Category Archives: recipes

Recipe: Winter Squash and Chicken Stew w/ Indian Spices

This is what J made last Friday night, and we had enough for 2 more lunches. Very tasty, pretty easy. If you are not a fan of curries, or warm spices (as compared with ‘heat’ spices) then you may not enjoy this. The butternut squash completely breaks down, and the color ends up as an orangey-brown.

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 6 chicken thighs, skin removed
  • 1 1/3 cups chopped onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 cups 1-inch pieces peeled butternut or acorn squash
  • 2 cups 1-inch pieces peeled russet potatoes
  • 1 cup canned low-salt chicken broth

Heat 1 teaspoon oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Add to Dutch oven; sauté until brown on all sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer to plate.

Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in same pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté until golden, about 5 minutes. Add curry powder, cumin, and cinnamon; stir 1 minute. Return chicken to pot. Add squash, potatoes, broth and tomatoes. Cover and simmer 15 minutes. Uncover and simmer until chicken and potatoes are cooked through and liquid is slightly reduced, about 8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Absolutely a keeper.

Homemade Gifts: Pumpkin Butter

I enjoy making and giving (the giving more than the making, truth be told) homemade gifts every year. For one thing, it allows me to sidestep the consumeristic merry go round of the holiday season, for another, it allows me to give soemthing special to people I might normally be unable to express my appreciation for (like, my boss).

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Heaven in a Bowl: Lisa’s Winter Stew

A few weeks ago, I’d asked J. to pick up a mix of root veggies so we could have them with various upcoming meals. He got a couple of sweet potatoes, garnet yams, russet potatoes, yukon golds (about 1 lb) and a couple of butternut squash. The law of cooking being what it is in my household, we ate one butternut and just haven’t gotten to the rest.

(Yeah, I know “just haven’t gotten to it” is a very lame excuse. It’s only redeeming value is that it is also true.)

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It’s a writing weekend

Ideally this would be a writing weekend. But it’s also a mundane house project weekend. (We’re painting the bedroom again.)

* I owe T. the revised article for his latest anthology.
* The book now has a new title and the Intro has been running through my head for a few days, time to get that written out and a sample portion completed. Fortunately, Mercury Retrograde (May 26-June 19) has been a fruitful time for me to write in.
* I just received a pile of new books to review, and have several from my reviewers to post at FN.
* Jaguarmoon is back on track with the class, and I need to reach out to potential students to get their apps and share the relevant details with them all.
* I owe a friend a letter from February (damn, I am so bad at correspondence) and several friends from April. I owe my grandmothers long letters.

    Writing, writing, writing. I think I’m happy about it, but I also have the sense that this is a time when it will control me, which is frequently uncomfortable.

    Blueberry-Lemon Jam

    1 lemon peeled, seeded and finely chopped
    1  ½  pint frozen or fresh blueberries
    3 cups sugar
    1/2 cup water

    Place all ingredients in large sauce pan, bring to a boil, stirring constantly until blueberries pop and sugar dissolves.

    Boil gently, uncovered, stirring occasionally until thickened, about 30 min. Pour into hot sterilized jars. Process in boiling water bath for 10 min in 1/2 pt jars

    Yield: 1 ½ pints

    Note: I love making this as a gift for the holidays. In the years it doesn’t ‘jell’ I call it a sauce, and recommend that people use it on pancakes and ice cream.

    Stone Fruit Chutney

    4 apricots
    3 peaches
    2 nectarines
    4 plums

    ½ tsp cinnamon
    2 tsp garlic, minced
    2 tsp ginger, minced
    1 tsp salt
    ½ tsp white pepper
    ¼ cup cider vinegar

    Peel all fruit and cut into medium-sized chunks. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring frequently, until the fruit is tender, about 15 minutes.

    Lower heat, add spices, and heat for 1 minute.

    Boil over medium-high heat for about 45 minutes or until thick, stirring frequently.

    Ladle chutney into hot, sterilized, preserving jars, leaving a ½-inch headspace. Wipe rims clean. Seal according to manufacturer’s directions.

    Process for 15 minutes in a boiling water bath.

    Allow chutney to mature for at least one month before using.
    Yield: 6 ½ pint jars

    Note: This recipe is perfect for my friends who can’t have sugar. Served with meat (especially pork, but not fish — except salmon) or strong cheeses, this can be an elegant addition to a meal, or a condiment slathered on a sandwich.