Fall is here, so soup is on!

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Hi All! It’s Nicole, Annette’s web-manager and friend. While Annette has been enjoying gorgeous weather in Italy, I’ve been swealtering in Atlanta. However, this weekend, it finally took a slight, cooler turn, and I am officially ready for soup season. In my opinion, there is nothing better than preparing a big pot of soup, smelling it simmer, and enjoying it throughout the week.

Of course, when looking for a great fall soup, I turned to Annette’s archives. And of course, I found exactly what I was looking for: butternut squash soup.

 

Butternut Squash Soup
Serves 8

You will need:

– 1 cup cubed butternut squash
– 1 cup rough chopped yellow onion
– 1 cup cubed carrots
– 1 cup cubed celery
– 1 cup cubed parsnips
– 1/2 cup cubed baby red potatoes
– 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
– 2 cups kale, shredded
– 1/4 cup olive oil
– 1 15 oz can of white beans
– 1 quart organic vegetable stock
– salt and pepper

To prepare:

Peel and cube squash, onion, carrots, celery, parsnips, and red potato into 1-inch cubes.

Put the vegetables in a heavy cast iron pot, except the kale and white beans.

Saute all the vegetables in the olive oil until the vegetables are soft and the onion is translucent  (about 15 minutes). Then add the kale, beans and stock, and stir until blended.  Season mixture with salt and pepper.

Simmer on low heat for 1.5 hours.

To serve:

Serve this soup with crusty bread and a spinach, apple, walnut salad with blue cheese crumbles and balsamic vinaigrette.  This perfect for a tummy-warming fall supper with family and friends!

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Roberto’s Fresh Artichoke Salad from Cocktail Italiano

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It’s the last week of Juice January, so I’m giving it an incredible, celebratory send-off with this recipe from Cocktail Italiano.

When I found baby artichokes at Fresh Market in my neighborhood, I thought it was a fluke. Maybe a food stylist had special ordered them? But much to surprise they have appeared more regularly over the past few weeks this winter.

I had taken a photo and posted them on an Instagram story, and Nicole, my web manager, messaged me asking what they were. I told her they were baby artichokes. She asked what I was going to do with them, and I told her that I was going to make Roberto’s fresh artichoke salad, using the baby artichokes fresh. I explained that the recipe was in Cocktail Italiano and that she should try it. She suggested I put it here on the blog, so I listened to her, and here it is!

I had never eaten a raw artichoke until about twelve years ago—and, of course, it was in Italy.

We were visiting our best friends in Genova, Forrest and Roberto, chatting away in the kitchen, when Roberto (who’s actually an Italian Prince from the region of Savona on the Riviera) grabbed a few baby artichokes, and began running them under cold water. He patted them dry and quickly ran them through a mandolin, slicing them paper-thin. He put them in a bowl, and proceeded to douse them in Ligurian olive oil, added salt and a flourish of lemon juice, and finished it all off with shaved Parmesan. While Forrest poured a lovely chilled Verimentivo, we snacked on raw artichokes and sipped vino. For me, this was for me a whole new way of enjoying artichokes.

Let me know if you give this recipe a try. I’m sure you’ll enjoy it as much as I do.

Here’s Roberto’s recipe for fresh artichoke salad. Tip: make sure that the artichokes are very fresh and tender.

Roberto’s Fresh Artichoke Salad
Serves 8

You will need:
– 2 pounds (about 20) tender baby artichokes Note: you may substitute the interior soft leaves and heart of larger artichokes, but do not use the tough outer leaves
– 2 lemons, halved
– 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
– 1 to 1 ½ teaspoons salt
– 2 ounces Parmesan

To prepare:

Trim away any tough outer leaves of the artichokes to expose their tender pale green interior. Using a knife with a serrated-blade, cut off the spiky top 1/3 of the artichokes. (Note: baby artichokes will not have the spikes.) Use a vegetable peeler to remove the tough outer layers around the base and stem.

Using a mandolin, slice the artichokes paper-thin and transfer to medium bowl.

Squeeze the lemon halves over the artichokes, and toss with the oil. Sprinkle with salt, and use a potato peeler to shave the Parmesan over the salad. Serve in small bowls.

 

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Savory Mushroom Soup

Can you believe this week wraps-up Juice January? Congratulations for cleaning-up your routine and getting a great start on 2019! You did it!

Over the years, I’ve gone from a strict juice regime to incorporating healthier meals. I hope you’ve enjoyed all of the recipes this month and that you’ve found a few favorites to add to your repertoire. This savory mushroom soup might be another great recipe to add!

It’s a fantastic recipe for chilly winter nights. You will love it. It’s hearty and homey. I like to add a dollop of plain yogurt and chopped chives to top off this rich luscious soup.

Savory Mushroom Soup
serves 4-6

You will need:
– 3 tablespoons olive oil
– 1 teaspoon of sea salt
– 1 shallot chopped fine
– 3 stalks of celery chopped
– 2 large carrots cut into coins
– 3 small zucchinis cut into bite sized pieces
– 2 pints mixed mushrooms, like shitake, and portabellas, enoki
– 2 bulbs of garlic roasted whole
– 1 1/2 cups brown lentils
– 1 quart chicken broth or vegetable broth
– 1/3 cup chopped parsley
– 1/4 cup of plain yogurt
– chopped chives
– roasted garlic*

To prepare:
Chop vegetables, shallot, celery, carrots, zucchini, and mushrooms. Place in a large cast iron stock pot. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and saute over medium heat until transparent and wilted. Add the roasted garlic by squeezing the roasted garlic cloves into the pot and stir to combine all the ingredients. Add parsley, lentils and broth. Simmer over low heat for 2-3 hours. Serve.

I like to add a dollop of plain yogurt and chopped chives to top off this rich luscious soup.

*To prepare roasted garlic: place whole bulbs of garlic wrapped in aluminum foil in the oven on 325 for 1 hour until garlic is soft and fragrant.

Photo by me

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Virgin Cocktail Week:: Moscow Mule Mocktail

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I’m back today with another delicious virgin cocktail for you: a Moscow Mule. Obviously Juice January, calls for little (or much less) alcohol. However, sometimes I crave a little cocktail. What can I say? I am a girl that loves a cocktail! This Moscow Mule Mocktail does the trick.

It’s all about the ginger beer, lime and crushed ice – perfect for a winter weekend.

xx Annette

Moscow Mule Mocktail
serves 1

You will need:
– 1/2 cup Ginger Beer
– 3 tbsp Fresh Lime Juice
– 3 tbsp Club Soda
– 1/2 cup Crushed ice

To prepare:

Mix ingredients in a copper mug 3/4 full of crushed ice. Stir together. Garnish with lime wedge.

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Virgin Cocktail Week:: Homemade Virgin Bloody Mary (aka V8!)

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By now you should be adapting to your clean eating regime. I hope you’re working out, too. Even a brisk walk for 20 minutes 3 times a week should be fine. Just get up and MOVE!

One of the hardest parts of clean eating is avoiding alcohol. As you all know, I love cocktails – so much so that I wrote an entire book about them! But I try to make an effort each January to clean up my entire routine and that includes cocktails!

A go-to cocktail that I love is a Bloody Mary. Instead of indulging in a traditional cocktail, I like to mix-up homemade V8 juice. I even place a celery stick into the glass, too. It makes it feel that much more authentic. Sometimes making your juice more festive makes juicing more fun!

xx Annette

Homemade Virgin Bloody Mary
Serves 1

You will need:

– 1 cup tomato
– 1 carrot
– small sliver of beet (mostly for color)
– 1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
– 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
– 1/4 teaspoon cracked pepper
– 1/4 cup water + 1/4 cup ice
– 1/4 cup spinach
– 1 tablespoon parsley

Place all ingredients into your Nutribullet, process for 30 seconds, and enjoy.

Photo and recipe adapter from here.

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