autumn squash & israeli couscous

ingredients (serves 2 as a main dish):
2 cups butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch cubes
coarse kosher salt
fresh ground black pepper
1 Tbs olive oil
2 cups boiling water
1 1/2 cups Israeli couscous
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/2 tsp curry powder (optional)
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
dressing ingredients:
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 Tbs orange zest
juice of 1 orange
1 Tbs thawed orange juice from concentrate
2 Tbs water
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
2 garlic cloves, crushed (less is more)
2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

preheat oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit. place cubed butternut squash on a shallow baking pan. season with salt and pepper; drizzle with olive oil. roast for 35-45 minutes until tender. cool.
couscous: boil 2 cups of water in medium saucepan, add couscous, cover and simmer for 8-10 minutes. remove from heat, fluff with fork. in a large bowl, combine the prepared couscous, cranberries, green onions, curry powder, basil and roasted butternut squash.
dressing directions: whisk all ingredients together in a medium bowl, except the olive oil. whisk in the olive oil until blended. toss dressing with the couscous mixture, season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve at room temperature, or chill until ready to serve.

adapted from a recipe found in baltimore magazine.


mango sticky, yummy rice

this is sort of a thai dessert/dish that my sister and her husband make sometimes. and so i had to try it. and the results were amazing. ingredients (makes 4 servings):
1 1/2 cups glutinous (sweet) rice
 --- i used jasmine rice from trader joe's
1/3 cups well-stirred canned unsweetened coconut milk
--- i did about 1/2 cup
3 Tbs granulated sugar

1/4 tsp salt

2 large ripe Manila mangoes (or 1 large ripe South American mango)

To prepare the sticky rice: (what i did) rinse jasmine rise 4-5 times in water or until water runs clear. cook in rice cooker with enough time for the rice to cool to room temperature (about 30-1 hr after cooking time).
meanwhile, in a small saucepan bring coconut milk to a slow simmer, stirring constantly (hard boiled coconut milk will curdle). Add sugar and salt; stirring until sugar is dissolved; remove from heat. Keep mixture warm. Reserve approximately 1/3 to 1/2 cup coconut-milk sauce; refrigerate until cool and thicken slightly.

Just before serving, peel mangoes and then thinly slice by cutting lengthwise through flesh to the stone; discard the stone. NOTE: Peel the mangoes carefully so as not to bruise the fruit. Slice in half as close to the seed as possible, then slice each half into 1/2-in (1-cm) slices.
Serve at room temperature. Drizzle reserved coconut-milk sauce over the rice. Arrange mango slices around the rice. Garnish with edible flowers or mint if desired.
NOTE: The finished dish can be kept, covered at room temperature for 6 to 8 hours. Do not refrigerate or the rice will harden!


autumn apple streusel pie

i got a new pie pan!!! and made a nice autumn pie for my husband and nice friends :)
ingredients (for one 9 inch pie pan):
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 1/2 Tbs all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 pounds cooking apples - peeled, cored and thinly sliced (i used macintosh apples)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 (15 ounce) package refrigerated piecrusts (yes, i didn't take the time to make my own crust)
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup regular oats, uncooked
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 Tbs butter or margarine

Combine first 5 ingredients; set aside.
Fit pie crust into a lightly greased 9-inch pie plate according to package directions; fold edges under, and crimp. Spoon apple mixture into pie crust, and cover with aluminum foil.
BAKE at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until apples are crisp-tender.
Combine 1/2 cup brown sugar and next 3 ingredients; cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture is crumbly. Uncover pie, and sprinkle with streusel topping. Bake 30 more minutes or until browned.taken by my naomi friend.

courtesy of this lovely lady