Winter Pumpkin Soup with Parmesan Croutons & Bacon Chips
Recipe by Chef Jennifer Hill Booker
Any type of winter pumpkin or squash, such as Sugar Pie pumpkin or butternut squash, can be used for this soup. Just remove the seeds, cut it into wedges, drizzle with olive oil, and roast in a 350° F oven. The roasting softens the vegetable and reinforces its natural sweetness. The addition of stock and cream gives the soup a velvety smoothness, and the croutons and bacon chips add a nice crunch.
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 slices of Hickory smoked bacon, cut into 1-inch strips
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1⁄2 medium white onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 cups roasted pumpkin, mashed, or unsweetened pumpkin puree
2 1⁄2 cups chicken stock
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1⁄2 cup heavy cream
2 cups stale bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1⁄4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1⁄4 teaspoon red chili flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
In a large stockpot over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the bacon and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, then add the rosemary and cook an additional 4 to 5 minutes, or until the bacon is golden and crispy and the rosemary leaves are lightly browned.
Drain the bacon and rosemary on a paper towel. Remove the rosemary leaves from the stems and roughly chop the leaves, discarding the stems. Set the rosemary aside. Discard all but 1 tablespoon bacon grease from the stockpot. Set the bacon chips aside while you make the pumpkin soup.
Add the butter, onion, and garlic to the bacon grease in the stockpot and cook over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, or until the onion is translucent. Stir often to loosen any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add the mashed pumpkin and the chicken stock, and season lightly with salt and pepper.
Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat to low, and cook 15 to 20 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream just before you serve; do not let the soup boil once the cream has been added.
Preheat the oven to 400° F.
To make the parmesan croutons, toss the bread, olive oil, cheese, chili flakes, and black pepper together in a large bowl. Spread the bread mixture onto a sheet pan and bake 5 to 6 minutes, or until the bread cubes are golden brown.
Serve the soup in warm bowls topped with croutons, bacon chips, and the chopped rosemary.
Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent by Jennifer Hill Booker, © 2014
Jennifer Hill Booker, used by permission of the publisher, Pelican Publishing Company, Inc.
~Enjoy this Georgia Grown ‘ Pick Keep Cook’ crop in a Fresh New Way~
Collard Greens Salad with Apple Cider Vinaigrette
recipe by: Chef Jennifer Booker
1 bunch collard greens, washed
1/2 cup Pecan oil
1 tsp. sea salt
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 small onion, sliced
3 cloves raw garlic, minced
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
½ tsp. black pepper
De-stem and chop the collard greens into long strips. Place strips in a large bowl. Pour Pecan oil on collard strips and sprinkle on salt. Massage the oil and salt into the strips with your hands until all pieces are well coated. Whisk together apple cider vinegar, onions, garlic, red pepper flakes and ground pepper. Pour apple cider vinegar dressing over the collard green strips. Let marinate in the refrigerator for at least 3-4 hours, but overnight is best. Serve chilled or room temperature.
Now that I have your attention . . . here are 6 Great Health Benefits of Eating Beets!
1. Beets are nature’s Viagra
Seriously. One of the first known uses of beets was by the ancient Romans, who used them medicinally as an aphrodisiac. And that’s not just urban legend – science backs it up. Beets contain high amounts of boron, which is directly related to the production of human sex hormones.
2. Beets are high in many vitamins and minerals
Potassium, magnesium, fiber, phosphorus, iron; vitamins A, B & C; beta-carotene, beta-cyanine; folic acid. These are but a few of the many nutrients, vitamins and minerals that can be found in beets and beet greens. Beets are particularly beneficial to women whom are pregnant, as the vitamin B and iron are very beneficial to new growth cells during pregnancy and replenishing iron in the woman’s body.
3. Beets cleanse the body
They are a wonderful tonic for the liver, works as a purifier for the blood, and can prevent various forms of cancer. Nuff said, right? Tastes good and prevents cancer? Sign me up!
4. Beets help your mental health
Beets contain betaine, the same substance that is used in certain treatments of depression. It also contains trytophan, which relaxes the mind and creates a sense of well-being, similar to chocolate. Beets can also lower your blood pressure. So if you’re already steamed about not eating beets, you can get a two-fer by diving into them right away.
5. Beets are used as a stomach acid tester
How in the world does that work? Glad you asked. If you are eating a lot of beets or beet juice, and your pee turns pink, guess what? You have low stomach acid. Pee still clear? Ratchet it up and get juicing (use the greens too)! Nutritionists use beets and beet juice to test stomach acid levels, so stay ahead of the curve by adding beets to your diet now.
6. Beets are a high source of energy
At the same time they are low in calories and high in sugar (although the sugar is released into your system gradually, as opposed to chocolate). Very few foods found in the natural world are as beneficial as beets in this regard.
Beets are a wonderful addition to any dietary need. With their high volume of nutrients, delicious taste, and multitude of uses, anyone can jump right into beets without missing a beat.
Looking for a Delicious Beet Recipe? Pick up a copy of Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent, at YourResidentGourmet.net
article from fullcircle.com
photo credit Deborah Whitlaw Llewllyn
Join Chef Jennifer Booker as she signs her debut cookbook:
Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent
Thursday, January 29th, 2015 6pm
Georgia Honey: Nature’s Energy Booster
The benefits of honey go beyond its great taste. A great natural source of carbohydrates which provide strength and energy to our bodies, honey is known for its effectiveness in instantly boosting the performance, endurance and reduce muscle fatigue of athletes. Its natural sugars play an important role in preventing fatigue during exercise. The glucose in honey is absorbed by the body quickly and gives an immediate energy boost, while the fructose is absorbed more slowly providing sustained energy. It is known that honey has also been found to keep levels of blood sugar fairly constant compared to other types of sugar.
Try this Delicious recipe featuring Georgia Honey, Yum!!
Honey & Lime Chicken Strips
Recipe by Chef Jennifer Hill Booker
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Georgia honey
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 jalapeño, finely chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons Pecan oil
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice + 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons grated lime zest + 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
12 chicken tenders or 2 large chicken breasts, cut into strips
1 tablespoon Georgia honey
Lime wedges, for serving
Preheat the electric grill to 400*F.
In a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, honey, ginger, jalapeño, cumin, cayenne, salt, pepper, Pecan oil, 2 teaspoons of lime juice, and lime zest.
Add the chicken to the bowl and toss to coat.
In a small bowl, mix the honey with the remaining lime juice and lime zest. Set aside.
Add the chicken to the grill and cook until golden brown, about 6 minutes; turning after 3 minutes. The chicken’s internal temperature such reach 165*F.
Remove the chicken from the grill and drizzle with the lime honey.
Serve the chicken with fresh lime wedges.
Ring in the New Year with
Black Eyed Pea Salad-a French Twist on on Southern Favorite!
Black Eyed Pea Salad
Yields 6 servings
4 cups black eyed peas, cooked and chilled
¼ cup yellow onion, chopped
¼ cup red bell pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon honey
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon Sea salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
½ cup apple cider vinegar
Combine the garlic, thyme, honey, red pepper flakes, salt, black pepper and vinegar in a large bowl.
Slowly whisk in the olive oil. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
Add the black eyed peas, onion, red bell pepper, and green bell pepper.
Stir to coat with the vinaigrette.
Chill the Black Eyed Pea Salad for at least 4 hours.
About our author:
Chef Jennifer Hill Booker
Building a culinary foundation on her Mississippi roots and a farm-to-table concept, Chef Jennifer Hill Booker creates a unique take on contemporary Southern cooking. Combining agrarian approaches and down-home style with classical-French techniques, Booker reinvents Southern cuisine. These 135 recipes are the culmination of summers and holidays spent in Charleston, Mississippi, at the family farm.
Available at Barnes & Nobles, A Capella Bookstore, and YourResidentGourmet.com
Chef Jennifer Booker
Born in Michigan, Jennifer Hill Booker grew up in Florida, attended college in Oklahoma, and has lived in Europe, but it’s the South that has her heart. Booker has a bachelor of arts degree in organizational communication from the University of Tulsa, an associate’s degree in applied science-culinary arts from Oklahoma State University, and a cuisine de base certificate from Le Cordon Bleu Paris. She is the executive chef and owner of Your Resident Gourmet, LLC, a personal chef and catering company.
A former culinary instructor for Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Atlanta and a culinary arts program director for the Grayson Technical Program at Grayson High School, Booker is qualified to write about proper cooking techniques, flavor combinations, and food pairings. She teaches culinary technique classes at Williams-Sonoma, is a contributing columnist for Basil Magazine, and serves as the host of the magazine’s radio show. She has written articles and recipes for Jezebel, Atlanta Social Season, Vegetarian Times, Our Town Magazine, UrbanSocialites, Southern Seasons Magazine, ESSENCE Magazine, SOLO Woman, Sister2Sister Magazine, and Points North Atlanta.
In order to keep her culinary skills sharp, she serves as the Metropolitan Cooking and Entertaining Show’s executive celebrity chef for cooking personalities Paula Deen and the Neelys. She has made guest appearances at Chef Joe Randall’s Cooking School and the Chefs of the World: A Taste of Fame annual event. She also volunteers her time and resources to the Africa’s Children’s Fund. Booker lives in Lilburn, Georgia, where she feels right at home.
Perfect gift to bring in the New Year!
Get Your Copy!
Local Chef, Jennifer Hill Booker, offers a contemporary take on Southern cooking in “Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes With a French Accent” (Pelican, $27).
Noon-4 p.m. Dec. 27 at Williams-Sonoma, at The Forum
5145 Peachtree Parkway, Norcross, and get a signed copy.
La CUCINA AFRO-AMERICANA: dalla GEORGIA, USA con SAAFON al Salone del Gusto / Terra Madre a Torino,
24 Ottobre 2014, Chef JENNIFER HILL BOOKER di Atlanta esprime la cucina delle origini del Sud-Est USA, con
prodotti autenticamente locali ed organici. E’ promotrice di Slow Food Atlanta.
Nello scenario del SALONE DEL GUSTO e TERRA MADRE a Torino il più grande Food Festival del mondo, presenziano
molti seguaci anche statunitensi di questa grande famiglia Slow Food: contadini, agricoltori e chef, soci dei vari e distinti
capitoli Slow Food USA, di diversi Stati e regioni. Il Family Farming, concetto di una gastronomia fortemente basata
sui prodotti locali “farm-to-table”, trova riscontro nel Sud-Est USA e nella squisita leggendaria cucina del Sud, ove la
storia l’ha maggiormente caratterizzata. Nel Sud USA storicamente il cibo è dipeso dal lavoro degli schiavi neri e dalle
forti influenze di nativi indigeni, di Francesi, Spagnoli e West African. Molte pietanze del SOUTHERN FOOD – infatti –
sono nate stagionalmente, per necessità con prodotti disponibili quali spezie, verdure, pesce fresco appena pescato
e selvaggina. L’agricoltura si basava principalmente sul lavoro nei campi degli schiavi neri Africani, molti ovviamente
antenati delle generazioni attuale di contadini, coltivatori e chef. Gli Africani giunti in America portarono con sé una
pletora di conoscenze in campo agricolo, fondamento di come la giovane America riuscì poi a sopravvivere. Il sistema
alimentare americano – dal riso allo zucchero – fu coltivato e raccolto grazie alla conoscenza della popolazione nera,
che sapeva quando e come piantare, come irrigare e come creare sistemi d’irrigazione; necessità del suolo e cosa
aggiungere, cioè fertilizzante organico (cavallo, mucca, pollame). Tutto ciò era patrimonio dei contadini neri africani. Il
cibo è molto di più di una semplice merce: è cultura, gusto e tante cose collegate alla storia. A Terra Madre è interessante
vedere contadini e cuochi della Georgia, USA scambiare idee con colleghi del Kenya per la coltivazione dell’okra. E’ una
piattaforma di scambio sulla biodiversità del cibo tra paesi che preservano le tradizioni e la cultura del cibo.
Georgia, lavora con coltivatori e chef del Sud-Est USA e presenzia a Terra Madre organizzando
al contempo un evento culinario. Uno dei due protagonisti chef neri è JENNIFER HILL BOOKER
laureata al Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts di Parigi, educatrice gastronomica al Le
Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts Atlanta, ed autrice del suo primo testo FIELD PEAS TO FOIS
GRAS: SOUTHERN RECIPES WITH A FRENCH ACCENT, da Ottobre in uscita in America. Nel libro
due capitoli sono dedicati all’arte dei cocktail e del fare conserve, pratica che si sta
estinguendo. Il libro GOIN’ DOWN SOUTH: A CHEF’S JOURNEY HOME invece é vera e propria
ode alla sua formazione agricola. Le radici di Jennifer affondano in Mississippi, ove sin da
bambina ha intuito che si sarebbe dedicata alla cucina. Cresciuta in una famiglia di grandi
cuochi, curiosando in cucina ed assaggiando ricette di famiglia, ha costruito sull’esperienza
culturale il suo bagaglio professionale. Il training a Le Cordon Bleu le consente di proporre
ricette con tecniche tramandate da generazioni, proponendo sia lo Scotch Egg ma anche e
soprattutto una Black Eyed Pea salad, uno Sweet Potato muffin o un Catfish fritto tipici del Sud USA.
Jennifer è anche una Personal Chef: Executive Chef e proprietaria di Your Resident Gourmet LLC, azienda di Personal
Chef e Catering Company da 21 anni. Chef Jennifer organizza Culinary Therapy for The Cottages on Mountain Creek, a
Sandy Springs in Georgia USA – centro riabilitativo mentale; ha stretto una partnership con Hard Rock Café-Atlanta per la
serie Celebrity Chef of the Hard Rock Café, ed è Esperta Culinaria per Williams-Sonoma. E’ socia di SLOW FOOD Atlanta.
GULLAH GEECHEE, anello tra passato e presente della cultura e tradizioni Afro
Americane. I Gullah – discendenti degli ex schiavi Africani – vivono nella regione Low
Country degli Stati della South Carolina e Georgia, includendo l’area costiera con le
pianure e le Sea Islands. Sono anche chiamati Geechee. A RICEBORO, nel sud dello
Stato sorge il Centro Gullah Geechee celebra arte, storia, cultura tradizioni artigiane,
musicali ed agricole. Tra le esperienze nel centro: cucina Gullah a base di riso,
agricoltura e pesca, con influssi dell’Africa Occidentale e Centrale. Geechee Kunda a
RICEBORO si trova ove un tempo sorgevano le Plantation di riso, cotone ed indigo. Tra gli eventi autunnali al GEECHEE
KUNDA il RICE RIDDUM & N’RIME ad Ottobre, a Novembre la raccolta della canna da zucchero, la cottura dello sciroppo,
l’artigianato con dimostrazioni e musica. Tra le presentazioni al centro anche LOW COUNTRY SEAFOOD BOIL con pesce
fresco. www.geecheekunda.com –
INFO: TRAVELSOUTH USA – c/o Thema Nuovi Mondi Srl – firstname.lastname@example.org