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Hello my friends!
It was another great (albeit drizzly) Saturday at the market this past weekend! Thank you to everyone who stopped by the center tent to say hello. I love seeing you all. We cooked up some sweet and savory love with apple fritters and roasted veggie sandwiches (yes, the recipes will be posted in this blog). Lots of junior chefs stopped by bringing moms and dads with them and I loved all the inspiration I received from the kids. It seems crazy that we only have two more Saturdays left! I am always at loose ends throughout the winter on Saturday mornings – I don’t quite know what to do with myself. THANKFULLY we will be hosting (in collaboration with Sally Frank’s Farmers Market in Melrose) holiday and winter markets. I am so thrilled to keep cooking with you throughout the season and will be creating some wonderful and tasty (and fun!) holiday ideas & recipes.
Before I get to this week’s recipes, I wanted to take a moment to acknowledge that, as many of you may have noticed, I haven’t been posting any to the website for several weeks. I see you at the market every Saturday and when you ask me where you can find the recipes to whatever I am cooking up I say: “They’ll be on the Farmer’s Market webpage, on my blog.” And when I say that, I really, sincerely, truly, with-all-my-heart mean it. Somehow, on the road from inception to implementation, I end up taking a detour. A long, meandering detour. (lol)
I love being with you on Saturdays and really hit my groove when I am interacting with all of you, sharing thoughts, ideas, energy and food love. I thrive on that up-close-and-personal, in-the-moment thing. I create what I make at the market (about 95% of the time) on the spot when I am there and sitting down later to write out the components or steps is somewhat excruciating for me (anyone understand short-term “oh look, a bunny!” memory??). Truth is, handling the administrative end of things is NOT my forte. I freely admit that and I apologize to you all. I am working on ways to offset that and for us to get the recipes up and out to you. What I really need is an assistant or manager to handle the administrative end of things for me….but I digress, and that is another subject entirely. 🙂
A side note about the recipes: they are generally written in the non-standard “about-ish” measurements. (I can hear many of you groaning already!) And I give a shout-out (and heartfelt “I feel you”) to all of you who are much more comfortable following exact measurements. I am a rogue sort of girl who likes to experiment and am very comfortable doing things off the cuff, with no road map. To that end, I will try my darndest to give some tangible measurements in the recipes. I encourage you all to experiment with quantities and flavors and create dishes that appeal to your palate.
The roasted veggie sandwiches are a dream to make and eat! Start by roasting some of your favorite veggies – I used zucchini and summer squashes from Farmer Dave’s on Saturday. You could add eggplant, peppers, onions, leeks, carrots – whatever you like! Just make sure that all of the veggies are cut into similar sized pieces so they all cook evenly and at the same time. Toss the veggies in olive oil, salt, pepper and a good sprinkle of Bondat Foods All-Purpose (and all natural!) Seasoning. Roast at 400 degrees for about 20-25 minutes. (*note: for 4 sandwiches you’ll need 3 medium-sized squashes) If you toss a whole bunch of veggies on a sheet pan and roast them up, you’ll have some for sandwiches and then leftovers to toss into a salad (with kale or spinach) or into an omelet or fritatta or even on some nachos!
Once the veggies are roasted, set them aside to cool for a bit. Slice your favorite Mamadou’s bread (I used their yummy whole wheat) and spread the slices with a good slather of Samira’s Muhammara (roasted red pepper spread). Scatter some of the roasted veggies on top of the Muhammara and then sprinkle with a generous grating of Farmhouse Jack from West River Creamery. Top with remaining slice of bread and then pop into the oven or toaster oven until the cheese melts and the bread slices are toasty and crispy. Super delicious with some of Jane’s (West River) bread and butter pickles or Samira’s olives on the side.
Handily enough, the apple fritter recipe is (mostly) written in the “traditional” style. These happen to be gluten free (because my friend Jenna and I were really wanting apple cider donuts last year and both of us are gluten-free, so we needed to find something that would come close to that crispy, soft and chewy, sugary apple-y goodness) and I’ll bet no one notices or cares!
3 cups gluten-free flour blend (**see notes)
2 Tbsp sugar (sucanant, honey or maple syrup*)
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tsp apple pie spice (or blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves – whatever you like)
2 tsp vanilla
4 Tbsp melted butter (or coconut oil)
½ cup apple cider
½ cup milk
1/3 cup soda water/seltzer
3 (or so) apples, diced or grated (I leave the peel on)
oil for frying (canola, peanut, safflower, grapeseed)
Combine the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar (*unless using honey or maple syrup) and spices in a medium bowl. Set aside. Whisk eggs with vanilla and melted butter until well blended (*add honey or maple syrup, if using, to wet ingredients). Add apple cider, milk and seltzer and mix well. Stir in apples.
Heat oil in a dutch oven or straight-sided saute pan (3-4” sides). Bring the oil to 350 degrees (reading on a candy thermometer). If you do not have a candy thermometer, you can “old school” it like I do. Drop a bit of batter into the oil – it should bubble rapidly around the edges. If it burns quickly, the oil is too hot. If the oil barely bubbles, it is too cold. This is really easier than it sounds and I know you can get the hang of it!
Drop batter by scoopfuls or tablespoonsful into the hot oil (be careful not to splash!) being careful not to overcrowd the pan. Cook fritters, turning often, until dark golden brown and cooked throughout. You may have to experiment with the first batch or two to get the timing right. Drain on paper towels and then toss in cinnamon sugar or drizzle with maple syrup. These babies are best right out of the hot tub, so invite some friends over, mull some cider and dig in!
**notes! I use a few different flours in this blend. including an all-purpose gluten free flour blend (my “go-tos” are Namaste brand, Bob’s Red Mill and Pam’s), a bit of coconut flour and some oat flour. ratios are about 2 cups all-purpose blend, 1/3 cup coconut and 2/3 cup oat. you can certainly use 3 cups of all-purpose GF flour blend. You can easily find GF flours and flour blends at Market Basket, Shaw’s/Stop n Shop, Whole Foods, The Natural Food Exchange (in Reading) and even Ocean State Job Lot (can you believe it?? They have a HUGE selection of Bob’s Red Mill flours!)
You can also vary the liquid quantities (except for the seltzer) in this. You can use more cider than milk or more milk than cider if you like. If you want to make these non-dairy use coconut oil (instead of the butter) and either all cider or part cider part rice or almond milk.
Give these a whirl! And if there are recipes from past weeks (as noted above, we’re working on getting them here) that you just need to have, please send me an email (email@example.com) and I will be happy to send them to you. In fact, if someone sends me an email that will actually be impetus for me to write it down and then I can put it on the blog. 🙂
Thank you all for your continued support, kindness, patience and love! I am so blessed. Have a fantastic week and I’ll see you next Saturday.
Eat well and nourish your soul!