To know winter squash is to love winter squash

Few things come to mind faster than a pumpkin when it comes to thoughts of fall. A heavy fall crop, winter squash offers many variables and wanted to make sure you know how amazing it is for the body.

Its history dates back over 10,000 years from an area between Guatemala and Mexico as a food source though originally it was just the seeds that were eaten as the flesh was thin and bitter. Christopher Columbus took them back to Europe where they began to be cultivated.

A couple of the greatest things about consuming winter squash is that it is full of antioxidants and is an anti-inflammatory food of which we can never eat enough of. Full of vitamins A, C, B6, Manganese, copper, potassium, B2, folate, K, Omega 3 fats, magnesium, and B3.

In addition to being a nutritional friend to our bodies winter squash also helps regulate blood sugar and insulin in addition to being an amazing source of fiber.

Not prone to sharing recipes, I have to include this one as it is one of my favorites and is such a hearty vegan recipe that you have to try it! Feel free to make flavor variations that suit your taste. Have an amazing weekend, share if you like, eat some squash soon and Be Well!

Brett’s Autumn Hugs Hearty Squash Soup
• One large to medium butternut squash
• One acorn squash
• Two tablespoons coconut oil
• One white onion finely diced
• One teaspoon real salt
• One teaspoon white pepper
• One teaspoon ground nutmeg
• One teaspoon onion powder
• One teaspoon grounds ginger/garlic paste
• Seeds of 8 green and four black cardamom-ground
• 4 cups (1 large box) vegetable stock
• 2 cups soaked cashews (4 hours min)
• 2 cups of coconut water or water

Cut squashes in half, clean out seeds, brush flesh with coconut oil and sprinkle salt, pepper and nutmeg. Place face down on a sheet pan and bake in the oven for 60 minutes at 350. In a high-speed blender puree the soaked cashews and coconut water for several minutes, set aside. In a stock pot place remainder of coconut oil and onion, cook 5-7 minutes till translucent, then toss in other spices and ground cardamoms and allow to sizzle for up to a minute.

Add cashew mix and then add the flesh of both squashes. Once complete use an immersion blender to break things down as smooth as you like it, but not completely. This recipe delivers a thick and hearty soup and unless you’re dead set on a perfectly smooth soup try it with the small chunks in it. Top with freshly toasted pumpkin seeds and enjoy. This pot of soup serves several and if given an extra day for flavors to marry, all the better!

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