Though many associate farm-fresh produce with the summer, the fall brings hardy root vegetables, kale, and squash. Make the most of the season with our hearty, comforting recipes.
Our Chicken Pot Pie with Harvest Vegetables puts the autumn harvest front and centre, replacing the classic mirepoix (onion, carrots, and celery) with root vegetables. Tender bites of chicken are complemented with diced butternut squash, celery root, and parsnip in a creamy bechamel sauce baked underneath flaky puff pastry.
Our Harvest Butternut Squash Soup is simple to make, and can easily scale up or down depending on how much squash you have on hand. The comforting aromas of cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg pair perfectly with the earthy sweetness of the butternut squash in this creamy soup. You can try making this soup with other varieties of winter squash, such as acorn, kabocha or hubbard. A garnish of pepitas adds a satisfying crunch.
CHICKEN POT PIE WITH HARVEST VEGETABLES
1 tbsp canola oil
1 lb (0.5 kg) boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup diced onion
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 cup cubed peeled butternut squash (1/2 inch)
1 cup cubed peeled celery root (1/2 inch)
1 cup cubed peeled parsnip (1/2 inch)
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tbsp salted butter
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 cup no-salt-added chicken broth
2 cups homogenized milk
1/2 cup frozen green peas
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 pkg frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 large egg
1 tsp water
Preheat oven to 325°F.
Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add chicken and sauté until cooked through. Transfer chicken to a plate; set aside.
Add onion to Dutch oven and sauté over medium heat until softened, about 2 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add squash, celery root, parsnip and bay leaf; sauté for 10 minutes. Add wine and cook, stirring, until wine is almost evaporated. Add butter and flour; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add broth and cook, stirring, until thickened. Add milk, 1/2 cup at a time, cooking and stirring constantly until thickened. Remove from heat; remove and discard bay leaf. Return chicken to Dutch oven. Add peas, parsley, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper; stir to combine. Spoon chicken mixture into a greased 9×13 inch baking dish.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out pastry to fit baking dish. Place on top of chicken mixture. Whisk together egg and water until blended. Brush pastry with egg mixture. Cut vents in pastry to allow steam to escape. Bake until chicken mixture is bubbly and pastry is golden brown, about 50 to 55 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Yield: Serves 8.
HARVEST BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP
1 tbsp (15 mL) oil
2 cups (500 mL) chopped onions
1/2 tsp (2 mL) cinnamon
1/4 tsp (1 mL) ginger
1/4 tsp (1 mL) freshly ground nutmeg
6 cups (1.5 L) cubed peeled butternut squash
4 cups (1 L) canned chicken broth
1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
1/4 cup (50 mL) chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 cup (125 mL) salted roasted pepitas, optional
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onions, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg; saute for 2 minutes. Add squash, broth and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until squash is tender, about 20 minutes. Puree soup in batches in a blender. Soup may be prepared to this point and refrigerated for up to 24 hours. Return soup to saucepan and heat to serving temperature. Stir in cilantro. Top with pepitas. Serve immediately.
Yield: Serves 6
Cook’s Note: Pepitas are pumpkin seeds with their white hulls removed. They are dark green in colour and found in specialty stores and the bulk foods section of grocery stores.
ATCO Blue Flame Kitchen’s column on healthy eating for busy families runs Wednesdays in the Calgary Herald’s food section. For tips on cooking, food safety or household matters, email [email protected] or visit us at ATCOBlueFlameKitchen.com.
Video: How to make pumpkin spice treats at home (Global News)