delicata squash

warm squash, parsnip, + kale salad w/ pomegranate dressing by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


not that long ago i was in the kitchen of a lifelong friend of mine, and since a large portion of my life is all about food these days, it was super interesting to see how she was generating dinner that night, along with how she organized her kitchen, and i even found myself curiously peeking at the condiments in her fridge.  she totally confessed to me that she can feel anxious at the thought of what to cook for her and her husband, how to prepare and cook various kinds of ingredients, how to store fresh produce, and how to eat less take-out, and more healthfully.   i could completely relate to the part about planning a meal, because while i may work with food all the time, some days it's nice to not have to think about what to make for dinner.



recently we met for brunch and inevitably the topic of food came up again.  i asked how her cooking quest was coming along and she began telling me about a food delivery service she started using called Blue Apron.  she told me how they offer chef-designed meals with step-by-step instructional recipe cards that are all delivered to your door already proportioned so you don't have to deal with a trip to the store, or have any unused product afterwards.  she said her and her husband use the 2-person plan they offer at $9.99 per person per meal, always with free delivery, once a week of 3 meals for them.  she was really impressed that they have fresh produce from local farms and utilize whole grains, seasonal veg, and healthy fats.  she mentioned they even offer a family plan, which i later looked up is only $8.74 per person per meal and adds some options on delivery and has family style meals as well.



i was super intrigued by all the things i heard my friend tell me over brunch, so a few days later when Blue Apron happened to contact me about trying their service,  i was certainly excited to see what it was all about.  i learned they add 6 recipes every week and cover 80% of the country, so I know i'll have to let my family who lives in LA + north carolina know about them too.  i was impressed when i got my package with so many fresh ingredients in a refrigerated box so nothing was even close to wilted.  there was fresh, local product from farms in upstate new york, as well as from one of my favorite nyc bakeries, hot bread kitchen.  i'm also looking forward to gaining inspiration from Blue Apron's cache of recipes, including this quinoa and tofu "fried rice", and this cozy tuscan ribollita soup with farm eggs!  

you can find the recipe for this lovely squash salad here, where i substituted the farro for sprouted quinoa :)  by the way, the pomegranate molasses dressing in the recipe was a complete revelation, and it's totally making a comeback in my kitchen asap!



this kind of service certainly strikes a chord with me as i know a lot of people don't cook because they can feel intimidated or apprehensive about where to start, just like my friend did, and how so many people fall back on take out and fast food, even though they really want to be eating more healthfully.  so, in the spirit of getting people back in the kitchen, Blue Apron was kind enough to give the first 25 readers 2 free meals on their first order, just click here.  happy healthy! xo

*this post is in partnership with Blue Apron, all opinions are my own.


spicy chickpea stew w/ quinoa pilaf + a giveaway! by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal


back a few years ago, when my gluten and dairy intolerances came to a head, i remember feeling that there was such a lack of information about food, its importance, how big of a role it plays in just about everything imaginable, and what a person with gluten and dairy intolerance eat?!  like any student who was working a full-time job as well, i turned to the internet, because even though i was on a campus with a library, i had zero time to be in it.  i began following heidi's blog, and then sara's blogs for cooking inspiration, and from there i found laura's gorgeous space and was immediately aware that there was a whole world of amazing people sharing their food journeys through writing and photos.  i then stumbled onto amy's blog, coconut & quinoa (which is now titled amy chaplin), furthering my appreciation for wholesome food, and educating me on what nourishment, in its basic form, is.  

back in my school days, i would make a big old pot of veggie chili on sunday nights, so that way i could have leftovers for lunch or dinner for the week.  it was a big pot of any kind of squash, onions, garlic, herbs + spices, carrots - whatever the season was offering at the time.  in it went into a large soup pot, mixed with crushed san marzano tomatoes, and usually topped off with some variety of rice.  so when i opened amy's stunningly gorgeous book, i knew i wanted to make her variation of a personal fave.  she, not surprisingly, introduced me to a few knew top-notch ideas (chopping up and using parsley stems! nothing goes to waste!), and new-to-me techniques (roll cutting the carrots to make beautiful shapes instead of my usual slice).  there were also so many lovely items to compliment the dish, including the addition of harrisa paste, a qunioa pilaf, and labneh (for all you dairy eaters out there!); making it a super stand-up meal.  each and every one of amy's recipes is beautifully amplified by a large array of seasonal produce, taking you from one season to the next, all with such ease.  

and this post wouldn't be complete without a bit of a shoutout to halloween!  

  • what i'd love to dress our dog as this year!
  • this extremely rad nod to halloween.  all i have to say is: batman pumpkin!
  • the past 3 years halloween has either been a crazy snow/ice storm, a superstorm sandy evacuation, and then last year we were in europe. so this year, we plan on sitting back watching one of our favorites to celebrate 
  • and perhaps to go along with said favorite movie, i'll make a variation of these homemade peanut butter cups!
  • and, my brother is a super talented illustrator, each october he participates in something called Inktober, where he (and other artists) ink an illustration a day, for the entire month.  just thought i would share, since i think they're pretty super!

*TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY* of Amy Chaplin's At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen: please leave a comment (with your name and email) about your favorite go-to meal that lasts for the week!  contest ends at 6pm on tuesday, november 4th.  (sorry, open to US residents only.)  have a great halloween!  :) xo



spicy chickpea stew and quinoa pilaf w/ golden raisins + almonds 

from At Home In The Whole Food Kitchen by Amy Chaplin

here, amy uses butternut squash and i indicate that below in the ingredient list, however, i chose to use delicata squash (just a personal preference),  if using delicata, proceed with the same preparation as the butternut squash, except for peeling the skin.  

| serves 6 |

ingredients

  • 1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut in 3/4-inch pieces (about 6 cups)
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 2 medium onions
  • 8 large garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley stems
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons toasted ground cumin (ground cumin if you don't have cumin seeds)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 3 medium carrots, cut in 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup chickpea cooking liquid, or filtered water
  • 1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 3-4 teaspoons harissa, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley, plus more to garnish

quinoa pilaf

  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa, washed and soaked 12-24 hours in 4 cups filtered water (optional)
  • 1 3/4 cups filtered water
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/3 cup unsulfered golden raisins ( i used dried currants because it's what i had on hand)
  • 1/3 cup toasted almonds, chopped

spicy chickpea stew w/ quinoa pilaf | dolly and oatmeal

instructions

  • preheat oven to 400°.  line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and add squash.  add 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and a pink of pepper, and toss well.  spread out over single layer and roast for 30 minutes.  stir, and continue roasting for another 10-15 minutes or until browning and cooked through.  remove from oven and set aside
  • warm remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.  add onions, saute for 5 minutes or until golden. stir in garlic and cook for 3 minutes more.  add parsley stems, cumin, paprika, and 1/2 teaspoon salt; cook for 1 to 2 minutes.  stir in carrots and 1 cup chickpea cooking water (or water), and bring to a boil over high heat.  cover pot, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 10-12 minutes.  add chickpeas and crushed tomatoes, then stir in harissa paste, chopped parsley leaves, and roasted squash; simmer uncovered for another few minutes to allow flavors to meld
  • season to taste and serve warm

quinoa pilaf

  • rinse and drain quinoa.  Place in a 2-quart pot and add filtered water, salt, and raisins.  bring to a boil over high heat.  cover pot, reduce heat to low, and cook for 15 minutes or until all water is absorbed.  remove from heat, and let sit for 5 to10 minutes before fluffing with a fork.  add almonds and mix gently to combine.  serve warm