Tag Archives: butternut squash

Butternut squash and ginger soup – make it fiery!

Ginger is still a running theme or obsession of mine currently, so there you go: another ginger recipe but fiery this time and velvety, and so perfectly suited to the cold spell we are having in London at the moment… Will it snow? Will it not?!

IMG_9600Ingredients list

  • Butternut squash
  • Ginger and lemongrass stock by Maggi
  • 200 ml of hot water
  • 100ml of coconut milk
  • 5og of coconut cream
  • 50g of soya cream
  • Fresh red chilli ( to taste)
  • Coriander to sprinkle

Slice the squash in large chunks and take all seeds out but do not peel it- This last step is much easier to take after roasting! No sweat! Take the easy route for once… You can also roast it whole in the oven and chop later, as in my picture!

Roast the sliced squash with a bit of olive oil- I use Olivio at the moment.In a hot oven under grill for 20 min should do. Take the opportunity to roast other roots vegetables or pepper and aubergines at the same time – you can always use those in salads or couscous later!

Peel the butternut slices when ready and soft.

Mix them in the food processor with the stock, boiling water and all the other ingredients – but do be careful with the chilli: you want a gentle kick, not a huge explosion!

If using a Thermomix, get it to heat at the same time as you chop (100°C/speed max/5 min).

Dilute with the cream and coconut milk especially if you find it too strong or too thick: it should be served creamy though, not watery.

Serve hot with a sprinkle of coriander.

IMG_2550While you sip, feeling virtuous and engaged, there is still time to write your New Year resolutions : Why not change the world this year?! One step at a time. Be bold!!! There is much that needs doing… Ok, more soup and wholesome food might be a good start; some exercise will not kill you; but do not stop at that, go further: the future is ours! Lets be ambitious. Lets save the world this year. I mean it. Find a platform, a charity, a movement and go with it. And above all: choose your motto!

No wars, no drugs, no hunger.

It feels good already just saying it.

 

 

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Butternut squash minty hummous

Hummus can be made with much more than chickpeas! I recently even tried a very satisfying butter beans hummus but my current favourite is a minty butternut squash version.  I also like the pumpkin version from Baity’s Kitchen blog- but can’t find it right now… So here is mine.

Ingredients list:

  • One butternut squash, diced and roasted
  • Garlic, 3 cloves
  • Nepita, 1 tsp
  • Greek yogurt at 2 %, 125g
  • Tahini, 1 big tbsp
  • thyme
  • Olive oil, 1 dash
  • salt and lemon juice to taste

First cut up and then peel the butternut. Throw the cubes into a roasting dish with a dash of olive oil, some thyme and crystal salt. Toss it all around!

When the squash is cooked – which should take less than 10 min- put it into a blender with all the other ingredients and blitz to a pulp. Add the nepita and lemon juice last. Check the seasoning. Decorate with strips of fresh mint.

Eat this delicious spread on slabs of warm fresh bread!

Sourcing note: Nepita is a wonderful minty thyme I brought back in my suitcase from Corsica but you can replace it with real thyme and fresh mint if it proves too hard to find. Although, if you have never tasted it you just don’t know what you are missing and in this dish it literally sings through in fresh and incredibly minty notes!

>Butternut squash and goat cheese filo tartlets

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Alternative recipe done with red sweet pepper
 Ingredients list:
Filo sheets
Butternut squash, diced (1 cupful)
Olive oil
Ground mace 1tsp
Pepper and salt
Soft goat cheese
Rub the diced butternut with the olive oil and some sea salt flakes.
Roast for 15 min until soft, at 200°C.
Put several layers of filo brushed with little oil into a pie dish or an individual tartlets pan as here.
Chuck in some roasted squash with torn bits of cheese. Fill it up nicely.
Sprinkle with mace and black pepper.
Put under a hot grill until the cheese has melted and the filo turns a nice golden colour. Watch out for it tends to burn quickly!
Serve straight away as filo sheets tends to soften as they cool down and I love a crispy light base for this.
Nutrition notes: Filo is a great and tasty alternative to the usual pastry base for tartlets. I use it all the time for convenience and nutritional reasons. Half the  pastry and twice the taste! What’s not to like?

Butternut squash and chesnut soup with curried bacon bits

>I served it as a main dish tonight with a loaf of brown organic bread. With the rain beating down on the windows and the wind outside, it was the most perfect meal to warm up the soul after a cold and wet afternoon. I served myself a glass of Mead with it – but any sweet pudding wine would do to compliment the cinnamon and sweet chestnut undertones of the soup. Do try Mead if you can though: so british and quaint – the National trust shops usually stock it.

Ingredients:
2 shallots
Dash of rapeseed oil
1 butternut squash
1 tin of chesnuts (cooked and whole)
Cinnamon, curry powder and 2 cloves
Salt and pepper
2 maggi cubes (or chicken stock) dissolved in 1 litre of boiling water
Squirt of tomato paste
Dash of single cream
Bacon cubes (tossed in a sprinkle of curry powder)
Quickly fry the chopped shallots in some rapeseed oil in a deep casserole dish. Once soft and slightly charred, add the peeled and diced squash, the stock (about 500ml first). Season to taste with the spices, salt and pepper.
Simmer on low heat for about 30mn, then add the rest of the stock and the chesnuts. I use the tins by Clement Faugier and get them from Waitrose.
Squirt out a bit of tomato paste (in tube or tub). Simmer a little longer, then take off the stove and blitz in a blender for a few seconds: The soup should be smooth and creamy and not too liquid.
Serve hot in big bowls with the fried up bacon bits and a nice swirl of single cream.