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Update!

It’s been a long time since I update this!  Things have been hectic.  I finished up my Masters in Nutrition Education.  Got placed at a Dietetic Internship for this fall.  Been working lots of hours teaching kids about nutrition.  Doing some yoga and finding time to go running.  Now that its summer here in New Jersey and there are plenty of farmer’s markets and tons of fresh local fruits and vegetables, I hope to be updating and coming up with lots of new recipes!  Stay tuned!

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Triple Squash Soup

music: “airplanes” by Local Natives

Hopefully everyone had a wonderful holiday!  It is snowing here in the northeast, so it’s the perfect weather for soup!  A few weeks ago, I had this delicious triple squash soup for lunch at Whole Foods.  Knowing I would have to recreate it for myself, I snapped a quick picture of the ingredients before leaving.

But before getting to the soup, first…I have to show off a brand new tool.

I have always wanted a spout for olive oil.  I think it will really be helpful in getting the hang of the drizzle of olive oil, rather than having to measure it out.  I really envy all those home cooks who can do it all by eye.

By the way, I love espresso, especially freshly roasted beans straight from the coffee roasters themselves.  You can see the remains of the beans I brought home from my last trip to California.

Flavoring agents

Heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium-high heat in a large stock pot.  Then add two chopped carrots, two chopped celery stalks, one chopped onion, and salt and pepper.  Saute for about 5 minutes.

Once this has cooked down a bit, add in one chopped acorn squash, one chopped butternut squash, and one small, chopped pumpkin.  Saute this for about 10 minutes.

Next add 1 teaspoon of ginger, 2 tablespoons of maple syrup, and one tablespoon of brown rice syrup.  Let this cook down for about five minutes.

Then add enough water to almost cover the vegetables.

Turn the heat down to medium and let this cook partially covered until the squash are very soft.  This will take about 20-30 minutes.

Once the squash are very soft, puree the soup using an immersion blender (or in batches using a regular blender)

Next add chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper.

Triple Squash Soup

Drizzle of olive oil

2 Carrots, chopped

2 Celery Stalks, chopped

1 medium Onion, chopped

Salt and Pepper

1 acorn squash, seeded and chopped

1 butternut squash, seeded and chopped

1 small pumpkin, seeded chopped

1 teaspoon ginger

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1 tablespoon brown rice syrup

(*note: brown rice syrup is used to add sweetness; if you don’t have it you can simply omit it, or substitute another sweetening agent like agave syrup or brown sugar)

water

1/4 cup parsley

 

Heat drizzle of olive oil in large stock pot over medium-high heat.  Add carrots, celery, and onion.  Saute for about five minutes, or until onion is translucent.  Add squash and pumpkin and saute for about ten minutes.  Then add ginger, maple syrup, and brown rice syrup.  Saute for another five minute.  Than add enough water to almost cover the vegetables.  Lower the heat to medium and partially cover.  Let this cook for about 20-30 minutes or until the squash is very soft.  Next, puree the soup and add parsley along with additional salt and pepper to taste.

Applesauce Made Easy

music: “Boy” by Ra Ra Ra Riot


Things have been so hectic for me lately.  With the end of the semester looming and then Thanksgiving, I haven’t been able to really do anything I wanted.  In fact, I am at school right now preparing for a presentation I have to give on Whole Foods later tonight.  So I thought, a quick simple recipe, which is relatively quick and simple, but produces something ridiculously tasty!


4 pounds apples, peeled and cored
4 strips of lemon peel
1-2 cinnamon sticks
1 cup water

Core and quarter your apples


Put all of the ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil

Once boiling, reduce it to a simmer and cover the pot.

Cook for approximately 30 minutes, or until apples are quite soft.

Using a pair of tongs remove apple skins, lemon peels, and cinnamon sticks

Let cool slightly then mash or puree depending on whether you like a rustic, chunky applesauce or a smoother applesauce

 

 


Delicious served hot or cold,with or without a sprinkle of cinnamon!

Holy Cow…

music: “Furr” by Blitzen Trapper

I’m a little behind in my postings.  This is actually about a day two weeks ago, but it was so wonderful, the post is better late than never.

Two weeks ago, my mom and I went on a tour of Bellvale Farms.  It is a farm that houses a large dairy with lots and lots of cows!  It has been continually producing milk for over 150 years!

They opened their farm to the public and allowed you to go on tours of their corn fields and dairy barns.  They also had a couple of fun things going on, like a name the calf contest for the baby above.  Too bad I didn’t win, the prize was an ice cream party supplied with ice cream from their creamery, but more on that later…

We got to walk around and see many of the cows.

Inside the milking barn…

Fresh Local Milk.

I was so driven to try to get a picture of this cow at the end of the line inside the milking barn.  My determination could have been from trying to get something good out of getting pooped on.  Yes, while walking through the barn, one cow chose to relieve herself, and I was within the splatter range.

We got to walk around probably on maybe 5 acres, which all seemed so beautiful and spacious.  In actuality, the family owns 450 acres of farm land in the area!


Feed silos.

After we toured the upper farm, where the milking takes place, we took a trip down to the lower farm, where  corn is grown for additional feed for the cows.

Corn stalk stuck in the door…I thought this was amusing.

The cows are grass fed in addition to some supplementation from the corn that is grown on the farm.

This calf was born the morning that we were taking a tour of the farm.  For being less than a day old, it’s so big!

Pregnant cow, she was supposed to give birth later that day.

After we finished taking the tour of the farm, we went to enjoy some of their HOMEMADE ice cream at their creamery on top of the mountain.  So many things make this ice cream amazing, the fact that all of the dairy comes from right down the hill, that the cows live a happy life, all the additional ingredients are natural, the waffle cones are freshly made so they are always hot, the view is beautiful, and well it just tastes good!  We weren’t the only people who decided to get some ice cream…

I’ve never been to the creamery and been able to just walk right in without waiting on line, but this seemed excessive.

But…

for fresh, local ice cream…

it is definitely…

worth the wait!!

Bellvale Farms

Beans, Beans good for your heart…

music:  “Little Lion Man” by Mumford and Sons

 

One of my favorite things about summer (and early fall) is barbecues.  It’s always fun to be outside enjoying good food and good weather with friends and family.  One of my favorite BBQ dishes is baked beans!  Before finding this great recipe on Eat, Live, Run I had only had either baked beans from a can, or recipes loaded with tons of brown sugar.  This recipe had a bit of a more tomatoey base, which I love.  Also, they get better the next day!

Ingredients

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 of a large yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp pure maple syrup
1 tbsp ketchup
1 tsp ground mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 bay leaf
1 tsp hot sauce
8 oz tomato sauce
1 15 oz can cannelloni beans, drained and rinsed

Preheat oven to 350

In a cast iron skillet or non-stick skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the onions and sauté for about five minutes or until soft and translucent.

Add the garlic and sauté 30 seconds more.

Add the maple syrup, tomato sauce, salt, ground mustard, hot sauce and ketchup and simmer for five minutes.

Add the beans and bay leaf, stir, then cover the skillet with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes, stirring once during the baking process.

Allow to cool and serve warm.

Sweet Success

music: “Sweet Disposition” by The Temper Trap

 

Last Thursday when I got home from classes, there was something waiting for me…

Sure I was the one who ordered it, and I knew it was coming, but it was still exciting!  Ok, so shipping ice cream from Ohio to NJ isn’t exactly going local, especially when there are plenty of great local ice cream places around here, but after seeing this on the Food Network a few weeks ago, I really wanted to try it.

The ice cream is from this place called Jenni’s in Ohio.  Part of the reason I wanted to try it so much was because all their milk and cream is locally sourced from grass-fed Ohio cows.  They are known for their unique and interesting flavors, which is how they got highlighted on the show Best Thing I Ever Ate, for their Queen City Cayenne.

I, of course, wanted to try every flavor, but it was a little pricey, and having too much ice cream in the freezer is often a recipe for diaster.  So here are the flavors I got:

Queen City Cayenne

Salty Caramel

Black Coffee

Sweet Corn and Blackberries

 

 

After trying each flavor, my favorite was definately SALTY CARAMEL!  I also really liked the Queen City Cayanne, which is strange because normally I hate chocolate ice cream!  My whole life I’ve eaten the chocolate side of ice cream cakes first, just to get it out of the way.  Anyway, the Queen City Cayanne had a really strange, but delicious spicy kick to it.

 

Then, as I was sitting eating my bowl of Salty Caramel, watching the Food Network, naturally, Jenni’s was highlighted on the Food Network again!  Salty Caramel was ranked number 6 on the Best Desserts in America by the Food Network, which I found absolutely amazing since I was sitting there eating a bowl!

It’s a delicious form of the sweet/salty combination and I would recommend it next time you find yourself in Ohio!

Feasting on San Gennaro

Last weekend when I was in the city, I meandered into Little Italy and realized it was the feast of San Gennaro. The feast of San Gennaro is the annual celebration of the Patron Saint of Naples.

It is New York City’s longest-running, biggest and most revered religious outdoor festival in the United States.  Although its an annual celebration of faith, the Feast of San Gennaro is known the world over for its festive atmosphere.  It is an 11-day event featuring religious processions and colorful parades, free musical entertainment every day, a wide variety of ITALIAN FOOD, delicacies, charming restaurants and cafes and even a world-famous cannoli-eating competition!

Not to mention fire hydrants painted the colors of the Italian flag!

with food!  I only snapped a few pictures, but there was tons!

tons of torrone! (Italian nouget)

We stopped by Ferrara’s and picked up some lobster tails, sfogiatelle, and cannoli to enjoy for dessert later.

Yum!