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Me, Myself, and Cuisine

When I'm not making plans and working towards someday opening a restaurant or catering business, my life stays pretty busy, but I always find time for food. If I'm not watching cooking shows or reading cook books or cooking, chances are I'm thinking about food or headed over to the local farmer's market.

Yesterday, my wife, better known as Jessica at Avant-Garde Living, and I started a new diet. Actually, more of a challenge. We are calling it the "30 Day, Go Fresh Challenge." We are taking the idea that food loses its nutritional value the longer it sits on the shelf at the supermarket and doing something about it. We are only buying produce at the farmer's market, buying our meats at the butcher, and only buying dairy products and dry goods at the grocery store. We are eliminating all canned goods and anything else with preservatives listed in the ingredients.

It is actually pretty exciting. I started the challenge by making my own bread. I am also making my own stocks and hope to eventually make my own jams and jellies.

Tonight's dinner was Roasted Butternut Squash, with prosciutto and broccoli, served over pasta. I began by peeling and seeding the butternut squash, then tossing it in olive oil with some salt. I baked it at 375 degrees for 20 minutes. The prosciutto was chopped and tossed in a pan with olive oil and crushed red pepper until crispy. I cut the stem from the broccoli and chopped up the remainder, adding that to the crispy prosciutto. When the squash came out of the oven I added that to the pan and tossed to mix. This was all mixed together with al dente shells and served with fresh grated Parmesan cheese.

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