Kat eats local

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Tag "squash"

Another post with no picture. The other day I roasted a couple of acorn squash (cut in half, seeds removed, face down – no added oil or sugar) and had them left over in the fridge as we didn’t end up eating them. I threw two halves in the blender (skin on) with a frozen banana, half a cup or so of yogurt, some water, some coconut milk (can you tell I’m cleaning out the fridge?), maple syrup and blackstrap molasses for sweetness and a spoonful of protein powder. The result? A sweet, thick smoothie that’s reminiscent of pumpkin pie.

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It was a rainy, rainy morning here in Toronto, so of course my thoughts turned to oatmeal. I’d had success with pumpkin butter oatmeal recently so I figured, why not skip a step?

When I make oatmeal for a weekday breakfast I either make instant at work (Nature’s Path maple nut mixed with Ruth’s hemp and chia cereal) or I go all the way and make steel-cut oats at home and carry to work in a Thermos. Steel-cut take a good 20 minutes to cook but if you cook them while you’re getting ready for work, they’re actually more convenient because they cook so slowly. My recipe is a 1:4 ratio – boil 1 1/3 cups water with salt and stir in 1/3 cup steel-cut oats, then simmer until tender.

Once the oats were cooked, I stirred in some cooked butternut squash. (Cut in half, scoop out seeds, roast face down on a parchment-lined sheet at 375F until tender, then scrape out flesh.) If you puree the squash in a food processor it will be smoother, but I kind of like it lumpy. You could use canned as well here. I put in between 1/2 and 1 cup (wasn’t measuring):

And stirred it in. Add molasses and maple syrup:

And spices (here: cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger):

And hemp seeds:

Stir together well. Close-up:

Then, if you’re transporting the oatmeal, transfer into your Thermos. I like to pre-heat mine with some boiling water so it’s not cold from the cupboard.

Topped with a few pecans and ready to go!

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Purple kale salad, squash/leek/corn/wild rice salad, and farro with lentils, caramelized onions and feta (I made mine with spelt and red onions). Looks very wintry – appropriate for the first week after daylight savings ends.

Kale, squash, leek and onions from Plan B. Feta from Ewenity and beluga lentils from Mountain Path both via Fiesta Farms.

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I went to the Green Barn market on Saturday and stocked up on some deliciousness from Vicki’s Veggies, including bags of spinach, arugula and kale and a giant butternut squash. The squash was so big I used it for two squash salad recipes (both from Smitten Kitchen) that I’ve been enjoying for lunches all week: one with lentils and goat cheese (although I used a soft sheep’s cheese from Monforte) and one with chickpeas and a tahini dressing. It’s the latter that you see in the picture and that I’m eating for lunch today, alongside my standard kale salad.

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Just started my lunch and snapped a photo to share. It’s a meal I’ve been enjoying all week and (with a bit of prep work) it’s super easy.

I got two acorn squash in my organics box last week so on Sunday, I cut them in half and roasted them in the oven until tender. I also washed, tore and spun dry a bunch of black kale to keep in the fridge all week. Kale keeps well without dressing – I will often just put the whole salad spinner in the fridge as I find greens keep well in it, but sometimes I’ll transfer to a reused plastic container that I’d bought greens in from the store. Also make sure you have on hand some goat cheese and some nuts or seeds to sprinkle – I used a blend of hemp and chia but I could see using squash/pumpkinseeds, pecans or walnuts as well.

The morning of (or the night before, which is less ideal), make your kale salad for that day. Put the leaves in a bowl and drizzle over it some oil (I used hemp), the juice of half a lemon and a bit of maple syrup or honey. Then massage the kale until the dressing coats it and it wilts a little bit. To measure, I stuff the kale leaves into the container I intend to use before I put them into the bowl. Then I know they’ll fit.

Bring to work your salad, half a squash (or more if you can store in a fridge at work during the week), the goat cheese and the seeds/nuts. Then, at lunchtime, just microwave or heat your squash for a minute or so, mash on some goat cheese and sprinkle with seeds, then serve with salad on the side.

This is a light lunch so I’ve been finishing with a dessert of yogurt. This week I’m eating maple sheep’s yogurt from Ewenity, but Greek yogurt is also a good choice as it’s high in protein so very filling.

Enjoy!

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