Lunds & Byerlys REAL FOOD Fall 2022

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Lunds & Byerlys

Lunds & Byerlys




















real food Fall 2022

FALL 2022


Weekend Cooking Relax and enjoy the luxury of a slower-paced dinner

volume 18 number 3




Ramp up nutrition with more veggies in comforting pasta

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Quick-and-easy meals for any night of the week


Embrace their sweet and savory sides

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Those who love to cook make more than food in the kitchen. They make the most of every moment together—sharing stories, creating delicious flavors and simply enjoying the company of close friends. For more than 80 years, Le Creuset has been a part of these special times, and a colorful companion to all who savor food—and life—to the fullest. To learn more about Le Creuset’s classic French quality, and the joys of cooking with premium enameled cast iron, visit

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real food


fall 2022

Features 20 Weekend Cooking Relax and enjoy the luxury of a slower-paced dinner BY MOLLY STEVENS

30 Pasta and Plants Easily enjoy more healthy veggies when they’re mixed into everyone’s favorite pasta BY ROBIN ASBELL

40 Fall for Apples Embrace the sweet and savory sides of fall’s favorite fruit in recipes from main dishes to desserts BY MARY SUBIALK A

46 Keep It Simple Whip up these quick-and-easy meals any night of the week RECIPES BY JOANNA CISMARU

52 Every Kitchen Tells a Story Kwame Onwuachi dishes on his new cookbook, “My America: Recipes from a Young Black Chef” BY QUINTON SKINNER

Departments 4 Bites Portions for Pairs: A fresh take on cooking for two RECIPES BY ORLANDO MURRIN

6 Kitchen Skills Sharpen Your Knife Skills: From dicing onions to tackling tomatoes for a go-to sofrito sauce BY JASON ROSS

8 Contributors 17 Ingredient Go Nuts: Take meals to the next level with nutritious nuts BY K ATHERINE LAWLESS

18 Healthy Habits Food Surprises: Are you making the best choices? BY JEN WELPER

56 Pairings Crisp Sips: Hard cider brings a fresh taste to the table BY MARY SUBIALK A

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real food








VOLUME 18, NUMBER 3 Real Food magazine is published quarterly by Greenspring Media, LLC, 9401 James Ave. S, Suite 152, Bloomington, MN 55431, 612.371.5800, Fax 612.371.5801. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reprinted or otherwise reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Real Food is exclusively operated and owned by Greenspring Media, LLC. Printed in the USA. The pages between the covers of this magazine (except for any inserted material) are printed on paper made from wood fiber that was procured from forests that are sustainably managed to remain healthy, productive, and biologically diverse.

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Portions for Pairs

A fresh take on cooking for two


he kitchen is a communal space that brings groups of every size together. So recipes for cooking and connecting don’t need to be limited to serving four or more people, especially since there are a great number of two-person households that include couples, friends, and roommates. With pairs in mind, Orlando Murrin created a resource for those with a small home base to enjoy a meal designed for two—eliminating the need to halve or third recipes designed to serve more—or to have multiple days’ worth of leftovers. His cookbooks, “Two’s Company” and “Two’s Company Simple,” which releases in September, offer options to aid in cooking for relaxation, fun, and companionship. While cooking for two is different than making meals in large batches, Murrin gives step-bystep instructions and suggestions to keep home chefs aware of all their tasks and the overall goal. The books feature Murrin’s bevy of delectable recipes that bring pleasure and ease back to cooking for two, including the following duo from “Two’s Company.” —SAMANTHA JOHNSON

Chicken Saltimbocca with Crushed Herby Potatoes and Zucchini MAKES 2 SERVINGS

The Italians have a poetic touch when it comes to naming dishes—saltimbocca means literally “jump in the mouth.” Crisp sage leaves add a pretty finish to this dish, and yes, they are meant to be eaten. The green vegetable can be varied according to the season. –orlando murrin For the Chicken Saltimbocca and Zucchini



4 2 1 1


About 12 fresh sage leaves A small handful of other fresh herbs, such as parsley and chives chicken breast fillets, skinless and boneless prosciutto slices tablespoons butter tablespoon olive oil zucchini, cut into batons, or 5½ ounces asparagus or green beans, trimmed garlic clove, thinly sliced

¾ cup chicken stock, dry vermouth, or white wine, or a mixture About 2 teaspoons lemon juice For the Crushed Herby Potatoes

9 ounces small red or white potatoes, scrubbed and halved (about 2 handfuls) 2 tablespoons butter A small handful of fresh herbs, such as parsley and chives, chopped

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Classic Risotto with Bacon and Peas MAKES 2 SERVINGS

Risotto is one of the best storecupboard standbys, enabling you essentially to make a gourmet dinner out of rice, stock, Parmesan, and whatever comes to hand. I think of it as a “Monday meal,” made with fresh chicken stock after Sunday’s roast. Here, I flavor the risotto with bacon and peas, but check your fridge for enticing scraps. I usually grate my Parmesan in a food processor, but to finish a risotto, I risk my knuckles on a Microplane grater, which gives an attractive snowy effect. –orlando murrin 1¾ cups chicken stock A splash of olive oil 2½ tablespoons butter, divided 2¾ ounces bacon, chopped, or cubed pancetta or lardons 1 small onion, chopped 1 garlic clove, crushed ½ cup (heaping) risotto rice About 31⁄3 ounces/1⁄3 cup (1 small glass) white wine or dry sherry

1. Pick out the 4 to 6 most handsome sage leaves and chop the rest finely. While you are at it, chop the other herbs. If you are making the potatoes, chop the herbs for these now, too, and set aside separately. Slice each chicken breast in half horizontally, to form 4 cutlets, cover with a sheet of plastic wrap, and bash each with a rolling pin until they are an even 3⁄8-inch thick. Dab the cutlets dry with a piece of paper towel, season all over with salt and pepper, and sprinkle the cut sides with half the chopped sage. Press the prosciutto slices on the cut, sage-flecked sides, tucking the edges under on themselves to follow the shape. Put on a plate and refrigerate. 2. For the crushed herby potatoes, put them in a small pan, add water to cover by about ¾ inch, salt generously, and boil for

1 bay leaf ½ cup frozen peas, no need to defrost A small bunch of fresh parsley, chopped 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan, plus extra to finish

12 to 15 minutes, until soft but not falling apart. Drain. Put the butter into the pan, plus the chopped herbs and seasoning, then stir in the potatoes, squashing each one lightly with a wooden spoon or spatula so it breaks up and absorbs the buttery herbs, but without mashing. Check the seasoning, cover, and keep warm. Cook the zucchini batons in a pan of salted, boiling water till just tender—3 to 5 minutes depending on size—then drain and keep warm. 3. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and when shimmering, add the sage leaves. Cook for just 30 to 40 seconds till they darken and stiffen, then transfer with tongs to a small plate lined with paper towels. Sprinkle with salt and set aside. Now add the chicken to the pan, prosciutto-side down. Cook for 2 minutes until a narrow

1. Put the chicken stock in a pan and bring to a boil, then turn off the heat and cover to keep hot. Heat the oil and half the butter in a medium saucepan and add the bacon, onion, and garlic. Cook gently for 5 minutes, till soft but not brown, then stir in the rice. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes until the rice is slightly translucent and starting to turn gold, then stir in the wine and bay leaf and bubble until the wine has been absorbed (1 to 2 minutes). 2. Set the timer for 18 minutes and add enough stock to cover the rice. Season. From now on, aim to keep the rice covered by a thin film of stock at all times, and at a gentle simmer. Stir frequently and add more stock as necessary. At 18 minutes, stir in the peas and bring back to the boil. At 19 minutes, check the rice is tender—it should still have a slight bite to it—and adjust the seasoning. Cook for another minute, if necessary, then turn off the heat. Remove the bay leaf, if you wish; though if you leave it in, it will bring good fortune to the person to whom it is served. 3. Pause a couple of minutes—time to set the table. Then fold in the parsley, grated Parmesan, and remaining butter using a rubber spatula. Transfer to heated bowls, dust with extra Parmesan, and serve. Cook’s Note: Italian cooks know that after stirring a risotto for a solid 20 minutes, it is essential to leave it sitting undisturbed in the pan for 5 more before tucking in “so the ingredients get to know one another.”

white line appears around the top edge, check the underneath is bronzed, then flip over for 2 minutes to cook through. Transfer to a plate and keep warm. 4. Add the garlic and remaining sage to the frying pan and sizzle for 30 seconds until fragrant, then pour in the stock. Bubble the sauce for 3 to 5 minutes until reduced by about half and slightly thickened. Reduce the heat and whisk in the butter in 2 pieces. Then when it has melted, add lemon juice and seasoning to taste. Swirl in the zucchinis. 5. Use tongs to arrange the seasoned zucchinis on serving plates, top with the saltimboccas, drizzle with sauce, and top each with a few crisp sage leaves. Serve the potatoes alongside. n

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kitchen skills

Sharpen Your Knife Skills From dicing onions to tackling tomatoes, hone your skills and use the vegetables in a go-to Spanish sofrito. BY JASON ROSS


ometimes without even knowing what I am making for dinner, I find myself dicing an onion. It is central to so many dishes that it is the place where dinner begins. With that in mind, let’s run through a little knife skills check-up for dicing a variety of vegetables you probably already have at home, including the onion. Then, use those sharpened knife skills to make Spanish sofrito, which is a flavor base that, like the diced onion, is the first step in so many meals. The next time you are not sure what’s for dinner, just start dicing and see what happens. Make sofrito into your go-to flavor base and use it to make meals all week long. This fragrant tomato-based blend of herbs, spices, and vegetables is used to season countless dishes. Add it to cooked beans with a little broth for more delicious beans. Add chicken and seafood to the rice recipe here and you have the basics of a classic paella, minus the saffron. Any brothy soup would be improved with sofrito. Cook ground beef with sofrito and a little wine and water, and you have the makings of a great meat sauce. Or add roux and you might be inspired to make all types of gumbos. The uses for sofrito are long and plentiful. Who doesn’t like more flavor?


Red Rice Flavored with Sofrito MAKES 4 TO 6 SERVINGS

Here is a recipe for flavorful red rice to show off all your knife skills. Start by making a sofrito base to flavor and color the rice. Then crank up the heat a little for a brown and crusty bite where the rice sticks to the pot. 2 1 2 1 ½ 1½ 2

tablespoons olive oil onion, diced small cloves garlic, smashed and minced rib celery, diced small red pepper diced small teaspoons salt medium tomatoes, diced small

1. Using a medium-sized pot with a tight-fitting lid, heat the oil on medium-low heat, and add the onions, garlic, celery, and red pepper. Sprinkle in the salt and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes stirring occasionally until the vegetables are softened, translucent, and just starting to brown. Look for

½ cup canned crushed tomatoes, with juice 1½ cups long grain white rice 2 cups water ½ tablespoon unsalted butter (optional)

browning around the edges of the pan. 2. Add the tomatoes and cook for another 10 to 15 minutes, scraping up any brown bits stuck to the edges of the pan. Look for a jammy consistency with most of the liquid from the tomatoes cooked out and the edges of the pan starting to brown again.

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Small Diced Vegetables Here is a review of small dicing some common vegetables that you can use in a great variety of meals, and they are part of the recipe for sofrito used in the red rice. The focus here is small dice but you can use the same technique for any size: Small is ¼-inch dice; medium is ½-inch; and large is ¾-inch.


3. Then add the crushed tomatoes and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes until the tomato sauce shifts color from bright red to brick red, and the moisture in the sauce has mostly evaporated, thickening the sofrito. 4. After all the cooking, browning, and reducing, this is a good time to taste the sofrito and add salt if needed for your tastes. The sofrito can be made and stored in a covered container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator, or even made in larger batches and used for multiple preparations throughout the week. 5. Stir the rice into the sofrito and coat all the grains with sofrito. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook the rice stirring for 1 to 2 minutes until very lightly toasted and the pan has gotten hot. 6. Gently pour in the water and bring to a

boil. Do not stir. This helps to get a little crust on the bottom of the pan. As it comes to a boil add the optional butter for a richer, slightly wetter feeling rice or omit for sharper flavor. Cover and lower heat to lowest setting. Cook for 20 minutes. 7. Turn off heat, and leave covered on the burner for another 10 minutes. Uncover and serve. Make sure to use a wood spoon and scrape off the crust, with a bit of crust for each guest. 8. The rice is best served immediately or kept warm in a rice cooker, slow cooker, or an oven set to 180°F and served within a few hours. Nutrition (per serving without optional butter): Calories: 240, Fat: 5g (Sat: .5 g), Cholesterol: 0 mg, Sodium: 660 mg, Carb: 44g, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 5g

1. Using a chef’s knife, cut the onion in half from root to sprout end. 2. With onion cut side down on a cutting board, trim off the sprout end (leave the root end intact) and peel the halves. The root end will keep the onion from splitting and falling apart and will be useful toward the end of cutting as a safe place to keep your fingers while you finish cutting. 3. Make 3 to 4 horizontal cuts, about ¼-inch apart, from the trimmed sprout end to the root end, stopping your cuts a little shy of the end, and not going all the way through, leaving the root end intact. Then make similar size cuts straight down to the cutting board from sprout end to root stopping a little shy of the root end. 4. Finally, make ¼-inch cuts across the grain of the onion and through the horizontal and vertical cuts. Use the root end as a resting place for your fingers as you get toward the end of your cuts. Then discard the root end after you are done with your dice. Continued on page 8

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Robin Asbell spreads the

Tomato 1. Use a paring knife to dig out the core of the tomato. 2. With a serrated knife, cut it into ¼-inch planks across the equator, like you were slicing tomatoes for a burger, then into ¼-inch strips, and then finally crosswise, into dice. Tip: Wherever possible try to run your knife blade against the flesh of the tomato instead of the skin; it’s less likely to slip and will dig in more easily.

Celery 1. With a chef’s knife, make long slices all the way down the length of the stalk, roughly ¼-inch apart. 2. Then, simply cut across the grain and width of the celery, again ¼-inch cuts, to make small dice.

Garlic Garlic can be done similarly to onions, but can also be handled in a less time consuming way with good results, especially in long cooking preparations like sofrito, where the garlic will essentially “melt.” 1. Use the flat side of your chef’s knife laid on top of a peeled garlic clove, (or even better use a vegetable cleaver if you have one), and with the palm of your hand give the flat knife against the garlic a good thwack, smashing the garlic into the cutting board. If that seems too aggressive or scary, you can also simply press down firmly into the flat knife, by using your body weight, and again flatten the garlic into your cutting board. 2. With a rocking motion, use the knife to mince the garlic into small pieces. This method is not as precise as a proper dice, but it is fast, fun, and effective.

Bell Pepper 1. Trim off the tops and bottoms of the peppers and scoop out the seeds and white pith. 2. Split the pepper in half lengthwise from stem-end to bottom and lay the two halves flat on the cutting board. 3. Cut into ¼-inch strips, and then across the strips into ¼-inch small dice. Give the trimmed tops and bottoms a rough dice, too. They won’t be as neat and tidy, but it’s best to use all the edible parts. n

word about delicious whole, real foods through her work as an author, cooking teacher, and private chef. She is the author of “Plant-Based Meats,” “Great Bowls of Food,” “Big Vegan,” “Gluten-Free Pasta,” and more.

Terry Brennan is a p h oto g r a p h e r b a s e d i n Minneapolis , Minnesota. C l i e n t s i n c l u d e Ta r g e t , General Mills, Land O’Lakes, and Hormel. “Working with Real Food is a highlight—I love working with the creative team and, of course, sampling the wonderful recipes.”



began her food career on the other side of the camera, cooking at the renowned New French Café in Minneapolis. Today her work as a stylist is in demand at corporations including Heinz, Target, and General Mills, as well as with many magazines. Her experience as a chef helps her make food as appealing on the page as it is on the plate.

Jason Ross is a chef consultant for restaurants and hotels, developing menus and concepts for multiple high profile properties. He grew up and trained in New York City but now calls St. Paul, Minnesota, home. He currently teaches the next generation of chefs at Saint Paul College Culinary School.

Quinton Skinner is the author of fiction and nonfiction books, as well as work in numerous national publications including Glamour, Experience Life, Huffington Post, Delta Sky, and American Theatre. He was senior editor of Minnesota Monthly and METRO magazine, and is the co-founder of Logosphere Storysmiths.

Molly Stevens is a cooking instructor and the author of several award-winning cookbooks, including “All About Dinner,” “All About Braising,” and “All About Roasting.” She has been named Cooking Teacher of the Year by both Bon Appétit and IACP. Her recipes and articles have appeared regularly in a number of national publications, and she is a cohost of the Everything Cookbooks podcast.

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Lunds & Byerlys


Bloomington: 952-896-0092 Burnsville: 952-892-5600 Chanhassen: 952-474-1298 Eagan: 651-686-9669 Eden Prairie: 952-525-8000 Edina 50th Street: 952-926-6833 France Avenue: 952-831-3601 Golden Valley: 763-544-8846 Maple Grove: 763-416-1611 Minneapolis Downtown: 612-379-5040 Nokomis: 612-729-4000 Northeast: 612-548-3820 Uptown: 612-825-2440 Minnetonka Glen Lake: 952-512-7700 Highway 7: 952-935-0198 Ridgedale: 952-541-1414 Navarre: 952-471-8473 Plymouth: 763-268-1624 Prior Lake: 952-440-3900 Richfield: 612-861-1881 Roseville: 651-633-6949 St. Cloud: 320-252-4112 St. Louis Park: 952-929-2100 St. Paul Downtown: 651-999-1600 Highland Park: 651-698-5845 Wayzata: 952-476-2222 White Bear Lake: 651-653-0000 Woodbury: 651-999-1200 SHOP ONLINE CATERING 952-897-9800 L&B EXTRAS Get extra offers and tools to make shopping easier. DOWNLOAD OUR APP STAY CONNECTED Follow us on social media and sign up for our e-newsletter. FOOD QUESTIONS? Call our FoodE experts: 952-548-1400 REAL FOOD COMMENTS Aaron Sorenson: 952-927-3663

A Merchant’s Merchant I

have recently found myself reflecting quite a bit on our family business history as it was 100 years ago this year my grandfather, Russell T. Lund Sr., began his career in the grocery business. It’s a story that could have been quite different if Russell had followed through on his initial plans when he boarded a train in Amery, Wisconsin, in the summer of 1922 to head to Minneapolis. He was 18 years old at the time and came here to find a summer job with the hopes of earning money to attend college in the fall. He took a part-time job in the cheese and cracker department at Hove’s at Lagoon and Hennepin avenues in Uptown and immediately displayed a merchant tenacity. Just three months later, Tom Cordalis, owner of the cheese and cracker department, offered him a fulltime position, and within a year Russell was offered a 10 percent partnership in the department. Back in those days each department within the store was often separately owned. Russell expanded the perishable business by adding dairy, produce, and meat to his partnership mix within the Hove’s store. His entrepreneurial drive would also show up in popped and packaged popcorn he created under the Hove’s brand label. In the 1930s, he took what he called a sabbatical to move to California with his wife, Rhoda, and young son, Russ Jr., to launch a new popcorn company called Red E Popt. They experienced so much success they had to relocate and expand their production facility three times within the first two years. While business was booming, they always had a desire to eventually return to Minnesota. Mr. Cordalis and the Hove’s team were quite proud of what Russell had accomplished in California, but they missed his merchant talent and drive at their store. The discussions of his return resulted in Russell buying into full partnership with Mr. Cordalis and building a new store to replace the existing Hove’s in Uptown. Russell and Rhoda sold the popcorn business, returned home, and used those profits to purchase property at Lake Street and Hennepin Avenue. In 1939, a new Hove’s opened at that site—and it’s where our Uptown store is still located today. Russell was a merchant’s merchant. His immense pride and passion for high-quality products and immaculate store conditions were always on full display. Sharply dressed and donning an apron, Russell would often start his mornings by sweeping the sidewalks, unfurling the awnings, and ensuring the store’s displays all demonstrated his pride of ownership. He also cared deeply for his staff and the community. His quiet and impactful acts of kindness included everything from providing financial assistance to staff members in need to touching moments like when he arranged for a cashier to have the rare opportunity to call her son in Vietnam during the war. His and Rhoda’s success and connections meant nothing if they did not somehow provide those around them a path to better their own lives. His entrepreneurial spirit, merchant talents, and compassionate leadership set the foundation for the values our company strongly upholds to this day. As a third-generation member of the extended L&B family, I appreciate all of the family in our business. In fact, 30 percent of our staff have or had family members within our company, and 10 percent are second-, third-, or fourth-generation family members within our company’s extended L&B family. Because of their own merchant talents, passion for service, and compassion for one another, we have carried on and further defined our collective vision for what a grocery store can be and should be for the communities we serve. Sincerely,

Tres Lund

president and ceo real food 9

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Guide to Minnesota Apples Honeycrisp Extremely crisp and juicy with a balanced, sweet-tart flavor. Best eaten fresh, used in baking or for applesauce. (Available late September.)

First Kiss This apple is lightly tart and aromatic with a super crisp texture. Eat out of hand or add to a snack tray or salad. (Available mid-August.)

Zestar This apple has a sweet-tart taste with hints of brown sugar. The light, crisp texture results in a nice crunch. Best enjoyed on its own. (Available early September.)

SweeTango This apple is crisp and sweet with a lively touch of citrus and honey and a subtle hint of spice. Best eaten fresh. (Available early September.)

RiverBelle Crisp and juicy, the RiverBelle is equal parts sweet and acidic, which results in a delicate flavor. Best eaten fresh. (Available in August.)

McIntosh This bright red apple has a rich flavor and tender texture that softens when cooked. Enjoy in applesauce, pies or on its own. (Available late September.)

Haralson This firm, crisp apple has a juicy, tart flavor and red color. Perfect for eating fresh or making pies or applesauce. (Available late September or early October.)

Pazazz This late-season apple has a sweet yet tart flavor with a huge crunch. It’s delicious used in pies or other baking. (Available late October.)

Sweet Sixteen This late-season apple is rose red in color with a sugary taste and fine texture. Best enjoyed in applesauce or eating fresh. (Available late September.)

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Lunds & Byerlys

recipe box

Sweet and Savory

Apple Dishes Apples are the star of the show in these simple, delicious dishes that are perfect for fall.

Gorgonzola Apple Slaw with Almonds

Brown Butter Ravioli with Walnuts and Apples



Sweet Honeycrisp apples and savory Gorgonzola cheese shine in this delicious dish.

This simple pasta dinner comes together in minutes! It’s delicious served with a glass of red wine and a crisp green salad.

1 ¼ ½ ¼ 3 6 6 ¼ 4 ½

cup mayonnaise cup apple cider or apple brandy teaspoon sea salt teaspoon freshly ground pepper medium Honeycrisp apples, cored and cut into julienne strips cups chopped kale cups shredded red cabbage cup chopped shallots ounces Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled cup sliced almonds

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, apple cider, salt, and pepper. 2. Add apple strips to mayonnaise mixture and toss to coat. 3. In a large bowl, combine kale, cabbage, and shallots. Add apple mixture and Gorgonzola and toss to coat. 4. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with almonds.

1 ¼ ⅓ 1

(8-ounce) package refrigerated cheese-filled ravioli cup (1⁄2 stick) butter cup chopped walnuts apple, chopped Parmesan cheese, for serving

1. Cook ravioli according to package directions; drain and set aside. 2. In a skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Continue to cook, swirling occasionally until the butter is brown and smells nutty. 3. Add the chopped walnuts and chopped apple to the pan. Cook 2 to 3 minutes. 4. Top ravioli with butter mixture. Serve topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. n real food 11

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Lunds & Byerlys

meal solutions


Skillet Meals A one-skillet dinner is a weeknight winner!


hese dinners come together quickly, they’re so satisfying, and all the ingredients go in one pan for quick prep and easy cleanup. What’s better than that? Here are three of our favorite weeknight skillet dinners to keep your family full and happy all week long.


1 pound lean ground beef or ground turkey 1 (16-ounce) package spaghetti 1 (24-ounce) jar L&B Pasta Sauce 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish Grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish 1. In a large oven-safe skillet, brown ground beef or turkey over medium-high heat. 2. Add spaghetti and 5 cups water to the skillet. Cook for 10 to 12 minutes, until most of the water has been absorbed and the pasta is tender. (Do not drain the small amount of water that remains in the pan.) 3. Add L&B Pasta Sauce and cook for an additional 5 minutes. 4. Set oven to broil. 5. Top the spaghetti with shredded mozzarella and broil for 2 to 3 minutes, until the cheese is melted, bubbling and starting to brown. 6. Garnish with fresh parsley and grated Parmesan cheese. Serve with a fresh sliced baguette from our bakery.


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One-Skillet Mexican Chicken and Rice MAKES 6 SERVINGS | PREP TIME: 45 MINUTES

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided 2 medium chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch chunks 1 red bell pepper, diced 1 yellow bell pepper, diced 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed 1 cup frozen, canned, or fresh corn 1 (8-ounce) can diced green chilies

1 cup salsa 1 cup white rice 2 cups (a 15-ounce can) vegetable broth ¼ cup water 1 teaspoon cumin 1 teaspoon chili powder Salt and pepper, to taste 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese Sliced green onions and cilantro, for topping

1. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat. 2. Add diced chicken and cook until browned on each side, then remove from skillet. 3. Add bell peppers and the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and cook 5 to 7 minutes, until softened. They don’t have to be cooked completely. 4. Return chicken to skillet, along with black beans, corn, green chilies, salsa, rice, vegetable broth, water, cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper.

5. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer 15 to 17 minutes, stirring often, or until rice has absorbed all of the liquid. 6. Top with cheese and either remove from heat and top with lid, or if your skillet is ovenproof, melt cheese under the broiler. 7. Serve topped with green onions and cilantro.



Baked Buffalo Chicken Pasta Skillet MAKES 4 SERVINGS | PREP TIME: 45 MINUTES

10 2 3 2 2 6 ¼ 1 2

ounces rigatoni, cooked and drained tablespoons butter cloves garlic, minced tablespoons all-purpose flour cups milk ounces cream cheese, softened cup hot sauce tablespoon dry ranch seasoning cups L&B Ready To Heat Pulled Chicken (available in our deli) ¼ cup freshly chopped chives 1 cup shredded white cheddar cheese

1. Heat oven to 350°F. 2. In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Drain and return to pot. 3. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add flour and whisk to combine. Cook 1 minute. 4. Add milk and whisk until smooth. Simmer until thickened, about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. 5. Add cream cheese and stir until melted and smooth. 6. Add hot sauce and ranch seasoning and stir until combined. 7. Add cooked pasta, chicken, and chives and stir until pasta is completely coated. 8. Top with cheddar cheese and bake for 15 minutes, until cheese is melted. (Broil for about 5 minutes to get the cheese golden and slightly crispy.) Garnish with chives and serve. n real food 13

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L U N D S & B Y E R LY S



Meet your new favorite snack! This better-for-you treat is made from nutrient-rich fruit that is picked at the peak of ripeness and then frozen to capture the natural sweetness. Once frozen, the fruit is hyper-dried to lock in flavor and nutrition before it’s immersed in rich, sustainable dark chocolate. These gluten-free treats are made with clean ingredients and come in perfect snack-size portions for on-the-go enjoyment. Flavors include coconut melts, banana, and raspberry.




The 3 Bear Oats brand was born from its founder, Therese’s, love of cooking and her many years in Europe. After relocating to Minnesota, she began experimenting with steel-cut oats and was inspired by the Danish concept of hygge (hoog-uh), which warms hearts and homes with an emphasis on relaxation and indulgence. Her wholesome sweet and savory artisan grain bowls celebrate the healthy Northern spirit and use the bounty of local farms. Varieties include alpine trek—dark chocolate, peanut butter, and banana chips; orso Toscano—a mushroom-leek mix with Parmesan; and petite Canadienne—bacon and cheese with a touch of maple syrup. Keep these 100 percent compostable bowls on hand in the freezer for a healthy breakfast, filling snack, or satisfying side dish that you can enjoy in minutes.




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In 2011, Lonely Olive Tree Organics founder Dimitri Kallianis, a chef and restaurateur, traveled to his father’s birthplace of Sparta, Greece, on a quest to bring his family’s historic and unique single-origin olive oil to America. Now you can enjoy their pure organic extravirgin olive oil in your kitchen. The mountain-grown olives are harvested each winter at their purest state and when the fruit is unripe. The olives are then pressed within 12 hours of picking. This ancient method of early harvesting and first cold pressing gives the olive oil a natural green color, complexity, aroma, and flavor that stands out. Try Lonely Olive Tree olive oil in your favorite recipes.

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What’s better than a brownie? Our L&B Iced Picnic Brownies are decadent, rich, and oh-so delicious. Our L&B bakers use three kinds of premium chocolate— semi-sweet, milk, and bittersweet—to create a superthick, delicious batter. We bake the brownies in an 8-inch square pan that’s easily transportable and resealable. Then, we slather the brownies with a thick, rich, and fudgy chocolate icing. Whether you’re heading to a family gathering, enjoying a picnic, or curling up at home, our L&B Iced Picnic Brownies are sure to be a crowd pleaser!



Gluten-free baking doesn’t have to be boring! Mama Stoen’s Gluten-Free Baking Mixes take the treats you know and love—think carrot cake, angel food cake, banana bread, and chocolate cake—and carefully craft them without gluten ingredients or preservatives so everyone can enjoy delicious baked goods without sacrificing taste, texture, or variety. This is very important to Mama Stoen—also known as Christine Stoen—who began creating these mixes in 2009 after she and her daughter were diagnosed with celiac disease and needed to make changes to their diets. Now you can enjoy their delicious recipes at home.



Explore flavors from around the world with our L&B International Spices. Culinary experts make this impressive collection using strict standards to ensure the highest quality and best flavors. Try the curry madras—an earthy, fragrant spice blend that’s hotter than standard curry powder—for fish, veggies, salad dressings, or tuna salad. Or give garam masala—a rich, all-purpose Indian seasoning—a spot in your fish, pork, or poultry routine. Looking for a little heat? Piri Piri Portuguese seasoning works well on chicken, veggies, and steak. This spice collection also includes fines herbes, Italian, guacamole, Mediterranean, herbes de Provence, French garden blend, ras el hanout, Swedish meatball, chile cilantro, Sriracha, harissa, Chinese five spice, barbacoa, and za’atar. Our top-of-the-line collection has everything you need—and you won’t find these anywhere else! real food 15

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Shop Online. Pickup at All Locations. C R E AT E Y O U R L I S T A N D S H O P T H O U S A N D S O F I T E M S S H O P. L U N D S A N D B Y E R LY S . C O M SCAN TO SHOP

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Cashews It’s no surprise that cashews are the most commonly used alternative for making vegan cheese or “nut cheese.” The nut’s buttery flavor lends itself perfectly to vegan cheese spreads or vegan butters. Behind almonds, cashews are the second-best nut in providing magnesium, plus their high levels of iron and vitamin K may be good for people who suffer from anemia or blood clotting issues. Cashews and chicken are a great protein pairing to create the basis for many dishes. Ginger and cashew chicken, cashew and chicken noodles, a cashew chicken salad, or a cashew chicken casserole are all easy meals that the whole family can enjoy.

Go Nuts! Take your cooking to the next level with the nutrient-rich flavors of nuts. BY K ATHERINE LAWLESS



uts are one of the most versatile superfoods. With distinct flavors and a satisfying crunch, these nutritionally rich foods are not only perfect for curbing your salty snack cravings, but their assortment of vitamins may be linked to a range of health benefits. If you’re looking for a plant-based protein source or to swap out your usual snacks with something healthier, nuts are a delicious, low-effort way to add nutrients into your diet. Each nut has its own benefits. The vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids in almonds and walnuts can help with inflammation. Cashews are relatively high in zinc, while pistachios are a good source of potassium, a mineral that helps regulate your blood pressure. Nuts are also lauded as a good source of protein. Many commonly eaten nuts have between 4 and 6 grams of protein and about 160 calories per ounce. To put that in perspective, an ounce of chicken has 8 grams of protein at 68 calories. Nuts are nutrient-dense, but also calorie-dense, so they’re not a perfect substitute for meat. Remember that moderation is key,

and adding a serving (11⁄2 ounces or about a handful) of nuts into your meal can be all the health boost you need. Baked, seasoned nuts and nut trail mixes are just the tip of the iceberg. Top off your ice cream or salad with nuts, bake them into your breads, or mix them into your rice dishes. That delicious nutty flavor complements a variety of meats, cheeses, pastas, and your favorite desserts. Almonds Beyond being a popular snack (and made into plant milk), almonds are also the tree nut with the highest levels of protein, fiber, calcium, and vitamin E. The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry published a study that found that regular almond consumption may contribute to lower risks of cardiovascular disease and combat inflammation. Add almonds to your dinner’s side dishes by pairing baked slivered almonds with vegetables such as green beans and asparagus, or indulge your sweet tooth with almond cookies, almond bars, or shortbread.

Pistachios According to a study published by the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, pistachios contain the most plant sterols or phytosterols of all commonly eaten nuts and seeds. Phytosterols are naturally occurring compounds found in cell membranes that are structurally similar to your body’s cholesterol. Because they’re so similar, your body will absorb them alongside cholesterol, lowering your blood’s cholesterol levels and supporting heart health. Pistachios are also a great source of potassium, which supports digestion and regulating blood pressure. You can introduce pistachios into your diet by spreading a pistachio pesto blend on sandwiches or pizzas or mixing it into a pasta dish. For an extra healthy meal, sprinkle pistachios on top of beets or roasted carrots. Walnuts The Romans called walnuts Juglans regia, meaning “Jupiter’s mighty acorn,” possibly because these nuts were associated with the diets of Persian royalty. Despite their regal place in history, walnuts are frequently enjoyed as a simple snack. Unlike many other nuts, walnuts are often eaten plain, rather than salted or roasted, therefore not compromising their antioxidant properties with other added ingredients or processes. Walnuts also contain a relatively high amount of omega-3 fatty acids, a healthier fat that is linked to improved cardiovascular health. Walnuts are a great companion in your morning oatmeal and for your favorite desserts. Enjoy a coffee and walnut cake with brunch or a walnut brownie, walnut toffee bar, or walnut pumpkin bread as an after-dinner treat. n

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healthy habits

Food Surprises Are you making the best choices to get the nutrients you’re looking for? BY JEN WELPER, EXECUTIVE WELLNESS CHEF, MAYO CLINIC HEALTHY LIVING PROGRAM


here is a lot of information about food out there, and we might find unusual truths about our food choices and their nutrition values. Understandably, dietitians suggest foods because they are good for you, and they might also be easier to eat than some other options. But there are some surprises that

might have you looking to different food choices. Here are some tips to keep in mind.

Looking for Potassium? You might have heard that if your potassium is low, you should eat a banana. That is a quick and easy way to get potassium, but eating a potato might be more effective, however

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not as efficient. A medium banana has 422 milligrams of potassium whereas a medium potato has 897 milligrams.

Seeking Vitamin C? When people are looking for a good source of vitamin C, they typically gravitate toward grabbing an orange—but would you be surprised if I suggested you reach for a red bell pepper instead? One medium red bell pepper has about 152 milligrams of vitamin C compared to about 51 milligrams in an orange.

Protein Power Which has more protein—a protein shake or a 4-ounce chicken breast? It can depend on what’s in the shake—skim milk, non-fat plain yogurt or Greek yogurt, protein powder, and water—but the average protein powder has about 21 grams of protein and a 4-ounce chicken breast weighs in at 25 grams of protein. While it’s easy to get a quick protein dose in a shake versus cooking a chicken breast, if you plan ahead—or pick up cooked, ready-toeat chicken—you’ll get a little more in the bird.


The Halo Effect We tend to give certain items what we call the halo effect. My favorite example of this is peanut butter. Who doesn’t love peanut butter? Guests and patients often remind me that it is healthy and high in protein. Although that is partially true, it is also important to remember that it doesn’t mean you can have ¼ cup of it on your toast or your sandwich or mix it into a cookie recipe and that means it’s good for you. Everything should be consumed in moderation. Ideally, 1 tablespoon of peanut butter would be good for a serving, but the container lists 2 tablespoons as a serving. To put this in perspective, the average slice of bread is about 100 calories and if you add 2 tablespoons of peanut butter to that you are at 290 calories just in bread and peanut butter—and if you have two of those to satisfy your hunger, you are at 580 calories.

Don’t Go Too Nuts Be mindful of the amount of nuts you are consuming as it’s easy to overeat! A serving of peanuts, for example, is typically 1 ounce, which can vary from 28 to 40 peanuts, which is 180 to 200 calories. If you mindlessly much down half a can of dry roasted peanuts, that would make a huge difference in your calorie intake.

For the Love of Cheese Cheese is a great source of calcium, which our bodies need—especially our little ones—and it is an easy go-to snack. You can add it to just about anything to make it better. As an adult, it is often easier to consume cheese than a serving of skim milk. (In terms of calcium, a 1-ounce serving of cheddar cheese has 204 mg calcium and 9 grams of fat compared to an 8-ounce serving of skim milk’s 325 milligrams calcium and 0 fat.) However, a 1-ounce serving of cheese doesn’t seem like much—but that is supposed to be the serving size—so it is important to be aware of the quantity consumed in a sitting. This isn’t meant to keep you from eating cheese, but as a way to try to keep your servings in check, try consuming varieties with a pungent flavor so a little goes a long way and you are satisfied. A nice sharp cheddar or Parmesan should do the trick.

Favorite Fruit Let’s not forget my favorite fruit—avocado. It is a great healthy fat choice that can be added to just about anything. What makes a fat a healthy fat is where it is derived from, how it is digested, and the effects it has on the body when metabolized. Avocado is plant based, as is olive oil, versus butter and lard, which are animal-derived fats that raise cholesterol levels. Plant-based fats (the healthy fats) will actually lower your cholesterol levels. Here is the tricky part, though: A serving size is of a large avocado. To put it into perspective, if you even used half an avocado on your sandwich along with two pieces of bread and your protein with some vegetables, your sandwich alone is at 12 grams of fat without adding anything else or calculated any fat in your protein. So, though it is healthier, you still don’t want to consume too much fat of either source. If you add avocado to your meal, try not to add another fat like cheese; use the avocado as the fat in the meal. It would be wasteful to throw away the rest of that avocado if you can only have of it as a serving, so plan how you can use it with other meals or snacks. I like to add avocado to salsa verde. It thins it out a bit and preserves it for a few more days, so I can add a little bit of it to almost everything. Whip up a batch yourself with the recipe at right and enjoy my favorite fruit, too. n


1 2 1⁄8 1 1 1

avocado Roma tomatoes red onion tablespoon cilantro garlic clove lime wedge Pinch salt Ground black pepper, to taste

1. Cube the avocado. Chop the tomatoes, onion, and cilantro. Mince the garlic. Place all ingredients in a medium bowl and stir to combine. 2. Squeeze the juice from the lime into the bowl. Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste. Cook’s Note: This salsa is best served immediately after it is prepared. It does keep overnight, but you may want to scoop off the browning layer from the avocados before eating the next day. You may use ¼ teaspoon of powdered garlic in place of fresh. Nutrition per 2-tablespoon serving: 41 calories, 3g fat, 0g saturated fat, 1g protein, 3g carbohydrates, 1g sugar, 2g fiber, 62mg sodium

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Cooking Relax and enjoy the luxury of a slower-paced dinner.




ne surefire way to make the most of a fall weekend is to cook something that might not fit into your busy workweek. Free from the demands of weekday schedules, our Saturdays and Sundays can offer the luxury of setting a stew to simmer midafternoon, spice-rubbing a whole chicken in the morning while the coffee brews, slowcooking short ribs until their meaty aromas fill the house, or maybe cooking up whole grains and legumes to create a healthy vegetarian supper. Sometimes weekend cooking might mean date night at home, in which case you’ll want something simple yet reliable, like fish baked in parchment. Whatever your weekend vibe, we’ve got the recipes to make it a good one.

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Pork and Tomatillo Chili Verde MAKES 6 SERVINGS

Tangy-sweet tomatillos give this meaty chili a uniquely delicious edge. Make a big pot to serve a crowd on the weekend or to heat up later for easy weeknight suppers. For hearty appetites, add a spoonful of rice to each bowl. Like most stews, this keeps for days. 2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 1½-inch chunks 1½ pounds tomatillos (about 15 medium), husks removed and rinsed (see Cook’s Notes) 2 stalks celery, coarsely chopped 1 small white onion, coarsely chopped 2 cloves garlic, peeled 1-2 jalapeño peppers, cored and seeded 1½ cups lightly packed cilantro leaves and tender stems 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 2 poblano peppers, cored, seeded, and diced 1 large bell pepper cored, seeded, and diced


1. Spread the pork out on a tray or plate to dry; pat dry with paper towels if necessary. 2. Heat the broiler with a rack about 6 inches below. Put the tomatillos on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil, turning a few times, until charred all over and beginning to soften, about 8 minutes. Transfer to a blender or food processor with any juices. Add the celery, onion, garlic, jalapeño, and cilantro and blend until smooth. Set aside. 3. Heat the oil in a large heavy-based stew pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Brown the pork in batches, turning with tongs, until nicely browned on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes per batch. Return to the tray or plate. 4. Lower the heat to medium, and add the poblano, green pepper, cumin, and chili powder. Sauté, stirring, until the peppers and spices are well combined, about 1 minute. Add the puréed tomatillo mixture and the broth. Season with 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste. Stir to dissolve any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Add the hominy and pork, along with any juices. Bring to a gentle simmer. Partially cover, and adjust the heat so the stew simmers gently, and cook until the pork is tender, about 1½ hours. Add salt to taste. Serve in deep bowls, topping as you like with cilantro, queso, radishes, and lime wedges. Accompany with warm tortillas and/or rice.

1½ 1 1¾ 1

teaspoons ground cumin teaspoon mild chili powder cups low-sodium chicken broth teaspoon kosher salt (or ¾ teaspoon fine salt), plus more to taste 1 (15.5-ounce) can hominy, drained (see Cook’s Notes)

For Serving (optional)

Fresh cilantro leaves, chopped ½ cup crumbled queso fresco or feta Thinly sliced radishes Lime wedges Warm tortillas and/or plain rice

Cook’s Notes: n Fresh tomatillos, sometimes called husk tomatoes, look a lot like unripe, green tomatoes except they come wrapped in a papery husk. Before using, peel off the husk and discard, then rinse the tomatillos under warm water to remove the sticky coating. If you can’t find tomatillos, green tomatoes may be substituted instead. n Hominy is made from whole kernels of corn that have been treated to soften their outer husks and plump up. Canned hominy is ready to eat straight from the can, but it benefits from being simmered alongside other ingredients as in this stew. Nutrition (per serving): With queso fresco: Calories: 440, Fat: 25g (Sat: 7 g), Cholesterol: 105 mg, Sodium: 740 mg, Carb: 19g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 7g, Protein: 36g

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Oven-Roasted “Beer Can” Chicken and Vegetables with Rosemary MAKES 4 SERVINGS

The beauty of the beer can here is twofold: The chicken roasts standing up so that every last bit of skin gets gorgeously crisp brown, and the liquid inside the can (you can use beer, wine, or soda) creates steam to keep the bird juicy and tasty. For best flavor, season the chicken 8 to 24 hours in advance. 1 1½ 1 1 1 ½ ½

(4-pound) chicken teaspoons ground coriander teaspoon ground cumin teaspoon chili powder teaspoon dried oregano teaspoon paprika teaspoon ground black pepper, plus more to taste 2 teaspoons kosher salt (or 1½ teaspoons fine), plus more to taste 1 (12-ounce) can beer, wine, or soda, at room temperature

1. Remove any giblets and large deposits of fat from the chicken. Pat dry inside and out with paper towels. Combine the coriander, cumin, chili powder, oregano, paprika, pepper, and salt in a small bowl. Season the chicken all over, inside and out, with the spices. For the best flavor, set on a rack over a dish and refrigerate for 8 to 24 hours prior to cooking. 2. Heat the oven to 375°F with a rack in the lower third. Let the chicken sit at room temperature while the oven heats. Open the can of beer (wine or soda) and pour off about 4 ounces of liquid and discard (or drink!). Put the rosemary sprigs into the can’s opening. Set the can in the center of a sturdy roasting pan, and use your hands to carefully place the chicken upright onto the can; slide the chicken down and wriggle it until it seems stable without tipping over. 3. In a large bowl, combine the carrots, potatoes, fennel, chopped rosemary, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, and toss to combine. Arrange the vegetables around the chicken. Transfer the pan to the oven, and roast, stirring the vegetables partway through, until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F, about 1 hour. 4. Transfer the roasting pan to a heat-proof surface, and lift the chicken off the can (it can help to have a second set of hands for this maneuver; see Cook’s Notes). Discard the can and its contents. Set the chicken on a carving board to rest for 10 minutes. Stir

2 sprigs fresh rosemary, plus 1 tablespoon chopped 3 medium-large carrots, cut into 1-inch chunks 8 ounces red potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks 1 bulb fennel, trimmed and cut into 3⁄4-inch wedges 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

the vegetables and check that they are tender and browned. If not, return to the oven while the chicken rests. 5. Carve the chicken as desired. Serve alongside the vegetables. Cook’s Notes: n You don’t need beer to make “beer-can” chicken. If beer’s not your thing, consider canned wine, or a “dry” option such as nonalcoholic beer or ginger ale. n You only need a 12-ounce can that is about two-thirds full to provide the combination of internal steam and upright vertical roasting “rack.” n Getting the fresh chicken onto the beer can is a simple enough operation: Merely open the cavity and shimmy the chicken onto its little perch. Getting the hot roasted chicken off the can, however, can be trickier, and it’s wise to enlist a helper. The safest way is to have one person secure the can either with tongs or a heavy towel. Then use a meat fork and tongs to carefully lift the chicken off the can, taking care not to overturn the can. Nutrition (per serving): With skin: Calories: 570, Fat: 34g (Sat: 9 g), Cholesterol: 245 mg, Sodium: 1400 mg, Carb: 15g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 3g, Protein: 51g Without skin: Calories: 420, Fat: 15g (Sat: 2.5 g), Cholesterol: 240 mg, Sodium: 870 mg, Carb: 15g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 3g, Protein: 51g

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Baked Cod with Cherry Tomatoes and Leeks in Parchment MAKES 2 SERVINGS

Baking fish in packets is a magical technique that’s perfect for a date night. The fish turns out tender and flavorful every time, the packets can be prepped ahead, and cleanup is a cinch— simply crumple up the paper and toss. Boiled red potatoes or plain rice make an ideal side. 3 tablespoons butter, softened, divided; plus more for the parchment 1½ cups thinly sliced leek (white and pale green of 1 medium leek); see Cook’s Notes ¼ cup dry white wine (or vegetable broth), plus 1 tablespoon 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme, plus 2 sprigs fresh thyme 1. Melt 1½ tablespoons butter in a medium skillet over medium-low heat. Add the leeks, ¼ cup wine (or broth), chopped thyme, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cover and simmer gently, stirring occasionally and adding a few drops of water if the pan dries out, until the leeks are silky-tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the remaining 1½ tablespoons butter with the lemon zest, juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. 2. Heat the oven to 400°F with a rack in the middle. Cut two 24x15-inch sheets of parchment paper. Fold each sheet in half, forming 15x12-inch rectangles, and use a pencil to draw a half-heart shape on each, centering it on the folded edge and making it as big as it will fit. Use scissors to cut out the hearts. 3. Open the parchment hearts on the counter. Butter the inside of the parchment, leaving a good 2-inch border. Divide the leeks between the 2 hearts, arranging them on half of the heart, near the fold. Place the cod fillets on top. Smear the fish with the lemon-butter mixture. Top with tomatoes and thyme sprigs. Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon wine (or broth) over top. Fold the other half of the parchment over to close the packet. Then, starting at the top of the heart, working with about 1 inch at a time, fold over the edge, pressing down to crease. Move along the edge of the packet, making overlapping folds, creasing as you go to make sure the pleats hold. Go back around, making another fold any place that isn’t tightly sealed. (The packets can be made up until this point and refrigerated for up to 3 hours.)

¼ 1 2 6-8

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest teaspoon fresh lemon juice (6-ounce) cod or haddock fillets, 1-inch thick cherry tomatoes, halved

4. Place the packets side by side on a baking sheet. Bake for 16 minutes; they will have puffed up some and browned slightly. (If fish packets have been in the refrigerator, increase time to 18 minutes.) 5. Carefully cut open the packets with scissors or a knife, keeping them flat so as not to spill any liquid. Carefully slide the contents out onto dinner plates or pasta bowls, and serve immediately. Cook’s Notes: n Leeks can harbor a good deal of sand and need a thorough rinse before cooking. Start by trimming away the thick, dark green tops, then split the remaining leek lengthwise and thinly slice each half. Drop the slices into a basin of cool water, swish around, and lift out, leaving any sand behind. For this recipe, there’s no need to dry the leeks. n This recipe is open to endless variation. Try it with salmon or halibut fillets. Add fresh herbs like dill and tarragon, or use orange in place of lemon, and swap out the leeks for a bed of fresh spinach or sautéed mushrooms. n The packets can be made with foil instead of parchment, but parchment looks nicer and you get more concentrated flavors. Because foil is easier to seal, you can skip the heart shape and make square-shaped packets. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 380, Fat: 19g (Sat: 11 g), Cholesterol: 120 mg, Sodium: 250 mg, Carb: 14g, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 32g

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Stuffed Pepper Boats with Quinoa-Lentil and Hazelnut Pilaf MAKES 4 SERVINGS AS A MAIN, 8 AS A SIDE

Sweet, thick-walled bell peppers are at their peak in the fall, and they make ideal “boats” to load up with a delectable pilaf. Just add a green salad and you’ve got a hearty vegetarian supper. A single “boat” also makes an exciting side to any roast. Choose a mix of red, yellow, and orange peppers to make these as colorful as they are tasty. 4 large (about 8 ounces each) bell peppers 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling Salt and pepper, to taste 1 cup diced onion 1 cup diced carrot 1 cup diced celery 1. Heat the oven to 350°F. Cut the peppers in half lengthwise and remove the cores, stems, ribs, and seeds. Brush inside and out with oil and arrange in a large baking dish. Season lightly with salt and pepper. 2. Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, and celery. Season with a salt and pepper and

3 cups cooked quinoa (see Cook’s Notes) 1½ cups cooked French green or black Beluga lentils (see Cook’s Notes) ½ cup chopped fresh parsley ½ cup chopped hazelnuts, toasted ½ cup grated Parmesan ½ cup grated Gruyere ⅓ cup panko (optional) sauté, stirring often until tender, about 7 minutes. Transfer to a mixing bowl. Add the quinoa, lentils, parsley, hazelnuts, and ¼ cup each Parmesan and Gruyere. Stir to combine, and add salt and pepper to taste. Spoon the mixture into the pepper boats, distributing evenly. Combine the remaining Parmesan, Gruyere, and panko (if using), and scatter

Brown Sugar and Soy Sauce Braised Short Ribs with Shiitakes MAKES 6 SERVINGS | SEE PHOTO ON PAGE 21

Tender, meaty, and tingling with hints of ginger, orange, and star anise, these fall-off-the-bone ribs are transformative. You’ll want something to accompany the shiitake-studded sauce, like noodles or rice. Steam or sauté heads of baby bok choy for a fitting side. 4½–5 pounds meaty bone-in beef short ribs 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided 8 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems and caps separated 6 scallions, whites and greens separated 1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and cut into 6 slices 2 star anise 1 cinnamon stick

2 teaspoons white or black peppercorns 3 strips orange zest (see Cook’s Note) ¼ cup dry sherry, white wine, or water ½ cup soy sauce, preferably low-sodium ¼ cup dark brown sugar, plus 2 tablespoons 1¾ cups low-sodium chicken broth 2 tablespoons cornstarch

1. Heat oven to 325°F. Pat ribs dry with paper towel. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large Dutch oven or heavy braising pot over medium heat. Brown ribs in batches, turning with tongs, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a platter, and continue until all ribs are browned. 2. Pour off and discard all but about 1 tablespoon fat from the pot. Return the pot to medium heat and add shiitake stems, scallion whites, ginger, star anise, cinnamon stick, peppercorns, and orange zest. Stir to combine everything with the fat, then add the sherry, stirring to dissolve any browned bits off the bottom of the pot. Add the

soy sauce, ¼ cup brown sugar, and broth. Bring to a simmer. Return the ribs to the pot, along with any juices. Cover and transfer to the oven to braise until fork-tender, about 2½ to 3 hours. 3. Transfer the ribs to a shallow baking dish, and cover with foil to keep warm. Strain the braising liquid into a bowl or other heatproof vessel, and skim to remove the surface fat. (The ribs may be prepared up to this point up to three days ahead; see Cook’s Notes.) 4. Thinly slice shiitake caps and finely chop the scallion greens. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a medium skillet or saucepan

over the top. Brush a piece of foil with oil, and use it to cover the baking dish (oil side down). (The peppers may be made to this point and refrigerated for up to 24 hours.) 3. Pour ½ cup water in the baking dish and bake until peppers are tender, 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake 10 minutes to brown tops. Serve warm or room temperature. Cook’s Notes: n Quinoa: 1 cup dried for 3 cups cooked. Rinse, then combine with 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, add a pinch salt, lower heat, cover, and simmer until water absorbed, 15 minutes. Let steam 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork. n Lentils: ½ cup dried for 1½ cups cooked. Rinse. Place in medium saucepan with enough cool water to cover by 2 inches. Add a pinch of salt, and boil gently, until tender, 18 to 20 minutes. Drain and cool. Nutrition (per serving): As main dish with breadcrumbs: Calories: 550, Fat: 22g (Sat: 6 g), Cholesterol: 25 mg, Sodium: 380 mg, Carb: 67g, Fiber: 15g, Sugar: 9g, Protein: 24g

over medium heat, and sauté the shiitake caps until brown and tender, about 6 minutes. Add half the chopped scallions. 5. For serving, combine cornstarch with 2 tablespoons water in a bowl. Pour the strained braising liquid into the pan with sautéed mushrooms and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Stir in the cornstarch slurry, a little at a time, stirring until thick enough to coat a spoon. Keep warm. 6. Heat the broiler to medium. Spoon about ½ cup strained braising liquid around the ribs, and spread each one with a thin layer of brown sugar. Slide the ribs under the broiler and broil until the brown sugar is melted and sizzling, 2 to 4 minutes. Spoon sauce and mushrooms around the ribs, sprinkle with remaining scallions, and serve. Cook’s Note: Ribs can be made up to three days ahead. After cooking, transfer to a baking dish and strain liquid into a heatproof container. Once cool, cover both tightly and refrigerate until ready to serve. Scrape chilled fat from the liquid’s surface and spoon about ½ cup over the ribs. Cover and reheat ribs in a 350°F oven about 25 minutes. Proceed to sauté mushrooms and make the sauce, as directed, then run the heated ribs under broiler just before serving. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 1,010, Fat: 59g (Sat: 23 g), Cholesterol: 265 mg, Sodium: 1,060 mg, Carb: 20g, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 11g, Protein: 92g n

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Pasta Plants &

Easily enjoy more healthy veggies when they’re mixed into everyone’s favorite pasta.



asta is a favorite for kids and adults, plus a reliable crowd pleaser when entertaining. And as long as you’re making everyone happy with pasta, why not slip in additional vegetables and make that plate a little more of a balanced meal? While a light pasta salad or quick pesto spaghetti fits the bill during warm weather, cooler days bring heartier pasta dishes and crave-worthy creamy sauces. Cozy baked pastas are the ultimate in comfort food and also a good dish to serve one day and reheat as needed the next. And fall is a perfect time to incorporate more of the harvest into your pasta dishes. In these recipes, butternut squash, cauliflower, and other autumnal favorites add seasonal color, flavor, and energy to favorite pastas. So, instead of relegating your veggies to a side dish, make them a part of the pasta in these recipes that are sure to become new family favorites.



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Veggie Lasagna with Butternut Bechamel MAKES 8 SERVINGS

Lasagna, with its layers of pasta and sauce baked to bubbling, golden perfection, is the ultimate comfort food. In this version, veggies make their way into the sauce and filling, with delectable results. Frozen squash, precooked sausage, and no-cook noodles help streamline the process, so you’ll have time to roast the cauliflower and carrots to buttery softness. 10 ounces frozen butternut squash, cooked, and puréed (1¼ cups puréed; see Cook’s Note) 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 large onion, chopped ¼ cup all-purpose flour 3 cups milk, divided 1 teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg 1 cup shredded Parmesan, divided 1. First, prepare the squash according to package instructions, then purée until smooth. Reserve. 2. In a 2-quart pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until soft and clear, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and sprinkle in the flour, then stir with a spatula to mix well. Place back on the heat and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and whisk in ½ cup of the milk until smooth, then whisk in the rest of the milk gradually to make a smooth mixture. Return to the heat, whisk in the puréed squash, salt, and nutmeg and cook, whisking, until bubbling and thickened. Whisk in the Parmesan and remove from the heat. Let cool slightly. (This can be done up to two days ahead and stored, tightly covered, in the refrigerator.) 3. Heat the oven to 400°F. In a 9x13-inch baking pan, combine the cauliflower, carrots, chopped sausage, and olive oil. Toss to coat, then cover the pan with foil. Roast for 20 minutes, then uncover, stir, and roast for 10 minutes longer. The cauliflower should be very tender and browned. 4. Either set the roasted vegetables aside and wash the pan for this step or use another 9x13-inch baking pan. Spread 1 cup of the sauce on the bottom of pan. Arrange 4 noodles on top of the sauce, overlapping slightly. Sprinkle evenly with half of the cauliflower mixture, then spoon 1 cup squash sauce over it and sprinkle with ½ cup of Asiago. Top with 4 noodles, remaining cauliflower mixture, ½ cup cheese, and 4 noodles, then spread the remaining bechamel over the noodles, making sure

6 cups cauliflower florets (1⁄2-inch across) 2 large carrots, quartered and sliced 8 ounces Italian sausage crumbles, precooked 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 (8- or 9-ounce) package no-cook lasagna noodles 2 cups shredded Asiago, divided

they are completely covered. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Then uncover and bake for 15 minutes longer, until bubbly and golden. Cook’s Note: If you prefer to bake a fresh squash rather than using frozen, heat the oven to 400°F and line a sheet pan with parchment. Halve the squash lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Place the halves, cut side down, on the pan and bake for about 30 minutes, until tender when pierced with a paring knife. Place on a rack and when cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 550, Fat: 27g (Sat: 13 g), Cholesterol: 70 mg, Sodium: 1160 mg, Carb: 48g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 11g, Protein: 28g

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Spinach and Ricotta Gnocchi in Vegetable Sauce MAKES 4 TO 6 SERVINGS

Fresh, handmade gnocchi takes a little time, but the results are so ethereal that you will not regret making it. Italian “nonnas” know that tender, creamy ricotta gnocchi is the food of love. In this recipe, you’ll save time by using the food processor to mince the spinach (or you could mince with a knife), and make a sauce of soft, sautéed vegetables to show off your creamy gnocchi. 16 15 1 1 1 ¼ ⅛ ¾

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided 1 large onion, chopped finely 1 medium zucchini, cut into 1⁄2-inch cubes 1 cup grape tomatoes, quartered 4 cloves garlic, chopped ½ cup fresh parsley, chopped

ounces fresh spinach ounces ricotta cheese, drained large egg cup Parmesan, plus more for serving teaspoon salt, divided teaspoon pepper teaspoon nutmeg cup all-purpose flour, plus ½ cup, divided

1. Put on a large pot of water to boil for the spinach. Place a colander in the sink. Drop the spinach into the boiling water and return to a boil for 1 minute, then drain. Rinse the spinach with cold water, then squeeze out with your hands. Place the spinach on a clean kitchen towel and spread thinly, then roll the towel up to absorb any remaining water. Transfer the spinach to a food processor bowl. 2. Add the ricotta, egg, Parmesan, ½ teaspoon salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Pulse to mix until smooth. Scrape out into a large bowl. Stir in the ¾ cup flour. 3. Spread the remaining ½ cup flour on a sheet pan. 4. Use a tablespoon (or pastry bag) to make rounded scoops of the mixture—you’ll get about 44 gnocchi—then place on the sheet pan. Roll in flour and coat heavily. Cover the pan and refrigerate for 2 hours. 5. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. 6. In a large sauté pan over medium-high

heat, warm 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the onion and stir until sizzling, then reduce to medium and sauté for 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, tomatoes, and garlic and stir for 10 minutes, until the zucchini is tender and lightly golden. Stir in remaining salt. 7. To cook the gnocchi, drop 8 gnocchi into the boiling water, then return to a boil. Use a slotted spoon to gently stir, then reduce the heat as needed to simmer. When the gnocchi bob up to the surface of the water, scoop them out with the slotted spoon. Place in a bowl and drizzle with the remaining oil, swirling to coat. Continue with remaining gnocchi. 8. Gently slide the gnocchi into the sauté pan with the zucchini, add the parsley, and toss to mix. Serve warm. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 380, Fat: 20g (Sat: 7 g), Cholesterol: 60 mg, Sodium: 760 mg, Carb: 32g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 2g, Protein: 20g

You may have seen recipes that don’t mention adding salt to the cooking water, while some emphasize the importance of salt. Dry pasta in the box has not been salted, so adding salt to the water seasons the pasta from the inside out as the noodles absorb the water. The standard amount to use is 1 tablespoon per gallon of water, or per pound of pasta (a typical Dutch oven-size pot is 5 quarts and holds about a gallon). Of course, if you are avoiding sodium, you can use less, or no salt, and cut the amount of salt in the sauce as well.


Why Salt the Pasta Water?

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Penne in Pumpkin Vodka Sauce MAKES 6 SERVINGS

teaspoon salt ounces penne pasta cups cauliflower florets pound shrimp, shelled and deveined (optional) 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil for searing shrimp ½ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. 4. Once the water is boiling, cook the pasta according to package directions, adding the cauliflower for the last 3 minutes. Drain well. 5. Return the pasta and cauliflower to the pot and pour the sauce over them. If adding shrimp, wash the sauté pan and place it over medium-high heat, drizzle with olive oil, and add the shrimp to the hot pan. Sear shrimp for about 2 minutes per side, until pink and cooked through. Serve pasta topped with seared shrimp (if using) and parsley.

and soft, about 10 minutes. Add the rosemary, pumpkin, tomato paste, and vodka and stir to mix. 3. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and reduce to keep the sauce at a low simmer for about 5 minutes. Stir in the cream and salt.

Nutrition (per serving): Without shrimp: Calories: 530, Fat: 16g (Sat: 10 g), Cholesterol: 45 mg, Sodium: 430 mg, Carb: 72g, Fiber: 8g, Sugar: 10g, Protein: 14g With shrimp: Calories: 580, Fat: 17g (Sat: 10 g), Cholesterol: 140 mg, Sodium: 860 mg, Carb: 73g, Fiber: 8g, Sugar: 10g, Protein: 24g

Tomato-vodka sauce is even better when you add creamy pumpkin to the mix and a hint of rosemary is simmered in. Save a step by cooking cauliflower with the pasta in the pot. This can be a satisfying vegetarian dish, or you can add the optional shrimp for your seafood-loving friends. 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 large onion, chopped 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling) ½ cup tomato paste ½ cup vodka ¾ cup heavy cream 1. Set a large pot of salted water over high heat and bring to a boil for cooking the pasta. 2. In a large sauté pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add onion and stir to coat, and raise heat to bring to a sizzle. Reduce heat to medium-low and stir occasionally until clear

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So Many Pasta Shapes, So Many Options When you are in the pasta aisle, you might be comparing 30 different shapes in their glorious diversity. You might wonder, why so many? Each of the shapes has stood the test of time and is considered essential in certain dishes. By categorizing them into shapes, you can easily switch between the same category, such as swapping a long, thin pasta for another, with good results. Here are highlights.


Long and Thin (spaghetti, linguine, angel hair) Long, smooth pastas are considered best with lighter, less chunky sauces. Because they don’t have any ridges and you eat them by twirling around a fork, they don’t grip bits of meat or veggies. Classics like spaghetti in pesto and linguine alfredo illustrate perfect twirlable combos. Short, Tubular (penne, rigatoni, macaroni) Short pastas are any that you can stab with a fork and not twirl. Extruded or rolled pasta that forms a tube is usually ridged as well as hollow, allowing it maximum sauce-holding capacity. Chunky sauces pair well. Larger tubes like manicotti can be stuffed with a filling of cheese or meat. Penne in Bolognese sauce is a good example.

and cheese. Farfalle with peas shows how well it works. Tiny Pasta (riso, orzo, ditalini, alphabets) Tiny pastas are most often used in soups or prepared as you would rice used in pilafs. They are slippery and spoonable and barely need to be chewed. They are great in minestrone.

Filled Pastas and Lasagna (tortellini, ravioli)

In a filled pasta dish, the fireworks are inside, so a complicated sauce is unnecessary. Lasagna noodles are the building blocks of the classic baked dish and are available in classic, no-cook, or fresh sheets.

Gnocchi The dumplings of the pasta world, gnocchi are most commonly made from potatoes and have a ridged side to catch and hold sauces. The world of gnocchi is wide, and they can be made from just about anything, from the ricotta ones here, to other veggies and beans. Gnocchi pairs well with just about any sauce.

Short, Shapes (shells, orecchiette, farfalle, rotini, radiatori)

Cups, corkscrews, and bows are all created to catch and hold whatever is around them, from chunky meats to peas

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Cajun pasta is the savory marriage of a creamy Italian pasta and the spicy Cajun chicken of Louisiana. The creamy sauce hides a bit of puréed cauliflower, and the penne is accompanied by sautéed peppers, mushrooms, and tomatoes for more veggies. 1 cup frozen cauliflower rice, thawed 1 teaspoon salt 1 cup heavy cream 8 ounces chicken breast 2 tablespoons Cajun spice, divided 2 tablespoons butter 1 small red bell pepper, chopped 4 ounces mushroom, sliced 2 large Roma tomatoes, chopped 3 cloves garlic 16 ounces pappardelle ½ cup Parmesan 1. Put on a large pot of salted water to boil for the pasta. 2. In a food processor, place the cauliflower rice and salt. Process until smooth, scraping down as needed. With the machine running, gradually pour the cream through the feed tube, until smoothly mixed. 3. Chop the chicken breast into bite-size pieces and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the Cajun spice. 4. In a large sauté pan over medium heat, melt the butter and add the chicken. Raise the heat to medium-high and sauté until lightly browned. Add the peppers, mushrooms, and tomatoes, and stir until the vegetables are softened and lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and remaining Cajun spice and stir for 2 minutes. 5. Cook the pasta according to package directions, about 8 minutes, then drain. 6. Add the cauliflower purée to the chicken mixture in the pan and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to simmer gently for 5 minutes. Add the pasta to the sauce, sprinkle with Parmesan, and mix with tongs. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 530, Fat: 23g (Sat: 13 g), Cholesterol: 90 mg, Sodium: 800 mg, Carb: 62g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 6g, Protein: 23g

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese with Spinach MAKES 8 SERVINGS

Macaroni and cheese is a perfect place to slide in a little creamy butternut squash, blended with the cheesy sauce. Then, more cubes of squash and a few handfuls of spinach can nestle in with the tender elbow macaroni for even more plant-based goodness. 4 cups cubed butternut squash (2 10-ounce bags frozen), about half a squash (see Cook’s Note page 33) 16 ounces elbow macaroni 2 cups baby spinach, chopped ¼ cup (1⁄2 stick) butter, plus some for coating pan ¼ cup all-purpose flour 3 cups milk 1. Heat the oven to 375°F. Lightly butter a 9x13-inch baking pan or a 2-quart baking dish and reserve. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Place a colander in the sink. 2. Drop the squash cubes into the boiling water and cook until tender when pierced with a paring knife, about 8 minutes. Scoop out with a slotted spoon and place in the colander in the sink. Reserve half for sauce. Add the macaroni to the still-boiling water and cook according to package directions, about 6 minutes. 3. Place the spinach on top of the remaining squash cubes in the colander, and when the macaroni is cooked, pour it over the spinach, wilting the leaves. Shake to drain, but don’t rinse. Set aside. 4. In a food processor or blender, purée the reserved squash cubes until smooth. 5. In a 2-quart pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Remove from the heat and whisk in the flour, and when smooth, return to the heat and cook until bubbling, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and

½ cup heavy cream 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese 1 teaspoon salt For the Topping

½ cup panko ½ cup Parmesan, grated 2 tablespoons butter, melted

gradually whisk in the milk and cream to make a smooth paste. Return to the heat and whisk until the milk comes to a simmer and thickens slightly. Whisk in the squash purée and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and whisk in the cheddar cheese until melted. Whisk in salt. 6. Transfer the macaroni mixture to a large bowl and pour the cheese sauce over it. Stir to combine. 7. For the topping, in a medium bowl, combine the panko, Parmesan, and butter and toss to mix. Scrape the macaroni mixture into the prepared baking pan and smooth the top, then carefully cover evenly with the panko mixture. 8. Bake for about 40 minutes, until bubbling and evenly golden brown on top. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 640, Fat: 32g (Sat: 18 g), Cholesterol: 90 mg, Sodium: 720 mg, Carb: 68g, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 9g, Protein: 24g n

Alternative Pastas With growing demand for gluten-free, whole-grain, and lower-carb products, you can now find alternatives that suit your needs. When subbing with an alternative pasta, look for something the same shape and size as called for in the recipe. In general, alternative pastas need a little more attention—set a timer and test, and drain the moment that they are al dente. They are not as sturdy, and overcooking can lead to broken or mushy pasta.


Cajun Chicken Pasta

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Fall for Apples


pples are a favorite fruit year round, but in autumn when the domestic harvest brings bushels of the deliciously juicy fruit to the produce aisles, it’s prime time to enjoy your favorite varieties. Do you wait all year for a fresh Honeycrisp? Or Jazz more your style? Rather grab a Gala or Granny Smith? Whether you prefer sweet and tender or crisp and tart, apples are deliciously healthy on their own, of course, and also as great in savory dishes as they are in desserts. Washington, Michigan, and New York are the top three states in apple production, and here we share a selection of recipes from their apple associations to help you enjoy all their apple-y goodness in more ways than you might have thought. –mary subialka

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Embrace the delicious diversity of apples—from sweet and tender to tart and crunchy.

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Add Ambrosia apples to this simple barbecue chicken flatbread to add a nontraditional and nice sweet bite. This is a great appetizer for a party and even makes for an easy family dinner. 1 large (about 11x4-inch) flatbread ¼ cup barbecue sauce ½ cup shredded swiss or mozzarella cheese 4-6 ounces cooked chicken ¼ cup thinly sliced red onion ¼ cup frozen corn, thawed ½ medium Ambrosia apple Cilantro, for garnish (optional) 1. Heat oven to 375°F. Chop chicken and apples into about ½-inch pieces. 2. Place flatbread on a cookie sheet. Assemble flatbread by evenly spreading barbecue sauce over flatbread. Add more if needed. Sprinkle about half of the cheese over barbecue sauce. Top with chicken, red onion, corn, and apple. Finish by sprinkling the remaining cheese over toppings. This will hold the flatbread and toppings together. 3. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until crust is browned and cheese is bubbly. Cut into 12 pieces and top with cilantro, if desired. Cook’s Note: You can add the chopped apple after cooking if you would like crunchy apple pieces.


Nutrition (per slice): Calories: 60, Fat: 1g (Sat: .5 g), Cholesterol: 10 mg, Sodium: 160 mg, Carb: 7g, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 5g

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Apple Bites

Planting the Seed John Chapman, better known as Johnny Appleseed, was a real person and one of the reasons we have so many apples today. Throughout the early 1800s, Chapman planted and owned many acres of apple orchards along America’s western frontier and sold and traded apple trees. Storage Tips They may look nice in a bowl on the table, but at room temperature, apples ripen 10 times faster than when refrigerated. To stay crisp and juicy and to prevent decay, the best way to store them is inside a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator. And keep them away from cabbage, carrots, and onions since apples can absorb odor.


Baked Squash with Apples and Chicken Sausage MAKES 4 SERVINGS COURTESY MICHIGAN APPLES

Winter squash and apples are so good for you and pair deliciously in this recipe that includes brown rice and chicken sausage. All you need to complete this meal is a prepared green salad. 2 medium acorn squash 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided 3 links (about 2½ ounces each) precooked apple-chicken sausage, sliced into bite-sized pieces 1 small sweet onion, chopped 2 small Michigan Apples, cored, peeled and chopped (see Cook’s Notes) 1 cup cooked brown rice 1 teaspoon dried thyme ½ teaspoon dried sage ½ teaspoon ground black pepper ½ cup shredded park skim mozzarella cheese, plus ¼ cup for sprinkling on top 1. Heat oven to 375°F. Halve squash from stem to point and scoop out the pulp. (Note: to make the squash easier to cut, pierce with

a knife and microwave for 2 minutes first). 2. Drizzle baking pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil, then place squash cut side down on pan and bake for 30 to 45 minutes, or until squash is tender. Remove from oven and let cool. 3. Meanwhile, sauté onions in 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat until softened, about 7 minutes. Mix cooked onions with sausage, apples, brown rice, thyme, sage, pepper, and cheese in a large bowl. 4. Scoop out all but ½ inch of flesh from each squash half. Place squash in the bowl with the sausage mixture and blend well. Divide stuffing among the 4 squash shells, packing firmly and mounding slightly to fit. Top with additional cheese and place on a baking sheet. 5. Return pan to the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until cheese is melted and filling is hot. Serve immediately. Cook’s Notes: n The squash can be stuffed ahead and baked later in the day and this recipe can easily be cut in half if needed. n Michigan Apple suggests Braeburn, Cortland, Empire, Gala, or Ida Red for this recipe. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 430, Fat: 16g (Sat: 4.5 g), Cholesterol: 5 mg, Sodium: 480 mg, Carb: 57g, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 17g, Protein: 18g


An Apple a Day Ancient claims of the outstanding benefits of apples stem from a variety of nutritional elements we can identify today. The fruit has zero fat and is an excellent source of fiber, and a good source of vitamin C, potassium, and antioxidant flavonoids. Plus, a medium apple has only about 80 calories. Modern research has found that apple consumption is linked to aiding weight loss, decreasing the risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes, improving gut health, and symptoms of asthma.

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Juicy sweet, crunchy apples pair deliciously with both sweet and savory seasonings in this easy-to-make main dish. ½ ½ 3 2 2 ¼ 1¼ ½ ½ 1 2 2 1 1 1 4 4

cup plus 1 tablespoon apple cider cup tomato sauce tablespoons light brown sugar tablespoons apple cider vinegar tablespoons soy sauce teaspoon ground ginger pounds boneless pork sirloin chops, cut into 1-inch cubes teaspoon kosher salt teaspoon ground black pepper tablespoon vegetable oil garlic cloves, minced Michigan Gala apples, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces large red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces small yellow onion, cut into 1-inch pieces tablespoon cornstarch cups cooked white or brown rice green onions, thinly sliced

1. In a small bowl, stir together the ½ cup cider, tomato sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, soy sauce, and ginger. 2. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Heat oil in large high-sided skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork to skillet in an even layer and cook 5 to 6 minutes or until pork begins to brown, stirring occasionally. 3. Add garlic, apples, bell pepper, and yellow onion to skillet. Cook 3 to 4 minutes longer or until onion begins to soften, stirring occasionally. 4. Stir in cider mixture. Cook 4 to 5 minutes or until apples and vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally. 5. Whisk cornstarch and remaining 1 tablespoon cider in small bowl until smooth. Stir cornstarch mixture into skillet and heat to boiling over medium-high heat. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Sauce should thicken during this time. 6. Divide rice among 4 plates and divide pork mixture over rice. Serve garnished with green onions. SWEET AND SOUR PORK WITH APPLES

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 570, Fat: 11g (Sat: 3 g), Cholesterol: 90 mg, Sodium: 1040 mg, Carb: 78g, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 24g, Protein: 39g

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These apple cinnamon pastries are the perfect spiced treat for the fall—but they’re also perfect any time of the year. For the Pastries


For these cookies, the dough can be a bit wet from the apple juices, which also lends to the overall flavor and texture. Because of this, there is some chill time involved. We promise it’s completely necessary—and worth the wait! 1½ 1 ½ 1½ 1 2 1 1 ¾ 1½ 1 1

cups all-purpose flour teaspoon baking powder teaspoon salt teaspoons ground cinnamon teaspoon ground cardamom cups old-fashioned rolled oats cup pecans, coarsely chopped, plus pecan halves to top cookies Koru (or Fuji or Honeycrisp) apple, peeled and diced (about 1 cup) cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature cups packed light brown sugar teaspoon vanilla extract large egg, room temperature

1. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom. Set aside. In a separate medium-sized mixing bowl, toss together the oats, chopped pecans, and diced apples. Set aside. 2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together

butter and light brown sugar on medium-high speed for about 1 minute, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl halfway through. Then add the egg and vanilla extract. Mix on medium speed for about 30 seconds, until fully incorporated. 3. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture, spoonfuls at a time, until just combined and no flour streaks remain. Remove bowl from the stand mixer and fold in the oat/pecan/apple mixture with a spatula. 4. Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. About 15 minutes before baking, heat oven to 375°F and position racks on upper and lower thirds of the oven. Prepare 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. 5. Scoop 3 tablespoons of dough and roll into a ball between your palms. Evenly space 8 dough balls on each baking sheet and keep remaining dough in the fridge until ready to bake. 6. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes until edges start to brown, rotating the baking sheets 180 degrees and switching between top and bottom racks. (This ensures an even bake since the top of your oven is typically warmer than the bottom.) 7. Remove baking sheet and immediately (and gently) press one pecan half on top of each cookie. Cool 10 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a cooling rack. Nutrition (per cookie): Calories: 280, Fat: 14g (Sat: 6 g), Cholesterol: 30 mg, Sodium: 100 mg, Carb: 37g, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 21g, Protein: 3g

1 sheet store-bought puff pastry, thawed 3 Koru (or Fuji or Honeycrisp) apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced 1 tablespoon lemon juice ¼ cup dark brown sugar 1 teaspoon cinnamon ¼ teaspoon nutmeg ¼ teaspoon cardamom 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour ½ cup chopped pecans 1 large egg, lightly whisked (for egg wash) Demerara sugar or other coarse sugar, for topping For the Glaze

1¼ 2 1 1

cups sifted powdered sugar tablespoons maple syrup tablespoon whole milk teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Heat oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. 2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out puff pastry to a 12x12-inch square and cut into 6 (4x6-inch) rectangles. With a small knife, lightly score a ½-inch border around the inside of each rectangle (be careful not to cut all the way through). 3. In a large bowl, combine apples, lemon juice, brown sugar, spices, and flour. Leaving the borders clear, overlap your apples in the middle of each pastry. Sprinkle chopped pecans over the top. 4. Brush the borders with egg wash and sprinkle with demerara sugar (any works). 5. Bake in the preheated oven on the middle rack for 15 to 20 minutes or until desired browning. 6. Once completely cooled, whisk together the glaze ingredients and drizzle over the pastries. Enjoy as-is or top with your favorite ice cream or whipped cream. Nutrition (each): Calories: 490, Fat: 23g (Sat: 4.5 g), Cholesterol: 30 mg, Sodium: 120 mg, Carb: 67g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 42g, Protein: 5g n

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Apple Fun Facts n Apples float because they are 85 percent water. n It takes the energy from 50 apple tree leaves to produce one apple. n The average apple contains 5 seeds. n The science of growing apples is called pomology. n The star-shaped bottom of an apple is called its calyx.


Source: Washington Apples


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keep it

simple Make the most of your time with these quick-and-easy meals any night of the week. RECIPES BY JOANNA CISMARU


he hustle and bustle of everyday life can make getting dinner on the table a challenge—or filled with takeout containers. But cooking meals doesn’t need to be complicated or take hours of prep. With this in mind, writer, photographer, and cookbook author Joanna Cismaru wanted to create a resource with quick meals for home cooks of any skill level to make sure that no one is left ordering takeout for the umpteenth time. Her book, “The Big Book of Jo’s Quick & Easy Meals,” is filled with recipes that require little to no prep, minimal pots and pans, and only an hour or less to complete. From chicken and seafood to casserole and soup, Cismaru has recipes for every palate that will become fast favorites, including the following from her book that will keep you and your family well fed with homemade dinners. –samantha johnson ALBONDIGAS SOUP

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Don’t let the fancy name of this recipe scare you away. Albondigas simply means “meatballs.” This is a traditional Mexican soup, a light broth loaded with vegetables. It is quite light but very hearty. Serve it with a good crusty bread and it can be enjoyed as an entire meal. –joanna cismaru For the Meatballs

1 pound extra lean ground beef 2 cloves garlic, minced ½ onion, chopped ½ cup long-grain rice (such as basmati) 1 large egg, beaten ¼ cup chopped fresh mint ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley ¼ cup chopped fresh oregano or 1 tablespoon dried oregano 1 teaspoon ground cumin ½ teaspoon chili powder ½ teaspoon salt, or as needed ½ teaspoon black pepper, or as needed

For the Soup

2 ½ 3 1 2 1 3 3

⅛ 1 2 2

1. To make the meatballs, combine the beef, garlic, onion, rice, egg, mint, parsley, oregano, cumin, chili powder, and salt and pepper in a large bowl. Mix the ingredients well. Shape the mixture into meatballs, about 1 inch in diameter. You should get 25 to 30 meatballs. Place the meatballs in the fridge. 2. To make the soup, heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed, 5-quart pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent and being careful not to burn the garlic. Add the carrot and potatoes and cook the mixture for 3 to 5 minutes, until the vegetables are beginning to caramelize. 3. Add the tomatoes and their juice, broth, water, salt and pepper, and cayenne pepper. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for about

tablespoons olive oil onion, chopped cloves garlic, minced carrot, chopped potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1-inch cubes (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained cups low-sodium beef broth cups water Salt, as needed Black pepper, as needed teaspoon cayenne pepper tablespoon fresh lemon juice tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

5 minutes. Slowly add the meatballs to the pot, one at a time. 4. Slowly stir the soup with a wooden spoon. Cover the pot and cook the soup for 15 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through. Add the lemon juice, cilantro, and parsley. Taste the soup for seasoning and adjust it as needed prior to serving. Cook’s Note: If you have extra meatballs or don’t use them all, place them in an airtight container and freeze them until you are ready to use them. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 370, Fat: 18g (Sat: 6 g), Cholesterol: 80 mg, Sodium: 390 mg, Carb: 31g, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 20g

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Grilled Tomahawk Pork Chops MAKES 4 SERVINGS | TOTAL TIME: 2 HOURS 55 MINUTES

This stunning cut of pork deserves the royal treatment. Using a simple five-ingredient dry rub and a compound butter to seal the deal, every bite of this easy recipe feels gourmet. But it’s simple enough to make any night of the week! –joanna cismaru 1 2 1 1 ½ 4

tablespoon kosher salt, or as needed teaspoons black pepper, or as needed teaspoon chili powder teaspoon onion powder teaspoon sugar (12 ounces each) tomahawk pork chops (or other bone-in pork chops) Butter, for serving Mashed Potatoes, for serving Cooked peas, for serving

1. In a small bowl, combine the kosher salt, black pepper, chili powder, onion powder, and sugar. Generously rub half of the spice mixture over both sides of the pork chops. Refrigerate the pork chops for 2 hours before grilling them. 2. Preheat the grill to medium heat, about 350°F. 3. Meanwhile, remove the pork chops from the fridge and let them sit at room temperature, covered, for about 20 minutes. Pat the chops dry with paper towels and re-season them with the remaining half of the spice mixture. 4. Lightly spray the pork chops with cooking spray and place them on the grill. Grill them on both sides until their internal temperature reaches between 145 and 150°F. 5. Transfer the pork chops to a cutting board and let them rest for 15 minutes before slicing them. Serve them with butter, mashed potatoes, and peas (optional). Cook’s Notes: n Grilling time can vary depending on the thickness of the chop. A 1-inch-thick pork chop can take 12 to 14 minutes, and a 1½-inch-thick pork chop can take about 20 minutes. The best way to tell if your chops are done is to use an instant meat thermometer. n Transfer the pork chops to an airtight container and store them up to four days in the fridge. You can also keep pork chops in the freezer for two to three months. Let the frozen pork thaw fully in the fridge overnight before reheating. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 780, Fat: 62g (Sat: 23 g), Cholesterol: 175 mg, Sodium: 1920 mg, Carb: 3g, Fiber: 0g, Sugar: <1g, Protein: 54g


I can’t get over how simple this recipe is: It requires minimal effort and prep time, it calls for simple ingredients that you’re likely to already have, and it cooks fast. This chicken dish is also super versatile. You can serve it with anything you like—rice, mashed potatoes, steamed veggies, noodles, you name it. –joanna cismaru 1½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips ¼ teaspoon salt, or as needed ½ teaspoon black pepper, or as needed 4 tablespoons butter 4 cloves garlic, minced

¼ 1 1 ½

teaspoon red pepper flakes teaspoon smoked paprika tablespoon Sriracha sauce cup low-sodium or unsalted chicken broth 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley Lemon slices, as needed

1. Season the chicken with salt and black pepper. 2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken strips and cook them for 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken from the skillet. 3. In the same skillet, combine the garlic, red pepper flakes, smoked paprika, and Sriracha sauce. Sauté the mixture for 30 seconds, until the garlic is aromatic. Finally, deglaze the skillet with the chicken broth and bring the sauce to a simmer. 4. Add the chicken back to the skillet and gently toss the chicken, so that each piece of chicken is coated with the sauce. 5. Remove the skillet from the

heat. Garnish the chicken with the parsley and lemon slices. Serve hot or warm. Cook’s Notes: n This garlic-butter chicken will last in the fridge for up to three days if it’s wrapped well or stored in an airtight container. n To extend the shelf life of this dish, freeze it, wrapped well or stored in an airtight container. It will last 4 to 6 months. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 310, Fat: 15g (Sat: 9 g), Cholesterol: 130 mg, Sodium: 390 mg, Carb: 3g, Fiber: 0g, Sugar: 4g, Protein: 39g

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I had never had Vietnamese food until we moved to Calgary, so I was excited to try it. I loved it so much that we used to go at least once a week to a Vietnamese restaurant for lunch, which is what inspired me to make these fish tacos. Featuring commonly used ingredients in Vietnamese cooking—like fish sauce, mint, and cilantro—these fish tacos are not only incredibly tasty but they are also healthy and refreshing. –joanna cismaru For the Marinade and Fish

Spicy New Orleans Shrimp MAKES 2 SERVINGS | TOTAL TIME: 1 HOUR

The shrimp are spicy and decadent. Make sure you have a French baguette to dip into that sauce and soak up all the flavor! –joanna cismaru 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce 1 teaspoon chili powder 1 teaspoon liquid smoke 1 teaspoon smoked paprika 1 teaspoon dried oregano 1 teaspoon Sriracha or Tabasco sauce 1. In a large oven-safe skillet over low heat, combine the butter, oil, sweet chili sauce, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, liquid smoke, smoked paprika, oregano, Sriracha sauce, garlic, lemon juice, salt, black pepper, and parsley. Stir the mixture and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes. 2. Remove the skillet from the heat, and let the sauce cool for 2 minutes. 3. Add the shrimp and toss them in the sauce, so that they are fully immersed and coated well. 4. Cover the skillet with foil and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 4 hours, to allow the shrimp to marinate in the sauce. 5. Heat the oven to 400°F. 6. Bake the shrimp for 10 to 15 minutes, until it is opaque.

4 cloves garlic, minced Juice from half of a lemon, plus more as needed Salt, as needed Black pepper, as needed 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped 1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined French bread, for serving

7. Serve the shrimp immediately with crusty French bread and a drizzle of lemon juice as needed. Cook’s Note: This recipe will keep stored in an airtight container in the fridge for three to four days, so feel free to make it ahead of time. You can freeze the shrimp in an airtight container for up to three months— just allow the dish to thaw overnight in the fridge before cooking the shrimp. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 430, Fat: 27g (Sat: 10 g), Cholesterol: 315 mg, Sodium: 1610 mg, Carb: 10g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 11g, Protein: 32g

1 1 2 1 1 1 ¼ ¼ 1½

teaspoon ground turmeric teaspoon minced fresh ginger cloves garlic, minced teaspoon sugar teaspoon fish sauce (see Cook’s Notes) tablespoon fresh lime juice teaspoon salt, or as needed teaspoon black pepper, or as needed pound skinless halibut fillets, cut into 2-inch pieces (see Cook’s Notes)

For the Salsa

6 ½ 2 ¼ ¼ ¼ 1 2

green onions, chopped red onion, chopped cups cherry tomatoes, chopped cup chopped fresh basil cup chopped fresh mint cup chopped fresh cilantro teaspoon fish sauce tablespoons fresh lime juice Salt, as needed Black pepper, as needed

For the Tacos

2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided 12 medium tortillas 2 cups shredded cabbage Sriracha sauce, as needed 1. To make the marinade and fish, combine the turmeric, ginger, garlic, sugar, fish sauce, lime juice, salt, and black pepper in a medium bowl. Add the halibut pieces to the bowl and toss them in the marinade, making sure each piece is fully coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours. 2. Meanwhile, make the salsa. In a medium bowl, toss together the green onions, red onion, tomatoes, basil, mint, cilantro, fish sauce, lime juice, salt, and black pepper. Refrigerate the salsa until you are ready to assemble the tacos. 3. To make the tacos, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.

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Add about half of the halibut pieces and fry them for 2 to 4 minutes per side, until they are light golden brown. Remove the halibut pieces from the skillet and set them aside. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and repeat the process with the remaining half of the fish. 4. To assemble the tacos, fill each tortilla with some of the shredded cabbage, then with the halibut. Feel free to flake the fish a bit with a fork if necessary. Top the tacos with the salsa, then drizzle them with some Sriracha sauce.

Cook’s Notes: n Fish sauce can be substituted with low-sodium soy sauce. n You can use any type of whitefish that you prefer or that is available to you. Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 350, Fat: 9g (Sat: 2.5 g), Cholesterol: 55 mg, Sodium: 770 mg, Carb: 40g, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 6g, Protein: 27g n


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Every Kitchen Tells a Story

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T The personal and the profound mix in Kwame Onwuachi’s “My America.”



here’s a particular flavor that speaks to each of us. It could be our g r a n d m o t h e r ’s signature dish or the distinctive spices in a favorite family meal, and although it’s different for every individual, what it evokes is the same: a story of family, togetherness, heritage, and culture. It’s into this space that chef Kwame Onwuachi is operating with his new cookbook, “My America: Recipes from a Young Black Chef.” “Everyone’s experience of America is a little bit different, you know?” Onwuachi says. “This is my version of America.” That version is as eclectic as Onwuachi’s background. He grew up in the Bronx and spent a couple years with family in Nigeria when he was a child. He lived in Baton Rouge for a time before returning to New York to launch his culinary career. Along the way, his vision of cooking encompassed the heritage of his relatives spanning from the Caribbean to Africa to the American South and back. “Every dish has a story, it has a soul,” Onwuachi explains. “You’re cooking it to share an experience, a snapshot in time with someone. I wanted to put my ancestors on my back and tell their story for this book. It’s really the story of the people who came before me, which made me who I am.” The book is divided into regions as well as genres (greens, seafood, poultry, desserts), and recipes are accompanied by personal and historical context. Onwuachi’s jerk chicken recipe, for instance, comes with a memory of fleeting good times amid an oftentempestuous relationship with his father. His shado beni chutney recipe tells a more universal diasporic story of how indentured servitude spread millions of Indians—and their cooking flavors—throughout the British Empire. “I think you can’t know where you’re going unless you know where you came from,” Onwuachi adds. “This book is tapping into why I am the way I am, why I eat what I eat, and how this is my benchmark for good cuisine.” As a cookbook, “My America” contains a wealth of mouthwatering, easy-tounderstand recipes, from hearty jambalaya (see the recipe on page 54) and a savory red bean sofrito to a Jamaican-style burger. It kicks off with an invaluable section focused on the pantry, which provides recipes for a variety of spice mixes to assemble and keep for various dishes. Onwuachi also soulfully reflects on how these concoctions are a product of the historical Black experience, from cayenne hot sauce serving as a health

tonic to keep slaves healthy enough to work, or how berbere spice made its way along the silk road from Ethiopia to China. “Black culture is a culture of resilience and tenacity,” Onwuachi says. “Take the culture of the Caribbean, with indentured Indian servants—that’s a story of tenacity. It’s also ultimately a story about freedom. It’s in the food, and it’s also in the fabric of who people are.” The Journey of a Young Chef

Onwuachi came from a financially challenged background in the Bronx and had enough of a proclivity for getting in trouble that he was sent to live with his paternal grandfather in Nigeria at 10 years old to, in his own words, “learn respect.” The experience also exposed him to novel flavors and ingredients in this new culture. He was later expelled from the University of Bridgeport, and he ended up working as a chef on an oil cleanup boat in the Gulf of Mexico. He went on to create a catering business in New York, launched in part with the profits from selling candy on the subway. He was drawn to the world of fine dining and learned about the French tradition of cooking at the Culinary Institute of America (he remembers “the technique, the sauces, the ingredients, the language, the white hats, the clean toque, the Oui, chef ”). He worked in the well-regarded Manhattan restaurants Per Se and Eleven Madison Park, and then competed on Bravo TV’s “Top Chef ” in 2015, where his culinary chops and charismatic presence raised his profile. In a meteoric rise, while he was still in his 20s, Onwuachi accepted an offer to create a tasting-menu restaurant in Washington, D.C., which opened in the fall of 2016. The restaurant, the Shaw Bijou, didn’t make it to three months. Onwuachi describes that time as being “gutted personally, my life upended, but I was gutted emotionally, too.” He had launched his kitchen in D.C. as an extension of himself, each dish a story reflecting his own personal journey. When the public didn’t respond to that vision by making it a success, he internalized it as a personal rejection. But it was by no means the end of Onwuachi’s story. He realized that his next step was to honor his own story by broadening it to what he called “my kith, my kin.” For his next menu, he called on recipes from his mother and maternal grandmother, dishes from his Trinidadian grandfather Papa Winston, and curries and stews from his Jamaican grandma, Gloria. He spent countless hours on the phone with relatives, weaving together the tapestry of his family heritage through the complicated sensory stories of food. fall 2022 real food 53

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I grew up eating Nigerian Jollof Rice, a recipe from my father’s side of the family, and Creole jambalaya, one from my mother’s. So for me the two were always interconnected. Both are one-pot rice-based dishes, colored and flavored by the addition of tomatoes and brought to life with a similar spice profile. Jambalaya, however, hails from Louisiana, where many Africans worked the rice fields the two continents shared. They brought with them not just the knowledge of how to grow but also how to prepare rice. Once in Louisiana, proto-jollof incorporated whatever proteins were available: andouille sausage, abundant shrimp from coastal waters, and chicken, another economical choice. Also added were influences from the Spanish settlers who yearned for the paella of their home, and the French, the masters of roux. Now jambalaya sits at the heart of Creole cuisine. … Meaty, filling, comforting, jambalaya reminds me of both my childhood and my ancestral home. 1½ cups jasmine rice 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil, plus more as needed ¾ pound andouille sausage, sliced into ¼-inch-thick coins 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes 1½ teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste 2 tablespoons House Spice, plus more to taste (see recipe below) 1 pound large (16-20 size) shrimp, tail on, peeled, and deveined 5 garlic cloves, minced 1 medium yellow onion, diced 1 red bell pepper, diced 1. Rinse the rice in cool water until the water runs clear, then set aside. 2. In a large Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the sausage and brown on all sides, 2 minutes per side, then remove to a plate and reserve for later. 3. While the sausage browns, season the chicken on all sides with salt and house spice. Once you’ve removed the sausage, add the chicken to the pot and sear until deep golden brown on both sides, 4 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and reserve for later. 4. While the chicken browns, season the shrimp all over with salt and house spice. Once you’ve removed the chicken, add another tablespoon of oil if the pot seems dry, then add the shrimp. Sear the shrimp until deep golden brown on both sides, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and reserve for later. 5. Heat the oven to 350°F. Decrease the heat on the stove to medium. Add another tablespoon of oil if the pot seems dry, then add the garlic. Sauté until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes, then add the onions, bell peppers, and celery. Sauté until tender, 8 to

2 1 4 2 3 2 2 1¼ 1¼ 2 4

stalks celery, diced (14-ounce) can crushed tomatoes fresh thyme sprigs teaspoons dried oregano fresh bay leaves tablespoons Louisiana-style hot sauce (see Editor’s Note) teaspoons Worcestershire sauce cups chicken stock (see Editor’s Note) cups shrimp stock (see Editor’s Note) tablespoons roughly chopped fresh parsley tablespoons sliced green onion

10 minutes, then add the crushed tomatoes, oregano, bay leaves, thyme, hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and 2 tablespoons house spice. Return the andouille and chicken to the pot and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. 6. Add the rice and stir frequently for 5 minutes, until toasty. Add the chicken and shrimp stocks and 1 teaspoon salt, then increase heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring frequently. Once boiling, remove from the heat, cover tightly, and place in the oven for 18 minutes. 7. Remove the jambalaya from the oven and let rest, covered, for 5 minutes, then uncover and fluff gently with a fork and fold in the shrimp. Let it sit uncovered for 5 minutes more before folding in the parsley and green onions. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt, house spice, and hot sauce. Editor’s Note: For the Louisiana-style hot sauce, chicken stock, and shrimp stock, Onwuachi makes his own from scratch for this recipe. You can substitute store-bought. For shrimp stock, you could use seafood stock. These recipes are available in the book.


Nearly every kitchen I’ve been to in that stretch of Louisiana and Texas known as the Creole Coast has, somewhere in it, a jar of house spice. … This version is based on my mom’s but kicked up a notch with Worcestershire powder for a touch of acidity and umami. ½ cup + 2 tablespoons kosher salt ¾ cup + 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper ½ cup + 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons granulated garlic ¼ cup + 3 tablespoons + 1½ teaspoons granulated onion ½ cup Worcestershire powder 5 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons cayenne 5 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons sweet paprika Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and whisk well to combine. [This will keep in an airtight container in a cool, dark place up to four months.]

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“I began to see how interconnected these diasporic cuisines are,” Onwuachi writes in “My America.” “They are not islands but part of the same river. I saw diasporic cuisine as a writhing, thriving, living thing. I saw jollof and jambalaya as two traditions that fed Africans in vastly different circumstances. I heard the echoes of the one-pot stews of Nigeria in the one-pot stews of the American South. I saw the twined influences of East Indians and West Africans in the Indies.” He explored these connections at Kith and Kin, a successful restaurant also in Washington, D.C. He had evolved from a version of the high-end culinary school world to a synchronous amalgam of the personal and the universal: the flavors and stories of untold millions who have been forgotten, their memory imprinted in flavors, sights, and smells. Having Fun While He’s Here

Onwuachi divides his time today between New York and Los Angeles, and his 35th birthday is still a few years away. While he’s focused on promoting “My America,” he anticipates a return to the professional kitchen sooner than later. “I’m a restaurant guy. Definitely,” he says. “I love telling a story and creating an experience for people. The quality of the food is a prerequisite, of course, but it’s also important to create a place where people can think and celebrate—whether it’s a different culture or their own culture. That’s so important, and it’s why I do what I do.” This 2019 James Beard Rising Star Chef Award winner is also interested in pursuing acting, and his opportunities include a small role in the film adaptation of his 2019 memoir, “Notes from a Young Black Chef.” It’s slated to be released this fall, and Onwuachi is



“We’re more similar than we are different— and you can show that with food. You can cross an ocean on a single plate.” —KWAME ONWUACHI

palpably excited by the prospect of reaching an even wider audience with his story—and to get in front of the camera himself. “I acted in school theater when I was growing up,” he says. “I was in all the plays. I always played the lead, and I took it very, very seriously. It’s always been a passion for me.” For now, he’s happiest to be telling stories in the pages of his cookbook, which he calls a “love letter to those who made it here, made me here . . . ‘My America’ is for my mom and her people, my dad and his. It’s a land that belongs to you and yours and to me and mine.” Indeed, Onwuachi’s book is so inviting, so authentic in both the complexity and simplicity of its stories and connections, that it finds the beating heart of the commonality that unites all of us alongside the particulars of our backgrounds and our heritage. “We’re more similar than we are different,” Onwuachi says. “And you can show that with food. You can cross an ocean on a single plate. Most nations have their rice dishes, most countries like to grill meat, everyone has their stews. So, we’re all similar in that way. At the end of the day, we need to come together with that—and not judge each other so much.” Onwuachi’s next steps seem wide open, and for someone who’s enjoyed success and endured failure, he’s moving ever toward what seems authentic and enlivening. And he’s learned about what he wants to avoid: being pinned down to a single role or a fixed image of what he can become. “I want to stay multidimensional,” he says. “I don’t believe in putting myself in a box just because some people want you to be there. If they label you as something, that doesn’t mean you have to stay in that lane. That’s why I created my own nail polish, and I have a spice line, and I have an apron line. It’s all because I just want to be a citizen of the world. And because I want to have fun while I’m here.” n fall 2022 real food 55

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Crisp Sips Hard cider brings a fresh taste to the table. BY MARY SUBIALKA


our a deliciously different glass of hard cider rather than wine or beer the next time you’re looking for a dinner partner. Today’s ciders can be complex and range from dry and bold to sweet, tart, and tangy to suit many tastes and palates. Traditional English-style cider, for example, which is made from bittersweet fruit, has a more mouth-drying astringency and a complex matured cider character. Some ciders may blend snacking apples and traditional cidermaking apples for a sweet-tart balance of flavors, while other ciders are made with green apples for a slightly more tart profile. There are also hard ciders made from pears that offer a more delicate sweetness. And no matter the style, since hard cider is made from fruit, it’s naturally gluten-free. Very cold temperature can mask the flavors in hard cider, so rather than drinking it ice cold, remove it from the fridge and let it sit for five minutes—and it’s best poured into a glass to enhance the aromas. Then enjoy the lighter, sweet ciders with salads, tarts, and fruits. Its sweet freshness balances salty and savory charcuterie and cheese, especially Brie, Camembert, cheddar, aged Gouda, Gruyere, Muenster, or a mellow blue cheese. Its fruity character also complements seafood such as crab, oysters, and white fish or salmon. At brunch, switch out mimosas for hard cider with your quiche Lorraine. Cider is a tasty complement with chicken, especially roasted or in casseroles, pork dishes, sausages, turkey, and ham. However, beef steaks may overpower the cider’s flavor. Cozy up with cider and a bowl of butternut squash soup or creamy chicken soup. The full-bodied ciders work well with rich dishes such as stews, curries, and those prepared with sage and cinnamon. Top off your meal with a slice of apple pie or cinnamon sugar doughnuts and raise your glass of cider to trying new pairings. n PHOTOGRAPHY TERRY BRENNAN FOOD STYLING LARA MIKLASEVICS

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