Happy 4th of July day off .
I figure our rack of NH pork ribs aren’t that unusual, so I have for you a delicious side.
Garbanzo bean, sliced hearts of palm, grated spring turnip ( From Enterprise Farm CSA)
Big scoop of large capers
About 2 oz fresh Blue Cheese dressing from the New Boston Farmers Market.
Toss and Wow!
As you might have gathered, I’m all about easy pleasures for summer time. I just came up with this and it’s a keeper .
3/4 Wild Berry Zinger Iced Tea (4 tea bags per quart)
1/4 Red wine that has been open or doesn’t cost much.
Shot of Agave Syrup
Big squeeze of lime
Stir well- pour over ice.
Finished here with a dollop of whole milk yogurt and a drizzle of White Truffle Honey. Truffle Honey is pretty easy to come by if you have a gourmet or specialty cheese store near you. I love it drizzled on a flatbread with caramelized onions, goat cheese and fresh arugula too.
For the soup:
A stick blender is my soup tool of choice all fall/winter.
Also unsweetened coconut milk and Madras Curry Powder are my favorites for this soup. Substitute as you like!
Cut a good size butternut squash in half and remove seeds. Oven to 350*
(you can clean the seeds and spice roast for garnishing the soup if you like)
Line a metal or glass roasting pan with parchment paper to prevent burning of the juices and oil.
Generously coat the inside of the squash with olive oil, enough so that some is dripping into roasting pan.
Toss about 6 cloves of garlic in oil and put in roasting pan also.
Roast until knife easily penetrates solid end of squash; 60-120 minutes if you get a giant squash! Let it cool a few minutes and then peel. Pour juices and oil from pan into soup pot, add your stock of choice. I like to make my own chicken stock and keep it frozen. Start simmering-
Purée with stick blender, add Madras Curry powder and about 2/3 cup coconut milk and purée again. Taste, and then add salt as the Madras Curry often includes salt. More time with the stick blender gives a velvet texture, but some like it more course. Finnish with yogurt and truffle honey right before serving. Sweet and spicy and earthy from the truffle. Yum.
A whole chicken and kolanche squash is roasting in the oven. Cider vinegar braised greens on the stove with super sweet late season, corn on the cob. A lobster pot full of foraged pears is boiling next to them. Tomorrow I’ll make pear cardamon butter. Something about Gigi’s first day of kindergarten today made me want to smell all these things. Autumn is in the air.
I try not to let my family eat cured or processed meats very often, the BLT is the exception. Here is one of many variations we enjoy.
Toasted pepper brioche from Iggy’s Bread- Reduced Sodium Natural Bacon from Whole Foods- Julienne collards and onions, braised in seasoned rice wine vinegar- sliced tomatoes from the garden- My “secret sauce” = Grilled hot Hungarian and green bell peppers( peeled and diced), garlic powder , cumin, touch of Sriracha , mayo and some beef juice that got in with grilled peppers.
Oh my do I have battle scars from this weekends blackberry foraging. On my first hike up with the dogs on Saturday to my “spot” , low and behold there is a women picking MY berries! I was just planning on scouting how the crop was doing but luckily I had a bag and after a few polite words I started in on the harvest.
Having only shorts and flip flops on, I had to retreat and get better prepared.
After those crazy hail and thunder storms passed I went back up with the proper foraging attire on. Since she had picked all the easy ones I had to go even deeper then usual. I found some areas that seemed to be favored by some large animal, as all the foliage in front of the thicket was flattened! Hopefully Fifi the Chihuahua will always warn me if a bear is approaching. All in all I got about 7lbs of blackberried and found some new territory too. I’ve frozen the berries because I think I’ll have one more trip and then I’ll make the jam. To preserve the wild tartness I use half the amount of sugar as berries.
12 cups berries=6cups sugar.
If you are in the Boston area, or I’ve just heard the Sydney, Australia area: you are in luck.
You have access to some of the best bread in the world. Iggy’s bread, my favorite, also makes a par baked pizza crust that is fantastic. In white or wheat this makes pizza on the grill a dream.
A couple of ones I’ve tried lately:
1. Greek Yogurt as sauce with some cracked pepper and sea salt, fresh pineapple and grilled hot wax hungarian peppers, fresh mozzarella and goat cheese, topped with a sprinkle of sliced basil.
2. Mayo as sauce (don’t laugh), jalapeno slices, grated mozzarella, bacon, and tomato slices fried in bacon fat. Grill until cheese is melting, then make two indents with a spoon and crack to eggs into the indents.
Grill about 7 more minutes and then run a knife through the yolk so it runs over pizza before serving.
Everything is better with bacon, but this flatbread was…oouch so good.
Anyone with a garden or CSA share usually ends up with more zucchini then they know what to do with. Since I have both a CSA share – plug for Enterprise Farm in Wately MA here, and my own garden, here’s what I’ve worked out.
MY Zucchini Bread:
3 Cups flour (2 whole wheat pastry)
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
3 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup vegetable oil
2 1/4 cup turbinado (or maple )sugar (sub 2 Tbsp. organic molasses for 1/4 cup sugar for healthier version)
3 tsp. vanilla
1 Giant oversized garden zucchini OR 3-4 cups grated and pressed in a clean kitchen towel to remove moisture
1 cups chopped nuts or raw pumpkin seeds(optional)
Grease and flour two 4×8 pans, oven 325.
Dry in one bowl, beat wet in another, add dry to wet.
Mix in zucchini and nuts/seeds, Bake 40-60 or until knife comes out clean.
Raw Zucchini Salad:
Zucchini rounds cut fine on a mandolin.
Mint Yogurt dressing: Fresh mint and any other green herbs you got. Love chives, basil, thyme and oregano works, as long as fresh. This dressing is a great way to use up your garden herbs that are over growing.
1 cup yogurt 1 clove garlic, some honey, salt, and pepper to taste. If you have a stick blender that’s the way to go. No need to chop anything!
2-4 cups grated zucchini with the moisture removed very thoroughly.
3-4 eggs depending on how much zucchini, you want it wetter for fritters.
1 finely diced small onion
Juice and zest from 1 lemon.
Instant mash potatoes until right consistency. The ones at Whole Foods are plain dehydrated potatoes and not full of additives and preservatives.
Serve with a garlic aioli.