Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Curried Squash Soup

Dear Sally,

The dust is starting to settle. My parents how now successfully married off both of their children. It was a beautiful weekend in Ottawa and David and Steph looked very happy.

I hadn't planned ahead for meals this week so this soup was actually just a random act of cooking. Jesse brings home random vegetables for me from his parent's garden . . . hence this soup.

(adapted from The New Moosewood Cookbook) 
3 cups butternut squash
2 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 cup orange juice
1 tbsp. butter
1 cup chopped onion
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. fresh ginger
1/4 tsp. dijon mustard
1/2 cup lactose free yogurt
dash cayenne pepper
fresh lemon juice

1) Preheat oven to 375 F. Split the squash lengthwise, remove seeds, and place face-down on a lightly oiled tray. Bake until soft (about 40-50 minutes). Cool, then scoop out the insides. Measure out 3 cups worth and place in a large saucepan. Add the chicken stock and orange juice and bring to a boil.

2) In a frying pan cook onion and garlic over medium heat until clear (about 5-8 minutes). Remove from heat and add to squash mixture. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot. Using a hand blender, puree soup until it is a nice smooth texture. Serve and enjoy!

I am sure that you will be busy with family this Thanksgiving weekend. Say hi to everyone for me!

Miss you lots,


Monday, October 1, 2012

Jamie Oliver's Chicken and Leek Stroganoff

Dear Jess,

What a busy last couple of weeks! Fortunately, I have today off. This means I have time to write this small little post.

I made this recipe quite a while ago. Jason wasn't a huge fan because of the mushrooms, but I truly enjoyed it. It is simple and comfortable, and you know how I feel about cooking with wine!

Chicken and Leek Stroganoff
From Jamie's Food Revolution, Page 34
(Serves 2)

3/4 cup long-grain or basmati rice (I used long-grain brown rice)
1 large leek
a big handful of crimini or oyster mushrooms (or your favourite kind)
2 chicken breast fillets
olive oil
a pat of butter
a glass of white wine
freshly ground black pepper
a bunch of fresh parsley
1 1/2 cups heavy cream (I used 5%)
1 lemon

1. Pour boiling water from the kettle into a large pan, place on a high heat and add a pinch of salt. Add your rice, bring back to a boil, then turn the heat down slightly. Cook for the length of time given in the instructions on the package. Cut both ends off the leek, quarter lengthways, slice across thinly, then wash well under running water. Slice the mushrooms. Slice the chicken breasts into little-finger-size pieces.

2. Put a large frying pan on a high heat and add a good lug of olive oil and a pat of butter. Add the leek to the pan with the white wine, a small glass of water; and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Let it bubble away for 5 minutes, covered loosely with a piece of aluminum foil. Meanwhile, finely chop the parsley, stalks and all. Remove the foil and add the chicken strips, most of the parsley, the cream, and the mushrooms. Stir, bring back to a boil, then turn the heat down to medium and simmer for 10 minutes. Drain your rice. Just before serving, cut your lemon in half and squeeze the juice of one half into the stroganoff. Season to taste.

3. Spoon some rice onto each plate and top with the stroganoff. Scatter with the rest of the chopped parsley. Serve with the other lemon half, cut into wedges.

I love you and miss you! I hope your kindergartens are doing well, and you're not overwhelmed with is all. I can't wait to see you again!

So much love,