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Concia (Fried and Marinated Zucchini)

Concia (Fried and Marinated Zucchini)

Concia (Fried and Marinated Zucchini)

Concia is an Italian dish from the Jewish tradition in Rome.

 

2 clove garlic (peeled and thinly sliced)

¼ C. finely chopped mint leaves

2/3 C. white wine vinegar

neutral oil (as needed for frying)

6–7 zucchini (cut into ½‑inch rounds)

1 tsp. kosher salt

whole mint leaves (as needed for garnish)

extra-virgin olive oil (for drizzling)

 

Combine garlic, mint, and vinegar in a medium bowl and set aside. Line a wire rack with paper towels. In a medium frying pan or cast-iron skillet, heat 2 inches of neutral oil to 350 degrees F. Fry the zucchini in small batches until golden brown or darker, if you wish, and transfer to rack to drain. Season with the salt. Add the zucchini to the vinegar marinade and toss to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight. Serve garnished with whole mint leaves and drizzled with olive oil, on its own as a side dish or as a sandwich filling: Slice open bread, fill with concia, and drizzle with leftover marinade.

Rhubarb Chess Pie

Rhubarb Chess Pie

Rhubarb Chess Pie

single-crust pie pastry

2 C. (½‑inch thick) slices rhubarb

1 ¼ C. granulated sugar (divided)

2 tsp. unsalted butter (at room temperature)

3–4 pinch kosher salt (divided)

4 large eggs (lightly beaten)

½ C. heavy cream

¼ C. melted unsalted butter

2 T. white vinegar

1 T. cornstarch

1 T. cornmeal

1 tsp. vanilla

 

Set oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 400ºF. On a lightly floured surface, roll the pastry out to a 12-inch circle, a generous ⅛‑inch thick. Carefully transfer the dough to a 9‑inch pie plate and gently press it up the sides. Drape any excess crust over the edge, then fold under and crimp decoratively. Use a fork to prick holes in the bottom of the dough. Line the dough with parchment or foil and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 8 minutes. Carefully remove the weights and parchment or foil, then continue baking for another 5 minutes, or until the crust is dry and pale colored. Remove from the oven and set aside on a rimmed baking sheet to cool. Meanwhile, toss together sliced rhubarb, ¼ C. granulated sugar, butter, and a big pinch of salt on a separate rimmed baking sheet. Roast, stirring once, until just tender, about 12 minutes. Scrape the rhubarb, and any juices, evenly across the bottom of the prepared pie pastry. Lower the oven temperature to 350ºF. In a large bowl whisk together eggs, remaining sugar, cream, melted butter, vinegar, cornstarch, cornmeal, vanilla and 2 or 3 big pinches of salt. Once well-combined pour the mixture over the rhubarb in the pie pastry. Place the pie, on the rimmed baking sheet, in the heated oven and bake for 40 minutes., or until the center of the pie is just set. If the crust get too brown lightly tent it with foil for the last 10 or 15 minutes of baking. Cool on a wire rack 2 hours. Cover and chill the pie at least 3 hours. Allow the pie to sit at room temperature 15 or 20 minutes before slicing.

Charred Pole Beans with Heirloom Tomatoes and Basil

Charred Pole Beans with Heirloom Tomatoes and Basil

Charred Pole Beans with Heirloom Tomatoes and Basil

1 pound heirloom tomatoes (sliced)

¼ C. extra-virgin olive oil

1 pound pole beans (trimmed)

3 clove garlic (peeled and minced)

2 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice

¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (or more to taste)

kosher salt (as needed for seasoning)

2 C. whole fresh basil leaves (lightly packed)

 

Spread the sliced heirloom tomatoes across a serving platter and set aside. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a 12-inch or larger cast iron or heavy bottomed skillet. Add the pole beans and cook them in as close to a single layer as possible, tossing occasionally, until the beans are nicely charred; about 4–5 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and add the lemon juice and red pepper flakes. Season with salt. Cook until the beans are just tender, while still retaining a bite, about 2 minutes more. Stir in the basil leaves until just wilted. Transfer to the platter of sliced heirlooms and serve.

Heirloom Tomato Slices with Lemon Basil

Heirloom Tomato Slices with Lemon Basil

Heirloom Tomato Slices with Lemon Basil

2 pound heirloom tomatoes in different sizes, colors and textures

very good olive oil for drizzling

salt and pepper

2 tablespoon lemon basil leaves left whole

 

Choose a great variety of tomatoes for this recipe. Variable tastes and textures will add a lot of interest to this salad. Start by slicing the tomatoes between ¼ and ½ inch thick. Again vary the thicknesses slightly to get a more interesting texture. Very small tomatoes may be halved or quartered. There is no “right way”. Arrange the slices attractively on a platter. Season them generously with salt and pepper, drizzle the olive oil over the top. Be generous because the oil combines with the juices to make a delicious dressing. Tuck the whole lemon basil in attractively here and there over the top of the tomatoes. Let this stand at room temperature at least 20 minutes.

Zucchini “Linguine” with Pistachios and Mint

Zucchini “Linguine” with Pistachios and Mint

Zucchini “Linguine” with Pistachios and Mint

1 pound zucchini or yellow summer squash

2 tablespoon shallots, minced

2 tablespoon olive oil

juice of one lemon

2 teaspoon lemon zest

salt and pepper, to taste

parmesan cheese, to taste

½ C. pistachios, chopped

2 tablespoon mint leaves, chopped

 

Getting the long thin “linguini” like strands of zucchini is vital to the success of this recipe. The thin threads are served raw and the acid in the dressing cooks the “pasta”. You may use a peeler with a julienne blade, or also a mandoline. If you have good knife skills you may even use a chef’s knife. Whatever process you use just make sure the strands are as long and thin as you can reasonably achieve. To make the dressing mix the shallots, olive oil, lemon juice and zest together with some salt and pepper. Shake or whisk well to emulsify. Pour this mixture over the zucchini threads and toss well. Season with more salt and pepper to taste. Shave long thin strips of Parmesan cheese over the zucchini, followed by the pistachios and mint. Serve immediately.

Chicken with Baked Rhubarb

Chicken with Baked Rhubarb

Chicken with Baked Rhubarb

 

1 organic or free-range chicken, cut into 8 pieces

Salt and freshly ground pepper

11 oz rhubarb

1/4 C. raw organic sugar

 

Preheat the oven to 400F. Put the chicken pieces in an ovenproof dish, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and roast in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Cut the rhubarb into pieces and mix it with the sugar in a bowl. Take the chicken out of the oven, place the rhubarb under the chicken, put it back in the oven, and roast for 15 minutes more.

Rhubarb Simple Syrup

Rhubarb Simple Syrup

Rhubarb Simple Syrup

When fresh rhubarb is not available, frozen can be used in its place. Also, keep in mind, rhubarb stalks range in color, from a light green to a stunning red. The lighter stalks will create a less vivid red syrup. Adding a few cranberries during the cooking process will enhance the color of the simple syrup.

 

4 cups fresh Rhubarb, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 1/2 cups Water

1 1/2 cups organic granulated Sugar

 

Add the water, sugar and rhubarb to a heavy bottom pot. On medium heat bring mixture to a boil. Lower heat to a simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, cooking until rhubarb has softened and is breaking apart. Set mixture aside until it has cooled. Using a fine mesh strainer, reserve the syrup. Allow mixture to strain naturally without pushing down on the rhubarb. Doing so will leave sediments in the syrup.  Store in refrigerator for up to 6 weeks. Reserve the cooked rhubarb to be used in cakes, muffins, breads, as well as to top ice-cream.

Rhubarb & Strawberry Vodka & Cocktails

Rhubarb & Strawberry Vodka & Cocktails

Rhubarb & Strawberry Vodka

 

4 C. rhubarb  (the pale pink, thin-stemmed kind), cut into short lengths

8-12 ripe strawberries, halved

1.5 C. Granulated sugar

2 thin slices fresh ginger

2 pints vodka

Optional, vanilla bean, halved

 

Put all the ingredients in a large clip top mason jar and shake well to dissolve the sugar. Leave in a cool place and shake 2-3 times a week for 3-4 weeks until the liquid is a rich pink color. Set a large sieve over a large bowl and line the sieve with muslin. Strain the vodka though the sieve, then transfer to a jug and pour carefully into clean, dry bottles. Seal and label the bottles. The vodka is now ready to drink, or will keep in a cool, dark place for up to 1 year. Serve over ice or neat in chilled shot glasses or make into a long drink topped with soda or fizz, adding half a strawberry just before serving.

 

Rhubarb & Strawberry Martini

2 oz. Rhubarb & Strawberry Vodka

1 oz. Triple Sec

1 oz. Lemonade

4 Crushed Strawberries

Squeeze of Lemon Juice

 

Shake all ingredients together and pour into martini glass.  Garnish with strawberry if you like.

 

Sunburnt Greyhound

 

304 Mint Leaves

2 oz. Rhubarb & Strawberry Vodka

6oz. Grapefruit Juice

Juice of half a Lime

 

Add ingredients to muddler and muddle the mint. Shake with ice and pour into glass.

Creamed Cucumbers

Creamed Cucumbers

Creamed Cucumbers

2 med. cucumbers

1/2 c. sweet cream

1/3 c. vinegar

2 T., sugar

1 med. (sweet) onion thinly sliced

Salt, Pepper, Dill or other seasonings to taste.

 

Peel and slice cucumbers and onions. Soak in saltwater for 1/2 hour. Drain, rinse, and squeeze out excess water. Mix other ingredients. Pour over cucumbers.

Pickled Sweet Peppers

Pickled Sweet Peppers

Pickled Sweet Peppers

1 pound small sweet peppers, thinly sliced (about 4 cups)

3 large shallots, sliced into rings

1 1⁄2 C. white wine vinegar

1⁄2 C. water

2 cloves garlic, smashed

1⁄4 C. plus 1 T. sugar

1 T. plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt

1⁄2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

 

Divide peppers and shallot evenly between jars. Set aside. In a medium saucepan, bring vinegar, 1⁄2 C. water, garlic, sugar, salt, and red pepper to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove from heat; discard garlic. Divide vinegar mixture evenly between jars. Seal jars, and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate 24 hours or up to 1 month.

Rhubarb & Orange Slump

Rhubarb & Orange Slump

Rhubarb & Orange Slump

6 C. rhubarb, chopped into 1” slices

zest and juice 2 medium orange

3/4 C. granulated sugar

1 2/3 C.  self-rising flour

6 T. butter, cut into pieces

2/3 C. milk

 

2 T. flaked almond

Mascarpone or crème fraîche, to serve

 

Heat oven to 350. Place the rhubarb in a pan with the orange juice and 2/4 C. of the sugar. Heat gently to dissolve the sugar, then cover and cook for a few mins until the rhubarb is softened but still holding its shape, about 5 mins. Tip into a 1.5 quart gratin dish.

 

Put the flour, orange zest and remaining sugar in a bowl, add the butter, then rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the milk to make a soft dough. Drop 8 spoonfuls of mixture over the rhubarb and scatter with the almonds. Bake for 25-30 mins until the topping is crisp and golden. Serve warm with mascarpone or crème fraîche.

Marinated Heirloom Tomato and Nectarine Salad with Garden Herbs

Marinated Heirloom Tomato and Nectarine Salad with Garden Herbs

Marinated Heirloom Tomato and Nectarine Salad with Garden Herbs

¼ C. EVOO

3 T. Shelled, Roasted Pistachios

2 T. Balsamic Vinegar or White Balsamic Vinegar

2 tsp. Honey

12 Basil Leaves, roughly chopped

2 Springs Fresh Thyme, chopped

1 clove Garlic, grated

Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Kosher Salt

2 1.1 C. Cherry Tomatoes, halved

2 Nectarines, cut into wedges

2 balls Burrata Cheese, roughly torn

2 T. snipped fresh Chives for serving

Flaky Sea Salt for serving

 

In a food processor, combine the olive oil, pistachios, vinegar, honey, basil, thyme, garlic, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt and pulse until finely ground, about 1 minute. In a medium bowl, combine the tomatoes and nectarines. Add the pistachio puree, tossing to coat. Let marinate at room temperature for 10 to 20 minutes or covered with plastic wrap overnight in the fridge. To serve, divide the salad evenly among six bowls and top each with some torn burrata, chives, and a pinch of flaky salt.

Zucchini Bites with Goat Cheese and Thyme

Zucchini Bites with Goat Cheese and Thyme

Zucchini Bites with Goat Cheese and Thyme

4 small or 2 medium zucchini, sliced lengthwise into very thin ribbons

1 T. extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

6 ounces goat cheese (or ricotta if you prefer)

1 T. fresh thyme, plus more for serving

2 teaspoons honey, plus more for serving

Zest of ½ lemon

¼ C. sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, drained and chopped

¼ C. fresh basil leaves, chopped

10 thin slices prosciutto, sliced in half lengthwise

 

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, toss the zucchini ribbons with olive oil and a pinch each of salt and pepper.  In a small bowl, stir together the goat cheese, thyme, honey, lemon zest, sun-dried tomatoes, basil, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.  Working with one at a time, lay out a zucchini ribbon on a clean work surface. Spoon 1 T. of the cheese mixture onto one end and roll up the ribbon. Wrap a piece of prosciutto around the zucchini to secure. Place the rolls seam side down on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining zucchini ribbons. Bake until the prosciutto is crisp, 20-25 minutes.  They will ooze a bit, this is ok!  Let them set up on the baking sheet for 6 or so minutes before sprinkling with thresh thyme and drizzled with honey.

Small Batch Strawberry Rhubarb Jam with Rose Flower Water

Small Batch Strawberry Rhubarb Jam with Rose Flower Water

Small Batch Strawberry Rhubarb Jam with Rose Flower Water

1 pound strawberries

1 pound rhubarb stalks

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

2 tablespoons rose flower water

 

Wash the strawberries and rhubarb well. Hull the berries and dice them into small pieces. Chop the rhubarb into segments approximately 1/2 inch in size. Place the chopped fruit in a glass or ceramic bowl and cover with sugar. Stir to combine and cover. Let the fruit sit for at least an hour, until the juices are flowing. I often pop the bowl into the refrigerator at this point and cook the jam the following day. When you’re ready to cook the jam, prepare a small boiling water bath canner and three half pint jars and bring it to a boil. Place three new canning jar lids in a small pot and bring them to a bare simmer. Pour the fruit and all the liquid into your jam pot and place it over high heat. For these small batches, I like to use a 12-inch, stainless steel skillet, but any low, wide, non-reactive pan will do. Bring the fruit to a rapid boil and stir regularly. Over high heat, this jam should take 8 to 12 minutes to cook. It is done when it is quite thick. You can tell that it’s ready when you draw your spoon or spatula through the jam, and it doesn’t immediately rush in to fill that space. It will also make a vigorous sizzling noise when stirred when it is finished. When the jam appears to be finished, stir in the rose flower water. Stir until it is incorporated and cook for an additional 30 seconds. The flower water is added at this point so you don’t evaporate all the fragrance during cooking. Remove the jam from the heat and funnel it into the prepared jars. Wipe rims, apply lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes (start your timer when the water returns to a boil, not the moment the jars go into the water bath). When time is up, remove jars from canner and set them to cool on a folded kitchen towel. When they are cool enough to handle, remove the rings and test the seals by grasping the edges of the lid and lifting the jar an inch or so from the countertop. If the lid holds fast, the jars are sealed. Any unsealed jars should be refrigerated and eaten promptly.

Snap Peas with Green Garlic Confit and Dill Vinaigrette

Snap Peas with Green Garlic Confit and Dill Vinaigrette

Snap Peas with Green Garlic Confit and Dill Vinaigrette

2 stalks of green garlic, trimmed and thinly sliced crosswise

1 C. extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 C. fresh lemon juice

1/4 C. chopped dill

Kosher salt

Pepper

1 1/2 pounds sugar snap peas, trimmed, some chopped and some left whole

6 white button mushrooms, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced lengthwise

1/4 C. torn mint or small mint leaves

 

In a small saucepan, combine the green garlic and olive oil and bring to a simmer. Cook over low heat until the garlic is very tender, about 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool completely. Strain the oil into a small bowl; transfer the green garlic to a medium bowl. Add the lemon juice and dill and slowly whisk in the reserved oil until well blended. Season with salt and pepper. In a bowl, toss the snap peas with 3/4 C. of the vinaigrette. Transfer to a platter and scatter the mushrooms on top. Garnish with the mint and serve with the remaining vinaigrette.

Simple Tomato-Basil Jam

Simple Tomato-Basil Jam

Simple Tomato-Basil Jam

5 pounds or approximately 12 cups of tomatoes

1 tablespoon sea salt

3 cups granulated sugar

1/2 cup basil, chopped

 

Wash and slice cherry tomatoes, or chop large tomatoes. Toss and massage with salt. Let sit for 30 minutes to let juices from tomato flow out. Sterilize your jars and lids in hot water while you wait.

Discard the juice, and dump strained tomatoes into a large, wide, shallow pan. Add sugar and lemon juice. Simmer with lid off on medium-low heat. Check and stir occasionally. Once tomatoes start to thicken, watch and stir more often that it doesn’t burn. When it’s thick to your liking, anywhere to between a syrup or jam consistency (I like mine thicker), remove from heat and stir in the basil. Spoon into sterilized jars, wiping brims of any jam residue before applying lids and rings. Process in water bath for 10 minutes, then remove and let cool. You will hear the lids pop as they seal vacuum tight. Any jars that don’t seal properly can be stored in the fridge and used first. The rest will last a year or more stored in a dark cool place.

Dandelion Jelly

Dandelion Jelly

Dandelion Jelly

2 c. dandelion flowers (harvested from pesticide free location)

4 c. sugar

1 pkg. or 6 T. powdered pectin

2 T. lemon juice

1/4 tsp. butter

 

Rinse dandelions in a colander and remove stems by snipping them off with a pair of kitchen scissors. Place dandelions in a bowl and cover them with 4 C. of boiling water. You are essentially going to make “dandelion tea.”  After the water cools off, place the bowl of water and dandelions in the refrigerator until the next day. It was two days until I got back to mine, but it was just fine. The next day, run the mixture through a fine mesh strainer to remove the pieces of dandelion. You should end up with a clear liquid. If not, try pouring it through the strainer again. Measure the tea, adding a little water if necessary to get exactly 4 C. of liquid. Pour liquid into a large stock pot. Stir in lemon juice. Sprinkle the pectin on top of the juice and use a whisk to mix it together. Stirring constantly, heat until boiling. Boil for one minute. Add the pinch of butter and return to a boil. Add the sugar to the pot all at one time (measure it and have it ready ahead of time). Stir until sugar is dissolved. Return to a boil and boil for one minute. Remove the pan from the heat. Remove any foam with a metal spoon. Ladle the jelly into hot sterilized jars, leaving ¼ inch head space, and process in a boiling water canner for 5 minutes. Remove jars from canner and place on a towel on the kitchen counter to cool. Lids will make a pinging noise when they seal. If a jar does not seal, place it in the refrigerator and eat in the next couple of weeks. Cooled sealed jars can be stored in the pantry for several years.

Green Tomato Jam

Green Tomato Jam

Green Tomato Jam

4 pounds green tomatoes (2 1/2 pounds net)

4 1/3 C. superfine sugar

Juice (and zest) of two small lemons

 

Rinse tomatoes in cold water. Dry them with towel. Cut in wedges and remove juice, seeds and the white center parts. Dice tomatoes. In a bowl, combine the tomato pieces, sugar and lemon juice. Cover with plastic wrap and let macerate overnight. The next day, pour this mixture into a preserving pan (large bottomed large surface area copper pot/pan). Bring to a boil and on low heat cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour back into the bowl. cover with plastic wrap and again refrigerate overnight. The third day, bring the mixture to a boil, skim if necessary and continue cooking in low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Check the set and cook a bit more if needed. Put the jam into jars immediately and seal (or for small batches, just refrigerate).

Canning Stewed Rhubarb

Canning Stewed Rhubarb

Canning Stewed Rhubarb

12 C. Sliced Rhubarb

1 ½ C. Sugar

 

In a large pot combine the rhubarb and sugar, mixing well. Cover and let stand until juice begins to release from the fruit. While the fruit stands, get the boiling water canner going and get jars, lids, and rings ready. Once some water has started to release from the rhubarb, bring it to a gentle boil, stirring to prevent scorching. Ladle the stewed rhubarb into hot jars leaving 1/2″ headspace. Clean rims; put on lids and rings. Process in a boiling water bath canner for 15 minutes, adjusting for elevation.

 

Notes: Scale the recipe up or down by figuring 1/2 C. sugar for every 4 C. of chopped rhubarb

 

These beautiful jars are a simple addition to many meals in winter:

 

  • Use as a pancake / waffle topping instead of syrups
  • Mix in with oatmeal and other hot cereals for a flavorful, fruity punch
  • Top ice cream, poundcake, or sweet shortcake biscuits for an easy dessert
  • Dumplings! Put a jar or two into a pot and heat, add dumpling batter and cook until the dumplings are cooked and fluffy.
  • Stir into homemade yogurt
  • Pour a jar or two into the bottom of a pie plate and top with oats and melted butter for a crisp-style dessert.
Spicy Pickled Swiss Chard Stems

Spicy Pickled Swiss Chard Stems

Spicy Pickled Swiss Chard Stems

One large bunch of rainbow chard stems, cleaned and cut to fit into mason jar, about 3/4 inch from the lip

1/2 C. rice wine vinegar

3/4 C. distilled white vinegar

1/4 C. sugar or 3 T. maple syrup

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1 1/2 T. sriracha

1/4 teaspoon celery seed, divided

1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns, divided

1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds, divided

2 cloves garlic, divided

 

Add each half of the celery seed, peppercorns, mustard seeds, and garlic to each jar. (If just making one jar, this can all go together.) Pack chard stems tightly into jars. Bring vinegars, sugar (or maple syrup), salt, and sriracha to a boil, in a small saucepan until sugar and salt is dissolved. Then pour over chard stems. Let sit until cool, then put lids on and refrigerate. Wait two days before eating for flavors fully develop. Will last 1 month in refrigerator.

Rhubarb Vanilla Bean Jelly

Rhubarb Vanilla Bean Jelly

Rhubarb Vanilla Bean Jelly

2 and 1/2 pounds rhubarb washed, trimmed, and sliced

1/2 C. water

7 C. granulated sugar

2 T. lemon juice

seeds of 1 vanilla bean

2 pouches 3 ounces each of liquid pectin

 

Puree the rhubarb in your Vitamix blender or food processor, along with the water to get it started. You may need to do this in 2 batches. Put the rhubarb puree into a clean jelly or nut bag, and let it hang over a large bowl to allow the juice to drip out. Don’t press or squeeze the bag aggressively or the pulp may come through and this will make your jelly cloudy. I do squeeze it a little bit, though, to move it along. It can help to have a jelly strainer, which is made for this purpose. You want to end up with 3 1/2 C. liquid. Put the rhubarb juice in a large stainless steel pot or saucepan. Stir in the sugar, the lemon juice, and the vanilla bean seeds. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring almost constantly. Once the mixture has reached a full rolling boil, let it fully boil for 3 minutes. It may foam up so stay right by it. Stirring is ok. After 3 minutes, stir in the pectin, and bring it back to a full, rolling boil. Boil 1 minute. Again it may foam up so be careful. Take the jelly off the heat and skim off any foam that is on the surface. Fill your sterilized jars to within 1/4 inch of the top. If you care canning: Wipe down the rims of the jars to remove any spilled jelly, then attach the lids and screw them, but don’t over-tighten. Process for 10 minutes in a boiling-water canner. If you aren’t canning: Let cool and then cap and refrigerate.

Zucchini “Pineapple”

Zucchini “Pineapple”

Zucchini “Pineapple”

You need to peel your zucchini.  I cut mine up in smaller sizes as it’s much easier to handle. Now, take out all the seeds.  A melon baller is easy to use for this.  Then cut up your zucchini into the size you want.  If you want to have “crushed pineapple” then just grate it up.   In a large pot add 46 oz. canned unsweetened pineapple juice, 1 1/2 C. bottled lemon juice and 3 C. of sugar.  Then add your zucchini. Bring it to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes. Fill your hot, clean pint size jars with the zucchini and liquid.  Leave 1/2 inch headspace.  Adjust your lids and process in a water bath for 15 mins. Remove and wait for the ping sound.

 

The recipe actually calls for you to use 4 quarts of zucchini but I only used the one large one so I had extra liquid left over and I only got 4 pints of zucchini pineapple.  If you use the 4 quarts of zucchini you should get 8-9 pints. If you are like me and don’t use all the zucchini you will be left with at least 1/2 the liquid and you can make jelly from it by adding pectin to it.

Fermented Cherry Tomato Bombs

Fermented Cherry Tomato Bombs

Fermented Cherry Tomato Bombs

4 C. under ripe cherry tomatoes

1 sprig fresh parsley

2 stems fresh basil

4 cloves garlic, peeled

1/4 teaspoon peppercorns

1/4 teaspoon coriander seeds

1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds

4 C. unchlorinated water

3 T. kosher, pickling, or sea salt, do not use iodized table salt

 

Put the peppercorns, coriander seeds, and mustard seeds into the bottom of a quart-sized jar, then layer in the tomatoes, parsley, basil, and garlic. Mix together the water and salt to make a brine, and pour over the tomatoes, making sure to cover them completely. Use a weight to keep the tomatoes under the brine, and cover the jar with a towel. Put in a cool and dark corner to ferment for 6-8 days. Taste them along the way. When the tomatoes are finished fermenting they will burst with a champagne like effervescence in your mouth. Cover with a lid and store in the fridge. They are best after 1 to 2 weeks. Notes: These cherry bombs will continue to gain effervescence even under refrigeration. The pressure is not in the jar, but in the tomatoes themselves! Refrigerate for up to 6 months.

Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

Zucchini Ricotta Cheesecake

2 C. zucchini, unpeeled & grated

1 tsp. fine grain sea salt

2 1/2 C. ricotta cheese

1/2 C. freshly shredded Parmesan cheese

2 shallots, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1/4 C. fresh dill, chopped

zest of one lemon

2 large eggs, well beaten

1/3 C. goat cheese, crumbled

drizzle of olive oil

Preheat oven to 170C degrees. Butter/oil a 7-inch springform pan.

 

In a strainer, toss the grated zucchini with the salt and let sit for ten minutes. Now aggressively squeeze and press out as much moisture as you can. Set aside. Combine the ricotta cheese, Parmesan, shallots, garlic, dill and lemon zest. Stir in the eggs and mix. Now stir in the zucchini. Fill the pan with the mixture and place on a baking sheet and in the oven and for sixty minutes. Sprinkle with the goat cheese and return to the oven for another 20 -30 minutes or until the goat cheese is melted and the cake barely jiggles in the center (it will set up more as it cools). Let cool five minutes, then release the cake from its pan. Serve at room temperature drizzled with a bit of olive oil and a few sprigs of dill.

Beef Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Beef Stuffed Zucchini Boats

Beef Stuffed Zucchini Boats

 

4 zucchini medium

1 pound ground beef

1 T. olive oil + a little for brushing zucchini

1/2 C. onion chopped

2 cloves garlic minced

1 C. petite diced tomatoes

1/2 C. keto marinara low carb, sugar free version

1 T. Italian seasoning

1/4 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper

1 C. mozzarella cheese or 1/2 C. mozzarella and 1/2 C. cheddar for more flavor

1 T. parsley

 

Preheat oven to 375F. Slice zucchini in half and hollow them out with a spoon. Brush zucchini with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Then place on a baking tray lined with parchment, cut side down and bake for 5-

10 minutes, flip and turn oven to broil, and broil for one 1 minute. Meanwhile, chop the part you scraped out of the zucchini up and set it aside. Heat olive oil in a non-stick skillet. Cook onion for 2-3 minutes or until it begins to golden. Add the garlic and cook for a few seconds. Add meat and cook until it’s no longer pink, 3-5 minutes. Add the marinara sauce, and petite diced tomatoes, 1 C. zucchini pulp, Italian seasoning and salt and pepper. Simmer for 8-10 minutes. If not already in a line, line baked zucchini boats up on the baking sheet lined with parchment paper Spoon mixture into zucchini boats and top each with cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cheesy is fully melted and bubbly.

Homemade V-8

Homemade V-8

Homemade V-8

6 lb. of vine-ripened, organic tomatoes (preferably heirlooms), coarsely chopped

2 C. chopped organic white or yellow onion

2½ C. chopped organic celery

1 C. chopped fresh parsley (stems are fine)

2 T. honey

2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. cumin powder

6 drops hot sauce, such as Tabasco or Sriracha

Splash or two of Worcestershire sauce

Freshly ground pepper to taste

 

Put all the ingredients in a large stainless-steel pot. Bring them to a simmer and cook, uncovered, until very soupy, about 40 minutes. If a thicker juice is desired, first carefully blend the vegetable mixture in batches in a countertop blender, then put it through a food mill. For a smoother and more delicate juice, go straight to the food mill. A sieve might work but it would probably take forever. Next time I’ll try using my hand blender instead of the countertop blender. Update: The hand blender worked well. Chill for at least several hours before adding more salt or other seasonings. This juice will keep for at least a week in the fridge. I tried freezing some in a small plastic freezer container but haven’t defrosted it yet. I’ll let you know how it comes out when I do.

 

Update: When I defrosted the frozen tomato juice it had separated some, so that you could see teeny bits of tomato. It tasted okay but looked a little odd. I put it in the blender, and that made it all bubbly and sort of orange, though after sitting in the fridge for a while it settled down.

 

For long term storage, this juice would probably fare better if canned in glass jars using the instructions below. If you use the frozen juice in a recipe, I’m sure it would work fine.

 

To preserve your juice in glass jars: Heat juice 5 minutes at 190°F (I love my digital kitchen thermometer). Do not boil. Add 2 T. lemon juice or 1/2 tsp. citric acid to each quart jar. Add 1 T. lemon juice or 1/4 tsp. citric acid to each pint jar. Ladle hot juice into hot jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Adjust two-piece caps. Process pints 40 minutes and quarts 45 minutes in a water-bath canner.

Zucchini-and-Pepper Gratin with Herbs and Cheese

Zucchini-and-Pepper Gratin with Herbs and Cheese

Zucchini-and-Pepper Gratin with Herbs and Cheese

3 large zucchini (about 1 1/2 pounds), 1 finely diced

Kosher salt

1/4 C. extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 small onion, finely diced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tsp. tomato paste

1 medium red bell pepper, finely diced

1 medium yellow bell pepper, finely diced

1 large tomato-peeled, seeded and finely diced

Piment d’Espclcttc (see Note)

1 T. chopped mint

1 T. chopped oregano

1 T. chopped basil

2 ounces freshly grated Sbrinz cheese or Parmigiano-Reggiano (about 2/3 cup)

 

Cut the 2 whole zucchini into twelve 1/2-inch-thick diagonal slices each and season with salt. Transfer to a rack and let stand for 30 minutes. Rinse and pat dry. Meanwhile, heat 2 T. of the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and garlic and cook over low heat, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the red and yellow peppers along with the diced zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened but not browned, about 6 minutes. Add the diced tomato and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and piment d’Espelette. Stir in the mint, oregano and basil. Preheat the oven to 400°. Heat the remaining 2 T. of olive oil in a large skillet. Season the zucchini slices with salt and piment d’Espelette, add them to the skillet and cook over high heat, turning once, until browned in spots, about 4 minutes. Arrange the zucchini in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish in a single layer and spoon the pepper mixture on top. Sprinkle with the cheese and bake in the upper third of the oven for about 25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and lightly browned. Serve hot or warm. Note: Piment d’Espelette is a spicy ground red pepper from the Basque region of France. It’s available at specialty food stores.

Fresh Heirloom Tomato Soup with Cream

Fresh Heirloom Tomato Soup with Cream

Fresh Heirloom Tomato Soup with Cream

Good tasting extra virgin olive oil

3 medium onions, chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 large cloves garlic, minced

Pinch hot red pepper flakes

1 generous T. tomato paste

2-1/2 to 3 C. chicken broth (homemade preferred, but low sodium canned works, too)

Big handful fresh basil leaves, torn

15 medium or 10 large delicious ripe tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped (do capture their juices for the soup)

1 C. heavy cream (for serving)

Crusty bread with herb butter, for serving, optional

 

Generously film the bottom of a 12-quart pot with olive oil. Set over medium high heat.  When warm, add onions and about 1/4 tsp.  each salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions start to color. Stir in the garlic, red pepper, and tomato paste. Cook 1 minute. Add broth, basil, and tomatoes. Bring to a lively simmer, cover the pot, and cook 15 to 20 minutes, or until tomatoes are softened and soup tastes fresh, but mellow. Adjust seasonings to taste. Once soup has cooled, puree two-thirds in a blender or food processor. Rewarm or serve close to room temperature. The all-important finish is stirring a generous T. of cream into each bowl.

Edamame and Cherry Tomato Salad with Mint, Dill, and Feta Cheese

Edamame and Cherry Tomato Salad with Mint, Dill, and Feta Cheese

Edamame and Cherry Tomato Salad with Mint, Dill, and Feta Cheese

1 pound frozen shelled edamame (soybeans)

12 cherry tomatoes cut into quarters

2 green onions, finely sliced

1/4 C. minced fresh mint

2 T. minced fresh dill

2 T. red wine vinegar

1 T. extra virgin olive oil

4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled

 

Cook soybeans in medium pot of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain. Run under cold water to cool. Drain well and refrigerate until chilled, about 20 minutes. Toss soybeans with remaining ingredients in medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve salad on chilled plates; garnish with fresh mint sprigs and dill.

Sweet Pea Tendril Salad

Sweet Pea Tendril Salad

Sweet Pea Tendril Salad

 

2 C. tender sweet pea tendrils or a mixture of lettuces and pea tendrils

A handful of fresh cherry tomatoes, I used tiny sweet orange tomatoes

Salt and pepper, to taste

 

2-3 ears of fresh sweet corn cut from the cob

1 T. unsalted butter

1/2 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp. curry powder (optional)

freshly ground black pepper

 

Remove the husks and the silk from the corn and cut the kernels off as close to the cob as possible without cutting into the cob. Melt the butter in a large, heavy sauté pan. Add the corn, salt, pepper and curry powder, if using. Sauté uncovered on medium-low heat for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the corn is cooked through. Season with salt and pepper.

 

Meanwhile grill shrimp.

 

Lemon Vinaigrette

 

1/4 C. extra virgin olive oil

2 T. fresh lemon juice

3/4 tsp. minced fresh garlic

3/4 tsp. kosher salt

freshly cracked black pepper

Gently stir the ingredients together, do not emulsify.

 

Place pea tendrils in a serving bowl or divide onto individual plates. Add the tomatoes and sautéed corn and grilled shrimp and drizzle the lemon vinaigrette over the salad.

Panfried Corn with Tomatoes

Panfried Corn with Tomatoes

Panfried Corn with Tomatoes

6 ears corn, shucked and silked

2 very ripe tomatoes

2 T. vegetable oil

1 onion, finely diced

Kosher salt

2 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced

1 T. unsalted butter

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

 

If you have a gas stovetop, turn a burner to high. If not, heat a grill or grill pan to high. Put the corn over the fire to char, turning occasionally, until blackened in spots. When the corn is cool enough to handle, cut off the kernels and reserve. Hold a cob over a large dish and use the dull edge of the knife blade to scrape off any remaining pulp and the corn’s juices. Repeat with the remaining cobs. Reserve the juices and pulp; discard the cobs. Cut the tomatoes in half through their equators. If they are so ripe that they’re wobbly, squeeze them by hand over a bowl to release all the juices, seeds, and fruity pulp. If they are too stiff to squeeze, grate the cut sides against the large holes of a box grater set over a bowl. Reserve the juicy stuff; discard the skins. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and 1/2 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until almost translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the corn pulp and juices and 1/2 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring, until thickened and starting to stick to the skillet, about 1 minute. Add the tomato pulp and juices and 1/2 C. water. Cook, stirring and scraping up bits from the skillet. Once the liquid is simmering, add the butter and cayenne. Stir until the butter melts. Add the reserved corn kernels and stir until heated through. Serve hot.

Charred Green Beans with Lemon Verbena Pesto

Charred Green Beans with Lemon Verbena Pesto

Charred Green Beans with Lemon Verbena Pesto

1 1/2 pounds slender green beans

2 tsp. olive oil

 

1 C. fresh lemon verbena leaves (substitute fresh lemon balm leaves)

2 garlic cloves

1/4 C. grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 C. pine nuts or English walnuts

1/2 C. olive oil

Fine kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

 

Prepare a hot fire in your grill. Toss the beans with olive oil and place in a perforated grill basket or wok set on a baking sheet. For the Lemon Verbena Pesto, combine the lemon verbena, garlic, cheese, and nuts in a food processor and pulse to puree. Slowly add the olive oil with the processor running until the mixture thickens and emulsifies, about 1 minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper. The pesto will keep in the refrigerator for 7 to 10 days or it may be frozen for up to 3 months. Place the grill wok or basket directly over the fire and stir-grill tossing the beans with wooden paddles or grill spatulas until crisp-tender, about 5 to 8 minutes. Transfer the grilled beans to a large bowl and toss with about 1/4 C. of the Lemon Verbena Pesto or to taste.

Summer Flower Frittata

Summer Flower Frittata

Summer Flower Frittata

2 T. Calendula-Infused Oil or extra-virgin olive oil

2 small yellow squash or zucchini, chopped

1 red onion, chopped

1/2 C. summer herb flowers or petals, fresh or dried

12 large eggs

1 C. milk

1 C. heavy whipping cream (36% butterfat)

1/2 C. Pesto or chopped fresh basil

1 tsp. sea salt

8 ounces chilled soft goat cheese, broken into small pieces

1/2 C. chopped green or black olives

1 loaf country-style bread, torn into 1-inch pieces

1/2 C. grated Parmesan cheese

 

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly oil a 13 x 9-inch baking pan. In a skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Sauté squash and onions for 5 minutes or until soft. Stir in flowers and set aside to cool. Meanwhile, in a bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, cream, pesto, and salt. Toss goat cheese and olives with the cooled squash mixture. Spread bread cubes in one layer in the bottom of the prepared baking pan. Spread squash mixture evenly over the bread, and pour egg mixture over top of vegetables. Sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting and serving. NOTE: Use calendula, rose, violet, bergamot, borage, or any other organic edible flowers.

Prosciutto Rolls with Arugula, Fennel and Mint

Prosciutto Rolls with Arugula, Fennel and Mint

Prosciutto Rolls with Arugula, Fennel and Mint

8 slices prosciutto

Extra-virgin olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper

Finely grated zest from one lemon

2 C. (packed) arugula leaves

2 medium fennel bulbs, cores and fronds removed, bulb. halved lengthwise, each half thinly sliced lengthwise

4 ounces Parmesan cheese, shaved with a vegetable peeler

16 medium-large mint leaves

 

For a smaller roll, halve the prosciutto slices lengthwise, so you will have 16 strips, each about 1 inch wide. Place one strip of prosciutto on a work surface, with a short end closest to you. Lightly brush with olive oil. Sprinkle with black pepper and a pinch of lemon zest. Lay 4 to 6 arugula leaves, horizontally, at the base. Place a few shards of fennel and Parmesan over the arugula. Top with a mint leaf. Roll up from the base, wrapping the prosciutto tightly around the vegetables, and continue to roll, placing 1 or 2 additional arugula leaves in the fold as you roll up. Place the roll seam side down on a platter. Repeat with remaining ingredients. The rolls may be prepared up to four hours in advance. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Let them stand at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes before serving. Before serving, lightly spritz with olive oil or lemon juice, if desired. Ingredient variations: Baby spinach, sweet pepper, goat cheese, melon, mozzarella, figs, brie, rosemary, shredded radicchio, pear, manchego cheese, parsley

CLEANSING CILANTRO SOUP

CLEANSING CILANTRO SOUP

CLEANSING CILANTRO SOUP

1 T. coconut oil, ghee, or butter

1 T. herbes de Provence spice blend; or if you don’t have this on hand, use:

  • 2 tsp. thyme
  • 1 tsp. marjoram
  • 1/2 tsp. rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp. fennel

2 C. sliced leeks

3 C. fresh cilantro, chopped

2 C. bone broth, meat stock, or vegetable stock—the more flavorful your bone broth, the fewer spices you need in this soup

1 carrot, sliced

2 zucchini, sliced

1 tsp. sea salt

Black pepper, to taste

 

Put the coconut oil, spices, and leeks into a saucepan and sauté on low heat for 2-3 minutes. Add cilantro and sauté on low for 2 more minutes; remove from the heat and set aside. In a separate saucepan, add the bone broth and carrots and simmer for 5 minutes or until the carrots are soft. Add the zucchini slices and simmer for 1 minute. Add the broth, zucchini, and carrots to the saucepan with the coconut oil, leeks, spices, and cilantro. With your immersion blender (or in your food processor with the S-blade), blend the vegetables up until smooth. The soup is now ready to serve. Season with sea salt and pepper. Thermos soup instructions: To make this as a thermos soup, sauté the coconut oil and spices in one saucepan; add the bone broth and sliced vegetables into your blender or food processor with the S-blade and blend into a smooth puree. Add the vegetable puree to the saucepan with the coconut oil and spices; bring to a boil, mixing well. Remove from heat and pour into your thermos. Your vegetables will be cooked in the broth in your thermos and ready to eat at your next meal. Season with sea salt and pepper.

Valladolid Tomato Salad

Valladolid Tomato Salad

Valladolid Tomato Salad

 

1 tablespoon sunflower seeds, toasted in a dry skillet until lightly browned

1/2 cup basil leaves

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1.4 teaspoon honey

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/3 cup olive oil

 

6 heirloom tomatoes, cut into 6 wedges each

2 cups sunflower sprouts (use 2 cups sunflower seeds for sprouting)

1/2 cup Pickled Red Onions

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 cup crumbled queso cotija (or queso fresco, feta, or ricotta salata)

 

Make the dressing: Combine the sunflower seeds, basil, lime juice, honey, salt, and olive oil in a blender and blend until smooth.  Put the tomatoes in a mixing bowl, add 1 1/2 cups of the sunflower sprouts, the pickled red onions, dressing, and salt, and toss to combine. Arrange on a serving dish and garnish with the cotija and remaining 1/2 cup sunflower sprouts.

Herbal Balsamic Vinaigrette

Herbal Balsamic Vinaigrette

Herbal Balsamic Vinaigrette

1 cup olive oil

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon raw honey

2 tablespoons chopped chives or chive blossoms

2 tablespoons fresh oregano

2 tablespoons fresh tarragon

2 tablespoons fresh thyme

1-2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

Combine the oil, vinegar, mustard, and honey with the chives, oregano, tarragon, thyme, garlic, and a pinch of salt and pepper in a blender and blend until smooth. Add more vinegar or mustard if you like dressing with a more pungent flavor. Store in the refrigerator, where the dressing will keep for 2 to 3 weeks.