Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sunshine Soup

I loose all motivation late November thru mid January. It's gross outside and I could wear my PJs all day. S.A.D., also known as the winter blues, hits me with just a few days of dreary weather. Luckily I live in Florida, so they are few, with at least one day of 60 degree sunny weather between. I don't have ANY idea how I would handle living up north in the winter (or any other time, really). I guess I would eat a lot of Sunshine Soup...

For the past few months I have spent my days with Beans lounging in her play tepee, reading books and pretending that we know how to play guitar (to my credit, I have been watching a few 'how to play guitar' VHS tapes).

Yet somehow I've recently found motivation and decided to get back to this blog thing. Instead of sticking to a theme, and worrying about cohesive content, I have decided to write about whatever I want. So here goes, happy reading...

And eating! Yes, I'm adding recipes too. Kasey and Mom, this is for you. I like to cook, because I like to eat, and I try my darnedest to eat healthy whole foods (mostly so I don't feel guilty when I do hit Chick Fila or go crazy on chocolate muffins!). I'll start sharing my favorites and new concoctions gone right.

Writing recipes will be difficult for me since I don't follow them well, not even in baking. I usually look at more than one recipe for the same dish, pick what I like about each, and cross my fingers. I can tell you what I used and how I cooked it, but I can't guarantee yours will turn out the same as mine, or mine will ever taste the same two times in a row. But hey, that's my love of cooking: it's all experimentation, yummy, yummy experimentation!

Sunshine Soup

My inspiration for Sunshine Soup comes from Twig and Toadstool, it's a super sweet story. I also looked at a couple recipes online and in my new Farm Fresh Seasonal Produce Cookbook.

You'll need --
  • 1 big Butternut squash (or 2 small)
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 32 oz chicken or veggie stock (and some more)
  • 1 can coconut milk (not lite, you want the cream)
  • Olive oil
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • 1 nugget of fresh Ginger
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Rosemary
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Maple syrup

Cut and de-seed squash
Roast squash and potato around an hour
Go do something else while it cools

Dice garlic small
Get a big pot and heat a swirl of olive oil
Put in garlic and grate ginger into the pot
Stir and let cook around 2 minutes
Add stock
Peel squash and sweet potato and put it in the pot  
(I used a big gravy spoon to scoop the flesh out)
Let it heat up a bit

Use an immersion blender and blend till smooth-ish
(you could put it all in a food processor in batches then back into the pot for a smoother consistency, 
and a bigger mess)
Let it heat up some more and watch out for labyrinth swamp type bubbles (I put a lid on it)
Add seasonings and bay leaf to your liking. My grandma measures spices by covering the top of the sauce or soup once or twice. I measure the same way.
Add coconut milk. Mmmm coconut fat is Sooooo good for you. 
Add a swirl of maple syrup and blend again if you like (I personally enjoy the chunks.)
Let it sit on low until you are ready for dinner.
Yumm, yumm eat your bowl of Sunshine Soup! 
      I served mine with a salad of greens, blue cheese, pecans, pears and big ol' croutons.

      Next time, I'll try carrots and apples instead of sweet potato. Doesn't that sound good?

      Happy Eating...