Saturday, December 27, 2014

Pumpkin Pie made with Butternut Squash #GardenCuizine

Pumpkin Pie 
made with Butternut Squash
Low in saturated fat, a good source of calcium, 
and a very good source of Vitamin A

Have you ever noticed that Christmas carols sing of pumpkin pie being served during the holidays? "...when they pass around the coffee and the pumpkin pie..."

Baking your own pie guarantees quality ingredients for you, your family and friends. Enjoy pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving and at Christmas too. 

This year we had locally grown butternut squash available so I made pumpkin pie using fresh roasted butternut squash instead of canned pumpkin. It was one of the best pumpkin pies ever! Try butternut squash for a delicious substitute to canned pumpkin.

Click here for my pumpkin pie recipe published online.

Simply substitute pureed butternut squash for canned pumpkin.

Looking for the perfect pumpkin pie crust? 
Click here for my GardenCuizine pumpkin pie dough recipe.

Happy Holidays!
Blog post and photo Copyright © Wind. All rights reserved.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Better Butternut Squash Soup #wintersquash #GardenCuizine #JerseyFresh

Better Butternut Squash Soup
I've been recently testing and tasting recipes for our first outpatient dietitian hospital cooking class at Inspira Health Network. The class - "Soup's On" - featured nutritious butternut squash soup. My recipe uses soy milk so that anyone who is lactose intolerant can enjoy it too. Heavy, calorie-laden cream is not needed to make delicious cream soups.

A quick Google search will reveal a variety of ways to make butternut squash soup. I posted a recipe years ago using cinnamon and vanilla soy milk. Back then, I may have used "vanilla" soy milk because that was all we had in the house at the time. This version tasted even better with added curry, fresh ginger root and plain, versus vanilla, soy milk.

And, for those who tell me that they can't afford to eat healthy: the soup cost only about 58 cents per cup - more evidence that you can Cook Healthy on a Budget!

Yields 3 quarts - note: freezes well

one 2 to 3 pound butternut squash OR 2 bags (16 oz. chopped frozen butternut squash)

1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped carrots
1/8 teaspoon (tsp.) minced dried hot peppers from your garden (or hot pepper flakes)
1 tablespoon no salt butter (or vegetable oil)
1 tsp. fresh grated ginger root (or one cube of frozen ginger*)
1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp. salt
pinch fresh grated black pepper
2 cups low fat chicken broth (or water)
1 quart plain soy milk (or 2% milk)
Putting it all together
Step 1

Decide how you want to cook the squash. 
Wash hands. 
If roasting squash: Preheat oven to 350 deg. F.
Wash vegetables
Prep onions, celery and carrots: peel and chop - set aside.

Step 2
  • Prep squash: cut ends off both sides. 
  • If sauteing directly in the soup pot: cut in half across the middle and peel skin; cut each piece lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Cut into cubes. OR for convenience use precut, frozen butternut squash.
  • If baking: Cut in half across the middle; cut again so there are 4 pieces. Rub olive oil on cut sides of squash. Place squash cut side down on foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 350 deg. F. until soft (about 30 minutes); remove from oven - scoop out seeds. Return to oven and continue baking until squash is full cooked and the edges show caramelizing and a little browning.
Step 3
  • In stockpot saute chopped veggies in 1 T butter or oil for 10 minutes
  • Stir in hot pepper flakes
  • Stir in remaining seasonings
  • Add 2 cups broth OR water and bay leaf. Cover, simmer and cook until veggies are soft
Step 4
  • Remove bay leaf
  • Stir in milk
  • Puree in blender or with hand-held immersion blender
  • Taste and adjust seasonings as needed
Enjoy with a few homemade whole grain herb pita chips

Buon Appetito! 

GardenCuizine Nutrition Data Butternut Squash Soup: 1 cup soup
Excellent Source: Vitamin A, Vitamin C
Good Source: Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Riboflavin, Folate, B12, Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium

Calories: 111; total fat: 3g; Sodium 246mg (10%DV); total Carbohydrate: 20g; dietary Fiber: 1g (4%DV); Sugars 6g; Protein 4g; Vitamin A 17250IU (345%DV wow!); Vitamin C 22.6mg (38%DV); Vitamin D: ~39.7IU (~10%DV); Vitamin E ~2mg (~10%DV); Riboflavin 0.2mg (13%DV); Folate 32mcg (11%DV); B12 1mcg (17%DV); Calcium 170mg (17%DV); Magnesium 57mg (14%DV); Potassium 593mg (17%DV)

 *thanks D.A. for introducing me to frozen ginger cubes! Ask for frozen ginger at your local supermarket.
Photos and blog post Copyright (C)Wind. All rights reserved.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash #GardenCuizine #wintersquash

Cooking Spaghetti Squash

Cooked spaghetti squash resembles spaghetti strands when pulled with a fork, making it unique among winter squashes. The pulled squash can be eaten as is, or tossed with pasta sauce or garlic butter - with, or without added veggies. Spaghetti squash tastes delicious sautéed with spinach. And, make extra because leftovers can be refrigerated and easily reheated.

Note: this is another GardenCuizine "freestyle" recipe, meaning that you can use any amount of the ingredients you desire based on how many people you are cooking for. You don't need to use specific amounts. However, for those who prefer to follow a recipe I will note the amounts for serving 4 people the next time I cook it. Winter squash can be cooked many different ways: boiling, sautéing, steaming; roasting is best flavor.

I recently made it for a crowd at Inspira Health Network's Bariatric Holiday Party!

Spaghetti squash 
olive oil
salt and pepper

Additional ingredients for Spaghetti Squash with Spinach
chopped onion
pinch chopped hot peppers
butter (or olive oil)
Parmesan cheese (or grated soy cheese if vegan)
chopped Spinach
broth (veggie or chicken)
Putting it all together 
Preheat oven to 350° F
  • Cut a small portion off of each end. Cut the squash lengthwise. 
  • Rub olive oil on the cut side.
  • Place cut side down on a foil lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.
  • Take out of oven and scoop out seeds. Season with salt and pepper. Return to oven cut side down and continue baking until fully cooked and the flesh touching the foil is slightly browned (may take another 30 minutes or so).
  • When done, flip squash halves over so that their cut side is now facing up. Using a fork, pull the squash out of the skin into a serving bowl. Set aside if planning to sauté with spinach. The empty skins can be used as serving bowls if desired.
Spaghetti Squash with Spinach: In a sauté pan over medium heat, melt butter (or olive oil). Add onion and hot pepper; cook until onion is translucent. Stir in garlic; stir in chopped spinach. Add cooked spaghetti squash; gently mix together with grated cheese. Add a little broth as needed to moisten. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Can be made ahead and reheated before serving. 

GardenCuizine Nutrition Data Spaghetti Squash coming soon...
Buon Appetito!

Copyright ©Wind. All rights reserved.