Curried pear & butternut squash soup

This soup was made for my Soup & Sandwich Swap event, which you can read about HERE for more recipes and pictures.

Megan & Matt’s curried pear & butternut squash soup
1 butternut squash (about 2 3/4 pounds)
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups chopped peeled Bartlett pear (about 1 pound)
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced onion
2 1/3 cups water
1 cup pear nectar
2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans vegetable broth
2 1/2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup half-and-half
1 small Bartlett pear, cored and thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 375°. Cut squash in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membrane. Place squash halves, cut sides down, on a baking sheet; bake at 375° for 45 minutes or until tender. Cool. Peel squash; mash pulp. Set aside 3 1/2 cups pulp, reserving remaining squash for another use.

Melt butter in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add chopped pear and onion; sauté 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

Add squash pulp, water, and next 5 ingredients (water through pepper). Bring to a boil; partially cover, reduce heat, and simmer 40 minutes.

Place one-third of squash mixture in a blender; process until smooth. Pour puréed mixture into a large bowl; repeat procedure with remaining squash mixture.

Return squash mixture to pan; stir in half-and-half. Cook over low heat 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Ladle soup into bowls, and garnish with pear slices.

Serves 8 (serving size: 1 1/4 cups)

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Thai Green Curry Chicken Filling

The following recipe was used for my Steam Buns cooking class. You can read about my class and get other links to recipes HERE.

Thai Green Curry Chicken Filling

1-2 cloves garlic, minced

1 medium onion, diced
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1/2 tablespoon Thai green curry paste
1 lb ground chicken
1 can coconut milk
1 cup bamboo shoots, julienned
1/2 cup slivered green onions
salt & white pepper to taste

In a wok or skillet, saute garlic & onions in oil.
Add curry paste and ground chicken and stir to heat.
Add coconut milk and bamboo shoots; stir. Allow the milk to reduce to half.
Remove from heat and stir in green onions, salt & white pepper. Allow to cool before using as filling.

Thai Green Curry Chicken Fried Rice

Thai Green Curry Chicken Fried Rice
2 large chicken breasts
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large “thumb” of fresh ginger, julienned
2 tablespoons green curry paste
2-3 cups cold leftover white rice
1 handful extra fine green beans
1 can (13.5 oz) coconut milk
cooking oil

Chop chicken breasts in chunks & season with salt & pepper.
Pan fry chicken until fully cooked.
In the same pan, add cooking oil, garlic, onion and ginger.
When onions have softened, add green curry paste.
Stir chicken until fully coated.
Add and fold in cold rice.
If needed, add a little cooking oil to prevent rice from sticking to pan.
Add beans; stirring to combine.
Slowly pour in coconut milk, a little at a time and fold in.
When fully heated through and combined, serve.

The Union of Curry & Rice

Often times, I’ll have leftover rice after cooking dinner for a family event. Usually my first instinct is to make fried rice. However this time I decided to make a different version with a Thai twist. It’s a little creamy, a little spicy and so good… its my green chicken curry fried rice.

In Thai cuisine green curry is one of the spicier variations of curry. The thickness of the sauce varies with the amount of coconut milk used. The main ingredients are coconut milk, green curry paste, sugar, fish sauce, kaffir lime leavees and thai basil leaves. Typically, green curry paste is made by pounding in a mortar ingredients including: shallots, green chillies, garlic, galangal, fresh turmeric, shrimp paste and salt.
Here is my recipe for green chicken curry fried rice:
6 chicken thighs
3 eggs, scrambled
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large “thumb” of fresh ginger, julienned
2 tablespoons green curry paste
2-3 cups cold leftover white rice
1 cup frozen green peas
1 can baby corn, drained
1 handful extra fine green beans
1 can (13.5 oz) coconut milk
cooking oil
In a pot, place chicken thighs and cover with water.
Boil chicken until fully cooked.
Allow chicken to cool and debone.
Chop chicken and set aside.
In a large saute pan, add cooking oil and fry eggs.
When scrambled and completely cooked, remove from pan and set aside.
In the same pan, add cooking oil, garlic, onion and ginger.
When onions have softened, add cooked chicken.
Stir and then add green curry paste.
Stir chicken until fully coated.
Add and fold in cold rice.
If needed, add a little cooking oil to prevent rice from sticking to pan.
Add peas, baby corn and beans; stirring to combine.
Slowly pour in coconut milk, a little at a time and fold in.
When fully heated through and combined, serve.
This is a meal on its own, but can accompany garlic spinach if you’d like.

Thai-tastic!

For the next month, I’m going to be trying to cook with what I have in my pantry and kitchen. Our upcoming move forces me to not buy more ingredients so it might be a little interesting as we get closer to May! Today I made a Thai dish of green chicken curry.

In Thai cuisine green curry (Thai: แกงเขียวหวาน) is one of the spicier variations of curry. The thickness of the sauce varies with the amount of coconut milk used. The main ingredients are coconut milk, green curry paste, eggplant, sugar, fish sauce, kaffir lime leaves and thai basil leaves.

Its name, “green” curry, is consistent of Thai curry dishes, which are frequently identified solely by their color, other common types being yellow and red curry.

Typically, green curry paste is made by pounding in a mortar ingredients including: shallots, green chillies, garlic, galangal, fresh turmeric, shrimp paste and salt.

The paste is briefly fried in a wok and coconut milk is added, then the meat and vegetables added along with a pinch of brown sugar. Finally, kaffir lime leaves and thai basil are added just at the end of cooking for fragrance.

Thai green curry can be made with meat, chicken, fish or vegetables and is usually eaten as an accompaniment to rice or round rice noodles known as “khanom jeen”.
Here is my recipe for Thai Green Chicken Curry:

1 tablespoon oil
1 chopped onion
2 tablespoons green curry paste (ready made)
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
1/2 cups water
1-2 lbs chicken thighs
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon lime juice
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 package frozen asian veggies
1 handful chopped cilantro

Heat the oil in a wok or heavy-based pan.
Brown the chicken in the pan – just for color.
Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
In the pan, add the onion and curry paste to the wok.
Cook for 1 minute stirring constantly.
Add the coconut milk and water to the wok and bring to the boil.
Add the chicken pieces back to the pan.
Let chicken simmer in the sauces for about 20 min until cooked through.
Add the fish sauce, lime juice, lime rind and sugar to the wok, stir.
Add frozen veggies and let it simmer in sauce until warmed through.
Sprinkle chopped cilantro in and stir before serving.

I served this with steamed jasmine rice.