Happy Monday, friends! I hope you enjoyed reading about our Fall Farmers’ Market Feast, my third challenge entry for the Project Foodblog contest. If you feel so inclined to vote for my entry, I will love you forever. If not, no worries – I will still tell you how I made all of our delicious farm to table food. :)
Since so many of you sounded interested in re-creating our dinner menu, I figured it was only fair to do a follow-up recipe post. Starting with course #1 – White Bean and Roasted Garlic Dip.
This is by far the easiest recipe to share with you, because it is not mine! I used my favorite recipe website to search for a quick and tasty appetizer. The link to the original recipe is here!
For course #2, things got a little more complicated…
Butternut Squash and Black Bean Chili in Pumpkin Bowls (vegan)
Ingredients: (makes 4 servings)
- 4 mini pumpkins
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 2 cups bell peppers, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 butternut squash, cubed
- 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 2 tbsp chili powder
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- salt and pepper to taste
To Prepare: Start with 4 mini sugar pumpkins…
And then cut the tops off about 3/4 of the way up the pumpkin. Once the tops were cut off, I used a grapefruit spoon to scoop out the insides until they were nice and smooth. (Note: seeds can be kept and rinsed for future roasting!)
I must not have carved pumpkins in a long time because I forgot what HARD work it is! Getting all four of these completely smooth and clean (for eating) took me about half an hour, and left me with Jell-O arms. Once they were ready, I brushed the insides with olive oil, and sprinkled them each with salt and pepper. You didn’t think these were just serving vessels, did you? Heck no, we don’t waste food here – we are EATING these pumpkins too! Put the pumpkins on a sheet tray and roast them empty for about 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven.
In the meantime, make your chili on the stovetop. Start by sautéing the diced onions, garlic, butternut squash, and bell peppers until browned and soft. After about ten minutes or so, add all of the rest of the ingredients, and bring up to a simmer for 15 minutes.
Once the pumpkins have roasted (empty) for about 30 minutes, bring them out of the oven and carefully ladle the chili into each pumpkin bowl, filling about 3/4 of the way to the top.
Depending on the size of your pumpkins, they can hold a pretty big portion of chili. Not a problem for me and my guests because the chili was delicious. :) Pop the chili-filled pumpkins back into the oven and let them roast for an additional 45 minutes to 1 hour. Using a fork, poke the inside of the pumpkin flesh to see if it is fork tender. Make sure to keep an eye on the pumpkins so that they don’t over-cook, and end up getting too soft on the bottom.
Once they are fork tender, and just about ready – pop the tops back on the pumpkins and turn the oven heat way down to the “keep warm” setting – about 170 degrees. Let them sit in the warm oven with the tops on until they are ready to be served. Since the chili is actually cooked IN the pumpkins, the pumpkin flesh is soft and delicious – you get a little bit with every spoonful. Amazing!
And since clearly, you can’t eat chili without cornbread, I have a second delicious recipe coming ‘atcha.
Jalapeno Cornbread Muffins (Vegan and Gluten-Free)
Ingredients: (makes 12 muffins)
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1/3 cup each: teff, millet, and coconut flours (any 3 gluten free flours will do)
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 15oz can corn, drained
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 jalapeño diced
To Prepare: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (or if you are making these two together like me, just pop them in the oven underneath your pumpkins!) In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients (flours, xanthan gum, baking soda, salt, and pepper) and stir to combine. In a separate bowl, combine all wet ingredients (almond milk, creamed corn, vinegar, olive oil, and jalapeno) and mix thoroughly. Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry bowl, and mix to combine. Grease a 12-cup muffin pan, and carefully spoon the mixture evenly among the 12 cups. Bake 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle. Let cool on a metal rack before serving.
(Note: If you don’t care about necessarily making these gluten-free, you can take out the 3 flours and xanthan gum and simply substitute with 1 cup AP flour.)
The end result is fluffy, moist, and amazingly delicious.
As for the chocolate pumpkin fondue recipe, I don’t think it was successful enough to make it onto the much-tested Front Burner recipe page. But I am happy to share the basics of my first attempt with you. I simply melted some bittersweet chocolate chips over low heat in a sauce pan, and then slowly whisked in a bit of almond milk to thin the thick chocolate. Once soft, I added 1 can of pumpkin puree, and whisked the mixture until fluffy and warmed.
The end result was absolutely delicious, because let’s face it – it’s chocolate dip! What’s not to like? But it wasn’t as pumpkiny as I had hoped, and I’d like to improve on it by making it again (perhaps a ploy to make additional batches of chocolate fondue?). :)