Yummy Meals

Here are highlights from some recent successful suppers. First up is the squash tart. Frozen flaky crust is a new find. How did I not know of its existence before now? It seems like a good thing to keep in the freezer for producing surefire yummy-ness on short notice. I’m pretty sure you could wrap up anything—sweet or savory—in this stuff and it would taste good. Yummy, flaky, golden, buttery goodness. Still need a side dish for your Christmas dinner? Try this.

rustic squash tart
Rustic squash tart
seared chicken and squash tart
Pan-seared chicken with mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes and the squash tart. We used Downing Family Farm chicken breasts, Earth Elements dried tomatoes, and shiitakes from Mushroom Planet, and Oklahoma acorn squash for the tart. This meal is almost all-Oklahoma food! Maybe someone in the co-op could start selling frozen flaky crust?

holiday ham with brussels sprouts
Holiday Ham Slice (see recipe below) with brussels sprouts.
minute steak, kale, squash soup
Minute steak with cherry-mustard glaze, kale, and squash soup (see recipe below). This was my first experience with minute steaks. I was searching our slow cooker cookbook for a recipe when Matt pointed out the irony in looking for a way to slow-cook minute steaks. Wasn’t the point of minute steaks is that they cook quickly? Touché. So, I found this awesome recipe online.

Holiday Ham Slices
from Rowdy Stickhorse
:: 3/4 c whole-berry cranberry sauce
:: 4–6 green onions, finely chopped
:: 3 T water
:: 1 T Dijon mustard
:: 1 T butter, melted
:: 1 t brown sugar
:: 1/4 t ground ginger
:: 4 slices fully-cooked ham

In a small saucepan, combine the first seven ingredients. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly. In a skillet, cook ham slices for 3–4 minutes or until heated though. Pour sauce over ham.

Cream of Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
from The Best Light Recipe
:: 2 lb butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
:: 1 medium onion, halved and sliced 1/2-inch thick
:: 2 t vegetable oil
:: salt
:: 3 garlic cloves, minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 1 T)
:: 1/4 c dry white wine
:: 1 bay leaf
:: 1-1/2 c low-sodium chicken broth
:: 1-1/2 c low-sodium vegetable broth
:: 1/2 c half-and-half
:: ground black pepper
1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 450˚. Toss the squash, onion, 1 t oil, and 1/2 t salt on a rimmed baking sheet then spread in an even layer. Roast until vegetables are well browned and softened, stirring occasionally, 25–30 minutes.
2. Transfer the roasted vegetables to a large saucepan. Add the remaining 1 t oil, cover, and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until the squash is softened further, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the wine and bay leaf, cook until the wine has reduced by half, about 1 minute. Add the broths. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; cover, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer until the soup is flavorful, about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf.
3. Puree the mixture in a blender (or food processor) until smooth, and return to a clean saucepan. Add the half-and-half and warm over low heat until hot, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (The soup can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 4 days. Warm over low heat until hot; do not boil.)

Tricia’s notes: I doubled the chicken broth and left out the veggie broth. I did not transfer the soup to a blender. That is such a pain in the ass. I just used a potato masher to break up the already-soft squash chunks.

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