Wild Rice with Butternut Squash, Leeks, and Corn


1 1/2 cups wild rice (about 9 ounces)

2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt

3 cups peeled cubed butternut squash (from 11/2-pound squash)

5-6 cloves garlic, peeled

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 1/2 cups finely chopped leeks (white part only)

1 1/2 cups frozen white corn kernels, thawed

1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley


Preheat oven to 350°F. Oil rimmed baking sheet. Toss squash cubes, garlic and 2 tablespoons oil in a 9 by 13 baking pan.  Roast until squash begins to brown around the edges, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes.


While squash is baking, rinse rice in strainer under cold water; drain. Bring 6 cups water and 2 teaspoons coarse salt to boil in large saucepan. Add rice; bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer uncovered until rice grains begin to split and are tender but still slightly chewy, about 45 minutes. Drain.


Heat remaining tablespoon of oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.  Add leeks and 3/4 cup water; simmer until leeks are tender, about 7 minutes. Fish out garlic cloves from squash and smash them into the leek liquid with the back of your spoon against the side of the pan.  Stir.  Add corn; simmer 2 minutes longer. Add rice and butternut squash; simmer until heated through and liquid is absorbed, about 4 minutes. Stir in parsley.  Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl and serve.


(The rice and squash may be cooked ahead of time and refrigerated overnight.  It makes sense to roast a double batch of squash and then use the extra to make butternut squash soup.)


Adapted from a recipe by Nancy Oakes and Pamela Mazzola, from Bon Appetit, Nov 2008.


Baking Day Chicken


Another recipe inspired by Lynne Rossetto Kasper, the queen of roasting.   Despite the long-ish list of ingredients, this comes together quickly.  It is visually stunning when served straight from the oven in its baking dish.   The vegetables meld together during roasting to create a chunky, yet meltingly soft sauce that is wonderful served over rotini or fusilli.

1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley (leaves only)

1 6-inch branch of fresh rosemary, needles removed from stem

8 large fresh sage leaves

8 large fresh basil leaves

1 leaf of fresh chard or kale, stem removed

8 large cloves garlic

1 medium red onion, chopped

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 teaspoon kosher salt

few grinds of black pepper

3 bone-in chicken breasts, skin and fat removed

2 medium sweet red peppers

2 medium ripe tomatoes (or 1 can diced tomatoes, drained)

1 cup safe chicken broth

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Mince together the parsley, rosemary, sage, basil, garlic, and onion. Mix in the salt and olive oil.  Rub mixture over the chicken breasts and place in a 9 x 13 or similar sized baking dish.  Set aside.

Core and roughly chop the red peppers and tomatoes.  Tuck them into the pan around the chicken pieces.

Roast for 30 minutes, then pour 1/2 cup broth into pan.  Turn the chicken and stir the vegetables.  Return to oven and roast for another 30 minutes.  Turn chicken again, and spoon some of the vegetables onto them.  Moisten vegetables with broth, adding only enough to prevent burning (about 1/4 inch in bottom of pan is enough).   Roast for another 10 – 15 minutes, until chicken reads 165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.

Serve hot over brown rice pasta — preferably a type that has enough crannies to catch the rich sauce.

Sweet Potato, Lime, and Cilantro Vichyssoise


Brilliantly orange and velvety smooth, tart and sweet with a hint of smoky spice, this is a stunning soup.  Try it for your next dinner party.

2 teaspoons canola oil 

1 yellow onion, roughly chopped

4 – 5 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed

1 quart safe chicken or vegetable broth

3 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1-inch cubes

1/2 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (or regular sweet paprika)

1 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Juice of 1 lime (3 tablespoons)

Heat canola oil in a large soup pot over medium heat.  Saute onions until edges begin to brown, about 5-7 minutes.  Add garlic and stir until fragrant, about another minute.   Pour in vegetable broth, sweet potatoes, oregano, paprika, and salt.  Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 20 – 25 minutes, until sweet potatoes are very soft. 

Remove from heat and puree, either in batches in a food processor or blender, or using a stick blender.  Return to heat and stir in fresh cilantro and lime juice.   Cook for 5 minutes, then serve.

Optional:  Garnish each bowl of soup with a sprinkle of toasted pumpkin seeds.

(c) 2008 Jeanette Bradley

Broccoli, La Grande Farmer's Market, Creative Commons

Broccoli – Leek Puree

Broccoli, La Grande Farmer's Market, Creative Commons

After an initial Green-Eggs-and-Ham reaction, I found myself enjoying these so much that I snuck some from the fridge as a midnight snack.

3 leeks, sliced (white and light green parts only)

2 teaspoons olive oil

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1 cup water

1 medium head broccoli, roughly chopped (about 3 to 4 cups)

1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

Heat the oil on medium in a three-quart saucepan.   Add the leeks and saute until they are soft, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and thyme and saute for an additional 30 seconds.   Pour water into pan and stir in broccoli, scraping the bottom of the pan.   Cover and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and steam until broccoli is very soft, about 5 – 8 minutes.

Transfer broccoli mixture to a food processor or blender (or use a stick blender).  Puree.  Add parsley and pulse to mix in.

Serve as a side in place of mashed potatoes.

Marshmallows (Corn-free)


Once you’ve tried homemade marshmallows, you’ll never settle for those supermarket bags.   These are truly amazing, both to make and to eat.  Watching the syrup fluff up is one of those magical-seeming science experiments that make candymaking fun.

Thanks to Cooking for Engineers for the great information on the science and history of marshmallow making, as well as the recipe that inspired this corn-free version.

3 tablespoons unflavored gelatin

3/4 cup water, separated

2 cups white sugar

2/3 cup golden syrup

1/4 teaspoon salt

potato starch

Tools needed: stand mixer with paddle attachment and a candy thermometer

Oil a 9 x 13 baking pan and then powder liberally with the potato starch.   Pour 1/2 cup of the water and the gelatin into the bowl of your stand mixer.   Allow to sit for 10 minutes.

 Meanwhile, mix the remaining 1/4 cup  water, the sugar, salt and syrup together in a medium saucepan.  Cook over medium heat until the mixture reaches 250 degrees on a candy thermometer.  Do not stir once the mixture starts to bubble, or you risk having the syrup crystallize.  Wash down any crystals that form on the sides of the pan with a clean pastry brush dipped in cold water. 

Once the mixture has reached 250 degrees, remove it from the heat and immediately drizzle it into the gelatin mixture with the mixer running at low speed.  Once the syrup has all been poured in, increase the speed to high.  (You may need to do this slowly to prevent splatters, or cover the bowl with a tent of plastic wrap.)  Beat for 10 minutes on high until white and fluffy. 

Pour and/or scrape the fluff into the prepared pan and allow to dry overnight.  Turn out onto a board dusted liberally with potato starch and cut into cubes with a pizza cutter.  Dredge all sticky sides in the potato starch and store in an airtight container.  Marshmallows should keep for several weeks (if they last that long!)

Potato Pancakes (Latkes)

This recipe makes enough to serve at your next Hanukkah party.   Our friends could not tell that the egg was missing!

6 cups of packed shredded potatoes

1 large onion, shredded or minced finely

1 cup chickpea flour

2 tablespoons rice milk or water (optional)

Enough canola oil to cover the bottom of a large frying pan to 1/2 inch depth

Shred enough potatoes (by hand or in the blender) to make six packed cups.   Place a large handful of potatoes a double thickness of paper towels.  Gather the paper towels up around the potatoes and squeeze out the excess moisture from the potatoes.  Don’t go overboard on squeezing, since you will need the potatoes to retain some moisture for this recipe. 

Mix dried potatoes with onion and chickpea flour until all the chickpea flour is moistened.  Scoop up a golf-ball sized clump of potatoes and squeeze it together.  If the mixture retains its shape, there is enough moisture.  If it it too dry to stick together, add a little rice milk or water at a time until it sticks.

Heat oil on medium high.   

Shape small patties of potato mixture and gently drop them into the oil.  Cook 3-5 minutes on one side, until reddish brown, then flip and cook 3-5 minutes on the other side.  Loosen with a spatula, then remove pancakes from oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. 

You can hold the pancakes for up to 1/2 hour in a 200 degree oven.  Simply line a baking sheet with paper towels, and as each pancake is done, slip it into the oven to stay warm.


Chickpea and Kale Soup with Fresh Rosemary


This is a great batch cooking recipe.  It makes a big pot of soup, and freezes beautifully.

8 cups dried chickpeas

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 large onions, chopped

8 cloves of garlic, minced

1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

2 or 3 4-inch stems of fresh rosemary

2 teaspoons salt (or to taste)

2 bunches flat-leaf kale, stemmed and chopped roughly

Soak the chickpeas 8 hours or overnight in a large stockpot.   Drain.

Refill the pot with water so that the water level is 2 inches above the chickpeas.   Set on burner set at medium high heat.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer.  Skim off any foam that rises to the top.

Heat olive oil in a separate saute pan over medium heat.  Saute the onions until beginning to brown, about 7 minutes.  Add garlic and red pepper flakes and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Scoop a ladle full of the chickpea water into the saute pan and use your spatula to scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan.  Pour liquid and onions into stockpot.

Add rosemary to stockpot.  Cover and simmer for 2-3 hours, until chickpeas are tender.

Use a hand-held or stand blender to blend soup until it thickens (or alternatively, use a potato masher against the bottom of the pot) but still has some whole chickpeas remaining.  Stir in salt and kale.  Heat until kale wilts.

Divide into freezer containers and freeze.

(c) 2007 Jeanette Bradley