Super bowl….of soup!!!

{skip the foreplay and head straight to the roasted butternut squash soup recipe}

As we all prepare for this upcoming Sunday evening with Tom Brady, I want to encourage you to think about serving this truly SUPER BOWL of soup during the game! Delicious sunshine in a bowl, this soup only has 1 gram of saturated fat and less than 200 calories per serving**, but that’s not the only reason why it’s perfect for the game:

IMG_2345Vitamin A

Why it’s important: Eyesight (particularly night vision), immune function, gene expression, fetal development, red blood cell production

How much we need per day* (males/females): 900 µg/700 µg

Amount in a serving of this soup**: 1052 µg

(Some other good sources: Sweet potato, pumpkin, carrots, cantaloupe, spinach, kale, collard greens)

bottom line: you’ll still be able to see Tom–even if the lights go out

Vitamin C

Why it’s important: Wound healing, resistance to infection, antioxidant

How much we need per day* (males/females): 90 mg/75 mg

Amount in a serving of this soup**: 35 mg

(Some other good sources: Citrus fruits, strawberries, kiwis, tomatoes, sweet red peppers, broccoli)

bottom line: you can offer Tom a bowl if he gets scraped up during the game

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Iron

Why it’s important: Oxygen transport, infection resistance, DNA synthesis

How much we need per day* (males/females): 8 mg/18mg***

Amount in a serving of this soup**: 2 mg

(Some other good sources: Oysters, beef, lentils, tofu, chicken, kidney beans, potatoes with skin)

Eating vitamin C with iron helps increase the bioavailability of iron, or how well the body is able to actually use the iron that is taken in. Oh, and look at that; this SUPER BOWL of soup has both!

bottom line: Tom is hot.  Iron will help you catch your breath.

Magnesium

Why it’s important: Nerve impulse transmission & muscle contractions, energy production, DNA, RNA, and protein synthesis

How much we need per day* (males/females): 420 mg/320 mg

Amount in a serving of this soup**: 59 mg

(Some other good sources: Brown rice, spinach, almonds, lima beans, peanuts, swiss chard)

bottom line: you need your heart to be able to contract when it drops every time Tom is on the field

Here’s to hoping the Patriots are on offense most of the game! Happy Super Bowl everyone!

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Roasted Butternut Squash Soup Recipe

  • Servings: 5 servings
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients:
roughly 24 oz prepackaged butternut squash cubes or a 1.5-2 lb whole squash
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 teaspoon garlic, minced (~1 clove)
3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
1 small apple, peeled and chopped OR 1/3 cup applesauce
2-3 teaspoons fresh thyme
2 teaspoons ground ginger
32 fl oz box chicken or vegetable stock (~4 cups)
salt & pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Roast the Squash:
–Preheat oven to 400°F.
–Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

If you bought a whole butternut squash:
a. Wash squash.
b. Cut squash in half and remove seeds and stringy bits (you can save the seeds to roast later if you’d like or just toss)
c. On the inside, flesh side of each half of squash, drizzle olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Rub olive oil and s&p into the squash a little, making sure the oil covers all of the squash.
d. Place on baking sheet inside/flesh side down and place in the oven to roast for 30-40 minutes or until the squash is soft. (you can put the squash in before the oven is preheated)
e.  Allow the squash to cool until you can touch it and scoop the flesh out of the squash and into your soup pot and mix.

If you used pre-packaged squash:
a. Place on prepared baking sheet, sprinkle with olive oil, salt, and pepper and mix, so all sides of the squash cubes are coated.
b. Roast for 30 minutes or until the squash cubes are soft and slightly browned. (you don’t have to wait until your oven is preheated to start roasting)
c. Add roasted squash to your soup pot and mix.

2. While the squash is roasting, chop the rest of the ingredients.  Add the olive oil to large soup pot and heat on medium-high.  Add garlic, onion, carrots, and if using apple (not applesauce) add apple.  Cook until the onion is translucent.
3. Add chicken stock, thyme, and applesauce if you used that instead of the apple.  Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat, continuing to cook until carrots are soft and your squash is roasted.
4. Once squash is roasted and mixed with the rest of the soup, use either an immersion blender to blend the soup right there in the pot, or divide the soup into batches and use a blender.
5. TASTE!  Add salt and pepper as you’d like…I ended up adding probably a teaspoon or so of each.
6. Garnish with toasted almonds and extra fresh thyme.  Enjoy!

*These amounts are the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA). This is the average daily dietary intake amount of a particular nutrient recommended by the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine (in 2001) to ensure adequate stores of the nutrient for proper body function in a healthy person. (see a full RDA chart here)
**Recipe nutrition facts from USDA (www.SuperTracker.usda.gov).
***18 mg for pre-menopausal women is recommended and 8 mg for post-menopausal women is recommended.

Source: Oregon State University Linus Pauling Institute (http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/)

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peanut butter jelly time

{skip the foreplay and head straight to the recipe}photo 3 (3)Peanut butter and jelly isn’t just a classic combination; it’s a comfort combo and perfect for all of the snowy cold weather we’ve been having lately.  Everyone has their own way of making a PB&J, some people are more of PB fan than the J.  Others want more J.  The best thing about these cookies is that you can decide your PB-to-J ratio.  Not a J fan, don’t put the jelly glaze on (they’re still fantastic, soft, peanut butter cookies).  Like a lot of jelly?  Load the cookie up!

photo 2 (3)photo 3 (2)photo 1 (3)
If you’re making these for a crowd, make some cookies with a lot of jelly and some with only a drizzle.  I used raspberry preserves to make the glaze today, but if grape, or maybe strawberry, is your jam (ha!) then use that instead.

So, this cookie is super easy to put together. However, you’ve got some options when making these.  Personal preference: do you like crunchy or smooth peanut butter (or as my nephew insists on having, “that peanut butter with no peanuts!”).  You can use either kind here.  I opted for creamy peanut butter (because that was what I had).  These would be fantastic with almond butter, or use sun butter if there is a peanut allergy concern.

I said above that this makes a really soft peanut butter cookie–which was a partial lie because the cookie is actually pretty flexible with baking times.  If you like a crisp, crunchy cookie, just leave the cookies in the oven a little longer.  I personally usually enjoy soft, chewy cookies better than the crisp, crunchy ones–and this recipe, thanks to the cream cheese, has the ability to be really soft, AND stay soft.  I’ve found that other peanut butter cookies, quickly loose their softness after a day or so.  These don’t–although, full disclosure: I’ve never actually had much experience with them really staying around for long!

photo 1 (4)The size of the cookie that you make is also up to you, giant cookies need to bake longer (15-17 min for soft, chewy giant cookies, a few min longer for a crisp cookie) than tablespoon-sized cookies (10-ish minutes, and more like 12-13 minutes for a crisper cookie).  You’ll know the cookies are done (for a soft, chewy one) when just the bottoms and the edges of the cookies are starting to brown.  Don’t take the cookies out of the oven, however, until they start to crack on the top.  These cracks on top provide perfect crevices for the jelly glaze to get stuck.

photo 2 (4)While the cookies bake you want to have done two things: mix up the glaze (powdered sugar+jam+milk) and set up your decorating/cooling station with a sheet of newspaper or wax paper (something you can throw away) underneath a wire cooling rack.  When the cookies come out of the oven transfer them to the cooling rack that is on top of something to catch the stray jelly glaze and immediately spoon on/drizzle on the jelly glaze.  If you don’t have something to catch the excess jelly glaze, you’ll have a sticky mess.  The cookie will absorb some of the glaze and just be super delicious, which won’t happen as well if you wait until the cookies are completely cool.  Here is where you can play with your PB-to-J ratio.  You can also make them into thumb print cookies by pushing your thumb/backside of a spoon into the cookie while its still warm and fill with the jelly glaze/or just plain jam.  I like some jam in every bite, however so I opted for the spoon over method.  The glaze works well drizzling with a fork or whisk.  It is a glaze (considerably more liquid than an icing) so the ziplock pastry bag method doesn’t give you a huge amount of control, but more than just a fork would, if you are so inclined.  Enjoy with a big glass of milk and a buddy!photo 4 (3)

 

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies Recipe

  • Servings: 2.5 dozen cookies
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

photo 4 (3)photo 4 (2)photo 3 (3)Peanut Butter Cookies:

  • 4 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¾ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (Gluten Free) Oat flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Jelly Glaze:

  • ¼ cup your favorite flavor fruit preserves
  • 2 tablespoons milk or almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar (a little more or less depending on how sweet your jelly is)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Cream together the peanut butter and cream cheese.
  3. Add the sugars, egg, and vanilla extract.
  4. Sift together the oat and almond flours, baking powder, and salt.   Then add these dry ingredients to the wet ingredient mixture and mix until blended.
  5. Roll the dough into tablespoon sized balls and place onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment or a Silpat…or make big cookies with roughly 3 tablespoons worth of dough.
  6. Bake for 10ish minutes (or 15-17 minutes for the big cookie size) at 350 degrees.  You just want the cookies to be browned basically only on the bottoms and maybe a little on the edges. When there are cracks all over the tops of the cookies they are probably done. While the cookies are baking, make the jelly glaze by beating together the powdered sugar, jelly, and milk. As soon as the cookies come out of the oven spread/drizzle them with the glaze.