Jam is terrifying. It is the zombie movie of spreads. It can become undead and grow a bacterium that will kill you. I hope you are excited to make jam now.
I swear this one is not so hard, or murderous. There’s no 10 minutes of boiling Kerr jars or air-drying or anything like that – it’s a quick easy jam that makes enough for right this minute and maybe the next two weeks if you don’t get too greedy. Store in the fridge and if you have too much for you, it makes a great for-no-special-reason gift.
There is a lot of snacking that goes on in this house during the day. I said that in a passive way but really I mean that I, myself, me – I snack all day. I try to save dinner leftovers for next-day lunches but sometimes we just eat a lot. Food tastes good, yo. I could make my own lunch because I’m home most weekdays, but for all I love cooking, making breakfast, dinner, and blog-whatever is enough for me. Also, I double as the dishwasher so I try to be green and save energy (;
Although you may be familiar with creamed spinach, this mix of leeks, curly kale, and swiss chard is a much fuller-flavored mix. Rather than cream, a roux is used to thicken these stewed veggies. Make sure to use an unsweetened milk and preferably a thicker type; a high-fat soy or almond milk will bring much more creaminess and body than a thinner rice milk.
I’m sure my cousin Lea doesn’t ever remember making this soup for me. She’s that kind of cook (scratch that, she’s a real live chef) – one who makes an amazing soup out of nowhere, and then forgets about it, because it comes so easily to her. Of course, her daughter Liv has a discerning palate, too. She’s the kind of kid who would like oyster mushrooms and caramelized onions in her omelette, please. A Tyke Gourmet kind of kid.
This is a different way to prepare polenta, though, and misleadingly decadent – it’s actually simple to prepare and almost impossible to screw up, although it does take a bit of patience.
The pumpkin lends creaminess and a lovely, subtle sweetness that matches perfectly with the delicate flavors of the cornmeal and sage. Frying gives these cakes a crisp exterior that is lovely against the creamy interior. However, it can also be served as soft polenta if you are short on time or if you don’t care for the added oil: just add another 1/2 cup of water or nondairy milk in the beginning and serve after cooking for 15 minutes (see Recipe Note).
I love apples, crisp fresh air, cool mornings, changing leaves, softer light… Fall is my favorite.
And I love pumpkin. Last year my dad and I grew hokkaido pumpkin (also known as red kuri squash) and I ate all of them. Or tried to, before I left on my Big Drive to the west coast. Chunks of hokkaido make the best snack – halved, roasted, all tender skin and chestnut-flavored meat. It was like going to the cupboard for a granola bar, but more like going to the garden in my bare feet, slicing a gorgeous bright orange red kuri off the vine and roasting it in the oven for an hour.
So, yes, I promise to focus on more diverse fall foods, but I really have to get the pumpkin out of my system first (you like that metaphor? I am actually a fifth grade boy.) I am doing straightforward pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice -kinda recipes before I get all gastronome on you. If you can’t stand the onslaught of pumpkin recipes, you should leave the internet. It is not safe for you.
In conclusion: happy fall. Good things are in store.
Summer in Oakland comes in September – it’s the warmest month of the year. Don’t tell that to my collie pup Harriet, who thinks the breezy cool weather we’ve been enjoying for the past few days is here to stay. Poor kid is covered in fluff.
It’s always hard to let go of summer, but here you coast through until the winter rains come in November. I feel like Harriet – I love the transition: the freshness of fall, the bright clean smell, the colors changing. It seems like it is its own new year beginning.