Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Where You Taste The Love

Autumn Squash Soup

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This soup is so delicious and is a great way to ring in the fall season. I like to serve my Autumn Soup with a drizzle of *E.V.O.O,  Homemade Ciabatta Croutons, fresh chives, and roasted (Mexican pumpkin seeds) Pepitas.

It’s a nice way for your family and/or guests to customize their soup. There are a few steps in making this soup, but they are all really easy.

Mozzarella in Carrozza, which means carriage in Italian, is a type of fried cheese sandwich, in Italian cuisine, that’s super popular in the Campania region of Southern Italy. The perfect sandwich for dunking.

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Pumpkin Puree

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Chives (2)

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E.V.O.O.

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Equipment: 1 (10-cup) food processor, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, 1 (6-quart) heavy-bottom saucepot, 1 medium-size mixing bowl, 1 large mixing bowl

Note: The soup alone is gluten-free.

Ingredients:
2 large butternut squash, peeled and seeded, 1 1/2-inch dice
1/2 cup of olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons of Kosher salt, divided
1 tablespoon of freshly ground black pepper, divided

6 heaping cups of diced butternut squash, roasted
1 cup of onions, puréed (1 1/2 large onions, diced)
2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped and puréed
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground chipotle powder ( add more if you like more heat)
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 (15-ounce) can of pumpkin purée
1 1/2 quarts (6 cups) of chicken stock, unsalted
2 tablespoons of heavy cream
1/4 cup of chives, finely chopped for garnish
1/2 cup of Pepitas for garnish, roasted
Ciabatta croutons (optional)
*E.V.O.O. to drizzle over soup
Mozzarella grilled cheese sandwiches (optional)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425-degrees F.
Start by peeling and seeding the butternut squash. Dice into 1 1/2-inch size chunks. Spread them out onto 2 rimmed baking sheet pans in one even layer, Drizzle olive oil, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Using your hands, toss to coat. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes or until caramelized and fork-tender.

In a food processor add diced onions and garlic, pulse until puréed. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

In small batches, add the roasted squash to the food processor pulse until puréed. Transfer to a large mixing bowl. Repeat until all the squash has been processed.

In a saucepot over medium heat, heat olive oil, ground cumin, ground chipotle until the oil becomes fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the puréed onion mixture stir until coated with the spice mixture. Add Kosher salt and brown sugar, stir to combine. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes.

Next, add the puréed butternut squash and pumpkin to the pot, again, stir to combine.

Add the chicken stock to the pot, stir to combine. Once the soup comes up to a very low boil, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring frequently.

Next, add the heavy cream then give that a big stir. Turn the heat off and cover to keep warm.

Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
Soup’s ready! While it’s staying nice and warm, spread the Pepitas out in an even layer. Toast for 5 to 7 minutes or until you begin to smell their aroma. Chop fresh chives. Transfer both the Pepitas and chives to two small garnish bowls Serve with Homemade Ciabatta Croutons.

To serve, ladle my Autumn Soup into a porcelain serving bowl. Garnish with chives, Homemade Ciabatta Croutons, toasted Pepitas, and finally a drizzle of *E.V.O.O.

*E.V.O.O. is an acronym for extra virgin olive oil.

Homemade Ciabatta Croutons

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Slow-Cooked Southern-Style Green Beans

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French-style green beans, better known as Haricots Verts, are a very thin variety and the perfect choice for my Slow-Cooked Southern-Style Green Beans. I’ve made green beans with tomatoes many times and over the years, adding this and leaving out that, but now I’ve tweaked this recipe and it’s perfect. I think it’s my choice of spices and aromatics that puts a unique twist on these Slow Cooked Southern Style Green Beans and gives it complexity and depth of flavor.

I love cumin because of its grassy and earthy flavor so I decided to add this spice to my recipe. It made a HUGE difference!

Onions

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Stuffing (2)

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Paprika

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Diced Fire Roasted Tomatoes

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 1 (6-quart) saucepot, 2 large mixing bowls, spider

Ingredients:
2 pounds of French-style green beans (*Haricots Verts)
2 tablespoons of grapeseed oil (substitute any neutral oil)
1 sweet onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (15-ounce) can of diced fire-roasted tomatoes and their juice
1 1/2 cups of water
1 tablespoon of ground cumin
1 teaspoon of sweet paprika
1 tablespoon of dried oregano
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper

Directions:
Start by going through the beans and cutting off the root ends. In a pot of boiling salted water *blanch the beans for 1 to 2 minutes, then immediately transfer to an ice bath. This sets the beautiful green color. Transfer the green beans to a plate lined with a paper towel to drain any excess water. Pat dry with a kitchen towel and place into a large bowl.

In a saucepot over medium heat add grapeseed oil. To that, add ground cumin allowing the spice to melt into the oil. This will give the cumin a chance to *bloom. Once you can smell the aroma from the cumin add the diced onions and sweet paprika. Cook and stir for 2 to 3 minutes until onions have softened and become translucent.

Next, add the diced green bell pepper, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper. Sitrring ocassionally, cook for another 3 to 5 minutes. Next, into the pot, the dried oregano. Rub the oregano through your fingers to release its flavor as you drop it into the pot. Finally, add the minced garlic, stir to combine.

Add the *blanched green beans, can of diced fire-roasted tomatoes along with the juice, and water. Stir all the ingredients together while bringing the green beans up to a boil. Turn down to a simmer cooking uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and cover until ready to serve. Enjoy my Slow-Cooked Southern-Style Green Beans with your next meal. Serve hot.

*Blanch: Blanching is a cooking process wherein a food, usually fruit or vegetable, is scalded in boiling water. Removed after a brief, timed interval and finally plunged into iced water (shocking or refreshing) to halt the cooking process.

*Bloom: The process of gently frying spices in oil. It’s a quick way to deepen their flavor. Cook just until the spices smell nice and toasty; any longer and you risk burning them.

*Haricots Verts: Usually known as French beans are a thinner and shorter variety.

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Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash

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My Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash is a great substitute for mash potatoes. By roasting the cauliflower and the garlic intensifies the depth of flavor in this dish. I’ve also added spices that are both earthy and smokey in flavor. I’m going out on a limb here by saying this dish is life-changing!

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Heavy Cream

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Chives (2)

Chives (2)

Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash (2)

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time For Garlic: 35 to 40 minutes
Cook Time For Cauliflower: 25 to 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Equipment: 1 (10 cup) food processor, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans, chef’s knife, 1 (1-quart) saucepot

Ingredients For Roasted Cauliflower Mash:
1 to 2 heads of cauliflower (2-pounds) broken into florets (about 8 cups)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 whole head of garlic, roasted
1 tablespoon of ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon of ground coriander
2 tablespoons of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated
1 teaspoon smoked paprika, extra for garnish
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup of heavy cream, room temperature
2 tablespoons of butter, unsalted and melted
Fresh chives for garnish

Directions For Roasted Garlic:
Preheat oven to 400-degrees F.
Cut a head of garlic lengthwise, leaving the head intact with all the cloves connected. Season with 1 teaspoon of  Kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper. Drizzle each half with 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Wrap each half in foil and place onto a rimmed baking sheet. Place into the oven on the top rack. Roast for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, begin checking the garlic. The garlic is done if the center clove is completely soft when pierced with a paring knife.

Note: For a deeper golden brown and more caramelized garlic flavor extend the roasting time.

While garlic is roasting start prepping the cauliflower.

Directions For Roasted Cauliflower:
Adjust oven temperature to 450-degrees F.
Cut the core out and break up the cauliflower into large florets. Spread them out onto two baking sheet pans in one even layer. Sprinkle on half (1/2) of the ground cumin, the remaining Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper, and the remaining with olive oil. Toss the cauliflower florets all around with your hands to make sure all they’re all really well coated.

Remove the garlic from the oven. Allow to cool down for 10 minutes. Carefully open the hot foil packet allowing the garlic to cool down enough to handle.

Place the cauliflower in the center position of the oven, roast for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden and tender. Double-check by taking a fork and pricking the florets to see if they”re nice and tender. If they need a few more minutes, leave them in but keep your eye on them.

In a food processor fitted with the metal blade add the roasted cauliflower florets. Squeeze the softened roasted garlic into the processor. Add the remaining ground cumin, ground coriander, smoked paprika, grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese,  melted butter, and heavy cream. Blend until smooth and mashed potato-like. Give the cauliflower mash a taste, if needed season with Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper.

To serve, spoon the Roasted Garlic Cauliflower Mash into a porcelain serving bowl. Garnish with a sprinkling of smoked paprika and finely chopped fresh chives.

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