October 5 weekly menu | fall table

Farm Fresh

arugula, beets, cabbage, celeriac, cilantro, lettuce, gourmet greens, kohlrabi, onions, peppers, potatoes, squash, tomatoes

What’s for Dinner?

Wednesday – south of the border, veggie style

squash & black bean enchilada casserole (Little Spice Jar)
mexican green salad (Epicurious)

Thursday – bowl of bounty

asian veggie salmon bowl (Skinny Taste)

Friday – soup’s on

fall orzo salad (Food 52)
celeriac, apple, potato soup (Tiny Urban Kitchen)

Saturday – super simple spaghetti

spaghetti with thyme-chili celeriac puree (Serious Eats)
beet salad with goat cheese & walnuts (Jennifer Segal, Serious Eats)

Sunday – debate distraction

pulled pork sandwiches (William-Sonoma Food Made Fast)
savoy cabbage slaw (New York Times)

pear-blackberry pie (LA Times)

Monday – jump start the week

spicy cabbage and chorizo soup (Saveur)
hearty country bread

Tuesday toasted cheese

toasted turkey, brie & apple sandwiches (Sunset)
apple-kohlrabi slaw (Strawberry Plum)

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Wednesday south of the border, veggie style

squash & black bean enchilada casserole (Little Spice Jar)
mexican green salad (Epicurious)

With winter squash, onions, and cilantro in my CSA basket, I jump right to this family-favorite enchilada casserole. It saves a bit of prep work to make a multi-layered veggie Mexican casserole instead of the traditional individual roll-up style enchiladas. I’ll improvise a little, using one of my winter squash, a can of fire roasted tomatoes, twelve corn tortillas, and an entire jar of store-bought enchilada sauce. For easier squash preparation, I bake the halves in a 400 degree oven for a half an hour or so before attempting to peel and cut into bite-sized chunks. Then, added to the black bean, tomato, onion, spice mixture, it’s just a matter of heating and melding the south-of-the-border flavors. When you’re ready to assemble, you really can’t go wrong, just keep layering, and it’ll all work out delightfully in the end. Add a green salad with a simple olive oil, lime, honey, cilantro vinaigrette, sprucing it up with whatever you have on hand – I’ll add a chopped fresh tomato, avocados, some sliced radishes I have on hand, pumpkin seeds, and a sprinkling of Mexican cheese.

Thursday – bowl of bounty

asian veggie salmon bowl (Skinny Taste)

I love the “bowl” concept for weeknight dinner ideas. Seems you can turn anything into a bowl, and make it just a bit more modern and exciting that the traditional protein/veggie/starch plate. This recipe I’ll use mostly as a starting point, but use my own seasonal vegetables. I’ll start with cooking up a big pot of brown rice, and just keep pulling veggies from the fridge that make nice Asian style additions. Delicious and healthy Pacific Northwest salmon is a wonderful protein choice – I’ll roast it in the oven with no prep at all. Divide the cooked salmon into large “chunks” for adding to the bowls. As for the vegetables,  I’ll choose my sweet peppers and an onion, roasting slices along with the salmon until lightly browned. I’ll also use kohlrabi, which I think of this as a relative of the radish and turnip, a little spicy, a little sweet, and wonderful crunch. I’ll cut it into matchsticks and keep raw for a nice variety in texture. With the zesty Asian-style sauce, this dinner makes a nice assemble-it-yourself option, with diners making their own perfect, tasty bowl.

Friday – soup’s on

fall orzo salad (Food 52)
celeriac, apple, potato soup (Tiny Urban Kitchen)

This is a hearty soup-and-salad dinner that’s sure to please. I was so excited to see a giant bunch of summery arugula in my box, and to mix it with an autumn squash and orzo with be so fabulous! The sprinkling of pumpkin seeds and blue cheese will make the texture and flavor so unique. I’ll add a soup not only highlighting my autumn root vegetables, but also including some of the Northwest’s gorgeous apples. It is a superb soup, with its mix of sweet and savory. And come prep time, you could surely add bacon-ey to the mix, crumbling bacon, prosciutto, or pancetta on top. With a fresh baguette, either browned into garlicky croutons to float on top, or served as is, soft and chewy for dipping, this is a dinner I’ll surely look forward to!

Saturday – super simple spaghetti

spaghetti with thyme-chili celeriac puree (Serious Eats)
beet salad with goat cheese & walnuts (Jennifer Segal, Serious Eats)

I have to admit, I still get a bit nervous when I see those celeriac bulbs. But I’ve done enough with them to know their great transformative abilities. From knobby, hairy, dirty to smooth, creamy, and delightful, with a mildly sweet parsley and celery flavor. In this recipe, the celeriac is cooked and mashed with garlic, fresh red chili, and thyme to create a silky sauce for your favorite pasta. Sprinkling with fresh parsley and parmesan would make it extra special. With my beets roasted and at-the-ready, this traditional beet salad with a honey dijon vinaigrette is a perfect accompaniment. Mix in any greens, if you like. We often enjoy the salad with no greens at all, just lots of favorite nuts and cheese.

Sunday –  debate distraction

pulled pork sandwiches (William-Sonoma Food Made Fast)
savoy cabbage slaw (New York Times)

pear-blackberry pie (LA Times)

I can hardly stand to watch! To make it maybe a smidge more bearable, we’ll pull out the T.V. trays and at least have a delicious dinner offering. I’ll use one of my large farm fresh onions in this slow-cooked pulled pork. With just a quick browning, and a few spices, it’s then just three hours in the oven or slow-cooker for the most tender, flavorful slider filling. I’ll add a slaw made with half a head of my savoy cabbage and grated apples. Add whatever other veggies strike your fancy – radishes would be great, as would some of this week’s kohlrabi. The simple apple cider vinegar dijon dressing will add just the right zest – this slaw will be fabulous as  stand-alone side, or right in with the pork in the sliders. img_8502For dessert, in the name of distraction, I’ll make a fall pear pie. Hard to resist those apples and pears toppling over at the farmers markets! Luckily, I’d frozen a few late August berries, perfect for this purpose. This recipe looks especially fall-ish and fabulous with the addition of cardamom and nutmeg. Served with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream…this’ll surely take your mind off the debate distress!

Monday – jump start the week

spicy cabbage and chorizo soup (Saveur)
hearty country bread

I am so excited to have clad verde in my dinner plans again. It’s a traditional Portugese “green broth” soup; the green could be nearly any sturdy leafy green. This week, caldo verde with cabbage it is. A one-pot dish, using my savoy cabbage, potatoes, and to kick things up a notch, some chorizo and red pepper flakes. Add some hearty bread for soaking up the delicious broth, and I’d say we’ve jump-started the week.

Tuesday – toasted cheese

toasted turkey, brie & apple sandwiches (Sunset)
apple-kohlrabi slaw (Strawberry Plum)

Yes, this is a bit different from the toasted cheese of my youth. Wonder Bread, margarine, and Kraft Singles. Boy, were they delicious though! I don’t know if they’d heard of such concoctions back then…a sandwich with apples on it? Such a simple concept to put the luscious combination of apples and cheese into a sandwich! If you have apple butter, great. If not, just the thinly sliced apples will do just fine, and add such a nice crispness. Having said that, apple butter is one of those fall things you should have around. On toast, on cheese sandwiches, on hunks of cheese, stirred into yogurt, in pancakes…the list goes on and on. And contrary to the name, it does not have butter in it. It is just called that because of its extraordinary smooth and creamy texture. As you can imagine, I’m having some on my sandwiches! Not a big fan of the recipe-suggested rye bread, so I’ll be using some other thick country bread and cooking the paninis in my cast iron grill pan, with another cast iron on top of the sammies as they cook to press them down. The accompanying slaw features crunchy kohlrabi, crisp seasonal apples, and a honey mustard dressing with apple cider vinegar. Add any hard cheese and nuts you love.

“What the Kale?!?”

Don’t panic and get out the compost bin if all of the sudden you have a giant veggie delivery coming your way, and you still have a fridge full.  Here are a few suggestions for preserving the bounty!  (Soups and stews freeze wonderfully in those gallon zip lock freezer bags.)

 

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