You know what’s great about buying organic produce? The ability to save the seeds and know that they are going to grow. Especially when buying varieties that might not be commonly grown in your area and the seed is not as available. Recently I picked up an organic Red Kuri Squash at our local Whole Foods. In France, Red Kuri Squash is is called potimarron – poti for pumpkin (potiron) and Marron for chestnut. When cooked, Red Kuri Squash tastes like a pleasant combination of the two. What’s especially neat about the Red Kuri Squash is that the skin is edible. No having to roast the squash first then spoon out it’s inner from it’s shell, no having to meticulously peel thick skin (I’m talking to you, butternut squash) with [... To read more, click here ...]
So it’s been my plan for the last few months to make roasted vegetable stock this spring to fill up our pantries for Lent and meatless Friday meals. One of my favorite books for simple, Lenten meals, Twelve Months of Monastery Soups, uses vegetable stock often for added flavor and now that I know how to can stock, I thought, why not?
Until I opened my pantry and saw row after row and jar after jar of turkey and poultry stock, produced over the last few months, just looking at me. Pregnancy fatigue was getting me down and it just seemed like too much to have to consider making and storing more stock, sanitizing jars, buying another box of lids, and hauling out the canner from the basement. Don’t get me wrong, for meat-based stocks, the canning process is fantastic, my new favorite thing, and I use it all the time. But for vegetables? Sigh, I was getting tired just thinking about it.
And then I remembered those lovely little jars of bouillon I used to buy and keep stocked in my fridge before I realized they were all full of MSG. It was so simple to just heat up some water in our electric kettle, add a spoonful or two of bouillon and voila! Instant soup, or flavor to any dish, from jambalaya to minestrone to risotto.
So I decided to make some. Bouillon that is. One extra ingredient on the list, five minutes of chopping and two minutes of processing and I was done. With a full quart of bouillon in my fridge, just waiting for our next meatless meal. . .
Lent starts this week and we are on the lookout for great vegetarian meals to round out our Friday meals. I’ve been on a bit of a Thai kick lately and recently made this pumpkin and coconut soup (pictured to the left – picture is from the cookbook as it is much prettier than my picture was!) to GREAT reviews and I look forward to making the omelette soup, below, from the same cookbook in the weeks to come. Thai is such a nice, refreshing way to eat meat-less that you don’t feel like you’re missing out too much, plus both soups are quick and easy to make with little preparation (other than shopping for the ingredients!) Enjoy! Pumpkin and Coconut Soup from Thai: The Essence of Asian Cooking serves [... To read more, click here ...]
Imagine you’re sitting in front of a crackling fire. Suddenly, you smell something delicious coming from the kitchen. Creamy, a little smoky, A perfect meal for a wintry night, lightly melty over a forkful of sourdough french bread. This is not your typical, “traditional” fondue. First, I add the smokiness of my caramelized onion marmalade which I make in a big batch in advance in the crockpot and store in the fridge. Second, it includes cream cheese, which isn’t in a standard traditional fondue, but is a fixture in my fridge, plus I often use cheddar if I don’t have gruyere. And you know what? This cheese fondue is amazing. Creamy, smoky, delicious. I’m thinking I’m going to start using it in place of my standard roux-based cheese sauce [... To read more, click here ...]