Fall Salads

Four-Bean Tomato Salad on Escarole with Roasted Garlic Dressing

1 can white kidney beans
1 can red kidney beans
1 can black beans
1 cup cut green beans, cooked
1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1/2 head escarole, torn
2 tablespoons fresh parsley (optional)
Roasted Garlic Dressing
1 head garlic
1/3 cup olive
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425 F. Trim tip off garlic head. Wrap in foil and roast until tender, about 40 minutes. Let cool. Squeeze pulp into small bowl. Whisk in oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Dressing can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Drain and rinse canned beans. Place in a large bowl. Add half of the dressing. Toss to coat. Add green beans, tomatoes, and escarole. Toss to coat. Sprinkle with parsley. Serves 6.

Escarole and Ham Soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium-large yellow onion, cut into small dice
salt and pepper to taste
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup of carrots, cut into 1/4-inch coins
4 cups coarsely chopped escarole
2 cups diced, smoked ham
1 cup fresh or canned tomatoes
2 cups frozen peas
1 15 1/2-oz can white beans, drained
1 tablespoon chopped tarragon
1 tablespoon lemon juice or to taste

Heat the olive oil in Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion and sprinkle with a little salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and a little browned, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the broth, carrots, escarole, ham and tomato. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to beans. Return the pot to a simmer and cook until vegetables are fully tender, 4-5 minutes. Let the soup rest for 5 minutes and then add tarragon and lemon juice. Taste and adjust seasonings with salt, pepper, lemon juice and tarragon. Serves 6 to 8.

Delicata Squash with Caramelized Shallots

1 or 2 small delicate squash
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup dry sherry
salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup thinly sliced shallots
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage, basil, or rosemary (optional)

Heat oven to 350F. Peel the squash, leaving the skin in the cervices (it is tender enough to eat). Trim the ends. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Slice the halves crosswise into 1/2 thick slices. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a 10-inch skillet over a medium dry heat. Add half of the squash in a single layer and cook without moving until the slices begin to brown, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook until the second side begins to brown, 1-2 minutes. Transfer to a 9×13-inch making dish. Repeat with remaining squash, adding more oil if needed. Arrange the squash in the dish. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of sherry and season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining olive oil and the butter in the skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and a pinch of salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the shallots turn deep golden brown on the edges, 3 to 5 minutes. Take the pan off the heat and add the fresh herbs (if using) and the remaining sherry. Scrape up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Scatter shallots over the squash. Cover the pan with foil and bake until the squash is tender, 15-30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Ann’s October Salad

6-8 cups escarole, washed, drained well and torn into bite-sized pieces, coarse outer leaves kept for another use (spicy salad greens can also be used)
3 pears, cored, quartered and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup pecan pieces, toasted
1/2 cup blue, goat or other strong cheese

Cranberry Vinaigrette
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup dried cranberries
salt and pepper to taste

Combine vinaigrette ingredients in a blender or food processor and whirl until the cranberries are finely minced. Set aside. Toss pear slices with lemon juice. Place the escarole in a bowl. Add pears. Toss with vinaigrette. Top with pecans and cheese. Serves 6-8 people.

Moosewood Restaurant’s October Bitter Sweet Salad

Cranberry Vinaigrette
1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons cider vinegar or white wine vinegar 2 teaspoons sugar
1⁄4 cup dried cranberries
1 teaspoon salt, 1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

Salad
8 cups mixed field greens, rinsed (e.g. arugula, watercress, mizuna, frisee)
2 to 3 firm but ripe bartlett pears, cored and thinly sliced (about 4 cups)
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 cups peeled and shredded or thinly sliced turnips or 2 cups celery heart stalks, sliced on the diagonal 1⁄4 cup dried cranberries
1⁄4 cup crumbled goat cheese or blue cheese (optional)

Combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a blender or food processor and whirl until the dried cranberries are finely minced and suspended in the dressing. Set aside.
Tear the salad greens into bite-sized pieces and arrange on individual plates or on a large platter. Toss the pear slices and lemon juice together in a bowl to evenly coat the pears and prevent discoloration; then arrange them on the greens. Top with the turnip or celery heart slices and sprinkle on the cranberries. Finish with the crumbled cheese, if using.
Shake up or stir the Cranberry Vinaigrette and drizzle it evenly over the salad just before serving. From: moosewood restaurant celebrates. 2003.

Roasted Beet and Arugula Salad with Walnut Dressing

1 1⁄2 lb beets (6 – 8), washed and trimmed 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 sprig fresh rosemary
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1⁄2 teaspoon each salt and pepper
8 cups arugula
1 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped

Walnut Vinaigrette:
1/3 cup walnut or extra-virgin olive oil
1 small shallot or half green onion, minced 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1⁄2 teaspoon dry mustard
1⁄4 teaspoon each salt and pepper
pinch granulated sugar

Roasting Beets:
Place beets on a 20-inch piece of foil. Sprinkle with garlic, rosemary, oil, salt and pepper. Fold and seal edges to form packet. Roast on a baking sheet at 400 F for about 1 1⁄2 hours or until fork tender. Let cool until cool enough to handle. Peel and trim beets. Cut into 1-inch thick wedges. This can be done ahead of time and the beets refrigerated, then allowed to come back to room temperature.

Walnut Vinaigrette:
In a large bowl, whisk together oil, shallot, vinegar, mustard, salt, pepper and sugar. Transfer 2 tablespoons to a separate bowl; add beets and toss to coat.

Salad:
Add arugula to remaining vinaigrette. Toss to coat. Divide among plates. Top with beets. Sprinkle with walnuts. 8 servings.
From: Canadian Living, December 2007

Fennel, Frisee and Escarole Salad

3 tablespoons minced shallot
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
1 small head escarole, torn into bite-sized pieces 1 small head frisee, torn into bite-sized pieces
1 small fennel bulb, quartered and thinly sliced 1⁄4 cup olive oil
1⁄2 lb Parmesan cheese, shaved

Stir together shallot, lemon juice, salt, pepper in a small bowl. Let stand 5 minutes.
Toss together escarole, frisee and fennel. Whisk oil into shallot mixture. Toss with salad. Top with Parmesan.

Basic Vinaigrette

Rule of thumb 1 part vinegar, 3 to 4 parts oil
Pour into a small bowl:
1 tablespoon vinegar (white wine, red wine, balsamic) or lemon juice
Add:
salt and black pepper
Stir to dissolve.
Use a fork or small whisk to slowly beat in:
3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Pan-Asian Slaw

2 1⁄2 cups Chinese (Napa) cabbage, shredded
1⁄2 cup shredded carrots
2 thinly sliced green onions
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
salt to taste
1 teaspoon maple syrup or sugar
1 1⁄2 tablespoons rice vinegar or white vinegar

Toss together the Chinese cabbage and carrots. Place green onions on top, but do not mix.

In a small microwave-safe cup or in a small pan, heat oil until hot – almost smoking- and pour over
green onions. Sprinkle on salt, maple syrup or sugar and vinegar. Toss well. Serve immediately or keep refrigerated for up to a few days. Serves 4.

Carrot and Daikon Salad

2 cups grated Daikon radish
1 medium carrot, grated
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar 2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon light soy sauce

Combine radish and carrot in a bowl. Sprinkle with salt and let stand for 30 minutes. Squeeze out liquid and transfer to a serving dish.

Combine vinegar, sugar and soy sauce in a small pan and bring just to a boil. Remove from heat and let cool. Pour dressing over vegetables, toss well and refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving . Serves 4 – 6.

Fall Greens Salad with Roasted Beets and Orange Vinaigrette

4 medium-size red or golden beets, washed and trimmed
2 shallots or 1 red onion, minced
2 tablespoons sherry or wine vinegar
juice and zest of 1 orange
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
4-5 cups spicy greens, arugula, frisee or escarole, washed, dried and torn
1/2 cup walnuts or pecans, toasted and lightly chopped

Heat the oven to 400 F. Put the beets in a small baking dish with 1/2 cup of water. Cover tightly with foil and roast until beets are tender 50-70 minutes. When beets are tender let cool, then peel and cut into 1/2-inch dice.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl combine shallots or onions, vinegar, orange juice and zest. In a thin stream whisk in olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss beets with 1-2 tablespoons of vinaigrette. Toss greens with some of the remaining vinaigrette. Save any extra for another time. Divide greens among plates. Top with beets and nuts. Serves 4-6 people.

Mixed Salad Greens with Goat Cheese

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar or herb vinegar
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup vegetable or olive oil
8 cups mixed salad greens, torn to bite size
1/2 cup soft goat cheese

Whisk together vinegar, soy sauce, mustard, salt and pepper. Add oil in a steady stream continuing to whisk. Place greens in a large bowl. Drizzle with some of the dressing and toss. The greens should just be lightly coated. Sprinkle with small dabs of goat cheese and serve. Serves 6-8 people.

Shredded Zucchini

2 cups shredded zucchini, green or yellow
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
salt and black pepper to taste

Summer Squash Skillet

4 cups summer squash (green or yellow zucchini or patty pan or a mix), sliced, diced or shredded
½ cup onion, sliced or diced
1 – 2 garlic cloves, minced or chopped garlic scapes
salt and pepper to taste
Saute in 1 tablespoon oil until tender (time will depend on the size of the pieces).

Add one of:
Option 1: Soy sauce to taste before serving.
Option 2: 2 tablespoons of Pesto before serving
Option 3: 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or peppermint just before serving
Option 4: ½ cup of diced pepper, 2 tablespoons of chopped parsley and 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh basil with the squash.  Top with 1/2 cup of shredded cheese just before serving.

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the zucchini and garlic. Saute on medium heat, tossing often, for about 5 minutes or until the excess moisture has evaporated. The zucchini should be brightly coloured and firm-tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Variations:
- add a tablespoon of chopped fresh basil and a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese
- add a tablespoon of chopped fresh dill and sprinkle with grated feta cheese
- add half a teaspoon of cumin and a tablespoon of chopped cilantro

Baked Beets (and Shallots or Onions)

2 pounds of fresh beets (6 medium or 10 small), a mix of red and golden, but put them in separate casserole dishes
1/2 pound shallots (about 8 large) or 3 medium onions, peeled and onions quartered (optional)
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 F.

Wash the beets and trim the stems and tails. Place beets and shallots or onions (if you are using them) on a large sheet of aluminum foil and fold the edges together to seal tightly. Add a tablespoon of water. Or you can use a casserole dish with a tight fitting lid. Bake for about 1 hour, or until the beets are tender and easily pierced with a knife.

Remove the beets from the oven and set aside to cool. In a small bowl mix together the vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. When the beets are cool enough to handle, rub off the skin and cut them into chunks or wedges. Place beets (and shallots or onions) in a serving bowl. Drizzle the dressing over them and toss well. Serve warm or at room temperature. Serves 6.

Summer Squash and Pasta

1 pound summer squash, cut into 1/2-inch-thick batons or dice, steamed until tender
1 pound penne or macaroni, cooked al dente, drained
1/2 to 3/4 cup pesto

Toss the summer squash, pasta and pesto together in a bowl.
Serve.
Serves 4 to 6

Zucchini & Corn Saute

2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup chopped green onions or Spanish onions
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 cups corn (fresh or frozen)
2 medium zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick pieces
1/4 teaspoon cumin
salt and pepper taste
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

Heat oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add green onions, stirring occasionally, until softened 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and cook, 1 minute. Add corn, zucchini, cumin, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until zucchini is tender, 4 – 6 minutes. Stir in cilantro.
Serves 4 – 6

Zucchini Brownies

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Combine in a large bowl:
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Stir in: 2-3 cups shredded zucchini
Combine in a seperate bowl:
1 egg
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
Beat with a fork. Stir into zucchini mixture. Spread into a greased 9×13 pan.
Sprinkle on top:
1/2 – 1 cup semisweet or mint chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Bake for 35 – 40 minutes, until toothpick inserted in centre comes out clean.

Mixed Green Salad with Goat Cheese

2 tablespoons wine or balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup vegetable oil or olive oil
8 cups mixed salad greens
1/2 cup creamy soft goat’s milk cheese, crumbled or cottage cheese

Whisk together vinegar, soy sauce, mustard, salt and pepper. Add oil in a steady stream, continuing to whisk until mixture has emulsified. Vinaigrette can be stored in the refrigerator for a day or two.

Place salad greens in a large bowl. Drizzle some of the vinaigrette over the greens and toss. The greens should just be lightly coated. Sprinkle crumbled cheese over salad and serve.
Serves 6-8

Mixed Greens with Maple Vinaigrette

1/4 cup olive or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon maple syrup
2-3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon, dill or peppermint (optional)
6-8 cups bite-sized mixed salad greens or spinach
1/4 cup chopped toasted hazelnuts, pecans or walnuts

Whisk together oil, maple syrup, balsamic vinegar, mustard, salt, pepper and herbs (or put in a jar and shake). Toss with salad greens. Sprinkle with nuts. Serve immediately. Serves 4-6

Spinach Strawberry Salad

8 ounces fresh spinach, washed and torn
1/2 pint strawberries, hulled and halved
1/2 cup toasted pecans (toast at 350 F for 3-4 minutes)
3/4 tablespoons of poppy seeds
Dressing (enough for 2 of the above salads):
1/3 cup wine or balsamic vinegar
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp dry mustard
1 1/2 tablespoons minced onion
1 cup olive or vegetable oil

To make dressing place vinegar, salt, sugar, mustard and onion in blender. Blend. With machine running drizzle in oil and blend until smooth. Will keep for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. Toss strawberries, spinach, pecans and poppy seeds with dressing.
Serves 4