Kohlrabi Fritters with Applesauce and Lemon-Honey Yogurt

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This week we got an absurdly sized kohlrabi in our CSA, much too big for a slaw and as we’d done a coconut curry earlier in the week our Kohlrabi Curry felt redundant. I looked online for a little inspiration, and found that people use kohlrabi in lieu of potatoes for latkes! (Or fritters for the less Upper West Sidey of my readers.)

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Fritters sounded phenomenal and not a big stretch for a Wednesday. And thus, the standard recipe:

  • 2 small bulbs kohlrabi
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Vegetable, canola, or olive oil for frying

Our kohlrabi was so big and juicy that we not only doubled the eggs, but also tripled the flour. We also had some fantastically aromatic dill that I chopped and added to the kohlrabi mixture.

Localfoods.about.com gives the following instructions, with a few little edits and tweakings of my own:

  1. Peel the kohlrabi or chop the skins off with a knife. Grate the kohlrabi on a large holes of a grater or shred it in a food processor. Put the grated kohlrabi onto some towels, twist them together, and squeeze out as much liquid as you can.
  2. Crack the egg (or eggs if you’re doubling) into a large bowl and beat it with a fork. Combine the kohlrabi and the egg and chopped dill. Sprinkle the mixture with the flour and salt and stir to combine thoroughly.
  3. Heat a generous layer of oil (about 1/4 inch deep) in a large frying pan or pot over medium-high heat until the pan is evenly very hot. A bit of batter dropped into the pan should sizzle immediately.
  4. Put generous spoonfuls of batter into the pan and flatten a bit with the back of the spoon. You should be able to fit about four fritters in a large pan at a time. Partially cover and cook until the fritters are browned on one side, 2 to 3 minutes, flip, partially cover again, and cook until they are tender and browned on both sides. Transfer the fritters to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve immediately.

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IMG_3186WIMG_3182hile the fritters were frying I chopped up some of our CSA apples and put them in a pot, covered them with water, and let them cook down into applesauce.  It’s bonkers to buy applesauce when it is this simple to make. And your local apple flavor will be massively more delicious than Mott’s, I promise! We also squeezed half a lemon on some Greek yogurt and added a swizzle of honey.

Dinner: Kohlrabi Fritters with Applesauce and Lemon-Honey Yogurt and a nice big share salad.IMG_3205

These Little Piggies Went to Market

I’ve said so before, but I think it’s worth re-mentioning that the Union Square Farmers Market is the best place in New York City on a Saturday.

We met our fabulous friends Sam and Shosh for a lovely wander through the stalls and to procure some ingredients for dinner (details to come). The full array of fall harvest was out, along with all of the Union Sq standards.

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It’s hard not to find a little something for everybody there: freshly baked breads, cheese straight from the goat, sheep, or cow, cozy colored yarns, treats, and for the vegetable-enamored, everything.

There are comical gourds of all shapes, sizes, colors, and degrees of bumpiness, all hailing autumn.

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And copious amounts of kale, which is the super-vegetable when it comes to cold weather! There should be piles of this stuff for weeks, and we can’t wait to make kale chips, kale juice, cooked kale, massaged kale, and kale-kale.

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IMG_7016And while we’re on the subject of juice: mmm wheatgrass.

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And HONEY. Though I am mostly-vegan, I am not terribly convinced that bees are being exploited. I am, however, fairly uncomfortable with the possibility that agave workers are, and thus, I have not forfeited my right to eat honey. We bought some lusciously spreadable raw wildflower honey at the market, thick and butter-like in its consistency. Raw honey is uncooked, so it preserves its pollen, and is less processed, which is the best excuse to spread it on everything.  (But I do promise to keep an ear out for sad bee complaints.)

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Rooftops gardens WILL CHANGE THE COURSE OF HISTORY! (And you’ll attract more naysayers with honey.)IMG_7081IMG_7085

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We found Jerusalem artichokes! I’ve been too nervous to cook them because I haven’t the slightest idea what to pair them with. My cookbooks are void of Jerusalem artichokes entirely and I’ve found zero support on the internet. It’s the purple kohlrabi incident all over again. But that might be a project for tonight.IMG_7207 IMG_7205IMG_7198

The advertising for the revolutionary juicy pears was just too compelling. So we bought a phenomenal pile of Asian pears.IMG_7084 (1)

I mean Don Draper couldn’t argue with that.

Ooh, and ground cherries. They’re a kind of cherry-tomato hybrid with a really zesty sweet flavor – described in this blurry sign as being pineapple-y.  And they come in their own natural wrappers, making them a perfect mid-stroll snack.

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IMG_7117See? Gourds.

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And they weren’t the only bumpy creatures out and about…IMG_7089 IMG_7088IMG_7099

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We walked away with carrots, bok choy, peppers – including a purple one – eggplant, greens, and more. Afterwards we jumped on the L and headed straight to Brooklyn to start stuffing dumplings for dinner.

Upside-Down Peach Cake

Upside Down Peach Cake (That's Right-Side Up)


One of my favorite recipes out of my mother’s kitchen is her Upside Down Peach Cake. This was one of those incredible desserts she just threw together last minute and pooh-poohed when people cooed over her. It wasn’t until very recently when she handed me the recipe and swore I could make it as well as she could, that I was convinced it’s actually a ridiculously easy – and crowd pleasing – dessert. It’s still not as good as when she makes it, but I’ve given it a whirl a few times and it’s getting there.

The nifty thing about this cake is that the batter is always the same, but you can change up the fruit depending on the season. We had a remarkable peach crop this year, so peach cake became a regular treat for dinner guests come late August. My mum does it with plums sometimes, or frozen fruit when she has unexpected dinner guests, often raspberries she has squirreled in the back of the freezer (which is awesome). I’ll definitely try it with apples over the upcoming weeks, and come December I’d like to try it with cranberries.

Donut Peaches

It is in no way vegan, but not everyone is as nitpicky as I am these days.

Ingredients:

  • 6 peaches
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • cinnamon and sugar
  • lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350º. Cream sugar and butter in a food processor.

Add eggs one at a time and then stir in flour, salt, and baking powder.  Feel free to add a little lemon zest to the batter if you’re looking for a little zing.Peaches!

Baking a Cake

SpringformPut batter in an 8″ round baking pan that has been buttered (a spring form is the best) and tuck a round-cut piece of wax paper in and butter again.

Cover the batter with desired fruit – in this case peaches – and amply sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.

Cut the Parchment

Squeeze some lemon over the top.

Bake for about an hour to an hour and a half, until the cake is firm and a toothpick comes out clean. (It should smell God-sent by this point.)

Place the ParchmentOnce it’s cooled flip the cake upside down – hence its name.

The peaches in this particular cake were so pretty on the top that we didn’t flip it – and you’re welcome not to – but traditionally the fruit sort of sinks in and it looks very clean on top when you turn it over. However you see fit.

And presto, Upside Down Peach (or Insert Fruit Here) Cake! Thanks, Mom!

Presto! Dessert.

Canned Laughter

Canning!Our CSA share has been positively monumental lately. So much so, that we’ve had too many tomatoes and peaches than we know what to do with. Winter, however, will not be quite so flush. Thus, we recently decided to start canning.

We’ve fantasized about canning our CSA share extras for the last few years, but the combination of our small kitchen and the daunting prospects of sterilization have always scared us off. This year we got the canning-mojo, and have since been canning up a storm. We mentioned in our post Ten Things To Do With Tomatoes that we’ve begun these procedures and that we’ve been tom-loaded, so we started with tomatoes, and have yet to stop.

Though we’ll go over some basics, if you need a more in-depth primer on how to proceed, check here.

Step 1. Sterilization

The number-one rule is to keep everything clean.  Start by cleaning your jars and lids well and then put them in a pot of boiling water.  We just leave them there until it’s time to fill them. They clank around a lot to let you know they’re getting nice and sterile.

Sterilizing Cans

Step 2. Prepare food

Doing tomatoes is really straightforward, and it’s the same for peaches. You don’t want the skins of either fruit, so drop them in boiling water for about a minute, then put them in an ice bath, after which the peels just fall away when you rub on them a little. Do this a few at a time and then place them in a colander above a bowl to save the juice. Once they’re all peeled, remove the core and cut into quarters.

Step 3. Can

Stuffing Those Toms InCarefully remove the sterilized jars and start adding the tomatoes, leaving about 1/2″ at the top (the “head space”). Use the reserved juices to cover the tomatoes, and remove as much air as possible by prodding with a chopstick or wood spoon.  Screw on the lids and “process” by placing the closed jars back in the boiling water for about 45 minutes to one hour (depending a bit on the size of the jar). Then just take out the jars and let stand for a few hours without moving them. The lids should make a very satisfying pop to let you know they’ve fully sealed.

Boiling CansThose are the basics!

We got a little fancy and roasted some tomatoes with garlic for some (mid-winter) summery sauces, which smelled heavenly.

Tomatoes with Garlic and Basil and Rosemary

Roasted Tomatoes

IMG_6429As we all know, peaches – much like tomatoes – become a sad-hybrid-pretend-fruit in the supermarket come late fall/early winter. Seriously, they taste like mealy soap. To combat this conundrum, we (mere days after tomato canning) canned a combination of yellow, white and donut peaches, which promises to be a heavenly treat come the frost.

Canning Peaches

And now we’re ready! We can pack up away and hibernate, not to be seen again until April or so. Our pantry (aka NYC closet) is stacked.

Canned Tomatoes

Canned Peaches

NYC Pantries (Closets)

Next up, apples.