All Posts In In Season

Market Watch: Early Apples

by in Farmers' Market Finds, September 15, 2012

apples
It’s only mid-September but I’ve been enjoying apples for months –thanks to these early varieties.

  • Delightfully crisp Gala are super crunchy and sweet with rosy skin. They’re good for applesauce or snacking.
  • Streaked pale green and red Honeycrisp are slightly tart and fabulous for baking or applesauce.
  • Red and shiny with a touch of green, MacCoun have the best of everything – sweet, tart, crunch. Fabulous for vegetable, chicken or tuna salads
  • Petite, Early McIntosh have the aroma of an orchard and are perfect for little hands (my kids gobble them up). They make a sweet and delicious pie, too.

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Summer Fest: Marrying the Apple With New Flavors

by in In Season, September 12, 2012

When you think of apples, two classic combinations come to mind: apples and cinnamon and apples with peanut butter. Who doesn’t love a hot, gooey apple cinnamon cobbler? Or some crisp, fresh apples dipped in creamy peanut butter? These popular pairings are certainly delicious, but the repertoire of our tart and fruity friend certainly does not end there.

This week, we are highlighting some ingredients you might not have thought to pair with apples, but that nonetheless make for a perfect—not to mention tasty—marriage. I now pronounce you apple and wife. You may cook the bride.

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Herb of the Month: Sage

by in In Season, September 9, 2012

lead
If you thought all fresh herbs were past their prime by the fall, you’re be mistaken. Fresh sage is now in season!

Sage Basics
This green herb is native to the Mediterranean. Its name comes from the Latin word salvus, which means “safe” – a reference to the herb’s believed healing powers.

Common garden sage is grayish-green in color with narrow, oval leaves with a pebble-like surface. They have a pungent mint-like smell and taste. There are numerous varieties of the herb; some are for cooking with while others are ornamental. Varieties include Curly, Minima, Dwarf, Tricolor, Pineapple and White Edge. Pineapple sage has a strong pineapple smell while White Edge has a creamy color splashed on the green leaves.

Although fresh is only available during the late summer and fall, dried whole, crumbled or powdered sage is available all year round.

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Your Favorite Ways to Eat Zucchini

by in In Season, August 24, 2012

Out of all the different varieties of summer squash, zucchini seems to be the fan-favorite. This green summer veggie can fit seamlessly into any course, be it an appetizer, main or dessert, and even its flower — which usually gets cut off before the zucchini hits the grocery store — is edible. We asked you, our readers, on Facebook and Twitter to tell us your favorite way to eat zucchini, and we received a lot of really creative answers. Most of you, however, said that you preferred your zucchini simply grilled with a little bit of olive oil, salt and pepper –  a perfect recipe for savoring the end of the summer!

Here are a few of the great suggestions you made for eating zucchini:

From Facebook:

Peggy Hurlburt Roasted with herbs, onions, peppers and tomatoes.

Lisa Wise Chocolate zucchini cake!

Mary Palmer I grind it up with onions and peppers for a delightful relish.

Mary Swisher Moran Added to spaghetti sauce with other veggies. Or shredded like spaghetti and sautéed.

Sandra Tobias Patterson McDougall Faux pepperoni on a veg pizza – absolutely delish!

Laura Dogsmom As a pie! And with strawberries.

Stef Hernandez Grated up with a potato in a hashbrown.

Diane Geitz Judge Raw, with hummus or baba ghanoush.

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In Season: Honeydew

by in In Season, August 18, 2012
honeydew granita
Food Network Kitchens' Honeydew Granita

This green melon is my 5-year old’s hands-down favorite. I’ve never seen anyone so thrilled when a fruit’s in season—she devours fresh chunks at breakfast and bedtime snack. As a mom, I’m happy that she enjoys a food filled with good-for-you nutrients. Though as a food lover, I’m happy to report that there are many other ways to enjoy the heavenly taste of honeydew.

What, Where, & When?
Honeydew is part of the muskmelon family, along with cantaloupe and person melon. This family is also known as netted melon; their skin looks like its covered with a thick, rough netting. Honeydew is very aromatic, but if they’re picked too early they won’t become as sweet and flavorful.

The oval-shaped melon has a smooth, cream-colored rind and green-colored flesh that’s bursting with sweetness. You can also find gold and orange honeydew varieties, with flesh colors described by their name, though they’re not as easy to find. These melons range from 4 to 7 pounds in size.

This scrumptious melon is thought to have originated in Persia and was also prized years later by ancient Egyptians. Today honeydew is grown in Mexico, California, Arizona, and parts of the southwest and is most abundant from late summer through early fall.

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Market Watch: Sun Jewel Melon

by in Farmers' Market Finds, August 5, 2012

melon
After my weekly CSA delivery, I was prepared to write all about a gorgeous looking spaghetti squash that was in my share. But when I open the “squash,” I discovered that it wasn’t a squash at all, but a melon!

I put in a call in to my farmer (yes, proud to say I have her on speed dial); I wanted her to enlighten me – what was this bright yellow melon called? She introduced me to the Sun Jewel. This Asian variety (also called a Korean Yellow Melon) has pale yellow flesh that tastes similar to honeydew, but with more of a cucumber-pear flavor.

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Herb of the Month: Chives

by in Healthy Recipes, In Season, August 4, 2012

chives
We’re kicking off August with an herb that’s been historically used to help promote male fertility. Learn why chives are so good for you, then try our mouthwatering chive recipes.

Chives Basics
Chives are related to the garlic, leeks and onions and are native to Asia, North America and Europe. It’s thought that Marco Polo tasted chives and brought them back home to Europe where they became popular.

This fragrant slender herb has a milder flavor than onions and garlic. The plant grows as lofty stems adorned by gorgeous purple flowers.

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Summer Fest: 6 Ways to Cook With Plums

by in In Season, July 18, 2012

There are more uses for the juicy plum than eating around the pit and nose-crinkling when a prune comes into view. People love plums, of course, but they haven’t reached the status of the heavy hitters: the oranges, apples and bananas. Even when it comes to antioxidants, that pesky pomegranate gets all of the attention. However, like many of our favorites, this stone fruit has some serious culinary chops, especially when they’re in season and literally overflowing with ambrosial juices. Not to mention, this purplish-red beauty is brimming with nourishment and health benefits. It’s about time we rethink the perks of the plum, people.

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Market Watch: String Beans

by in Farmers' Market Finds, July 11, 2012

string beans
Also known as snap beans or green beans, nutrient-filled string beans aren’t just for Thanksgiving casseroles.

Piles of slender green and yellow beans are spilling over tables at the farmers’ market this time of year. Whatever color you choose (they have similar flavor), they’re marvelous for salads and stir fries, but that’s not all. Here are 5 delectable uses you probably haven’t tried… it’s time to start!

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Herb of the Month: Thyme

by in In Season, July 5, 2012

thyme
‘Tis the season to pick up fresh thyme. Packed with flavor and nutritious goodness, make this delicious herb part of your next meal.

Thyme Basics
This perennial herb is a member of the mint family and is native to southern Europe and the Mediterranean. It comes in dozens of varieties but the most common is Garden Thyme which has grayish leaves that emit a minty and lemony aroma. Subvarieties include French, English and Lemon thyme. French thyme has a more narrow leaf while English has a broader-sized leaf. Lemon thyme has a more pungent citrus aroma than other thyme varieties.

Nutrition Info
One tablespoon of fresh thyme has 3 calories and 8% of your daily dose of vitamin C. It also contains vitamin A, iron, and manganese. Thyme has also been used medicinally to help relieve a sore throat.

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