Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Garden Squash Soup

I've got a yummy new recipe for fall gardeners and all who like fall vegetables.  The weather has changed.  Hot sunny weather is gone.  We've had some Indian Summer days, then a stretch of rainy weather brought on the need for a bowl of warm soup, made with the vegetables of the season.

We made this recipe yesterday when it was too wet to do anything in a garden, and we will likely make it again the next time it rains again.

Garden Squash Soup
Yield: a full pot of soup for today with some left over for lunches tomorrow

6 cups of peeled diced winter squash, butternut or other orange squash
3 carrots, chopped
1 onion diced
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 Tablespoon of chili powder (medium to mild)
1/2 teaspoon cayanne powder (optional)

Blend until very smooth:
6 cups of water
3 stalks of celery
2 large tomatoes (for the blender)
1 cup cashews or other nuts (optional)

Add to the soup pot:
2 - 3 tomatoes diced (for the soup pot)
1/2 green pepper, diced
3 cans black beans, drained
4 cups frozen corn
6 cups fresh greens, such as spinach, beet greens, or kale, cut in small pieces
1/2 cup fresh basil or 1 Tablespoon dried basil
Salt to taste

In a large soup pot, sauté, in a little water, the first 7 ingredients for about 10 - 15 minutes.  While it is cooking blend the celery, tomatoes, and cashews until very smooth.  When the squash is tender, add the blended vegetable broth, and the remaining ingredients, and cook and stir until the greens are wilted and everything is heated through.

Watermelon - No Recipe Needed

 We've been eating out the garden for months.  
Simple food.  Simple recipes.  Simply delicious.

It's our first year to successfully grow watermelon.  All agree it was a true success.

We tried heirloom watermelon this time.  I think there is more life in those seeds.  They are huge.  In the photo below the white seed is from the orange melon, the brown and black speckled one is from the red melon.  The tiny black seed is from the grocery store melon.  The heirloom seeds are easy to find, easy to remove, and there aren't as many of them.  I like this recipe.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Beets and Zucchini - What to do I do with Them?

We have been having so much fun with the produce coming out of our garden, but at times it comes much faster then we can eat it.  

We have some pretty beets in the garden this year.  When sliced thinly with the mandolin slicer the Chioga beets look like peppermint candy, and the golden beets look like disks of sunshine beside them.  I am dehydrating them to put in soup, or to eat as little veggie chips in the winter.

 I keep this noisy dehydrator on the deck where it doesn't add heat to my kitchen.  My deck is almost like our summer kitchen, for that is where I do my canning also.

 If the zucchini is large, I grate it and make zucchini bread, or zucchini patties (recipe in my last post).  If they are smaller I cook them in stir fry, or I slice them and dehydrate them for use later in the winter.  I think these will be good layered in some tomato sauce in a casserole dish with onions for some zucchini "lasagne".

My mandolin slicer also makes little match-stick sizes.  So I made a couple jars of them too. 

What are you doing with beets and zucchini?

Monday, September 5, 2011

Zucchini Patties - Gluten-free, Vegan, for the Freezer

We have been having a great summer of camping, and cooking, and eating, and canning, and more.  We've made some great food, but I haven't taken the time to post about it.  Our garden is producing large quantities of food right now, and we are eating it as fast as we can, and preserving the rest.

Zucchini is a plant that some people have an easy time with, but up until this year the squash bugs have been killing my plants before we got more then a handful of baby squash.  So this year I decided to plant more squash then the squash bugs could kill. (I can't handle patrolling for the deadly killers and squashing them.)  And my strategy worked.  We have a giant row now of giant zucchini and yellow crookneck squash plants.  We also had some in another part of the garden, so many that we ourselves took out a few plants to make room for other vegetables.

We have made yummy stir fries with it.  I've cooked it with garden tomatoes and basil and onions.  I've made a zucchini casserole.  And I figured out how to make zucchini patties.  But I still had to start giving away the "dreaded" zucchini.  My friend took a large box of them off my hands, and then sent me a recipe of what she did with them.  She not only made zucchini patties, she made six batches of them, for her freezer.  Now this starts getting exciting to me.  I'd love to have a freezer shelf full of delicious gluten-free vegan patties.  The recipe she sent me wasn't gluten-free, but I've worked it over, and the results passed approval with every family member today, in sandwiches, with thick slices of garden tomato, sweet onion sliced thinly, vegenaise, ketchup, etc.  

Zucchini Patties - Gluten-free, Vegan
For the Freezer 

1.  Get out your biggest bowl and start grating your zucchini and/or yellow crookneck squash to see how many batches you can make.  There is 9 cups of zucchini per batch.  Measure out how much you have.  I had enough for 5 batches.  I divided it between my two giant bowls that I use when canning fruit, so I would have room to add ingredients and mix.  Use an electric grater or food processor of some sort to get the job done quickly.  (You can also just make one batch at a time for immediate eating or for freezing, depending on your family size.)  The patties can be used in sandwiches, like a vegeburger.  Or they can be arranged in a baking dish, covered with gravy, and baked like a casserole.

One batch made averaged around 63 patties.  5 batches made 316 patties.


9 cups of zucchini and/or yellow crookneck quash, shredded in a food procesor
4 medium onions, or so, chopped in a food proceesor
4 cups of gluten free rolled oats
2 more cups of gluten free rolled oats, ground up in your blender, food processor or grinder until it is a flour consistency
2-3 cups of gluten free bread crumbs.  (I make bread crumbs with gluten-free Millet Bread, by Food for Life, from the freezer section at the store.  Thaw the bread in the oven or toaster, then use the S-blade in the food processor to break it up into tiny pieces. The Millet bread goes a long ways.  Two loaves was enough for 5 batches. Another kind of bread might work fine also.  You could also use more oats instead of the bread crumbs.)
4 Tbsp La Chikky Seasoning by the Vegetarian Express (or other chicken-style seasoning)
1 Tbsp salt (adjust this amount if you use a chicken-style seasoning with more or less salt, such as McKays, which has a large amount of salt.  Bills Best brand might need more salt.)
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion power
1/4 cup of Nutritional yeast flakes
1 cup raw cashew pieces, chopped or ground small (use different nuts or seeds if you desire)
1 cup raw sunflower kernels, chopped or ground small (use different nuts or seeds if you desire)

Shred the zucchini and/or yellow crook/neck squash on medium shred.  Place in a very large bowl.  Chop or grind up the onions finely, and add to the zucchini.  Add all the other ingredients.  Mix thoroughly.  Use a wooden spoons or clean hands and keep working it until the whole mixture is quite wet and holds together well.  (It is ok to let the mixture sit overnight in the refrigerator to set up even more, and then bake the patties in the morning.)

Spray a baking sheet or two.  Use a 1/3 cup measuring cup as a scoop.  Place a wide canning ring on the the baking sheet.  Place 1/3 cup of the zucchini mixture in the ring, and flatted down into the ring with a spoon.  Move the ring and make another patty.  Repeat until the tray is full.

Bake at 400 degrees.  After the tray has been in the oven 20 minutes.  Remove and turn over each patty.  Then bake for another 20 minutes.  If you have enough baking sheets you can have them filled and ready when the first trays are finished.  This helps speed up the large batch baking process.

Place the baked patties on something to cool.  When cool place them in ziplock bags in appropriate numbers for your family.  Label the bags, and put them in the freezer to use through the winter months.

It took a little work last night and this morning, but it is going to be a real treat to have gluten-free convenience food in my freezer for months.  If I have enough time, I think I'll make some more before the garden stops making zucchini.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Easy Fruit Cobbler (Gluten-free, Vegan), With Raspberries

The raspberries are producing every day now with our sunny warm, but not too warm weather.   Twice I've made my favorite quick and easy fruit cobbler recipe with raspberries.  It is fruity like cobbler, but you can eat it in your hand like cake.  The recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, low in sugar and fat.

Easy Fruit Cobbler (Gluten-free, Vegan)

Oil to grease the 9 x 13 dish.

1/2 cup sugar of your choice, such as Florida Crystals or sucanat
2 cups Sorghum Flour*
2 Tablespoons Tapioca Starch
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 3/4 soy or rice milk, or milk of your choice
2 cups fruit, fresh or frozen, such as raspberries, blackberries, cherries, or peaches
1/2 cup walnuts or other nuts

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Grease your baking dish.

3.  In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar, flour, tapioca starch, and baking powder.  Mix well.  Add the milk of choice and mix until smooth. Pour this batter into the baking dish.

4.  Arrange the fruit over the batter and sprinkle with the nuts.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

*If you can eat gluten, you may make this recipe with 2 cups of whole wheat pastry flour to replace the sorghum flour and the Tapioca starch.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Farmhouse Seed Bread, part 2

We made a loaf of the Farmhouse Seed Bread last night, from a recipe we mentioned in a previous post.

The recipe looked good, contained nutritious ingredients we were interested in using, and now we know - It tastes good too!

This morning my in-house food photographer, aka, my 11 year old son, took the bread and worked on an artist presentation in the morning light, so you could see how lovely the loaf looked.

You can get the recipe by clicking on the link and going to the The Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen. The ingredients went together pretty easily.  The directions are easy to follow.  One thing I didn't notice before making the bread is that I needed to allow 1.5 hours for the bread to rise.  Most of the gluten-free breads I've made lately have a short rising time.  So I had to stay up much later then I wished waiting for the bread to rise and then finish baking.  The bread came out crusty on the outside and a lovely warm brown color.  I didn't put any olive oil on the outside before baking, or sprinkle on the seeds as the recipe suggested.  Inside the bread was moist, but not too much so.  Everyone in the family liked it toasted.  The flavor is very nice for a whole grain, gluten-free bread.   We expect to make this recipe often.

All photos in this post by William, of Fins, Feathers and Fur Photography.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Gluten-free, Vegetarian, dairy-free, Recipe Resource

I want to tell you about a gluten-free, dairy-free, vegetarian, resource, with dozens of excellent looking recipes.  If you are looking for a particular type of recipe, this list might have it for it.  Karina, at the Gluten-free Goddess, has been gluten-free since 2001, and has even written a cookbook.  You may find you have a different religious point of view then she does; if that is true, scroll past the chatter, and go straight to the recipe.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Farmhouse Seed Bread

In one of the blogs I read regularly, I just found a new bread recipe that appears to meet all the expectations I have in a recipe.  And it has beautiful photos too.  I haven't tried it yet, but I definitely will, maybe even tomorrow.  And I'll let you know how it turns out.  But just in case you need the recipe right now, I'll give you the link today.  You can find it at Nourishing Meals' Blog.   Be sure to comment if you try it, on this blog and at Nourishing Meals also.  It is called Farmhouse Seed Bread.  It is Xanthum free, soy free, flax free, nut free, and vegan.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Gluten-free, Vegan Carrot Muffins

This muffin fresh from the oven won't last long.
We baked the carrot cake that I posted last on this blog as muffins, and it was a great success.  I just had to show you some samples to wet your appetite.

It's going to go fast.
The recipe made 16 muffins.  I baked them for 25 minutes.  If your muffin eaters don't like strong spice, decrease the cinnamon and ginger in the recipe, as you probably won't put frosting on top of muffins.  The frosting balances out the spiciness in the cake recipe.  Find the recipe here.

One bite left . . . gone.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Gluten-free, Vegan Carrot Orange Cake, With Coconut Orange Frosting

Grandma says the cake tasted "really good!"

We needed a birthday cake in our family last week, and I got to be the one to bake it.  Gluten free baking is not easy, so I avoid it when possible.  But it wasn't possible this time.  This cake had to be what my family calls, "everything free", and still taste good to the extended family with no known food limitations.  But since it wasn't for my husband, it didn't really make it "everything free", and included more oil and sugar then normal.  I decided that carrot cake would be a good risk.  I looked at a lot of recipes on line, gathered some ideas, and then crafted my own recipe.

I think it turned out pretty good.  It was delicate in texture, as many gluten free baked goods are, but it had a nice texture.

To see what the cake looks like as muffins, without frosting, or to get a few ideas on how to turn this cake recipe into muffins or cupcakes, go to this page.

Gluten-free Vegan Carrot-Orange Cake
(Soy-free, corn-free, nut-free, and pineapple-free, too)
By Barbara at wildflowermorningrecipes.blogspot.com

1 cup rice milk (or other milk)
3 T Ener-G Egg Replacer
1 cup rice flour
1 cup Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free flour mix, (or a mixture of garbonzo flour, and potato starch)
1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup coconut flour (grind up in your grinder or Vita-Mix)
1/4 cup ground chia seeds (or flax seeds)
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup turbinado sugar (or other sugar)
3 cups grated carrots
3/4 cup oil
3/4 cup orange, peeled, and blended (about 1 orange)

1.  Set the oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 8" round cake pans with palm shortening or some other kind of oil, and then dust with rice flour, pouring off the excess.

2. In a medium bowl, mix the rice milk and Egg Replacer and set aside.

3. In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients, starting with the rice flour, and moving down to the turbinado sugar.  Mix thoroughly.  Add the grated carrots and mix.

4.  In the medium bowl in step number 2, add the blended orange, and oil, and mix.  Add these wet ingredients to the dry ingredients in step number 3, and mix until all the dry ingredients are incorporated into the wet ingredients, but don't over mix.

5.  Pour the batter into the two prepared cake pans and slip into the oven.  Bake 35 - 40 minutes.  Remove from oven, and cool in the pans.  This is a delicate, but flavorful cake.  Don't remove them from the pans until they are cool and you are ready to frost it.  It will frost easier if you freeze the cake layers first.  Then lay a flat plate on top of the cake pan, and carefully flip the cake over, and slide onto your cake serving tray.  Spread frosting on top of that layer.  Then put the plate onto the second cake, carefully flip it onto the plate, and then gently slide it onto the frosted bottom layer.  Then frost the whole cake.

Coconut Orange Frosting
By Barbara at wildflowermorningrecipes@blogspot.com

3/4 cup of the thickest part of a can of coconut milk (If there isn't a thick layer, set it in the refrigerator for a couple hours until it separates)
1 cup palm shortening (non-hydrogenated)
1/2 to 1 tsp vanilla (gluten free if needed)
1/2 to 1 tsp orange oil or flavoring (adjust amount to desired taste)
2 or more cups of powdered sugar (not all kinds are gluten free)

Place all ingredients, except the powdered sugar into a mixer bowl, or into a food processor.  Mix until very smooth.  Add powdered sugar, add more if needed for taste or texture.

Garbanzo Olive Dip

We have a new dip that we are making at home, and Grandma says we have to make it again.  So I'm sharing the recipe with you, so I can remember what I put in it too.  We used it for dipping some new chips made out of just popcorn and sea salt, but of course they would be good for other chips too, and as a nice spread for some rice cakes, corn thins, or of course a sandwich with homemade bread.

Garbanzo Olive Dip
By Barbara at wildflowermorningrecipes@blogspot.com

2 cans of garbonzos, drained (14 oz. cans)
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped or pressed
1/8 of an onion, more or less
1/4 cup tahini
1 medium tomato, or a large handful of cherry tomatoes
juice of one lemon
1/2 - 1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
salt, if desired
1 can of olives, drained (ripes green ones are especially delicious)

Dump everything into the food processor, except the olives, and process with the sharp S-Blade until everything is ground down and moving easy.  Dump in the olives, and process until they are chopped up in little pieces you can still see, but avoid grinding them down to nothing, unless you prefer that texture.  Serve.

If you don't have a food processor, here is an idea to do it in a basic blender.

First, pre-mash your garbanzos a bit with a fork.  Put them in the blender with the tomato cut in chunks, and the lemon juice.  Blend, and scrape, until you have it at a more dip like consistency.  Scrape it out into a bowl, and then add ingredients.  Instead of using raw onion and garlic, mix in more onion and garlic powder.  Use chopped olives instead of pitted olives.  Mix everything together and then start dipping, spread in your sandwich, or on your Corn Thins.