Tag Archives: butternut squash

Coconut Ginger Butternut Squash Soup

Starting Monday, Ben & I will be joining our gym’s call to partake in the “Lean & Green Challenge.”  Before I divulge into what it entails, let me say that I can already imagine the expression on your face as you continue reading.  And I’m actually looking forward to it (in some respects).  It is a Paleo eating style, which means we will be eating as Paleolithic people.  You got that? Okay, well, it means we only eat lean meats, vegetables, limited fruit, nuts & seeds and good fats (olive oil, coconut oil, nut oils, nut butters, etc).  That means we will not be eating any grains (containing gluten and gluten-free), dairy, sugars, or legumes (yes peanuts are a part of that).

I, of course, prefaced it with what we can eat, because most people upon hearing what we can’t eat automatically ask, “Well, what CAN you eat?”  The next question, “Kamille, why are you doing this?  What does this mean with baking?” Good question!  Ben and I have been looking at our Family Mission (reading this great book) and our top priority is getting our family healthy.  Ben joined Jogo in March, me in August, my mental health turned for the worse and we want more from life. Friends & co-Jogomates have testified the goodness of doing Paleo.  How aches, pains, intestinal problems, weight around the gut, etc went away after following a Paleo food lifestyle (Robb Wolf), along with regular cardio-exercise.  So really, I would have to ask myself, “Why wouldn’t I join the “L&G Challenge?”

And about baking…well, to be quite honest, I haven’t really wanted to bake much these days.  Maybe it’s a mixture of exercise, lack of time, demands of family?  And maybe I’m just burnt out.  What I am excited about is loving my family in these next 30 days by preparing & cooking food that will be good to their body, help me menu plan (for once anyway) and most likely have a tighter rein on the food budget.  Plus, we have a 1/2 a cow in our deep freezer, so here’s to using it.  One of my recipes is this soup, which puts a twist on an Autumn classic.  The coconut is subtle enough, which is why I didn’t use a whole can (but you certainly could) and plays on the creaminess known to the butternut squash.  The ginger adds bite & spice to make it come a bit alive.  Stay tuned as our family embarks on this adventure, and hopefully share a recipe or two:)

A Year Ago:  Simple MealsJuxtaposition

Coconut Ginger Butternut Squash Soup (printable recipe)

If you want to substitute the water for warm chicken broth, go right ahead, because it would add a greater depth of flavor to it.

Ingredients:

2 butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed, cut into 1 inch cubes

1 small onion, roughly cut into large dice

extra virgin olive oil

kosher salt

1/2 cup coconut milk

3-5 cups water

2 tsp ground ginger

1/2 tsp finely grated ginger

Garnish options: olive oil, kosher salt, red pepper chili flakes, cilantro

Directions: Preheat oven to 425.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place butternut squash & onion on parchment paper.  Drizzle with olive oil, mix around with hands, sprinkle a bit of salt on top.  Roast for about 30-35 minutes, check the squash (a fork should pierce right through).

Add the roasted squash & onions in batches to the blender.  Add 1/4 cup coconut milk and about 1/2 cup of water.  Put a towel on top of the lid to avoid getting burnt by the steam.  Blend until completely pureed.  You most likely will need to add more water along the way.  Continue doing this, until all the squash/onion mixture is pureed; as well as, the coconut milk is gone.

Transfer the puree to a large pot and bring up to medium heat.  Add more water, 1/2 cup portion at a time, until you get the consistency you prefer.  Add ground ginger & freshly grated ginger (using a microplane zester).  Add salt to taste.  If you need a bit of acid, then squeeze in the juice of 1/2 a lime–taste and if you think it needs the other 1/2–go ahead and add it.

Ladle into bowl, drizzle a bit of olive oil on top, along with red pepper chili flakes, some cilantro and a pinch of coarse salt.


Thankfulness Squash Galette

It’s almost Thanksgiving and I really should be in bed.  However, since I’m at my in-laws house, I know I get to sleep in.  I’ve been extremely blessed with loving in-laws who are also amazing grandparents.  They have a rule, which is one I affirm wholeheartedly, “Parents get to sleep in while they take care of the grandkids.” I am thankful.

And I know it’s Thanksgiving, to which we are to be grateful for all the many blessings we’ve been given; however, life happens at the most inopportune times and you’re not always handed something to be thankful about.  I received some news which is discouraging and causes me to think with a fatalistic fear.  I’m not gifted with optimism the majority of the time.  And although I would say my glass is half full, this doesn’t equate with walking around thinking I can tackle anything and keep truckin’.

I’m at first glance an optimist fatalist, because I’m an extrovert who is over dramatic.  I see the best in the outcome, but I get caught up in the path to get there at times.  Ultimately, I need to remember that I am not savior and rely on one who is.  Life is hard enough without having a savior complex.  What…with being a mom, a wife, a friend, a daughter, a sister, etc., is enough in and of itself.  I’m only required to live in this moment and do what I’m called to do.  My job is not to be the perfect mom.  Or to cook the perfect meals. Or to carry others burdens/issues.  I don’t have to live up to expectations that others have set for me or even ones I’ve set for myself.

And in a world where we compare everything and everyone, it can be pretty damn hard.  Where our children are compared to one another from day one based on their weight & length.  Where mothers ask other mothers what “percentile” their child falls (maybe to feel good that their child is a bit bigger and doing “better”).  Where smart is based on knowing your ABC’s, speaking in fluent tongue, or excelling in ‘quantifiable’ means.  Where beauty is measured based on waist size & symmetrically aligned faces.

Yet, in the midst of all the reasons aforementioned (and then some), I can take solace in what the prophet Zephaniah spoke to Israel many, many moons ago:

Sing, O Daughter of Zion;
shout aloud, O Israel!
Be glad and rejoice with all your heart,
O Daughter of Jerusalem!
The LORD has taken away your punishment,
he has turned back your enemy.
The LORD, the King of Israel, is with you;
never again will you fear any harm.
On that day they will say to Jerusalem,
“Do not fear, O Zion;
do not let your hands hang limp.
The LORD your God is with you,
he is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing.”

I like knowing that I am to “shout…rejoice with all my heart,” because He “delights” in me, he “quiets” my whole being with “his love,” and he “rejoices over me with singing.”  It gives me a picture of my daughter happily singing (in and out of tune) with complete abandon through the living room.  It brings me joy & I fully delight, or enjoy her…for her.  And when she’s upset, or hurt, or even quietly in my lap…I get to shower my songs upon her.  And oh my, it brings her peace in the midst of a storm feeling.  Thankfulness…it’s knowing that type of peace in eye of the storm, and choosing to see the good in the midst of it.  So for that…I am thankful for this day the Lord has made.

If you’re wanting to add some tangible thankfulness to your day (or someone else), then this galette is definitely high on the list. Happy Thanksgiving!

Butternut Squash Galette & Delicata Squash Galette (printable recipe)

This pastry crust is courtesy of Epicurious.  I needed to make two Galettes, so I doubled the pastry ingredients below.  I also used 3/4 butternut squash for one galette and 1/4 for the other galette.  The crust was flaky, savory & sublime. I love these for their versatility and improvisation.

For pastry:

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon chopped sage leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons ice-cold water
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

For butternut squash filling:

  • 1 (2-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 2- by 1/4-inch slices (4 cups) **reserve about 1/4 of it for other galette if making it.
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium sized shallot
  • 4 ounces soft mild goat cheese
  • 4 ounces soft cream cheese
  • 1 egg

Make dough:
Pulse flour, butter, sage, and sea salt in a food processor until mixture resembles coarse meal. Drizzle ice water evenly over mixture and pulse until it just forms a ball. (Do not overwork dough, or pastry will be tough.) Gently press dough into a 5-inch disk and chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 1 hour.

Make filling while dough chills:
Preheat oven to 500°F with rack in middle.

Toss squash with sea salt and 1 Tbsp oil and arrange in 1 layer in a 17-by 12-inch shallow baking pan. Roast, stirring once halfway through roasting, until golden brown on edges and undersides, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove squash from oven and reduce oven temperature to 375°F.

Meanwhile, saute shallots in 1 tablespoons oil with a pinch of sea salt in a 10-inch heavy skillet over medium heat, until tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl to cool slightly. Combine goat cheese, cream cheese & egg in a small bowl.  Mix to combine.

Make galette:
Roll out dough into a 13-inch round on a lightly floured surface with a lightly floured rolling pin. Transfer to a baking sheet. Spread out cheese filling in center of dough.  Dump about 3/4 of butternut squash on top, along with shallots, leaving a 2- to 3-inch border. Fold dough in on itself to cover outer rim of filling, pleating dough as necessary. Put a few sage leaves on top, drizzle with olive oil & sprinkle with sea salt.  Brush pastry with beaten egg and bake galette until crust is cooked through and golden on edges, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool on baking sheet on a rack 10 minutes before serving.

Delicata-Butternut Squash with Kale Galette: there’s no need to peel the delicata, because it’s skin is tender upon roasting and is easily eaten.

  • 1 delicata squash
  • olive oil for drizzling delicata
  • sea salt for sprinkling delicata
  • 1/4 of above cooked butternut squash
  • 1 medium shallot (I cooked 2 shallots and divided them between the two recipes)
  • 3 kale leaves, vein removed & chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 5 ounces goat cheese

Cut ends off of delicata.  Scoop out seeds & pulp.  Cut into 1/4 inch rings, then cut into half moons.  Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment.  Drizzle with olive oil & sprinkle with sea salt.  Roast at 450 for roughly 15 minutes.  They don’t take that long.  Cool.

Meanwhile, saute kale in 1 tablespoon of olive oil till tender.  You may need to add more oil or even some water.  Remove to a small bowl and set aside. Saute chopped up half moon shallots in 2 teaspoons olive oil for 1 minute or so.  Remove to small bowl.

Combine the delicata squash, 1/4 leftover of cooked butternut squash, cooked shallot, & kale together.  Roll out your dough following instructions above, drop goat cheese throughout the center of the rolled out galette.  Arrange the vegetables on top of the goat cheese lined crust.  Fold dough in on itself to cover outer rim of filling, pleating dough as necessary. Brush pastry with beaten egg and bake galette until crust is cooked through and golden on edges, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool on baking sheet on a rack 10 minutes before serving.