Butternut Squash Soup

This is the third week I’ve made soup, and I’m really digging how easy they are to whip up. Butternut squash soup is one of my absolute favorites, especially when my mom makes it. She did have to adapt her recipe to make it dairy free for me, but once we got over that hurdle, we were back in business. The recipe I used my soup is actually vegan, so we don’t have any issues with dairy.

The last time I made butternut squash soup on my own, I ended up potato-peeling my thumb trying to get the skin off. This time around I bought the squash from the freezer section, already peeled and cubed. All I had to do was steam the squash in the microwave and add that to the other vegetables I roasted in the oven.

img_20181013_1642566661128360763.jpg
Veggies for roasting

Sweet potato

Carrots

Celery

Onion

Garlic cloves, whole

Butternut squash

Vegetable broth

All I did was roughly chop the vegetables and roast in the oven for 1.5 hours, steam the butternut squash, and blend it all up with enough vegetable broth to thin it out (about 2.5 cups)

img_20181015_164122567936903704.jpg

Maybe not the best looking in photographs, but this soup is delicious. I do think I may have had my fill of blended soups, however, and will try something that is still chunky next week. I’m thinking I may give vegetarian chili a try.

Highlights of the weekend:

  1. I sold a bunch of stuff on Ebay (Christmas money!)
  2. We went to the cider mill and picked apples
  3. I got to spend some time with my nephews
  4. I finally made waffles for the freezer!

Things I’m looking forward to:

  1. Pay day!
  2. Fall walks

Goals:

  1. Work out, dang it
  2. Avoid the candy dish at work (that is conveniently located in my office)
  3. Vacuum the apartment

Have a good one, guys!

Advertisements

Roasted Cauliflower and Red Bell Pepper Soup

Another fall week, another soup. We had a chilly weekend, with lots of rain and running around. We looked at two more houses (duds) and I got lunch with a friend (where she asked me to be her Matron of Honor!) We were supposed to go apple picking with some friends, but had to cancel once the storms rolled through.

I think I’m on a good-soup roll. This one is healthy, dairy-free, and delicious. I cheated a little and used roasted red peppers out of the jar, so the whole thing came together pretty quickly. I also added some extra roasted veggies I had on hand from meal prepping over the weekend. Soup is one of the best things you can make to use up all those extras!

img_20181008_16403387878431565.jpg

1 white onion, diced

Garlic, minced

3 cups vegetable broth

Salt & Pepper

Roasted red bell peppers

1 head cauliflower, chopped and roasted in the oven (I sprinkled mine with chili powder)

Extra veggies: roasted balsamic carrots, sweet potatoes, chives

I sautéed the onions and garlic, added the broth and brought to a boil. Add in the veggies and simmered for 20 mins. Transfer into a blender and blend it all up! If you have one, you can use an immersion blender instead. This would be bomb with a grilled cheese. Or crusty sourdough bread. Or hunks of cheddar cheese. Or a grilled cheese made with crusty sourdough bread and cheddar cheese.

One year my sister and I got together (when we lived in the same state) and we each made two different types of soup, and made a swap. This is one of my favorite things we did together, and hopefully we can do again. It was fun to cook, hang out, and we each walked away with four different types of soup to go in our freezer, which lasted all winter long. The best we can do right now is exchange recipes, which works pretty well, but isn’t quite the same.

‘Til next time ❤

Friday favorites: Fall edition

Fall is one of my favorite times of the year. The weather cools down, but it’s not too cold. The leaves change, the days get a little shorter, and it’s the perfect hygge time (a quality of coziness and comfortable friendliness that causes a feeling of happiness or well-being – described of as a defining characteristic of Danish culture).

I’m working on slowing down and appreciating the little things, being cozy, and minimizing my stress.

  1. Cider and doughnuts. Of course the cider and doughnuts from the cider mill are the best. But store brought is good too, especially as a treat at work img_20180928_080338_839774820247.jpg
  2. Stephen King. He’s been my favorite author for as long as I can remember. Currently I’m reading Four Past Midnight, though I believe I’ve read it before. As I was trying to declutter my living room I also found a collection of movies based on his books, so I’m really excited to start watching those. Just in time for Halloween.
  3. Soup. It’s cozy, it’s warm, it’s happy. I’m on the hunt for the perfect soup recipe. The first soup I made this season is potato and broccoli. What’s your favorite soup recipe?
  4. Big sweaters. The cozier the better, man.
  5. Flannel shirts. My favorite thing to wear is a men’s XL long sleeved flannel, it’s so comfortable. I recently went out and bought two new flannels, in my size. Here’s me in one over the weekend!

What are your fall favorites? Apple cinnamon or pumpkin spice?

Potato & Broccoli Soup

Fall is officially here in Michigan. The weather is chilly, it’s been raining for days, and football is on. I’ve made it my mission to find the perfect soup recipe this fall. I have a pretty bad track record with messing up soup, so it’s quite a challenge for me. I had one left over potato from my mother-in-law, and was determine to make something good.

This soup is great for me, because it has almost no dairy in it & it’s still perfectly creamy. I used a recipe I found online, but tweaked it a little by adding chopped carrots & sweat potatoes and swapping the chicken broth for vegetable. You could make this soup vegan by leaving out the parmesan cheese.

img_20181001_203326368_11348015167.jpg

3 cups vegetable broth

1 large potato, 1 small sweet potato

1 white onion, chopped & sautéed

Garlic

Salt & pepper

2 cups chopped broccoli

1 cup chopped carrots

1/4 cup parmesan cheese

Boom! You have soup. And it’s delicious. I pureed everything through the broccoli, then added the broccoli & carrots to cook a little bit longer to take some of the crunch out. I had it last night with asiago cheese bread, and have crackers to eat it with at work.

I was able to cook this up Saturday afternoon pretty quickly. It felt so cozy to be cooking soup after our walk in the woods. We stopped after looking at another house & had a walk through a wooded path, with a pit stop at Starbucks for a hot chocolate. Did you know you can get peppermint hot chocolate year round? I thought it was seasonal to the holidays, so I was pretty excited by that news! I fell in love with the trail, and can’t wait to explore it some more. Here we are being a couple of goofs!

We actually walk in all seasons (even in the winter). But fall is one of my favorite times, it’s not too hot & sweaty, but still not too cold that you need to bundle up so much. And let me tell you, a hot chocolate on a walk is a game changer – I’m going to have to bring some along with me next time.

Thanks for reading!

 

Vegan Black Bean Tacos

Taco Tuesday? Yes please. And I get to enjoy tacos all week long! Tacos are a little difficult to meal prep, since we don’t want them getting soggy, but I’ve found a pretty good solution without too much work.

Behold, vegan taco boats!

img_20180930_1532264862084528044.jpg

Taco filling: Black beans // roasted corn // cilantro // chili lime seasoning

Whole wheat shells // taco filling // guacamole

I had three for lunch today, and I am stuffed! I made three portions and there is plenty of guacamole to last, and I don’t even miss the cheese. Not that I’m opposed to cheese, I just didn’t buy any extra to go in these this week.

Goals for this week:

  1. put in a bomb offer on this house
  2. work out three times (at least)
  3. make waffles

How do you like your tacos? what are your goals for the week?

Meal prep: breakfast bowls

What do you do with a ton of extra potatoes? I made breakfast bowls! I also used two for baked potatoes, which I’ll eat sometime during the week as a quick side.

I roasted the potatoes in the oven with a little Italian seasoning and chili powder. I added a little extra steamed broccoli, some scrambled eggs, and cheddar cheese. It’s so nice to be able to pop this in the microwave in the morning and have breakfast in less than 2 minuets.

img_20180923_0945023341625473005.jpg

Top with hot sauce, salsa, or chives/green onions.

I still have one big, fat potato left – any suggestions as to what I should do with it?

Frugal Fall Checklist

I did one for summer, now it’s time to make a fall list. I like making lists because it lets me set goals and check back on what I accomplished.

  1. Go to a cider mill (& enjoy some cider and doughnuts)
  2. Carve a pumpkin
  3. Roast pumpkin seeds
  4. Make homemade applesauce
  5. Watch a horror film or two, preferably in my jammies
  6. Visit Huckleberry Railroad
    1. Visit the corn maze
    2. Ride the train
  7. Have crockpot chili and watch a football game
  8. Finish the blanket I started crocheting over the summer
  9. Bake some bread
  10. Find the perfect soup recipe
  11. Make a fall craft
  12. Have some candy corn
  13. Have a board game night with friends

What are your plans for the fall? Is there anything I should add to my list for the season?