2 medium butternut squash (4 to 5 pounds total)
6 -8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2-1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Cut off the ends of each butternut squash and discard. Peel the squash and cut in half lengthwise. Using a spoon, remove the seeds. Cut the squash into 1 1/4" to 1 1/2" cubes (large and uniform is best), and place them on a baking sheet. Add the melted butter, brown sugar, salt and pepper. Toss all of the ingredients together and spread out in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 45 minutes to 55 minutes, until the squash is tender and the glaze begins to caramelize. Turn the squash while roasting a few times with a spatula to be sure it browns evenly. Adjust seasonings if needed.
Butternut Squash Soup
1 (2 to 3 pound) butternut squash, peeled and seeded
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion, chopped
6 cups chicken stock
Nutmeg, cinnamon & ginger (any or all)
Salt and black pepper
Cut squash into 1-inch chunks. In large pot melt butter. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add squash and stock. Bring to a simmer and cook until squash is tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove squash chunks with slotted spoon and place in a blender and puree. Return blended squash to pot. Stir and season with nutmeg/ginger/cinnamon, salt, and pepper. Serve.
2 cups of arugula
4 pinches of salt
3 pinches of pepper
6 cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil or other oil
Wash arugula and cucumbers. Dry well. Chop arugula fine. Slice cucumbers and tomatoes. Add salt & pepper to olive oil and blend. Toss salad with olive oil mixture.
Fresh Basil Pesto
2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts or walnuts
3 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Combine the basil in with the pine nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor or blender. (If you are using walnuts instead of pine nuts and they are not already chopped, pulse them a few times first, before adding the basil.) Add the garlic, pulse a few times more. Slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula. Add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Carrot Ginger Soup
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 1/2 pounds carrots (6-7 large carrots), peeled and sliced thin
2 cups chopped white or yellow onion
1 teaspoon minced ginger
2 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock
2 cups water
3 large strips of zest from an orange
Melt the butter in a soup pot over medium heat and cook the onions and carrot, stirring occasionally, until the onions soften, about 5 to 8 minutes. Do not let the onions or carrots brown. Sprinkle a teaspoon of salt over the carrots and onions as they cook. Add the stock and water and the ginger and the strips of orange zest. Bring to a simmer, cover, and cook until the carrots soften, about 20 minutes. Remove the strips of orange zest and discard. Working in small batches, pour the soup into a blender and purée until completely smooth. Only fill the blender bowl a third full with the hot liquid and keep one hand pressing down on the cap of the blender to keep it from popping off. Add more salt to taste. Garnish with chopped parsley.
Worth the Wait Cabbage Soup
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
Juice of 1 lemon
2 beef bouillon cubes
4 cups water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
4 cups coarsely chopped green cabbage (approx. 1 pound)
½ pound beef shoulder or chuck (optional)
In a soup pot over medium-high heat, combine all ingredients. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Notes: For a heartier soup, you can add 1/2 pound beef shoulder or chuck, cut into chunks and browned in oil. Just cook for an extra hour or until the beef is fork-tender.
Healthy Eggplant Parmesan
1 whole egg
3 egg whites
1 tablespoon water
3 eggplant, peeled and thinly sliced
2 cups whole wheat bread crumbs
6 cups spaghetti sauce, divided
3/4 pound part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded and divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Beat together egg, egg whites, and water in a shallow bowl. Dip eggplant slices in egg, then bread crumbs. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven until fork tender, 7 to 10 minutes on each side. Spread spaghetti sauce to cover the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking dish. Place a layer of eggplant slices in the sauce. Sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Repeat with remaining ingredients, ending with cheeses. Sprinkle basil on top. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 35 minutes.
Easy Crispy Eggplant
2 small eggplants
1/2 c. fine dry bread crumbs
4 tablespoons freshly minced parsley
1/3 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. ea. celery seed, paprika (optional)
1/4 tsp. ea. garlic and onion powder
salt and pepper
3 cloves garlic, whole
3 tablespoons olive oil
Wash and slice eggplant and sprinkle generously with salt. Allow to sit out for 30 minutes. Rinse and pat dry. Set out 2 shallow dishes or trays. (We like to use aluminum foil or plastic plates for easy cleanup). Into the first tray, measure bread crumbs, parsley, celery seed, 1/2 of the cheese, paprika, garlic and onion powder (do not substitute garlic or onion salt). In the second tray, beat the 2 eggs well with a fork. Add the chopped parsley and the other half of the cheese. Heat a pan with 1/4 inch olive oil (does not need to be extra virgin for frying purposes). Add the garlic in whole pieces; as the oil toasts the garlic, mash it into the oil with the tines of a fork to flavor the oil; remove before browning. Meanwhile, dip the eggplant into the egg mixture, turn to coat both sides; dip and coat both sides in the bread crumb mixtures. Fry in hot olive oil over medium-high heat for 5-10 minutes or until golden on both sides and eggplant is tender in center. If eggplant is later to be baked in a casserole, fry only until edges are browned as cooking will be finished in the oven. Serve as is, seasoned to taste with salt and pepper, or bake in a casserole dish for 30 minutes at 375 degrees F topped with grated Parmesan, mozzarella and pasta sauce.