Paleo Kabocha Pie: How to Make a Healthier PieBy foodjoyaMy favorite part of a holiday dinner is dessert. Sweet aroma of spices and pumpkin are, of course, synonymous with Thanksgiving. But for our holiday dessert, in place of pumpkin, I chose flavorful (and very nutritious) kabocha squash. The result - honey-sweetened, flourless Paleo Kabocha Pie - is indulgent. Because kabocha squash is sweeter and fluffier than pumpkin, the pie has an unbeatable chestnut-like texture and a complex sweetness. (To assure you, according to Wikipedia, Kabocha has an exceptional sweet flavor, even sweeter than butternut squash.) And unlike more common versions of the dessert, Paleo Kabocha Pie is overloaded with luscious custard. But these are not the only reasons to love this heavenly dessert. Bite after bite into the pie, you will savor the remarkable flavors of the fall: pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves. Now let me give you a few serving tips. I would recommend decorating the Paleo Kabocha Pie with walnuts or pecans. And if you wish to go over the top (and end in heaven!), drop a dollop of fresh, lightly sweetened whipped cream. But if you are still skeptical that kabocha squash is the perfect "pumpkin" for your festive dessert, just give it a try. I surmise you will forever replace your holiday pumpkins with this scrumptious squash. toddler chicken vegetable soup: nourish your little oneBy foodjoyaChicken soup is a traditional cold remedy for little children (and even adults). But did you know that chicken vegetable soup is a staple young children's meal in Eastern Europe? The reason for its popularity among parents is simple: It contains most of the nutrients a growing child needs. (Add a glass of calcium-rich beverage and a fresh fruit for dessert, and you've fully nourished your precious one.) As you read our recipe, you will see that we have upgraded the wise tradition. To start with, we've increased the variety and amount of vegetables and bade farewell to noodles. To cultivate in children a healthy palate and preference for real food, we've added plenty of herbs. The result is just that: a recipe for a perfect toddler chicken vegetable soup. How do we know that our toddler chicken vegetable soup is just sooo good? For the past three years, my 4.5 year old has been gobbling up bowls of this soup nearly every day. And, with the exception of our red beet soup (borscht), he will not eat any other soup - even if it comes from fancy stores and restaurants. Lastly, note that you can easily modify the toddler chicken vegetable soup to your liking. Feel free to use only chicken breasts, substitute one vegetable for another, or even use quinoa instead of sweet potato. Kale White Bean Stew: Infused with Herbs, ParmesanBy foodjoyaEver since we tried a kale white bean stew, we'd wanted to recreate one at home. Unlike the common versions, ours had to be tomato-free but still flavorful. In our initial attempts, we used leeks instead of onions, but the soup turned out unremarkable. We then turned to our favorite cookbooks for inspiration and found a perfect fix of parmesan rind and rosemary. For sure, a generous amount of parmesan rind, rosemary and thyme infused the stew with a rich creamy flavor. Try this hearty Kale White Bean Stew! It's easy, budget-friendly and nutritious and may become your cold weather staple! (Our favorite inspiration sources were The New York Times and Eating From the Ground Up.) Easy Ratatouille Recipe: Delightful Vegetable MedleyBy foodjoyaOur easy ratatouille recipe uses diced tomatoes and a delicious tomato sauce. This dish is perfect for the vegetables from your prolific summer garden. Do you know what "ratatouille" means? According to one source, this vegetable stew likely originates from Provence and has become most popular in Nice. Dating back to 18th century, it means "stir up." Ratatouille usually consists of various vegetables, such as eggplant, onion, zucchini, pepper, tomatoes and garlic, cut in bite sizes. Some chefs cook all ingredients together, while others separately sauté each vegetable. A similar dish exists in other countries in Southern Europe and Mediterranean. Thus, for example, a close relative of ratatouille in Moldova (where we were born) is a "ghiveci," often made with cauliflower. Our easy ratatouille recipe can be used for making a side dish or main dish with grains or, better yet, with grain-free, flourless Simple Mills crackers. Parmesan Roasted Zucchini: How to Make Them Juicier, SweeterBy foodjoyaVery often, cooked zucchini turn out soupy and bland. And that is no wonder, since this vegetable is about 96% water. The secret to a better tasting zucchini, then, is to eliminate excess water while concentrating the juices. And that's exactly what this recipe is about. By cooking the vegetable at a high temperature, our recipe for Parmesan Roasted Zucchini helps avoid this undesirable result. Much of the water evaporates at high temperature, and the remaining juices pleasantly caramelize and release the signature floral flavor. In addition, browned savory Parmesan creates a beautiful contrast to naturally sweet zucchini. As always, we are roasting in a convection oven. If you are using a non-convection oven, be sure to increase the temperature by about 20 to 25F. Paleo Cherry Clafoutis: How to Perfect the Tender TextureBy foodjoyaWhen cherries are in season, a tender, fruit-studded custard, like our Paleo Cherry Clafoutis, is perfect. Sweetened only with honey and made with almond flour, this dessert is undeniably healthy and nourishing. It is also irresistibly delicious. Because our recipe incorporates techniques (like baking temperature and use of cast-iron) from America's Test Kitchen, it results in a perfectly rich and tender custard.