Asparagus Spinach Coconut Soup | Dishin & Dishes

asparagus spinach coconut milk soup

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A couple of weekends ago, I was watching a cooking show where the hostess was making spring food and an asparagus soup recipe drew me in, except for the butter and heavy cream, both of which I adore, but could really do without on my hips, behind and other parts of my body, if you know what I mean.



If you are one of those tall, lanky thin people who don’t know what I mean….it means it puts WEIGHT on me for gosh sake. Count your blessings!

I decided to re-create the recipe in a healthier sense and oh boy! Mr. Wonderful has fallen in love with this soup!  And the added healthy bonus is just a plus!

Start out by chopping one large bunch of asparagus into one to two inch pieces. Also, chop up two stalks of celery along with one leek and 2 cloves of garlic. Now, if you’re one of those people who makes a face at the sound of the word “leek” be adventurous! Leeks have a more delicate flavor than their cousin the onion, so if you don’t like strong onion flavor or are cooking a dish that an onion might overpower (like this one!), try using a leek instead. To learn how to cut and wash them click here for my leek tutorial.

So to start cooking this soup, add two tablespoons of coconut oil or olive oil into a large pot.  When it’s melted and the heat is up to medium temperature, add in the asparagus, leek and celery and stir for about ten minutes.  Then add in the garlic and stir for one minute more.


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Now add in four cups of vegetable or chicken stock. To make your own chicken stock click here and to make your own vegetable stock, click here. It just might be easier than you think!


Photo Mar 28, 3 43 23 AM


Stir this all around a few times and simmer for about twenty minutes, stirring every five-seven minutes or so.

Then add in in four cups of spinach. I forgot to take a picture!

Now using a ladle, add in enough of this mixture to fill your blender about half way full.


blending hot soups



**IMPORTANT!!!  Any time you blend a hot liquid, let it cool a bit first and then only fill your blender no more than half way full! Remove the lid or the removable clear plastic insert to add things and cover with a dish towel to avoid steam explosions and burning!

Blending asparagus soup


Turn this on and pulse a few times and then turn it on high and let it completely blend until smooth, then pour it into a bowl or another large sauce pan and repeat with the remaining asparagus/spinach mixture until all is pureed.

Next, pour it back into a clean pot and gently heat again over medium heat.


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Add in one 13.5 ounce can of coconut (or light coconut) milk and stir and bring back to a simmer and simmer for about five minutes more letting it thicken up slightly.

If you prefer SUPER silky soup, pour through a fine sieve.


sieve strain asparagus soup


I usually skip this step, however, because it’s pretty smooth and I prefer to keep the tiny bits of fiber in for more health benefits!

Garnish with creme fraiche, or Greek yogurt  and some blanched tips of asparagus stalks for a beautiful presentation!


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I was worried Mr. Wonderful wouldn’t like this soup but he raved about it for days. I’m making some more tonight while asparagus low prices abound!

Happy Spring!

Asparagus Spinach Coconut Soup

 

Author:

Cuisine: Soup

  • Ingredients
  • 2 T. coconut oil (or olive oil)
  • 1 large bunch asparagus, ends trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 large leek, white and light green only, chopped and rinsed
  • 3 cups spinach
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 1 13.5 can light or regular coconut milk
  • ½ t. Kosher salt
  • ¼ t. ground black pepper
  1. In a large stockpot, heat the oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the asparagus, celery, and leek and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add garlic and stir for one minute
  4. Add the vegetable or chicken stock, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Add spinach and stir for 1 minute, just to wilt
  6. Working in batches, fill blender to half full with mixture. Take off plastic clear lid but leave on main lid of blender. Cover hole with a dish towel and quickly pulse a few times, then turn blender on and let run for 1 minute to puree well. Pour into a clean large sauce pan.
  7. Repeat with remaining mixture until all your original pot is pureed and in sauce pan.
  8. Add the coconut milk and simmer for another 2-3 minutes minutes.
  9. Season with salt and pepper and adjust to taste.
  10. Add the spinach to the soup and let wilt for about 1 minute. In batches, pour the soup into a blender and blend on high until smooth. (Alternatively, use an immersion blender and puree in the pot.) Stir well before transferring to 12 small teacups and serve hot.
  11. IMPORTANT: It’s important when blending hot liquids to only fill half full in blender and leave the top opening open to allow steam to release. Failure to do so can result in hot explosions and burning!

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Love asparagus and want MORE recipes featuring their lovely green stalks? Check out what other bloggers are offering for Food Network’s Spring Sensation Sides below!

The Lemon Bowl: 20 Asparagus Recipes for Spring
Feed Me Phoebe: White Asparagus with Herby Sabayon Sauce
Dishing with Divya: Mock Guacamole with Asparagus
Dishin & Dishes: Asparagus Spinach Coconut Soup
Creative Culinary: Grilled Asparagus with Garlic and Parmesan
Jeanette’s Healthy Living: Low Carb Pasta with Asparagus Pancetta and Pine Nuts
Weelicious: Italian Asparagus Sticks
The Heritage Cook: Asparagus Caprese Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Roasted Asparagus Nicoise
Red or Green: Spicy Roasted Asparagus & Leek Soup
Swing Eats: Roasted Fingerling Potatoes and Asparagus with Rosemary
The Cultural Dish: Asparagus Milanese
The Wimpy Vegetarian: Asparagus Carbonara with Garlic Crumbs
Taste with the Eyes: Savory Matzo Brei with Asparagus and Smoked Salmon
The Mom 100: It’s Simple Roasted Asparagus with Shallots and Parmesan
FN Dish: The Asparagus Motto: The Simpler, The Better

 

 

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Homemade Ravioli | Dishin & Dishes

Ravioli

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A few months back, I traveled to Michigan to stay with my Mom for a week who had just had surgery and help cook and clean and generally help Dad with whatever we needed to do to keep her planted on the couch all week.

While I was there, Mr. Wonderful made homemade ravioli.



Without me.

Seriously? I cook all week, every week for the man and he chooses the week that I’m away to make homemade ravioli?

Hmph.

Well, ever since he sent me those gloriously wonderful cell phone messages with photos of his homemade ravioli, I’ve wanted to make them again.


Ravioli_with_pesto_and_tomatoes.JPG




You know, as in, make them again since I would be AROUND to taste them?

So yesterday after church we knocked out a TON of them and they were SO good.

I have been wanting to play around with a ratio of semolina flour to regular flour since we first made pasta. I really like more of a “bite” to my pasta than the regular flour recipes offered and I believe I found the perfect ratio yesterday. Since we were making ravioli, we added in some olive oil to help it be pliable for filling and sealing and I played around with the filling recipe as well which turned out fabulous!

This brand of semolina flour is widely available at most stores and it is what I used.


red Mill Semolina flour


I made a double recipe as well, because if you’re going to go to all that trouble, why not freeze some for later? We laid them out on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper and froze them solid then popped them into freezer bags for an easy but delicious meal another night!

I also tried out a new toy I’d ordered, and I can’t tell you how convenient this Ravioli mold turned out to be.

Norpro ravioli mold


It is the perfect width for the noodles that rolled out of our KitchenAid pasta rollers. You can absolutely positively make ravioli without one of these but it’ll be a bit more work.

I just used a large bowl to make my dough in but you can start it on the counter.


Flour eggs pasta dough


I used one cup of semolina flour and two cups of all-purpose flour and whisked them together then cracked in two eggs (I doubled the recipe this time). Using a fork, mix the eggs together in the well they are sitting in, then add in 1/4 cup olive oil, and 1/2 cup of water right into the same well.

Pull the flour into the egg mixture with the fork a little at a time while mixing.

Continue to mix with the fork until it becomes workable for your hands then roll the dough around to get any loosed flour. If you need a tad more water, add it one tablespoon at a time until the dough is soft but not sticky.Turn it out onto a floured cutting board or clean counter top and knead it several times until it becomes smooth. Flatten it into a disk and wrap it in plastic wrap and let it sit for thirty minutes to let the glutens relax.

Follow this post for rolling out the dough.

 

We used our KitchenAid pasta roller attachment, but you could use a countertop roller or even a rolling pin, if you’re feeling ambitious. We first cut our disk into 4 equal sizes pieces and rolled out each one. The width of our pasta roller was absolutely perfect for the ravioli mold, and we only had to cut square corners (work the cut off sections back into the next piece of dough you use.

Ravioli makers

Roll the dough thin but not too thin. On our KitchenAid pasta rollers, we stopped on the #4 setting (On KitchenAid #1 is the thickest and #8 is the smallest).

We laid our ravioli mold (we have this one) next to the dough and leaving about ½ inch extra on the ends, we cut two pieces to fit.

Ravioli molds come in different sizes. The one we have makes the smaller ravioli (1 ½ inches each) but you can also buy them in larger sizes. I prefer the smaller ones for nite-size purposes, but I may have to buy the larger size as well!

Here is how a ravioli mold works. You lay your first layer of dough over top of the metal side.

The metal side has teeth outlining each ravioli square and all the way around the entire thing.

After the first layer of dough is on the metal piece, you gently place the plastic mold (with the round bubbles on the bottom) right on top of the dough and again, gently press down.

 

The plastic bubbles press the dough through the holes in the metal piece to form indentions in your dough for you to uniformly fill your ravioli.

I also put my herbed ricotta and spinach filling into a pastry bag to pipe it into the ravioli dimples I created with the plastic mold to help make the filling uniform in volume on each square. You could use a baggie with the corner cut off or even a spoon though.

To make the filling, dump a 15 ounce container of whole milk ricotta into a mixing bowl. Take about 6 cups of fresh spinach leaves and chop them up. Also, chop up about 8 basil leaves.Add a tablespoon of olive oil to a skillet and bring it up to medium heat. Add the spinach for only about a minute or two until it begins to wilt but is still bright green.

Remove it to the mixing bowl with the ricotta and add in the basil along with one cup of grated parmesan cheese, one beaten egg , a clove of chopped garlic and some salt and pepper.Mix it up really well and then spoon it into your baggie or piping bag.

Pipe it into the indentions on the bottom layer of pasta.

Take a pastry brush (or just use one finger) and brush water in between each line of ravioli, or anyplace that will be sealed for each ravioli.

Lay the top layer of dough over top.

Use a rolling pin to go over the entire thing, pressing down firmly.

This will cause the teeth to cut the ravioli through the dough. Don’t worry about flattening out the filling because the top that you are rolling over is going to be the BOTTOM of the ravioli and it should be flat.

Once you can clearly see the teeth all the way through the dough, Pull off the excess dough from the edges.

And then flip the metal piece upside down and give it a good shake a couple of times to dislodge the ravioli from the mold

A few of ours had to be helped by gently pressing them out but it left a little dent in the top of the ravioli.

Ugly ravioli makes me upset!

Not really. It still tastes fine.

To cook these, bring a large pot of water to boil. They only need about 3-4 minutes tops. I used a spider to gently stir them to make sure they didn’t stick to each other and then to lift them out into a bowl afterward. I also only boiled about a dozen at a time because you don’t want to overcrowd the pot.

We tossed them with homemade pesto I had in the freezer due to the enormous amounts of basil I grew last year. While the ravioli was in process, I added about 20 cherry tomatoes into my small iron skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil and cooked them until they were soft and the skin was blistering in places. It leant just the perfect amount of acidity to the richly filled ravioli and the pesto.


I am so excited to start experimenting with new fillings now like mushrooms, butternut squash, roasted vegetables and seafood.

Homemade pasta is so unbelievably delicious.

 

The Best Homemade Ravioli Ever

 

Author:

  • 1 c. semolina flour
  • 2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ t. salt
  • ¼ c. olive oil
  • ½ c. water
  • FOR THE FILLING:
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 (15 oz) container whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 6 c. fresh spinach leaves, chopped
  • 8 basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 c. parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 t. salt
  • ½ t. pepper
  • 1 c. basil pesto
  • 20 cherry tomatoes, blistered or ½ c. chopped sun-dried tomatoes
  1. Using a fork, mix the eggs together in the well they are sitting in, then add in ¼ cup olive oil, and ½ cup of water right into the same well.
  2. Pull the flour into the egg mixture with the fork a little at a time while mixing.
  3. Continue to mix with the fork until it becomes workable for your hands then roll the dough around to get any loosed flour. If you need a tad more water, add it one tablespoon at a time until the dough is soft but not sticky.
  4. Turn it out onto a floured cutting board or clean counter top and knead it several times until it becomes smooth.
  5. Flatten it into a disk and wrap it in plastic wrap and let it sit for thirty minutes to let the glutens relax.
  6. Unwrap your dough and cut it into 4 equal pieces
  7. Cover three of these with a bowl to prevent them from drying out. Then take the fourth one and kind of pull it out into a sort of rectangle. Sprinkle it with flour.
  8. Put your pasta attachment on or use your pasta roller set to the widest setting
  9. Run pasta through
  10. Take it out and fold it in half lengthwise and run it through again. (Fold the two short ends together).
  11. Take it out and fold it in half lengthwise and run it through again. (Fold the two short ends together).
  12. After your fourth time (on that setting), change the pasta roller to the next size smaller (setting 2 on the KitchenAid wheel). Run it through the first time just as it is, then three times more after that folding it in half again long ways after each run. Then change your roller setting one size smaller to 3.
  13. Continue on to number 8 setting.
  14. Cut dough into one foot sections
  15. Place dough over ravioli press and use metal insert to press indentions into bottom sheet of dough.
  16. When filling is done – pipe or spoon into each indention.
  17. Place top sheet of pasta over top and roll a rolling pin over top to cut.
  18. Empty onto cookie sheets lined with cornmeal
  1. Heat olive oil in large skillet and saute spinach until just bright green and wilted
  2. Add all other ingredients to large bowl and mix well.
  3. Use piping bag or teaspoon to fill indentions in ravioli
  1. Bring large pot of generously salted water to boil.
  2. Add ravioli (about 12-18 at a time)
  3. Let cook 3½-4 minutes
  4. Lift out with spider or slotted spoon
  5. Continue cooking until all are cooked
  1. Add one tablespoon of olive oil to hot skillet,
  2. Add about 20 cherry tomatoes and continue to stir until they collapse and begin to burst and brown, about 10 minutes.
  3. Mix pasta with pesto and tomatoes and toss.

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If you like this, check out what other wonderful food bloggers are making for Food Network’s Comfort Food Fest below!

Feed Me Phoebe: Sesame Soba Noodle Salad with Cabbage Slaw
The Mom 100: Creamy Goat Cheese and Spinach Linguine
The Cultural Dish: Homemade Pasta and Top 3 Light and Easy Pasta Recipes
Taste with the Eyes: A Unique Pasta Made of Black Beans – Gluten-Free, Lower-Carb
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Ravioli with Asparagus, Green Pea Sauce & Sauteed Scallops
Red or Green: Pasta Cacio e Pepe (pasta with pecorino & black pepper)
In Jennie’s Kitchen: Spaghetti Limone
Dishin & Dishes: The Best Homemade Ravioli Ever
FN Dish: 5 Back-Pocket Pastas That Always Have Your Back


How to make ravioli


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Pear, Blue Cheese, Walnut Salad

Photo Oct 22, 4 51 36 AM

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It seems salads get left out in the cold, so to speak, in the fall.

I love to make salads in the summer when it’s hot. I tend to utilize summer fruits like strawberries, blueberries and peaches in my salads along with some form of nut and shaved cheese.



This salad, however, calls on the produce of fall with the tartness of cranberries, the sweet juiciness of pears, and the sharp pungent bite of blue cheese that mimics the pungent fall air when leaves are piling up in damp corners.


Fall Salad with pear and blue cheese


Pears and blue cheese pair very well together. I always love a good blue with a drizzle of honey but the pears serve this purpose in the salad as well as a vinaigrette that is sweetened with a dollop of pure maple syrup. I think you could make this an easy main dish by grilling up some marinated pork loin and laying sliced  medallions over top of it alongside the pear slices.


Pear walnut blue cheese arugula salad


Come taste fall with me in the form of salad!

Start out by making the dressing. I always find the easiest way to make dressing is in a mason jar, tossing in all the ingredients, screwing the lid on tight, and shaking it to combine everything just before pouring over the salad.


blue mason jar


Here are your necessary ingredients for this dressing.

A shallot, Dijon mustard (I love coarse ground), apple cider vinegar, pure maple syrup, salt, pepper and olive oil.


salad dressing ingredients


Finely chop the shallot and add it into the jar. If you don’t want to fuss with shallots, just use a red onion. Add in the rest of the ingredients, and just before serving, pop the lid on the jar and shake it like the dickens for about 20 seconds.


salad dressing


Now for the salad. I like a nice peppery type of green mixed with spinach for this salad. Baby arugula works wonderful as does baby kale. Measure out two cups of each and just mix them together in a large bowl.


arugula


Slice up your red onion as thinly as you can and add it in with the lettuce. Toss it again. Now evenly divide this all onto four dinner plates. Slice up two pears (I like Bosc) and layer four of the slices over each salad. Try to get four to six slices out of one half of the pear. Fan them out nice and pretty over the salad and then scatter about a tablespoon each of the blue cheese, candied walnuts and cranberries over top of each.


Photo Oct 22, 4 51 36 AM


Drizzle your dressing over each salad or simply put a nice ladle in the mason jar and let your guests or family add their own.

I love this salad in fall. Alongside a pork roast, pork loin or even a good juicy steak, this salad should not be neglected just because it’s cold.

Never neglect fall produce. It’s just too delectable.

Salad for Fall – Pear, Bleu Cheese, Walnut Salad

 

Author:

Recipe type: Salad

  • 2 t. Dijon mustard
  • ¼ c. apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ c. pure maple syrup
  • ¼ t. kosher salt
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • ¼ c. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small shallot, finely diced (or substitute red onion)
  • 4 cups arugula
  • ½ medium red onion, sliced thinly
  • 2 bosc pears, sliced thinly
  • ½ c. dried cranberries
  • ½ c. candied walnuts or pecans, roughly chopped or whole to liking
  • ½ c. crumbled bleu cheese
  1. Using a mason jar or container with lid, add all ingredients and shake.(easiest method!).
  2. Alternatively you can combine all ingredients except the shallot and olive oil in bowl and whisk well to combine. Slowly drizzle in olive oil to emulsify. Add in shallot and stir.
  1. Place walnuts and sugar in a skillet over medium heat, stirring constantly until the sugar dissolves into a light brown liquid and coats the walnuts. Remove walnuts from skillet, and spread them out on a sheet of aluminum foil to cool.
  1. In large bowl, add the arugula,spinach and toss.
  2. Divide among plates and layer 4 slices of pear over each and a few red onion slices. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon (each) of walnuts and dried cranberries over each salad and some crumbled bleu cheese. Drizzle with dressing.

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Want to see what other fantastic bloggers are cooking up with spinach? Check out Food Network’s Fall Fest extravaganza below!

Feed Me Phoebe: Healthy Creamed Spinach
The Heritage Cook: Fresh Spinach with Maple Vinegar Vinaigrette
Big Girls, Small Kitchen: Za’atar Roasted Salmon with Greens
Blue Apron Blog: Saag Paneer at Home
Weelicious: Spinach Cake Muffins
Virtually Homemade: Creamy Spinach and Chicken Casserole
Haute Apple Pie: Parmesan Spinach, Broccoli and Chicken Bake
Red or Green: Spinach-Walnut Pesto on Bruschetta with Fried Egg
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Spinach with Sausage, Peppers and Tomatoes
The Sensitive Epicure: Spanakopita Minus the -Opita
Taste With The Eyes: Spinach and Chickpeas in a Bengali Mustard Sauce
Domesticate Me: Warm Spinach Salad with Bacon Vinaigrette and a Fried Egg
In Jennie’s Kitchen: Crispy Spinach Latkes
Devour: How to Make Spinach Gnocchi
Dishin & Dishes: Pear, Walnut and Blue Cheese Salad with Arugula and Baby Spinach
FN Dish: Eat Your Spinach Sides

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