Aug 132013

Coconut Curry Soup with Kale and Butternut

Meet your new best friend……Fat. 

Flavorful curry, creamy coconut milk and ultra rich coconut oil make this a satisfying soup for any time of year.  Though butternut squash from KyV Farm is not in season right now in Florida – those little buttery squashes waited patiently on the counter for weeks until I was ready to use them. If you don’t have any squashes handy or are short on time simply buy frozen, cubed butternut.

In this recipe, raw coconut oil fills in for ghee (a type of clarified butter typically in South Asian dishes) like Taylor Swift filling in for Britney Spears. It’s just so… and delicious and fun and a touch more classy. No offense Britney – I was one of your first fans but it’s a new era and I think you lost most of us with the barefoot in the gas station bathroom thing.

So long butter, hello coconut oil.

Coconut oil does have saturated fat – the same as butter – but no cholesterol. Coconut fats have what is called medium chain triglycerides  – which have been shown to actually aid in weight loss, balance blood sugar and lower cholesterol.  One study in 2009 published on PubMed showed women that consumed two tablespoons of coconut oil daily LOST abdominal fat.  

Me and Dr Lindsey Duncan

Me and Dr Lindsey Duncan

It’s time to start thinking about adding more healthy fats and cutting out sugar.

After listening to Dr Lindsey Duncan speak two Saturdays ago about the importance of fats in our diet (particularly plant based fats) I promptly went home with fat on the brain (no pun intended) and thoughts of how harmful the whole fat free era was. Snackwells anyone? I remember eating those by the package because they were fat free and “healthy”. First ingredient – sugar.

[Sugar, Enriched Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Skim Milk, Corn Syrup, Fructose, Cocoa (Processed with Alkalo), Glycerin, Egg Whites, Gelatin, Chocolate, Soy Lecithin (Emulsifier), Modified Food Starch, Baking Soda, Cornstarch, Salt, Potassium Sorbate Added to Preserve Freshness, Artificial Flavor.]

“It seems like every time I study an illness and trace a path to the first cause, I find my way back to sugar.” ~ Richard  Johnson, Nephrologist at University of Colorado, Denver.

Coconut Curry Soup

Coconut Curry Soup

The importance of fat in the diet.

According to Dr Duncan, fat is the highest source of energy in the human body – some nutritionists would say sugar/carbs – he will argue that sugar feeds cancer – but it’s fat that gives us power. Fat lubricates the joints and is the number one bio-chemical element in the brain  – the brain sits in liquid comprised of 80% fat.

The power of fat is mighty.

How much fat do we need? Most sources say 20-35% of your daily intake should be from fats. Many Americans are getting much more than that in the form of fried foods – most of those fried in animal fats, hydrogenated oils or other processed oils when what we should be thinking is unheated and unprocessed fats – some great choices are seeds, nuts, avocado & coconut oil.

What is your take on fat? Are you still scared of eating too much fat from all the programming we received during the fat free era or are you excited about eating healthy and tasty fats in moderation?

Coconut Curry Soup with Kale and Butternut

Coconut Curry Soup with Kale and Butternut

Coconut Curry Soup with Kale and Butternut

Inspired by Eating Well
Serves 6 (1/1/2 cups)
Vegan, Gluten Free
Printable Recipe
**Fresh, Organic Ingredient from KyV Farm


1 block tofu, drained, wrapped in paper towels and pressed of water
2 Tbsp curry powder, divided
3/4 tsp sea salt, divided
2 Tbsp coconut oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
15-oz butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed (about 1 large butternut or 1 1/2 pkgs frozen)**
2 carrots, sliced (about 1 cup)
1 14-oz can light or regular coconut milk
2 cups (or 1 14-oz can) vegetable broth, low sodium or sodium free**
3 cups chopped kale

1/4 cup cilantro (optional)


1. Cube tofu into bite size pieces; sprinkle with 1 tsp curry powder and 1/4 tsp sea salt; toss well to coat. Heat 1 Tbsp oil in large stock pot or Dutch oven over med-high heat.  Add tofu cook until browned; turning once or twice; about 4 minutes per side. Set aside tofu.

2. Heat 1 Tbsp oil in pot; add onion and garlic; cook until softened about 3 minutes; add squash and carrots; cook an additional 5 minutes; add remaining curry powder; stir for 30 seconds. Add coconut milk, broth and remaining salt; bring to a boil, stirring constantly, reduce heat and simmer about 12 minutes until butternut squash softens; stir in tofu and kale; cook an additional 4-5 minutes.

3. Remove from heat and stir in cilantro if using.

Nutrition Facts
6 Servings
Amount Per Serving 

Calories 217.3
Total Fat 12.3 g
Saturated Fat 8.1 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1.3 g
Monounsaturated Fat 1.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 332.7 mg
Potassium 661.7 mg
Total Carbohydrate 22.3 g
Dietary Fiber 6.5 g
Sugars 3.4 g
Protein 7.4 g

Vitamin A 371.7 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 18.3 %
Vitamin C 76.2 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 3.5 %
Calcium 50.7 %
Copper 20.9 %
Folate 13.8 %
Iron 21.3 %
Magnesium 20.9 %
Manganese 63.2 %
Niacin 9.2 %
Pantothenic Acid 5.7 %
Phosphorus 17.3 %
Riboflavin 8.4 %
Selenium 16.1 %
Thiamin 15.1 %
Zinc 8.9 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Aug 022012

Just think…warm and sweet butternut squash, bright, sunny lemon, nutty tahini, purple onion and wilted spinach….doesn’t that sound great for summer?  It’s wonderful even cold!
This butternut squash dish was one of the recipes that Cara and I chose to make while she was in town visiting.  In addition to the tahini and olive oil, we stirred in some honey, cumin and fresh baby spinach. 
Once you try that one out….here is a wonderful round two recipe for you with avocado and sprouts that enhance the taste of fresh lemon.

Juicy summer cherries are the perfect compliment!

Butternut Squash and Chickpea Quesadilla with Avocado and Fresh Sprouts
Serves 4
4 whole wheat wraps
1/2 cup Daiya cheddar cheese
1 avocado, seeded and sliced
1/4 red onion, sliced
1 cup sprouts
1. Preheat broiler to high.  Stuff 1/4 cup butternut squash salad into wheat wraps, top with 2 Tbsp Daiya.  Spray with cooking spray; broil, on high, 3 minutes per side or until browned.
2. Top with 1/4 sliced avocado, 1/4 of the sliced red onion and 1/4 cup sprouts.
**No nutrition info available for this one.
Jun 202012
Welcome back to Wine Down Wednesday where I review a vegetarian dish paired with two different wines from Broadbent Selections.
To pair wines with a meatless dish we must look at the spices and main flavors of the recipe.
In this case, mushrooms, thyme, butternut, garlic and chives.
The wines to pair are Organic Pares Balta Penedes Garnatxa Cabernet, 2009, Spain  and Dr Hermann Riesling , 2011, Mosel Germany 
Organic Pares Balta Penedes Garnatxa Cabernet, 2009, Spain and Dr Hermann Riesling , 2011, Mosel Germany
This dish was one of those created on the fly.  I had butternut, mushroom and thyme on hand and the caramelized onions are a given when I’m making any pizza.  A tomato based sauce did not sound appealing so I grabbed some fresh chives from my herb garden and made a simple pesto by blended them with garlic, salt and a bit of olive oil.
Fresh Pesto
Here is the rating info.


Category #1 – How well my dish turned out.
Category #2 – How well I like the wine (and fellow tasters).
Category #3 – Pairing notes – How well this wine pairs with the dish.

Rating Scale
Bleck -This wine is pretty bad.
Ho Hum- I could drink it if I was at a football game and there was nothing else in the cooler.
Nice -Good table wine. I would keep this in the wine cooler if it was a good value.
Yum – This is good, I would pay a fair bit more and have it for a special occasion.
Damn that’s Good – Self explanatory.
** We will use the same terminology for how the dish turned out and how well it paired.

Category #1 How well the dish turned out.

Caramelized Onion, Butternut Squash, Mushroom and Thyme Pizza
with Garlic Chive Pesto Rating of  YUM

I liked the freshness of the herbs and chives with the earthiness of the mushrooms.  The caramelized onions and butternut squash add a touch of sweetness.  It made for an interesting appetizer on Father’s Day as opposed to the usual chips n’ salsa.

Category #2 The Wines

I actually did this wine tasting on Sunday during Father’s Day; the participants inlcuded me, my Mom and Dad, my father in law Paul and my brother in law Matt.  Paul’s career takes him around the world to many of the American Embassies to review energy efficiency.  During his visits he enjoys local wineries and sampling regional wines so we dubbed him our “expert” of the tasting.

Organic Pares Balta Penedes Garnatxa Cab

Organic Pares Balta Penedes Garnatxa Cabernet, 2009, Spain
” Black cherry, flecks of earth, anise, wild herbs, graphite.   Soft tannins, sees about 7 mos of oak.”
PARES BALTA is a family owned organic winery about half an hour south of Barcelona. The winemakers are two young women, Maria Elena Jimenez and Marta Casas. Pares Balta has a National Park as part of its land holdings. Pares Balta has their own colony of bees to pollinate the vines and a flock of sheep to eat weeds in the vineyards and provide a natural compost. These vineyards have never seen chemicals.

Me rating of YUM, lovely medium body, herby, earthy, toast
Mom rating of Nice, woody, smooth, no aftertaste, dry finish
Dad rating of Nice, dry
Paul rating of YUM, reminds him of Malbec, spicy
Matt rating of Nice-YUM, dry for him – likes his wine a bit sweeter

Dr Hermann Riesling

Dr Hermann Riesling , 2011, Mosel Germany Fine concentration and intensity mark this creamy white, which offers apricot, apple compote and vanilla flavors tinged by botrytis. There’s enough acidity to keep this light and long on the finish.” This wine is fermented in steel tanks for 6 to 12 weeks and the winery is run by Dr Rudy Hermann and his so Christian. The family has been in wine making for several hundred years. Me rating of YUM, now mind you, I’m not a fan of sweet wines, but if I was, I would love this one. It is a little fizzy, cool, sweet and tasted like honey
Mom rating of YUM, smooth, could drink a lot of this
Dad rating of ho hum, not a fan of sweet wines
Paul rating of Nice, the more he drank the more he liked it. Tasted pears.
Matt rating of ho hum, likes drier wines. Reminded him of muscadine grapes

Category #3 The Pairing

Organic Pares Balta Penedes Garnatxa Cabernet, 2009, Spain Rating of Damn that’s Good
It tamed the garlic a bit and the wine became a sweeter as I started munching the pizza.

Dr Hermann Riesling , 2011, Mosel Germany Rating of YUMThe riesling enhanced the fresh herby flavor, the sweet butternut squash and earthy mushrooms.

Caramelized Onion, Butternut Squash, Mushroom and Thyme Pizza with Garlic Chive Pesto
Where to buy
All the wines will be for sale locally at the Grotto in San Marco. You can contact Mitch Woodlief, with questions and pricing and anyone outside the Greater Jacksonville area can contact E-MAIL: PHONE: US +1 415-931-1725.
Caramelized Onion, Butternut Squash, Mushroom and Thyme Pizza with Garlic Chive Pesto
Caramelized Onion, Butternut Squash, Mushroom and Thyme Pizza with Garlic Chive Pesto
Serves 8 appetizer size or 4 dinner
1 Tbsp Earth Balance or other vegan butter
2 onions, sliced thinly
1 Tbsp olive oil
10oz (283 grams) cubed butternut squash, I used frozen
5oz (141 grams) mixed mushrooms, I used frozen organic Asian blend (about 1/2 bag)
1  tsp thyme
1/2 tsp salt
Fresh ground pepper
1 pkgs whole wheat naan (2 naan bread)
Garlic Chive Pesto
1 large clove garlic, pressed
1 handful fresh chives, minced
1 Tbsp water
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/8 tsp sea salt (increase to taste)
1. Heat 1 Tbsp Earth Balance over medium high heat.  Add onions, stir and reduce heat to low; cook, stirring frequently, about 30 minutes adding water or broth it mixture begins sticking; remove onions from pan.  Add 1 Tbsp olive oil to pan, increase heat to medium high; stir in butternut squash, mushrooms, thyme, salt and pepper.  Cook about 10 minutes or until mixture is heated through and butternut begins to brown, stirring frequently.  Stir onions back in, remove pan from heat and set aside.
2. Preheat oven to 400F.  Blend pesto ingredients in Magic Bullet or mix well by hand.  Place naan on a baking sheet; top each with half pesto mixture and half butternut squash mixture.  Bake about 10 minutes or until all ingredients are heated through.
Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 370.4
Total Fat 18.9 g
Saturated Fat 3.2 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1.9 g
Monounsaturated Fat 8.4 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 891.0 mg
Potassium 412.8 mg
Total Carbohydrate 47.0 g
Dietary Fiber 4.8 g
Sugars 3.9 g
Protein 8.7 g

Vitamin A 101.9 %
Vitamin C 28.7 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Nutrition Facts
8 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 185.2
Total Fat 9.5 g
Saturated Fat 1.6 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.9 g
Monounsaturated Fat 4.2 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 445.5 mg
Potassium 206.4 mg
Total Carbohydrate 23.5 g
Dietary Fiber 2.4 g
Sugars 2.0 g
Protein 4.3 g

Vitamin A 51.0 %
Vitamin C 14.3 %
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Jan 262012
Can I just ask whose idea was it to take a perfectly good foot and decide that the heel of it needed to be four inches taller?  In fact, the toes are too wide. Let’s stuff them into a pointy shape like a gnome hat and call it fashion.

Furthermore, why is it that we continue to subject ourselves to such torture day in and day out at the office and out on the town in the name of fashion?  Well I say no more for me! 

Bring on the slouchy opaque stockings and orthopedic shoes.  I’m now all about comfort. 

Does anyone know of any hot orthopedic shoes?  Cause I like to wear them from day to night.

 And then there is the skinny jean, surely invented by some sadistic Victoria‘s Secret model as derision at all us 5’3 gals.  Nevertheless, we buy them in our current size and bring them home only to find the seamstress misread the size.  She must have mislabeled these pants that should have been a size smaller.

 Screw it we say, these darn things will be worn because the label says they are the right size, ignoring Stacy and Clinton’s admonishment that the fact it is made in our size, doesn’t mean we should wear it.  What the heck do they know anyway?

No, no, no my friends.  We prefer to cut off all circulation to our feet by stuffing ourselves into shape-wear that will enable us to actually be our correct size.  Luckily loosing feeling in our feet has a dual role.  We can’t feel the pain from the gnome-hat shoes.

Why do we put ourselves through this?!  Again I say no more

Enter the cabbage soup diet.  You’ve heard of the cabbage soup diet right?  Where you boil a bunch of cabbage and choke it down?  Well the suffering ends here.  Try my very sexy cabbage soup.

Oh yes, cabbage soup can be veeery sexy.

Sweet little bits of sweet potato, luscious butternut squash, steamy broth…I will make fitting into those skinny jeans comfortable and delicious.  Especially for 40ish calories, almost no fat and a good dose of vitamins A and C.

As for the sexy orthopedic shoes…I haven’t figured a recipe out for that yet, but I’ll let you know when I do.
Sweet Potato, Butternut and Cabbage Soup
14 1-cup servings
Vegan, Gluten Free, Dairy Free


1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small butternut squash, peeled and chopped
1 sweet potato, chopped
1/2 head cabbage, I used Nappa cabbage
1 quart vegetable broth
6 cups water
2 tsps dried thyme
1/8 to 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp Cajun seasoning (optional, taste for saltiness prior to adding)


1. Spray a Dutch oven with cooking spray and heat over medium high heat. Add onion and sauté until translucent, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Add butternut squash, sweet potato and cabbage; stir well.

2. Add remaining ingredients; bring to a boil, reduce heat and cover. Simmer for 20 minutes or until potatoes are soft

Nutrition Facts
14 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 47.3
Total Fat 0.2 g
Saturated Fat 0.0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 289.8 mg
Potassium 289.2 mg
Total Carbohydrate 10.7 g
Dietary Fiber 2.2 g
Sugars 0.8 g
Protein 1.5 g

Vitamin A 24.8 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 7.5 %
Vitamin C 32.7 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 0.4 %
Calcium 3.9 %
Copper 2.8 %
Folate 7.6 %
Iron 5.9 %
Magnesium 4.8 %
Manganese 9.4 %
Niacin 3.1 %
Pantothenic Acid 2.1 %
Phosphorus 3.5 %
Riboflavin 2.0 %
Selenium 1.0 %
Thiamin 3.6 %
Zinc 1.5 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Dec 042011
Last Thursday was my second CSA pickup and I stayed behind to discuss some workshop ideas with Vivian and Francisco for KYV farm.

As we chatted, Vivian offered me some soup. 

It was delicious.  A hearty mix of all the veggies we got from our CSA, lentils and barley.

The most surprising ingredient was radishes.  They tasted, well, not very radish-y.  More like a mild, soft potato-I couldn’t believe it!  Normally I’m not a fan so I’m so glad to have found a new way to prepare them.

I cut some fresh herbs from my garden but a mix of dried would work just as well.

My daughter and I shelled some of the pigeon peas.  This is really weird but it’s one of my favorite tasks.  I can focus on the mindless task of shelling and working on my intention of staying in the present moment, especially through the holidays.

Florida Fall Harvest Soup


1 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 small butternut squash, peeled and chopped (or 2 cups pre-prepared)
1 bunch radishes, chopped
1 handful baby carrots, chopped
2 cups yum yum peppers, chopped (or 1 red bell pepper)
Handful fresh herbs-parsley, culantro and chives
1/4 tsp Tony Chachere’s Cajun Seasoning (or salt)
1/8 tsp fresh ground pepper
1 cup shelled pigeon peas
1/3 cup lentils
1/3 cup barley
6 cups organic vegetable
1 bunch curly kale, de-stemmed and chopped


1. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in Dutch Oven ;add onions, sauté about 3 to 5 minutes or until translucent; add garlic through fresh ground pepper, cook an additional 5 minutes.

2. Add remaining ingredients except kale, bring to a boil; reduce heat, set cover askew to let steam out, and cook on low 30 minutes.  Add kale to pot and cook an additional 5 minutes.

Mar 142011
One of my favorite salads at Native Sun is a curry sweet potato pear salad with walnuts.  There is something about the sweetness of the pear and sweet potato against the spice mixture of the curry and the nutty walnuts that makes it a perfect balance.  I recreated it once for my one-year bloggiversary and it came out so well I have been dying to do it again but never got around to it.

First thing Saturday morning I poached some eggs and then started chopping my butternut squash wondering what I would do with it. There are so many amazing recipes out there recently from other bloggers I couldn’t choose one.  On a whim, I decided to create a second version of the curry pear salad and use the butternut squash as opposed to the sweet potato. The result is almost like a dessert without any sugar or artificial sweetener. If you eat it warm it’s all gooey and somewhat buttery tasting.  The walnuts are coated with the sweet agave and then lend a nutty and satisfying crunch.

That’s it. I’m adding this one to “favorites”.

Sweet Curry Roasted Butternut and Pear Salad with Walnuts
8 (1/2 cup) servings
***5 very worth-it WW Pts Plus


1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 firm Bosc pears, seeded and chopped
2 sweet onions, peeled and chopped
1 Tbsp curry powder
2 Tbsp agave
2 Tbsp oil of choice, I used virgin pecan but canola would be fine
1 tsp cider vinegar
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Dash of sea salt
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted


1. Preheat oven to 350F; prepare pan with cooking spray and add squash, pears and onions.  Bake for 1 hour, turning with spatula halfway through.  Set to broil for 5 minutes or until desired amount of browning occurs.  Remove from oven, place mixture into a large bowl and add walnuts.

2. Whisk the curry powder through sea salt in a small bowl; pour over the butternut squash mixture and toss gently.

Estimated Nutrition Facts (amounts will vary with size of vegetables)

8 (1/2 cup) Servings
**5 WW Pts Plus
Amount Per Serving

Calories 163.0
Total Fat 8.0 g
Saturated Fat 0.9 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3.4 g
Monounsaturated Fat 3.1 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 79.7 mg
Potassium 500.4 mg
Total Carbohydrate 24.1 g
Dietary Fiber 5.9 g
Sugars 0.9 g
Protein 2.7 g
Vitamin A 180.2 %
Vitamin C 38.3 %

And if you eat a cup
Nutrition Facts

4 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 326.0
Total Fat 16.0 g
Saturated Fat 1.8 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 6.8 g
Monounsaturated Fat 6.3 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 159.4 mg
Potassium 1,000.8 mg
Total Carbohydrate 48.2 g
Dietary Fiber 11.9 g
Sugars 1.7 g
Protein 5.3 g
Vitamin A 360.4 %
Vitamin C 76.6 %
Manganese 53.9 %

Feb 232011
I found Nutmeg Notebook through my weight watcher message boards. The photos of her healthy recipes are just gorgeous and occasionally she does product reviews.  The one I came across that intrigued me was for an Organic Sprouted Bean Trio from truRoots .  Per 1/3 cup there is 160 cals, .5 g fat, 11 g fiber and 11 g protein.  Is that unbelievable or what?
I was so excited I contacted the company to find out where I could purchase their product and they advised where and that they could send me a sample to see if I liked it before purchase. Of course I gave a resounding yes!
This would be the “sample” pack they sent.Sprouted Mung Beans, Sprouted Quinoa, Whole Grain Quinoa

Germinated Brown Rice, Sprouted Green Lentils

Organic Chia Seeds and Organic Haiga Rice

The first thing I thought of was a curry lentil soup because the last time I had some from Native Sun it was so amazing I haven’t been able to get it out of my head.  Every time I go back I ask if they have the soup and no far no luck.
To my complete happiness this came out just as amazing and was super easy.  It’s so creamy, flavorful and has a hint of sweetness.
Thank you to truRoots for this amazing sample pack!

Sprouted Green Lentil Coconut Curry Soup

***3 WW Pts Plus
10 to 12 servings

Organic Ingredients

1/2 Tbsp Earth Balance
1/2 Tbsp EVOO
1 onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 Tbsp minced ginger
4 cups (1 carton) vegetable broth
2 cups water
2 rounded Tbsp curry powder
10 oz frozen cubed butternut squash (or fresh will be fine too)
6 Tbsp or about 1/3 cup tomato paste
1 cup lentils, I used truRoots Organic Sprouted Green Lentils
1/4 cup golden raisins
1 14-ounce can light coconut milk
Salt, to taste
Dash of cayenne pepper, optional


1. Heat butter and olive oil in Dutch oven over medium high heat; add onion, carrot and ginger and cook until softened but not brown, about 5 minutes.

2. Pour broth and water in to vegetable mixture; stir in curry, squash and tomato paste and bring mixture to a boil.

3. Add lentils and gently boil for 5 minutes, reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes.

4. Remove from heat; stir in coconut milk and raisins.

Nutrition Facts
***3 WW Pts Plus
10 Servings
Amount Per Serving

Calories 134.9
Total Fat 2.1 g
Saturated Fat 0.8 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.7 g
Cholesterol 1.6 mg
Sodium 458.1 mg
Potassium 282.4 mg
Total Carbohydrate 23.9 g
Dietary Fiber 7.4 g
Sugars 4.9 g
Protein 6.2 g

Vitamin A 81.2 %
Vitamin B-6 5.6 %
Vitamin C 13.3 %
Vitamin E 2.9 %
Calcium 4.1 %
Copper 4.5 %
Folate 3.3 %
Iron 16.5 %
Magnesium 5.0 %
Manganese 8.9 %
Niacin 3.9 %
Pantothenic Acid 1.7 %
Phosphorus 3.2 %
Riboflavin 2.1 %
Selenium 1.3 %
Thiamin 3.2 %
Zinc 1.4 %

Sep 142010
I hope y’all aren’t sick of barley cause I’m still on the barley kick!  Now with the fall recipes coming out I am all excited and cooked up some of Eating Well’s Butternut and Barley Pilaf on Sunday to eat this week and added an extra two full cups of butternut just cause I love it.  I also added a full cup of flat leaf parsley and some cannellinis to make it a meal.  Tip:  Buy a large butternut squash and freeze the leftovers in 2 cup portions to be ready in a snap later!

Eating Well’s Butternut and Barley Pilaf Even Better!

Vegan, Gluten Free
Dawn’s Version
Ingredients2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 14 oz can reduced sodium vegetable broth
1 3/4 cups water
1 cup pearl barley
4 cups cubed peeled butternut squash, (3/4-inch cubes)
1 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tsp freshly grated lemon zest
1 Tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp minced garlic
3 cups cannellini beans
1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
Freshly ground pepper, to taste


1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until softened, 2 to 3 minutes.

2. Add broth, water, barley and squash; bring to a simmer, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the barley and squash are tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, about 45 minutes.

3. Stir in beans, parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper gently. 

Apr 012010
Happy Thursday blogger friends!  I have good news and bad news.  The good news is this butternut squash recipe.  The bad news (for me) is that my beloved camera broke again (I can’t blame Canon though due to the unfortunate incident where it bumped the side of the car). On the positive side at least there is a 60 day warranty on the work so back it goes to be fixed tomorrow.  The photo below is the last one I got before it went on the blink again.
Is everyone ready for the weekend?  What are your plans?  Mine are to hit the St. Augustine Farmers market and to head to my parent’s house for Easter.  I’m off work tomorrow to take my daughter to a follow up allergist appointment and get some errands done. 
Now, down to business.
How gorgeous does this look?  Well it tastes just as good and is perfect for spring.  It’s salty, sweet, creamy and crunchy all at the same time.   
Butternut Squash and Chickpea Salad with Tahini Dressing


3 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1 inch pieces
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
Kosher salt, to taste
1 (15 oz) can of chickpeas, drained
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro leaves (I like a lot but feel free to use less)


Juice of 1 lemon or 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp tahini
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp water
1 packet Truvia (or other sweetener of choice)
Salt and pepper


1. Preheat the oven to 425F.

2. In a large bowl mix the squash, onion, garlic, nutmeg, salt and chickpeas (I added them now as I like them a little crunchy).

3. Drizzle with olive oil and toss.

4. Bake for 20 minutes then broil on high for five minutes (this will add a lovely caramelization), remove from oven and let cool.

5. Whisk together dressing ingredients.

6. Add the squash mixture back to the large bowl and add the cilantro and dressing. Toss gently. 

7. Serve at room temperature.

Feb 202010

Butternut Squash, Collard and Quinoa Soup


1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 cups chopped baby carrots
2 yellow onion, diced
2 tsp minced garlic
6 cups vegetable stock or broth
2 bunches of collards, de-stemmed and chopped
1/3 cup quinoa
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tsp dried thyme


1. Sauté the onion until softened five to seven minutes and then lower the heat a bit and add the carrots and butternut squash and garlic.  Sauté about two more minutes and add the broth or stock and bring to a boil then reduce the heat to a simmer. 

2. Add in the collard greens and fold in until they have wilted down a bit. 

3. Add the quinoa and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the quinoa is fully cooked. 

The Story
After reading a post from one of my favorite blogs called The Foy Update on Kitchen Sink Soup I told myself I was going to use the butternut squash, fresh collards and some quiona to make a soup. It came out so well I ate every drop and it made a LOT. I even ate it cold a few servings and the sweet butternut squash was so cool, creamy and refreshing.