Monthly Archives: February 2016

Jerusalem Artichokes and Kale

This tastes way more exciting than it sounds. It actually is a great side dish. And, unlike most Jerusalem artichoke dishes, it was quick to make – 25 minutes start to finish.Start with well cleaned Jerusalem artichokes, like the ones from my garden.  Oh, did I tell you all that I actually sold 35 pounds of Jerusalem artichokes to a farm market?  I am so excited about it! It is one thing to grow enough to give away your extra, it is a whole other level when there is so much you can actually sell some and still have plenty left over to use and still give some away.IMG_2649I made this for 2 but you can easily double or otherwise multiply the recipe for more servings.

Jerusalem Artichokes and Kale

tablespoons olive oil, divided

pounds small Jerusalem artichokes, scrubbed, quartered (from the garden)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 clove garlic, sliced

1 small bunch kale, stemmed and torn into bite-sized pieces (from Highland Orchards)


Season the Jerusalem artichokes generously with salt and pepper.  Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a large skillet that has a lid (I prefer cast iron) over medium-high heat. Add the Jerusalem artichokes and 1 Tbsp water. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until Jerusalem artichokes are fork-tender, about 8–10 minutes.Remove the lid and cook, stirring occasionally, until the water is evaporated and Jerusalem artichokes begin to brown and crisp, about 8 minutes longer. Remove the Jerusalem artichokes and set aside.Add the other Tbsp of oil to the skillet and return to medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.Add the kale, season with salt, and toss until just starting to wilt.  Cover for about 30 seconds.Toss the kale and Jerusalem artichokes, serve and enjoy!Serves 2.






Categories: Jerusalem Artichokes, Kale, Kosher, Recipe | 6 Comments

check out this great post from YayYay’s Kitchen…Who would you invite to dinner?

In the video below, an interviewer asks couples who they would most like to have dinner with. Then they ask the couples’ children the same question. The children’s answers astonished me…

Source: Who would you invite to dinner?

Categories: Recipe | 1 Comment

Pasta with Sweet-Roasted Butternut Squash and Kale

Thanks again to Highland Orchards for beautiful pesticide-free butternut squash and kale. 

The inspiration for this dish came from The Splendid Table’s Sweet Roaster Butternut Squash and Greens Over Bow-Tie Pasta. I really like the sweetness that recipe brings to the roasted vegetables, but not the very creamy sauce.  So, I adjusted the ingredients and technique to what works for me and came up with a lighter dish that received rave reviews at dinner!

I mean, really, how can you resist colors like these?

Pasta with Sweet-Roasted Butternut Squash and Kale

Adapted from The Splendid Table’s Sweet Roaster Butternut Squash and Greens Over Bow-Tie Pasta.

1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into bite-sized chunks (from Highland Orchards)

1 medium to large onion, cut into 1-inch chunks

3 cups kale, washed, dried, and torn into small pieces (from Highland Orchards)

4 large garlic cloves, coarse chopped

1/3 cup good-tasting extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1 Tbsp demerara sugar

Kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper

12 oz bow-tie pasta

1 Tsbp high-quality extra-virgin olive oil

1 – 2 Tbsp half and half.

1 cup Balsamic BellaVitano cheese, shredded


Preheat the oven to 450 F. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

In a large bowl, toss together the squash, onion, kale, garlic, !/3 cup oil, pepper flakes, sugar salt and pepper.

Spread the vegetables in a single layer on a baking sheet.

Roast for 25 minutes, or until the squash is tender, turning the vegetables two or three times during roasting. Remove the kale.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain in a colander.

Turn on the broiler to caramelize it the squash. Watch the vegetables closely, turning as needed. Anticipate about 5 – 8 minutes under the broiler. You want crusty brown edges on the squash.

Place the vegetables and pasta in a large serving bowl. Add 2/3 of the cheese.

Drizzle with the high-quality oil and half and half.  Taste and adjust seasoning.

Serve topped with some more cheese. Serve hot and enjoy!

Serves 4    


Categories: Butternut Squash, Kale, Kosher, Main Dish, Pasta, Recipe, Vegetarian | 1 Comment

Turkey Tetrazzini

Typically turkey tetrazzini brings to mind a creamy pasta dish, but perhaps one that is a little bland and unexciting. Not so this tetrazzini. Creamy, yes, but it is loaded with flavor, downright delicious!IMG_8673.JPGThis is a perfect way to totally repurpose leftovers into a brand new star dish. I would almost consider making turkey just to make this.

It makes a lot, so we ate it for two nights, once just us, the other with company – great reviews both nights.IMG_8672.JPG


Turkey Tetrazzini

 Adapted from Ree Drummond

  • 1 pound Thin Spaghetti, broken In half
  • 4 Tablespoons Butter
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced (from the garden)
  • 1 pound White Mushrooms, sliced (locally grown)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup White Wine
  • 1/3 cup Flour
  • 3 cups Chicken Broth
  • 6 oz Cream Cheese
  • 2 cups Cooked (leftover) Turkey, Shredded
  • 1/2 cup Kalamata Olives, chopped
  • 1 cup Frozen Green Peas
  • 4 slices Turkey Bacon, Fried And Cut Into Bits
  • 2/3 cup Grated Monterey Jack Cheese
  • 2/3 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste
  • Extra Broth For Thinning
  • 2/3 cup Panko Bread Crumbs


Cook pasta until al dente (it will finish cooking when added to the rest of the ingredients). Drain, rinse, and set aside.

In a dutch oven, heat butter over medium-high heat. Add garlic and saute for a couple of minutes. Add mushrooms and salt, then saute for a couple more minutes. Pour in the wine and cook with the mushrooms for several minutes, until the liquid reduces by half.IMG_8668.JPG

Sprinkle in the flour, then stir the mushrooms around for another minute. Pour in the broth and stir, cooking for another few minutes until the roux thickens.IMG_8667.JPG

Reduce heat to medium low. Cut cream cheese into pieces and add it to the pot. Stir it to melt (give it the time to melt, don’t rush).IMG_8669.JPG

Add the turkey, olives, peas, turkey bacon, and the cheeses. Stir to combine, adding salt and pepper as needed.IMG_8670.JPG

Add the cooked spaghetti and stir it to combine. Add more broth as needed; you want the mixture to have a little extra moisture since it will cook off in the oven. If it’s a little wet, that’s fine! Add up to 2 more cups of liquid if you think it needs it.IMG_8671.JPG

Pour the mixture into a large baking dish and sprinkle the top with Panko crumbs.IMG_8672.JPGBake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes, or until the casserole is bubbly and the crumbs are golden brown. Serve and enjoy!IMG_8673.JPG

 Serves 6-8










Categories: Main Dish, Recipe | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Challah Project # 18 – Pesto Challah

“I LOVE this Challah!” was Cam’s proclamation. It has been a good week for pleasing my son.  A welcome relief after weeks of complaints.

The texture of this bread was just how you want a challah to be, soft, fluffy and chewy, with just the right amount of moisture. 

Although the aroma of pesto is strong, there is just a slight hint of it in the flavor.  The recipe calls for 2 Tablespoons; next time I may double that. I used the broccoli rabe pesto I made last week but you can used whatever pesto you prefer – basil pesto, parsley pesto, or any other that strikes your fancy.


It was a nice dough to work with, resulting in smooth, even strands, great for braiding.

Pesto Challah

From The Challah Blog

3/4 c water

2 1/4 tsp active dry or instant yeast (1 packet)

1/4 tsp sugar

1 egg plus 1 more for egg wash

3 tbsp olive oil

3 c flour (I used half bread flour and half unbleached all-purpose flour … you can use any proportion to your taste)

1 tsp salt (can be omitted depending on the salt quantity in your pesto, especially if it is store-purchased)

2 tbsp pesto (use more for a stronger pesto flavor)


Add the yeast and sugar to warm water in mixing bowl. Allow yeast to proof about 10 minutes.

Add the flour and salt (if using). Mix by hand or on a stand mixer until a ball forms. Place in oiled bowl and cover in plastic wrap or a towel. Allow to rise at about an hour and a half, until dough has doubled in size. (As you know by now, I put my dough in the fridge overnight to rise until I am ready to bake the next day, this allows more flavor to develop in the dough).

Braid as you would like. Allow to rise an additional 20-30 minutes.

Top with an egg wash and finely grated parmesan cheese if you like.

Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes. Cool on a wire rack. Enjoy!

Makes 1 loaf.




Categories: Bread, Recipe | Tags: | 1 Comment

Butternut Squash Quiche

I won’t mince words, this is probably the tastiest quiche I have ever made.

We learned the other day that roasted vegetables worked will in a strata, so I figured that butternut squash and some other roasted vegetables would work just as well in a quiche. I decided to keep with an orange theme and added an orange pepper and carrots.

The other thing I learned with the strata was that extra sharp cheddar cheese goes well with roasted winter vegetables.   So, in that went as well.

I was lazy and used a frozen pie crust.  I am trying to clean out my freezer, and there was a crust sitting in there waiting to be used. It was ok, but this would be even better with a home-made crust.

Butternut Squash Quiche

3 cups butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced into 1/2″ cubes (from Highland Orchards)

1 orange bell pepper, seeded and diced into 1/2 “pieces

1 1/2 cups carrots, cut into 1/2” pieces

1 Tbsp olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

3 eggs

1 cup milk

1/2 cup shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese

1 pie crust (frozen or home-made)


Heat the oven to 425F.

In a large bowl, toss the squash, pepper and carrots with the oil, salt and pepper.

Spread on a baking sheet. Roast for 40 minutes, stirring after each 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

Reduce the oven heat to 375F.

In a bowl, beat the eggs with the milk.

Spread the cheese at the bottom of the pie crust.

Place the vegetables on top of the cheese and spread out evenly.

Pour the egg and milk mixture over the vegetables.

Bake 40 – 45 minutes, till set. Let stand 10 minutes.

Serve with a salad and enjoy!

Categories: Butternut Squash, Carrot, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe | Tags: , | 8 Comments

The Challah Project #17 – Maple Syrup Challah

My Valentine’s Challah is a wonderful blend of two posts from Amanda at TheChallahBlog – her Wisconsin Maple Syrup Challah and Heart-Shaped Challah.

It is funny, when she made the maple syrup challah, she broke with her practice and did an overnight rise, and when I did it, I did a single rise during the day of baking. The yeast bloomed so beautifully, that the single rise worked very well.

Perhaps it was the wonderful syrup I brought back with me from my ski trip to New Hampshire that made the yeast so happy. If so, then they have very good taste indeed.

Braiding the challah was fun.  A bit of trial and error. I wish the sides were a bit more even, bit, it definitely looks like a heart.

Maple Syrup Challah

From The Challah Blog

2/3 cup water
2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
1/4 cup pure maple syrup plus about 1 tbsp more for egg wash
1 egg plus 1 more for egg wash (from Farmer Kim)
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 cup bread flour
1 tsp salt


Proof the yeast with the hot water and maple syrup.  Let rest 10 minutes or until foamy.

Add the egg and oil, mixing gently.  Add the flour and salt.  Knead by hand or with a dough hook until a ball forms.

Let rest in a covered, oiled bowl for about 1 1/2  – 2 hours.
Braid as you desire (I did my Valentine’s Heart).

Mix the beaten egg with about 1 tbsp of maple syrup and brush over the dough. Bake at 350F for 25-30 minutes or until internal temperature reaches at least 180 degrees.   Cool on a wire rack. Enjoy!


Categories: Bread, Kosher, Recipe, Vegetarian | Tags: | 4 Comments

Roasted Winter Vegetable Strata (Jerusalem Artichokes, Brussels Sprouts & Spinach)

My search for new uses for my Jerusalem artichokes led me to an unexpected place today. I had fully planned on making a roasted vegetable and pasta dinner, but then I spied a half loaf of a hearty whole wheat bread I had made sitting on the counter.

As you can see, it was a nice crusty loaf. So my mind turned to making a strata. It has probably been 20 years since I made a strata, but…why not try. So I searched through various recipes and decided on approximate ratios I would use for bread to milk, eggs, and cheese.

So, in addition to my bread and the Jerusalem artichokes from my garden, 

I had brussels sprouts and eggs from Highland Orchards, organic milk from Trickling Springs Farm, and and some organic spinach and extra sharp cheddar cheese. All flavors that would come together well in my strata.

It was delicious if I do say so myself!

I almost liked it even better as a cold leftover the next day for lunch.

Roasted Winter Vegetable Strata (Jerusalem Artichokes, Brussels Sprouts & Spinach) 

1/2 lb Jerusalem artichokes, sliced 1/4″ thick (from the garden)

1/2 lb Brussels sprouts, sliced 1/4″ thick (from Highland Orchards)

4 – 5 cups baby spinach

1 Tbsp olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4 – 5 cups hearty bread, cubed (from my kitchen)

1 1/4 cups milk (from Trickling Springs Farm)

4 eggs, beaten (from Highland Orchards)

6 oz extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated


Heat the oven to 425F.

In a large bowl, toss the Jerusalem artichokes and Brussels sprouts with the oil, salt and pepper. Spread on a baking sheet. Roast for 30 minutes, stirring after 15 minutes.

Toss the spinach in the same bowl that the other vegetables were in to coalt lightly with the remaining oil and seasoning. Add the spinach and roast for another 5 minutes.

Remove from the oven and let cool. Reduce oven to 350F.

In a small bowl, mix together the eggs and milk.

Coat a 3 qt casserole with cooking spray.

Mix together the bread, cheese and roasted vegetables and turn out into the casserole dish.

Pour the milk and eggs over the bread mixture and press it dow slightly to soak the topmost pieces of bread.

Bake for 50 – 60 minutes, until the casserole has set.

Serve and enjoy!

Serves 4.

Categories: Breakfast, Jerusalem Artichokes, Kosher, Main Dish, Recipe, Spinach | Tags: , | 1 Comment

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


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

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