Sunday, October 26, 2008

Autumn Vegetable Wild Rice

  • 1 bacon slice
  • 1 cup finely chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup diced carrots
  • 2 teaspoons diced seeded jalapeo pepper (optional)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • sea salt and sage
  • 1 1/2 cups finely trimmed chopped Swiss chard
  • 1 cup sliced cremini mushrooms
  • 1 chopped peeled Granny Smith or Macintosh apple
  • 2 cups cooked wild rice
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp.Remove bacon from pan; crumble. Add onion and next 3 ingredients (through garlic) to pan; cover and cook 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Stir in reserved 3/4 teaspoon salt mixture, chard, mushrooms, and apple. Cover and cook 5 minutes or until carrot is tender. Stir in rice and 1/2 cup broth.Bring to a simmer; cook, uncover, 5 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Stir in bacon.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Butternut Squash Apple Soup

butter or olive oil or coconut oil
1 onion
1 butternut squash: peeled, seeds removed, cut into cubes
water to cover the squash as it cooks
4 apples, chopped
ume plum vinegar
spices to taste: nutmeg, ginger, red pepper, salt pepper

Place enough oil or butter in a stockpot to cover the bottom of the pot. Saute onion in oil until clear. Add chopped squash. Fill pot up with water until water mostly covers the squash. Let it simmer for an hour, or until squash is soft. When squash is soft and water has simmered off, add chopped apples. Cook for a few minutes- apples soften quickly. Add a few splashes of ume plum vinegar (this is a tangy vinegar- if without it, substitute apple cider vinegar) and spices. Serve. If you have an immersion blender, blending this will make it creamy and thick. I like to garnish with roasted pumpkin seeds and chopped parsley.

Fried Green Tomatoes

1 cup fine cornmeal
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt

Combine above on a plate.

4 green tomatoes (very firm unripe ones)

Slice tomatoes 3/4 inch thick. Dust tomatoes on both sides in cornmeal plate. Let moistness of the tomato slice absorb the cornmeal onto itself.
Fry tomato slices in very hot olive oil or bacon fat. They're done when they are a golden brown color on both sides.

All the Fields Pasta Sauce

Olive Oil
Onions, sliced thin
Garlic, chopped
Eggplant, sliced thin
Tomatoes: Yellow/ Green/ Red/ Orange Ones
Yellow Squash and Zucchini
Swiss Chard, Beet Greens, and/or Kale, chopped into strips
Parsley, snipped into pieces with scissors
Basil, sliced thin
Tarragon (just a little bit)
Oregano stripped from its stem
Honey, a few teaspoons
Red Wine or Red Wine Vinegar
Pepper, fresh cracked
Sea Salt

Heat up olive oil in a skillet, saute onions until soft, or for a sweeter flavor, saute them until they're brown. Gradually add the rest of the ingredients taking time for each to cook in the pan on its own. Saute until the flavors combine or you get really hungry. Tasty served over pasta, baguette, or brown rice.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Simple Basil Syrup

From Janet Schlafstein:
I picked some of the fabulous purple basil yesterday and decided to make a simple basil syrup with it, got the idea from the Courant, it turned out a beautiful purple color and tastes delicious. The paper recommends pouring over pound cake, I am thinking vanilla ice cream or greek yoghurt. It would also be wonderful in mixed drinks.

About a cup of Basil Leaves, purple or otherwise!
1 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of water

Put all the ingredients in a small pan, let them simmer until sugar is
dissolved and the mixture is syrupy, about 8 to 10 minutes. Strain and serve immediately or store in a jar in the refrigerator.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Quick Homemade Pickles

From Michael Shlafstein...

4 Kirby cucumbers
2 to 3 sprigs of tarragon
1 3/4 cups distilled white vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 tspn red pepper flakes
1 1/2 tspn coarse salt
1 quart Jar

Wash and dry cucumbers. Cut into spears. Place spears and tarragon
into Jar. Combine: vinegar, sugar, pepper, and salt in a pan over a
medium heat until sugar and salt have dissolved. Pour hot liquid into
jar. Let cool completely, uncovered. Cover and refrigerate overnight,
they will last for up to six weeks.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Zucchini Salsa Recipe

I've been freezing zucchini fries and enjoying lots of fresh zucchini dishes, too, but if you're looking to enjoy that zucchini goodness all winter long, the following recipe from Recipezaar has served me well in the past. The salsa is particularly good over rice or, if you're carnivorous, baked in a foil wrap together with refried beans and chicken breasts (I stuff them with cheese and garlic). It's a bit of work to preserve them, but it pays off in the form of delicious, easy meals later on.



  1. Day one:In a large bowl combine; Zucchini, onions, green pepper, red pepper and the salt Mix together cover and let stand over night.
  2. Day two: Next day rinse, drain well and put into a large pot then add mustard, garlic, cumin, vinegar, brown sugar, pepper flakes, salt,cornstarch, nutmeg, pepper, tomatoes and tomato paste.
  3. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Pour into sterilized jars and seal.
  5. Water bath jars if they have not sealed properly.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Arugula Salad with Fresh Pears, from Wendy Pfrenger

From Bistro Cooking at Home (by Gordon Hammsersley who has a bistro in Boston):

Arugula Salad with Fresh Pears, Gorgonzola, and Bacon
(6 servings)

3 slices of bacon, cut in half crosswise
1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
2 t. Dijon mustard
1 shallot, finely chopped
salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
3 fresh pears (or 12 fresh figs if you can find them)
6 oz. Gorgonzola or other blue cheese
1 large bunch arugula, stems removed (about 6 c.)
1 m. red onion, very thinly sliced

Cook bacon in a skillet until crispy. Drain.

In a small bowl combine vinegar, mustard, and shallot, and season with salt and
pepper to taste. Whisk in olive oil in a steady stream until it's all incorporated
and an emulsion forms.

Heat broiler.

Cut pears in half lengthwise. Core them. Melt unsalted butter in a skillet and
brown the cut side of hte pears. Turn the pears cut side up, sprinkle with salt and
pepper, and bake in a 350 degree oven until tender when pierced with a knife (time
will vary depending on ripeness and type of pear). When tender, place blue cheese
in the holes left from coring and broil until the cheese begins to melt.

Toss arugula and onion together in a bowl. Add just enough dressing to coat
lightly, reserving at least a tablespoon of the dressing. Divide the greens among
six plates. Place pears on the greens and drizzle with remaining vinaigrette. Top
each salad with a piece of bacon and serve immediately.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Turkish Collard Green Soup

Here are a couple of pretty similar soups that use two of the tougher greens in season right now.

• 1/4 cup unsalted clarified butter
• 1 small Spanish onion, finely diced (1/2 cup)
• 2 garlic cloves, minced
• 3/4 pound lean ground beef
• 1 tablespoon tomato paste
• 2 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely diced (1 1/2 cups)
• 3/4 cup great northern beans or small lima beans, soaked overnight and drained
• 6 cups beef stock
• 1 pound collard greens, trimmed (include tender stems) and coarsely chopped (about 3 cups)
• 1/4 cup orzo
• 4 sprigs fresh Italian parsley, trimmed and coarsely chopped
• 1/2 teaspoon Turkish red pepper or ground red pepper
• salt

Heat the butter in a heavy medium-size saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and cook gently for 2 minutes, stirring, until they're softened but not brown. Add the ground beef and cook for 2 minutes to brown all over. Stir in tomato paste, tomatoes, and beans. Add the stock, cover the saucepan, and bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the collards, orzo, parsley, and Turkish pepper. Season with salt and cook for another 30 minutes, stirring frequently, until the beans are tender but not falling apart and the collards are softened. Pour the soup into individual bowls and serve at once.
The Sultans Kitchen by Ozcan Ozan

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Portuguese Kale Soup

• 1 cup white beans
• 10 cups water, more if needed
• 2 large onions, chopped
• 1 pound kale, chopped
• 2 potatoes, peeled and cubed
• 1 6-ounce can tomato paste
• 1 teaspoon vinegar
• 4 garlic cloves, minced
• chorizo chunks (or Linguica, if you want a milder flavor)
• salt and pepper to taste

1. Soak beans overnight. Rinse in cold water.
2. Briefly saute all ingredients in a bit of olive oil. Add water to the same pot and bring to a boil. After it comes to a boil, lower heat to medium and cook slowly for two hours. Add more water if necessary. Stir from time to time so the soup does not burn to the bottom of the pot.
3. When soup is done add the seasonings and stir the soup well. Turn off heat, cover the soup pot, and let it stand 10 minutes before serving. Serve hot.

This recipe is adapted from: Twelve Months of Monastery Soups
Brother Victor-Antoine d'Avila-Latourrette

Simple Garlic Scape Pesto

We'll start off with something simple.

• 6-7 garlic scapes, chopped
• approx. 1 c. olive oil
• 1 c. grated pecorino romanao or asiago cheese* (The latter tastes best.)

On our first batch we skipped the cheese, we chopped the scapes in a mini food processor and added olive oil as needed, then we filled some little canning jars and put them into the freezer, mixed with a bit more oil it makes a great dipping sauce.
If you want to make an actual pesto, mix in the grated cheese by hand after the scapes are chopped up.