Days 203/204

Food spam ahead, although for clarification there is no actually SPAM in the food that I’ll be talking about.

While I do have some non-food related projects in mind, I’ve found myself wanting to share some of my favourite recipes with you. Since I don’t tend to buy any pre-packaged or processed foods, I do a lot of cooking. I love cooking, I love baking and I love trying new things and tweaking recipes to get it just right. I’m hoping that you don’t mind me sharing so many food related projects!

Day 203

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

The old standby in terms of soup. The butternut squash is one of my favourite vegetables and I’m hoping that I can try and grow some this year so that by the end of the year I can make a 100% locally grown soup. While I’ve made variations of this soup before, I’ve never taken the time to roast the squash and garlic first. While I agree that roasting brings out the sweetness it also makes scooping out the flesh of the squash a little trickier and I think I prefer just using the fresh squash as is, boiling it in the soup and then pureeing it all together. Either way, here is the recipe:
 

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
(serves 8)
 
2 large butternut squash
2 large cloves garlic
2 Tbs olive oil
2 large carrots, cut in half lengthwise and sliced
2 stalks celery, sliced
1 medium sweet onion, diced
1 Tbs fresh thyme leaves
4 cups vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375. Cut squash in half lengthwise, and scoop out seeds. Place squash, cut side up in baking dish with about 1/4 inch water. Roast in oven until soft, about 45 minutes. While squash is roasting, place garlic cloves, skin on, in aluminum foil drizzled with olive oil, and roast along with squash.
In a large soup pot, heat 2 Tbs olive oil over medium-high heat and saute carrots, celery and onion, until soft. Stir in thyme and continue to cook until fragrant. Add vegetable stock and bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer. Once squash is cooked, scoop the flesh into a food processor along with the roasted garlic (skins removed) and puree until smooth and creamy.
Add squash puree to soup, return to a boil and stir puree to loosen and combine, then reduce heat to simmer. Salt and pepper to taste, and keep warm until ready to serve. I left the vegetables whole in mine to keep it a little chunky, you could run your hand blender through it if you prefer a creamier, smoother soup.

Day 204

Tofu Scramble (I can’t even type that without hearing it in an Otesha-fied cow’s voice)

Last week while at the natural food store I spotted an item that I’ve been hearing a lot of from vegan friends. Daiya “cheese”. If you’ve ever had cheese alternatives in the past you’ll know that they are rather slimy, have a distinct soy taste and don’t really resemble cheese at all. Well, Daiya is the complete opposite of that. It is simply the best vegan cheese alternative I’ve ever had and I’m already on the second bag in a week.  The great thing about it is that it’s a canadian product that doesn’t use soy in it’s processing. It’s worth a try for sure.  I’ve used it so far in sandwhiches, pizza, wraps and decided to try it with tofu in a tofu scramble, using a recipe from their website. One word…. delicious.

Tofu Scramble

Ingredients
1 brick medium firm Tofu
1 cup  chopped mushroom and peppers (or vegetable of choice)
1 tbsp  nutritional yeast
2 tbsp chopped chives
3 tbsp  milk (Soy / Almond / Hemp)
1/2 tsp  garlic powder
1-3 tsp  tumeric
1/4 cup  Daiya Cheddar Style Shreds

DirectionsSet a non-stick pan over medium heat.

Saute veggies and chives in olive oil until desired tenderness (recommend 4 – 5 minutes).   Mash the tofu, milk alternatives and spices in a bowl until tofu is crumbled. 

Add tofu mixture to veggies and cook for several minutes until the tofu is hot.  Then mix in Daiya cheddar Style shreds, remove from heat and serve.

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