Spiced Glazed Carrots with Sweet Vermouth and Citrus

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Another hit from the Nov 2011 Bon Appétit issue! This one was the biggest hit of turkey day! It is perfect for a week night and you could substitute baby carrots to make it an even quicker meal.

Ingredients:
1 lb cut into 1″ pieces
1 tablespoons butter
1/2 tsp salt
12 whole black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 TBSP fresh clementine juice or orange juice
2 TBSP sweet vermouth, divided
2 pinches ground cloves
1 TBSP fresh tarragon leaves
1/4 tsp clementine zest or orange zest

Bring carrots, butter, 1/2 teaspoon salt, peppercorns, bay leaf, and 1/2 cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender, 7– minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer carrots to a medium bowl.

Add clementine juice, 1 TBSP Sweet Vermouth and ground cloves to skillet and cook until glaze forms, 7-8 minutes. Stir in carrots and remaining 1 tablespoon Sweet Vermouth. Season carrots to taste with salt. Garnish with tarragon and clementine zest.

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Kabocha Squash with Ginger

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I found this in the Nov 2011 issue of Bon Appétit, they strained the ginger and used heavy cream. I lightened it up by using 1/2 and 1/2 and lots of ginger. I also reheated it in the oven.

Ingredients
2 kabocha squash, halved, seeded
Salt and pepper
1 6″ piece of ginger, peeled, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
3/4 c half and half

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or foil. Season inside of squash with salt and pepper. Place squash, cut side down, on prepared sheet. Roast until tender, 1-1 1/4 hours. Let cool slightly.

Pulse ginger in a food processor until finely chopped. Scoop squash flesh into a food processor. Add sugar, with machine running, gradually add 1/2 & 1/2 and purée until smooth, adding more cream by tablespoonfuls if too thick. Season with salt, pepper.

Serves 8.

Wild Rice Salad

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I made this rice salad for Thanksgiving, the inspiration came from the Nov 2011 issue of Bon Appétit. It was super simple and tastes better the next day!

1 TBSP olive oil
3 large celery stalks, finely chopped
1 c finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups wild rice
2 c chicken broth
1 bay leaf
1 tsp salt plus more
3/4 c pecans
3/4 c dried cranberries
3/4 c dried apricots, coarsely chopped
3/4 c golden raisins
Freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 c thinly sliced small celery stalks
1/2 c celery leaves from celery heart, coarsely chopped

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add chopped celery and onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and almost translucent, about 8 minutes. Stir in garlic; cook, stirring often, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add wild rice; stir for 1 minute. Add broth, bay leaf, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 1/2 cups water; increase heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Uncover, stir, and continue cooking, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender, 20-–40 minutes.

Discard bay leaf. Stir in dried cranberries, apricots, and raisins. Let sit, covered, for 5 minutes.

Season rice to taste with salt and pepper. Fold pecans, sliced cranberries, and sliced celery into mixture. Garnish with celery leaves.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts

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Nothing better than the nutty taste of roasted Brussel sprouts & bacon, unless you add shallots!

Ingredients:
1 lb Brussel sprouts
1 TBSP olive oil
2 strips of bacon, thinly sliced
6 shallots – quartered

Preheat oven to 425.

In a large baking dish, toss all ingredients, add salt and pepper to taste. Bake for 30 – 45 min until Brussels sprouts are nicely browned, stirring a few times.

Serves 4
3 WW PP per serving.

Broccoli Purée with Mint

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Have I mentioned how much I love Patricia Wells, lately? She is a food genius!! I had a bunch of broccoli and felt totally uninspired, so I thumbed through a coupes cookbooks for some help, as usual, Ms Wells did not let me down. This recipe is so simple and tastes amazing!! Best of all you can eat as much as you please guilt free!

Ingredients:
2 lb broccoli florets and stems, cut into pieces
1 c mint

Steam broccoli. Pop in the food processor with the mint, add a pinch of salt, and purée. Voila you are done!

4 – 6 servings
0 WW PP per serving!!

Chocolate Pumpkin Cupcakes

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This recipe was inspired and adapted from a recipe I found in Sunset Magazine. I swapped oat flour for regular flour, replaced the oil with more pumpkin and cut the sugar down by 1/2 – the results, yummy and healthy!!

3/4 c sugar
1/2 c buttermilk
2 eggs
1 can pumpkin purée (minus 2 TBSP)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla
2 c oat flour
3/4 c cocoa powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

Frosting
2 TBSP pumpkin purée
8 oz mascarpone cheese
1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp vanilla
Pinch of salt
1/2 c powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350.

Beat sugar, buttermilk, eggs, pumpkin, salt and vanilla until well blended.

Whisk together dry ingredients. Gradually add to wet mixture, beat until smooth.

Line muffin pan with muffin papers and fill 1/2 way. Bake until toothpick comes out clean about 20 min.

In a medium bowl beat frosting ingredients. Frost cooled cupcakes.

24 servings
4 WW PP per cupcake.

Cheesy Spaghetti Squash

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This dish came together based on food I did not want to toss in the green waste. And it is the perfect meatless Monday comfort food!

8 inch spaghetti squash
1 c chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 lb. sliced mushrooms
1/2 tsp. oregano
2 cup chopped tomatoes
Salt and pepper
3/4 c. Ricotta cheese
1 c. Mozzarella cheese
1/4 c. fresh parsley
1 tsp. basil
Dash of thyme

Preheat oven to 400.

Poke a few holes in the squash, place in a pan and bake for 60 minutes, until easy pierced with a fork. Let cool a few minutes, slice in half, scoop out seeds, and shred with a fork.

While squash bakes, saute onions and garlic with salt, pepper, mushrooms, and herbs. When onions are soft, add freshly chopped tomatoes. Cook until most liquid evaporates. Combine all ingredients and pour into a 2 quart buttered casserole. Top with lots of grated Parmesan cheese. Bake at 375 degrees in open casserole, about 40 minutes.

Serves 4.
6 WW PP per serving.

Roasted Jersaleum Artichoke

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I love the delicate flavor of Jersaleum Artichokes. And they are worth all the labor. When I buy them, i look for ones with as few nubs as possible, it makes for quicker peeling. This recipe is pulled from Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan, and I just used a little less olive oil.

Ingredients:
1 lb Jersaleum Artichoke, rinsed, peeled, and quartered
4 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1 TBSP olive oil
4 sprigs thyme
4 sprigs rosemary
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 375.

Toss garlic, artichokes, olive and salt in a glass baking dish. Bake for 40 – 50 minutes, stirring a couple times.

Serves 4.
3 WW PP per serving.

Baked Delicata Squash

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I found Delicata squash at the farmers market a couple of weeks ago, and I’m totally addicted. You can eat the skin on this squah, and even my 3 year old has been seen eating a bite or two. It’s super easy to make, and best of all low fat!

Ingredients:
2 Delicata squash, halved and seeds removed
8 cloves of garlic
12 sage leaves
Olive oil

Preheat oven to 400.

Spray a glass baking pan with olive oil spray. Lay squah in the pan, top with garlic, sage, salt & pepper, spray with olive oil. Bake for 40 minutes until the squash is soft.

4 servings.
1 WW PP per serving.
1 WW

Kabocha Purée with Ginger

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I found this in the November Issue of Bon Appétit, of course I made a few changes. I swapped half and half for cream and greatly reduced the amount, I used a bit more ginger and extra spoonful of brown sugar. It turned out wonderful!

–2 1/2-pound kabocha squash, halved, seeded
salt and pepper
1 TBSP brown sugar
1/4 c half and half

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or foil. Season inside of squash with salt and pepper. Place squash, cut side down, on prepared sheet. Roast until tender, 1-1 1/4 hours. Let cool slightly.

Pulse ginger in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to prepared strainer. Scoop squash flesh into a food processor. Add sugar. With machine running, gradually add half and half and purée until smooth, adding more cream by tablespoonfuls if too thick. Season with salt, pepper, and more ginger juice, if desired. Gently warm in a saucepan, stirring constantly, until heated through.