Love Local - RECIPES

September 28, 2018
Love Local - RECIPES

We spent some time at Valleyfield Acres learning about their squash and pumpkins this week. We sell their products in our Winkler and Morden Co-op Food Stores and would love for you to try the following recipe using their produce, created by Registered Nutritional Therapist Sonia Funk from The Whole Avocado.  




1 medium yellow onion

1 clove garlic

2-3 bell peppers

1 small zucchini

Small bunch of fresh thyme, oregano, basil, parsley and rosemary 

(you can use dried herbs if fresh are not available, use smaller amounts.)

1 large can of diced tomatoes

1 kar of Co-op PURE or Gold Tomato and Basil Pasta Sauce

Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Sautee onion and garlic on medium heat for about 10 minutes.
  2. Add chopped Peppers and Zucchini and sautee until soft.
  3. ¼ cup each of thyme, oregano and rosemary leaves torn off the stem. (helpful hint: grasp the top of the herb twigs with one hand and gently pull run pinched fingers down the stem against their growth pattern of the leaves to get them off – this is the fastest way. Or you can put the whole sprigs in and pull them out later once the leaves have fallen off) Mix them in, turn down to minimum and cover pot for 10 min.
  4. Add in one can of tomatoes (or 5 large fresh tomatoes peeled and chopped) and one jar of pasta sauce
  5. Let it all simmer on low with lid on, stirring occasionally, for an hour.
  6. At the very end turn heat off and add in half a cup of finely chopped basil and ¼ cup parsley, stir and let sit covered for 20 minutes before serving.


Spaghetti Squash

  1. Cut in half, scoop out seeds.
  2. Rub olive oil all over the inside and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  3. Put face open side down on a baking pan and bake for 40-60 minutes at 350, poke with a fork to check for doneness, should be very soft.
  4. Scoop squash out.

Picky eaters? Here’s a kid hack for you.


Kids tend to like things sweet – grate one or two medium carrots into this sauce to sweeten it up naturally (avoiding the refined sugar that a marinara sauce is typically loaded with.) Once the sauce is done and cooled down a bit, put it through a blender – your kids will never know how many nourishing vegetables and fresh herbs are in it – but you will! I often throw some TexMex Seasoning in as well, for that extra flavor kids like. If the spaghetti squash isn’t working for them, grab some brown rice pasta, they won’t know the difference …if you don’t tell the.


The Whole Avocado Gourmet Twist:

Add 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 3/4 cup red wine in with the tomato sauce, simmer uncovered for 15 min then lid on for rest of simmer time.


Learn more about The Whole Avocado at




Recipe by Kevin Funk, The Olive Tree
Fresh ingredients grown locally at Valleyfield Acres
In partnership with Winkler-Morden Co-op


1 sugar pumpkin [halved]

1 yellow onion [roughly chopped]

4 stalks celery [roughly chopped]

2 sweet potatoes [cubed]

1 head of garlic

2 cups chicken broth [homemade if possible]

1 cup water

1 [398 ml] can coconut milk

1 cup Blumenfeld Creamery whole milk 

2 tbsp butter

1 tbsp lemon juice 

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp ginger

 Pre-heat oven to 350

    1.    Cover inside of pumpkin with olive oil & lay face down on a baking sheet. Place pumpkin & head of garlic in oven
and bake 35-50 minutes [done once a fork punctures easily through skin].  *garlic may need removal at roughly 20 
    2.    In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium high heat.
    3.    Add onion, celery to pot. Then add sweet potato, salt, pepper & remaining spices.
    4.    Add water & broth. Bring to boil.
    5.    Reduce heat to simmer and then add milk and coconut milk.
    6.    Remove pumpkin from oven once its done.
    7.    Scoop out seeds and strings and discard or separate seeds and use as garnish.
    8.    Scoop out pumpkin and add to pot along with the garlic. 
    9.    Blend using immersion blender,  or blender.
    10.  Serve. 
*drizzle black truffle oil over top of individual servings, sprinkle soup with toasted sesame seeds and pumpkin seeds