Tag: Gluten-Free and Vegan Thanksgiving

Broccoli Soup with Sour Cream and Toasted Almonds

Broccoli Soup with Sour Cream and Toasted Almonds

Between Wednesday and Friday of last week, I’d cooked three separate and distinct meals (one of which was the Coconut Pork Salad below)… and so had various and sundry little containers of meat and vegetables I knew I’d make into a hefty salad come Saturday night when we had planned to splurge a little on an amazon prime movie to belatedly catch “Victoria and Abdul.” (Don’t miss it if you haven’t seen it!) When I visually weighed those leftovers, an accompanying bowl of soup was an obvious necessity.

Continue reading “Broccoli Soup with Sour Cream and Toasted Almonds”

Butternut Squash-Wild Rice Soup

Butternut Squash-Wild Rice Soup

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above: soup without half and half

If you’re a soup cookbook writer, you probably love soup. I love soup. I’m seldom happier than when I’m heating up a kettle while chopping a big pile of vegetables.  Perhaps I’m happier at the table with a hot bowl and a cold class of wine or driving home knowing there’s a big pot of soup in the fridge making me feel rich. I don’t know.  

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above: Vegetable soup was a puréed delight at a street cafe in Dubrovnik, Croatia last month

Coming up with a new soup happens in one of many different ways. Maybe there’s  something on sale I drag home or someone somewhere has a special dietary need. I might be watching my weight. Perhaps someone leaves garden bounty on my front porch.  Could be my sister’s in town and I’m cooking for her. More than once a freezer’s had to be cleaned out and some meat has to be cooked. Whatever happens, however it happens, a big pot of goodness somehow takes shape and comes to the bowl making us happy, healthy, and wondering where it came from. It’s a gift. That’s for sure.

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above: my Guacamole Soup with Grilled Shrimp from the soup book–made for my sister’s visit

Come fall, I’m nuts about winter squash. I’m always looking for something to do with it. Something new. Or old again. I also have a heart for wild rice–which is not really rice, but a water-grown grass– having lived in Minnesota.  Somehow, last week, needing a big pot of vegetarian soup for a church meeting (someone else was making a soup with meat), I kept thinking of butternut squash and I kept thinking of wild rice. I wasn’t sure how the two would come together, but I knew somehow it would work.

While this soup is naturally vegetarian and gluten-free for Meatless Mondays, it’s easily vegan (see notes to the sides of ingredients in recipe) or made with meat (cook’s notes.) Make it how you’d like. It’s good with or without half and half and, if you’d like a little smoother soup, purée a few cups and add them back into the broth at the end of the cooking time.

WILD RICE INFO:

Wild Rice is actually an acquatic grass and is the official state grain of Minnesota. Please buy Native-American grown, hand-harvested rice to support this important mid-west and Canadian industry. If it’s not available in your grocery, drive to Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, or Canada and buy some! It’s worth the trip. Or ask your grocer to carry it. Why not?  Otherwise, order on line.  

What Native-American rice growers say…

“Manoomin, or wild rice is a gift given to the Anishinaabek from the Creator, and is a centerpiece of the nutrition and sustenance for our community. In the earliest of teachings of Anishinaabeg history, there is a reference to wild rice, known as the food which grows upon the water, the food, the ancestors were told to find, then we would know when to end our migration to the west. It is this profound and historic relationship which is remembered in the wild rice harvest on the White Earth and other reservations-a food which is uniquely ours, and a food, which is used in our daily lives, our ceremonies, and our thanksgiving feasts.”  From www.saveourwildrice.com.

Wild rice is a nutritional bonanza:

Wild rice is also a great source of folate, manganese, zinc, and iron, which is great for gluten-free eaters and grain-free eaters who don’t get those nutrients in typical grains like oats, rye, wheat, and other types of grains like brown rice.

onegreenplanet.org

IMG_1962above: soup with half and half Continue reading “Butternut Squash-Wild Rice Soup”

Thanksgiving: Gluten-Free and Vegan–A Buffet for 6 – 8

Thanksgiving: Gluten-Free and Vegan–A Buffet for 6 – 8

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(above:  Butternut Squash Lasagna–G-F and Vegan–scroll down for recipe)

A small buffet for six or eight is great fun –so few dishes!– and here’s one that will go down well with gluten eating carnivores as well as those who follow gluten-free and vegan lifestyles.  Pass out recipes — or have folks find their own — and make it an easy day for the host.

While I am neither vegan nor on a gluten-free diet, I do often eat Vegan Before Six a la Mark Bittman and boast a daughter-in-law who for the most part eats gluten-free. The idea of a holiday menu that suits both profiles was a challenge I simply had to take because whenever I publish a recipe that is both gluten-free and vegan, I seem to have a really good number of new folks interested.  That means I’m interested, too.

So let me know what you think if you try the recipes or maybe just take one or two to a traditional Thanksgiving dinner so that you can eat without wondering whether or not there’s __________ in that casserole.  Naturally many of the recipes can be used for ONLY vegan meals or ONLY gluten-free meals and you can adjust those ingredients accordingly.  For instance, if you’re not a vegan, you might add grated Parmesan cheese to the lasagna or if you’re not gluten-free, you might use traditional lasagna noodles.  And so on.   Now on to the meal I so hope you enjoy…………

While the meal gets organized, start with music (here’s a prior Thanksgiving’s music post of mine), sparkling wine (Gruet from New Mexico is inexpensive and charming; please do drink American wines for Thanksgiving) and a gorgeous platter of vegetables, olives, dips, crackers (try Mary’s Gone Crackers.) Check wine and any other purchased food labels; most wines will be fine gluten-free options, but you might want to read up on that right HERE. Don’t eat too much because hopefully someone’s made one of my favorite soups for the very first course…

Go around the table (or the living room seats–wherever) and let each guest offer something for which they’re thankful if you’re not in the habit of grace before meals. Offer a toast to those healthy thoughts….thanksgiving is good for the body and soul.

FIRST COURSE SOUPS   Wine: Oregon or Washington Riesling (not too sweet…)

There are 3 soups from which to choose. I love them all. Choose which best suits your other menu choices.

Naturally you might have some bread with these soups if someone’s brought some….Bread sticks or crackers would be nice, too–and not so filling.

Spicy Cream of Pumpkin Soup with Peanuts — 6 first course servings

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced*
  • 1 medium red onion, minced
  • 1 each:  celery stalk and carrot, minced
  • 4 fresh sage leaves, minced or 1 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • Hot sauce to taste
  • 2 cups pureed pumpkin (15-ounce can will work)
  • 4 cups gluten-free vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup rice milk
  • 1/2 cup chopped peanuts

Heat the oil and garlic for one minute over medium-low heat.  Add vegetables, herbs, salt and pepper; season with 3 drops of hot sauce.  Raise heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender — about 10 minutes. Add pumpkin and broth; bring to boil.  Lower to simmer and cook another 10 or 15 minutes.

Stir in milk and heat through. Optional: purée using an immersion blender or carefully in batches in the blender or food processor.  Taste; adjust seasonings.  Serve hot garnished with peanuts.

*If you have  a food processor, use it to mince all of the vegetables at once. Continue reading “Thanksgiving: Gluten-Free and Vegan–A Buffet for 6 – 8”