Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash soup is a rich and creamy soup, perfect for a cool Fall day. I’ve never really had butternut squash soup before, but I love butternut squash. Butternut squash risotto is really good and so is this soup. Get squash when it goes on sale at the grocery store and serve it with a nice piece of chunky bread. It was 51 cents a pound or something like that, when I got this and only cost about $2.50 for the whole squash. Not bad.

My brother gave me a new knife set for our wedding present and it cut through the squash really well. The knife set even came with a knife sharpener, which is really cool. We also got the pasta maker attachment for our kitchen aid mixer, and I can not wait to try making my own pasta. Ravioli here I come! It even makes it’s own spaghetti. Wonder how many calories making your own pasta is compared to the number of calories are with the store bought pasta???

Serves: 8

Points plus: 6

Calories: 204 | Fat: 5.9g | Carbohydrate: 34.7g | Fiber: 5.3g

Ingredients from Cooking Light

8 cups (1-inch) cubed peeled butternut squash (about 2 1/4 pounds)
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
Cooking spray
4 cups warm 2% reduced-fat milk, divided
1 (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth, divided
1/4 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

Preparation

Preheat oven to 400°.
Combine squash, oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper on a foil-lined baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 45 minutes or until tender. Place half of squash, half of milk, and half of broth in a blender; process until smooth. Pour pureed mixture into a large saucepan. Repeat procedure with remaining squash, milk, and broth. Cook over medium heat 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated (do not bring to a boil). Stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Ladle 1 cup soup into each of 8 bowls; sprinkle each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons nuts.

Low Calorie Monkey Bread

Sometimes Cooking Light magazine makes me wonder. I thought it was weird they wanted me to add in warm orange juice to a dough mixture. I’ve never seen those directions  in a recipe before. The recipe also said to add in some melted butter to the dough. I  left out the butter and used that with the cinnamon sugar mixture. Sometimes, with their recipes you can make them even lighter if you wanted too. I’ve noticed that with some of their baking recipes anyways.

Most monkey bread recipes use canned biscuits but this recipe called for making your own dough. I don’t mind doing that actually. The only hard part was waiting for this recipe to get done. I’ve seen low fat versions of monkey bread that uses fake everything and in this one you get to use real butter and real sugar. SCORE! I’m not going to put some syrup that has chemicals in it, in my food at all. No thanks. If you don’t mind waiting for dough to rise then by all means go and make this recipe. It was pretty tasty, and maybe next time I’ll try adding in the orange to the dough mixture.

Servings: 16

Calories: 234 | Fat: 3.4g | Carbohydrate: 47.2g | Fiber: 1.9g | Protein: 4.5g

Points Plus: 6

Ingredients from Cooking Light

13 1/2 ounces all-purpose flour (about 3 cups)
4 3/4 ounces whole-wheat flour (about 1 cup)
1 teaspoon salt
1 package quick-rise yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 cup very warm fat-free milk (120° to 130°)
1/4 cup very warm orange juice (120° to 130°)
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons butter, melted
Cooking spray
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
4 1/2 tablespoons fat-free milk, divided
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preparation

1. Weigh or lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, salt, and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer with dough hook attached; mix until combined. With mixer on, slowly add 1 cup milk, juice, honey, and 2 tablespoons butter; mix dough at medium speed 7 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, the dough has risen enough.)

2. Combine granulated sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a shallow dish. Combine 3 tablespoons milk and 2 tablespoons butter in a shallow dish, stirring with a whisk.

3. Punch dough down; divide into 8 equal portions. Working with one portion at a time (cover remaining dough to prevent drying), roll into an 8-inch rope. Cut each dough rope into 8 equal pieces, shaping each piece into a 1-inch ball. Dip each ball in milk mixture, turning to coat, and roll in sugar mixture. Layer balls in a 12-cup Bundt pan coated with cooking spray. Repeat procedure with remaining 7 dough ropes. Sprinkle any remaining sugar mixture over dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until almost doubled in size.

4. Preheat oven to 350°.

5. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until golden. Cool 5 minutes on a wire rack. Place a plate upside down on top of bread; invert onto plate. Combine powdered sugar, remaining milk, and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Microwave at HIGH 20 seconds or until warm. Drizzle over bread.