MEL × RIVERBEND: Rice & Lentil Stuffed Carnival Squash
MEL × RIVERBEND: Rice & Lentil Stuffed Carnival Squash - the nomadic wife

RECIPE SPONSORED BY RIVERBEND GARDENS


 

Carnival squash

If, like me, you’ve been living under a rock for some time and have yet to experience Carnival Squash let me introduce you to this beauty of a vegetable. You can recognize their quintessential look by their half way orange halfway green stripes on an off-white base (not sure what I mean, take a peek at this recipe for photos of this beauty). They’re an acorn squash cross and just like it’s forest green & yellow fleshed cousin, it’s a little sweet and makes a perfect bowl for stuffing.

I had never experienced carnival squash before starting my stint with Riverbend Gardens. So if you fall in love hard with carnival squash like I do, send them a love note!

 
 
MEL × RIVERBEND: Rice & Lentil Stuffed Carnival Squash
 
 

Time to celebrate fall flavors

This week’s recipe celebrates some of fall’s favorite flavors. Namely: squash, apple & cinnamon. In the mix, you’ll also find beautifully earthy lentil and the gorgeous chew of wild rice which balances out the sweet flavors perfectly.

It’s not a sweet dish, per se, it’s something I would definitely have for lunch or dinner alongside a beautifully spicy arugula salad.

Pro tip: using a Macintosh apple (if you can’t find them, ask your fruit farmer what the closest thing would be) really makes this recipe shine. The fruity acidity found in this apple really brightens the dish a ton.

If you can’t find some (or a similarly tart apple) add a bit more lime to balance out the sweetness!


 

THE RECIPE


* you can find wild rice in most grocery stores now a days, but you could also easily swap for a brown rice or a rice mix of your choice

MAKES 2 SERVINGS

1 carnival squash
1 C wild rice*
1/2 C french lentil
1 large Macintosh apple
1/2 C dried cranberries
1/2 C pumpkin seeds
1 small head of garlic
3 T olive oil
2 T lime juice (1 lime)
2 t ground cumin
2 t ground coriander
1 t ground cinnamon
Salt + Pepper

Arugula (optional) to be served as a side salad with a drizzle of balsamic & olive oil.

5 MINS PREP + 30 MINS COOK

  1. Heat the oven to 400.

  2. Cook lentil + wild rice according to package instructions (usually takes about 30 minutes) then set aside.

  3. While the legumes + grains cook, half the squash and remove the seeds with a spoon.

  4. Place the squash on a baking sheet, drizzle some olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

  5. Cut the bottom off the head of garlic and separate the cloves while keeping their skins on.

  6. Place half the cloves in each half of the squash and bake for 30 minutes or until squash is soft when poked with a fork or the tip of a knife.

  7. Dice the Macintosh apple into small cubes and place them in medium mixing bowl along with the lime juice, olive oil & spices.

  8. Remove the garlic from the squash, squeeze the cloves out of their skins and chop them before adding it to the bowl along with the rice and lentils.

  9. Mix well, add salt and pepper then ladle into the squash bowls and serve.

 

more Squash recipes

MEL × RIVERBEND: Warm Potato Bowl With Chili Lime Sauce
Warm Potato Bowl With Chili Lime Sauce - The nomadic wife

Photography by Sara Jewell

RECIPE SPONSORED BY RIVERBEND GARDENS


 

Sleepless nights call for easy nosh

Many of you have noticed the many photos of Little E on Instagram! But I guess I haven’t really talked about what cooking has been like since he was born. I just thought I would sort of carry on with life, with a little dude in tow and life would be grand.

While that is sometimes the truth, most days I get anywhere between two and four two hour naps during the night. Lack of sleep is taking a toll on me this week and cooking my own meals is basically gone out the window.. but let me tell you this.

When I eat takeout (no matter how easy it is to order and how satisfying it is in the moment) I wind up feeling more depleted than before I had the meal.

The excessive salt leaves me dehydrated (breastfeeding hydration is already tough enough to keep up with). Perhaps I don't make the most judicious choices when I order in, but by the time I do I'm usually in panic mode and starving.

 
Warm Potato Bowl With Chili Lime Sauce - The nomadic wife
Warm Potato Bowl With Chili Lime Sauce - The nomadic wife
 

The alternative to takeout

Bowls. Simple one worded answer but the truth none the less. I just can’t say it enough. They’re easy to prepare ahead of time. They keep me sane.

This variation has a warm element ( the baked potatoes but really, you could cook all the produce if you wanted a warm bowl instead of a salad-like feel ) and it makes this particular bowl perfect for this frigid September weather. You want warm the potatoes through in a skillet or eat them cold if you wish.

 
Warm Potato Bowl With Chili Lime Sauce - The nomadic wife

THE RECIPE


MAKES 4 SERVINGS

8 potatoes
1/2 head of cabbage
1 bunch beans, sliced
4 large carrots grated
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 T coconut oil
1 C pumpkin seeds, divided
Black & toasted sesame for serving

FOR SAUCE

1/2 C mayonnaise
2 T grainy mustard
1 t smoked paprika
1 t chili powder
1 t turmeric
2 T lime juice

5 MINS PREP + 30 MINS COOK

  1. Place potatoes in a pot, cover with water & set to boil until tender (15-20 mins)

  2. Once the potatoes are tender, grab a baking sheet and lightly “crush” them onto the sheet with a masher.
    The potatoes should flatten out somewhat but not completely fall apart.

  3. Add a little coconut oil on top of each one, then sprinkle a little salt

  4. Bake at 425 for about 10 minutes or until slightly golden

  5. Serve warm with other veggies & sauce

 

more potato recipes

MEL × RIVERBEND: Carrot + Stem Mixed Pickles
Carrot + Stem Mixed Pickles - The nomadic wife

Photography by Sara Jewell

RECIPE SPONSORED BY RIVERBEND GARDENS


 

Pickles from my mother's kitchen

Pickle making is something that I’ve borrowed from my mother’s kitchen. She used to make beet pickles mostly, and she liked them on the tangy side. There always seemed to be rows upon rows of quart sized jars in the basement, but then again, I was young and everything seemed to be so endlessly abundant then.

I would grab a jar, unscrew the metal ring top and pop the sealed lid with the help of a fork. From there, I would spike a fork into the ever so dark juices in hope to capture a jewel-toned piece of sweet and vinegary root. Once I had consumed about half the jar, I would pour out some of the pickling brine to ease my fork-fishing endeavors.

 
Carrot + Stem Mixed Pickles - The nomadic wife
Carrot + Stem Mixed Pickles - The nomadic wife
 

Pickles in my kitchen

Pickles, now, are something that I serve alongside almost everything. I enjoy having food boards when friends come over and pickles of every kind balance those out ever so well. They're also such a lovely palate cleansing food, which can be used between courses or as a starter to a meal.

If I'm being perfectly honest though, I make pickles for the very selfish reason of eating them by the jar-full. Simply with a fork, or alongside aged cheddar and crackers. On evenings when I can't be bothered to make a meal, and Tom isn't home to eat, pickles and cheese is my guilty pleasure. 

 
Food-70.jpg
 

This time of year, when carrots are getting sweeter and stems are getting more fibrous, all I want to do is make pickles. Sure, you can make pickles out of just about anything, kale stems, beets, carrots, beans, zucchini or cukes. However, there's something quite fantastic about doing a combination or mixed pickle. I love popping open a jar and savoring the different tastes and textures.

This one has three main ingredients: rainbow chard stems, carrots & garlic scapes and it truly is a delight.

 
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Carrot + Stem Mixed Pickles - The nomadic wife

THE RECIPE


Makes 2 quarts

2 C carrot sticks
2 C rainbow chard stems*
1 - 2 garlic scapes

2 C filtered water
1 C white vinegar
1 C white wine vinegar
1 T sugar
1 T salt

10 min PREP 

  1. Chop your vegetables into sticks of matching length no longer than the height of the jar (you need to be able to fully submerge them) and pack it into your mason jars.

  2. The tighter you pack it the better your pickles will be and the less likely they are to go bad.

  3. Mix together the water, vinegars, sugar & salt to make your pickling liquid.

  4. Once the salt & sugar have dissolved, pour the liquid over the veg to fill the jars.

  5. Use your finger to pack them in even more and release as much air as possible. Tapping gently on the counter after the lid is on also works well to release air bubbles.

  6. Leave the jars on the counter for at least an hour then store them in the fridge.

 

more carrot recipes