Late Fall in the Garden

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The garlic has been tucked in under a thick blanket of chopped leaves and hay and all is quiet in the garden. These days it’s dark by the time I leave work in the afternoon, so I only get over to the garden on weekends. Not that there would be much for me to do over there anyway, but I do miss my evening visits to the garden. Continue reading

Meyer Lemon & Grapefruit Marmalade

Around here canning season winds down in October with apple butter and sauerkraut. There’s not a whole lot to put in jars between now and strawberry season, so in January I like to indulge in a few pounds of citrus from sunnier places to tide me over. Making a batch of marmalade will take you all afternoon, which is not necessarily a bad thing when it’s 20 degrees and snowy and you don’t really want to go anywhere anyway. Continue reading

Bread and Pumpkin Soup

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Each chapter of Nigel Slater’s Tender is devoted to a single vegetable, and includes a discussion of how he grows said vegetable his own garden, followed by a handful delicious sounding recipes. Before he gets down to specifics he offers a paragraph or two of suggestions for how to prepare the vegetable and what to pair it with, little sketches of traditional recipes and cooking methods. When I first read “A Pumpkin in the Kitchen” last June, I was ready forgo tomatoes and corn and watermelon and skip right to November so that I could make this:

The French have an ancient soup-stew whose frugality ensures it falls under the modern label of “peasant cooking.” They toast thick slices of bread, layer them with fried onions, garlic, and marjoram; blanched and skinned tomatoes; and thin slices of pumpkin. The dish is then topped up with water and olive oil and baked in a low oven for an hour or two. The lid is lifted for the last half hour to allow the soup to from a crust. They call it garbure catalane, with a nod to its Spanish origins. Continue reading