Butternut Squash and Kale Bake with Eggs

Butternut squash and kale – they really do appear to be a great combination. Not only are their tastes complimentary, their colors look great together – vivid orange and deep green. This was greatly exemplified in the butternut squash and kale pesto I posted on the 20th.


The colors are just as beautiful in this dish…

It all starts with a butternut squash from my garden.

And ends with an egg from Powers Farm.

This was a big hit. And such a colorful plate was a fitting end to a day that started with the Color My College 5K at Delaware State University (Cam and Emily joined me for the run).

Butternut Squash and Kale Bake with Eggs

adapted from Tori Avey’s Butternut Squash & Crisp Kale Bake

1 large bunch curly kale (lighter green kale), de-stemmed and torn into bite-sized pieces

5 – 6 cups cubed butternut squash (peeled and seeded), about 2 lbs of peeled cubes (from the garden)

2 tbsp olive oil, divided, plus more for greasing the baking sheet

1 tbsp maple syrup (grade B preferred)

1/2 tsp salt, divided, or more to taste

1/4 tsp cinnamon

Pinch cayenne 

1 Tbsp olive oil

4 eggs

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

In a large mixing bowl, toss the butternut squash cubes with 1 tbsp of olive oil and the maple syrup, 1/4 tsp salt, cinnamon and cayenne. Mix until evenly coated.

Grease your baking sheet with olive oil. Transfer the squash to the baking sheet and roast at 425 degrees F for 30 minutes, or until tender and nicely caramelized. Stir the squash halfway through.

While the squash is roasting, massage the kale pieces with the remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil and 1/4 tsp of salt. Give them a good massage for a couple of minutes to start them wilting, it will help to sweeten their flavor.

Remove the squash from the oven. It should be nicely browned.

Turn the oven to broil. Evenly spread the prepared kale over the top of the squash.

Return the tray to the oven on the highest rack and broil for 1-2 minutes or until the kale wilts and the edges start to get crisp and brown. If necessary, turn the sheet around once during broiling to ensure even heat distribution. Let them get quite browned, it gives more flavor to the dish and gives them a great texture, so don’t be afraid to let them get a bit “overdone.” (Thanks Tori for that tip)

While the kale is broiling, in a large pan, fry the eggs in 1 Tbsp olive oil.

When finished, serve the squash and kale on topped with an egg, season to taste.  Enjoy!

Serves 4.



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Date Glazed Orange Chicken

I want to share a recipe I used for one of our Rosh Hashanah dinners. It has wonderful flavors, but was simple to make so it could be made for any dinner where you want to enjoy the flavors of dates and oranges.   It does take a little prep ahead of time.  The first thing you need to make is date honey syrup.  I am providing the link because other than a picture of my dates, there is not much to share in making this and Tori Avey does a very good job in her post.

Dates are decidedly NOT local in Delaware, but I do try to bring home a large supply of dates when I travel to the Middle East or California.  We typically have a suitcase that is half-filled with dates and nuts – it is rather amusing.

The chicken needs to marinate overnight (or at least for three hours). So plan on prep time the day before. But day of is very simple.  You line your pan with orange slices and fresh thyme…

Add the chicken and roast it, basting every 15 minutes for a total of about 50 minutes.

Add some rice and a salad and, voila!, you have a dinner!

Date Glazed Orange Chicken

from Tori Avey

6 large chicken pieces, bone in, skin on (I prefer leg/thigh quarters)

1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1/4 cup hot sauce

1/2 cup + 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

3 tbsp mustard (Dijon or yellow)

2 tsp orange zest

Salt and black pepper

Large bunch fresh thyme, divided (from the garden)

3 large navel oranges, divided

2/3 cup date honey syrup – click here for recipe


Whisk together orange juice, hot sauce, olive oil, mustard, orange zest, 1/2 tsp salt and pinch of black pepper to form a marinade. Place chicken pieces into a plastic zipper bag or into a ceramic or glass dish. Pour marinade over the chicken and add 6-8 sprigs of thyme. Seal the bag (if using) or cover the dish with plastic wrap. Marinate in the refrigerator at least 3 hours, up to overnight.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. Remove chicken from marinade and discard the excess marinade. Heat 1/2 cup olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium until hot but not smoking. Add the chicken pieces skin side down, three pieces at a time, and let them cook for 5-10 minutes until the skin is nicely browned. Remove from skillet and repeat with remaining 3 pieces. Remove the skillet from heat.

Lightly grease a roasting pan or dish. Slice two of the large navel oranges into rounds and lay them on a single layer, covering the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle some thyme sprigs into the bottom of the roasting pan as well.

Place the chicken back into the pan, skin side up. Brush each piece generously with date honey.

Cover the pan tightly with foil and bake 45 minutes, basting the chicken every 15 minutes with more date honey.

After 45 minutes the chicken should be cooked through and internal temperature should be at least 165 degrees F (I usually cook it to 170). If not, re-cover and continue to cook until it reaches temperature.

Uncover the chicken. Baste once more with remaining date honey. increase heat to 500 degrees F and cook for 5-10 more minutes until the date glaze is bubbly and shiny. Keep a close eye to make sure the glaze doesn’t burn, it contains a lot of natural sugar and will blacken if you’re not careful.

Slice up the remaining orange. Serve each piece of chicken garnished with a fresh orange slice. Enjoy!

Serves 6.

Categories: Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur | Tags: | 1 Comment

The Challah Project #12 – Savory Tomato Stuffed Challah

I am starting to write this while the challah is still in the oven.  Not something I typically do, but this has seemed like such a fiasco, I want to capture it all, in case the challah actually comes out well.

First, I probably was on the low side for flour, it was an incredibly sticky dough.  But it worked fine on a well floured board. However, the recipe said it was for 2 challahs (or challot), so I divided the dough in half. But when I then made the three strands from each, they were too thin for holding the filling, it was falling apart. My solution was to keep my first strand as thin as it was, then use the rest of the dough, from both halves, to make 1 larger challah. That worked much better.

I initially used the extra strand as decoration.

Then came trying to transfer the braid to the baking sheet. Oy vey! Holes were appearing, dough was tearing. Wheel shaped challah to the rescue. I tried different things with the single strand, all looked terrible. So I just wound it into its own mini challah roll.

I then had to fiddle with the cooking time because my challah was much bigger and I needed it to cook through. Oh, and I was so flustered, I forgot to do the egg wash.  Luckily you change the oven temperature part-way through, do I did a late egg wash then.  They are now on the table cooling. I’ll finish writing after we try them.

I can’t believe it – really, really good! Maybe I didn’t screw up so much after all.


Savory Tomato Stuffed Challah

adapted from the Little Ferraro Kitchen


4 cups all purpose flour + more for kneading, sifted

1 cup lukewarm water

1 packet yeast (1/4oz)

1 Tb sugar

2 Tb honey

2 tsp kosher salt

1/4 cup vegetable

2 eggs + 1 yolk (save white for egg wash) (locally raised)

Coarse sea salt + freshly chopped herbs (for garnishing challah)

Roasted Tomato Filling

1 pint cherry tomatoes

4-5 garlic cloves, peel removed (from the garden)

Olive oil, for drizzling

Salt and pepper, to taste

1/2 cup feta, crumbled

Fresh herbs (basil, rosemary, oregano, etc), chopped finely (I used oregano from the garden)

Sun-dried Tomato Filling

1 cup feta, crumbled,

1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped

Fresh herbs (basil, rosemary, oregano, etc), chopped finely (I used oregano from the garden)


Challah Filling

In a baking dish, toss together the cherry tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper and herbs until well coasted. Roast at 400 degrees F for about 15 minutes until tomatoes begin to blister and garlic is soft. Allow to cool and add crumbled feta and fresh herbs.

For the sun-dried tomato challah, just mix those ingredients together. Taste for seasoning.


In the bowl of a standing mixer, add 1 cup warm water, yeast and sugar. Mix lightly with a fork to get all the yeast in the water and set aside for about 15 minutes. It should begin to foam up and you should see little bubbles.

Next, add eggs, oil and honey and whisk together.

Using a dough attachment on your mixer, gradually add flour and salt, about 1/2 cup at a time with the mixer on low. Continue to mix until everything is incorporated. The dough should begin to pull away from the bowl and come to 1 large ball of dough. Continue to mix at low speed for 8 – 10 minutes.

Oil a large bowl and place your dough ball in the bowl. Turn it around so the entire dough is covered with a thin layer of oil. Cover with a clean towel and place bowl in a warm spot and let rise for 1 1/2hours until doubled in size.

Punch the dough down and knead a bit to soften. Divide dough into 3 pieces, this will be your braid strands. Take 1 of the strands and roll making a long snake, about 15 inches long, but it should be thick enough to stuff, about 1-2 inches thick. Use a rolling pin to flatten the strand.

Next use a teaspoon to fill the strand. Don’t overfill, leaving the ends along. Bring the strand together, pinching with your fingers and making sure no filling peeks out (but it’s ok it some does).

Once strands are sealed, gently roll the strands and braid a 3-strand bread and pinch the bottom end together.

Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper and cover with a towel. (This is when mine turned into a wreath shape). Allow to rise for another 30 minutes.

Brush challah with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sea salt and freshly chopped herbs.

Bake at 375 degrees F for 35 minutes then bring the temperature down to 350 degrees F for 15 – 20 minutes until cooked through.

Cool on a wire rack and enjoy!

Makes 1 loaf.

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

Cousin Bentzi’s Noodle Kugel

How many ways can you say “yum!”? I think this may be my favorite noodle kugel recipe ever.

I guess is should give you some context. My cousin Bentzi lives in Israel and we have never met. But we have bonded over our mutual love of cooking and feeding people.

He sent me his recipe for noodle kugel, which was translated from Hebrew. As I was about to make it, I realized that I did not understand some of the translation, so I have probably tweaked his recipe a bit.  I guess this is my version of Bentzi’s noodle kugel.

It was a hit even with family members who do not usually like noodle kugel.


Cousin Bentzi’s Noodle Kugel

1 lb package of wide egg noodles

1 stick butter, softened and cut into small cubes

3 eggs, beaten (locally raised)

4 – 5 Tbsp apricot preserves (or plum or peach)

1/2 Tbsp cocoa

2 – 3 Tbsp flour

1 cup walnuts, chopped

1 apple, peeled and grated (locally grown)

1 cup raisins, prunes and dried apricots, coarsely cubed (I also used dried pears)

3/4 cup sugar

1/8 – 1/4 cup cinnamon-sugar for sprinkling on top 


Preheat the oven to 350F.  Line a baking dish with parchment paper (you can use either a 9×13 pan or loaf pans)

Cook the noodles according to package directions (til al dente). Drain and place in a large bowl with the butter (you can also toss them with a little oil first, I didn’t and the noodles did not stick together).

Add all the other ingredients except the cinnamon sugar. Mix well.

Transfer to the baking dish. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.

Bake until a deep golden brown, 30 – 35 minutes.

Serve warm or at room temperature and enjoy!

Categories: Apples, Kosher, Pasta, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Fresh Lima Bean Gratin

I was not able to get lima beans planted this year and I have been really missing having had a lima bean harvest.  So, when Cam and I went to the farm store, we both jumped on the bushels of lima beans.  Now that I have so many beans in my refrigerator, I need to shell them and figure out new ways to use them (although I am always tempted to do my never say never again’ lima beans, we all love it).

I made a dent in the beans today with this gratin.  It needed 4 cups of shelled beans.

The recipe called for making it in individual ramekins, which I do not have, so I made it as one large casserole.

It was very tasty and, combined with a salad, made a very satisfying dinner.

On a funny note, I decided to try another new (or so I thought) recipe as a side dish for Rosh Hashanah – Tok Cel Lima Beans.  As I was making them I realized that they seemed really familiar…very familiar.  So, before I wrote a new post I did a search.  I made the exact recipe last summer – Roasted Lima Beans!  Well, they were every bit as good this time!

Fresh Lima Bean Gratin

adapted from Grace Parisi in Food & Wine Magazine

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon melted

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 pound shallots, halved if small, quartered if large

8 thyme sprigs (from the garden)

Salt and freshly ground pepper

4 cups shelled lima beans (1 1/4 pounds) (locally grown)

1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 cups half-and-half

1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved (locally grown)

1/2 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)

1 tablespoon chopped flat leaf parsley (from the garden)


Preheat the oven to 425°. In an ovenproof dutch oven, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter in the oil. Add the shallots and thyme, season with salt and pepper and cook over high heat for 1 minute. Cover tightly and roast for about 30 minutes, until very tender.

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan of salted water, cook the limas until just tender, 5 minutes. Drain and cool under running water. Spread on paper towels and pat dry.

Transfer the shallots and thyme to a plate; leave as much fat in the pan as possible. Strip the thyme leaves from the sprigs and return to the shallots.

Lower the oven to 375°. Add the flour to the skillet and cook over moderately high heat, whisking, for 1 minute. Add the half-and-half and simmer until thickened, 5 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the limas, shallots, thyme and tomatoes; season with salt and pepper. 

In a bowl, toss the panko and parsley with the 1 tablespoon of melted butter; sprinkle over the gratins.

Bake for 30 minutes, until bubbling. Turn on the broiler and broil for 2 minutes, just until browned.Let the gratins rest for 10 minutes before serving. Serve and enjoy!

Serves 4 – 6


Categories: Kosher, Lima Beans, Main Dish, Recipe, Tomatoes, Vegetarian | Tags: | Leave a comment

Kale Salad

Something has been eating the fall plants in my garden. Although the plants are atill small, the other day I harvested as much kale and Swiss chard as I could. I washed them, placed them in a single layer on paper towels, rolled them up, placed them in a plastic bag in the fridge.

That was almost a week ago.  Tonight I used the kale in a salad, and the texture and freshness of the kale was perfect.

I made a champagne vinaigrette, inspired by a sherry vinaigrette I found in the Edible Pioneer Valley magazine. It went perfectly with the kale. A definite keeper in my salad dressing arsenal.

Kale Salad

4 cups kale, stems removed and leaves torn into bite-sized pieces (from the garden)

1/4 cup dried cherries

1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Champagne Vinaigrette

2 Tbsp champagne vinegar

1/2 Tbsp lemon juice

3/4 tsp soy sauce

3/4 tsp Dijon mustard

3/4 tsp Kosher salt

1/2 Tbsp fresh Thyme leaves (from the garden)

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 shallot, minced


Make the dressing – in a blender, puree the vinegar, lemon juice, soy sauce, mustard, salt and thyme leaves.  With the blender running, add the olive oil. Pour into a covered jar and add the shallots, shake well.

Make the salad – Toss the kale, dried cherries and parmesan in a bowl.

Toss with some of the dressing.  If it seems too dry, add more dressing.

Serve and enjoy! We had ours with salmon cakes from Tori Avey.

Serves 2 – 4.

Categories: Kale, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Pasta with Kale Pesto and Roasted Butternut Squash

Time to use the first of the butternut squash from my garden.  

It was “parents night out”, with Cam spending the evening at Tae Kwan Do. So, our version of night out – a good dinner, a walk with the dog, and a movie rental.  We finally watched The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel – what a treat!

But I digress; our dinner was so pretty and colorful.  And equally tasty.  This was a another great recipe from Melissa Clark. I have really been enjoying trying her recipes.

Pasta with Kale Pesto and Roasted Butternut Squash

By Melissa Clark

1 ½ pounds butternut squash (from the garden)½ cup extra virgin olive oil, more for drizzling

¾ teaspoon kosher salt, more for squash

Freshly ground black pepper

1 small bunch (about 1/2 pound)lacinato kale, center ribs removed

8 ounces pasta (penne rigate works well)

cup toasted pine nuts

2 large garlic cloves, roughly chopped (from the garden)

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon

Freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste

Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Use a vegetable peeler to peel squash, then halve it lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Dice squash flesh into 1-inch pieces, place on a baking sheet, and toss with olive oil and season generously with salt and pepper. Spread pieces into an even layer, making sure there is space between them.Roast, stirring squash pieces once or twice, until golden brown and tender, about 30 minutes.Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; have ready a bowl of ice water. Drop kale into boiling water and cook for 45 seconds. Use tongs or slotted spoon to transfer kale to ice water.Bring water in pot back to a boil, adding more if necessary so there is enough to cook pasta. When water in pot comes back to a boil, cook pasta according to package directions.

Drain kale well, then wrap tightly in a dry kitchen towel and squeeze thoroughly to remove any excess moisture. Roughly chop leaves.

In a food processor, pulse together kale, nuts, garlic, salt and lemon zest until mixture is smooth and salt has dissolved. With motor running, slowly drizzle in the oil until fully incorporated. Taste and add more salt dissolved in a little lemon juice, if necessary.

Drain pasta, reserving a little cooking water. Toss pasta with kale pesto and some pasta cooking water if necessary to help it coat pasta. Add cheese, lemon juice and salt to taste.Serve topped with squash and more cheese and Enjoy!

Serves 3.


Categories: Butternut Squash, Kale, Kosher, Main Dish, Pasta, Pesto, Recipe, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Zucchini Tian with Curried Bread Crumbs

This was going to be my last dish with the zucchini from my garden, so I wanted it to be a good one.  This recipe intrigued me – curry AND rosemary – I wanted to make it, but I wasn’t positive that it was going to actually taste good.

Well, it lived up to the hopes for my farewell zucchini dish, it was full of deep, rich flavor, with a great texture contrast from the breadcrumbs and onion-tomato mixture.

I served it with rice, we ended up mixing it all together, yum!!  Definitely worth a try. But be prepared for a house smelling of curry…makes you want to eat more!

Zucchini Tian with Curried Bread Crumbs

By Melissa Clark

1 tablespoon curry powder7 ½ tablespoons olive oil1 ¼ cups whole-wheat or regularpanko bread crumbs2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt1 large white onion, halved and thinly sliced

2 teaspoons finely chopped rosemary

1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

¼ cup dry white wine

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon orange zest

½ teaspoon black pepper, more to taste

4 medium zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds), thinly sliced (about 7 cups)


Heat oven to 400 degrees. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, then add curry powder and let toast until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil, then stir in panko bread crumbs and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer to a bowl and wipe out skillet.
In the same skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over high heat, then add onions, rosemary and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often, until onions are a deep golden brown.Add tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes. Pour white wine into pan and bring to a simmer, scraping up any brown bits. Remove from heat and stir in garlic, orange zest and black pepper.Grease inside of a medium-size gratin dish with 1/2 tablespoon olive oil and spread a third of the onion and tomato mixture on the bottom. Begin layering zucchini in an overlapping pattern, beginning around the outside and working your way in.Sprinkle with a third of the bread crumbs. Repeat layering two more times, ending with bread crumbs.Drizzle 3 tablespoons olive oil over bread crumbs and bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until vegetables are extremely tender and top has browned.Serve with rice and Enjoy!

Serves 4 – 6.
Categories: Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Tomatoes, Vegetarian, Zucchini | Leave a comment

Challah Project # 11 – Raisin Honey Challah

After making what we decided was the perfect challah for Rosh Hashanah (Brown Sugar Challah with Pomegranate Glaze) about 3 weeks before Rosh Hashanah, I couldn’t make it again for the actual holiday, it was too soon for a repeat. So, I decided to try an experiment for our ‘real-time’ holiday challot.

I had plenty of high-gluten flour in my pantry that needed to be used.  I had bought it by mistake and have been trying to figure out what I should use it for. I found some recipes for challah that used high-gluten flour, so I decided to try it in this relatively simple raisin challah and see how the texture would be.  It was beautiful!  Such a a great challah!

And absolutely delicious when paired with the honey I brought back from my trip to Norway!

A great way to start our new year, Shana Tova to all!


Raisin Honey Challah

Adapted from Miriam Szokovski‘s Round Raisin Challah with Sweet Crumb Topping


2 Tbsp dry yeast

2 1/2 cups very warm water

3 large eggs, beaten, with a little (about 1/2 egg-worth) removed (locally raised)

5 Tbsp honey

1/2 cup canola oil

1 Tbsp salt

1/2 cup raisins

8 – 9 cups flour (I used high gluten flour)

Egg wash

1 egg (locally raised)

Crumb topping

1/4 cup flour

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 tsp. vanilla

2 1/2 Tbsp canola oil


In a very large bowl, dissolve yeast in 1 cup warm water and let sit about 15–20 minutes until slightly frothy.

Add the rest of the ingredients and half the flour. Mix until a loose batter forms. Add the rest of the flour a couple of cups at a time, until the dough is soft but not sticky. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator overnight (or a warm place to rise for about 1½ hours). Dough should double in size.

Punch the dough down and let it rest for 10 minutes. Divide into 2. Roll each half out into a long rope.  Form into a round spiral loaf or braid and then form into a round loaf.

Place loaves on a parchment sheet-lined cookie sheets and let rise for another 40 minutes.

Make the sweet crumb topping by putting the flour and sugar into a bowl. Slowly add the vanilla and oil, mixing with a spoon, or your fingertips until you it reaches crumb consistency.

Egg wash the loaves and sprinkle with crumb topping.

Bake at 375° F for approximately 45 minutes. Loaves should be golden brown and firm on the bottom. Enjoy!

Makes 2 round loaves.

Categories: Bread, Kosher, Recipe, Rosh Hashanah/Yom Kippur, Vegetarian | Tags: | Leave a comment

Corn Salad with Feta and Walnuts

I had more of the Freeman’s corn, so I decided to try a corn salad with dinner tonight.  How could it not be good with toasted walnuts, feta and jalapeños? Well, it wasn’t good, it was great!  So much flavor and texture!


And it was a good thing the corn salad was so good, because my main dish, bindi masala, was a total fail.  The flavor was ok, but too many of the okra were just too tough.  no amount of cooking broke them down.  Oh well, at least the corn was great!

Corn Salad with Feta and Walnuts

from Real Simple magazine

1 cup walnuts
4 cups fresh corn kernels (from 4 ears), raw or cooked (from Freeman Farm)
2 jalapeños, seeded and thinly sliced (from the garden)
2 Tbsp fresh lime juice
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
 kosher salt and black pepper
1/2 cup crumbled Feta (2 ounces)

Heat oven to 400° F. Spread the walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet and toast until fragrant, 6 to 8 minutes. Let cool and roughly chop.


In a large bowl, combine the corn, jalapeños,


Toss with lime juice, oil, walnuts, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Sprinkle with the Feta before serving. Enjoy!


Serves 6.


Categories: Kosher, Recipe | Tags: | Leave a comment

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