fmb 9-20-18

Farmers’ Market Box 9-20-18

This week’s local produce and featured farms:
Honey Crisp Apple - Fair Hills Apple Farm
Red Dandelion Greens - Terra Madre Gardens
Lemon Cucumbers - Tutti Frutti Farms
Chocolate Mint - Terra Madre Gardens
Valencia Oranges - Polito Family Farms
Barlett Pears - Wynola Farms
Pomegranate - Murray Family Farm
Japanese Sweet Potato - Milliken Family Farms
Sweet Dumpling Squash - Tutti Frutti Farms

Juicing Bag:

Strawberries - California Giant Inc
Carrots - Kern Ridge
Ruby Red Grapefruit – Better Life Produce
Kale - Foxy Organic
Valencia Oranges - Stehly Farms

Farmer’s Choice:
Barhi Dates - Dates by Davall
Sungold Cherry Tomatoes - Munak Ranch

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 hashtag #SpecialtyProduceFMB!

Juice Recipes

Kalelicious

3 Carrots

1 Bunch Kale

1/2 lb Strawberries

Sunset

1 Grapefruit

2 Carrots

1 Valencia Orange

1 Bunch Kale

Citrus Squeeze

1/2 lb Strawberries

1 Grapefruit

2 Valencia Oranges

Farmers’ Market Box Recipes

Red Dandelion Salad with Roasted Dumpling Squash
Serves 4

1 dumpling squash
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
One bunch red dandelion, tough stems removed, washed, spun dry and chopped
1 scallion, thinly sliced into rounds, using the white and tender green part
2 tablespoons orange juice
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/3 cup vegetable oil
Salt and pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, parchment or silicone.
2. Cut the squash in half from the stem to the root end. Scoop out the seeds and slice the squash into 1/2-inch half-moons. Transfer to a bowl, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, and spread onto the baking sheet in one layer. Roast for 15 minutes, turning once until the squash is tender, and beginning to crisp on the edges. Remove from the oven and set aside.
3. When ready to serve, put the dandelions and scallion into a salad bowl.
4. In another bowl, whisk together the orange juice, rice vinegar, mustard and oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss the dandelions with some of the dressing and plate the salad.
5. Lay slices of squash over the salad, and drizzle with some of the dressing.

Dumpling Squash Risotto
Serves 4 to 6
To dice the dumpling squash, cut in half, scoop out the seeds, and cut into 1/2-inch 1/2 moons. Remove the skin and dice the 1/2 moons.

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
1 cup finely diced dumpling squash (see note)
1/4 cup white wine (sauvignon blanc, pinot grigio or dry vermouth)
1 cup Carnaroli, Vialone, or arborio rice
3 to 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth kept simmering on the stove
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
Salt and pepper

1. In a Dutch oven, melt the butter with the oil, add the shallot and squash, sautéing until the shallot is softened, about 3 minutes.
2. Add the wine and bring to a boil.
3. Add the rice and stir to coat the rice.
4. Add 1/2 cup broth and stir until the liquid is almost absorbed.
5. Add another 1/2 cup broth. Continue adding broth, until the rice is just al dente.
6. Remove from the heat, add the butter and Parmigiano, taste for seasoning and adjust using salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Lemon Cucumber Pickles
Makes about 1 quart
Lemon cucumbers have lots of seeds, I prefer to remove them when I make pickles, it’s a personal choice.

1 pound lemon cucumbers scrubbed
1 red onion, cut in half, then cut into 1/2 moons
2 garlic cloves thinly sliced
1 tablespoon salt
½ teaspoon celery seed
½ teaspoon mustard seed
½ cup sugar
1 cup white vinegar

1. Cut the cucumbers in half, and scoop out the seeds, then slice into 1/2-inch thick slices.
2. In a glass bowl, combine the cucumbers, red onion and garlic. Sprinkle with the salt, celery seed and mustard seed, and let marinate at room temperature for 1 hour.
3. In a saucepan, heat the sugar and vinegar, until the sugar dissolves. Pour over the vegetables, cool to room temperature.
4. Pack the vegetables and brine into an airtight container and refrigerate overnight. The pickles will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Roasted Stuffed Japanese Sweet Potatoes
Serves 4
These are a great side dish to serve with pork or poultry.

1 pound Japanese sweet potatoes scrubbed
1/4 pound bulk sage flavored breakfast sausage
1/4 cup finely chopped scallions, using the white and tender green parts
2 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
Salt and pepper
1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, prick the potatoes with the sharp end of a paring knife, and roast for 35 to 45 minutes until tender. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees.
2. While the potatoes are roasting, in a skillet, cook the sausage until it is no longer pink, breaking up any large pieces. Add the scallions, and saute for 2 minutes. Drain and put into a mixing bowl.
3. Using an oven mitt, remove the potatoes from the oven and split in half lengthwise. Carefully remove the flesh and add to the bowl with the sausage. Set the skins aside.
4. Add the butter and mash the potatoes with the sausage and scallions. Add 1/2 cup of the cheese, and season with salt and pepper. Re-stuff the skins with the sausage mixture, and place on a baking sheet lined with foil, parchment or silicone. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the potatoes and bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the cheese is melted.

Chocolate Mint Brownies
Serves 6 to 8

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup packed chocolate mint washed and spun dry
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
1 cup unsalted butter
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 large eggs
1 1/3 all-purpose flour

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and coat the inside of a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a blender or food processor, process the sugar and mint until the mint is pulverized.
3. In a large saucepan, melt the chocolate with the butter, stirring until the chocolate is melted.
4. Remove from the heat, add the chocolate mint sugar mixtures, and the remaining ingredients, stirring to blend.
5. Pour into the prepared pan, and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
6. Cool on a wire rack before cutting.

For the Glaze
8 ounces semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1. In a saucepan over low heat, melt the chocolate in the butter and stir until the chocolate is melted.
2. Cool slightly and pour over the brownies in the pan. Cool completely before cutting.

Pear and Apple Crumble Bars
Serves 6 to 8

For the Crumble
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3/4 cup unsalted butter softened

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, coat the inside of a 13-by-9-inch pan with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine the ingredients, and blend together until it forms crumbs.
3. Press half of the mixture evenly into the pan. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown.

For the Apple and Pear Mixture
5 large eggs
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 Honey crisp apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch dice
3 Warren pears, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 cup chopped pecans

1. While the crust is baking, combine the eggs, sugar, cinnamon, apples, and pears in a mixing bowl.
2. Pour over the hot crust, sprinkle the mixture with the remaining crumble and the pecans.
3. Bake another 20 to 25 minutes until the crust is golden, and the filling is bubbling. Allow to cool completely before cutting into squares.

Praline Apple Bread Pudding
Serves 6 to 8

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 cups pecan halves
4 Honey Crisp apples
7 cups torn egg bread or good quality white bread
6 large eggs
2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus extra (optional) for sprinkling
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, plus extra (optional) for sprinkling
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1. Coat a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
2. Stir together the melted butter and both sugars in a medium-size bowl. Pour into the prepared dish so it coats the bottom evenly, then arrange the pecans on top.
3. Peel and core one or two apples (depending on the size) and slice 1/2-inch thick. Arrange the apple slices on the butter mixture in a decorative pattern. Set aside.
4. Peel and core the remaining apples and cut into 1/2-inch dice.
5. Combine the bread and chopped apples in a large bowl. Stir together the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
6. In another large bowl, beat together the eggs, cream, cinnamon sugar, and vanilla. Pour over the bread and apples and mix well with your hands.
7. Pour into the prepared pan, being careful not to disturb the sliced apples and pecans. Sprinkle with additional cinnamon and sugar if desired.
8. Do-Ahead: At this point, cover and refrigerate at for least 12 hours or overnight. Bring to room temperature before continuing.
9. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Bake the bread pudding for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F and bake until puffed and golden brown, another 30 to 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest for 5 minutes.
10. Run a knife around the inside of the pan and turn out the pudding onto a serving platter.

Pear and Gorgonzola Pizza
Serves 4

3 medium-size almost ripe but firm pears, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch wedges
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 pizza crust, homemade or store-bought
1 1/2 cups crumbled Gorgonzola
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or a silicone liner.
2. Arrange the pears on the baking sheet in a single layer and sprinkle with the brown sugar. Bake until golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes.
3. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Arrange the pears over the pizza crust, then sprinkle the Gorgonzola evenly over the pears. Drizzle with the olive oil and bake until the crust is crisp, and the cheese is melted and beginning to bubble and turn golden, 20 to 25 minutes.

Roasted Salmon with Hoisin Orange BBQ Sauce
Serves 6
Use this BBQ sauce with seafood, pork or poultry.

6 tablespoons canola oil
2 1/2 pound salmon filet
2 cloves garlic minced
2 teaspoons peeled and grated fresh ginger
Grated zest of 1 orange
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
6 scallions (white and tender green parts), thinly sliced on the diagonal, for garnish
1/2 cup sesame seeds for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Put 4 tablespoons of oil into a 13-by-9-inch baking dish and lay the salmon on the oil.
2. In a wide-bottomed saucepan or wok, heat the remaining canola oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, ginger, and orange zest and stir-fry until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the hoisin, soy sauce, orange juice, ketchup, and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Stir in the sesame oil and keep warm. Pour some of the sauce over the salmon in the baking dish and roast for 10 minutes per inch of thickness.
4. When the salmon is done, (registering 150 degrees on an instant read meat thermometer) allow to rest for 5 minutes, serve the salmon with warmed sauce on the side.

Fruited Farro Pilaf
Serves 6

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 1/2 cups pearlized farro
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup orange juice
2 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup golden raisins
2 oranges, peel and pith removed, cut into segments and chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped Italian parsley

1. In a large saucepan, heat the oil, and saute the onion for 2 minutes, until it is softened.
2. Add the farro and toss in the oil. Add the salt, orange juice, and broth, cover, and simmer, for 15 to 20 minutes, until the farro is almost tender.
3. Add the raisins and simmer another 5 minutes.
4. Remove from the heat, add the oranges, and parsley, and serve.

Bacon Wrapped Dates Stuffed with Parmigiano Reggiano
Serves 10 to 12

12 strips bacon cut in half crosswise
24 pitted dates
1/4 pound Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese cut into small pieces

1. Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until it has rendered some fat and begins to turn translucent; don’t let it brown at all. Remove from the pan and drain thoroughly on paper towels.
2. Make a slit in each date and stuff with a small piece of cheese. Wrap the date in a piece of bacon and secure with a toothpick if needed. Place the wrapped dates on a rack in a baking dish.
3. Do-Ahead: At this point, you can cover and refrigerate for up to 36 hours or freeze for up to 1 month.
4. Preheat the oven to 375° F and bake the dates until the bacon is crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven, drain the dates on paper towels, and set on a platter for serving. Thin shreds of any leftover Parmesan would make an awesome garnish.

Slow Cooker Lamb Tagine
Serves 6

½ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 pounds lamb shoulder meat, excess fat removed, cut into 1-inch pieces
½ cup olive oil
3 large onions coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
Pinch of saffron threads
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup beef broth
1 cup pitted dates quartered
¼ cup finely chopped cilantro

1. In a zipper-top plastic bag, combine the flour, salt and pepper, and add the meat, coating with the flour, shaking off any excess.
2. Heat the ¼ cup of oil in a large skillet and brown the meat a few pieces at a time, transferring the browned meat to the insert of a 5 to 7-quart slow cooker.
3. Add the remaining oil and sauté the onions, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, ginger and saffron, until the onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
4. Pour in the chicken broth and scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
5. Transfer the contents of the skillet to the slow cooker, add the beef broth and dates, cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours, until the lamb is tender.
6. Skim off any excess fat from the top of the sauce, stir in the cilantro, and serve on the warm setting with couscous.

Maple Date Granola
Makes about 4 cups

1/4 cup unsalted butter
2/3 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 cup chopped pecans
3 1/2 cup rolled oats
Grated zest of 1 orange
1 1/3 cup dates pitted and roughly chopped

1. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees, and line 2 baking sheets with parchment, aluminum foil or silicone.
2. Stir the butter, maple syrup, vanilla extract and salt in a saucepan, over a low heat until the butter has completely melted, then set aside.
3. Put the chopped nuts in a large mixing bowl along with the oats and orange zest, then pour the liquid ingredients over the top. Mix until everything has been coated well.
4. Spread out the granola in one layer and bake for 30 minutes, breaking up the granola pieces.
5. Stir in the dates, then bake for a final 10 minutes. Cool on the baking sheets, and store in airtight containers.

Pasta with Sungold Sauce
Serves 4 to 6

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove sliced
1 basket Sungold tomatoes, washed, stems removed, and quartered
Salt and pepper
1 pound linguine, spaghetti or farfalle, cooked 2 minutes short of al dente saving some pasta water
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano

1. In a skillet, heat the oil and saute the garlic until it is translucent. Remove from the pan.
2. Add the tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and saute until the tomatoes are softened, and saucy. Season again with salt and pepper if necessary.
3. Add the pasta to the skillet, and toss to coat, adding pasta water to create a creamy sauce.
4. Serve garnished with grated cheese.

Sungold Pasta Salad
Serves 6 to 8
You can easily add protein to this salad, 2 cups of cooked chicken or cooked seafood cut into bite sized pieces.

One pound farfalle, shell or penne pasta, cooked 3 minutes short of al dente
1 basket Sungold tomatoes, washed, dried, stemmed, and cut in half
3 ribs celery finely chopped
3 scallions finely chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped oregano
1/4 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
2 pickling cucumbers finely chopped
1 red bell pepper finely chopped
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves minced
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 cup crumbled Feta cheese

1. In a large salad bowl, cool the pasta (do not toss with any oil).
2. When the pasta is cooled, add the tomatoes, celery, scallions, oregano, parsley, cucumbers, red pepper, and season with salt and pepper.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, garlic, mustard oregano and oil. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Pour over the salad and toss to coat. Add the cheese and toss again.
5. Refrigerate the salad if not using right away. Remove from the refrigerator at least 90 minutes before serving.

@Diane Phillips  www.dianephillips.com   Blog:  www.cucinadivina.blogspot.comFollow me on Facebook (professional page) Twitter, and Pinterest

Download our FREE app HERE 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 If you haven’t joined yet, you can order a bag for next week on our FMB page!

fmb911318

Farmers’ Market Box 9-13-18

This week’s local produce and featured farms:
Honey Crisp Apple - Fair Hills Apple Farm
Bicolor Corn - Stehly Farms
Lemon Cucumbers - Tutti Frutti Farms
Heirloom Mix Eggplant - Black Sheep Produce
Fennel - Black Sheep Produce
Arugula - Tamai Family Farm
Salanova Lettuce - Terra Madre Gardens
Early Girl Tomatoes - Coastal Farms

Juicing Bag:

Carrots - Cal-Organic
Celery - Foxy Organic
Valencia Oranges
Italian Parsley - Lakeside Organic Gardens
Beets - Cal-Organic
Spinach - Classic Salads

Farmer’s Choice:
Dragonfruit - Wallace Farms
Concord Grapes - Murray Family Farms

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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 hashtag #SpecialtyProduceFMB!

Juice Recipes

Morning Glory

Beet

Carrot

Orange

v-8

Carrot

Celery

Parsley

Spinach

Tomato (not included)

Cucumber (not included)

Green Bell Pepper (not included)

Beet Goes On

Beet

Carrot

Celery

Parsley

Apple (in the FMB)

Farmers’ Market Box Recipes

BLT SALAD
Serves 6

1 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup milk
2 garlic cloves minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Salanova lettuce, washed, spun dry and chopped
3 Early girl tomatoes cut into wedges
6 strips thick cut bacon, cooked crisp, and crumbled
2 cups croutons

1. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, milk, garlic, salt, pepper, zest, and lemon juice.
2. Refrigerate for up to 5 days.
3. In a salad bowl, combine the lettuce, tomatoes, bacon and croutons.
4. Toss the salad with the dressing and serve.

Roasted Fresh Catch
Serves 4 to 6

2 1/2 pounds thick fleshed fish, such as cod, salmon, halibut or seabass
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves minced
2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
2 Early Girl tomatoes cored and sliced 1/2-inch thick
1/4 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Arrange the fish in a 13-by-9-inch baking dish.
3. In a bowl, combine the remaining ingredients, and spread over the fish.
4. Roast for 10 minutes per inch of thickness of the fish, or until it registers 160 degrees on an instant read meat thermometer. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Grilled Steak with Arugula Pesto Drizzle
Serves 4 to 6

For the Arugula Pesto
Makes 1 1/2 to 2 cups

1 cup packed wild arugula leaves
1 cup walnuts
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
1 tablespoon capers in brine, drained
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

1. In a food processor or blender, combine all the ingredients except the oil, pulsing to break up the nuts, and parsley.
2. With the machine running at 1/2 cup of the oil and add more if needed. Season with salt and pepper if needed.
3. Remove from the machine and pour into an airtight container, spooning 1 to 2 tablespoons of the oil over the top of the pesto, to preserve its green color.
4. Refrigerate for up to 1 week, freeze for up to 3 months.
5. Cooks’ Note: The pesto is terrific on baguette slices, or tossed into pasta, or pasta salad, or potato salad. It’s also delicious as a crust on fish, or chicken.

For the Steak

One 1 1/2 pound flank steak
1 1/2 cups olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
4 cloves garlic minced
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Put the flank steak into a 1 gallon zip-lock bag. In a bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. Pour over the steak, seal the bag, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Remove the steak from the bag and discard the marinade.
2. Preheat the grill, and grill for 3 to 4 minutes on each side until the internal temperature on an instant read meat thermometer registers 125.
3. Allow the meat to rest for 5 minutes before cutting against the grain into thin strips.
4. Arrange the meat on a platter, and drizzle with the pesto.

South of the Border Corn Salad
Serves 4 to 6

2 tablespoons lime juice, plus extra for seasoning 1/4 cup sour cream2 tablespoons mayonnaise1 serrano chile, stemmed and finely chopped
Salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves minced
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
3 cups corn cut from the cob
1 red bell pepper, cored, and finely chopped
4 ounces cotija cheese, crumbled (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro

1. In a salad bowl, combine the lime juice, sour cream, mayonnaise and chile. Season with salt.
2. Heat the oil in a large skillet, and saute the garlic and onion for 2 to 3minutes until fragrant.
3. Add the corn and bell pepper and toss in the garlic onion oil for 3 minutes.
4. Cool the mixture.
5. Add the corn mixture to the dressing, stir in the cheese and cilantro and serve.

Lemon Cucumber Corn Salad
Serves 4 to 6

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 ears corn, kernels cut from cobs
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons lime juice
¼ cup sour cream
¼ red onion, sliced thin
4 lemon cucumbers, scrubbed, quartered, seeds removed and cut into thin slices
3/4 cup feta cheese crumbled
¼ cup fresh basil leaves, torn

1. In a large skillet heat the oil, and saute the corn for 2 to 3 minutes, until the corn begins to turn translucent. Remove to a large bowl, and cool
2. Season with salt and pepper.
3. In another bowl, combine the lime juice, sour cream, and red onion. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Combine the corn, cucumber, and the sour cream mixture. Add the feta and basil leaves, season with salt and pepper and serve cold.

Roasted Fennel, Potatoes and Olives
Serves 4

6 medium Yukon gold potatoes, scrubbed, and cut into wedges
1 fennel bulb, root end trimmed, wispy ends removed and thinly sliced
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
2 Early girl tomatoes thinly sliced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 cup oil cured olives sliced

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and line a baking sheet with parchment, aluminum foil, or silicone.
2. In a bowl, combine the potatoes, fennel and oil. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Roast for 20 minutes, top the potatoes with the tomatoes, oregano and olives, and roast another 20 minutes until the potatoes are tender. Serve immediately.

Mom’s Apple Pie Cake
Serves 6 to 8

6 medium-size apples, cored, peeled, and sliced
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
To make the apple mixture, toss together the apples, cinnamon, sugar, and lemon juice in a large bowl.
Batter
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter or margarine, melted
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups pecan halves

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Coat a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer the apples to the prepared pan.
2. To mix the batter, combine the melted butter, flour, sugar, eggs, and pecans, stirring until blended.
3. Pour over the apples and bake until the top is crisp and golden, and the apples are bubbling underneath, 45 minutes to 1 hour.
4. Serve the cake warm or at room temperature with unsweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Roasted Ratatouille Pasta Sauce
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
1 medium eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
2 medium zucchinis trimmed and cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
4 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
One pound pasta cooked 3 minutes short of al dente (saving some of the pasta water to thin the sauce)
Freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese for garnish

2. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line two baking sheets with aluminum foil, or silicone baking liners.
3. 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.
4. Roast, for 20 minutes, stir the vegetables, and roast for another 15 to 20 minutes, until the vegetables begin to color and are tender.
5. Scrape all the vegetables and any juices into a blender or food processor, and process until smooth. Stir in the parsley and basil. Keep the sauce warm while the pasta cooks.
6. Drain the pasta, reserving some of the pasta water. Toss the pasta with the sauce, adding some of the pasta water if the sauce is too thick. Serve the pasta garnished freshly grated Parmigiano cheese.
7. Variation: If you have meat lovers in your house, sauté 1 pound of ground beef, turkey or chicken, drain off any excess water/fat, and add to the pasta sauce.
8. Another Variation: The ratatouille can also be made into a delicious soup, adding 2 cups of chicken or vegetable broth after pureeing the ratatouille. Heat the soup until it is serving temperature and serve.

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.

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.

@Diane Phillips  www.dianephillips.com   Blog:  www.cucinadivina.blogspot.comFollow me on Facebook (professional page) Twitter, and Pinterest

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