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Archive for 'autumn'

ROASTED SWEET POTATO COINS FOR—WHAT ELSE?—THANKSGIVUKKAH

The rare alignment of Thanksgiving and the first day of Hanukkah has brought the invention of a new portmanteau word, way too many puns (“Gobble-Tov!”), people at the supermarket meat counter wondering aloud if sausage stuffing would be bad form, and the angst that occurs when you saddle a blissfully gift-free occasion with presents. I suppose all […]

RARE FIND: RADICCHIO TARDIVO

November mornings at the Union Square Greenmarket don’t bring much in the way of exotica, unless you count the turreted chartreuse heads of romanesco cauliflower, fantastically feathered hen of the woods mushrooms, and possibly—no, definitely—the elegant Rastafarian gentleman who channels Joseph in his Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. The past couple of weeks have brought a showstopper, though, […]

OBSESSION: FALL RADISHES

We all tend to think of radishes as one of the first fresh offerings of spring, but because they love the cool weather and grow quickly, they have a second season in the fall. At farmers markets, bright bouquets of them—crimson, magenta, lavender, rose, and snow white—are stacked alongside more-purposeful bunches of carrots, parsnips, turnips, and […]

A MARKET STORY: CHICKEN WITH FORTY CLOVES OF GARLIC

Garlic is the most potent member of the allium family (which includes onions, leeks, shallots, and so forth), and its great abundance at the farmers market this time of year tends to engender awe and, sometimes, confusion. “My girlfriend sent me out to shop for dinner,” a twenty-something said last week, holding up one of […]

BEHOLD THE BUTTERNUT: INSPIRATION FOR AUTUMN SCRATCH SUPPERS

Butternut squash, introduced to the public in 1936 and working hard ever since, doesn’t have the cachet of kabocha or the drama quotient of a Blue Hubbard or Red Kuri. What it does have going for it is widespread availability, great versatility, ease of peeling, good, reliable flavor, and now … cuteness. That’s right. Say […]

MUSHROOMS PERSILLADE

The French technique of adding freshly chopped parsley and garlic to a dish, usually at the end of cooking, is called persillade (“pers-ee-yahd”), which sounds difficult, but couldn’t be easier. In fact, it’s a great example of how two basic, inexpensive supermarket ingredients can impart resonant flavor to a dish. It’s reason alone, in my […]

OCTOBER’S FRESH SHELL BEANS

Like almost any expat southerner, I am besotted with the shell beans of summer. The native American legumes, often referred to as peas, have pods that must be removed before the moist, tender beans (ie., seeds) can be cooked. Black-eyed peas, pink-eyes, lady peas, cream peas, purple-hulls, and the small, pale butter beans called sieva, […]

TURKEY SOUP STARTS HERE

The secret to great turkey soup is a deeply flavored broth, and the secret to that is to jump on it soon after Thanksgiving, while the carcass is still meaty and moist. That’s why I feel obligated to publish this now instead of a bit later in the week. Naturally, I’m hoping that you followed […]

FIVE THANKSGIVING TIPS

You probably don’t have time to read this because Thanksgiving is only two days away. If you aren’t cooking, odds are you have to travel, and you need the time to fret about potential traffic snarls and perhaps wonder if a copy of Sam Sifton’s Thanksgiving: How to Cook It Well would make a good hostess gift. The […]

SCRATCH SUPPER: CROUTON SALAD WITH KALE

I’m all for kitchen thrift, but I take exception to the notion that croutons, like bread crumbs, are a byproduct of a loaf (often one of indifferent quality) gone stale-verging-on-rock-hard. When you start with top-drawer bread that’s no more than a day old, use good olive oil, and toast the bread with care, you have […]