Posts Tagged ‘fall’

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Pumpkin Chili

November 21, 2013

Yes, you read that  right. Chili made  with  pumpkin. I won’t lie  and tell you  this  is  a quickie  recipe. The prep is  fairly labor intensive.  I think I created a few new  cuss words  while  cutting the pumpkin. Next time I make it …and   there will be a next  time as  it was “that” good” , I will cook the pumpkin a little longer before attempting to cube it. I was  afraid it would lose it’s  shape and become  too soft, (like butternut squash can in soups and stews) but the pumpkin retained it’s shape  even  after being reheated several times. It definitely can  withstand a few more minutes in the microwave, or some roasting to make the prep easier. Once you have  everything roasted and cut, it becomes  simple. Into the crock and  done. It is also  optional to leave the peppers raw. I roasted them, which added  a little more time. Now about the taste… vegetarian wise, hands down this is  the best  chili you will ever make. Rich, earthy and filling. Vegetarian soul food. My carnivore devoured it, and  the next  day arriving home from Busch Gardens  asked for a  bowl..and wanted to  know if I had  enough so he could have it the NEXT day, as a  snack after school.  My daughter said.. “don’t  give me the big  container”, (she was  going back to school)” because I forget what I have and I hate throwing things  out.” (she lives with  7 people – I won’t  detail  the  refrigerator situation!). Two days later she texted “The chili is gone :(“. So…6 thumbs up in this family of three. I hope you  agree.

1 small pie pumpkin
1 T. olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 28 oz. can plum tomatoes, rough chop
2 cans  black beans, drained and rinsed
2 C. Pacific Vegetable Broth
2 T. brown sugar
1 T. chili powder
1 T. ground cumin
1 T. cinnamon
1 T. oregano
2 poblano peppers, roasted, chopped (or raw)
1 roasted red pepper, rough chop (I just tore the peppers by hand)
1 can corn

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Pierce the pumpkin with a sharp knife in a few spots. Microwave it at least 5 minutes and set aside to cool. Roast peppers in
400 degree oven for  20 minutes. Put in a sealed container until you can handle them and peel the skin. Rip into small pieces.

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Once cooled, Clean out the inside of the pumpkin.(Save the seeds and roast them!) cut the pumpkin in sections.
Score the sections as  shown.Carefully cut between the skin and the sectioned pieces, making cubes. Be careful!

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Measure oil in pan, add onion and saute until just clear, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and pumpkin, and continue cooking for another 15 minutes. I added just a pinch of each of the spices to infuse them into the pumpkin. I can’t tell you how good the house  smelled!

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While that is cooking, pour broth into your  crock and all the other ingredients except the corn. Add in the pumpkin and onions.

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Cook on high for 3 hours. Add corn. Continue cooking  3-4 on low, depending on your crock.Pumpkinchili8

Serve  hot with your favorite chili garnishes – grated cheddar, sour cream, green onions and black olives and a sprinkle
of red pepper flakes is what you see here.

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Since pumpkin is  seasonal, I plan on getting another, cubing and then freezing. This one is  a keeper and I want to make sure I can make it more than once  a season. I might  even  have to try growing my own! Enjoy!!

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Honeymoon Soup

December 4, 2012

Once the holiday turkey has provided the last bit of meat for a meal,it’s final hurrah is soup. Stock made with  roasted bones, like a roasted vegetable,will have a rich,more intense flavor than it’s boiled brothers. Since the majority of  the skin is gone as well,it is a very low fat stock.There  is little  to no skimming needed. Honeymoon Soup is a take off  on  the  classic  Italian wedding soup.The dense flavor of the stock holds up well to the addition of  jalapenos to a basic mirepoix, and jalapeno and turkey meatballs.

The Stock

bones from one 14 or more lb. turkey,or 2 breasts (can also be done with chicken carcass)

1 large sweet onion, rough chop

3 stalks celery,cut in at least 1” pieces

1/2 bag mini carrots

2 jalapenos,ribs and seeds mostly removed depending on heat you want

2 cans vegetable broth (or chicken)

2-3 C. water

2 C. cooked wild and brown rice (optional)

Put the broth, cold water and bones in 8 quart stock pot,making sure bones are covered.Bring to slight boil and  then simmer at least 3 hours.

Meatballs

1 lb. ground turkey

3 cloves garlic,crushed

2 slices soft bread,crust removed

1/2 C. milk

2 jalapenos,very finely chopped (seeds and ribs  removed depending on your heat  sensor!)

1 t. ground bl. pepper

Crumble the bread and cover with milk.When absorbed,combine with meat, garlic,jalapenos and pepper. Put in the fridge until the soup is  almost   done.

Strain your soup,making sure   any little pieces of  bone are gone. Put the broth back into the stock pot,or in my case I transfer it to my crock pot,which is too small for making the  stock.

Get  meat out of  fridge and make teaspoon sized mini meatballs. Brown on all sides in a frying pan. (about 15 minutes total cooking),Deglaze the pan with 1/2 C. water and put in the broth.

Melt one tablespoon butter in the same frying pan and start your mirepoix and jalapenos,. Cook only fifteen minutes,just enough to heat them through.Add them to your broth. Simmer on low about 2 hours,until vegetables are just barely soft.

I add rice individually to each serving,rather than cook in the soup. I recommend heating the rice before adding, as it will cool the soup considerably. So if you are adding the starch, now is the time to do it! Put the rice in the bottom of your bowl, and ladle your soup carefully over it.

Pour into bowls or large mugs, topped with a few slices of  raw jalapeno.. Perfect fall warmth…

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