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Cooking during the holidays can be as bright and cheerful as a house full of people. Ali Casparian of Bounty & Soul, which brings fresh, free fruit and vegetables to the Valley’s underserved residents, recently created a heavenly host of holiday recipes at Bounty & Soul’s Tuesday market at St. James Episcopal Church in Black Mountain.

Casparian will share recipes with Black Mountain News readers each week through Christmas Eve. Each recipe is easy as it is delicious and nutritious. And because they’re made with fresh fruit and vegetables, the colors of each side dish are as bright as the coming conversation around your holiday table.

Today, we start with a blender-smooth Butternut & Apple Bisque (as pictured on Page 1A). Following each week will be recipes for Sweet Potato Guacamole (Dec. 3), Kale and Butternut Squash Stuffing (Dec. 10), Brown Rice or Quinoa Apple Stuffing (Dec. 17) and Warm Kale and Sweet Potato Salad (Dec. 24).

To learn more about Bounty & Soul and how you can help, visit bountyandsoul.org.

Butternut Squash & Apple Bisque

1 medium butternut squash, baked, roasted or steamed

1 medium onion or leek, chopped

1/2 clove garlic, minced

1 inch fresh ginger, grated

1 small apple, chopped

2 tablespoon coconut oil or grass-fed butter

1 cup coconut milk (light)

1 cup vegetable or chicken brother (organic) plus more to thin

Sea salt and pepper to taste

Saute onion, garlic, apple and ginger in oil. Add broth and simmer for 3-5 minutes. Put cooked mixture in blender and blend until smooth. slowly add coconut mil and more broth and continue blending until smooth. Serve warm and top with pumpkin seeds.

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