Wednesday, August 1, 2012

"I get by with a little help from my friends...." (Week 31)

Where would we all be without the help of ourfriends?  The same is true for me....and my food blog!  Months ago, Iput the call out to a few of my followers to weigh in on what's fresh andlocal intheir area.  Of my 14 followers (and countless others who lookin from time to time), I had only one contribution (Thanks Robyn) but it wasfrom my beautiful San Joaquin Valley.  This isn't a problem at all (I am ahuge fan of our produce) but I was hoping for something a tad moreexotic.

My, my......I am happy to pass along a "share" from oneof my dear friends who lives in Alaska.  It has been years since we haveshared a meal but I do recall she ROCKS in the kitchen.  She also provided the Chili Verde recipe from a few months back but it was low on local produce.  Today, I am truly getttin' by with the help of my friends....Katrina just moved to a new residence in Alaska.  Her prior home had the curse of the black thumb and she didn't have the good fortune she has in her new abode.  This good fortune has resulted in a bumper cropof rhubarb.
Rhubarb CustardBars

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, 1 stick, room temperature

1 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tbsp flour
4 eggs beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
4-5 cups rhubarb
1 c. sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.Spray a 9x13 inch pan with cooking spray.
Crust: blend flour & sugar together, then cut in the butter with a fork orpastry blender. Press crust into a 9x13 inch baking pan that has been sprayedwith a cooking spray. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned. Preparefilling while crust is baking.

Filling: in a large mixing bowl blend sugar and flour, then add eggs, vanillaand rhubarb and blend well. Sprinkle almonds on top Pour mixture overpartially baked crust and continue baking for 30-35 minutes. Serve warm orcooled.  If you like top with powdered sugar.  (It serves like alemon bar.) Store leftovers in the refrigerator.

Kat's Rhubarb Vinaigrette

2 c chopped rhubarb
1/3 c honey
1/3 c water
Heat above in sauce pan. Boil for 2 minutesthen purée. While hot add
1 minced shallot Add 1/4 - 1/3 c balsamic vinegar (taste).  Add saltand pepper.
Let mixture cool. Whisk in 1/2 c EVOO. We had over fresh greens andstrawberries

....and more help from my friends.....I finallyreceived my new business cards and the first folks I gave them to were my everfaithful suppliers of wonderful organic produce, Mike and Sandi Smith fromSmith Family Organic Farms (look them up on Facebook too).  I loaded up on figs (sweet as sugar so I consumedhalf - yes half - the basket in the car ride back to my office) and GeodeSquash.  The recipes for these bad boys to follow in the next post. I hear they are delicious on the grill and topped with blue cheese androsemary.  YUMMMMM.

Summer Savory Kebab

1 Geode Squash, cut in disks
2 small Thai eggplants, cut in half disk shapes
1 La Brea French Demi Baguette
1 long sprig of rosemary
1/4 c. Roquefort cheese crumbles
2 or 3 fresh figs
Salt, pepper and garlic powder

Cut the ends of the bread off first. Skewer one end then layer and repeat squash, fig, eggplant and bread slice- repeat and finish with the last end piece. Drizzle with olive oil and dust with garlic powder, salt and pepper. Thread rosemary up the skewer. Place on grill and brown as evenly as possible. Top with cheese and serve.

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