It’s soup season! Especially on a day like today. I haven’t actually seen much rain for the past few days but since Saturday Brooklyn has been chilly and raw. The kind of weather that even though it’s not really that cold outside, the dampness gets inside of you and your bones feel cold. Plus it’s just sad and depressing! It’s the holidays people! I don’t need a white Christmas, but a rainy one just won’t do.
Growing up as a kid, I was a Kraft Mac & Cheese girl all the way. I had a very discerning palate and if someone tried to feed me Velveta or worse–store brand–well, let’s just say I wasn’t a happy camper. I soon learned the error of my ways (though still rely on Annie’s Mac & Cheese for a quick dinner or lunch). There’s just something about all that artery clogging gooey cheese and cream that makes me happy. I seek out Mac & Cheese at places like S’MAC, Dumont Burger and Artisanal. But the stuff I make at home, that is truly my favorite spin on Mac & Cheese is actually healthy! That’s right–no cream or butter, yet still super creamy thanks to one special ingredient.
Admit it, you say you love pumpkins, but you’re really in it for the seeds. I haven’t carved a pumpkin in years. Yes it’s fun, but they rot so quickly. There goes a perfectly good pumpkin that could have been turned into soup or bread or muffins. I love food too much to waste any of it. So instead I keep my one (sometimes two or three) out and un-carved for the Halloween season. After I cut them in half, roast and puree the flesh, just like I do Butternut Squash.
This is the time of year where every trip to the Greenmarket results in bringing home at least one butternut squash. I love butternut squash but hate the effort it requires. Peeling, cutting, roasting… A few months ago I made a Roasted Apple & Butternut Squash salad for a dinner party. Yeah, forgot how much of a pain peeling squash is. So for the most part I stick to butternut squash puree. My secret is NO PEELING and minimal effort.
It took me a long time to master risotto. Many a times did I end up with dry risotto, or even worse–burned risotto, with only 2-3 cups from the whole pot able to be salvaged. But once I finally got the hang of it, I went with it. Asparagus and citrus, mushroom and kale, and most recently curried butternut squash.