The Brave Cook

My first steps into sewing and fashion design from urban Berlin!

Archive for the tag “hokkaido”

Some powerful words and some creamy squash!

This week some words by the writer Marianne Williamson from her book “A return to love” got stuck in my head: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?”

I love this short quote a lot, it really gives me motivation to hang on to my dreams and to love myself for my strengths and positive character traits. Of course, I also continued my practice in the kitchen presenting you today a delicious and wonderful looking creamy squash soup. I’ve seen quite a lot squash recipes the last days on wordpress and I loved them all, but I definitely wanted to make my own.Ingredients

  • 1 large butternut or hokkaido squash
  • 2 floury potatoes
  • 4 carrots
  • 1 onion (not necessarily)
  • 4 scallions
  • 1 chili
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp sweet mustard
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

Instructions

Prepare the chicken or vegetable stock in a large stock pot or pan while chopping the vegetables. You can use as much stock as you like, depending on how creamy or not you want to squash soup to be. I didn’t use a lot of stock, because I wanted it to be very creamy.

Halve, seed, peel and cube the squash. Peel and chop also the onion, the potatoes, the carrots and the chili. Chop the scallions and add other herbs to your taste. Heat another large stock pot over medium-high heat with one tablespoon of olive oil and add the chopped onion first for some minutes, until softened. Now you can also add the squash, the other vegetables and the stock. Don’t forget to sprinkle with one teaspoon salt, some lemon juice and to add one teaspoon mustard.Bring everything to a boil, cover, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 30-40 minutes until everything is completely tender. Now use an immersion blender or transfer it to a stand up blender/food processor to blend the soup smooth. You can still add more stock if it should be too thick for you.

Serve in small bowls with a dollop of sour cream or chopped scallions. Enjoy and have a great weekend!

The Brave Cook

My Hokkaido, my love!

This week was weird! Although I’m having one week of holidays I’m still not feeling relaxed. Every single day is running by so fast. I really don’t know how to stick to my tight schedule for this week. At least the weather is more sunny than rainy this week so that I could capture one hour of sun today.

I think I need to remind everyone who reads this blog that I’m far from being a professional cook. I’m an amateur learning how to cook and trying to improve myself day by day. Of course, that doesn’t mean I’m such a horrible cook. To prove you that I’m able to deliver some decent recipes I’m presenting you today another creative dish made with two adorable fruits: Hokkaido squash and pomegranate!

I was thinking a long time if there’s actually an english name for the japanese hokkaido squash. The hokkaido orange squash that I’m using for my recipe is quite common here in Germany, but I haven’t really seen them in the US yet. Whatever, it is definitely a lot of fun to prepare stuffed hokkaido squash with rice and pomegranate! What is more, it is the perfect dish when you’re planning to invite guests and to surprise them!

Stuffed hokkaido squash with rice and pomegranate

Ingredients

  • 1 small round hokkaido
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 bag or 1 cup of rice
  • 5 shiitake or oyster mushrooms
  • 2 cherry tomatoes
  • fresh herbs such as parsley, dill or else
  • rose leaves, fresh or brewed in tea

Instructions

Cut off the top part of the squash as seen in the picture above. Use a sharp knife, hold it at an angle to the chopping board and carefully cut round the top of the squash, cutting out a shallow cone. Use a teaspoon to scoop out and discard the seeds and the stringy fibers.

Boil the rice in a small saucepan until it is tender. In the meantime, half the pomegranate along its equator and, holding the cut side over a bowl, beat the seeds out of it by bashing the skin with the end of a rolling pin or a wooden spoon. Of course, you can also scoop them out with your fingers.

Chop the mushrooms and the tomatoes, put them in a saucepan and sauté them for 3 – 5 minutes. Take a bowl, put the boiled rice with the mushrooms, the tomatoes and the pomegranate seeds in it. Chop some fresh dill or other fresh herbs and add them to the other ingredients in the bowl. Now knead everything with your hands or with a big spoon until it is incorporated.

I also brewed up some rose tea to add a few rose leaves into the rice. You can leave it out or simply put some rose leaves on top of the squash for decoration. I love to use eatable flowers, especially roses, for my dishes. Of course you can use fresh rose leaves too!

Preheat the oven to 180℃. Spoon the rice with all ingredients into the quash. Put the cut top back on the squash and bake for 30 minutes until the squash flesh starts to get tender. You can test it with skewer. The best way is to serve it hot out of the oven!Enjoy your stuffed squash, the next squash recipe is on its way!

The Brave Cook

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