Chard and Onion Panade

Chard and Onion Panade

My sister had made this for me once before, and I’ve never forgotten the texture or flavor. It starts off almost like a bread pudding (minus the egg and milk) but after nearly 3 hours the bread and broth have become one, sinking into each other, and becoming the most extraordinary texture. It's soft and rich and smooth and almost otherworldly. 

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Corn Fritters with Sweet Chile Sauce

Corn Fritters with Sweet Chile Sauce

The most amazing part of this recipe is how the corn is truly the star here. The kernels pop in your mouth with each bite, and the flour really acts only to hold the whole thing together, not weigh it down. I am already imagining delicious variations, namely adding jalapeno to the fritters themselves, or a couple crumbles of cotija cheese. They are a great summer dinner, yummy with things from the grill or a large salad on the side.

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Asparagus Frittata

Asparagus Frittata

So, my roommates and I decided to get chickens. When I tell people I have chickens, they are either happily shocked or look at me as if I’ve lost my cookies. While there are lots of folks in the city getting into raising chickens themselves, it’s still rare enough that most people are stunned by the idea. But, I feel we are in good company. 

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Lime, Grapefruit and Ginger Juice

Lime, Grapefruit and Ginger Juice

I find there are few things more satisfying than a productive day in my garden and one of my most favorite moments in life is the first time I sit down at the end of the day to look around at all the progress I’ve made.  I pull up a seat at the long farmhouse table we built last year, drink something refreshing, and take it all in.  I imagine what plants will look like once they’ve grown a bit and begun to fill out the space.  The new mulch always cleans things up and does such good things to the soil health and I love the newly tidy vines along the fence.

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Roasted Cauliflower

Roasted Cauliflower

As I began embracing cauliflower, I discovered that I had ignored one of my most favorite vegetables of all.  I started pureeing it in Indian spice soups, mashing it like potatoes and baking it with cream and cheese into a gratin.  But by far my most favorite way to eat it is my favorite way to eat everything.  Chopped into bits, drizzled with olive oil, and left to roast until it is incredibly crispy.  Cauliflower (good, fresh cauliflower) sweetens as it’s roasted, and each little floret clings to the salt and oil, creating a caramel crunch that is positively addicting. 

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All About Kale

All About Kale

Raw kale may be a big leap for people that don’t like it at all but I would argue that sometime soft leaves are a turn off for people, and that a salad of crisp fresh winter greens may be more appealing in the end.  For me, preparing vegetables is all about the combination of flavors, and nothing holds more to true to this than kale salads. With a few basic techniques, the possibilities are endless.

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Leeks Vinaigrette

Leeks Vinaigrette

Many people come to our garden and ask us what they can grow in our unique climate. While some crops are more challenging, there are many that flourish in our mild weather and sandy soil. Leeks are one such crop that is easily grown in San Francisco backyards. And their mild flavor and bright green color are welcomed into our kitchens this time of year. I love this recipe for leeks vinaigrette – it is the perfect winter salad option when lettuce is less available.

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Pumpkin Bread Pudding Souffle

Pumpkin Bread Pudding Souffle

As much as I love pumpkin curry, and pumpkin soup, or diced and fried pumpkin added to most anything (salad! rice! pasta!), pumpkin really does make such a delicious dessert. I found this recipe a few years ago and love to wow people with the name.  Soufflés always seemed fussy, and a little old fashioned, but I’m so glad I looked past that nonsense to make this most ultimate delight. Enjoy!

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Market Guide: Tomatoes

Market Guide: Tomatoes

This time a year in the Bay Area, markets can turn into a wide sea of different tomatoes. Some are firm and almost storybook red, others are lumpy and misshapen, and there are long skinny ones with almost mealy flesh. Each of these tomatoes has unique flavors, textures and uses but how do you know which will be the best one to use for your grandma’s famous tomato soup? Or sliced up on a large platter for a simple September meal? Below you’ll find a guide to tomato shopping and eating – how to choose, how to store, which ones are best for sauces, canning, slicing, salting and just plain munching.

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Slow Roasted Tomatoes

Slow Roasted Tomatoes

One other way I appreciate this late summer bounty is by always having a jar of olive oil slow roasted tomatoes in my fridge.  I throw these in the oven, sometimes nearly forget about then, and then pluck their shriveled selves off the cookie sheet and into my mouth. These tomatoes have a sweeter and more concentrated flavor than their raw counterparts and keep for up to a week and a half in the fridge.

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Zucchini-Crusted Pizza

Zucchini-Crusted Pizza

Talk to most farmers or avid vegetable gardeners and they will tell you that often squash plants begin the season as a blessing - Tender! Versatile! Delicious! But then things change, and as the months go on the plants keep producing. Suddenly you’ve grilled squash, roasted it, made ratatouille, added a flash of basil or mint or a yogurt sauce to mix it up, and then you’re not sure you can eat it anymore. And while you may not be there just yet, it is only June after all!, soon you’re going to thank your lucky stars for squash pizza crust.

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