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Winter Recpies

Winter Recipes

Roasted Garlic Green Beans with Cashews
Virginia Sturm

10 garlic cloves, unpeeled
2 tsp. plus ¼ cup olive oil, divided
2 lbs. fresh green beans, trimmed
1 cup water
1 cup lightly salted cashews, coarsely chopped
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut stem ends off unpeeled garlic cloves. Place cloves on a piece of foil. Drizzle with 2 tsp. oil; wrap in foil. Bake 25-30 minutes or until cloves are soft. Unwrap and cool slightly. Squeeze garlic from skins; mash with a fork to form a paste.
2. In a Dutch oven, heat remaining oil over medium-high heat. Add green beans and garlic; cook and stir 2-3 minutes. Add water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 7-10 minutes or until beans are crisp-tender and water is almost evaporated, stirring occasionally. Add cashews, salt and pepper; toss to combine.

Baked Parmesan-Breaded Squash
Taste of Home

4 cups thinly sliced yellow summer squash (3 medium)
3 Tbsp. olive oil
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
¾ cup panko (Japanese) bread crumbs
¾ cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place squash in a large bowl. Add oil and seasonings; toss to coat.
2. In a shallow bowl, mix bread crumbs and cheese. Dip squash in crumb mixture to coat both sides, patting to help coating adhere. Place on parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown, rotating pans halfway through baking.

Zucchini-Parmesan Bake
Shannon Davis

3 eggs
½ cup canola oil
3 cups shredded zucchini (about 1 lb.)
1 cup reduced-fat biscuit/baking mix
½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, whisk eggs and oil until blended. Stir in remaining ingredients.
2. Transfer mixture to a greased 10-in. ovenproof skillet. Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

Zucchini Fritters with Thyme
“Dishing Up Maryland” cookbook

¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
2 eggs, beaten
¼ cup milk
2 medium zucchini
2 Tbsp. fresh thyme
1 tsp. hot pepper flakes
½ tsp. salt
1 cup vegetable oil

1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Combine the flour and baking powder in a medium bowl. Make a well in the flour mixture, pour the beaten eggs into the well, and gradually incorporate the dry ingredients into the eggs. Add the milk and stir to make a thick batter.
2. Grate the zucchini and drain it in a paper towel-lined colander for 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, thyme, pepper flakes, and salt to the batter, and mix well.
3. Heat the oil in a large skillet until hot but not smoking. Drop the batter by the tablespoon into the hot oil. Fry for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Remove the fritters from the oil and drain on a paper towel. Transfer the fritters to the oven to keep them warm. Repeat the process until all of the batter has been used. Serve immediately.

California Quinoa
Elizabeth Lubin

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 cup quinoa, rinsed and well drained
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium zucchini, chopped
2 cups water
¾ cup garbanzo beans or chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 medium tomato, finely chopped
½ cup crumbled feta cheese
¼ cup finely chopped Greek olives
2 Tbsp. minced fresh basil
¼ tsp. pepper

In a large saucepan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add quinoa and garlic; cook and stir for 2-3 minutes or until quinoa is lightly browned. Stir in zucchini and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, for 12-15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Stir in the remaining ingredients; heat through.

Browned Butter Roasted Cauliflower
Taste of Home magazine

6 garlic cloves, unpeeled
3 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 medium head cauliflower, broken into florets
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
¼ cup golden raisins
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp. capers, drained and coarsely chopped
2 tsp. lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut stem ends off unpeeled garlic cloves. Wrap cloves in a piece of foil. Bake 25-30 minutes or until cloves are soft. Unwrap and cool to room temperature. Squeeze garlic from skins. Mash with a fork.
2. Meanwhile, in a small heavy saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Heat 5-7 minutes or until golden brown, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
3. Place cauliflower florets in a greased 15 x 10 x 1 –in. baking pan. Drizzle with browned butter; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast 15-20 minutes or until cauliflower is golden brown and tender.
4. Transfer to a bowl. Add remaining ingredients and roasted garlic; toss well to combine.

Cauliflower Crust Pizza- One of our favorites!!!
Paula Deen recipe

2 ½ cups grated cauliflower (about ½ large head)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup shredded part skim mozzarella
2 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup homemade or store bought tomato sauce
½ cup shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
1 cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half
2 cloves garlic, sliced
¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
¼ cup basil leaves, for garnish

1. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Grate the cauliflower using a box grater until you have 2 cups cauliflower crumbles. Place in a large bowl and microwave for 7-8 minute, or until soften. Remove and let cool. Mix in the egg, mozzarella, Parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper. Once combined, pat into a 10-inch round on the prepared pizza pan. Spray lightly with non-stick spray and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until golden.
3. Top the pizza with the sauce, mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Bake in the oven until melted and bubbly, another 10 minutes. Top with basil before serving.

Baba Ganoush (a savory spread)
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

3 large globe eggplants
½ cup tahini (sesame paste)
1 tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
3 large garlic cloves, peeled
2 Tbsp. olive oil
¼ cup finely chopped Italian parsley

1. Preheat the oven to 45o degrees. Prick the eggplants in several places and place them on a large baking sheet. Bake the eggplants for 30 minutes, until they are very soft. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool for 15 minutes.
2. Cut the eggplants in half. Discard any water and then scoop out the flesh. Transfer the flesh to a food processor or blender. Add the tahini, salt, lemon juice, garlic, and olive oil. Process until smooth. Transfer to a serving dish and add the parsley, stirring to incorporate it. Serve at room temperature. Good with crackers or soft or toasted pita bread.

Savory Summer Ratatouille with Couscous
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

1 large eggplant
2 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
2 small zucchini, quartered and cut into 1-inch pieces
3 cups diced fresh tomatoes
2 tsp. chopped fresh basil or 1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. fresh rosemary leaves or ½ tsp. dried rosemary
1 tsp. chopped fresh oregano or ½ tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves or ½ tsp dried thyme
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 ½ cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 Tbsp. butter
2 ½ cups couscous, preferably tomato or spinach variety

1. Cut the eggplant into 2-in. cubes and transfer it to a paper towel-lined colander. Sprinkle with 1 tsp. of the salt and leave it to drain for 30 minutes.
2. Heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet. Add the onion and garlic, and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes over medium to low heat, until soft. Add the eggplant and stir to distribute the oil, then cover. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Add the zucchini, tomatoes, basil, rosemary, oregano, thyme, pepper, and the remaining teaspoon salt. Stir, cover, and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes, until the eggplant and zucchini are tender, but not mushy.
4. Fill a medium saucepan with the broth, add the butter, and bring to a boil. Remove the saucepan from the heat, add the couscous, stir, cover, and set aside for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Serve immediately with the ratatouille.

Caraway Coleslaw with Citrus Mayonnaise
Lillian Julow

1 medium head cabbage, finely shredded
1 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. salt

2/3 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
1/3 cup orange juice
3 Tbsp. cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. caraway seeds
2 tsp. grated orange peel
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper

1. Place cabbage in a colander over a plate. Sprinkle with sugar and salt; toss to coat. Let stand 1 hour.
2. In a small bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients until blended.
3. Rinse cabbage and drain well; place in a large bowl. Add dressing; toss to coat. Refrigerate, covered, overnight.

Cabbage Stir-fry with Caraway Seeds
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

4 Tbsp. butter
1 small onion, peeled and minced
1 small green cabbage, cored and thinly sliced
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 Tbsp. caraway seeds
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Melt the butter over low heat in a skillet. Add the onion and sauté for 3 – 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Add the cabbage and sauté for 5 minutes longer, then add the broth and turn the heat up to medium-high. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Uncover and continue cooking until the broth is absorbed. Add the caraway seeds, salt, and pepper, and toss well. Remove the cabbage from the heat and serve immediately.

Basil Corn and Tomato Bake
Erin Chilcoat

2 tsp. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 eggs
1 can (10 ¾ oz.) reduced-fat reduced sodium condensed cream of celery soup, undiluted
4 cups fresh or frozen corn
1 small zucchini, chopped
1 tomato, seeded and chopped
¾ cup soft whole wheat bread crumbs
1/3 cup minced fresh basil, plus additional for topping
½ tsp. salt
½ cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion; cook and stir until tender. In a large bowl, whisk eggs and condensed soup until blended. Stir in vegetables, bread crumbs, 1/3 cup basil, salt and onion. Transfer mixture to an 11 x 7 in. baking dish coated with cooking spray.
2. Bake vegetables, uncovered, 40-45 minutes or until bubbly. Top with cheese. Bake 5-10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Let stand 10 minutes before serving. If desired, sprinkle with additional fresh basil.

Corn and Quinoa Salad with Lemony Mint Dressing
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

4 ears corn
1 cup quinoa, rinsed well
1 tsp. salt
4 scallions, white and tender green parts, thinly sliced then chopped
½ cup fresh mint leaves, cut into thin ribbons then chopped
1 Tbsp. lemon zest
¼ cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp. honey
¼ cup olive oil
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1. Steam or roast the corn. Let cool slightly. Cut the corn from the cobs with a sharp knife. Put the corn into a large bowl.
2. Combine the quinoa with 2 cups water and ½ tsp. of the salt in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until all of the water has been absorbed. Remove from the heat, fluff, and set aside for 5 minutes.
3. Add the scallions and the mint to the roasted corn. Add the quinoa, the remaining ½ tsp. salt, the lemon zest, lemon juice, honey, olive oil, and pepper, and toss well. Cover and allow the salad to marinate for at least 2 hours before serving.

Apple Bread
Colora Orchards

½ cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup sugar
1 egg
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. ground cloves
½ tsp. salt
2 cups chopped apples
2/3 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9 x 5 – in. loaf pan.
2. Cream together the butter and sugar using an electric mixer. Add the egg and beat well.
3. Sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, cloves, and salt, then add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture.
4. Stir in the apples and pecans. The batter will be extremely thick.
5. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for 1 hour, until a knife blade inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
6. Remove the cake from the oven and cool for 10 minutes in the pan. Remove the cake from the pan and cool on a wire rack.

Baked Corn with Swiss Cheese
Baugher’s Farm

4 cups fresh or frozen corn, thawed
4 oz. Swiss cheese, shredded (1 cup)
2/3 cup evaporated milk
1 egg, beaten
2 Tbsp. chopped onion
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 cup soft bread cubes
½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 2 quart baking dish. Combine the corn, ¾ cup of the cheese, the evaporated milk, egg, onion, salt, and pepper in a bowl, and toss until blended. Turn the mixture into the baking dish.
2. Combine the bread cubes with the melted butter and the remaining ¼ cup cheese. Sprinkle the bread mixture over the corn mixture. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Serve immediately.

Mrs. Balderston’s Streusel Cream Peach Pie
Colora Orchards

1 (9-inch) piecrust
8-10 ripe peaches, peeled, halved, and pitted
½ cup sugar
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1 egg
2 Tbsp. heavy cream
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
4 Tbsp. butter, cut into tiny pieces

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Roll out the piecrust and fit it into a 10-inch pie plate.
2. Line the piecrust with the peach halves, pit side up, in concentric circles. (You will need to lean the peach halves against each other, almost standing them up.) Sprinkle the sugar and the nutmeg over the fruit. Beat the egg and the cream together and pour over the peaches.
3. Mix the brown sugar, flour, and butter in a bowl until crumbly. Crumble the mixture over the peaches. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until nicely browned. Cool before serving.

Strawberry Shortcake with Biscuits
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

½ cup sugar
2 quarts strawberries, hulled and cut in half
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. lemon zest
¼ tsp. salt
6 Tbsp. cold butter, cut into small pieces
1 egg
½ cup half-and-half
1 pint whipping cream

1. Sprinkle 3 Tbsp. of the sugar on top of the strawberries and toss. Cover and macerate for 1 hour.
2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Combine the flour, 3 tablespoons of the remaining sugar, the baking powder, lemon zest, and salt in a large bowl and mix will. Add the butter, cutting it in until the mixture is crumbly.
3. Whisk together the egg and the half-and-half in a small bowl until blended. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and stir until moist. Turn out the dough onto a floured surface and knead it three times. Roll out the dough to a ½ inch thickness and, using a biscuit cutter, cut out 6 biscuits. Bake them on an ungreased baking sheet for 10 minutes, until golden brown.
4. Combine the cream and the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar in a chilled bowl. Whip with a whisk or electric mixer until soft peaks form.
5. Split the biscuits and spoon strawberries over them. Top with whipped cream and serve warm.

Asparagus Salad with Spring Onions and Orange-Lemon Dressing
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

2 lbs. asparagus, trimmed
2 oranges
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 spring onions, finely chopped
2 shallots, peeled and minced
¼ cup olive oil
2 Tbsp. white wine vinegar
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1. Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Steam the asparagus in a steamer over the boiling water for 5 minutes, and then remove immediately and plunge the asparagus into a bowl of ice water. Drain the asparagus, pat dry, transfer to a serving dish, and refrigerate.
2. Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil. Use a zester to remove the zest from the oranges in long, thin strips. Boil the zest for 2 minutes, and then drain it and plunge it into cold water. Drain the zest, and then plunge into cold water again. Finally, drain the zest and pat dry. This process will remove much of the bitterness.
3. Juice the zested oranges. Combine ½ cup orange juice with the lemon juice, onions, shallots, and orange zest. Whisk in the olive oil and vinegar; season with the salt and pepper. Let the dressing stand for 15 minutes to allow the flavors mingle.
4. Remove the asparagus from the refrigerator and pour the dressing over the dish. Serve immediately.

Pasta Primavera with Baby Vegetables and Fresh Herbs
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

½ cup shelled fresh peas
½ cup baby carrots, peeled, sliced lengthwise and halved
½ cup sliced yellow squash
½ cup sliced zucchini
2 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 cup half-and-half
¾ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. freshly ground pepper
1 lb/ fresh fettuccine
3 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh basil
1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh chives

1. Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Steam the peas, carrots, squash, and zucchini on a steamer rack set over the boiling water for 4 minutes. Remove the vegetables from the steamer and set them aside. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta.
2. Melt the butter in a large skillet over low heat, and then whisk in the flour, cooking and stirring until the mixture is smooth and bubbling. Add the half-and-half slowly, continuing to cook and stir until the sauce is smooth and thick. Add ½ cup of the Parmesan, the steamed vegetables, and the salt and pepper, and heat through.
3. Add the fettuccine to the boiling water and cook for 3 minutes. Drain the pasta and transfer it to a large serving bowl. Top the pasta with the creamy vegetable sauce, basil, and chives, tossing until well mixed. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan and serve.

Long Island Cheese Pumpkins – I strongly recommend this variety of pumpkin for baking, roasting, stewing , custards, and pies. It is technically not a pumpkin, rather a member of the moshata squash family (same family as butternut squash). The flesh is dense, smooth and has a wonderful flavor. I far prefer it to regular pumpkins, in which the flesh can be stringy and watery.

At the end of the season, I roast several of the pumpkins, scoop out the flesh and freeze it in 2 – 2 /12 cup portions in freezer bags. Then during the “off-season”, I simply take a bag out of the freezer, thaw, drain some, and make wonderful bread, muffins, and pies.

Pumpkin Pie

2 cups pumpkin
2 eggs
1 can evaporated milk
¾ cup sugar
½ tsp. ginger
¼ tsp. cloves
½ tsp. salt
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
1 deep unbaked pie crust

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Mix together the pumpkin, sugar, spices, eggs, and evaporated milk. Pour into the unbaked pie shell. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on your oven and the depth of your pie. Check for firmness toward the end of the baking time (you want a firm custard), but don’t let the pumpkin filling overcook or scorch.

Downeast Maine Pumpkin Bread
We absolutely love this. The recipe makes several loaves, so freeze them and pull them out as needed.

2 cups pumpkin (or 1 can pumpkin puree)
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil 2/3 cup water
3 cups sugar
3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 ½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground nutmeg
½ tsp. ground cloves
¼ tsp. ground ginger

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour three 7 x 3 loaf pans.
2. In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin, eggs, oil, water, and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger.
Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into prepared. Pans.
3. Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Pumpkin Muffins

2 cups pumpkin
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. ground cloves
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 tsp. ground allspice
1 tsp. salt
2/3 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 12 muffin cups (or line with paper muffin liners). (I find that this recipe makes around 16 – 18 muffins.
2. In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and salt. In a separate bowl, beat together pumpkin, vegetable oil, and eggs. Stir pumpkin mixture into flour mixture until smooth. Scoop batter into prepared muffin cups.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 20 – 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Pumpkin Chiffon Cheesecake
This is a wonderfully light cheesecake recipe developed by my very good friend, Aimee O’Neill. She served it at a dinner party and I immediately knew this was a “must have” recipe.

10 “Spring Form Pan
Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Graham Cracker Crumb Crust
½ cup (1 stick) butter – melted
1 pkg. graham crackers- 9 – 10 full-sized crackers (some recipes add flour or cinnamon or both – I don’t)

What to do:
1. Crush graham crackers. Tip: Use a quart-sized freezer bag, put crackers in the bag and then mash with a rolling pin until finely crushed.
2. Mix with butter.
3. Press into the bottom of the spring form pan
4. Bake in preheated oven – 10 minutes or so.

Cheesecake Filling

(3) 8 oz. packages cream cheese
½ to ¾ cups sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups prepared pumpkin (cooked, mashed, and strained, or canned)
1 ½ tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
¼ tsp. ground cloves
6 egg whites

What to do:

1. Combine all ingredients except egg whites and mix until creamy and well blended. Tip: If using fresh pumpkin be sure to press all extra water out of it.
2. Whip the egg whites in a separate, chilled bowl, until stiff.
3. Fold egg whites into pumpkin mix.
4. Pour into baked graham cracker crust
5. Bake in heated oven (375 degrees) for 15 minutes.
6. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and bake for another hour or so, until set.
7. Chill and serve chilled.

Tangy Sweet Potato Fries

Cooking Spray
3 large sweet potatoes, cut into wedges
½ cup zesty Italian salad dressing
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp. garlic powder
Cracked black pepper, or to taste
1 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
3. Mix sweet potato wedges, Italian dressing, ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, and garlic powder together in a bowl until sweet potatoes are evenly coated. Season with black pepper.
4. Arrange potato wedges on the prepared baking sheet.
5. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes, then flip potatoes over; continue baking until easily pierced with a fork, 15 to 20 minutes more.
6. Sprinkle sweet potato fries with the remaining 1 Tbsp. Parmesan cheese to serve.

Sweet Potato Casserole with Toasted Pecan Topping
“Dishing Up Maryland” Cookbook

6-8 large sweet potatoes
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
¾ cup milk, heated
1 Tbsp. vanilla
½ tsp. salt
2 cups pecan halves
1 cup brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Prick the sweet potatoes and place them on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 1 hour or until soft. Remove the sweet potatoes from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees.
2. Cut the sweet potatoes open, scoop out all the flesh, and spoon it into a large mixing bowl. Add 1 stick of the butter, the warm milk, vanilla, and salt. Beat the sweet potato mixture with an electric mixer on low speed until the butter is melted and the mixture is smooth and creamy. Butter a large baking dish and spoon the sweet potato mixture into it. Cover with aluminum foil and place it in the oven. Bake for 25 minutes.
3. While the casserole is baking, make the topping: Melt the remaining 1 stick butter in the microwave and let it cool for 5 minutes. Mix the pecans, brown sugar, and flour together with the melted butter.
4. Remove the casserole and return it to the oven, uncovered. Bake 15 minutes longer. Serve immediately.

Roasted Butternut Tossed Salad
Katie Wollgast

4 cups cubed peeled butternut squash (about 1 lb.)
1 large onion, chopped
1 Tbsp. honey
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. pepper
1 pkg. (6 oz.) fresh baby spinach
2 cups coarsely chopped iceberg lettuce
½ cup shredded fat-free cheddar cheese
6 Tbsp. reduced-fat poppy seed salad dressing, divided
½ cup seasoned stuffing cubes
½ cup dried cranberries
¼ cup slivered almonds, toasted
4 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, toss squash and onion with honey, salt, garlic powder and pepper. Transfer to a 15 x 10 x 1 baking pan coated with cooking spray. Bake 20 – 25 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring once. Cool slightly.
2. In another bowl, combine spinach, lettuce, cheese and squash mixture. Just before serving, drizzle with 4 Tbsp. dressing and toss to coat. Divide salad among eight plates; top with stuffing cubes, cranberries, almonds, and bacon. Drizzle with remaining dressing.
Cream of Broccoli Soup with Parmesan Cheese

3 Tbsp. butter
4 shallots, peeled and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely minced
1 bay leaf
6 cups broccoli, cut into small pieces
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth.
1 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
2 cups milk
½ cup sour cream
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

1. Melt the butter in a stockpot over low heat. Add the shallots, garlic, and bay leaf, and sauté until the shallots are translucent. Add the broccoli, stock, salt, and pepper. Cook for 15 minutes over low to medium heat.
2. Remove the soup from the heat and remove the bay leaf. Puree the soup with the milk in small batches in a blender. Return the soup to the pot heat gently. Whisk in the sour cream and Parmesan, stirring until the cheese has melted. Serve immediately.

Freezing Herbs – If you grow herbs, or buy them and have leftover, you may want to consider this tip from my good friend, Aimee O’Neill about freezing herbs. She writes:

“Because I have been unsuccessful in properly drying herbs (me, too), I tried placing clean, fresh green herbs in glass jars or bags and freezing them. I have frozen basil, oregano, chives, parsley, and cilantro, but I expect that it will work equally well with other herbs. When you want a bit of the herb, just break it out of the frozen mix. The flavor is near that of the fresh herb! Lovely!”