Posts by tag: cheese

  • Autumn Kale Salad with Sautéed Pears

Autumn Kale Salad with Sautéed Pears

Posted on October 16, 2017

In the last two weeks, my taste buds have taken on a slight preference for comfort foods. But leafy green salads are still very high on my priority list. I crave salads all year long, not just in the warmer months. Especially when they’re filled with local, seasonal ingredients.

This Autumn Kale Salad with Sautéed Pears is my current obsession. It incorporates so many of my favorite Fall flavors, like fresh apple cider and maple syrup. And it highlights what I consider to be one of the most underappreciated Fall fruits: pears.

Autumn Kale Salad with Sautéed Pears | www.floatingkitchen.net

Pears always seem like they are playing second fiddle to apples. I mean, I love apples. Who doesn’t!?!? And admittedly, I’ve been on a bit of an apple spree myself these days. But pears deserve to be taken seriously once in a while, too. So I always make it a point to give them the spotlight in a couple different recipes over the course of their season.

For previous pear perfect recipes (say that three times fast!), check out these appetizers, this cake and this breakfast essential!

Autumn Kale Salad with Sautéed Pears | www.floatingkitchen.net

For the base of this salad, I used tender, baby kale. But you could use whatever greens you love (baby spinach would be excellent!). I added in red grapes, pecans and blue cheese crumbles. But the real showstopper in this recipe is the sautéed pears. Slightly softened, flavored with both apple cider and maple syrup, and so gosh darn pretty that it seems like a shame to chop them up, they are the perfect topper for all your leafy green bowls this Fall.

Choose pears (I used Bartlett pears for this recipe) that are ripe, but still a bit firm when pressed. Because you don’t want them getting too soft and mushy when you cook them. That would be no bueno.

What are your favorite ways to use pears this time of year? I would love to hear your ideas!

Cheers,

Liz

Autumn Kale Salad with Sautéed Pears

Serves 2

Autumn Kale Salad with Sautéed Pears

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup apple cider
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 pears, halved and cored
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • About 6 cups baby kale
  • 1 cup seedless grapes, halved
  • 1/2 cup pecans
  • 1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles

Instructions

  1. In a skillet over medium-high heat, bring the apple cider and maple syrup to a simmer. Add the pear halves to the cooking liquid, placing them cut side-down. Then sauté the pears for about 5 minutes, or until slightly softened, occasionally spooning some of the cooking liquid over top as they cook.
  2. Carefully remove the pears from the skillet and place them on a clean plate. Set aside.
  3. Whisk the olive oil, mustard, salt and black pepper into the remaining cooking liquid. Remove the skillet from the heat.
  4. Add the kale to a large bowl. Pour some of the warm dressing over the kale, tossing until the leaves are well coated. You may not use all the dressing, depending on your taste preferences.
  5. Divide the kale between two bowls. Top with the grapes, pecans, blue cheese and the sautéed pears. Serve immediately.
https://www.floatingkitchen.net/autumn-kale-salad-with-sauteed-pears/

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  • Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Fried Sage and Halloumi

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Fried Sage and Halloumi

Posted on September 18, 2017
Category:

This post was originally published here on October 1, 2014. I’ve since updated the photographs and text to better showcase just how delicious this Fall favorite really is!

This delightfully orange soup doesn’t have a single drop of pumpkin in it. And that’s totally fine by me.

I know pumpkin-mania is in full swing right now. But I’ve always been a butternut squash kind of girl. It’s my favorite Fall/Winter vegetable. And I’d choose it any day over pumpkin, even preferring squash pie over pumpkin pie.

My preference for butternut squash goes way back. In fact, you might even say it’s deeply rooted and steeped in family tradition. As my grandfather’s favorite crop to grow on our farm (we even named his Cadillac the “butternut mobile” because he used to drive around with so much butternut squash in the back seats!), butternut squash was a staple in my house growing up. We hardly even gave pumpkin a passing glance.

So FYI – you can expect to see more recipes here using butternut squash than pumpkin. I hope you’re cool with that.

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Fried Sage and Halloumi | www.floatingkitchen.net

This Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Fried Sage and Halloumi is one of those blissfully uncomplicated dishes that you’ll find yourself repeating over and over again. Just toss all the ingredients for the soup base into a big pot and let it rip. Easy peasy.

The apple provides an additional level of sweetness that pairs exceptionally well with the butternut squash. I just love adding apples to all kinds of dishes this time of year. Both butternut squash and apples can so easily transition between savory and sweet dishes. The possibilities are kind of endless.

I have a rule about puréed soups: they should never be naked. So I fried up some sage leaves (aren’t they the prettiest!?!?) and cubed Halloumi cheese to be used as toppings. Halloumi is a fabulous salty, mild cheese that can withstand the heat (it’s perfect for grilling, too!), and if you haven’t tried it yet, you should change that ASAP.

If you try out this recipe for Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Fried Sage and Halloumi, let me know! And what other soups are you craving this time of year? I typically make at least one big pot of soup each week, and I’d love to hear about some of your favorites!

Cheers,

Liz

Recipe adapted from Foodess

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Fried Sage and Halloumi

Serves about 4

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup with Fried Sage and Halloumi

Ingredients

  • For the Soup
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 4 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
  • 1 large apple, peeled, cored and chopped
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. allspice
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream

  • For the Toppings
  • 3-4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 16-18 fresh sage leaves
  • 8 ounces Halloumi cheese, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1-2 tablespoons heavy cream

Instructions

  1. In a large heavy bottom pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients except for the heavy cream. Bring the soup to a boil. Then turn down the heat to maintain a simmer. Simmer, covered, for about 30-35 minutes or until the butternut squash is very tender. Remove the pot from the heat and set it aside to cool briefly.
  2. Purée the soup using an immersion blender until it's smooth. You can also use a regular blender, making sure to work in batches and being cautious while transferring hot liquids. Return the puréed soup to it's original pot and re-warm it over low heat. Stir in the heavy cream. Taste and add salt and additional black pepper, if desired. Keep the soup warm while you make the toppings.
  3. In a skillet over medium-high heat, warm enough olive oil to coat the bottom of the skillet. It doesn’t have to be very deep. Once the oil is hot, add the sage leaves and fry them for about 20 seconds per side, just until they are starting to crisp slightly. Don't allow them to turn dark brown. Place the fried sage leaves on a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Now add the cubed Halloumi cheese to the hot oil, working in batches if necessary. Fry the cheese about 20-30 seconds per side, until golden brown. Place the fried Halloumi cheese on a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
  4. To serve, ladle the warm soup into bowls. Top with a few fried sage leaves, fried Halloumi cheese cubes and a drizzle of heavy cream.
  5. Once cooled, the soup can be stored in an airtight container in your refrigerator for 2-3 days.
https://www.floatingkitchen.net/squash-and-apple-soup-with-fried-sage-and-halloumi/

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