Saturday, September 25, 2010

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup for Redlands Daily Facts Food Column 9.25

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 tbsp olive oil
4 cups chopped yellow onions (approx 3 large)
2 tbsp curry powder
5 lbs butternut squash (approx 2 large)
1.5 lbs sweet apples, McIntosh or similar (approx 4)
2 tsp kosher salt
½ tsp ground pepper
2 cups water (or sub with chicken stock)
2 cups apple cider

1. Heat butter, olive oil, onions and curry powder in a large stockpot uncovered over low heat for 15-20 min or until onions are tender. Stir occasionally, scraping the bottom of pot.
2. Peel squash, cut in half and remove seeds. Dice squash, medium size in uniform sizes and shapes. Peel, quarter and core apples- cut into chunks.
3. Add squash, apples, salt, pepper, 2 cups water or ckn stock to pot. Bring to bowl, reduce heat, cover and cook over low heat for 30-40 min. until squash and apples are soft.
4. Process soup in food mill or in puree coarsely in food processor. (or puree with stick blender on stove top)
5. Pour soup back into pot. Add apple cider and water to desired consistency. Consistency should be thick and flavor should be sweet. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot, enjoy!

Baked Butternut Squash

1lb/450g Butternut Squash, peeled, medium dice in uniform shapes and sizes.
Olive oil
Salt, pepper
1/4 tsp/1ml Cinnamon
1/8 tsp/0.5ml Cardamon, ground
2 tbsp/30ml Brown Sugar
2 tbsp/30ml Lemon Juice
2 oz/60g Melted Butter

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Place diced squash in mixing bowl, coat evenly with drizzled olive oil and approx half of melted butter. Coat squash with salt, pepper, cinnamon, cardamon evenly After diced squash is evenly coated, place squash on baking sheet.
2. Drizzle lemon juice, olive oil and remaining melted butter over the top of squash.
3. Bake uncovered in 350 F oven until tender, approx 50 minutes.

Squash should be brightly colored and slightly crisp, and show little moisture loss when done.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Kale Chips !

Kale Chips are kale leaves brushed in olive oil and baked in the oven on a baking sheet... That's it! Kale chips are perfect broken and eaten alone or crunched over a salad as a garnish. Brush olive oil on leaves evenly to ensure even cooking. (I like to use a silicone brush) Pre-heat oven to 400 F. Place each individual leaf, after coating with olive oil, on baking sheet, edges touching but no overlap. Sprinkle with sea salt. Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes, rotating pan mid-way to ensure even cooking. Leaves should are done when they're crunchy and dark. The end result should be crispy, dark leaves- in roughly the same size the leaves were before baking.

New Column Next Week !

Food column will resume next week. Stay tuned for Fall recipes: Roasted Butternut Squash and Sweet Potatoes! You can view on-line at or in print in Saturday's edition!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Washington Produce

For wonderful, fresh produce I've long been a fan of the wonderful products available from Washington Produce Redlands. For more information or to register, select and purchase fresh produce go to Friday I picked up my produce order from Washington Produce in Redlands for a private event I hosted on Sunday. Some of this weeks order included eggplant, zucchini, squash and carrots. I took a photo of these items, before and after grilling, which you may view on this blog. Such wonderfully colorful food and everyone really enjoyed it.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Redlands Farmer's Market... yesterday.

Yesterday at the Redlands Farmer's Market, I picked up several delicious treats to use for a client dinner in Riverside. At the farmer's market, I was so excited to re-connect with Jane and Mindy from Sunnyside Local! Mindy and Jane are new on the scene at Redlands Farmer's Market. Yesterday, Jane and Mindy were sampling delicious pesto with a perfect flavor balance and tangy finish. Yummy! For Saturday night's dinner, I picked up Japanese Eggplant, heirloom tomatoes and beautiful figs from Sunnyside Local. I grilled the Japanese Eggplant with balsamic vinegar sea salt and olive oil. We used the heirloom tomatoes to make a lovely caprese salad, The figs were used for an appetizer: figs, goat cheese and farmer's market honey from Soffel's Farm in Redlands- on a toasted crostini. The figs were a huge hit and everyone loved all of the wonderful food from Sunnyside Local. Thank you, Jane and Mindy !!!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Squash Blossoms (As featured in Redlands Daily Facts Food Column)

For additional information about squash blossoms, see my food column in Redlands Daily Facts or view search "squash blossoms' in search field)

12 fresh squash blossoms
Goat Cheese (or sub with ricotta)
Fresh Herbs (thyme, basil, any fresh herb you like)
Olive Oil
Sea Salt

piping bag
sheet pan

Preheat oven 300 F. After selecting herb, cut herb leaves in fine cut, mix in bowl with goat cheese (or ricotta(). Mash herbs into cheese with fork. When herbs are well mixed with cheese, place in piping bag. Pipe with wide tip on bag, into the top of each individual flower. Lightly separate flower pedal opening on each blossom. Place piping bag inside blossom and fill blossom with herb cheese mixture. Lightly touch blossom flower back together to seal cheese interior. Place single layer of flowers on baking sheet, lightly drizzle olive oil on blossoms, then bake Bake in oven just long enough to melt cheese inside blossoms, watch closely. Bake 4-7 min max. Remove flowers serve on platter alone. Or place inside a panini!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Memories ....

While reviewing photos for this weeks food column, I ran across these shots from the Feasting on the Farm Event. Fond memories of a special evening at Powell's Farm in San Timoteo Canyon, Redlands. All photography courtesy of ModPhotography (

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Food Column This Saturday.... again!

Just making the final edits for this Saturday's Food Column in The Redlands Daily Facts. Be sure to see this week's entry or read on-line at The article will run on Saturday September 11, 2010.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Redlands Farmer's Market... TODAY!

Just got back from Redlands Farmer's Market. So exciting to see the latest selection of squash and melons today at Powell's Farm table. I visited with the lovely Mamie Powell this morning, what a new beautiful selection of squash and melons displayed on their table. I'm planning to roast some butternut squash soon. Also had to pick up my food-safe locally harvested eggs from Joe's Eggs. Saw some beautiful greens at Three Sister's Farm. I think I'll make Kale Chips tonight!

If you are local, pick up today's (Sat 9/4) Redlands Daily Facts to view my new food column! The Facts has a wonderful new editor with a fresh new perspective- I'm excited to have the opportunity to assist them with a new "Food" section. Also, The Facts delivers 7 days a week, in the morning. I just renewed my subscription but always view on-line when I'm traveling at Take a look and follow me in The Facts !

Friday, September 3, 2010

New Culinary Column !

I'm writing a new culinary column which will run this weekend in the Redlands Daily Facts and on-line at The purpose of the column is to educate the home chef with recipes, cooking techniques and information about culinary products--- with a focus on sustainability.