It has been a good week for Fall food. The weather has been chilly but not too cold (until the past couple of days where it swung back up into the 80s), and there is a bounty of veg, both late summer and early fall, to cook with. Last weekend, I made a chicken and barley soup. I used kale from the garden, instead of spinach, because I still have an abundance of kale. I would recommend some modifications to the recipe, though. First, I would recommend that you had a couple of teaspoons of Penzey’s Fox Point in with the onions and garlic at the beginning. Second, definitely use stock, don’t use water. And, finally, feel free to be heavy with the pepper when you break out the salt and pepper. The soup was roundly enjoyed by everyone.
Next, sticking with the Fall theme, I made an apple slab pie with a cinnamon roll crust. This was delicious (and, I may have had it for breakfast the next day.) My notes on it are that I had trouble getting it to fit the pan that it called for. So, next time I’m either going to make it in a smaller pan or a deeper pan. But, there will be a next time.
When it got warmer, I moved back to summer vegetables with summer squash and zucchini. First, I made a hasselback zucchini pizza. When Hasselback anything comes out right, I really like the look of them. But, I haven’t quite got the execution of them down. If I make these again, I’m going to use the smallest, thinnest mozzarella slices I can manage, because the cheese was hard to get into the zucchini and, it melted everywhere into a huge puddle, which had everyone scraping at the foil to mine up some great cheese gold. That was no fun.
Finally, I made an easy cheesy chicken casserole. This was delicious and well received. I chopped the vegetables a little smaller than pictured, and the results were slightly soupy. I think, in the future, that I will chop the vegetables earlier and allow them to sweat a little before I cook them. Also, it’s definitely important to use a shallow pan, otherwise you really have to go digging for a piece of chicken. I served it with angel hair pasta and it was a big hit.
I’m already planning my next set of recipes. It looks like it is going to stay in the 80s in Iowa, so I think I am going to veer back towards salads!by