Monthly Archives: November 2013

Vegan Cream of Butternut Squash Soup


1 large butternut squash; halved and seeds removed (pictured is 1 medium and 1 small squash from our garden)
2 Tablespoons canola or extra virgin olive oil
1 onion; chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 inch piece of fresh ginger; peeled and minced
1 carrot; chopped
1 celery stick; chopped
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
5 cups water (add more for consistency)
salt and white pepper to taste

DSC_0027 DSC_0030Preheat oven to 375° F. Oil a baking sheet/pan. Prepare butternut squash, place cut side down on a prepared baking sheet and bake till soft, about 45 minutes.
DSC_0035 DSC_0036 DSC_0037 DSC_0039Meanwhile sauté the onions with salt on medium low heat until the onions are translucent and soft. Add the ginger, carrots and celery, cover and sauté for 10 more minutes on medium low heat. Add 5 cups of water and simmer.
DSC_0038 DSC_0040When the baked butternut squash has cooled enough to handle scrape out the squash from the skins and add it to the broth.
DSC_0043Puree the ingredients with a handheld blender and reheat. Add more water as needed for the consistency and salt and white pepper to taste. You can also add all of the ingredients to a countertop blender and puree till creamy then return to the pot and reheat. Garnish with nutmeg if desired.


Gluten Free, Vegan Mushroom Soup

My sister-in-law, Jennifer Schonborn, wrote about the many health benefits of mushrooms in her latest holistic nutrition newsletter. I had purchased 2 containers of mushrooms for the week because they were on sale. One of the healthy meals she mentioned was mushroom barley soup. Which I love. But barley has gluten… what to do? I used steel cut oats instead of barley and it worked very nicely.
2-3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion; diced
1 carrot; diced
1 stick celery; diced
1 teaspoon sea salt
10 oz mushrooms; diced (I used the small white buttons but any mushroom will do and there are so many with great flavors)
pinch oregano
pinch thyme
1 turkish bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
5 cups water
1/2 cup steel cut oats

Saute onion, carrot, celery and salt in olive oil under low heat with lid on for 5 minutes. Add mushrooms, stir and continue to saute for another 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, reduce and simmer for 20 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. Xav and I had tempeh sandwiches on fresh baked rolls (gluten free pictured) to make this a hearty comfort meal.
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Gluten and Dairy Free Roll/English Muffin

This recipe is a result of some experimenting inspired by Gluten Free Girl’s recipe for dinner rolls. I made an amazing tempeh sandwich last night for dinner and toasted one this morning to have with breakfast. Spongy, airy and delicious! I almost didn’t miss the real thing.
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1 cup oat flour
1 cup all purpose gluten free flour (I used Trader Joe’s; brown rice, potato starch, rice, tapioca)
1 Tablespoon xanthan gum
1 Tablespoon yeast
1 teaspoon sea salt
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (or canola; if you can tolerate dairy you can use butter)
1 1/2 cups warm water

Generously oil (if you can tolerate dairy use butter) extra large muffin tins.
DSC_0007 DSC_0009 DSC_0010 DSC_0011Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the oil (if you can tolerate dairy use butter) and combine to a crumbly mixture. Add the warm water and combine into a pancake like batter. DSC_0012 DSC_0014 DSC_0015 DSC_0017Ladle to 1/2 fill muffin tins, cover with plastic and let rest for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 375. Place tins in oven and bake for 40-45 minutes. Release from pans and allow to cool. I used a knife around the edges of the muffin tin on the ones that were a bit stuck.

Planting Garlic in the Fall

DSC_0017The last task of the vegetable gardening season is planting garlic. Once the killing frost (mwahaha) has taken the remaining plants they are pulled up and piled into the compost, the earth is turned, compost soil and manure are mixed in and the rows for garlic are furrowed.
DSC_0015 DSC_0016This year I ordered 2 lbs of organic Music Garlic from Peaceful Valley which translates to 16 heads/88 cloves.  After separating the cloves (careful not to break the skins around the individual cloves) the task of placing them root side down and covering with soil is easy.
DSC_0018My rows are a foot apart but you can go as close as 8 inches, planting depth is 3-4 inches in CT and the cloves are spaced 5-6 inches apart. I  supplemented with 14 cloves from garlic purchased at the grocery store to finish off the third furrow. I know, poor planning, but this is the first year that I actually ordered garlic before it was sold out. Waiting until October in past years I was forced to use grocery store garlic if I was going to plant my own- which, by the way, works. Once all of the cloves have been placed in the furrows (assembly line for efficiency) cover with soil, compress and wait.
DSC_0019The only evidence of the garlic are the footprints from my clogs that compressed the soil. Xav always makes fun of my clogs but honestly, they are super versatile. He even used one of my clogs as a hammer recently.