Crunchy leaves. Campfires. Football. Sweaters. And an abundance of squash! Fall is here.
Bún chả is a traditional Vietnamese dish of grilled fatty pork served over rice noodles, usually served with herbs, vegetables, and a dipping sauce. These now internationally popular bowls are easy to throw together on a busy weeknight and can accommodate most produce that is still available (we have cucumbers, garlic, green onions, onions, carrots, and spinach available in northeastern Michigan right now, with the help of a hoophouse). This dish has a lot of room for your own personal local interpretation and I just love the mixture of hot, caramelized meats and garlicky sauteed spinach; the cold, sweet and salty pickled vegetables; the fresh, fragrant herbs straight from the garden; the spicy, pungent kim chi; the smooth Vermicelli noodles drizzled in toasted sesame oil. This dish is pure love.
Delicata squash are a delightful form of winter squash. As the name would suggest, the peel is edible, making these an easy vegetable to cook and enjoy. Enjoy these seasonal salad “boats” with the best of Northern Michigan fall produce.
Growing up, I was always pleased when my mom was making a roasted chicken for dinner. The rich, savory aroma filled the house for hours as it cooked. If I was really lucky, there would also be a heaping bowl full of mashed potatoes too and some crunchy, steamed green beans.
Recently, as I walked through the Ann Arbor Farmers Market, I was inspired to recreate this favorite childhood meal with local ingredients and some of my own twists. I decided to prepare a Crispy Skinned Spatchcocked Chicken, garlicky green beans, mashed potatoes, and a lemony pan sauce out of the backbone.
You’ve made all the zucchini bread and muffins your stomach can handle and your zucchini plant continues to grow fruits the size of your leg overnight. Beside ding-dong-ditching the abundance on your neighbors’ front porches, what else is there to do with the plethora of squash? Fortunately, a lot! Save your relationship with your neighbors, and try one of these tips or recipes instead:
Panna Cotta is Italian for “cooked cream.” This delicious dessert is incredibly easy to make in advance. It provides the perfect back drop to any soft, seasonal fruit you have, such as peaches & plums, raspberries & blueberries, etc. It’s cool. It’s refreshing. It’s the perfect summer time dessert.
Smoked Pork Chops à la Chef Michael Timmins
Nothing says summer like BLTs. Tomatoes are bursting with flavor and it’s way too hot to turn on the oven. I know you probably don’t need a recipe for this, but this is the perfect time of year to make these a weekly repeat.
Here is one of my favorite quick and easy recipes to enjoy during the Summer. I always try to make pea shoot pesto in the early Spring and freeze it for easy Summer dishes. This recipe can also be enjoyed as a cold pasta salad on a hot Summer day. Add fresh microgreens as a garnish and pack a picnic basket along with a bottle of local white wine before hitting the beach!
Summer grilling is in full swing! Local vegetables are ready to join the picnic.
Here are our favorite vegetables to throw on the grill:
• Green Beans
• Summer squash & zucchini
Grilling vegetables is a good way to meet your daily vegetable intake goals or event go meat free at the next family barbecue. Find these veggies at a farmers market near you.
The National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, has identified that a high consumption of well-done, barbecued meats is associated with an increased risk of colorectal, pancreatic, and prostate cancer due to the formation of harmful chemicals when they are cooked. Fruits and vegetables do not pose the same risk when grilled as long as you avoid charring by:
• Soaking wooden skewers in water to prevent burning kabobs;
• Using a grill basket to prevent small pieces from falling, which may cause flare-ups; &
• Staying attentive to the grill while cooking.
One of my favorite things to swap into the menu during the summer is this easy grilled sandwich when I’m ready for a break from the traditional BBQ fare. It’s high in dietary fiber, Vitamins A & C, and good source of protein- PLUS it is filling & tastes great!
Grilled Vegetable Sub Sandwich: (makes one serving)
½ sweet bell pepper (green, red, yellow) ¼ purple eggplant, skin on
¼ small summer squash, like zucchini, skin on 1 tbs. balsamic and olive oil dressing
¼ small onion, peeled 1 large Kaiser Roll or sandwich bun
1 slice provolone cheese (optional) olive oil, for lightly brushing
Cut the vegetables in uniform sizes. Lightly brush with olive oil. Place in a grill basket. Grill on low to medium heat until wilted or fork tender. Remove from heat. In a large bowl, toss with the TLD recommended The Redhead’s balsamic vinaigrette. Place vegetables (as many as can fit) on the Kaiser Roll and top with provolone cheese. Enjoy!
Nutrition Facts: Cal 442 , Fat 23g, Sat Fat 5g, Carb 46g, Dietary Fiber 7g, Pro 14g, Vit A 40% DV, Vit C 136% DV, Calcium 17%
Paula Martin is the Community Health Coordinator for TLD and a registered dietitian. Contact here at firstname.lastname@example.org