Kay Wheeler Moore

Welcome to my blog

Hello. . .

The Newfangled Country Gardener is for anyone who has a garden, would like to have a garden, or who simply enjoys eating the garden-fresh way. I don't claim to be an expert; in this blog I'm simply sharing some of the experiences my husband and I have in preparing food that is home-grown.

About the author

Kay Wheeler Moore is the author of a new cookbook, Way Back in the Country Garden, that features six generations of recipes that call for ingredients that are fresh from the garden. With home gardening surging in popularity as frugal people become more resourceful, this recipe collection and the stories that accompany it ideally will inspire others to cook the garden-fresh way and to preserve their own family food stories as well. The stories in this book center around the Three Red-Haired Miller Girls (Kay's mother and aunts) who grew up in Delta County, TX, with their own backyard garden so lavish that they felt as though they were royalty after their Mama wielded her kitchen magic on all that was homegrown. Introduced in Kay's previous book, Way Back in the Country, the lively Miller Girls again draw readers into their growing-up world, in which a stringent economic era--not unlike today's tight times--saw people turn to the earth to put food on the table for their loved ones. The rollicking yarns (all with recipes attached) have love, family, and faith as common denominators and show how food evocatively bonds us to our life experiences.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Thinking outside the box brings forth comforting Curried Acorn Squash Soup

Acorn squash—just so many things you can cook with it, right? For years Hubby has done a great job of sawing those large green orbs in two, dotting them with butter and brown sugar, and baking them on trays in the oven—then scooping out the sweet, tender insides for us to enjoy.

But when I saw a recipe for Curried Acorn Squash Soup, I was intrigued. A new twist on the baked variety—seasoned with curry and nutmeg, then topped with bacon bits. Had to try, had to try.

The recipe book’s comment on this soup (source: Taste of Home Thanksgiving Recipe Cards again) mentioned that this dish was easy to make and that it kept well. All true. The smooth, unique combination of the squash and the spices was delightful. This would make a great first course for a sit-down Christmas dinner. For us it became a wonderfully warming treat on the night this week that the winter storm blew in and the frightful-sounding gales outside made indoors around our kitchen table a comforting place to be.

Thinking out of the box for you, acorn squash! You do yourself proud in this mellow, interesting soup.

Curried Acorn Squash Soup

3 medium acorn squash, halved and seeded
1/2 cup chopped onion
3 to 4 teaspoons curry powder
2 tablespoons butter
3 cups chicken brown (I used low-sodium variety)
1 cup half-and-half cream (can use whole milk, 2 percent, or skim)
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
salt (or salt substitute) and pepper to taste
crumbled cooked bacon (I used turkey bacon bits)

Place squash, cut side down, in a greased, shallow baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until the squash is almost tender. In a large saucepan sauté onion and curry powder in butter until onion is tender. Remove from the heat; set aside. Carefully scoop out squash; add pulp to saucepan. Gradually add the broth. Cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes or until squash is very tender. Cool slightly. In a food processor or blender process the squash mixture until smooth; return to the saucepan. Stir in the cream, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Cook over low heat until heated through (do not boil). Garnish with bacon if desired. Makes 4-6 servings.

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