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Mostly Vegetarian (+butter) – Butternut & Apple Soup, Indian String Beans, Apple & Cabbage

I am having my lovely neighbors over for dinner, and am making vegetarian food. Since I have been planning and thinking about this all day, I am sharing with you.

Butternut & Apple soup (recipe source)
– melt 2 tablespoons butter
– finely chop 1 onion, and throw that in the butter
– cut squash in half, scoop out seeds, remove skin, and cut up (well, this was what my recipe said, but I suspect life would be easier if I had just popped the squash in a pan with some water and pre-cooked it in the oven)
– by now, your onions are lovely and translucent, so add a teaspoon or so of curry powder and cook a bit more, stirring often, but also taking time to dice one apple
– add about 3 cups of stock, squash, apple, and bring to a boil.
– cut up 3-4 sage leaves, add to soup
– reduce heat, cover, simmer for a while
– now here is where I have philosophical differences with cookbooks. The cookbook has you taking the soup and putting it in a blender so everything is smooth. Then it has you cleaning the pot to remove any traces of foam, and slowly reheating the soup. In my world, that’s a big no. I don’t have a blender. If I did, it still wouldn’t be worth the mess, besides — I usually make more then one blender’s worth of soup at a time. In my world, you cook the soup for hours instead of minutes, preferably for more than one day, and the ingredients get mushy enough to become homogeneous all on their own (and anything you don’t want homogeneous, goes in nearer serving time).
– So — cook, cook, cook
– Season to taste with salt, pepper, worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, and a dash of thyme (the last three were not in the cookbook, but were tasty additions).
– when the liquid got a bit low (cause I forgot to re-cover the pot while I made this entry initially), I also added some whole milk and apple cider.
– when serving, top with a sour cream flavored with curry powder and horseradish sauce (but not too much, because the black pepper in the soup actually makes it kinda spicy, and the cream should cool things off)

Indian String Beans (recipe lost… from allrecipes.com?)
– melt ghee
– fry black mustard seeds until the pop a bit (I also fry a bit of asofoetida)
– add sliced garlic
– add parboiled string beans

Chinese Cabbage (recipe from Meghan, a friend who is neither vegetarian nor sushi)
– Melt 2-3 tablespoons of butter over as high a heat as will not burn the butter
– throw in a couple cloves of chopped garlic, and then almost immediately
– toss in shredded apple and shredded chinese cabbage
– season with pepper
– cook until almost mushy, but not quite

ETA: this was even more tasty with some pepper, soy sauce, and a splash of red wine… and might have been good with a teensy bit of white vinegar as well)

I forgot to eat breakfast, and now it is too close to dinner time to snack much. Buggery.

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