Roasted Squash Salad, Grass-fed Beef Chili, Devil's Food Cupcakes & More

October 25, 2021

Dear Friends, Family & Neighbors,

Squash: it's all around you. You may as well embrace it? Check out this week's Autumn Salad Kit: you're going to take some local acorn squash, cut it into wedges, roast it at 425 with a little salt, pepper, and olive oil, and display dramatically on your favorite platter. Next, take Holly Hill Farm's beautiful organic baby kale, dress it with the included cider vinaigrette, and add pomegranate arils. Toss, and then place it attractively all over the warm, roasted squash. Finally, scatter the spiced pepitas all over everything.

This salad would be an excellent vegetarian main meal with a little side of cheese and some baguette. It would also go spectacularly with our za'atar rubbed half-chicken, which could roast at the same time and temperature as the acorn squash. You know what else would work here? A sprinkle of cotija cheese. Stop me before I keep finding new pairings.

Swordfish with Vadouvan and Caper-Raisin vinaigrette: the swordfish is rubbed with a lovely blend of curry, shallots & garlic, ready to sauté, plus a vinaigrette made from capers, Forum red wine vinegar, garlic, parsley, and extra virgin olive oil. This should definitely be served with a vegetable: the classic accompaniment is roasted cauliflower-the curry and caper-raisin vin will really bring out the best in this vegetable.

Another option: just get some caper raisin vinaigrette, roast up some Brussels sprouts or broccoli- go ahead and use a hot oven and get them a little charred in places- then dress liberally with this vinaigrette. So tasty.

Guest chef Tina Conte is here this week, making two types of chili: one traditional with grass-feed ground beef and red beans, the other vegetarian-style with butternut squash and black beans. I've had both many times over the years, and I love them both, so I'll be getting one for now and one to put in the freezer for a rainy day. Pair either one with a wedge of cornbread- we do it right, in a cast-iron skillet- and top with your favorite toppings. Around my house, favorites include shredded Shelburne Farms cheddar, thinly sliced scallions, we skip the sour cream and do dollops of Greek yogurt, crushed tortilla chips, and of course, the cornbread. If I don't have or want cornbread, I'll usually put it over some short pasta- and the cavatelli we have this week would do nicely. This would be an especially easy and nice meal for Halloween weekend if you have kid stuff going on, since you don't have to cook anything, and it's warming after you've been outside for hours.

Treat yourself: Halloween Cupcakes: Devil's Food & Espresso Cupcakes with Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting. How is this a Halloween dessert? It doesn't matter: let the kids eat the candy and get this for yourself. Okay, okay- we also made the frosting orange and dusted it with glittery sanding sugar.

See you soon,

Alison & The Team at Peggotty Provisions

Alison Hearn

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with customization by Grapevine Local Food Marketing