Friday, October 7, 2011

The Perfect Autumn Side Dish & "Ask Amy"

Cider-Glazed Squash
This recipe is simply delicious. I used sliced butternut squash recently and less butter for the sauce. Yum!
Cooking Time: 60 minutes
2 acorn squash
salt and pepper, to taste
1 tbsp olive oil (optional)
2 cups cider or unfiltered apple juice
2 tbsp sugar
4 tbsp butter (or less)
freshly ground pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly grease an 8 x 8-inch baking dish.
Halve squash and remove pith and seeds.
Brush with olive oil if you choose.
Season squash with salt and pepper, and place cut side down in baking dish.
Bake for 40 minutes.
While squash cooks, reduce cider in a saucepan over medium heat. When cider has reduced to nearly 1/2 cup, taste and add sugar if needed. Stir in butter.
Remove squash after 40 minutes and flip halves so cut side is up.
Brush cut areas with cider mixture and pour the rest evenly over the squash.
Bake an additional 20 minutes or until fork tender.
Makes 4 servings
"Ask Amy"
Q: When people ask me why I don't eat animal products anymore, I'm not always sure what to say. I was thinking of telling them I'm allergic or doing it just for health reasons, but that's not really true. How do you answer that question?
A: It takes courage to speak your truth. When I first became vegan, I sometimes responded to that kind of question in a timid way. I was more concerned with what others would think than of my desire to be a voice for the voiceless. Personally, when people ask me why I don't consume animal products, my answer is short: "I don't want to contribute to the suffering and killing of animals." Can't argue with that!
I also have appreciation for what it's like to be on the other side of this issue. Afterall, I spent 34 years eating animals and rationalizing it almost daily so I could consume them guilt-free. I understand that not everyone is ready or willing to see what's really happening to farm animals. I was a big dog-lover (still am) but didn't make the connection that if I loved some animals, why was I eating others? When I tell people why I don't consume animals anymore, they may or may not like my answer. But it doesn't matter to me. It is my truth now, and perhaps by being honest, I'm helping to plant a seed for someone else's future transition to a cruelty-free diet.

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