Friday, November 20, 2015

Healthy Friday and Big Food News

For all you foodies, this is big news- Christopher Kimball, whose slightly geeky, bespectacled and bow-tied presence personified Cook’s Illustrated magazine and its "America's Test Kitchen" show, is out at the company he helped found. 
I was shocked when I read the news! Apparently there was a contract disagreement. Kimball is basically the face of the magazine brand and show. The magazine is one of my favorite food subscriptions. 
Read more =rss

Stuffing Alternatives

Wild Rice and Roasted Butternut Squash with Cranberries
recipe serves: 4-6
Cook's notes: This side dish is a perfect accompaniment to a holiday meal. Roasted butternut squash adds more nutrition and flavor to the dish. The squash and wild rice can be prepared early in the day before the guests arrive. Serve both at room temperature.  The dressing can be made ahead and refrigerated until needed.

  • mixed greens
  • 1-1/2 cups wild rice, rinsed
  • 3 cups butternut squash, cubed
  • 1 TB. olive oil and 1 TB. balsamic vinegar
  • 3 cups chicken stock and 3 cups water 
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 3/4 cup toasted pecans or walnuts, coarsely chopped. optional item
  • 2 T. chopped fresh Italian parsley or 1 TB. dried parsley
  • 2 Tb. olive oil or Blood Orange Olive Oil 
Citrus Dressing:
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin and 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1 TB. minced fresh ginger or 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 3 TB.honey
  • 1/3 cup olive oil or Blood Orange Olive Oil
  • In a blender combine all dressing ingredients, add salt and pepper to taste, set aside.
  • Cook wild rice in chicken broth and water for 45 minutes or until rice is tender, drain and rinse.
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spread butternut squash cubes on a parchment lined baking sheet. Drizzle with a little balsamic vinegar and olive oil. Roast until tender about 20 minutes.    
  • Sauté garlic and chopped onions in 2 TB. olive oil for 4-6 minutes until onions are translucent. Reduce heat and continue to cook onions until slightly caramelized.
  • Add pecans or walnuts to sauté pan and cook over medium heat until toasted - watch closely so they don't burn! About 1 minutes. 
  • In a serving bowl combine the cooked rice, onions/garlic, chopped parsley, dried cranberries and roasted butternut squash cubes. 
  • Add 1/3 cup of the citrus dressing to wild rice mixture. Continue adding dressing until dish is just moistened. 
  • Wild rice dish can be served over mixed greens 
  • Another dish option is to omit toasted nuts, add in cashews with sliced water chestnuts.
Maple Glazed Sweet Potatoes
Cook's notes:Recipe serves 4-6 and is adapted from  
  • 1-1/2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/3-inch rounds
  • 2-1/2 tsp. kosher salt, divided 
  • 6 TB. real maple syrup
  • 6 TB. white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 1/2 TB. butter
  • 3/8 tsp. black pepper 
  • 2 TB. fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme or marjoram
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.  
  • Combine syrup and vinegar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil; simmer 4 minutes or until slightly thickened and syrupy. Remove from heat; whisk in butter and pepper. Reserve 1-1/2 TB. syrup mixture. 
  • In a mixing bowl coat diced sweet potaoes with syrup mixture.
  • Spread evenly on baking sheet. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt, parsley and thyme or marjoram. 
  • Roast 25 minutes or until fork tender. Drizzle with remaining syrup mixture to serve. 

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