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Publication: I'm Not Martha
Butternut Squash and Chestnut Soup

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         I'M NOT MARTHA - Tuesday, November 13, 2007
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Help yourself to some great self-help videos on: evtv1.com
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Hi! I'm Lizzy!!  and I'm not Martha!!!


Hey there Lizzy girl...

So you're doing duck for Thanksgiving.  Nice, very nice. 
But what about the rest?  What goes with the thankful 
quackers???

What a nice question....

For starters, a lovely butternut squash soup, Les Ducks, 
dressing with gravy, roasted acorn squash stuffed with 
something that I haven't decided yet, yam casserole, 
roasted beet salad, and peas...gloriously simple but proud 
peas!  For dessert my pumpkin cake with eggnog icing has 
been requested.

Many people are afraid of squash.  Thick skinned and fore-
boding. But for me squash is king.  I can do so much with 
it. Butternut is one of my favorites.  I had friends over 
from England one year for Thanksgiving and they had never 
heard of nor tasted butternut squash.

Butternut squash has a yellowish-tan skin and a beautiful, 
bright orange flesh. When cooked, its flavor is sweet and 
rich, and tastes somewhat similar to sweet potatoes. 
Butternut squash tends to be one of the more common winter 
squashes, and makes for excellent cooking not only because 
of its fabulous flavor, but also because its skin tends to 
be a little easier to cut through than other winter squashes. 
It's generally vaguely pear-shaped – fat at the bottom and  
skinnier at the top – although sometimes you’ll find ones 
that are much more cylindrical in form. As for size, butter-
nut squash generally range from 8" or so long to a foot, and 
weigh anywhere from one pound to four.

Choose a squash that feels heavy for its size, with blemish-
free skin, and no soft, moldy spots. Thanks to its thick 
skin, butternut squash keeps for a good long time (up to a 
month) when kept in a cool, dark place. Don't store squash 
in the refrigerator, as the cold temperatures will actually 
cause the squash to go bad much more quickly.

Unlike summer squash, the peel of winter squashes is too 
tough for eating, even when cooked. To peel a butternut 
squash, cut off the ends of the squash. (You'll need a good 
heavy chef's knife to cut a butternut squash). Then cut 
each section in half. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and 
fibrous innards from the bulbous bottom ends and discard. 
You can use a vegetable peeler to remove the peel.

P.S. If you're interested we now have a forum. You can post 
comments on this and recent issues at... Not Martha forum


BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND CHESTNUT SOUP

1 1/2 T vegetable oil
2 stalks celery, chopped coarse
1 med onion, peeled and chopped
1 C peeled and cooked fresh chestnuts (about 20)
   	or 1 C canned unsweetened chestnuts
1 1/4 C cooked and pureed fresh butternut squash
	or 1-10 oz. package frozen squash, defrosted]
1 T minced fresh ginger root
2 t fresh thyme leaves
1 1/2 t ground mace
2 1/2 C chicken stock
3 T bourbon
salt to taste
white pepper to taste
1 1/2 T minced crystallized ginger
2/3 C sour cream

In a medium heavy casserole dish heat oil over medium heat. 
Stir in the celery and onion and saute until translucent 
and soft, about 8-10 minutes.  Add chestnuts, squash, 
ginger root, thyme and mace and stir.

Scrape the mixture into a bowl of a food processor fitted 
with a steel blade and process until completely smooth. 
Return the puree to the pan and stir in the stock and bour-
bon.  Bring soup just to the boil over high heat.  Reduce 
heat immediately and simmer for 7 minutes.

Meanwhile in a small bowl, combine the crystallized ginger 
with the sour cream.

Ladle soup into individual bowls.  Just before serving spoon 
on a generous dollop of the ginger sour cream mixture.

Serves 4.


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POMEGRANATE, BEET AND BLOOD ORANGE SALAD

Bon Appetit  November 2003

If blood oranges are unavailable, simply use the sweetest 
oranges you can find.

Makes 4 first-course servings.

4 medium beets
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup blood orange juice (from about 1 blood orange)
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses*
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
3 blood oranges, peeled, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
1 cup pomegranate seeds (from one 11-ounce pomegranate)

Preheat oven to 400°F. Place beets in roasting pan and toss 
with 1 tablespoon oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon 
pepper. Add 1/4 cup water. Cover pan with foil; roast beets 
until knife easily pierces center, about 50 minutes. Cool. 
Peel beets and cut into 1/3-inch-thick wedges.

Whisk orange juice, pomegranate molasses, vinegar, and 
remaining 2 tablespoons oil in large bowl to blend. Season 
vinaigrette with salt and pepper.

Place onion in small bowl; cover with cold water. Soak onion 
1 minute, drain, and squeeze dry in kitchen towel. Add beets, 
onion, orange slices, and pomegranate seeds to vinaigrette 
in bowl; toss. Season salad with salt and pepper.

*A thick pomegranate syrup available at Middle Eastern 
markets, some supermarkets, and by mail from Adriana's 
Caravan (adrianascaravan.com).

I get so into the recipes that I almost drool.  I just adore 
Thanksgiving.  All food, friends, and no presents.  The best!

Lizzy

Questions...Comments...? email Lizzy


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