September

Pears

September 28, 2016

Pears

Season: June to October, but can be cold-stored until spring.

Pears are one of the few fruits that should be picked when under ripe. Buy hard pears a few days before you need them, and let them ripen at room temperature until they have a slight yield when given a gentle squeeze.

To core a pear, cut the pear in half lengthwise, and then scoop out the hard portions with a melon baller. Pear flesh (like apple) oxidizes when exposed to air, so rub the cut areas with lemon juice or white wine to keep them from turning brown.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved

September

September 16, 2016

September

September is a wonderful time for enjoying the beautiful array at local farmers’ markets. September is a delightful time for gathering ingredients that will showcase fleeting flavors of summer. A walk among colorful baskets filled with fresh produce is incredibly inspiration.

Blazing scarlet tomatoes, sun-sweetened and fattened from their time on the vine, are joined by zesty green, bright yellow, and almost purple-colored varieties. Turn this beautiful rainbow into a final summer tomato salad by simply cutting thick slices of each colorful variety of tomato, and arranging them on a big platter. Drizzle the slices with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, sprinkle with a bit of sea salt, and finish the dish with finely minced basil.

Fill your shopping cart with crisp cucumbers, glossy purple or creamy white eggplant, pale green or buttery yellow summer squashes, string or wax beans, spicy jalapeno peppers, fragrant peaches, lush melons, sugary corn on the cob and great bunches of finely scented fresh herbs.

As September evenings grow quietly cooler, take pleasure in preparing dishes that feature these ingredients, such as nutmeg-scented roasted peaches, a delectable eggplant parmesan, velvety corn soup, garlic string beans or summer squash stuffed with ground lamb or turkey, breadcrumbs, fresh basil, oregano and parsley, cinnamon and bit of cheese. Cucumbers can be turned into simple refrigerator pickles, jalapeños can be roasted on the grill and packed away in the freezer, ensuring that a bit of summer will still be served as the season marches on.

There is also a hint of fall to be found at the farmers’ market. While all of the summer crops are still available to be savored, the new season is sneaking in. Freshly dug potatoes, dark purple plums, crisp early apples, succulent pears, Brussels sprouts, earthy mushrooms, carrots, cauliflower and kale will provide culinary creativity for weeks to come.

Cooking and eating with the seasons is the most excellent and efficient way to introduce high quality nutrients into the body. When we enjoy what nature has prepared for us, we are giving our bodies the gift of exceptionally luscious flavor, along with important healing properties. I can’t think of a better way to prepare a delicious life.

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“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved

How To Pick A Peach

May 9, 2016

Because peaches can grow in most of the United States, as long as they’re in season (May through early October) chances are you’ll be able to find organic peaches near you. Look for peaches with flesh that yields slightly to subtle pressure without bruising. Another good indicator of ripeness is the fruit’s background color, behind the red highlights. For yellow peaches (the more tart variety), the background should be a deep gold; for milder white peaches, give them a sniff – they should have a rich, sweet fragrance.

“Work With What You Got!

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2016 All Rights Reserved

Apples

October 3, 2015

Apples are available year-round with peak season September through November.

When choosing apples, look for firm apples, free from bruises or soft spots. Apples are sold ready for eating. Select variety according to intended use.

Refrigerate for up to 6 weeks. Store bulk apples in a cool, moist place.

“Work With What You Got!”

© Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2015 All Rights Reserved

Corn Basics

August 22, 2013

Ears of ripe cornCorn Basics

Fresh sweet corn is one of life’s pleasures indeed.  While corn is available all year-round here in America its true peak season is July through September.  This is when corn is at its best.

Buying Tips:  Buy ears that are firm and well-shaped under fresh-looking husks with shiny, moist milk.  Unshucked corn stays fresh longer.  Pick ears that look plump, with kernels running to the tops of the ears.  Tiny kernels indicate immaturity, but very large deep yellow kernels can be chewy.  The fresher the corn, the sweeter the kernels.  With age, the sugar in corn converts to starch.  Frozen and canned corn kernels are good substitutes for fresh.  Canned baby corn is used in Asian stir-fries.  One medium ear of corn yields about 1/2 cup of corn kernels.

Storing:  Cook and eat corn as soon as possible after picking.  If you must, refrigerate in the crisper drawer up to one or two days.

Preparing:  Shuck the corn and remove the silk just before cooking.  An exception is corn grilled with the husks intact.  To remove the kernels, trim the tips so you can stand the ear on end, then slice down to cut off the kernels, cutting close to the cob.

Cooking:  Corn is one of the most versatile vegetables.  Sauté the kernels alone or with other vegetables; stir into puddings, fritters, or other batters; or roast, microwave, or boil on the cob.  To boil, in a large saucepot, heat 3 inches of water to boiling over a high heat; add the shucked corn and heat to boiling.  Do not add salt as it toughens the corn.  Reduce the heat to low.  Cover and simmer for 5 minutes.  Drain.

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