What I’ve been cooking

After a summer of avocado soups and cold pasta, I embraced fall with full force and learned about the beauty that is squash. I made butternut squash soup, roasted acorn squash with brown sugar, and kubocha squash risotto. B’s desi taste buds didn’t take to the sweetness of fall squashes, but I fell deeply in love with the season.

Well, the leaves have been raked and our farmer’s market dwindled down to its winter size. The good news is that our mushroom vendor is back for the season, so I have been exploring the great variety of mushroom harvests she is selling. I made a mushroom soup inspired by the canned cream of mushroom soup I devoured as a child. I wanted to do away with the thick cream (and sodium!) and create a soup that accentuated the mushrooms and warmed the body.

I found an Anthony Bourdain recipe that turned out great (of course). I cut down on the butter, used my mix of mushrooms from the market, and substituted red wine vinegar for sherry. I also added a touch of milk at the end to liven up the grayish color:

It was really tasty and served as a great lunch for work.

I also had friends over for snacks last week and decided to make a savory bread pudding out of a stale loaf of bread. I used a New York Times recipe sans cheese. I used up some of the sage I recently bought too, and cut up the pudding into bite-size pieces for the party:

I should note that I also just bought The Essential New York Times, which updates many classic recipes for our worldly and health conscious palates. I can’t wait to try out recipes and share them here.

Finally, I made a Betty Crocker recipe (recipe not online) of thumbprint cookies for the same party. The inspiration came from a jar of strawberry jam that has been lurking at the back of my fridge. The cookies actually came out wonderful, and I will be making them time and again for friends and parties.

The harmony of butter, almond, and jam made this one a crowd pleaser:

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