Category Archives: foodie freak flag flying

Foodie Friday! Summer (or anytime!) Pistou

Pistou is a French version of pesto but without pine nuts.  The pine nuts make traditional pesto somewhat expensive to prepare but this delicious recipe uses almonds which are far more affordable. 

Dr. D. made for me late in the summer when he harvested the yellow squash from his garden but the ingredients can be found any time of year to enjoy this amazing stew.  This recipe comes from one of our favorite cookbooks, Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health.

An actual picture of the actual stew!  So pretty!

Summer (or anytime!) Pistou

For the stew:

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 cup chopped red or yellow bell pepper (omitted)
2 cups green beans cut into 2-inch pieces
1 1/2 cup vegetable broth or water
4 cups chopped yellow summer squash
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 (15 ounce) cans red or white beans, undrained
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the almond-herb pesto:

1 cup toasted almonds
1 cup packed fresh basil
2 cups packed fresh parsley
2 cloves garlic
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 to 3 tablespoon water, optional

Make the stew:

In a large soup pot, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, and cook for about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and bell peppers, and cook for about 3 minutes. And the green beans and broth (or water) and simmer until crisp-tender, about 6 minutes. Add the yellow squash, tomatoes, and beans. Return to a simmer and cook until all of the vegetables are tender.

Make the Pesto:

Combine the almonds, basil, parsley, garlic, olive oil, salt, and lemon juice in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Process until smooth. Add water if you would like a thinner consistency (Dr. D. did this).

Serve the stew topped with a generous dollop of the pesto.

6 to 8 servings

Foodie Friday – Cream of Squash Soup

This soup comes from The Great Life Cookbook and is perfect for those fall potlucks or make a batch and freeze some for later.  Only four ingredients and deliciousness beyond belief!

I will admit it took some time to peel and chop the squash but I think it was worth it.  I did see some pre-peeled and chopped butternut squash in the produce section this week which would greatly help the next time I make this.

Just look at that creamy deliciousness!

Cream of Squash Soup

2 large butternut squashes (~14 cups)*
4 medium onions, chopped coarsely (~6 cups)
Water to almost cover squash (~2 quarts)
1 Tbs. sea salt
4-6 Tbs. brown rice syrup (optional but I used 1 Tbs and it was plenty)
1/2 bunch of parsley (optional)

  1. Peel squash, cut in half, remove seeds and chop into large 2-3″ cubes.
  2. Water saute onions in an 8-quart pot for 4-5 minutes; add squash, water and salt.
  3. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer; cover and cook until squash is soft, about 20-25 minutes.
  4. Carefully puree hot squash in a blender using just enough liquid to blend, possibly not using all the liquid (I used none of the liquid).  A slightly thick creamy texture is preferred.
  5. Add brown rice syrup, if needed.
  6. Garnish with parsley.

*I used one large and one medium and still needed to use half of another medium squash.  Mother Nature is never very consistent in how she allows vegetables to grow.