Gourmet Live’s Fall Harvest issue coincides with the juxtaposition of the last of the summer’s corn and tomatoes, alongside the winter squashes and dark leafy greens at farmers markets in many parts of the country. Actually, the greens have been around most of the summer, but they’re at their sweetest best as the weather cools and the first couple of frosts nip the air.
During the dog days of July and August, we automatically pair corn with zucchini and other summer squash, but as the daylight shortens in September and October, fresh corn becomes more appealing in squash soups and hearty chowders. One of my favorite soups is a purée of calabaza or kabocha squash (you can even use butternut squash) and coconut milk, topped with a corn relish spiked with lime juice and cilantro. Our cheesy corn chowder is a colorful hodgepodge of late summer and fall vegetables, all cut in small dice to match the size of corn kernels.
Then again, there’s minestrone, that Italian staple that joins the last of the zucchini, green beans, and tomatoes (feel free to substitute fresh for the canned in this recipe), along with the heartier members of the fall garden: kale, cabbage, carrots, and potatoes. My family pasta standby, kale, caramelized onions, and lentils tossed with penne, gets extra color and juiciness at this time of year with the addition of pan-roasted cherry tomatoes. For a real knockout fall main course, try our kale, butternut squash and pancetta phyllo pie. Doesn’t everything looks better wrapped in phyllo?
So grab the gusto and embrace this transitional time of year when the best of two seasons of produce are just waiting to be tossed together in your kitchen. Who knows, your ingenuity coupled with their flavors could result in an exciting new harvest creation. Whatever you’re concocting, we’d love to know about it!
Summer squash is one of the season’s most versatile veggies, pairing perfectly with your choice of char-grilled meats or seafood. This week, we’re rounding up a few of our favorite ways to celebrate all things fresh and flavorful.
- Eats Well With Others has proudly perfected her pie crust in this standout recipe for Summer Squash and Ricotta Galette, which tops a flaky crust with olive oil, thyme, two cheeses, and thin slices of summer squash (pictured above).
- Debbie Does Dinner will convert any skeptics into squash fanatics with her Summer Squash Casserole.
- Homestead Garden’s Thai Summer Squash and Shrimp Soup blends creamy coconut milk with zesty spices and fresh veggies.
- Forget the tortilla chips and try Zucchini Chips by Meadowfork Vineyard and Organic Gardens.
- Three Many Cooks has discovered the secret to using up their share of fresh CSA produce: Summer Squash Sauté with Corn and Goat Cheese Polenta.
- Nutmeg Nanny takes breakfast pancakes to new heights with a sweet and savory recipe for Summer Squash Pancakes with Creamy Goat Cheese Dressing.
Gen Y Foodie keeps it simple with fall’s star produce by tossing creamy delicata squash with olive oil, salt, and pepper then roasting the slices until tender in her recipe for Delicata Squash Rings. Top off the seasonal side dish with chopped fresh parsley for a quick and easy addition to your Thanksgiving spread.
Winter squash is the perfect way to give your next fall meal a hearty upgrade. The best part about this autumn gourd is that you can eat the whole thing (save for the stem of course), and its thick skin gives it a sturdy shape making it ultra-versatile. Gen Y Foodie stuffs her sweet dumpling squash with chicken sausage sautéed with carrots, celery, and onions, and mixed with breadcrumbs and Parmesan. This meal-in-a-bowl is as delicious as it is colorful.
- Stephanie Hua of Lick My Spoon combines soup and sandwich with her take on Butternut Squash Soup with Gingerbread and Brown Butter (pictured above).
- Caroline of Whipped takes us back to the basics with a simple recipe for Baked Acorn Squash with pepper, nutmeg and brown sugar.
- Life in Recipes accidentally discovered a delicious shortcut to Frozen Pumpkin Cranberry Mousse.
- Squash Salad with Lentils and Goat Cheese from Smitten Kitchen creates a crunchy and smoky autumn treat.
- Pumpkin pie gets a mini makeover from Cake Spy in Serious Eats’ Pumpkin Pie Pops recipe.
- Cristina, From Buenos Aires to Paris bakes up a savory family tradition with her Beef and Pumpkin Pie.
- Sage and Gruyere join forces to make Butternut Squash and Sage Rigatoni on Family Kitchen.
- Piccante Dolce uses the bumpy Blue Habbard squash to make Whole Wheat Winter Squash Pancakes.