Vegetables

Butternut Squash Curry with Apples and Basil

Butternut Squash Curry with Apples and Basil from dontmissdairy.com

This recipe has quickly become one of my fall favorites.  What’s more fall than squash? Add apples and spices and you have the ultimate fall inspired meal.

I first tried squash curry at the annual Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival. It was slathered over a steaming baked potato and was oh so amazing. I had it again this year and couldn’t wait to make it myself at home.

Butternut Squash Curry with Apples and Basil from dontmissdairy.com

Eric and I went this October, of course. It was our 5th Pumpkin Festival! Neither of us can believe we’ve lived in California this long. It’s always the same routine:

We start out bright and early to get in line for pumpkin pancakes, homemade by the kids at Half Moon Bay High School. They are only served from 7-10am and the line gets long, so you must get there early.

After stuffing ourselves full of pancakes and sausage, we walk around and view the art, which always includes glass pumpkins. Main Street gets crowded fast, so we like to accomplish this as soon as possible.

This year they offered some new, tempting drinks. We had jack-o-tinis along with the typical pumpkin ale brewed by Half Moon Bay Brewery specifically for this festival.

And no pumpkin festival would be complete without seeing the giant pumpkins. This year’s winner weighed in at a record 2,058 pounds.

Runner Up Pumpkins from Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival dontmissdairy.com

Before we head home along the winding mountain roads, we always stop at  Bob’s Pumpkin Patch to get a couple of pumpkins to carve for Halloween. 

It’s a great annual tradition and I hope you get to check it out one day! Just remember to go early for the best experience. I mean like get-there-by-7am-early.  Trust me.

Bob's Pumpkin Patch Half Moon Bay, California from dontmissdairy.com

The first time I made this curry it was absolutely delicious. The second time I made it I decided it needed apples. There’s just something about the combination of squash and spices that goes so well with sweet apples. That being said, you can make this dish with or without them. Just don’t forget the wine!

Certainly the hardest part about this recipe is cutting the squash. It is helpful if you microwave the whole squash for a few minutes. It softens it up a bit. Be very careful.

I hope you enjoy this fall inspired meal. Please share on Instagram with #dontmissdairy if you make it!

Butternut Squash Curry with Apples and Basil from dontmissdairy.com

Butternut Squash Curry with Apples and Basil
Serves 6
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Ingredients
  1. 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed, and cubed
  2. 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts or 1 package firm tofu, cubed
  3. 1 large apple (or two small apples), peeled, cored, and chopped
  4. 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  5. 1 tablespoon garlic infused oil (optional)
  6. 3 tablespoons curry powder
  7. 1 can full fat coconut milk
  8. 1/2 cup water
  9. 1/4 cup white wine
  10. 1/4 teaspoon cardamon
  11. 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  12. 1 large cinnamon stick
  13. fresh basil
Instructions
  1. After peeling your squash, carefully and patiently remove the ends and cut in half with a large, sharp knife. Scoop the seeds and set aside.* Chop squash into bite size cubes. Also prep chicken (or tofu) and apples before cooking.
  2. Heat olive and garlic oil in a large saucepan or pot over medium heat. If using chicken, add the chicken to the pan and sear 1-2 minutes, until no longer pink on each side. If using tofu, add the tofu after adding liquid.
  3. Add butternut squash to pan, stirring to combine, and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Add white wine, curry powder, cardamon, sea salt and cook for up to one minute.
  5. Slowly pour in coconut milk, stirring to combine. Add apples and cinnamon stick. Add water, stirring well. May add more or less water depending on desired thinness. Cover and reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Curry will be done when squash is soft. Add basil last, cooking for up to 1 minute only. Remove from heat. Salt to taste. Serve over your favorite rice.
Notes
  1. *Rinse, dry and roast butternut squash seeds in olive oil and sea salt at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for ten minutes. They make a great snack or garnish for your curry.
don't miss dairy http://dontmissdairy.com/
Butternut Squash Curry with Apples and Basil from dontmissdairy.com

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Simple Quinoa Egg Bake

Simple Quinoa Egg Bake from dontmissdairy.com.

Say hello to one easy and healthy breakfast bake!

I meant to get this posted weeks ago, but I’ve been behind on everything due to some health issues.

Basically, I’ve been having problems falling asleep…BIG time. I am taking steps to figure out the problem, but pretty much all aspects of my life will suffer for a time while I lie low and recover. Unfortunately, this is not something that will linger for a few weeks and pass, like a cold.

Needless to say, the overachieving lifestyle does not work for me right now.  And not getting sleep has been affecting my desire to cook in general and certainly my blogging. I’ve been struggling with it for about a month, and while the problem is better, I am still working to get back to normal. So I do apologize for my infrequent posts.

I am also more motivated to make meals healthier than ever, so expect a healthy menu! I am avoiding alcohol, wheat, and sugar, and anything else that might make my hormone levels spike and keep me up at night. Here’s a recipe that combines all my needs into one! It’s a hearty and simple breakfast bake that’s dairy-free and gluten-free.

Simple Quinoa Egg Bake from dontmissdairy.com.
This quinoa egg bake is very much like a quiche, but with a healthier crust–it’s the quinoa, of course! The idea of this recipe is that the veggies are supposed to float towards the top while the quinoa sinks to the bottom. Make sure to chop your veggies finely to achieve this. 

Once you pour the egg mixture into the baking dish, you will start to see the quinoa sinking to the bottom. Shake the dish a little bit to help the process along. Some quinoa will probably sit on top of the veggies. Using a spoon, lightly push that quinoa back into the egg mixture. It’s okay if all the quinoa doesn’t get to the bottom.

You might find that the quinoa has sunk to one side. Just manipulate it by stirring some back to the other side of the dish and letting it sink to get an even crust.

This recipe is very versatile. You can omit the onions and peppers and only use spinach, or you can add finely chopped sausage or bacon and shredded potatoes. Another idea would be to drop in dollops of goat cheese along with tomato and basil (make sure you squeeze the liquid out of your tomatoes). You can adjust the seasonings as well to fit your needs. Try sage and rosemary in place of the granulated garlic. Vegan cheese would also be a great addition to this dish, although I recommend reducing the salt to half a teaspoon if you will be using a high salt content cheese.

This Quinoa Egg Bake showcases the flavor of your eggs. Fresh, great tasting eggs will greatly add to the overall flavor. I used Egglands Best, but if you can afford it, organic pastured eggs add so much more yum.

I found this recipe on the Whole Foods website, tried it dairy-free, and loved it so much I decided to make it my own. It’s easy to make, super healthy, and high in protein. I just love how you throw everything in, shake, and bake! Simple!

Simple Quinoa Egg Bake
Serves 6
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
50 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 tablespoon vegan butter*
  2. 8 large eggs
  3. 1 1/4 cup sweetened almond milk**
  4. 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
  5. 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  6. 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  7. 3/4 teaspoon black pepper
  8. 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  9. 1/4 yellow onion, finely chopped
  10. 1/4 bell pepper, finely chopped
  11. 2 cups packed baby spinach, roughly chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Generously butter the bottom and sides of an 8x8 baking dish (you may want to use a nonstick pan for easy removal, but is not necessary). Sprinkle a small amount of black pepper, sea salt, and granulated garlic on the bottom of the dish. This will aid in flavoring the crust; set aside.
  2. Rinse your quinoa if the packaging calls for it.***In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, almond milk, garlic, thyme, black pepper, sea salt, and quinoa.
  3. Stir in chopped spinach, onion, and pepper, then pour the mixture into the buttered baking dish.
  4. Shake the dish slightly to make sure all quinoa has sunk to the bottom in an even layer. If you are using a glass dish you will be able to see it and make adjustments. Cover tightly with foil and bake until just set, about 50-55 minutes. Let cool for five minutes before serving.
Notes
  1. *I use Earth Balance Buttery Spread.
  2. **I use Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Original.
  3. ***I buy pre-rinsed quinoa.
Adapted from Quinoa Egg Bake with Garlic and Thyme from Whole Foods Market
don't miss dairy http://dontmissdairy.com/

Simple Quinoa Egg Bake from dontmissdairy.com.

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Creamy Potato Soup with Almond Milk

Creamy Potato Soup with Almond Milk from dontmissdairy.com
What better time to make potato soup than St. Patrick’s Day weekend?

I just love having an excuse to make something creamy and delicious.

Potatoes are naturally creamy when boiled and mashed, so adding dairy is just a creamy bonus. Add light tasting and sweetened almond milk instead for a cream of potato soup that is out of this world!

This simple soup has the same chowder-like texture and color of a dairy potato soup, plus a savory taste that rivals the dairy version. You won’t be able to tell there’s almond milk in it. Trust me.

Campbell’s Cream of Potato used to be my favorite lunch time soup as a kid. My mom would buy it just for me and make it on the stove top with regular milk. And if a restaurant was serving potato soup, you better believe I was ordering it. Sadly, I haven’t had it in a long time because of my lactose intolerance. 

It is possible to find delicious creamy soups at the local grocery store that are dairy free. Safeway carries Pacific brand soups, some of which are dairy free, like their Cashew Carrot Ginger Soup and their Butternut Squash Soup, which is made with soy milk. I’m still waiting for stores to sell almond milk based cream soups…maybe Pacific will take it on? I will definitely buy it! Until then, it’s not much work to make this recipe.

The best part about this creamy potato soup? No blender or food processor required! I adapted this recipe from “Unbelievably Easy Potato Soup” on food.com. 
Creamy Potato Soup with Almond Milk from dontmissdairy.com

Creamy Potato Soup with Almond Milk
Serves 4
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Total Time
30 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 tablespoons vegan butter
  2. 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
  3. 1 teaspoon sea salt
  4. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  5. 4 russet potatoes, peeled and diced
  6. 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  7. Unsalted chicken or vegetable stock to cover vegetables (about 1 cup)
  8. 2 1/2- 3 cups of almond milk* (sweetened but unflavored)
Instructions
  1. In a large stock pot, melt vegan butter over medium heat. Add onions, sea salt, and pepper and cook for two minutes.
  2. Add diced potatoes and garlic to pot and cook for 1 minute more.
  3. Pour unsalted chicken stock over vegetables until just covered and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 25 minutes.
  4. Lightly crush the potatoes with potato masher or fork (don't over mash).
  5. Stir in 2 1/2 cups or more almond milk until desired consistency. Start with 1 cup of milk, then add a second cup. Thin out the soup by adding 1/2 a cup at a time.
  6. Add salt and pepper to taste and top with fresh chives or parsley.
Notes
  1. *I used Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almond Milk.
Adapted from Unbelievably Easy Potato Soup from food.com
don't miss dairy http://dontmissdairy.com/

Creamy Potato Soup with Almond Milk from dontmissdairy.com

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