Cold Comfort

November 3, 2010

It’s been too long, but I love the fall, especially for cooking. It’s time for comfort food. To me, that means squash, beets, turnips, soup and Octoberfest. Abiding by this primal need or just my cravings, we’ve cooked and eaten many squashes in many forms.

We made a delicious squash and pear soup with sage, which surprised us with its robustness. Chunky and rich and satisfying. One of my favorites of the season. I love turning on the oven and roasting vegetables from the previous day’s harvest or Farmer’s Market. We did this with our potatoes and fennel (from the Co-Op), too. We also made a creamy butternut squash pasta with sage and nutmeg, a pear-squash soup and an acorn squash pie with a cider and Grape Nut crust. The flavors of the fall really speak to my palate.

For Labor Day weekend, we traveled to Jersey to see our people, and made plans for a dinner to impress. Radicchio is also a fall friend. And artichokes, tofu sausage, preserved lemon and pasta never go out of season, so we made a memorable meal from these ingredients that included a creamy lemon-white wine pasta with sage, sausage and grilled artichokes. The accompanying salad, which was inspired by a visit to Hope & Olive last year, was comprised of grilled radicchio, almonds, carmelized onions, lettuce mix and a great balsamic dressing.

Speaking of Hope & Olive, my sister took me there for a birthday party, and we ate well once again. We shared a radish and turnip salad and each got a tasty grilled miso and pickled veggie sandwich. I wish we could afford to go there more often (and that it was closer).

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