Posted on | November 13, 2008 | 38 Comments |
I know itâ€™s been a while since I posted anything. Iâ€™ve been so lazy lately to sit down and type a post. But today I really needed a distraction. A box of candy is putting my morals and willpower to test. It is not a long story, but I do tend to ramble when I am in such predicaments, so bear with me here!
It all started this Halloween, when a real estate agent living in our building distributed candies to everyone. He left a small box of candies along with his business card and some flyers at everyone’s front door- a nice neighborly gesture while spreading the word about his business, win-win for everyone.Â I normally just take such stuff to work and place them in the common room for others, after scouting for the good stuff of course. I am not a huge chocolate/candy person. I love some bites of good chocolates occasionally, but I can easily pass on the regular Costco variety, except for my one and only weakness -Kit Kats! Needless to say, there were two mini Kit Kat bars among all the other unremarkable candies in the box. I was having Kit Kat after years, and I was hooked!
I don’t know why Kit Kat has that kind of power on me; I think it has more to do with nostalgia than the taste. I used to live on these Kit Kat bars in India – at least a bar a day. This was just one of the many things I could finally afford to splurge on once I started working. Well, what do you expect when a girl suddenly goes from a fixed measly college allowance to a generous Software industry paycheck over the weekend? Yeah, it was literally over the weekend, I wrote my last semester exam on Friday, took the train to Bangalore on Saturday and started my job on Monday. Never took a break since then. That reminds me, I so need a vacation! Okay, I seriously digress!
Coming back to the story of morality, our next door neighbors are out of town, so their candy box is still sitting outside their door, which is dangerously close to our door. Every night I come home tired and hungry, I see this box in front of their door, and I KNOW there are those mini Kit Kat bars in it. It’s been two weeks since Halloween, and the box is still there! If I took that box, they wouldnâ€™t even know. There are no kids in that house, heck there are no kids in our whole building. Nobody will know, Nobody will care if that box of chocolates goes missing. But I just can’t get myself to take that. I could just go to the store and get a big box of Kit Kats, but I only remember this when I come home and see that box. Today is especially bad, I am working from home and there are no snacks in this house! Those Kit Kats would be heaven now. I am seriously hungry and seriously tempted, but the Thou shall not Steal line from the high school Moral Science class is still ringing in my ears.
Now you see why I need to distract myself from committing this act of crime that Iâ€™d regret a second after the loot is devoured. What would you do in such situations? Would you commit a crime if you knew you wonâ€™t get caught and it wouldnâ€™t really hurt anyone else?
I warned you I was going to ramble. But anyway, here is a bowl of warm and comforting soup to make up for all that rambling. This makes a hearty, filling dinner on its own and it is a perfect fall recipe. All credit goes to Emeril Lagasse and Food Network.
Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Red Rice, Sweet Corn and Sausages
I followed Emeril’s Smoked Sausage, Butternut Squash and Wild Rice Soup recipe with a few changes like substituting wild rice with Himalayan Red Rice and using Chorizo instead of kielbasa, and of course I spiced it up quite a bit. I also omitted half and half completely, since the soup tasted pretty good without it. Please refer to the original recipe for Emeril’s version, here is mine.
- 1lb butternut squash peeled, seeded and cubed (I bought the pre-cubed once, it saves time)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- SaltÂ to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1/3 cup red rice (I used Himalayan red rice, you can use wild rice or any other nutty variety of rice)
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 2 Spanish chorizo sausages, casings removed and sliced into thick rounds.
- 1/4 cup fresh sweet corn kennels
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish
Preheat the oven to 400F. Season the butternut squash with 1/2tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool. In a blender or food processor, puree the squash with 1/2 cup of the chicken stock till smooth. Keep aside.
Rinse the rice and place the rice along with 1 cup of the chicken stock in a pot. Bring this to a boil, cover and simmer over low heat for about 20-15 minutes or till the rice is tender. Follow the package instructions to cook the rice, since the different types of rice require different cooking time and rice-to-liquid ratio.
Heat the rest of the olive oil in a large saucepan. When the oil is hot, add the sausages and cook till well browned. Add the chopped onions, corn and bay leaves and saute till onions are soft. Add the paprika and mix well to combine, cook stirring frequently for 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the remaining chicken stock and squash puree and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Stir in the cooked rice and cook for another 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the chopped parsley if using and serve warm.
I am sending this off to Srivalli’s Rice Mela, an event celebrating rice in different forms.
More like this
I can't believe it is only the 10th of January, it feels like the Christmas holidays were ages a[...]
Zucchini is a vegetable that I donâ€™t have strong feelings about, neither a fan, nor a hater. Bu[...]