fmb 10-26

Farmers’ Market Box 10-26-17

This week’s local produce and featured farms:

Tatsoi – Sundial Farms

Japanese Sweet potatoes Milliken Family Farm

Lettuce Batavia - Coastal Farms

ZucchiniBlack Sheep Produce

Red Large Beets Black Sheep Produce

Fuyu Persimmons – Garcia Organics

Guavas – Garcia Organics

Monterrey Pear – Terry Ranch

Black Arkansas ApplePenryn Orchard

Redbor Kale Milliken Family Farm

Orange CarrotsWeiser Family Farm

Rosemary – Terra Madre

Juicing Bag:

Green Kale – Babe Farms

– Sundance

Romaine Lettuce – Deardorff

Strawberries – Cal-Giant Berry

Italian Parsley – Nunes

Farmer’s Choice:

Comice PearPenryn Orchard

Dragonfruit – Tony Do’s

Peaches – Sweet Peach Farms

Feature:
Concord Grapes – Murray Family Farms

Check out our YouTube Video highlighting all the produce in this weeks FMB:

Post your photos on Instagram with the hashtag #specialtyproducefmb or share them with the FMB community on our facebook page http://facebook.com/specialtyproduce!

When it’s about food…#specialtyproduce
Click the links above & search for products on our website with recipes attached

Below are some great recipes for you to try out with the produce from your box/bag. Let us know on our Facebook Page or through twitter if you tried any of them with the hastag #SpecialtyProduceFMB!

Juice Recipes
Courtesy of Drew Canole of Fitlife.tv

Sweet Kale
Green Kale
Strawberries
Lemon

Super Strawberries
Romain Lettuce
Green Kale
Strawberries

Green Monster
Italian Parsley
Romaine Lettuce
Lemon

Specialty Produce Recipe Suggestions
courtesy of Diane Phillips (Cucina Divina)

Roasted Salmon with Fuyu Persimmon Salsa
Makes about 2 cups

For the Salsa

2 Fuyu persimmons, peeled, and finely diced
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
1/2 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1 jalapeno, seeded, and de-ribbed, finely diced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon or lime juice
Salt and pepper

1. In a mixing bowl, combine the persimmon, onion, parsley, jalapeno, oil, lemon or lime juice and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 1 week.
2. If you have a garden full of persimmons, this salsa can be canned in a water bath (check on line for canning instructions) it makes a great hostess/holiday gift.

For the Salmon

2 1/2 pounds salmon filets (other thick fleshed fish can be substituted)
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Put the salmon filets in a 13-by-9-inch baking dish. In a bowl, combine the oil, Old Bay and lemon juice. Pour over the filets, turn the filets in the oil mixture until coated and roast for 10 minutes per inch of thickness, or until the fish registers 155 degrees on an instant read thermometer.
2. Remove from the oven, allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving, garnished with the persimmon salsa.

Guava Syrup
Makes about 2 cups

An all-purpose recipe, use the syrup over roasted chicken, grilled pork, in drinks, over desserts, pancakes or waffles.

1 lb. guavas, ends removed, quartered and seeded
1/3 cup sugar

1. Place the guavas in a large sauce pan and add just enough water to cover the guavas.
2. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and cook until the guavas are very tender.
3. Strain the cooked guavas and water through a fine mesh sieve to remove the skin. Press the guava flesh through the sieve.
4. Return the now seedless and skinless guava water to the stove top and stir in the sugar. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and let simmer for 30 minutes or until reduced by half. Let cool, refrigerate for up to 5 days, or freeze for 6 months.

Pasta with Redbor Kale
Serves 4 to 6

If you would like to add the beet greens to this, remove the stems, and saute with the kale
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
Pinch red pepper flakes
1 bunch redbor kale, tough stems removed, and cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
1/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 pound spaghetti or linguine, cooked 2 minutes short of al dente, saving some of the pasta water
1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano

1. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil and saute the garlic and red pepper for 30 seconds, until fragrant. Add the kale to the skillet and toss in the garlic oil. Add the broth, cover and simmer 5 minutes until the kale is tender. Uncover, and simmer another 2 minutes, until most of the liquid in the pan has evaporated.
2. Toss the pasta into the skillet, and turning it into the sauce, adding pasta water if necessary.
3. In a small bowl, combine the crumbs with the cheese.
4. Plate the pasta, and garnish with the bread crumb mixture.

Slow Cooker Chicken with Pears and Apples
Serves 6

¼ cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
2 apples, and 2 pears, peeled, cored, and cut into wedges
2 medium onions, cut into half moons
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
¼ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups apple cider
2 chicken bouillon cubes or 2 teaspoons chicken stock base
8 slices thick cut (Applewood smoked) bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
8 chicken breast halves, skin and bones removed
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ cup heavy cream
½ cup finely chopped Italian parsley

1. In a large skillet, melt the butter and sauté the apples, pears, onions and thyme until the onions begin to soften, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the mustard, sugar and cider, and transfer to the insert of a 5 to 7-quart slow cooker. Add the bouillon cubes, crushing them to dissolve, and set the cooker on warm while you sauté the chicken.
2. Wipe out the skillet, and cook the bacon until crisp, draining it on paper towels. Sprinkle the chicken with the pepper, and brown the chicken in the bacon drippings, transferring to the slow cooker insert. Cover and cook on low for 3 to 4 hours, until the chicken is cooked though and the apples and pears are tender. Stir in the cream and parsley, and serve on the warm setting.

Not Your Mama’s Sweet Potatoes
Serves 4 to 6

1 pound Japanese sweet potatoes, scrubbed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
3 to 4 tablespoons milk or cream
4 strips thick cut bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
Salt and pepper
1 cup grated Gruyère cheese

1. Put the potatoes into a water to cover, and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until tender.
2. Cool slightly, remove the skins, and put the flesh into a mixing bowl.
3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and coat the inside of a 9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray,
4. In a skillet, heat the butter, and saute the onion until it is almost caramelized, turning a light golden brown.
5. Transfer to the bowl with the potatoes, mash the potatoes with a fork, or potato mashed, add some cream or milk to make a smooth mixture. Stir in the bacon. Taste for salt and pepper and adjust.
6. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan, sprinkle with the cheese, and bake for 20 to 35 minutes until the cheese is melted and the potatoes are cooked through. Serve with poultry, pork or seafood.

Beet Carpaccio Salad with Buratta
Serves 4 to 6

1 bunch beets, scrubbed, and tops removed (see save the greens)
1/3 cup aged Balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup packed basil leaves, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper
1 head Batavia lettuce, washed spun dry and separated into leaves
2 balls buratta (if you can’t fine buratta, use fresh mozzarella)

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Put the beets onto the baking sheet, cover with aluminum foil, and roast for 50 to 60 minutes, until the beets are tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife.
2. When cool enough to handle, slip off the skins, and thinly slice the beets, put them into a shallow bowl.
3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the vinegar, oil, and basil. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Pour 1/2 of the mixture over the beets, and marinate at room temperature for at least 1 hour.
5. Put the lettuce leaves onto salad plates. Arrange beet slices on the lettuce, and put pieces of buratta in the center of the salad. Drizzle with the remaining dressing, and serve.

Save the Greens
Serves 4

Beets give you an extra serving of healthy greens, remove the tough stems, and saute. If you don’t use the sautéed greens right away they freeze beautifully, and can be added to soups, and sautés. They are delicious stirred into mashed potatoes and garnished with a bit of Parmigiano or your favorite cheese.

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, sliced
Pinch red pepper flakes
1 bunch beet greens, tough stems removed and cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
2 to 4 tablespoons water or broth
Salt and pepper

1. In a large skillet heat the oil, saute the garlic and pepper for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the greens, and saute to 3 to 4 minutes until wilted.
2. If the skillet is dry add a bit of water or broth, to help wilt the greens.
3. Season the greens with salt and pepper if needed, and serve warm. They are a terrific bed for grilled poultry or meats.

Grilled Lemon Rosemary Chicken
Serves 6

I usually grill extra chicken and freeze it to toss into salads, and Greek lemon orzo soup. Using a strong herb like rosemary with chicken, gives the chicken lots of extra flavor.

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, tenders removed (use for another purpose)

1. In a zipper-top plastic bag, combine the oil, lemon juice, rosemary, salt, pepper, and garlic, shaking to blend. Add the chicken, turning to coat it, and seal. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
2. Build a hot charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill, or a grill pan or the broiler for 10 minutes. Remove the chicken from the marinade and grill or place on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil or a silicone liner and broil until cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes per side.
3. Do-Ahead: At this point, you can let cool, cover, and refrigerate for up to 8 hours or freeze for 6 weeks. Serve cold or bring to room temperature before serving.

Rosemary Cranberry Sauce
Makes about 3 cups

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
One 12-ounce bag fresh cranberries, picked over for stems
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
Grated zest of 1 lemon

1. Melt the butter in a 3-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and rosemary, and cook, stirring, until the onion softens, 3 to 4 minutes.
2. Add the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, and continue boiling until the cranberries begin to pop and the mixture begins to thicken, 4 to 6 minutes.
3. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for another 10 minutes, until the sauce is thickened, and the cranberries have all popped, releasing their juices.
4. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
5. Do-Ahead: At this point, you can cover and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks or freeze for up to 2 months. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Warm Rosemary Olives
Serves 6

¾ cup Kalamata olives, pitted
¾ cup large green pitted Spanish olives (or stuffed with pimiento)
1/3 cup Nicoise olives, pitted or small green Picoline olives, pitted
¾ cup olive oil
2 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
3 cloves garlic, cut in half
Pinch red pepper flakes
2 lemons

1. Combine the olives, oil, rosemary, garlic and red pepper flakes in a large mixing bowl, stirring to coat. Cover or transfer to a zipper top plastic bag, and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with a silicone liner, or aluminum foil. Remove the zest from one lemon and add it to the olives in the bag.
3. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into the bag, and squeeze the bag to distribute the zest and juice evenly.
4. Pour the olives and juices onto the baking sheet, arranging them in one layer. Bake for 10 minutes, until heated through. Remove from the oven, drain and serve in a bowl with toothpicks.

Tatsoi and Zucchini Rice
Serves 4 to 6

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 garlic clove, minced
2 zucchini, ends trimmed, and grated
1 bunch Tatsoi, washed, and spun dry
Salt and pepper
1 1/2 cups long grain rice
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup milk
Salt and pepper
1 cup crumbled goat cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and coat the inside of a 13-by-9-inch casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a large skillet, melt the butter and oil, saute the garlic for 30 seconds, until fragrant, add the zucchini and Tatsoi, and saute until the Tatsoi is wilted, and the liquid in the pan has almost evaporated.
3. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Add the rice, and saute for 1 minute. Pour in the broth and milk, and transfer the contents of the pan to the prepared baking dish.
5. Stir in the goat cheese, and sprinkle with the Parmigiano.
6. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the rice has absorbed the liquid in the pan and the rice is tender.
7. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Carrot Soup with Carrot Top Pesto
Serves 4 to 6

For the Soup

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1 bunch carrots, scraped, and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 pears, peeled, cored and chopped coarsely
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup packed basil, finely chopped
Salt and pepper

1. In a Dutch oven, heat the oil, saute the onion and garlic, for 2 to 3 minutes, until the onion is softened.
2. Add the carrots, and pears, tossing in the oil.
3. Slowly pour in the broth and simmer for 20 to 25 minutes until the carrots are tender, and almost falling apart.
4. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup. Add the cream and basil, season with salt and pepper, and serve warm.

For the Pesto
Using Carrot tops for pesto is super easy, and you can freeze the pesto to use later for a punch of flavor in your meals. If you want to make a paste first, use 1/3 cup oil, if you want to make a drizzle use 1/2 cup of oil. I usually make a paste, then freeze it, I can always add more oil later. This pesto is great on bruschetta, drizzled over steaks, poultry, vegetables and soups.

2 cups packed carrot tops, stems removed
1/2 cup Marcona almonds (pine nuts, pecans or walnuts will do in a pinch)
2 garlic cloves, minced
Pinch red pepper flakes
1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
1/3 to 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1. In a food processor or blender, put the carrot tops, almonds, garlic, red pepper, and cheese. Pulse on and off to break up the carrot tops and almonds.
2. With the machine running, add the oil slowly, until it forms a paste (see instructions in head note)
3. Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months.

Choice

Pear Upside Down Cake
Serves 6 to 8

3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 medium firm-ripe pears, peeled, cored and thinly sliced

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, coat the inside of a 9-inch round baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a skillet, melt the butter, add the sugar, and cook until the sugar is dissolved, and bubbling.
3. Pour the butter mixture into the prepared pan, and arrange the pears in a decorative pattern over the butter. Set aside while making the batter.

For the Cake

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup whole milk
1-1/2 tsp. vanilla paste or extract

1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together the butter and brown sugar, until fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, and gradually add the flour, baking powder, ginger, cinnamon, and salt.
2. Stir in the milk and vanilla, and beat until smooth.
3. Carefully pour over the pears in the baking dish.
4. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow the cake to rest for 10 minutes, run a knife around the edge of the pan.
5. Turn a cake plate upside down on top of the cake pan and, using pot holders, carefully invert the cake pan onto the plate. Serve the cake warm with vanilla ice cream, or unsweetened whipped cream.

Dragon Fruit Smoothie
Serves 2

1 Dragon fruit, peeled, and coarsely chopped
1/2 cup orange juice
1 cup hulled strawberries
2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice
1 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup ice

1. In a blender, combine the dragon fruit, orange juice, berries, lemon juice and yogurt. Puree the mixture.
2. Add the ice, and puree again.
3. Serve in a tall glass.

Peach Praline Cobbler
Serves 4 to 6

3 peaches, peeled, pitted, and cut into wedges
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Pinch grated nutmeg
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cups sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup pecan halves

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and coat the inside of a 9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray,
2. In a bowl, combine the peaches, brown sugar, cornstarch and nutmeg. Pour into the prepared baking dish, and set aside.
3. In a bowl, combine the butter, flour, sugar, egg and pecans, stirring to blend.
4. Pour over the peaches in the pan, bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until the peaches are bubbling, and the cobbler is golden brown. Allow to cool for about 20 minutes before serving with vanilla ice cream.

Prosciutto Wrapped Peach Bruschetta
Serves 4 to 6
For the Bruschetta

One baguette sliced into1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees; line a baking sheet with silicone or parchment. Lay the baguette slices in one layer on the baking sheet.
2. Brush the baguette slices with oil, and bake for 10 minutes until the slices begin to turn golden brown.
3. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
4. The crostini can be stored at room temperature for 2 days, or frozen for one month.

For the Peaches

2 peaches, pitted, and cut into wedges
1/4 pound thinly sliced Prosciutto di Parma
Olive oil
4 ounces soft cheese such as goat cheese or robiola
Aged balsamic vinegar

1. Preheat the broiler for 10 minutes. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
2. Wrap 1/2 slice of prosciutto around each peach wedge, securing with a toothpick.
3. Brush each side of the prosciutto with some oil, and broil the peaches on one side, until they are crisp turn and broil the other side. You will probably only need 2 minutes on each side.
4. Spread some of the cheese on the toasted bread, top with a peach wedge, and drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

Feature:

Small Batch Concord Grape Jam
Makes two pints

2 pounds concord grapes washed, and stems removed
3 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
Juice of half a lemon
Pinch of salt

1. Put the ingredients into a Dutch oven, and bring to a boil, simmer uncovered for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until reduced by 1/3.
2. When the jam is reduced strain it into a large bowl, pushing down to save the pulp, and scraping the bottom of the sieve.
3. Return the strained jam to the Dutch oven, and bring to a boil. Simmer another 10 minutes.
4. Pour into sterilized jars and refrigerate or process in a water bath to can.

Concord Grape Cheesecake Bars

Serves 6 to 8

For the Topping
4 cups concord grapes, washed, and stems removed
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Cook the concord grapes in a saucepan 5-8 minutes, stirring and mashing frequently with a spoon. Once your mixture is almost completely mashed and resembles jam, remove from heat.
Using a fine-mesh sieve, strain the mixture into a small bowl, pressing down with a wooden spoon to get the most liquid and pulp as possible. Once you have about 1/2 cup set aside to cool and discard the skins and seeds.
For the Cheesecake Bars
Graham Cracker Crust

1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 18 whole crackers)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
1. To make the crust, in a large bowl, combine the crust ingredients and press into the bottom and halfway up the sides of the pan. Set aside.

Cream Cheese Filling

Three 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
5 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup grape syrup (above)

2. Preheat the oven to 325° F. Coat a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
3. In a large bowl, using with an electric mixer, cream together the cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add the vanilla and beat until the filling is smooth. Pour into the crust, dollop the filling with some of the grape mixture and swirl it through the filling, like marbling. Bake until set, 35 to 40 minutes.
4. Remove from the oven and immediately cut into squares. Allow the cheesecake to cool completely before serving. Cheesecake is best at room temperature. To store the cheesecake, cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.

Recipes Provided By:
Diane Phillips www.dianephillips.com and www.cucinadivina.blogspot.com

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fmb 10-19

Farmers’ Market Box 10-19-17

This week’s local produce and featured farms:

Broccolini – The Garden of…

Lettuce Red oak – Coleman Family Farm

Russian Banana Fingerling Potatoes - Weiser Family Farm

Rainbow Swiss CardBlack Sheep Produce

Sweet lime Koral’s Tropical Fruit Farm

Asian Pears – Lee Farms

CantaloupeBe Wise Ranch

Italian eggplant Black Sheep Produce

Green and Yellow mixed eight ball Squash – JR Organics

Mixed Heirloom Tomato Be Wise Ranch

Mixed Herbs Bunch – Windrose

Juicing Bag:

Black Kale – Babe Farms

OrangesStehly Family Farms

Red Beets – Coke Farms

Green Swiss Chard – Cal-Organic

Fennel – Lakeside Organic Gardens

Farmer’s Choice:

Figs – People Plus Organics

Red Grapes – Murray Family Farms

Green Dragon – Dragonberry Produce

Feature:
Chocolate PersimmonsPenryn Orchard

Check out our YouTube Video highlighting all the produce in this weeks FMB:

Post your photos on Instagram with the hashtag #specialtyproducefmb or share them with the FMB community on our facebook page http://facebook.com/specialtyproduce!

When it’s about food…#specialtyproduce
Click the links above & search for products on our website with recipes attached

Below are some great recipes for you to try out with the produce from your box/bag. Let us know on our Facebook Page or through twitter if you tried any of them with the hastag #SpecialtyProduceFMB!

Juice Recipes
Courtesy of Drew Canole of Fitlife.tv

Super Fennel
Fennel
Handful of kale
Beet

Powerful Kale
Handful of green kale
Orange
Green Chard

Orange Punch
Fennel
Oranges
Beets

Specialty Produce Recipe Suggestions
courtesy of Diane Phillips (Cucina Divina)

Pasta with Sausage and Broccolini
Serves 4 to 6

1/2 pound bulk Italian sweet sausage
2 garlic cloves, minced
Pinch red pepper flakes
1/2 pound broccolini, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (any really tough stems removed)
1/4 cup vegetable or chicken broth
Salt and pepper
1 pound spaghetti or linguine, cooked 2 minutes short of al dente
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano, or Parmigiano Reggiano

1. In a large skillet, cook the sausage, breaking up any large pieces, until the sausage is no longer pink. Remove all but 2 tablespoons of fat from the pan.
2. Add the garlic and red pepper, and saute for 1 minute.
3. Add the broccolini, stir to mix in.
4. Pour in the broth, cover and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes until the broccolini is tender. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Add the cooked pasta to the skillet, and toss to combine. Add a bit of hot pasta water if needed to make a creamy sauce. Sprinkle with 1/2 the cheese, and continue to toss the pasta until the sauce is creamy.
6. Plate the pasta, and garnish with the remaining cheese.

Chicken and Squash Bake
Serves 6
This is a great fall dinner, if you would like you can prepare this in smaller casserole dishes, and freeze for 2 months, giving you gold in your freezer.

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
6 sage leaves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons finely chopped thyme
4 cups coarsely grated squash (yellow and 8-ball)
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup milk
3 cups cooked chicken, shredded or cut into bite sized chunks
Salt and pepper
2 cups fresh bread crumbs
1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and coat the inside of a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish with non-stick cooking spray. (you can also divide this in half and use two 8-inch casserole dishes)
2. In a large skillet, heat the butter, and oil, add the onion, sage and thyme, and cook until the onions begin to soften.
3. Add the squash, season liberally with salt and pepper, and saute until the liquid in the pan has evaporated.
4. Add the flour, and whisk (with a flat whisk) for 2 minutes.
5. Add the broth, and bring to a boil.
6. Add the milk and chicken and bring to a boil.
7. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.
8. Transfer to the baking dish.
9. In a small bowl, blend together the bread crumbs, cheeses, and parsley. Drizzle with the oil, until the crumbs begin to come together.
10. Sprinkle over the top of the casserole.
11. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the casserole is bubbling, and the crumbs are golden brown. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving. This is delicious over rice, or orzo pasta.

Roasted Asian Pear Salad
Serves 4

2 Asian Pears, cored, and cut into 8 wedges
1/2 cup Raw sugar
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon garlic salt
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
One head red oak Lettuce, washed, spun dry and chopped
1/2 cup toasted sliced almonds for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, parchment or silicone.
2. Dip the pear wedges into the raw sugar, and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, turn the pears, and roast another 10 minutes, until golden brown.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, oil, vinegar, lemon juice, Worcestershire, garlic salt, mustard, and curry powder.
4. Put the lettuce into a salad bowl, and toss with the dressing.
5. Plate the salad, top each portion with pear wedges, drizzle with a bit of dressing, and garnish with sliced almonds.

Slow Cooker Minestrone
Serves 6 to 8

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup coarsely chopped sweet yellow onion
1 cup coarsely chopped carrots
1 cup coarsely chopped celery
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
3 heirloom tomatoes, cored, and coarsely chopped
¼ cup dry white wine
2 medium zucchini, scrubbed and cut into ½-inch rounds
One 14 to 15-ounce can small white beans, rinsed and drained
One bunch rainbow chard, tough stems removed, and cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
One piece of rind from Parmigiano Reggiano, cut into ½-inch pieces
6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ pound cooked small pasta (shells, ditali, or other short tubular pasta)
½ to 1 cup finely shredded Parmigiano Reggiano cheese for garnish.

1. In a large skillet, heat the oil, and add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, and rosemary, sautéing until the vegetables begin to soften about 4 to 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, and wine, and allow some of the liquid to evaporate in the pan. Transfer the contents of the skillet to the insert of a 5 to 7-quart slow cooker.
2. Add the zucchini, beans, chard, rind (if using) broth, salt and pepper. Cover the slow cooker and cook for 3 to 4 hours on high or 6 to 8 hours on low. Stir in the cooked pasta at the end of the cooking time, cover and set on warm until ready to serve.
3. Serve the soup garnished with shredded Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.

Cook’s Note: You can add chicken, leftover turkey, sausage, or other vegetables that you have leftover to this soup.

Roasted Ratatouille
Serves 6

1 red onion, sliced 1/2-inch thick
One red bell pepper, cored and cut into 1/2-inch slices
One orange or yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch sliced
2 Italian eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
2 medium zucchini trimmed and cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds—cut 8-ball squash into chunks like the eggplant
4 heirloom tomatoes, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
6 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons good quality balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons dried herbs de Provence
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1/4 cup finely chopped basil

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil, or silicone baking liners.
2. In a large bowl, toss the onions, peppers, eggplant, zucchini, garlic, olive oil, rosemary, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Spread the vegetables evenly over both sheets.
3. Roast, for 20 minutes, stir the vegetables, and roast for another 15 to 20 minutes, until the vegetables begin to color and are tender.
4. Serve the ratatouille hot or at room temperature as a side dish with grilled meats, poultry or seafood. It is also delicious tossed with pasta.

Coconut Lime Bars
Serves 6 to 8

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts

1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Coat a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray.
2. Combine To make the crust, combine the crust ingredients in a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles small peas. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan, using your knuckles to press down.
3. Bake until browned, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes.

For the Filling
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 large eggs
Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

1. To make the filling, combine the filling ingredients in the food processor and process until smooth. Pour over the baked crust and bake until the filling is set, another 20 minutes.
2. Let cool completely, then cut into twenty-four24 2two-inch squares and dust with confectioners’ sugar.
3. Do-Ahead: At this point, you can cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 2 months.

Loaded Fingerling Potatoes
Serves 4

1 pound fingerling potatoes
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
6 strips bacon, cooked crisp, and crumbled
3 scallions, finely chopped, using the white and green parts
1/2 cup sour cream or Greek style yogurt

1. Put the potatoes into a saucepan with water to cover, and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, until the potatoes are tender. Drain the potatoes.
2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, silicone, or parchment.
3. Put the olive oil, salt and pepper onto the baking sheet, and stir to blend. Put the potatoes onto the baking sheet, press down on the potatoes until they are about 1/2-inch thick. (this is messy)
4. Sprinkle the potatoes with the cheese, bacon and scallions, and roast for 20 minutes until the cheese is melted and the potatoes are crispy.
5. Serve the potatoes dolloped with the sour cream.

Prosciutto and Melon Salad with Mint
Serves 6

One cantaloupe, peeled, seeded and thinly sliced
6 thin slices Prosciutto di Parma, cut into julienne
6 mint leaves, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons lime juice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper

1. Arrange the cantaloupe on a serving platter.
2. Sprinkle the prosciutto and mint over the cantaloupe.
3. Drizzle with the lime juice and oil.
4. Grind pepper over the salad and serve at room temperature.

Choice

Chicken Waldorf Salad
Serves 4 to 6

First served at the Waldorf Astoria, hence the name, I’ve updated this salad with a vinaigrette, rather than the traditional mayonnaise dressing.

For the Apple Cider Dressing
2/3 cups vegetable oil
1/3 cup apple juice or cider
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
1/8 teaspoon dry mustard
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1. In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients. Taste for salt and pepper and adjust. The dressing can be refrigerated for up to 1 week.

For the Salad

2 cups bite-size pieces of cooked chicken
2 ribs celery, finely chopped
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
2 Green Dragon apples, cored and cut into 1/2-inch dice
One head red oak lettuce, washed, spun dry and chopped
1 cup toasted pecans

1. To assemble the salad, in a large bowl, combine the chicken, celery, raisins, onion, and apples, then toss with about 1/4 cup of the dressing.
2. When ready to serve, place put the greens into a large salad bowl and add the chicken mixture and pecans. Toss with some of the dressing until everything is coated. Add more dressing if it is needed, and re-toss.

Roasted Red Grape Focaccia
Serves 6
1 cup warm Water
1 1/2 teaspoons Active Dry Yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
2 cups Bread Flour
1/2 teaspoon Salt
3 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
6 ounces crumbled goat cheese
2 tablespoons chopped rosemary (you can sub in your favorite herb here, sage, thyme, or marjoram would be great as well)
1 1/2 cups red grapes, cut in half
2 teaspoons Fleur de sel

1. In a measuring cup, combine the water, yeast and sugar. The mixture should bubble.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine the bread flour, and salt.
3. Add the yeast mixture, and stir until the dough comes together.
4. Turn out onto a lightly floured board, and knead the dough for 2 to 3 minutes.
5. Oil a bowl, and turn the dough ball in the oil. Cover with a towel, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour until it doubles in size.
6. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, oil a sheet pan with the remaining olive oil.
7. When the dough has risen, punch it down, and roll it out. Transfer it to the oiled pan, spreading it to the sides.
8. Spread the goat cheese, and rosemary over the top of the focaccia. Push the grapes into the dough, and sprinkle with the Fleur de Sel.
9. Cover and let rise again for 30 to 40 minutes.
10. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until the grapes are softened, the cheese is melted, and the crust is golden brown and crisp.
11. Allow the rest for 5 minutes, before cutting into squares.

Marinated Figs and Mozzarella Salad
Serves 4 to 6

One head red oak lettuce, washed, spun dry and chopped
2 fresh mozzarella balls, sliced 1/2-inch thick
4 slices Prosciutto di Parma, cut into julienne
4 to 6 figs, cut into wedges
1/3 cup aged balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped basil
Salt and pepper

1. Arrange the lettuce on a serving platter.
2. Cover with the mozzarella, and prosciutto.
3. Arrange the fig wedges over the mozzarella.
4. In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, oil, and basil. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Pour over the salad, and serve at room temperature.

Feature:

Persimmon Bread
Makes two loaves

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 to 2 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup unsalted butter melted and cooled to room temperature
4 large eggs
2/3 cup Cognac, bourbon or whiskey (If you want this to be alcohol free, use apple juice)
2 cups persimmon puree (from about 4 very ripe persimmons)
2 cups chopped pecans
2 cups golden raisins

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and coat the inside of two standard loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda and nutmeg.
3. Make a well in the center then stir in the butter, eggs, liquor, persimmon puree then the nuts and raisins. Stir until blended.
4. Transfer to the prepared loaf pans, and bake 1 hour, until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow to cool for 30 minutes before removing from the pan.
5. The bread keeps for about 1 week when stored in an airtight container, or can be frozen for up to 6 weeks.

Ginger Spice Persimmon Cake

1 cup persimmon puree (about 4 large)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
1 cup chopped walnuts
grated zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup chopped dates

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Coat the inside of a 9-inch spring form pan with non-stick cooking spray.
2. Combine the flour, salt, and spices in a bowl.
3. Cream the butter and sugar until smooth, then beat in the egg, vanilla, and finally the persimmon puree. Add the flour mixture and stir until just mixed.
4. Fold in the walnuts, lemon zest, raisins, and dates.
5. Transfer the batter into the spring form pan and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes or so before removing the rim. Allow to cool before serving.

Recipes Provided By:
Diane Phillips www.dianephillips.com and www.cucinadivina.blogspot.com

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