Monthly Archives: October 2015

Pasta with Cauliflower & Sun-dried Tomatoes

Look at this cauliflower, it is beautiful! And it is huge, the size of two typical cauliflowers. This picture was taken after I had already broken off a bunch of florets to munch on. And, of course, it was locally grown and purchased at one  of my favorite road-side stands.


How to do such a beautiful cauliflower justice?  First, divide it in half. The first half was destined for my favorite cooking method, pan-searing.


As I have posted previously, pan-seared cauliflower goes very well with pasta. This time, I decided to add sun-dried tomatoes to the mix.


It was a good addition!



Pasta with Cauliflower & Sun-dried Tomatoes

1 lb pasta

3 tbs olive oil

1 medium cauliflower (or half of one huge locally-grown one)

6-8 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, chopped (from the garden)

Red pepper flakes – optional

Kosher salt

Parmigiano reggiano, grated


Slice the cauliflower about 1/2 inch thick and break into “florets”.IMG_1755

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add pasta and cook according to package directions. Drain and set aside.


Meanwhile, heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet (I prefer cast iron) over medium-high heat. Add the cauliflower in a single layer, you will need to do this in several batches.


Cook until well browned, then flip to cook the other side til browned. It will take between 2 and 4 minutes per side. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate and salt lightly.


Add the sun-dried tomatoes to the cauliflower.


Re-heat the pan over medium heat and mix together the pasta and cauliflower-tomatoes.  Add red pepper flakes if using and season to taste.


Serve with freshly grated Parmigiano reggiano, enjoy!


Serves 4.

Categories: Cauliflower, Kosher, Main Dish, Pasta, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 1 Comment

Eggplant and Butternut Squash Tagine with Chickpeas and Raisins

We attended the Delaware Wine and Beer Festival last week and, aside from some new beverages, we discovered a new farm – Suzuki Farms in Delmar, Delaware.  They specialize in Japanese vegetables.

We picked up some eggplants and some delicious salad dressing that his wife made. I used a could of the eggplants with a butternut squash from my garden  in  a moroccan stew (tagine).It is called a tagine because of the traditional dish is it cooked in. I happen to have a tagine, but it can calso be made in a dutch oven or other covered pot. I do love my tagine, but have still have to learn how much to cut back the liquid, I tend to have overflows every time I use it.  Oh well, some day I will figure it out. Why do I ove it, the stews stay incredibly moist and tender.


To add some texture, and additional flavor, to the stew, you make a mix for parsley, almonds and raisins.

Put it all together and serve it on top of couscous.  A tasty treat for an autumn evening.

Eggplant and Butternut Squash Tagine with Chickpeas and Raisins

From Williams -Sonoma

1 1/2 lb. butternut squash (from the garden)

1 lb. slender eggplant (locally grown)

1 1/2 Tbs. olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

2 Tbs. ras el hanout  (see recipe below)

1/2 tsp. ground turmeric

1/2 tsp. salt, plus more, to taste

1 can (14 1/2 oz.) chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 1/2 cups vegetable broth

1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice and 1/8 tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley  (from the garden)

1/2 cup sliced almonds (I only had slovered), toasted

1/4 cup raisins or currants


Peel and halve the butternut squash, scoop out the seeds and cut the flesh into 1-inch chunks.

Trim the eggplant and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks.

In a large pot over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the ras el hanout, turmeric and the 1/2 tsp. salt and cook for 1 minute.

Add the squash, eggplant, chickpeas, broth and lemon with salt and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, cover and cook until the squash and eggplant are tender, about 20 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl, stir together the parsley, almonds and raisins.

Stir two-thirds of the parsley mixture into the tagine,

then sprinkle the remaining mixture on top. Serve immediately with couscous. Enjoy!

Serves 4.


Ras El Hanout

from Gourmet April 1998

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seeds

1/2 teaspoon cayenne

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves


In a small bowl whisk together all ingredients until combined well. Spice blend keeps in an airtight container at cool room temperature 1 month.


Categories: Butternut Squash, Eggplant, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Chard and Sweet Corn Tacos

We had our first frost last night.  So the two ears of Filasky’s corn that were in my fridge were probably my last local corn of the year. I paired them with some swiss chard from my garden in Martha Rose Shulman’s tacos.

It is a sad time of year in my garden; things are winding down. I picked the green tomatoes last week, the cauliflower plants are struggling to produce tiny little heads after being eaten by the groundhog, and the green beans are slowly producing a few beans a day. The Jerusalem artichokes are just starting to die back – the first step towards my being able to harvest this winter. But as I look at the garden, there they are, the swiss chard and the kale – my hardy  greens.And I can usually count on Ms. Shulman to give me a dish worthy of them.  The vegetable mix was so tasty, surprisingly so since the only ingredients were kale, corn, onions, garlic and salt.

We did decide, however, that next time we will either use the mix in a quesadilla or make it as a topping for a tostada. And there definitely will be a next time 🙂

Chard and Sweet Corn Tacos

Martha Rose Shulman

1 generous bunch Swiss chard(about 3/4 pound) (from the garden)

Salt to taste

1 medium white, red or yellowonion, sliced

3 large garlic cloves, minced

Kernels from 2 ears sweet corn (from Filasky’s Produce)

Freshly ground pepper

8 warm corn tortillas

½ cup crumbled feta 

Salsa of your choice


Bring a large pot of water to a boil while you stem chard and wash leaves in 2 rinses of water. Rinse stalks and dice them if they are wide and not stringy.

When water in pot comes to a boil, salt generously and add chard leaves. Blanch for a minute, then transfer to a bowl of cold water and drain.

Take chard up by the handful and squeeze out excess water, then cut into 1/2-inch wide strips. Set aside.

Heat oil over medium heat in a large, heavy skillet and add onion. Cook, stirring often, until onions are tender and beginning to color, about 8 minutes.

Add a generous pinch of salt, the garlic, diced chard stalks and corn kernels. Continue to cook, stirring often, until corn is just tender, about 4 minutes.

Stir in chard and cook, stirring, for another minute or two, until ingredients are combined nicely and chard is tender but still bright. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove from heat.

Heat tortillas. Top with vegetables, a sprinkling of cheese and a spoonful of salsa. Enjoy!

Serves 4

Categories: Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Swiss Chard, Vegetarian | Tags: | 1 Comment

Cabbage, Kale & Carrot Latkes

A latke recipe? in October? Really?


Who says  latkes are only for Hanukkah? Not me.  Pan-fried patties made of vegetables are good any day, especially when the combination of the vegetables results in such a pretty color palette.


As I have mentioned, the kale in my garden has escaped the jaws of the groundhog.  Looking pretty, isn’t it?


These latkes are really good. We dove into them so quickly, I actually have no photos of the final plated latkes.

You can eat them with sour cream or other toppings, we had ours with Green Bean Polou (Persian Rice Pilaf), they went very well together. The flavors perfectly when combined in the same bite. I really wish I had a picture for you, but…next time.

Cabbage, Kale & Carrot Latkes
Slightly adapted from Martha Rose Shulman’s Cabbage, Kale & Purple Kale Latkes
5 cups finely shredded cabbage (locally grown)
2 cups finely chopped kale (not Tuscan Kale) (from the garden)
1 1/2 cups carrots, peeled and grated 

1 teaspoon baking powder

Salt to taste

2 teaspoons cumin seeds, lightly toasted and coarsely ground or crushed

3 tablespoons oat bran

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons cornmeal

2 tablespoons buckwheat flour

3 eggs, beaten

About 1/4 cup canola oil


Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment. Place a rack over another sheet pan.In a large bowl mix together the cabbage, kale, baking powder, salt, cumin, oat bran, flour, cornmeal and buckwheat flour. Taste and adjust salt.
Add the eggs and mix together. Let the mixture sit for 5 – 10 minutes, then mix again.IMG_1640

Heat a large heavy skillet (cast iron works well) over medium heat. Take a 1/4 cup measuring cup and fill about 3/4 full with the mixture. Reverse onto the parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining latke mix. You should have enough to make about 15 latkes.


Add the oil to the pan and when it is hot, transfer a few latkes (probably 4 or 5 will fit) to the pan. Press down with the spatula to flatten. In my 10-inch pan I can cook four at a time without crowding; my 12-inch pan will accommodate four or five. Cook on one side until golden brown, about three to four minutes. Slide the spatula underneath and flip the latkes over. Cook on the other side until golden brown, another three minutes.


Transfer to the rack set over a baking sheet and place in the oven to keep warm.


Serve and enjoy!

Serves 5 – 6.

Categories: Carrot, Hanukah, Kale, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 2 Comments

Pasta with Edamame

Pasta, edamame, lemon and parmesan. So simple, yet tasty and quite satisfying. What more is there to say?Except…look at my beautiful edamame harvest! 

Pasta with Edamame

Slightly adapted from French Women Don’t Get Fat (Farfalle with Edamame)

1 lb farfalle or other pasta

Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper

1 lb shelled edamame (from the garden or frozen)

Zest & juice of 1 lemon

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 cup grated parmesan


Cook the pasta in salted water according to package directions.  In the last 5 minutes of cooking time, add the edamame. Reserve 1/3 of the pasta water and drain.Place the lemon zest and juice in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the reserved pasta water, oil and 1/2 cup of the cheese. Mix well.Add the edamame and farfalle to the lemon mixture, and toss well to coat.
Serve immediately, sprinkled with remaining cheese.  Season with pepper to taste. Serves 6.

Categories: Edamame, Kosher, Main Dish, Pasta, Recipe, Vegetarian | Leave a comment

Challah Project #13 – Challah de Calabaza (Pumpkin Challah)

Nothing says Autumn like pumpkin. And I happen to have some extra pumpkin purée in my fridge.  How better to use it than in a pumpkin challah!


I should share why I had  pumpkin purée  hanging around. Earlier in the week, Cam and I made pumpkin cupcakes…pumpkin skeleton cupcakes.

They were our adorable skeleton army.


But, back to the challah…As part of my Challah Challenge, I bought the book “A Blessing of Bread” by Maggie Glezer. What a cool book! 18 different Challahs plus dozens of other traditional Jewish breads from around the world. This fantastic recipe happens to be Pan de Calabaza (a Sephardic Pumpkin Bread). In addition to the bread recipes, she includes instructions for a great number of different braids and shapes for the challah.  This time I tried both the low and high versions of a 4-strand loaf.


We decided we liked the low version best – the one on the bottom of the picture.

Challah de Calabaza

very slightly adapted from A Blessing of Bread by Maggie Glezer

1/2 cup pumpkin puree, fresh or canned
2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
1/2-3/4 ground cinnamon, or to your taste
few grates fresh nutmeg (this stuff is strong!)
about 3 3/4 cups bread flour (I used 1/2 all-purpose flour and 1/2 high-gluten flour)
2/3 cup warm water
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 large egg, plus one for glazing (from Highland Orchards)
Sesame seed for sprinkling
Make a yeast slurry – In a large bowl, whisk yeast, cardamom, ginger and 2/3 cup of flour.  Add the warm water and whisk until smooth.
Let stand uncovered for 20-30 minutes till it starts to puff and the yeast is active. Whisk the sugar, salt, oil 1 egg, and pumpkin into the yeast slurry until well combined.
Add the remaining flour all at once. Use a wooden spoon to mix it together until it forms a shaggy mass.  Put the dough on your work surface and knead until it is well-mixed and fairly smooth.  Place it in a warm, oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.
Let ferment for 2 hours, or do as I do and stick it in the fridge overnight – it should triple in size.  Take it out in the morning about 1/2 hour before you are going to work with it.
Shape the loaves – Punch down the dough, knead it a bit more, and cut it into two equal pieces and braid as you would like (see above, I did 2 different 4-strand loaves). Place on a parchment lined baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and let rise for about 1 1/2 hours. During the last 1/2 hour of rising, heat the oven to 350F.
Beat remaining egg with a little salt and brush on the loaves.  Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Bake for 35 – 40 minutes, until well-browned. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack.  Enjoy!
Makes 2 1-lb loaves.



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

Lentils With Cucumbers, Chard, And Poached Egg

I wasn’t feeling well today; I spent much of it asleep. My stomach had been unsettled for a few days, but today food was not appealing to me and I was dizzy.  So my plans for our dinner needed to change. I decided eggs would be good for me, and for some reason I was also craving greens. Luckily, I had recently harvested some swiss chard from my garden.

And, I happened to have a recipe from for poached eggs with swiss chard from Bon Apetit magazine that I could work from. It was a really interesting recipe, each piece of the dish was separately flavored and spiced – swiss chard with garlic, lentils with lemon and scallions, and cucumbers with za’atar. When put together, the the egg helped bring the flavors together; it worked far better than I imagined they would.

1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

4 – 8 large eggs, depending on whether each person wants 1 or 2 eggs (locally raised)

2 cups cooked green lentils (from about 1 cup uncooked)

2 scallions, thinly sliced

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 English cucumber, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon za’atar, plus more for serving

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 bunch large Swiss chard, ribs and stems removed, leaves torn into 2” pieces (from the garden)

1 garlic clove finely grated (from the garden)


Combine lentils, scallions, lemon zest, and 1 Tbsp. lemon juice in a medium bowl; season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Toss cucumbers with 1 Tbsp. za’atar and remaining 1 Tbsp. lemon juice in a small bowl; season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Bring about 2” water to a boil in a large saucepan; reduce heat so water is at a gentle simmer and add vinegar. Crack an egg into a small bowl, then gently slide it into water. Repeat with remaining eggs, waiting until whites are starting to set before adding the next one (about 30 seconds apart). After about 3 minutes, whites should be set and yolks still runny. Using a slotted spoon, transfer eggs to paper towels as they are done.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium. Add Swiss chard by the handful, tossing and letting it cook down a bit before adding more, and cook until tender; season with salt and pepper. Stir in garlic, if using, and set aside.

Divide lentils among bowls and top each with some chard, cucumbers, and 1 or 2 poached eggs. Sprinkle with more za’atar. Serve and enjoy!
Serves 4.

Categories: Breakfast, Cucumber, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Swiss Chard, Vegetarian | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Cauliflower Pasta al Forno

Thanks to the return of the groundhog, my broccoli and cauliflower plants have been decimated.  So, I am back to buying them from local farmers.  It is so sad to see my plants with their top sections bitten off.  The groundhog, however, does not seem to like swiss chard or curly kale.  So those are still available for use.

A couple of years ago, I discovered pan searing cauliflower and all the wonderful things that does to the taste and texture of cauliflower. It is delicious alone and pairs beautifully with pasta.


Here it is paired with rigatoni, flavored with garlic, sage and lemon zest and then baked with cheese. The result is…


Both rich in flavors and comforting.

I used a good bit of crushed red pepper flakes, which added a great kick, but our 6 year old proclaimed it too spicy.  So, if you are cooking for anyone who does not like spice, dial back the pepper.

Cauliflower Pasta al Forno

Very slightly adapted from David Tanis’ Rigatoni and Cauliflower al Forno

1 pound rigatoni or other large pasta shape1 medium cauliflower, about 1 1/2 pounds (locally grown)

Extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper

3 garlic cloves, minced (form the garden)

¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or more to taste

3 tablespoons roughly chopped sage (from the garden)

½ teaspoon lemon zest

6 ounces coarsely grated or mozzarella

2 ounces finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano

½ cup panko bread crumbs

DirectionsCook the rigatoni in well-salted water according to package directions, but drain while still quite al dente.  Rinse pasta with cool water, then drain again and set aside.


Heat oven to 400 degrees. Cut cauliflower in half from top to bottom. Cut out tough core and stem any extraneous leaves. Lay cauliflower flat side down and cut crosswise into rough 1/4-inch slices. Break into smaller pieces.


Put 3 tablespoons olive oil in a wide skillet over high heat. Add cauliflower slices, along with any crumbly pieces, in one layer. (Work in batches if necessary.) Let cauliflower brown and caramelize for about 2 minutes, then turn pieces over to brown the other side. Cook for another 2 minutes, or until the cauliflower is easily pierced with a fork. Add the garlic to the last batch of cauliflower after it is flipped.


Place in a large mixing bowl.  Season generously with salt and pepper. Add red pepper flakes, chopped sage, and lemon zest and stir to coat.


Add cooked rigatoni and cheese and toss.


Transfer mixture to a lightly oiled baking dish. Top with parmigiano reggiano, then with bread crumbs and drizzle with about 1 tablespoon olive oil. (Dish may be completed to this point up to several hours in advance and kept at room temperature, covered.)


Bake, uncovered, for about 20 minutes, until top is crisp and golden.


Serve and enjoy!


Serves 6.


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

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.



Categories: Recipe | 1 Comment

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

Blog at

%d bloggers like this: