Monday, November 18, 2013

Butternut Squash Soup and thoughts of Christmas Eve

On Friday in all it's November beauty,
I made butternut squash soup for the second time.

I had 4 squash this time,
as we were making it for two dinners.

One of the dinners fell through at the last minute
but I was cheered by the fact that
it meant that I could freeze some.
I am already dreaming of Mr. Husband and I's
Christmas Dinner.
This soup is going to be the first course.
A chicken we already have frozen will be part of the main course.

The hardest part of making this soup for me
is cutting the squash in half!

I forgot that it was not just honey spread on the
quash before roasting them;
it was supposed to be a mixture
of a veg. oil and honey.

Last time part of my apple and onions were lost
as 1 hour of roasting makes them lumps of burnt nothingness.
So I was quick to save them this time.
I took them out every 17 or so minutes to turn
and remove things as they came done.
The apples and onions need less than 30 minutes or so.

This time I had chicken broth on hand.
I have not had time to try to make my own again,
though I have many good recipes and tips to try!

Smelled wonderful on the stove!

I pureed the soup and froze it with
saran warp on top as I read
it can stop freezer burn. 

I did not add the cream to the frozen soup
and marked it accordingly.
My google research on the topic
seemed to imply that cream may have to be
re-added after it taken out from the freezer
and so it seemed more economical to just wait with the cream.
Other than for the top little jar
which was enough for one big bowl of the soup
for my dinner on Saturday.
I added some cream.
I think the soup is a bit sweeter this time;
I am wondering about the oil I forgot and
the extra honey that I used because of this omission.
And that the squash did not get as burnt on the tips as last time,
or that I did not add the needed salt and pepper.
I am sure that I can season as I go, when reheating this soup.
I am beginning to dream about Christmas,
Mr. Husband and I's God-wiling
second Christmas as a newly married couple.
I have been squirreling away gifts for Mr. Husband,
ideas of Christmas Dinner,
gift ideas for various loved ones
and hope to make a really special meal at home for us.
I am also hoping to have a small holy supper this year
for Christmas Eve,
using the same table cloth that I used before and hope to find
vegan perogies with potato and onion.
Last Christmas we were not able to do the Holy Supper
which has become so much of my experience of Christmas and
the preparing for Christ's Birth.
I am so hoping it will be different this year ~
that we will not be sick, that we can have a simple
Holy Supper.
I am thinking of this as a menu:
~borsht (fasting)
~perogies (fasting)
~ bread
~dried fruit
~perhaps a lenten poppy seed dessert.
Here are some links about the Holy Supper
here, here, here (these first three being from the same place.
Also here, here, here and here.
I will never forget my years in Ottawa
and the various Holy Suppers I have been to there
and have hosted.
And how we would all after the meal go to church
for the Christmas Eve service.
My church started this service a little later than some churches
so everyone had time for their Holy Supper.
This meal adds so much to Christmas and
hushed glory and splendor that is there on Christmas Day.
Years ago the women who I have blogged about as the
Matriarch and Grandmother of my Ottawa Parish
lent me her cookbook with Christmas and Pascha recipes.
I found the PDF I made of these recipes today.
I also found a copy of this cookbook on Amazon
for a reasonable price and bought it,
thinking so much of this women.
So hopefully by December I will have a used copy
for God-willing future Christmas and Paschas...
Here's what it looks like,
just as I remember it:

I really miss them all,
those I knew and love in Ottawa;
as I blogged about before,
I hope that what I saw and was given in Ottawa
I hope to have always within me
and bring to everyone else that God
gives me on my life's path,
first of all being my beloved Mr. Husband and making
our own Orthodox Family Traditions as the years go by.
May God so grant this mercy!


Apseed said...

Here in Lithuania Holy Supper is a very special day. We celebrate it with our friends and it's a mix of traditions. They are catholic and we are orthodox, so it means we have fish (herring to be precise), 12 dishes, hay under the tablecloth (not always), kūčiukai and kutia (if I have all the necessary ingredients).

Elizabeth @ The Garden Window said...

It's exciting planning for Christmas :-)