2011 - Written by Diana

Staying with my mom while she recovers from her surgery, I made Chicken & Fall Vegetable soup for dinner.  Soup makes you feel good when you are sluggish and don’t want something heavy, especially if your throat is a little sore too. My mom is a fan of almost all vegetables, and since the fall vegetables are in season, this is the perfect time to make this soup.  It is easy to prepare but will take longer than 30 minutes because it takes  a while for the carrots and butternut squash to soften.  The soup was served in a bowl over warmed wild rice.  The rice would absorb the stock from the soup so we precooked the rice separately and then put a couple of tablespoons in the bowl and ladle the soup over top.  The leftovers were stored as single servings in the freezer for meals on busy evenings after I left to go back to my family and home.

Mom can’t eat onions or tomatoes; acidic vegetables and fruit upset her tummy.  If you feel it could use a few more vegetables, feel free to go ahead and add them.  Mushrooms might be nice added to this also.

Ingredients:

Directions:

In a stock pot heat up 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Saute diced celery and whole chicken breasts.  Pull the chicken out of the stock pot, and add in the quart of chicken broth and heat.  Dice carrots and butternut squash and add to stock.  Tear chicken into bite size pieces.  When the carrots have softened but are still firm, add the chicken back in along with the chickpeas. Tear kale leaves and stir it into the stock along with ground sage, thyme, salt and pepper to taste.  Serve in bowl over warm wild rice.

Butternut Squash, Sausage and Campanelle Pasta

December 13, 2009 - Written by Diana

I had some great butternut squash just waiting for me to find the time to do something great with it. I put off using squash because it takes a while to seed and peel, but it’s such a terrific ingredient.  I found some soup recipes, but it wasn’t what I wanted.  So I came up with a pasta dish that was really tasty good, and hopefully good for you.  The only change I’d make is to cook the butternut squash a little bit less.  I used about a 1/2 of a butternut squash, and probably I should have used only a half a pound of sweet italian turkey sausage.  There were three of us at dinner, plus enough leftovers for two people, so cutting down the sausage makes sense.  There isn’t a lot of fat in this dish, but I can’t tell you how many calories or fat since I don’t know.

 

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Directions:

Melt butter in a large sauce pan, then add pecans and toast until lightly browned. Place the pecans in a bowl and set aside.  Add 3 tbs of olive oil to the pan and when it is warmed, add the squash and the garlic cloves.  Saute until al dente.  If you like if soft, go for soft.  Ours was a little softer, but still really delicious.Remove pan from heat when it is ready.  At the same time heat 2 tsp oil in pan, then place turkey sausage and onions and brown.  On one more burner, place a pot of water to boil for the pasta.  When the sausage is almost ready, dump the pasta into the pot.  Drain the sausage and the onions, slice the turkey sausage so that it’s about the same size as the squash.  Drain pasta and dump everything into the pot and stir.  In the pan that had the squash, add a little butter and turn the heat on low, then add 1/4 cup white wine and simmer.  Pour into the pot with everything else, add in the parmesan and fold everything together.

 

You can probably substitute the pasta for another type, this is one I bought because it was interesting looking and it worked out well for this meal.

Roasted Apple and Butternut Squash

December 4, 2009 - Written by Diana

Here’s a way the whole family will enjoy butternut squash and apple.  I used a splash of orange, plus grated the rind and ginger.  This was fabulous, fantastic, divine, delicious and good tasting.  Butternut squash is so delicious and nutritious for you and such a great autumn food to serve.  Apples go well with it, and the orange gives it sweetness without adding sugar.

I told my son to tell me it tasted wonderful, and after he tasted, he agreed.  If you have kids that balk at squash, this is the way to serve it.

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Oh, this dish is heavenly good.  I think I’m bringing it to my mom for Christmas.

Roasted Apple and Butternut Squash
 
Ingredients
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 3 or 4 apples, peeled, cored and diced
  • 1 orange peel – zested
  • 1 tbs grated ginger
  • Olive oil for pan
  • Nutmeg
Instructions
  1. I parboiled the squash so that the apple wouldn’t get mushy from baking too long. Oil a baking dish. Drain the butternut squash, and toss with apple in baking dish. Grate ginger, then zest orange and toss that with the butternut squash and apple. I squeezed a little of the orange over top of the dish too and then lightly sprinkled nutmeg over top. Bake at 350 until soft, but not mushy, with a little bit of firmness.