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asparagus soup

13 May

IMG_1200Soup in Spring?

When asparagus season starts, it’s easy to get really excited and buy a whole bunch of these detoxifying spears.

But when it feels as though you have exhausted all of your recipe options, it’s time to take out your immersion blender and make some soup!

Here’s how:

Serves 2 – Prep time 5 minutes – Total time 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • Asparagus, 6-8 spears
  • Water, 2 cups
  • Small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Crack of pepper
  • Dollop of sour cream/creme fraiche/plain yogurt (optional, but recommended)

Directions:

1. Prep ingredients: Rinse asparagus, snap or cut off tough ends of the spears, then cut in half. Dice your onion.

2. Cook: Add water to a pot, then place asparagus in the water. Cover, and bring to a boil then to a simmer. Steam for 5-7 minutes (depending on thickness of spears). While asparagus is steaming, add oil to a pan and caramelize your onions for 5-7 minutes.

3. Blend and serve: Add your caramelized onions into the pot with the steamed asparagus. Insert your immersion blender (or pour contents into your food processor), blend until smooth. Serve in bowls, with a drizzle of olive oil and a dollop of sour cream, top with a little salt and pepper.

Enjoy this seasonal soup hot or cold, and have fun experiencing asparagus in a whole new way!

on the joys of caramelizing brussels sprouts

7 Dec

4103982312_050c2881dcCaramelizing brussels sprouts is pretty fun! Have you ever tried it? If you haven’t ventured that way yet you should with a little inspiration from us, and our seasonal table top that our kids get to read while eating lunch at school.

What makes caramelizing so fun? Maybe it’s the concept of bringing out the flavors of the sprouts natural sugars, and the sweet smell that they emit as they brown. Or the anticipation of biting into one after all the work you have put into it? Either which way, we love caramelizing, and here is how you can learn to love it too:

Option 1 : Steaming + caramelizing

Ingredients: 

  • Brussels sprouts, rinsed
  • Olive oil
  • Sea salt

Directions: 

Steam sprouts in boiling water for 4 minutes, or until bright green. Place steamed sprouts on cutting board, cut in 1/2. Over medium heat, heat up olive oil in a pan, then add your halved sprouts, flat sides facing down. Sprinkle a pinch of sea salt. Let cook for 4 minutes. Check for doneness by flipping one or two over to see if they have browned. Once all browned, flip them on the other side for 4 minutes. Remove from the pan, and enjoy!

Option 2: Slicing + caramelizing

Ingredients:

  • Brussels sprouts, rinsed
  • Olive oil
  • Sea salt

Directions:

Cut sprouts into thin slices. Over medium heat, heat up olive oil, then add your sprouts. Sprinkle with sea salt. Let cook for 4 minutes. Flip them over, cook for another 4 minutes and voila, perfectly caramelized brussels sprouts in no time!

Photo courtesy of Nick Saltmarsh

Food quote inspiration

13 Sep

Letx27sx20Cookx20itx20Rightx201stx20Edx2e.1L“We are indeed much more than what we eat, but what we eat can nevertheless help us to be much more than what we are.”  – Adelle Davis

“Adelle Davis was an American author and nutritionist who became well known as an advocate for specific nutritional stances such as unprocessed food and vitamin supplementation. She gained prominence in the 1960s and 1970s with widespread media attention and became the most recognized nutritionist in the country.”

Check out her foundation, whose mission it is to “support a program of education and developmental activities relative to the field of nutrition.”

Photo courtesy of rubylane.com

grilled corn salad

11 Sep

3666164527_a1a4c9c4b8Saying farewell to summer is never easy, but the good news is, it will come again soon!

Here is a great way to use up some of your last ears of corn, which will help carve out some space in your fridge for the early fall produce that’s about to emerge:

Ingredients:

  • 4 ears shucked corn
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • ground pepper
  • 1/2 small red onion thinly sliced
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 1/2 jalapeno seeded and thinly sliced (if you like it spicy)
  • 3 tablespoons each of torn mint leaves, parsley, cilantro.

Directions: 

Heat a grill pan (or heat up your outdoor grill). Brush your corn with 1/2 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill it over high heat, turning until tender about 10 minutes, then let cool. Combine onion and lime juice in a small bowl and let stand for 10 minutes. Stir in the maple syrup, jalapeno (if you opted for it), 2 tablespoons olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Cut the corn kernels off the cob into a large bowl. Add the dressing and mix it all up, then add mint, parsley, and cilantro and toss again. Serve warm. Recipe adapted from Food & Wine.

Photo courtesy of stevendepolo

Vegan Zucchini Bread

22 Aug

Zucchini BreadAs our food + garden summer camp comes to a close, our campers are creating their last recipes to add to their Butter Beans cookbooks.

Hands down, one of their favorite foods they’ve made at camp was the vegan zucchini bread. They ranted and raved about this quick bread, so we thought we’d share the delicious recipe with you!

Makes 2 loaf pans, recipe adapted from hell yeah it’s vegan!

Ingredients:

  • 6 tbsp ground flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 2 cups turbinado or light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2-2.5 cups grated zucchini (~3 medium sized ones)
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips or raisins, optional

Directions: 

Grease 2 loaf pans, preheat the oven to 350F. Mix together flax seeds with warm water, then add sugar, oil, applesauce, vanilla and beat well. Add grated zucchini, and stir until combined. In a separate bowl, sift together remaining dry ingredients. Add dry mixture to wet ingredients and stir until combined. Pour batter into pans and bake for 50-55 minutes.

Thank you to all of the wonderful families and campers we have met along the way this summer! We hope that your children leave inspired to cook creatively, grow edible gardens, compost food scraps, support local farmers, preserve foods, make their own ice cream, and set good examples for those around them.

If you are interested in signing up for the adventures yet to come during summer camp 2013, shoot us an email at camp@butterbeanskitchen.com, we have some early bird discounts that you won’t want to miss!

Photo courtesy of lydiajoy1