I live a little less than a mile from the Union Square Greenmarket, which, if you're not familiar, is an open-air farmers market in NYC that is open a few days out of the week. It's where I get most of my produce.
On Mondays, I strap on some comfy shoes, grab my reusable bags, and walk (or bike) over there with my list of produce for the week. I've been doing this for several months now, so I have started to know the market well, along with some of the vendors and farmers. I have my routine down and my favorite stops.
Mondays have become my favorite day because the market is slightly less crowded in the early morning, and a couple of my favorite vendors are there on that day. One place has quickly become my #1 favorite, because they're organic produce is some of the best looking, and they always have have fun things like watercress micro greens and romanesco cauliflower.
The other day, I picked up a gorgeous head of broccoli and several cauliflower heads from them, and as I was checking out I had a little conversation with a woman who runs the farm. She told me how hard it was to organically grow broccoli and cauliflower and that in order to keep them safe from little critters without spraying them, she (herself) would go around and pick off little munching caterpillars and bugs by hand.
Really? Wow. Awesome. That's some serious dedication.
I told her that there were no words to express how much I appreciated that. I thanked her and walked away feeling grateful that there are people out there, like this lady, who care so much about the quality of food that they provide for people. She rocks.
Cauliflower has been on my grocery list pretty much every week since the Fall came around. I cannot seem to get enough of it. But this soup was not originally about the cauliflower. It actually started with the sage.
Last weekend before making my market list, I had harvested the last of the herbs from my garden - half to be frozen to use in smoothies, and the other half I was going to dry. But as I was cutting my herbs, I realized I had so much sage. So much. Probably because I hardly used sage in the summer, but now the sage needed my love.
I've beena little obsessive with the sage over the past week. Sage with roasted vegetables, sage in salad, fried sage. Yes, fried sage. It sounds un-healthy, but it really is not. Lightly frying sage just makes it a crispy and flaky and mellows out the sage-ness, so it goes really well over soups and salads.
When it comes to soup and most other things, I like lots of toppings. I love the contrast in tastes and textures. Every bite is something different, so it keeps things interesting. This soup has a lot of toppings, starting with that insanely tasty fried sage. You can add more or less depending on your tastes, but I'd err on the side of more. You'll be happy you did.
Cauliflower, sage, and hazelnuts are all such signature tastes of Fall, when you put them together, it's like a Fall explosion. They were all meant to be, together, in one big bowl, especially around this time of year.
I’ve been dreaming about yellow gazpacho ever since Meghan + her friend and I shared one over lunch about a month ago when she was in town. We had a delicious brunch at a restaurant around the corner from where I live, and the star of that meal was the gazpacho we ordered. We wondered if it was weird to share soup as a starer, but after one bite no one cared. We were so happy we ordered that dreamy gazpacho.
A few weeks after that yellow gazpacho, I had another one that was just as delicious with Michael and my Mom. This one had corn and a few other goodies. It sounded so good, we each ordered one. That was the right decision.
I'm not sure why yellow gazpacho has got me all hot and bothered this summer, but there is something about the yellow vegetables that make it just right. I think it is maybe because the yellow fruits and vegetables have the perfect balance of sweet and tart. And that color! I cannot get over how bright and happy it is. It makes you feel happy when you eat it.
I've been waiting to make my own yellow gazpacho, because the later in the summer we get, the better the corn and the tomatoes get. So the other day when I took a trip to the farm stand and found perfectly ripe yellow tomatoes and loads of delicious looking corn ... I knew it was time.
I like easy recipes, but in the summer I like realllly easy recipes. Why? Because that means more time outside, at the beach or in the pool. In the summer, I do not really feel like slaving in the kitchen, or eating something hot for lunch. Salads and cold soups are the way to go.
This recipe can be whipped up in a quick 10 minutes. Your friends can be outside soaking up some sun, while you run inside, throw these ingredients into a blender, pour them into little cups and place the fancy garish on top. They will be so utterly impressed.
Big bowls of noodles make me happy. If I had to guess, I would say that you would agree.
You know what else makes me happy? Easy recipes. I have a feeling that makes you happy too.
Now that we have determined that we have two things in common, I have something I want to share with you. It's a easy recipe for a big, delicious bowl of noodles. Enjoy :)
Currently, I am in the middle of preparing the biggest meal of the year, but while my stove is simmering and my oven is braising I thought I would share this recipe with you which has been my new favorite.
It also happens to have the colors of christmas, so I thought it was even more appropriate that I share this recipe today.
Borscht is a beet soup that originated in central and eastern europe. If you love beets, you will love borscht.
This version is a dressed up, spruced up version. Perfect to serve for a holiday meal, christmas (if you celebrate it) would be ideal. Of course, if you don't celebrate christmas or if you just want to make a big batch of it for yourself, that is ideal too.
Happy Holidays! XO
I thought about starting this post with" I love chili" ... then I realized that I start almost every post with "I love .....".
I guess I just can't help myself, I love food.
Okay, but seriously, I do really love chili. Especially when it gets cold. First frost on the grass cold. First log on the fireplace cold. First time you whip out the puffy jacket to walk the dog cold.
There is something so warming and comforting about the beans and the spice. It makes you feel gooood. It's one of the most satisfying meals you can make in one pot (I'm pretty sure I say that a lot too).
I've been working on a few chili recipes recently, not just because I love chili, but because I am teaching a class on vegetarian chili next Monday at my new favorite place: Haven's Kitchen, in NYC.
It's the first class I am teaching there, so I want to be sure my recipes are super stellar. In addition to a more traditional chili, I also wanted to include a chili recipe that was a little less traditional. Something different. I am thinking this one might do.
If you live in NYC or will be in the area, check out my class and all of the other classes at Haven's Kitchen. I'd love to see you there!