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Posted by on Sep 9, 2014 in summer | 0 comments

Blackberry and Goat Cheese Crostini + Crop Stories

Blackberry and Goat Cheese Crostini + Crop Stories

A few weeks ago, I ran across Crop Stories at a farmers market booth. Each issue of this quarterly publication–put on by Athens Farmers Market in collaboration with tons of awesome folks–will feature farmers’ stories and chefs’ recipes for a single crop…

You can imagine how sad I was to get my hands on this font of blueberry knowledge after blueberry season was already over. Obviously not wanting to wait almost an entire year for blueberries to resurface at the markets, I went right to work adapting one of the simple yet creative recipes. I chose a recipe for blueberry and goat cheese crostini with basil. I swapped blueberries for blackberries, whose season lasts later in the summer, and used some mint growing on my balcony instead of basil.

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Posted by on Aug 22, 2014 in summer | 0 comments

CSA Week 15: Potato Salad with Thai Basil

CSA Week 15: Potato Salad with Thai Basil

Being from the South, my idea of potato salad has a lot of mayonnaise involved… and that’s not an idea I like. As I’ve been cooking my way through Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking this year, I discovered mayo-free French potato salad. It’s more or less boiled potatoes dressed with a mustard vinaigrette. I was amazed by the way the natural creaminess of the potatoes really sang. It’s a fairly simple recipe, and it’s a great side dish to make ahead of time before a picnic, party, or potluck (or a “covered dish” supper as some folks call them around here). You don’t have to worry about leaving it out at room temperature, and the acidic dressing keeps the potatoes from oxidizing (turning brown/gray).

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Posted by on Aug 15, 2014 in summer | 4 comments

Whole Grain Peach + Rosemary Ravioli with Parmesan

Whole Grain Peach + Rosemary Ravioli with Parmesan

I’ve been dreading the end of peach season because they’ve been SO good this year. In fact, I haven’t developed nearly as many peach recipes as I planned to because I can’t stop eating inhaling the ones I get. Anyhow, one lucky peach made it out of the fruit bowl (and past my mouth) to get broiled with honey and turned into the most glorious sweet and savory ravioli filling. Some rosemary from my balcony garden and a big dollop of ricotta completed the filling and a simple drizzle of olive oil and some freshly grated parmesan were all I needed to be in a summery-sweet-and-savory-pasta-filled heaven.

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Posted by on Aug 14, 2014 in any season, summer | 0 comments

CSA Week 14: How to Roast Garlic

CSA Week 14: How to Roast Garlic

I’m not reinventing or really adapting anything here. I just think it’s something that can’t be shared too many times, and I had some beautiful locally-grown garlic from my weekly CSA bag. Roasting garlic isn’t particularly difficult, but DANG does it add a lot of flavor! You can add its pungent yet surprisingly mellow flavor to sauces, salad dressings, or just smear it on a piece of bread. Get ready for a delicious smelling kitchen, too… just saying.

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Posted by on Aug 5, 2014 in summer | 0 comments

CSA Week 13: Tomato Sauce with Basil

CSA Week 13: Tomato Sauce with Basil

A simple tomato sauce is just one of those things you should learn how to make at some point. I can’t say that I’d made it much before this summer, but the gorgeous heirloom tomatoes and super fragrant basil in our CSA bags were a good reason to start. I know it’s easier to just buy a jar of marinara, but homemade is something special. Use it in pasta dishes, lasagna, eggplant or chicken parmesan, or as pizza sauce. An added bonus is that this sauce freezes really well, so it’s a great way to preserve summer tomatoes.

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Posted by on Jul 21, 2014 in summer | 0 comments

Herb + Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Herb + Garlic Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

I wish the oven didn’t heat up the kitchen so much when it’s already in the 90’s here in Atlanta. Otherwise we’d have roasted tomatoes like EVERY night. I’m totally obsessed. Just when I thought my little Skylight Farm cherry tomatoes couldn’t get any sweeter, I tried roasting them. And boy does it make your house smell like some kind of Italian heaven or what? These little guys make a great addition to green salads, pasta salads, meat dishes, soups or sauces. You really can’t go wrong, and they’re hard to overcook. Roasted tomatoes also freeze very well, so this is a great way to keep tomatoes around a past tomato season.

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Posted by on Jul 18, 2014 in summer | 4 comments

CSA Week 10: Whole Grain Blueberry + Banana Pancakes

CSA Week 10: Whole Grain Blueberry + Banana Pancakes

I have really fond memories of waking up in my grandparents’ beach house to the smell of Big Daddy’s (my late grandfather) favorite sausage that he’d bring from the farmers market in Raleigh and Gramma Tina’s pancakes. Gramma’s pancakes always had fresh blueberries in them and they tasted different and special somehow. It wasn’t until my mid-teens that I finally asked my mom why her pancakes didn’t taste like Gramma’s. Was it some magical grandmother pixie dust? No, it was a mashed banana (who knew?!). Add this to the list of things to do with brown/spotty bananas that you don’t want to eat.

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Posted by on Jul 15, 2014 in summer | 2 comments

CSA Week 12: Roasted Okra

CSA Week 12: Roasted Okra

Okra is something I grew up eating every summer, but it wasn’t until more recently that I realized just how Southern this little vegetable is. It can be incredibly slimy if it’s not prepared well, and that’s just not what I’m going for. Roasting fresh okra makes it crispy, not slimy. It can be a side dish, a salad topping, or just a snack.

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Posted by on Jul 11, 2014 in summer | 0 comments

Iced Ginger Lemon Tea

Iced Ginger Lemon Tea

I like to call this our “summer sick tea.”

Growing up, I always got a ginger ale when my stomach was upset. My husband, however, doesn’t like anything carbonated. So when he was sick this week, I had to come up with something ginger-y (ginger helps settle your stomach), but without bubbles. Ginger tea was my first thought, but with highs in the 90’s, that just wouldn’t do. Iced ginger tea was the answer! It’s super simple and doesn’t have to just be for an upset stomach.

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