Lemon Roasted Green Beans

Another goodie from Highland Orchards – beautiful green beans.

This is another recipe that was a hit with 6 year-old Cam – roasted green beans with a hint of lemon and topped with some Parmigiano reggiano. I think he is finally rediscovering his palate.

The beans were a very nice side dish with my cornmeal-crusted tilapia and rice.

Lemon Roasted Green Beans

from fashionablefoods.com

2 lbs. Green Beans, cleaned and trimmed (form Highland Orchards)

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 Lemon, juiced

Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

2 Tablespoons Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese


Preheat the oven to 425º.

Toss the green beans with the olive oil, lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper. Place them evenly on a large baking sheet.

Roast the green beans for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly golden and crisp-tender.

Transfer the green beans to a serving platter and top with fresh parmesan cheese, if desired.

Categories: Green Beans, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Sourdough Crackers

I decided I had to share these with you since they got really high marks from Cam, my very hard to please 6 year old, with discerning tastes.

The cool thing for me about these is they are made with the cup of sourdough starter I would normally discard each week when I feed it.

The recipe called for 2 Tbsp rosemary, I really cut that back to about 1 tsp and added 1 tsp dried thyme from my garden. It gave the crackers just a hint of herb, just right for us.

Sourdough Crackers

from King Arthur Flour

1 cup King Arthur Premium Whole Wheat Flour

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1 cup unfed (“discarded”) sourdough starter

1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature

2 tablespoons dried herbs of your choice, optional (I used 2 tsp – rosemary and thyme (from my garden))

olive oil for brushing

coarse sea salt for sprinkling on top


Mix together the flour, salt, sourdough starter, butter, and herbs to make a smooth (not sticky), cohesive dough.

Divide the dough in half, and shape each half into a small rectangular slab. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes, or up to a couple of hours, until the dough is firm.

Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Very lightly flour a piece of parchment, your rolling pin, and the top of the dough. Working with one piece at a time, roll the dough to about 1/16″ thick. The dough will have ragged, uneven edges; that’s OK. Just try to make it as even as possible. Transfer the dough and parchment together onto a baking sheet. 

Cut the dough into 1 1/4″ squares; a rolling pizza wheel works well here. Prick each square with the tines of a fork.

Lightly brush with oil and then sprinkle the salt over the top of the crackers.

Bake the crackers for about 20 minutes, until the squares are starting to brown around the edges. When fully browned, remove the crackers from the oven, and transfer them to a cooling rack. 

Store airtight at room temperature for up to a week; freeze for longer storage. Enjoy!

 Yield: about 100 crackers, 20 servings.

Categories: Bread, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 6 Comments

Broccoli Rabe Pesto and Pasta

On my visit to Highland Orchards I picked up a bunch of their broccoli rabe. I had a Mario Batali recipe for broccoli rabe pesto that I had been wanting to play with, so this seemed like a good opportunity to do that.

The color of the finished pesto had to make me smile – it looked more like guacamole than pesto (but it definitely tasted like pesto, not guac).

I liked the sharp flavor the mustard added to what was otherwise a fairly mild pesto. I also added some pecorino Romano to enhance that even more. To serve, we topped the pasta and pesto with additional freshly grated parmigiano reggiano.

The recipe is scalable, I had a large bunch, about 1 pound, and made a good 3 cups of pesto.

Broccoli Rabe Pesto and Pasta

adapted from Mario Batali’s Broccoli Rabe Pesto

2 Tbsp Kosher salt

1 lb broccoli rabe, stems trimmed (from Highland Orchards)

4 – 6 garlic cloves, depending on the size

1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted

2 tsp dijon mustard

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano reggiano

1/4 cup Locatelli romano

Pasta, cooked according to package directions (amounts depend upon the number of people you are serving)


Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add Kosher salt. Add the Broccoli rabe and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Using a spider or slotted spoon, transfer the broccoli rabe to a bowl of ice water.  Drain well.

In a food processor, with the motor running, drop in the garlic and finely chop it.  Add the broccoli rabe and almonds and pulse until finely chopped.

Add the mustard and blend well.

With  the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil.  Transfer to a small bowl and stir in the cheeses.

Makes about 3 cups of pesto.  Enjoy!  Pesto can be stored in the refrigerator in a tightly sealed glass jar, topped with a thin layer of olive oil for about a week.  Or can be placed in sealed plastic bags and frozen for a few months.

Categories: Kosher, Main Dish, Pasta, Pesto, Recipe | Tags: | Leave a comment

Chicken and Rice with Almonds & Craisins

Fresh chicken from Highland Orchards served as the protein for my Persian-inspired pilaf for Tu B’Shevat.

To really make it Persian I would have used barberries instead of cranberries, but I did not think of that until too late to soak them. If you don’t have advieh, you can use allspice and cinnamon unequal parts. It is a subtle difference, but I prefer advieh.


This looked and smelled wonderful. And it was quite easy to prepare, so, enjoy!


Chicken and Rice with Almonds & Craisins

Adapted from Chicken Pilaf with Nuts and Craisins by Gitta Bixenspanner

1/3 tsp Kosher salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1 1/2 lb  chicken skinless, boneless chicken breasts (from Highland Orchards)

2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 cup slivered almonds

¼ cup craisins or soaked barberries

3/4 cups basmati rice

1/2 tsp advieh

¼ tsp ground cumin

1 cup chicken stock

3/4 cup water


Sprinkle salt and pepper all over chicken.


In large nonstick skillet, heat half of the oil over medium-high heat, brown chicken, about 10 minutes. Transfer to plate.


In same pot sauté onion and garlic for 10 minutes or until brown; adding some oil if needed.


Stir in almonds and craisins; cook, stirring, until nuts darken, about 3 minutes.


Add rice, advieh, cumin and remaining salt; cook for 2 minutes, stirring to coat grains.


Add stock and water. Nestle chicken in rice mixture; bring to boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and cook until rice is tender and juices run clear when chicken is pierced, about 30 minutes (check after 20 minutes, you may need to add water or push the rice down into the liquid). Remove from heat; let stand, covered, for 10 minutes. Fluff rice with fork.



Serves 4.




Categories: Jewish Holiday, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe | Leave a comment

Roasted Butternut Squash, Jerusalem Artichoke and Kale…with Eggs (of course!)

A “from my garden” post in the middle of winter!!! Tonight’s dinner was a combination of my newly harvested Jerusalem artichokes and the last of my butternut squash with Farmer Kim’s eggs.

I harvested an amazing crop of Jerusalem artichokes Big, beautiful tubers that you will be seeing much of over the next few weeks.

One of the best ways to cook them is a simple roasting with olive oil, salt and pepper. So I used that for all the vegetables. I am always amazed at how many roasted vegetables we will eat. It is hard to resist the sweet flavor and crisp-soft texture that roasting brings out.

Comfort food…another happy meal.

RoastedButternut Squash, Jerusalem Artichokes, Kale and Eggs

½ Butternut squash (from the garden), peeled and chopped

½ – 3/4 lb Jerusalem artichokes (from the garden), scrubbed and chopped

1-2 Leeks, sliced ½” thick

2 1/2 Tbsp Olive oil, separated

Kosher salt & freshly ground pepper to taste

1 bunch Kale, stems removed and leaves torn

4-6 eggs, from Farmer Kim


Preheat the oven to 400F.

Toss the butternut squash, leeks and Jerusalem artichokes with 1 Tbsp oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet.

Roast for 45 minutes, stirring and turning the vegetables every 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, toss the kale with 1/2 Tbsp of oil, a little salt and pepper. Spread in a single layer on a second rimmed baking sheet.

Add the the oven for the final 15 minutes of roasting the root vegetables.

Mix all the cooked vegetables together.

Heat the final Tbsp of oil in a skillet over medium high heat.  Cook the eggs (in batches if necessary) either sunny-side up or over easy (until the yolks are just cooked, but still soft and runny).

To serve – place the vegetables on each plate and top with 1 or 2 eggs. Enjoy!

Serves 2 – 4.

Categories: Butternut Squash, Jerusalem Artichokes, Kale, Kosher, Leeks, Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | 1 Comment

Pickle Grilled Cheese

The food I remember loving the most in the whole wide world since as far back as I can remember is pickles.  Dill pickles, half sour pickles…all I can remember is my father yelling at me for eating all the pickles.  The best part of passover was the buckets of pickles my Uncle Heshey would bring us from the Pickle Lady on NY’s Lower East Side. Ah, pickles.

So, imagine my interest when I saw Daphne Oz’s Cheesy Pickle Sandwiches.

I made a whole wheat sourdough sandwich bread in the morning…

which turned out to hve a great texture for the sandwiches.

Aside from my own bread, there is nothing particularly local about this, but because it is pickles, I just had to share it.

Pickle Grilled Cheese

Very slightly adapted from Dahne Oz’s  Cheesy Pickle Sandwiches

For each sandwich:

2 slices substantial bread (sourdough, rye)

1 slice Muenster cheese

1 slice Sharp Cheddar Cheese

layer of bread & butter pickle chips

layer of dill pickle slices

1 Tbsp Thousand Island dressing

1 Tbsp butter


On one slice of bread, add 1 slice of Muenster cheese, 1 slice of cheddar cheese and 1 tablespoon of the Thousand Island dressing.

Top the other slice of bread with some bread and butter pickles and some dill pickles.

Place the first slice on top of the second slice of bread, dressing side down.

Place a large, nonstick sauté pan over medium heat and add butter. In the warm pan, add the sandwich and cook until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes. Flip and cook on the other side until golden brown and the cheese is melting, about 2 more minutes.

Remove to a plate, cut in half and enjoy!  

Categories: Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: , | 2 Comments

Parsnip Frittata

Frittatas are a great way to use the bits and pieces of vegetables left over from making other dishes.  I had parsnips sitting in my fridge, perfect to pair with Farmer Kim’s eggs in Mario Batali’s frittata recipe for la light, healthy dinner.


These parsnips did not come from my garden.  My parsnips did not grow, they were overshadowed by the Jerusalem artichokes (just harvest those, so more recipes will be coming soon). These were some hive parships though.


I am really looking forward to the leftover frittata for breakfast!

Parsnip Frittata

Very slightly adapted from Mario Batali

3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 medium parsnips (approximately 12 ounces), peeled and cut into matchstick julienne

8 large eggs (from Farmer Kim)

1/4 cup Pecorino Romano

1/4 cup Parmigiano Reggiano

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives or 1 scant Tbsp freeze dried chives

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Preheat the oven to 425ºF.

In a 12-inch ovenproof nonstick sauté pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat until smoking. Add the parsnips and cook until they are very soft and golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes.


Meanwhile, mix the eggs, cheese, and chives in a bowl, and season with salt and pepper.


Pour the egg mixture into the sauté pan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, pulling the sides in with a wooden spatula to distribute raw egg around the pan, until the center is curd-like but still wet.


Place the pan in the oven and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until just cooked through.


Invert the frittata onto a warmed serving platter, cut it into wedges, and serve.


Serves 4 as a main dish.


Categories: Kosher, Main Dish, Parsnips, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 4 Comments

Cincinnati Chili with Spaghetti Squash

Cincinnati chili…ahhhh. For someone who does not each much beef, I sure love Cincinnati chili. I wouldn’t dare try to substitute ground turkey or soy granules.  For Cincinnati Chili, it needs to be beef.


But, it does not have to be spaghetti.  Never thought I’d hear myself say that. Spaghetti squash made a totally satisfying, and healthier alternative. I like my chili to be 5-way – chili, spaghetti (squash), beans, onions, and cheese (To keep it kosher, omit the cheese).


What a treat!!

Cincinnati Chili with Spaghetti Squash

Slightly adapted from Food Network Magazine

1 medium spaghetti squash, locally grown

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 pound ground beef chuck, grass-fed if possible

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 28 -ounce can diced tomatoes

1 15 -ounce can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Oyster crackers and shredded cheddar cheese, for topping
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Halve and seed the spaghetti squash, place cut-side down on a cookie sheet. Roast for 30 minutes, let cool slightly, then scrape into strands.

Meanwhile, put half of the onion in a small bowl and cover with cold water; set aside.


Heat the vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the remaining onion and the garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Add the beef, tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, oregano, cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the beef is browned, about 7 minutes.


Add the tomatoes and 1 1/2 cups water to the beef mixture. Increase the heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the chili is slightly thickened, about 20 minutes; season with salt and black pepper.


Drain the reserved onion; pat dry. Top each serving of chili with the spaghetti squash, kidney beans, onion, oyster crackers and cheese. Enjoy!


Serves 4.

Categories: Main Dish, Recipe, Spaghetti Squash | Leave a comment

Challah Project #16 – Rye Challah

I will be honest, I did not expect much from this challah.  I figured it would be ok, perhaps interesting, but I never expected it to be a wonderful challah with a great chewy yet light texture.  Nor that it would be an equally good rye bread!


Look at that texture!


It was really good for Shabbat dinner with barley mushroom soup, and even better the next day with turkey pastrami sandwiches!

Only drawback – not so great for french toast.  But, fantastic with sunny side up or fried eggs!

Rye Challah

adapted from Molly Yeh

2 1/4 teaspoons (or 1 packet) dry active yeast
3/4 cup warm water
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 cup rye flour*
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons caraway seeds
3 large eggs
1/3 cup canola or vegetable oil
3 tablespoons honey


Pour warm water into a bowl with 1 teaspoon of sugar and sprinkle the yeast on top. Let it sit and proof for 5 minutes, until it becomes foamy.

While the yeast mixture is proofing, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar, both flours, the salt, and the caraway seeds in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Give the mixture a quick stir so everything is combined.

In a separate medium bowl, whisk together 2 of the eggs, the oil, and 2 tablespoons of honey.

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients and the yeast mixture. Stir with paddle attachment until just combined and then let the mixture sit for 20 minutes on the counter, uncovered.

Switch to a dough hook and knead for 7-10 minutes. I like the dough to be a little sticky still, but you can add more flour if you want a smoother dough.


Transfer to a large oiled bowl, cover with a plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight or for up to 24 hours. The dough should at least double in size.

Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let sit out for a few minutes. Preheat oven to 375.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface, divide into 3 equal logs, and braid them, tucking the ends under. Place the loaf on a baking sheet that is lined with parchment paper. Cover with a damp towel and let rise for 30 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining egg and tablespoon of water. Brush it evenly over the loaf.


Bake for 30-35 minutes, until browned and cooked through. You can test if it’s done by thumping the bottom of the loaf and listening for a hollow sound. Let cool on a wire rack.  Enjoy!


Makes 1 loaf.


Categories: Bread, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 1 Comment

Red Lentil and Swiss Chard Soup

I am in a soup mood.  It has been a few years since I have been in a soup mood. What does it mean to be in a soup mood?  Soups, and lots of them. My family must brace for many dinners of soups and stews.


First up for the blog… Yotam Ottolenghi’s Red Lentil and Chard Soup. Served with a whole grain sourdough bread I made. This one was one of my favorites so far, and one that I put the most “me” into rather than simply following the recipe.


But back to the soup.  I really like this one.  I am usually not a big fan of red lentils, but they work very well with the chard, creating a nice contrast of textures.


Red Lentil and Swiss Chard Soup

very slightly adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Red Lentil and Chard Soup

1 lb split red lentils

2.75 quarts cold water

2 medium red onions

2 tbsp olive oil

1/2 lb Swiss chard

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 Tbsp coriander seeds

3 garlic cloves, crushed

2 Tbsp unsalted butter

Grated zest of ½ lemon

Sourdough bread

3 lemons, cut into wedges

Salt and black pepper


Wash the lentils in plenty of cold water. Place in a large saucepan with the water, bring to a boil and simmer for 35 minutes or until soft (mine was soft in 20 minutes). Skim off any foam that rises to the surface during cooking.  Using a slotted spoon, remove about half the lentils from the cooking liquid and set aside in a bowl.


Add a generous pinch of salt to the lentils and water in the pan and liquidise using a stick blender or in a food processor. Return the reserved lentils to the soup.
While the lentils are cooking, peel the red onions, halve and thinly slice them. Place a frying pan over a medium heat, add the olive oil and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4–5 minutes, until the onions soften and become translucent.


Meanwhile, remove and discard the large stems from the Swiss chard. Wash and rinse the leaves thoroughly, then chop them roughly.

Mix the cooked onions and chard leaves into the lentil soup and season with the cumin, cinnamon and some salt and pepper to taste. Reheat the soup and simmer gently for 5 minutes.

In a pestle and mortar, or using the heel of a large knife, crush the coriander seeds and garlic together.


Melt the butter gently in a small saucepan over a medium heat, add the garlic and coriander seeds and fry for 2 minutes, until the garlic starts to color slightly (I used the pan from frying the onions, it worked well). Stir this into the soup, remove the pot from the stove and cover with a lid. Leave the soup to infuse for 5 minutes before serving.


Serve garnished with lemon zest and pass round some sourdough bread and lemon wedges. Squeeze the lemon into their soup – it adds tremendous flavor. Enjoy!


Serves 6

Categories: Kosher, Recipe, Soup, Swiss Chard, Vegetarian | Tags: | Leave a comment

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