Category Archives: recipe

Buttercup Squash Soup

Hey guys,

So I’ve not posted here in a while but I have been busy. I was, sadly, laid off from my job a month ago, but have been using my time wisely. I’ve been heading to the gym a few days every week, working out at home, making lots of healthier meals, and possibly getting a contract that may allow me to start my own business.

I’ve done enough work with the gym and such that I’ve been able to lose 1 inch off my waist and 3/4 of an inch off my bust… it’s not much but it’s a step in the right direction.

I’ve been watching The Last 10 Pounds Bootcamp episodes too for inspiration and exercize ideas. This show is super inspirational to me and I really get the urge to exercize after watching it.

Today I was in the grocery store and I was trying to think of something to make for quick grab lunches, since I’m usually cleaning the house or gardening around lunchtime and don’t really want to stop and make anything big. I’m also very picky, I don’t really like sandwiches, and I need to be in the right mood for a salad.

Then I saw the Buttercup squash. I’ve had Butternut squash before, but not Buttercup, so I figured I’d pick it up and make a soup out of it. I found a simple recipe online and went from there. I added in some extra spices, and some red lentils, and goodness this is SO good!

It’s not vegan because of the cream cheese, but all things considered, I don’t think you’d necessarily need it. Next time I may just leave it out. I don’t have a picture yet, but I’ll add one tomorrow when I have my lunch.

Buttercup Squash Soup

-6 T onions chopped
-2 cloves garlic diced
-2 T olive oil
-6 Cups Buttercup Squash peeled and chopped
-1 1/2 Cups red lentils rinsed and sorted
-4 Cups vegetable broth
-1 tsp marjoram
-1/4 tsp seasoning salt
-1 tsp pepper
-1 T curry powder
-4 oz cream cheese

Saute onions and garlic with oil until softened. Add squash, lentils, broth and spices. Bring to boil and continue to cook 25 minutes, or until squash has softened, stirring occasionally. Place in blender, in batches, and puree with cream cheese until smooth. Place back in pot and heat through, do NOT boil.

Serves 10

I was able to figure out the nutritional info:

I need to figure out how to properly peel and cut up a squash because it took me about an hour just to do that… which could also be because I have pretty bad knives. The next time I make this I’ll probably leave out the cream cheese as stated before, and also use only 2 cups of broth and 2 cups of water to cut down on the sodium.

I ate a serving of this with a Tablespoon of sunflower seeds mixed in and it was heavenly.

I may have a new vice…

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The good and bad of experimenting

So, I’ve mentioned before that I am a very picky eater.  I like my food to taste a certain way, have certain textures, and not be parsnips!!! This means that I like the food I grew up with. Unfortunately, I can’t EAT the food I grew up with and not gain weight.

So I’ve started experimenting.

Earlier this week I made a quick oatmeal dish to last me for breakfasts by cooking up the oatmeal, throwing in some frozen berries, some maple syrup, and some chia and pumpkin seeds. It’s pretty good, but I don’t like the pumpkin seeds in there. Too much crunch when I just want to enjoy my oatmeal. So next time I’ll leave those out.

I also made a Quinoa dish, using whatever I could find in the house, terrified it would be a flop and that it was all I would have for lunches.

I cooked up the quinoa, tossed in some frozen turkey from Easter, grabbed some homemade pesto that I’d tossed into the freezer last summer, tossed in some cajun spice to give it a bit more of a kick, and at the last minute decided to throw in some peas to give it a bit of veg.

All told it actually ended up quite delicious! I think next time I try this I’ll see if I can’t make fresh pesto, I think it lost some of it’s flavour in the freezer, and cut back on the cajun… I… may have dumped too much in…

I never said I was a good cook!

So this was a good as far as experimenting went, however, there have been bads.

Like the time I tried to cut back on the sugar in my chocolate chip cookies and ended up with basically just chocolate chip bread… wasn’t that good. Or when I really mess up my spices and the dish is inedible…

This is why I use recipes, someone has done the experimenting for me, I know they’re likely to work (unless there’s parsnips in it) and I hope for the best as I work my way through.

The other issue is though, every person in my house has allergies. I’m allergic to Grapes (and anything made with/of) and pork, Hubby’s allergic to mustard, Roomie is allergic to Shellfish, and Roomie’s fiancé, who’s over enough that she counts, doesn’t eat gluten (she’s not allergic, but she’s not eaten it for about 2 years now).

This means that with almost any recipe I need at least a little bit of experimentation. Now I’ve managed to find substitutes for almost anything with grapes or pork, but mustard and shellfish, you just kind of have to leave out. There’s no alternate.

Gluten is touch and go too. I try using spelt flour (she can eat that), but it doesn’t behave the same as wheat flour so I’m never sure about proper substitution with it or how to fiddle with measurements…

It’s a lot of learning, I’m enjoying some parts of it, but I’d like to know that when I have company over, everyone can eat, and no one has to worry about getting sick.

Tomorrow I may write about the difficulties of living with allergies, I’m constantly amazed by how little tolerance there is for allergies even today, and I’ve got a bunch to say about it.

Now to go try to make something delicious… wish me luck.

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Dessert for breakfast – the healthy way

One of my favourite food blogs to haunt is Oh She Glows. Ange makes some of the most delicious looking recipes ever!!! Every post is something new, something droolworthy, and to top it off, she’s showing me new blogs to watch with her Vegan Recipe Link Love, I don’t know if my poor blog reader can handel the strain!

Not long ago, Ange tried to make a recipe with kasha, that flopped. I have had similar experiences with kasha, and when I wrote to Ange, asking her if she had any kasha recipes, she replied that this was her first time trying it.

Today, while I was pondering breakfast, I was (not surprisingly) flitting through Oh She Glows, drooling over the sweet potato oatmeal she made. Using these two meals as inspiration, I decided to see what I could come up with that involved Kasha, and could have dark chocolate chips on it. An added plus, before I put milk on it, it’s completely vegan, which doesn’t happen often with my breakfasts.

The results were delicious!!

Chocolate Banana Oatmeal with Kasha

1/2 c Kasha
1/2 c Oatmeal
2 c water
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp chia seeds
1-2 tsp cinnamon
1 banana
handful of dark chocolate chips

Bring water and salt to a boil. Rinse kasha well, then add with oatmeal, chia seeds and cinnamon to water. Turn heat to medium. Allow to simmer until thickened. Slice banana on top and sprinkle with chocolate chips.

I ate it with some milk on top and a side of green tea, it was delicious!

 

I also decided to play around with flavours as I had a can of cranberry sauce in the cupboard. I added about 1/4 c of cranberry sauce to the recipe, and left out the bananas and chocolate chips. It wasn’t as sweet but it was still good… I might try adding a touch of ginger with the cranberry sauce next time.

I think the main problem for me with the kasha is the texture, and by adding the oatmeal in with it, it made it less mushy. The flavour was still a bit different, but I think that’s more about getting used to something new than anything else. I’m working at trying new foods lately, different veggies, grains, and beans. I’m hoping to widen my pallet, because otherwise, I’d be eating a lot of tomato pasta, pizza, steak and potatoes and chili… and not much else.

I’ve got a taste for quinoa, I really like beans and chick peas, and I’m starting to try different fruits (dragon fruit is amazing!! but expensive…). I’m hoping by getting a wider range of foods I enjoy eating, I’ll be less bored with food and more open to making healthy choices.

Even if it takes longer to cook.

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