Friday, December 19, 2008

Simple Feasting Recipes

If I offer you two simple recipes that would make flavourful and nourishing additions to your holiday table, featuring locally-sourced produce, would you forgive me for the lack of photographs?

Simple n' Smooth Squash Soup

I love the subtlety of the flavours in this soup - not too much spice so that the squash can shine though. And there's just enough coconut milk in there to make it creemy, but not too rich.
1 medium-large butternut squash, roasted
1 tbsp. non-hydrogenated coconut oil or olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
2 large or 4 medium cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp. freshly grated ginger root
1-2 tsp. ground cardamom
1-2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1-2 tsp. ground turmeric
1-2 tsp. sea salt
3/4 - 1 cup coconut milk (or 1 can 'lite' coconut milk)
3 1/2 - 4 1/2 cups filtered water

Scoop the soft, roasted squash flesh out of its skin and set aside (discarding the skin).
Heat the oil over medium in a large soup pot. Toss in the onions and stir, cooking for about 5 minutes, until they begin to soften. Throw in the garlic, ginger and other spices (weighting each one as your taste buds dictate - and if you want this to be a curried soup, throw in a tsp each of ground cumin and coriander, too). Stir to evenly distribute the spices and make sure nothing's sticking to the bottom of the pot (if it is though, a splash of water and/or a slight adjustment of the heat should do the trick). A few more minutes in (everything should be lovely and fragrant), add the roasted squash, salt, coconut milk and about half the water. Bust out your hand blender and move it around in that soup pot till everything is nice and smooth (if you don't have an immersion blender, you should - but until then, you can carefully portion the soup out into a blender or food processor and give it a whirl in there, then return to the pot to reheat). Mix in the rest of the water (to reach desired consistency and serve - maybe over fresh baby spinach or steamed kale, and maybe topped with lightly toasted and salted pumpkin seeds.
Makes about 8 servings.

Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts

They make these at my work (though I'm not positive the ratio's the same), and it's hard to resist ordering them every day I'm there! Even people who've always thought they didn't like Brussels sprouts (which are fantastic for your liver, by the way) should give these a try. Note: Brussels sprouts are in the "clean thirteen" meaning even if they're not organic, they're not so heavily sprayed.
25 or so Brussels sprouts (all about ping pong ball-sized)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. filtered water
1/2 tsp. sea salt (or to taste)
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Preheat the oven to 350oF.
Trim the ends and any funky bits off the Brussels sprouts and place in a baking dish that fits 'em all in one cozy layer. Drizzle evenly with the balsamic, oil and water, cover (with a lid or tin foil) and bake for 30 minutes. Remove them from the oven, sprinkle on the salt, stir to coat in the brown juices, and return to the oven uncovered for another 20 minutes or so (checking and stirring after ten minutes, adding another splash of water if they're drying out), until they are tender right the way through. Season with pepper, and serve hot.
Makes about 3-4 servings. (I ate 'em out of a little dish just as you see here for dinner tonight.)

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"Domestic affair... do you think it's a funny title?" I asked a friend.
"Funny ha-ha?" she responded, "well, no not really."
"But 'domestic affair', it's like what's going on in the nation, but it's also me, being drawn to all these domestic tasks - knitting, cooking, caring for small children..." I tried to explain.
"I like that it has the word affair in it," she concluded.

jae's first book!

Get It Ripe cover Have you seen my award-winning whole foods cookbook Get It Ripe: a fresh take on vegan living (Arsenal Pulp Press, 2008)? Keep your eyes peeled for it!
To join the Facebook group for the book, go here.


about the blog:

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While I love hearing from you, and read each and every one of your e-mails, please understand that I just cannot respond to all of them due to the rate at which they're coming in these days!

If you have a question, I might have already answered it here.

in the press

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come see me:
* Vida Vegan Con in Portland, OR, August 26-28, 2011.

...but better yet, check the calendar for details!



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