Fall Vegetable Soup

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It’s in the 50s here by the beach which means it’s time for soup! Here’s my recipe for a hearty and adaptable cold weather soup. I’ve made this with added sausage, chicken, or carne asada and it turned out beautifully. Serving at least four generous portions, this recipe is cheap and healthy!

Ingredients
1 onion
1 bell pepper
4+ garlic cloves
1 tablespoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large tomato
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup water
1-2 sweet potatoes
1 large yellow/zucchini squash
2 cups of kale, leaves torn

Method

Cut onion and bell pepper into large dice and sauté in large pot with a small amount of olive oil over medium heat until softened. Add garlic and diced tomato, and stir in cumin and salt. When fragrant, add stock and water. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Throw in chunks of sweet potato and squash. Cover for 10 minutes or so until sweet potato is soft. Stir in handfuls of kale and cover for a couple minutes until wilted.

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Black Bean Chili with Corn and Squash

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This week I’ve been struggling with the flu. This is what has actually made me feel better:
Thai noodle soup
Oatmeal
Safeway pre made soups
Homemade chili

Lawdy it’s a miracle! Hallelujah!

The recipe is suuuper simple and most of the ingredients are really cheap. Plus almost anything can easily be substituted for what you have on hand or you can add things to suit your taste. It’ll also cure the flu!*

*Has not been FDA tested to cure flu virus.

Ingredients:

2 corn cobs
Half onion
3 large garlic cloves
2 tbs olive oil
1 1/2 cups squash
2 teaspoons seasoning salt
1 teaspoon creole seasoning (optional)
Can fire roasted chopped tomatoes
4 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup salsa
1 cup shrimp (or chicken)

First get a sharp knife and cut down the sides of the cob, getting as much of the kernels off as possible. Put them in a bowl and rinse with cold water a few times, just to remove some of the starch. Side note, I know this sounds weird but I sucked on the corn cob after I did this and it was extremely delicious. If that freaked you out then just pretend I never did it.

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Next chop your onion and garlic. Get a big stock pot and drizzle 2 tablespoons of oil in it. Over medium heat sauté onion and garlic until fragrant. Add corn. Chop your squash into small/medium pieces and stir them around until softened. Add seasonings and stir. Pour in tomatoes and bring to a boil. Add black beans and salsa and boil covered on medium heat for 10 minutes. Stir chili and add shrimp.
Simmer on low heat until you are ready to eat! I simmered mine for about half hour.

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The first thing Hiram said when he walked in was “Something smells really good!”
Oh… It did. It really did.

Now I added pepper jack cheese to mine, along with some crushed up saltines. Also we had enough to fill up our bellies to the brim at dinner as well as overstuff at lunch today. And it’s actually better the next day!

Blueberry Cherry Banana Muffins

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Do you love banana bread? Do you want to a treat that’s actually good for you?
If you answered no to either of these question, consult your physician. You are probably just an alien.
If you answered yes, congrats on your confirmed human status.

Now let’s bake love.

My idea of a normal weekend is going to Costco and buying enough fruit to feed a family of 8 for at least a week. This is not an unusual scene here:

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Now let’s get my copious amounts of fruit dwindled down to a simply obscene amount.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup white flour
1/2 cup wheat flour
1/4 cup brown sugar (I subbed half for Stevia to save calories)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 mashed up bananas
1 egg
Dash of vanilla extract
Zest of one lemon
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup quartered cherries

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Mix the first 6 dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a separate bowl mix up the bananas, egg, lemon zest and juice, and vanilla. Add wet ingredients to flour mixture. Don’t overmix! Now fold in your pitted chopped up cherries and blueberries. Check out how purdy it is.

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Now evenly spoon the mixture into greased or lined muffin tray.
Again, beauty.

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Bake for 11-15 minutes. Whoa that smell will make you drool your face off.
Like in Face Off.

Cool on baking rack. I like to gingerly remove from the baking tray with a fork and a clean hand. I usually burn my hand a little. Wouldn’t recommend it.

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To up the yum status, I mixed the remaining juice from the lemon with about half cup of powdered sugar and swirled each muffin in the glaze. This is optional but adds sticky goodness.

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    Voila!

Perfect muffins.

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Morning Glory Muffins

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I have made a ton of muffins in my day. This melange of ingredients surprisingly makes the most incredible muffin I’ve ever had. It’s also really healthy! I like to use applesauce to replace oil but in most applications it can produce a quite rubbery or mushy result. These are like carrot cake… But you can eat them for breakfast. Seriously, I had 2. Plus 1. Remove dates and add cream cheese frosting for a much lighter cupcake. Or throw in whatever you have on hand to make it your own!

Enjoy.

Ingredients:
1 c white flour and 1 c whole wheat flour
3/4 c sugar (I replace half with stevia)
1 ts baking powder
1 ts baking soda
1/2 ts salt
1 ts cinnamon
1 1/4 c grated carrot
2 eggs
3/4 c applesauce
2 tbs oil
1 ts blackstrap molasses (optional)
1 ts vanilla
1/3 c shredded coconut
1/4 c pitted chopped dates (or raisins)

The first thing you need to do is shred your carrots. I just used a long cheese grater and 2 large carrots. Ice Cube would tell you to go ahead and put your back into it.
Mix your first six ingredients in a large bowl. I like to add in a little pumpkin pie spice too. Set aside. Grab another medium bowl and mix eggs, applesauce, oil and molasses, then stir in shredded carrots and vanilla. I just like the molasses because it adds a kinda brown sugar flavor. Blackstrap molasses is full vitriol for you whatnots as well. Add this mixture to large bowl with dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Add in your dates and coconut.

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You can either use paper muffin liners or nonstick spray. I did both. I sprinkled a little coconut on some of them and it was delicious.

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Cook at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Endure the tummy grumbles from severe anticipation. There’s somethin’ special about baking with cinnamon…
The baking time also gives you an opportunity to play with your fridge magnets.

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Beep! They’re all done. Cool on baking racks or do like I did and burn the hell outta our mouth because 20 minutes is long enough.

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