Tag Archives: winter

Butternut Squash Soup with Lemongrass, Ginger, Chilis and Coconut Milk

I know what you are thinking. “Not another butternut squash soup recipe.”  Yes, another butternut squash soup recipe.  Soup seems to be a popular thing to make with butternut squash.  It seems like everybody is making it these days. It is a classic warming winter soup  for good reason. It is absolutely delicious.  I know that I posted a butternut squash soup recipe before Christmas, but I felt that this one was different enough to share.  The last one was roasted butternut squash and parsnip.

The main similarity between the two recipes, other than the fact that they both have butternut squash in them, is that I roasted the butternut squash for both of them.  I love the added depth of flavour that roasting brings to the soup.

The spices used in this soup are similar to those used in some thai curries.  Lemongrass, ginger, red chili peppers, even cumin and of course coconut milk.  This makes for an incredibly flavourful soup.  The roasted squash brings a  sweetness which is balanced with the fire from the chili peppers.  Then, add the kick of lemongrass and ginger.  Oh baby! With the amazing taste of coconut milk to pull it all together. Continue reading

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Roasted Butternut Squash and Parsnip Soup

Snow. Christmas time. Cold weather. Winter. It is all upon us. Whether you interpret those as good things is up to you. What all those things can also mean is delicious, hearty, comfort food, good for warming you up from the inside. That means soup. Heart warming, tasty, comforting, nourishing. Nothing like a big bowl of hot soup to warm the soul, and put a smile on your face in the winter.

Butternut squash soup is a classic. Simple and delicious. In this version, I added parsnips and allspice for a little different flavour palette. I quite like how it turned out. Incorporating butternut squash and parsnips together is a great way to continue cooking with local foods in the winter. The summer and fall months which bring tons of fresh produce are behind us for this year, but there are some local foods still available. Continue reading

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Root Vegetable & Mushroom Risotto Recipe

There are many different mushroom risotto recipes, but not many like this.  This isn’t technically risotto.  Risotto is rice cooked  slowly in broth, and usually has parmesan cheese.  This recipe has no rice or parmesan cheese.   Then why call it risotto?  Instead of rice  and cheese I used root vegetables and nutritional yeast, but applied the same process as risotto.  This means starting with onions, the vegetables, then adding some alcohol, letting it cook off, and then adding a little bit of broth at a time until the vegetables are cooked.  I know some of you may be skeptical, but trust me this is a delicious dish.  Vegetarians can eat this as a main or side, and if you eat meat or fish this makes a great side dish.

This dish has many different flavours thanks to the different vegetables.  Just like risotto it is salty as well as creamy.  The mushrooms add another level to the already deep flavour palate presented here.   This dish may sound complicated to make for some, but I promise it is straightforward and simple.  Go ahead and try something different. Root vegetable and mushroom risotto. Continue reading

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Hearty Lentil and Kale Soup Recipe

Although the forecast says a high of 16 degrees tomorrow we all know what is coming.  Don’t worry it will be below freezing by Wednesday.  Soup season is officially upon us.  There is no snow on the ground, but it’s cold enough that our bodies are craving those warming foods.  A lot of comfort food can be quite unhealthy.  The good news is it doesn’t have to be.  Good hearty soups like this lentil soup are very comforting as well healthy.

This soup is incredibly easy to make, it is filling and inexpensive.  Green lentils, potatoes, tomatoes, kale, carrots, celery flavoured with fresh thyme and cumin.

Nutritious and delicious. Simple yet satisfying.  Anyone can put this soup together, even those of you who claim not to cook.  The problem is if you are reading this,  you are more than likely someone who does cook.  So share this recipe with someone you know who doesn’t like to cook but wants to make a delicious hearty soup to keep them warm this winter.

Hearty Lentil and Kale Soup

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2 cups green lentils (or black beluga), picked through and rinsed
6 cups of water

3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 large carrots, diced
2 celery ribs, diced
3-4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
a few sprigs of fresh thyme
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
250 g potatoes, cut in small chunks
1 teaspoon of cumin seeds, lightly toasted in pan
2 cups of chopped dinosaur kale, de-stemmed (or other leafy green)
fine grain sea salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
6 cups water or vegetable broth
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In a medium saucepan, combine the lentils with 6 cups of water and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until tender, but not mushy.  Approximately 20 minutes.  Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a heavy soup pot, over medium heat, combine the oil, onion, garlic, carrots, celery, thyme sprigs,  salt and pepper.  Saute for 5 minutes until the vegetables being to soften.

Add the can of tomatoes and 2 cups of water. Cover and let simmer for 10 minutes.  Then add the potatoes. Simmer for another 10-15 minutes.

Add the lentils, and 4 more cups of water or vegetable broth. ( I used water and it was delicious)  Bring the soup back to a boil for 5 minutes before adding the chopped kale and toasted cumin seeds.  Simmer for approximately 5 minutes.  Remove from heat, and allow to cool a little. Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking.

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Vegan Hot Chocolate Recipe & Video

Hot chocolate is a comforting drink that can be a great treat on cold winter evenings.  This beverage can either be extremely processed, artificial and unhealthy, or natural and healthy. It all depends on the ingredients you use.  The choice is yours.  It is just as easy to make the healthy vegan hot chocolate, so give it a try.

Forget about those hot chocolate pre mixed packages filled with artificial flavouring, corn syrup and more.  So many ingredients. So unnecessary.  Listed below are the ingredients of Nestle’s Hot Chocolate mix found on their website .

Ingredients

SUGAR, CORN SYRUP SOLIDS, HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OIL (MAY CONTAIN COCONUT, PALM KERNEL AND/OR SOYBEAN OIL), MODIFIED MILK INGREDIENTS, COCOA, CELLULOSE GUM, SALT, DIPOTASSIUM PHOSPHATE, SILICON DIOXIDE, ARTIFICIAL FLAVOUR, MONO- AND DIGLYCERIDES, GUAR GUM, SODIUM ALUMINUM SILICATE.

Hydrogenated vegetable oil?  No thank you. Not in my hot chocolate. Would you like any in yours?

Only 3 ingredients necessary for my delicious hot chocolate.  Milk of choice, raw cacao powder and a natural sweetener.

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Harissa, Kale and Chickpea Spicy Soup Recipe

Soup season is upon us. Say goodbye to summer and warm fall days.  I welcome the change with open arms and a big appetite.  As the days get colder and colder, the foods we want to eat are different.  We start to crave comfort foods to provide us with warmth throughout the late fall and winter.  We have enterered the days when it gets dark before 5 o’clock in the afternoon,  and we need warm hats, scarfs, boots etc.  This also means soups, stews, chili, and other comfort  foods we eat less of  in the summer.  Dishes made with root vegetables, grains, legumes.  Simple food to warm the body and soothe the soul.

Although we can get pretty much any fruit or vegetable all year round, it is nice to try and focus on the local vegetables that are around in the winter.   There is still a lot of local produce at the market right now; a plethora of different squashes, potatoes, carrots, beets, parsnips, celery roots, jerusalem artichokes, leeks, turnips, apples.  Some of these local foods are available all year round thanks to their incredible ability to last a long time if stored properly. Continue reading

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Roasted Sweet Potato, Carrot & Celery Root Soup Recipe

This soup is guaranteed to be a hit. It is incredibly easy to make and so good.  Roasting the veggies ahead of time really gives this soup a wonderful sweetness that you wouldn’t get otherwise.

There are very few ingredients in this recipe which really allows the flavour of the 3 main ingredients to shine through in all their roasted glory.

The soup came about because I had a sweet potato and celery root that needed to be used up.  Soups are a great way to use up produce in your fridge.  You never know what great creations will come about.

Some end up better than others.  This is one of those better ones that is definitely a keeper.

Give it a try and see for yourself.

Roasted Sweet Potato, Carrot & Celery Root Soup

1 medium sweet potato, cut in chunks
1 medium celery root (celeriac), approximately 200g after being trimmed, trimmed and chopped
2 cups chopped carrots, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
a few sprigs fresh thyme
5-6 cups vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil

Preheat oven to 450F.

Place the sweet potato, carrots, and celery root in a roasting pan and drizzle with olive oil.

Roast for approximately 45 minutes stirring a few times.  The veggies should have a nice golden colour to them.

In a stock pot, combine onions and garlic with a little bit of olive oil and sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes until the onions become soft and translucent.  Season with some salt and pepper.

Add the roasted veggies to the pot with the thyme leaves removed from their stems.  Mix everything around  and allow to cook for a few minutes like this.

Add 5 cups of vegetable broth to the pot, cover, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer for 25-30 minutes.

Remove from heat and  allow to cool for 15 minutes before you puree with a hand blender or an upright blender.

Add a little bit more vegetable broth if the soup is too thick for your liking.

Taste and season with salt and pepper if necessary.

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Celery Root, Leek, & Potato Soup

Celery root is one gnarly looking vegetable. Looks weird and intimidating.  However living in Quebec it is a local vegetable we can buy all winter. A great reason to get to know celery root a little better.

It is great in soups, mashed, or even salads.  As we live through the last few cold days here in Montreal, I decided to make one last soup to warm me up. Like most soups this is so easy to make. Continue reading

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Sage & Garlic Roasted Butternut Squash, Kale & White Bean Soup

Sticky sweet caramelized goodness. Are you salivating yet? If not, then the smell of the butternut squash roasting in the oven with sage and garlic most defnitely will get you to.  

If you have friends over they will be begging you to let them eat it straight out of the oven.  It smells and tastes that good.  There is a risk that the squash never makes it into this soup. Stay strong. The result is worth it.

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Tempeh Pepper & Kale Jambalaya

Jambalaya! I know you love saying that word. This is not your traditional Jambalaya.  Jambayala is a Louisana Creole rice dish that typically includes meat and seafood cooked with vegetables and spices.  I have created my own version of Jambayala using tempeh and kale.

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