Category Archives: vegan

smoky tequila cider cocktail

Smoky Tequila Cider Cocktail

november 2, 2018

smoky tequila cider cocktail

 

A well-crafted cocktail (or mocktail) is a refreshing start to dinner. You can’t go wrong by following the seasons and employing ingredients that speak to whatever nature is serving up, so local apple cider is the star of this fall beverage.

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garlic roasted peppers

Garlic Roasted Peppers

october 18, 2018

garlic roasted peppers

I’m finally getting around to reading Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma, in which food choice and overabundance are believed to have engendered paralysis in today’s kitchens. With so many options in our crowded market aisles, we sputter at decision time. What to have for dinner? We have good intentions. Colorful vegetables are purchased at grocery stores with the operative plan being to cook them up on the weekend and enjoy them all week. Excitement turns to dismay when we see these same vegetables staring at us reproachfully from the way back of the shelf four days later, unchopped and uncooked. We are time-challenged and over scheduled. Continue reading

autumn fruit salad

Autumn Fruit Salad

september 20, 2018

autumn fruit salad

A visit to my local roadside stand tells me the seasons are beginning to change. Sure, there are still tomatoes and cucumbers and squash, but now we see the first autumn apples and crisp Asian pears. Soon there will be fragrant apple cider and pumpkins of every color and stripe. I love combining local produce to bridge the seasons, as with this spring’s Asparagus and Shiitake Stir Fry, marrying the tender spears of spring asparagus with the last of winter’s butternut squash.  Continue reading

Eggplant Dip with Harissa Aioli

august 22, 2018

eggplant dip with harissa aioli

Eggplant has been looking and tasting good at the roadside stands this summer. Roasting brings out the slight sweetness of the vegetable and reduces the astringency of eggplant, which has the unfortunate honor of being in the top three of least liked veggies when I tally my client preferences. The others are brussels sprouts and lima beans, but I always figure that someday folks will have their epiphany and decide these are loved and enjoyed after all. One can always hope.

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Thai Melon and Radish Salad

july 18, 2018

thai melon and radish salad

When it gets so hot outdoors I wilt from the humidity, I turn to cool things. Not cool as in trendy, but delicious things to enjoy which don’t involve cooking. Some days the very thought of standing at a hot grill turns me to melting mush. It helps that I have a bounty of beautiful Thai basil growing in pots on the deck, and that the anise-like flavor is most appreciated when enjoyed in the uncooked state. And that watermelon radishes are always available in warm weather months! The baby melons adorning store shelves and roadside stands have been calling me to craft tart and sweet salads with thin slices of their summer goodness. Continue reading

Vidalia Onion Vinaigrette

may 30, 2018

vidalia onion vinaigrette

 

Sweet Vidalia onions are back in season and I’m putting them to good use. Know how they say you can eat them raw? Ever tried that? Me neither, but their mild flavor allows them to take up residence in salads, salsas and sandwiches without imparting a strong oniony aftertaste. You have nothing to fear from this seasonal salad dressing in the way of offending others!

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Strawberry Tarragon Lime Cocktail

may 17, 2018

strawberry tarragon lime cocktail

And just like that, it’s summer. We may have a month to go by the calendar, but when the temperature climbs and air conditioners kick on ( with more than a little grumbling that it’s May, dangit, and why can’t we wait until June?), we long for great outdoor dining adventures. Pretty lights strung up between trees, the first fireflies of the season and a light breeze rustling the leafy trees. Yep, it’s time to dine and entertain on the deck, in the yard and on the screen porch.

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Asparagus and Shiitake Stir Fry

april 11, 2018

asparagus shiitake stir fry

 

What better way to welcome spring and say so long to winter than with a recipe featuring elements of both seasons? Hey, there, asparagus, nice to see you again! Butternut squash, it was a good run, and now it’s time to make way for greener crunchies. With my quest to add more veggies to my daily meal plan (see previous post for Socca Pizza), I am finding that if vegetables are roasted ahead, or stir-fried ahead, I”m much more likely to heat and serve alongside my main dish. Continue reading

Blood Orange Black Pepper Cocktail

february 28, 2018

blood orange black pepper cocktail

Blood orange season is mercifully brief. Don’t assume I dislike this deep red tart fruit, but its short run at the markets assures that I indulge while available and pine for its presence once it disappears from the market shelves. I like seasonality and I like to miss things and not take them for granted. Moro oranges are like that for me. I suppose I could purchase the juice in a jar, but then I would miss the opportunity to slice into ruby flesh and fill my kitchen with the unmistakeable aroma of winy blood orange. Continue reading

Winter Fruit Salad

february 2, 2018

winter fruit salad

It’s so easy to toss together fruit salad in warmer months. Rinse some berries, cut up some melon and throw in something else for color, perhaps a few green grapes. During the chillier months, you have citrus at peak season but if you’re like me you don’t always think of those fruits as part of a salad. There’s peeling involved. Work to be done. But the payoff! A brilliantly hued platter of abundance and the opportunity to play with your food and make it pretty.

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