Curried Butternut Squash Soup paired with Apple, Caramelized Onion and Sage Grilled Cheese

Curried Butternut Squash Soup paired with Apple, Caramelized Onion and Sage Grilled Cheese

The use of yellow curry and chili powder adds just a subtle kick of flavor to this creamy, autumn soup, while still using the traditional butternut squash soup seasonings of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. Pairing it with a smoked gouda and sage derby grilled cheese, sandwiched together with caramelized onions, red apple (sliced paper thin) and baby kale on a sweet, cinnamon bread, makes for the PERFECT combination of fall flavors.

Also, there’s no need to use a food processor for this soup, like most butternut squash soup recipes call for. I’ve found that mashing the butternut squash into the pot after it’s been roasted gives it the best consistency. It felt like eating adult baby food when I once tried blending it in the food processor, and no one wants that.

I used a very small butternut squash for this recipe that made 4 servings.

What you will need:
1 small butternut squash
2c onion soup broth
2 1/2 oz coconut milk
1/3 c yellow curry sauce (my favorite is the one from Trader Joe’s)
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp chili powder
a pinch of nutmeg
a pinch of clove
Coconut Greek yogurt to garnish

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the butternut squash on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes or until tender. Remove the seeds and discard. In a pot over medium heat, add the onion soup broth, yellow curry sauce and butternut squash. Mash the squash into the pot with a spoon and add your cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, coconut milk and butter. Serve garnished with coconut Greek yogurt.

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Now, to make this delicious, savory grilled cheese, you will need sage derby cheese, smoked gouda, thinly sliced red apple, caramelized onions, and baby kale, all sandwiched between two slices of sweet cinnamon bread. Grill in a pan with butter and serve with curried butternut squash soup.

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Deviled Eggs with Avocado- The Best Deviled Eggs You’ll Ever Eat

Deviled Eggs with Avocado- The Best Deviled Eggs You'll Ever Eat

I’ve never made deviled eggs before, and I have to say, these are the best damn deviled eggs I’ve ever had in my life. Adding avocado into the mix adds a delightful flavor, and gives you a little extra avocado and yolk mix to spread on sandwiches. So delicious!
This recipes makes 12 deviled eggs.

What you will need:
a food processor
6 eggs
1 avocado
a couple of slices of red onion and a few slivers to garnish
1 small garlic clove
1/8 c mayonnaise
1 tsp mustard powder
fresh dill, to taste (leave some for garnish)
juice of 1/2 a lemon
salt, to taste

First, gently add eggs to pot and cover with water. Bring the water to a boil, cover with a lid and remove from heat. Let sit for 12-15 minutes. Drain and move eggs to a bowl filled with ice cold water. This well help separate the egg from its shell and make it easier to peel. Once they’ve cooled, peel the eggs and run under cool water to make sure all the pieces of the shell are removed. With a sharp knife, gently cut the eggs length wise and remove the yolk. Place the yolk and all other ingredients, aside from your garnishes, in the food processor and blend until creamy. Scoop mixture into a plastic bag with the tip cut off and squeeze into the egg white halves. Garnish with dill and onion.

Most likely, you will have left over avocado and egg yolk mix, and that’s fine. It makes a perfect spread for sandwiches. Just slice some fresh cucumber and tomato, add some fresh basil, and you have a full meal.

Grilled Pineapple and Portobello Mushroom Sandwich with Fresh Avocado Spread and Kale

Grilled Pineapple and Portobello Mushroom Sandwich

This vegetarian sandwich combines the perfect mix of sweet and savory, with the use of grilled, sweet pineapple and grilled, savory portobello mushrooms. This might just be my new favorite sandwich ever.

What you will need:
a George Forman grill
pineapple, sliced about 1/3 inch thick
portobello mushroom
cheddar cheese
avocado
kale
bread (I used 7 grain sprouted bread)
a little bit of butter for grilling the portobello mushroom

On a heated, non-greased, George Forman grill, take your pineapple slice and place it on the grill for 2-3 minutes. Remove it and use butter to grease the grill. Then, place your portobello mushroom on the grill for about 4-5 minutes. Meanwhile, toast your bread. Once the mushroom is done cooking, arrange it on the bottom half of the bread, then layer cheddar cheese and pineapple on top of it. Use the avocado as a spread and spread it across the top half of the bread and place kale on top as your lettuce. Serve with fries, chips or tomato soup.

Side note: if you don’t have a George Forman grill, you can make this on your stove top in a skillet.  Just cook your pineapple on medium heat for 2-3 minutes on each side, and cook your mushrooms on medium heat for 4-5 minutes on each side.

Mini Shiitake Mushroom and Black Bean Chipotle Hummus Sliders

Mini Shiitake Mushroom and Black Bean Chipotle Hummus Sliders

If you made yesterday’s spicy black bean chipotle hummus, you might be wondering what to do with the leftovers (if there are any!). Here’s a simple, quick and delicious gourmet vegan dish you can make in under 10 minutes.
With pita, I’ll keep it in the freezer and when I’m ready to use it, I’ll use tongs to toast it over an open flame on my stove top. Otherwise, I’d forget I even had it and let it all go stale (it happens too often).

What you will need:
shiitake mushrooms
mini pita rounds
spicy black bean chipotle hummus
red onion
cucumber
kale (i used red kale because it’s so darn pretty)
earth balance buttery spread for sauteing (or olive oil)

Clean and remove stems from shiitake mushrooms. In medium size pan, heat earth balance on a medium/low heat and add shiitake mushrooms. Cook for about 8 minutes, flipping them halfway through. Toast pita on the stove top and spread the chipotle black bean hummus on it, then layer the shiitake mushrooms, red onion, kale and cucumber on top. Great to share with friends or have as a meal all to yourself.