Posts Tagged ‘vegetable’

Before Pumpkins Disappear This Year … Soup!

Usually when people are sick, Americans think, have some chicken noodle soup, stay in bed, and drink tea. Well, what do you give a vegetarian as a get-well food?  Normally, I’ll go for any soup – creamy tomato & basil is the easiest to make – but this time, I decided I wanted something a little different.  (If you’re still aching for Creamy Tomato Soup, try this recipe from The Food Network. Don’t forget to substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth.)

Here’s magic:

pumpkin soup Image Source.

Pumpkin [Noodle] Soup (Approx. 4 Servings)

  • 1 lb. peeled pumpkin
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cups milk
  • Grated nutmeg, a pinch
  • 1.5 ounces of spaghetti broken into small pieces
  • 6 tablespoons Freshly Grated Parmesan
  • Salt & Pepper, freshly ground, to taste
  1. Chop the pumpkin into 1-inch cubes.
  2. Heat the butter in a saucepan.  Add the onion and cook on medium heat until it softens. ~7 minutes.
  3. Stir in the pumpkin pieces and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add the water and cook until the pumpkin is soft. ~15 minutes. Then, remove from heat.
  5. Process the soup in a blender, then return to pan.
  6. Stir in milk and nutmeg, season with salt & pepper.  Bring soup back to boil.
  7. Stir in the broken spaghetti and cook till pasta is done. Stir in the Parmesan and sprinkle again with nutmeg.
  8. Serve while hot!
  • I was recently taught how to make a pumpkin pie using real pumpkin (as opposed to canned purée) and phyllo dough, which completely expanded my pumpkin recipe range. Have you ever tried making pumpkin soup before?
  • Do you have any alternate versions of this recipe?
  • What’s your favorite soup when you are sick?

Nachos Nachos Nachos!

It’s a Saturday night and I’ve a bunch of homework to do (I know, I know, most college students go out on Saturday nights … I’d prefer a movie or a nice book at home. Call me granny if you want to.), and of course I’m looking for every possible method of procrastination. I might call up my friend Karen to see if she wants to go to Sunset. Where we would get beer, but more importantly, nachos. Now, nachos could really mean any manner of things, but the nachos I’d get here are a vast improvement from the nachos I used to eat at Target when I was 6 years old.

Case in point:

1. Nachos at Target – Tasteless tortilla chips doused with heated queso. I’d get jalapeños on these nachos just because otherwise those nachos were boring…

2. South of the Border Fiesta Nachos at Sunset Grill & Tap / Sunset Cantina – Here’s the description, straight from the menu: Hot nachos topped with choice of chili (Vegetarian, Taco Beef Black Beans) , jalapenos, scallions, tomatoes, black olives, jack and cheddar cheeses, shredded lettuce, guacamole, sour cream and salsa.  You can get the guac, sour cream, and salsa on the side, and you can substitute BBQ pulled pork, or add in BBQ/Cajun/Buffalo chicken. Or something. Choose a meat if you don’t want vegetarian chili, basically. But if you’re reading this blog, you’re probably looking to keep the veggie.

While rooting around the interwebs, I found a blog titled El Tour Del Nacho, written by several students in Boston who made it their mission to try and rank nachos all around Boston.  While I’m appalled that they’d rank it as such – they give Sunset the Bronze Medal for most delicious Nachos. They hold fast to The Pour House as the Gold Medal Champion. However, they give you a comprehensive analysis on the nachos. If this seems excessive, you must be new to the area. Or not from the South.

3. Repeat mention: The OTHERSIDE Nachos – I’ve professed my love for these nachos before, on this blog, but here it is again: This plate of delicious starts with a bed of tortilla chips topped with melted cheddar, jalapeños, their homemade vegetarian chili and salsa.

If you’re at home and you’re strapped for ingredients, try this twist:

Simple Nachos

  • Shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • Scallions/Jalapeños
  • Tortilla Chips – Choose a brand that ISN’T Tostitos and you’re golden
  1. Sprinkle the cheese and scallions/jalapeños on the chips to your heart’s content.
  2. Microwave 30 seconds (or less if you’ve got a really powerful microwave. The cheese should not start bubbling.)
  3. Eat!
  • What are your thoughts?
  • Do you make nachos at home?
  • If so, what do you put on them?

Baked Vegetable Frittata

The Frittata.  When I was in Copenhagen this past summer, my friend Jason introduced me to this Italian vegetable and egg dish.  Since then, I’ve discovered  numerous recipes for making frittatas, realized that each calls for the vegetables to be cooked differently, the eggs to be poured in at different times, and for the dish to be baked or broiled or cooked differently.  Alton Brown of the Food Network has a carnivorous version of the frittata recipe, for those of you cooking for a mixed party.

Because it’s slightly different from the allrecipes.com Potato and Vegetable Frittata Recipe, I’m providing Jason’s frittata recipe, which in all honesty, knowing Jason, he probably improvised the majority of it.

Potato and Vegetable Frittata

  • Large Pyrex-style oven safe glassware
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup onion, sliced in rings
  • 1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1 zucchini, sliced in thin circles
  • 2 cups potatoes, sliced in thin circles
  • 1 cup fresh tomato, sliced in rings
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream, 1/4 cup whole milk
  • Salt and pepper , roughly ground from peppermill
  • Dried oregano
  • 1 pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Preheat your oven; set it to broil.
  2. On a frying pan, heat oil and saute the onions and garlic over a low heat until the onions begin turning clear and the garlic begins turning golden. Remove from the heat.
  3. Beat the eggs with the salt, pepper, oregano, and cayenne in a separate bowl.  Mix in milk and heavy cream.
  4. Arrange the vegetables in the Pyrex (ours was an oval shaped dish). Cover the bottom of the dish with one layer of potato circles, arranged in a spiral of overlapping potato slices. Next, layer the zucchini and tomatoes,  then pour the bell peppers over the tomatoes.  Take the onions and garlic off the pan and top off the vegetable stack.
  5. Pour the egg/milk mixture over the vegetables, leaving a 1/2 inch or an 1 inch between the top of your vegetables/eggs and the top of the dish.
  6. Sprinkle the mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses over the mixture.
  7. Place dish in the oven and let bake/broil for about 45 minutes.  I think it took an hour for our eggs to set completely in the middle, but it really depends on your oven.  Check the dish at 30 minutes, because it could be fully cooked.
  8. When the eggs are firm and have started to brown around the edges, remove from oven and check center of dish to see if it is fully cooked.
  9. Cut into wedges and serve with hot sauce.

Enjoy!

  • What about you? Have you ever made a frittata?
  • Did you roast the vegetables beforehand?
  • What side dishes do you usually serve with frittatas?

Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup

Once again, I have a craving for soup, but this time I want something different.  (I also may have made broccoli for dinner two nights ago, eaten cheese as my mid-afternoon snack and have bored myself of these two ingredients. Shhhh…)  Courtesy of my friend Christina,  I present to you an excellent recipe for Butternut Squash Soup (For all you BU students reading this, Copper Kettle in the George Sherman Union makes a delicious vegetarian butternut squash soup.)

S0, for dinner this Saturday night, this soup is what I’m making:

Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup from Gina’s Weight Watcher Recipes

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp roasted cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp madras curry powder
  • 1/2 medium onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 16 oz (about 2 cups) chopped peeled butternut squash
  • 1 cup light coconut milk
  • 3 cups fat free vegetable
  • salt and fresh pepper to taste (1/4 tsp salt + pepper)
  • chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Directions:

Add oil to a medium soup pot, on medium heat. When oil is hot add onion, garlic and sauté. Add roasted cumin, masala and madras curry powder and mix well cooking another minute. Add broth, light coconut milk, butternut squash and cook covered until squash is soft, 12-15 minutes. Remove cover and using an immersion blender, puree soup until smooth (or puree in a blender). Season with salt and fresh pepper and serve with fresh cilantro. Serves 3.

As promised, those ingredients with the funny names (i.e. the Indian spices are all available at Shaws/Star Market – look in the Indian food section if you don’t see them in the spice aisle.  If you’re still having trouble finding them, go over to Allston Market at the intersection of Commonwealth Avenue and Harvard St. across the street from Wonderbar – they have everything there.)

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