Corn Chowder with Sweet Italian Pepper & Onion

Fresh sage and a hint of red pepper give this sweet chowder just a subtle hint of spice.

Ingredients:
4 ears of corn shucked
1 sweet onion, peeled and diced
2 sweet Italian peppers, seeded and diced
4 cups vegetable or corn stock
6 fresh sage leaves, chopped
Pinch red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons olive oil
Sea salt

Method:
1. Preheat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat, then place the ears of corn directly on the grates and grill, 8-10 minutes, rotating occasionally, until the cobs are slightly charred. Remove and allow to cool, then shuck the kernels from the cobs using a sharp kitchen knife. Set aside.

2. Heat the oil in a 4-quart pot until shimmering. Add the onion and peppers and sauté until lightly tender, 2-3 minutes. Add the corn (reserving a small handful for garnish), sage and chile pepper flakes; sauté for 1 minute. Season with salt to taste. Stir in the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until vegetables are all tender, about 5 minutes.

2. Carefully pour half the mixture into a blender and purée until smooth (remember the soup is hot, so be careful). Stir the puréed mixture back into the pot with the remaining soup. Taste the soup and add more salt, if desired. Ladle into bowls, garnish with a few chile flakes and grilled corn kernels and serve hot.

Fall Vegetable Frittata with Duck Eggs

Packed with fingerling potatoes, sweet peppers and Grana-style cheese, this easy frittata boasts incredibly fresh flavor.

Ingredients:
6 duck eggs
1 pint fingerling potatoes, washed and thinly-sliced
2 sweet peppers, washed, seeded and chopped
2 leeks, trimmed and thinly-sliced
1 cup spinach leaves, torn into bite-sized pieces
1 clove garlic
½ cup grated Grana-style cheese
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. Preheat the oven to 375°.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Add the sliced potatoes to the skillet and sauté for about 6 to 8 minutes, until tender but firm. Remove from the skillet. Add another tablespoon of oil, then add the peppers, leeks, spinach and garlic. Sauté for an additional 1 to 2 minutes or until the greens are just wilted. Season vegetables with salt and pepper. Remove from the skillet.

3. In a medium bowl, beat together the eggs, cheese and thyme with a pinch of salt and pepper. Return the potatoes to the skillet, arranging in an even layer. Top with vegetable mixture and then pour eggs evenly over the vegetables. Drizzle olive oil around the edge of the pan to ensure easy removal.

4. Transfer to the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes, until the eggs have completely set in the center. Serve straight out of the skillet, cut into wedges, or flip onto a serving plate.

Italian Sausage Pasta with Kale & Peppers

Everyone will be asking for seconds of this colorful and extremely satisfying dish.

Ingredients:
1 pound fresh pasta of your choice, such as this week’s gemelli
2-3 Jimmy Nardello peppers, seeded and chopped
1 Walla Walla sweet onion
1 bunch Lacinato kale, greens removed from tough rib ends and then roughly chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons freshly-chopped parsley
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus an additional tablespoon for finishing
Grana-style cheese, grated
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. Cook the pasta for 5-7 minutes in a pot of heavily salted water until al dente, or just cooked through with a bit of bite left. Reserve about ½ cup of the pasta water, then drain, and set aside.

2. Meanwhile, cook the Italian sausage in a large skillet over medium-high heat until no longer pink, breaking the sausage apart with a wooden spoon or spatula. Remove the sausage to a plate and set aside.

3. Wipe any excess grease from the skillet with a paper towel, then drizzle in 2 tablespoons olive oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add in garlic, peppers and onions and sauté until all the veggies are tender and beginning to brown, about 5-7 minutes. Add in the chopped kale and continue to sauté, stirring until the kale is just wilted.

3. Add the pasta and sausage to the skillet and toss to combine with the veggies; season with salt and pepper as necessary. If the pasta seems a little dry, moisten with the reserved pasta water. Finish by sprinkling each serving with grated Grana-style cheese and an additional swirl of olive oil.

Baked Cinnamon-Raisin French Toast

This homey recipe from The Pioneer Woman can easily be done a day ahead and chilled until ready to bake.

Ingredients:
1 loaf cinnamon raisin bread
Butter, for greasing the baking pan
8 whole eggs
2 cups whole milk
½ cup heavy cream
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
Topping:
8 tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces
½ cup flour
½ cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup raisins

Method:
1. Cut bread into ¼-inch slices, then overlap the slices in rows in a well-buttered baking dish. Whisk together the eggs, milk, cream, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon, then pour the mixture evenly over all the pieces of bread, soaking the bread as much as possible.

2. To make the topping, combine the butter, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl and cut it all together with a pastry cutter. Stir in the raisins. Sprinkle the topping all over the casserole. Cover the pan with foil and refrigerate it for several hours or overnight.

3. Preheat the oven to 350°. Bake the French toast for 45 minutes to 1 hour for a softer texture, or longer for a firmer, crisper texture. Cover with foil for the first 30 minute of baking, then remove it for the remaining baking time. Serve individual helpings with butter and warm syrup

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