Fare Exchange: From poetry for fall to soup, shrimp and salad

Fare Exchange: From poetry for fall to soup, shrimp and salad

October 9th, 2013 Jane Henegar in Life Entertainment

TO REACH US

Fare Exchange is a longtime meeting place for people who love to cook and love to eat. We welcome both your recipes and your requests. Be sure to include precise instructions for every recipe you send.

• Mailing address: Jane Henegar, 913 Mount Olive Road, Lookout Mountain, GA 30750

• E-mail: chattfare@gmail.com

• Fax: 423-668-5092

Welcome to a spicy, crunchy, toasty October menu from Fare Exchange. Aah, the foods of fall ... and the foods of anytime, really.

There is a certain poetry to October, and a Wallace Stevens poem passed around this week echoes the joys of an ordinary suppertime. So how about writing the rest of us, describing in a few words the particular joys of "no particular dinnertime"? Give us, perhaps, the menu, plain and simple.

Here's the inspiration from the Stevens poem:

Now a chicken roasts in the pan,

and the children return,

the murmur of their stories dappling the air.

I peel carrots and potatoes without paring my thumb.

We listen together for your wheels on the drive.

Grace before bread.

And at the table, actual conversation ...

Note that the old stand-bys carrots and potatoes call forth the muse here. Who knows a tasty recipe for carrots? Years ago, Sandy Cushman was profiled in a newspaper article for preparing a carrot dish in every category, from entrée to dessert. Creative carrot cookery deserves a continuing conversation; please join in.

And here are some repeat requests from Barbara B: smoothies of any kind, watermelon pickles and pear relish. There are some hard-as-rocks pears on neighborhood trees, and this request reminds us that they can be turned into a delicacy with the proper attention. If you know how, please let us know.

On this particular day I am out of range of your recipes, but there is still a stash in the wire basket, recipes that came in generous collections from one cook in one envelope. In other words, food from the cupboard. Here goes.

Fran Berven's Broccoli Salad

1 bunch broccoli, cut up

1 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup green onions, sliced

1 cup combined green and red grapes cut in half, or 1 cup raisins

1/2 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled (alternative is Bac-O's, but real is better)

1/4 cup shredded almonds, toasted about 10 minutes in a 350-degree oven

Dressing

1/3 cup sugar

1 cup mayonnaise

1 tablespoon vinegar

Combine broccoli, celery, onions and grapes. Mix together dressing ingredients in a small bowl. Just before serving, add bacon and almonds to the broccoli mixture along with the dressing.

Barbara Arnold's Chocolate Chip Pecan Pie

1 stick butter or margarine, melted and cooled

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup flour

2 eggs, beaten

1 cup chocolate chips

1 cup pecans, broken

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 9-inch deep-dish pie shell

Mix together first 7 ingredients and pour into pie shell. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 50 to 60 minutes.

- Linda Leake

Town and Country Vegetable Soup

2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, crushed by hand

1 cup peas

1 cup green beans

1 onion, chopped

2 potatoes, cut into small chunks

4 carrots, sliced

2 stalks celery, sliced

1 cup lima beans

1 cup corn

16 ounces water

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon pepper

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 cup cooked macaroni

Combine all ingredients except macaroni; bring to a boil, then simmer for 3 hours. At this point add cooked macaroni.

- Linda Leake

Shrimp a la Greque

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 cups chopped or fresh canned tomatoes, drained

1/2 cup dry white wine

2 tablespoons finely chopped, fresh flat-leaf parsley, divided

1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram, crushed

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper

1-1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled

3 ounces feta cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; reduce heat to medium-low. Cook until garlic colors, stirring frequently. Add tomatoes, wine, 1 tablespoon parsley, marjoram, salt and pepper. Cook over medium-high heat until sauce is the thickness of a light puree, stirring occasionally.

Add shrimp; cook until shrimp turn pink, about 5 minutes. Add feta, stirring gently (try to keep cheese from crumbling too much). Garnish with remaining parsley. Serve hot.

Skillet Hash Browns

Here is a recipe that justifies the existence of that food processor grating disk. If you don't have one, a box grater will do.

5 russet potatoes (about 3 pounds), peeled and coarsely shredded

1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

8 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided

2 bunches scallions, greens and whites separated, thinly sliced

Coarse sea salt

Rinse potatoes in a colander under cold water until water runs clear. Squeeze firmly to remove excess liquid. Transfer to a large bowl. Add salt and pepper; toss to coat.

Heat 6 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add half of potatoes; press gently into an even layer. Sprinkle with scallion whites. Top with remaining potatoes; press gently again. Cook until golden brown on bottom and sides, 10 to 15 minutes.

Slide hash browns onto a plate. Carefully place skillet upside down over hash browns and flip to invert into skillet, browned side up. Drizzle remaining 2 tablespoons oil around sides of skillet. Cook hash browns until bottom is golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes longer; slice onto a plate and season with sea salt. Top with scallion greens and cut into wedges.

Do ahead: Hash browns can be made 1 hour ahead. Place on a wire rack set inside a large rimmed baking sheet and keep them in a 200-degree oven. Top with scallions before serving.

- Bon Appetit magazine

Just a Dash...

Lisa the Vegetable Girl has a simple formula: "He grills, I do the vegetables. Works every time." And vegetables? Here is one possibility from her kitchen: "spaghetti squash, halved and baked and shredded into spaghetti-like strands and topped with any sautéed vegetables."

Send us your brightest ideas, your quickest and your tastiest. We will be waiting.