Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

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This season’s garden has been a learning lesson. First, I approached it with more pre-thought and planning than I’ve ever put into a garden. I planned seedling start dates, crop yields, test soil pH and balance, and plotted and schemed about every aspect of my would-be bounty. Now, some of that planning time was well spent. I have bell peppers for the first time ever, more arugula than I know what to do with and a gorgeous eggplant plant that I was certain I would kill immediately. All that planning, but it turns out it was a plant that I didn’t plant, didn’t tend to, and thought was a weed initially, that produced my first batch of tomatillos.

Tomatillos, aka “Mexican husk tomatoes”, are a member of the nightshade family; a group of vegetables that also include potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants and peppers. Tomatillos are originally from Mexico as the name suggests, and taste like a slightly sweeter version of a green tomato. Slightly tart and citrusy, these fruits need to be peeled out of their husk and are extremely versatile and great in salsas just like this one!

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Mini Meatloaves with Garlic Mashed Potatoes

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Happy fall everyone! I have to say, this is my favorite season. The golden colors, the crisp bite to the air, the gentleness of the air and the promise of snow, I love it all. This is finally the time when I can start wearing sweaters again, drinking cider like its water and making warming, comfort-food meals. This recipe for mini meatloves with garlic mashed potatoes is a new favorite of mine. It comes together simply, makes for a great dinner and makes some wonderful leftovers for lunch the next day.

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Sunny Summer Pizza

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The summer squash are coming in at our community garden. Golden and sweet, their misshapen bodies offer some wonderful summer flavors. After excitedly harvesting several from the thicket of squash leaves, we were faced with the-“well now what?” moment. Grilled with some olive oil and rosemary, these squash are delicious but we wanted something a bit further out of the box, hence the creation of the summer sunny pizza! This light pizza starts with zesty basil pesto, and finishes with creamy fontina cheese and salty, crispy proscuitto. Sure to be a summer favorite, this makes for a beautiful weeknight dinner or an easy meal to share with friends and family.

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Honey, Vanilla and Orange Panna Cotta with Fresh Garden Strawberries

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The first strawberries of the year are coming in! These berries a small, alpine variety that are jewels of summer sweetness. Pop one in your mouth and you’ll hear the sound of an ice cream truck and feel the cool of your neighborhood pool on a hot July day.

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I wanted to do something special with these delicacies and I wanted to make sure that I highlighted them as the star of the show, rather than muddling their flavor. To that end, I went out of the box to create a fresh, colorful summer dessert that shows off the berries and compliments them with other sweets from the earth.

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Skirt Steak with Chimichurri and Spiced Corn

 

final from topHere’s a great recipe for your Memorial Day celebrations that can be prepared inside or out. This recipe takes skirt steak, a relatively inexpensive cut of beef, and combines it with a flavorful chimichurri sauce to bring out the best in both. The spiced corn is a welcome compliment to the dish’s flavors and adds just a pinch of sweetness.

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Mom’s Crab Cakes

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I love crab cakes, but I don’t love greasy, hard crab cakes that leave you like the Clara Peller of the sea, “where’s the crab?!”. Here’s a great recipe that I whipped together with mom last weekend that solve the woes of the underwhelming crabby patty. These crab cakes are light, filled with veggies and herbs and tons of, you guessed it, sweet, juicy crab.

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Savory Roasted Duck

This year was our first Easter hosting Easter dinner at our new home. I was definitely excited and wanted to do something unique for dinner. We had just hosted a dinner party for friends where we served up some primo steak so I was shying away from beef and I wanted to do something out of the ham and lamb world. I’ve always been a huge duck fan so I decided to go with a bird, but I wanted to do a savory rendition on a duck recipe. I spent far too long looking through recipes online and in the myriad of cookbooks I own and when it came down to it, I winged it and went with simple. I prepared this duck pretty similarly to a roasted chicken but with a bit more attention to crispy skin and prepping with aromatics, and I have to say it was delicious. The meat was tender and juicy, the skin was crispy and the simple preparation made for a special dinner that I didn’t have to spend hours tending to. I served our duck with roasted vegetables and a fresh pea salad for a beautiful spring dinner. One note, you’ll want to prep the bird the day before you plan to cook it. I hope this meal becomes a special treat for you and yours!

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