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Requests

— Couscous sources and salads

— Best peach sources

Good morning, good Wednesday company. Today there is salad on the hot-weather menu, and Jeana Reidl wants to know "where I can find Israeli or pearl couscous, and some good salads you can make with it."

An anonymous reader is considering ordering peaches from The Peach Truck this summer and wondered if you recommend this source, of if you have another one. In preparation for those peaches, A.R. sent a recipe for chutney made with summer's sweetest fruit. Keep reading to get that recipe.

HAIL KALE

Marge Pasch sent this creative vegetable dish in a recent collection.

Terry's Creamed Kale

This recipe works equally well with Swiss chard.

Kale

Chopped onion

Olive oil

1/4 to 1/3 cup orange juice or cranberry juice or some of both

Goat cheese

Chopped walnuts

Pull the leaves off the ribs of kale, and chop coarsely.

Sauté some chopped onion in olive oil in a large pan until glossy, then add the kale.

Add orange juice, the amount depending on how much kale you have. Cover and let simmer for 15 minutes. Take lid off, and let it keep simmering while the juice reduces. When there's not much juice left, remove from heat and stir in a big chunk of goat cheese. Mix well, and add some chopped walnuts to taste. Serve.

CHUNKY GAZPACHO

As to summertime meals, Tim Threadgill prefers the gazpacho recipe of Alton Brown, a recipe he found on the Food Network. His reason for liking this particular version of a cold summer soup? "I like it because it doesn't use bread to thicken and leaves the vegetables chunky. However, it would be easy enough to blend."

Alton Brown's Gazpacho

1 1/2 pounds vine-ripened tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped

Tomato juice

1 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped

1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper

1/2 cup chopped red onion

1 small jalapeno, seeded and minced

1 medium garlic clove, minced

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 lime, juiced

2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 teaspoon toasted, ground cumin

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

Fill a 6-quart pot halfway full of water, set over high heat and bring to a boil.

Make an X with a paring knife on the bottom of the tomatoes. Drop the tomatoes into the boiling water for 15 seconds, remove and transfer to an ice bath and allow to cool until able to handle, about 1 minute. Remove and pat dry. Peel, core and seed the tomatoes. When seeding the tomatoes, place the seeds and pulp into a fine mesh strainer set over a bowl to catch the juice. Press as much of the juice through as possible, and then add enough bottled tomato juice to bring the total to 1 cup.

Place the tomatoes and juice into a large mixing bowl. Add the cucumber, bell pepper, red onion, jalapeno, garlic clove, olive oil, lime juice, balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire, cumin, salt and pepper, and stir to combine.

Transfer 1 1/2 cups of the mixture to a blender, and puree for 15 to 20 seconds on high speed. Return the pureed mixture to the bowl, and stir to combine. Cover and chill for 2 hours and up to overnight. Serve with chiffonade of basil.

SUMMER CHUTNEY

A.R., in researching The Peach Truck while deciding where to purchase summer's peaches, found this recipe for chutney on their site. "They recommend serving this with jerk chicken, and that recipe may also be found there. As an introduction, "It's the peach chutney that's the star of the show. Once made, it will keep for a couple of weeks in the refrigerator — assuming you don't eat it all before then."

Peach Chutney

3/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 cup finely diced onion

1 cup finely diced red bell pepper

1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely diced

1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 3 cloves)

1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

1/2 cup golden raisins

1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt

2 tablespoons honey

6 to 8 peaches, peeled, pitted and cut into cubes

To a medium saucepan add the vinegar, lemon juice, sugar and brown sugar, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, add all remaining chutney ingredients except peaches, and stir. Bring this mixture back to a boil, and reduce heat to a simmer. Continue to simmer for 15 minutes, stirring every few minutes. Add the peaches, and stir to combine. Let the mixture return to a simmer, and cook for an additional 15 minutes or until liquid is thick and syrupy. Remove from the heat, and let cool to room temperature for serving. If making in advance, transfer to a glass container and refrigerate until needed.

EASY, BY REQUEST

K.S.H. recommended these two recipes, from the hand-lettered cookbook "Elegant Entertaining," for the reader who wanted easy menus and recipes. "All you need with these two dishes is boiled and buttered new potatoes, or any favorite rice or potato recipe, and some sliced summer tomatoes."

Salmon Fillet

1 (2-pound or less) salmon fillet

2 tablespoons grated onion

Juice of 1 lemon

Fresh-ground pepper

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

1 cup sour cream

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place salmon filets in greased shallow baking dish. Combine onion, lemon, pepper, paprika and Tabasco, and spread over salmon. Spread sour cream on top to cover. Bake for 30 minutes.

Cold Cucumbers

2 cucumbers, peeled and sliced thin

1 onion, sliced thin into separate rings

3/4 cup oil

1/3 cup white vinegar

1and 1/2 teaspoons sugar

Freshly ground pepper

Combine ingredients, and mix well. Refrigerate overnight. Serve on a bed of lettuce or on sliced fresh tomatoes.

PROTEIN SALAD

Here's another simple and healthful salad from the Rose Secrest collection. I can imagine it as an entire meal, really, with some thick-sliced tomatoes and perhaps some homemade bread or excellent bread from the bakery. Maybe a chunk of cheese, too.

Black Bean Salad

1/2 cup dry black beans, cooked

1 cucumber, diced

1 orange, chopped

1/4 cup red onion, diced

2 green onions, sliced

Juice of 1 lemon

Combine all ingredients, chill and serve.

Whatever your tastes and budget this given summer, here's a simple toast to meals together, made without a lot of fuss. And here's an invitation to come back next Wednesday.

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, and know we cannot test the recipes printed here.

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

E-mail: chattfare@gmail.com

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