Roasted Squash with Spiced Buttered Pistachios and Lemon Yogurt

1 winter squash (about 2 pounds), preferably kabocha, red kuri or acorn

2 T extra-virgin olive oil
1 t sea salt, or more as needed
½ t freshly ground black pepper

4 tablespoons unsalted butter (may substitute vegan butter, such as Earth Balance) ½ C raw shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
½ t ground cumin
½ t ground turmeric

1 pinch ground cinnamon
1 to 2 pinches crushed red pepper flakes (optional)


1 C full-fat Greek yogurt (may substitute low- or non-fat Greek yogurt or your favorite nondairy yogurt)

Zest of 1 lemon

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees with the rack in the middle.

Using a large, sharp knife, stab the squash in the middle and carefully work the knife down to cut the squash in half, going through the stem. Scoop out the seeds and stringy pulp, and discard or reserve for another use. Cut the squash halves into 1 1/2- inch wedges, leaving the peel on.

On a large, rimmed baking sheet, drizzle the squash with the olive oil. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and the pepper and roast for 40 to 50 minutes, until the squash is very tender and golden brown with caramelized bits.

Meanwhile, in a small pot over medium heat, melt the butter. Cook, swirling occasionally, until the butter has browned and started to foam, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the pistachios, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon and pinch of red pepper flakes, if using. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt, taste, and add more salt, if needed.

In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, lemon zest, lemon juice and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon sea salt. Taste and add more salt, if needed. Spread the yogurt sauce over a large serving platter or bowl. Arrange the squash on the sauce and spoon the buttered pistachios over everything. Sprinkle with another pinch of red pepper flakes, if desired, and serve. Serves 4-6.


Farro Soup with Curry Powder, Lentils and Salted Lemon Yogurt

farro

 

Packed with flavor and protein, this soup is a meal unto itself — just add crusty bread and a fruity cobbler for dessert and you’ll be feasting on comfort food at its best — and so so healthy! You’ll be ready to run a marathon the next morning — especially if you repeat for breakfast. This is from from “Super Natural Every Day,” by Heidi Swanson, which you might want to consider putting under the tree of your favorite cook (you know who that is). It was adapted by Danielle for a cooking class at Brookside November 18 2015.

2 T extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
2 yellow onions, chopped
1 C peeled, diced sweet potato or butternut squash
Sea salt
1 T plus 2 t Indian curry powder
2/3 C farro
1 ¼ C green or black lentils, picked over and rinsed
6-8 C low sodium vegetable broth
1 C plain yogurt of Greek-style yogurt
Grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon, or to taste

Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Stir in the onions and sweet potato. Add a big pinch of salt and sauté until the onions soften a bit, a couple of minutes. Add the curry powder; stir until onions and sweet potatoes are coated and the curry is fragrant, a minute or so. Add the farro, lentils and 6 cups of the broth. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer, covered, for 40-50 minutes. Taste and season with more salt, if needed. (Don’t under-salt or the soup will taste flat.) While the soup is cooking, in a small bowl, stir together the yogurt, lemon zest and juice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Serve each bowl of soup topped with a dollop of lemon yogurt and a drizzle of olive oil. Serves 8-10.


Peach-and-Tomato Gazpacho with Cucumber Yogurt

peach-tomato-gazpacho-sl-x This soup is totally refreshing and quite beautiful, especially if you use all-red tomatoes as your base, but a mixture of colors for the chunked-up portion. Yellow or white peaches do great in it, as well as nectarines and even apricots. I don’t bother peeling any of the fruit or veggies (tomatoes, that is — I do peel the onions!). If you plan on doing some ahead, just do the pureed part — once the peach chunks are cut up and added, the soup will  hold up for only about a day or two. Almonds are optional but they do add a nice crunch and their flavor goes beautifully with peaches. Of course, if you’re coming to eat at our house, you’ll have this soup with a soupcon of red pepper flakes! Demoed by Adrienne at US Botanic Garden August 6, 2015. Adapted from a recipe from Southern Living.

5 large peaches, divided
3 large tomatoes, cored and divided
1/2 medium-size sweet onion, coarsely chopped (about ½ C)
3 T apple cider vinegar

1/4 t red pepper flakes (optional)
½ C slivered almonds, toasted and coarsely ground
salt and pepper to taste
3/4 C finely diced cucumber, seeded as needed
1/3 C plain yogurt
2 T minced parsley
1 garlic clove, minced
Extra virgin olive oil to drizzle
snipped chives or minced parsley for garnish
Fresh-ground black pepper

Quarter 4 peaches and 2 tomatoes. Process quartered peaches and tomatoes, onions, vinegar in a food processor until smooth. Chop remaining peach and tomato. Stir into pureed mixture. Add almonds and mix well. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and chill 1-4 hours. Meanwhile, combine cucumber and next 3 ingredients in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper Cover and chill 1 to 24 hours.To serve, ladle soup into bowls, top with 1 T yogurt mixture, drizzle with olive oil, garnish with minced parsley or chives and a grind of pepper.

Yield: Six servings


Caramelized Apples with Rosemary Glaze

apples 3

 

 

1½ cups apple cider
3 sprigs fresh rosemary
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon coarse salt
3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 12 wedges each
olive oil or grapeseed oil
1 cup plain nonfat yogurt, preferably Greek (optional)

Bring cider and rosemary to a boil. Remove from heat, and let stand for 5 minutes. Discard rosemary. Combine sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl. Add apples, and toss. Heat a large non-stick pan on medium-high and add 1T oil. When oil is hot add about half the apples – do not crowd them. Cook vigorously for about 5 minutes until you see apples begin to brown and caramelize; remove and reserve. Add 1 T oil. Add second half of apples and cook vigorously until caramelized, like the first batch. Remove apples and combine the two batches. Pour rosemary cider into the hot pan; continue cooking until the cider is reduced and thickened. Remove from heat; add apples back to the pan and toss to incorporate. Let the apples marinade for up to an hour. Serve at room temperature with yogurt, if desired.


Coriander Roasted Strawberries

roasted

 

 

This is an unusual combination and utterly irresistible. The strawberries are not too sweet and the citrusy notes of the coriander seed are not assertive, but just right.  You could serve the strawberries with mascarpone or even just whipped cream, lightly sweetened.  You could even try the strawberries as part of a cheese course.  Adrienne demoed this at the US Botanic garden May 22 2014. Adapted from inspiredtaste.com. Read More