Greeting the Day
At the farm I get up earlier than I do at my condo. I like to sit in the kitchen window with a cup of tea and feel the warm sun streaming in on my arthritic back. Saturday morning the fields were capped lightly with frost, just enough to ravage my basil plant—though the parsley and mint survived nicely.
As I enjoyed the early morning view, I’m thinking . . . what would be good for dinner on a brisk fall evening?
A Warm, Hearty Meal
I decided that “something old; something new” wasn’t just a maxim for brides. I could follow it for the evening dinner menu. For the “old,” I pulled out my favorite recipe for Italian Minestrone, a good hearty soup for this time of year. The hardest part is chopping all the veggies needed. After that, my stove top and biggest pot did the rest.
Cornbread partners well with soup and it comes together quickly. This time, I made it in a muffin tin and added a bit of cheddar cheese to the batter and another sprinkling on top for a crusty coating.
For the “something new,” I went with a recipe that I found in the New York Times a few weeks back: Sheet-Pan Sausage with Peppers and Tomatoes. All cooked together in the oven. The platter looked as colorful as a fall forest!
One caveat, though. The dish is cooked under the broiler, so keep an eye on it. Mine was ready much sooner than the recipe indicated. You can serve this sausage-veggie combo as a stand alone dish or stuff it inside a hoagie, or similar bun, and top with Provolone cheese. Or if you want a few extra carbs, put it over rice. Versatile, quick, cheap, delicious, and easy. What more can I say.
Salad Gets a Fall Makeover
The salad was a riff on one of my favorite bowl of greens—Butternut Squash Salad—updated for fall, with lettuce, spiced pecans, butternut squash, and pears topped with feta cheese. For the dressing, I subbed the delicious Peach, Lemon, Tarragon, that Chef Liz Huff of Catalpa Restaurant gave me when I was in Arrow Rock recently. I need to experiment to see if I can replicate the taste. On second thought, it might be just as well to order it on line.
The four ferns on the side porch survived the low temperature, but we brought them in for winter before leaving the farm. We also turned off the water to the outdoor shower,and got the chopped wood a little closer to the door.
This winter when the “north wind doth blow and we shall have snow,” what will we do then? Hmm. . . I’m thinking we’ll sit by the fire and toast our tootsies and retell stories of bygone days.