Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Seasonal Produce - In the Bag

Being a farm girl I was raised to respect seasonal produce. I didn’t even know there was such a thing as non-seasonal produce until I was fully adult. Now that might have been due to the non-globalization in my youthful years or the fact that the little town I grew up in STILL has problems getting produce of reasonable quality. But I think that was a blessing; after all, how could I have learned to appreciate the seasonality of fresh raspberries right off the cane, or tomatoes off the vine, fresh corn on the cob just picked or springtime rhubarb tossed together with strawberries for pie?

While preparing to post my Lemon Meringue Pie for the January Daring Bakers Challenge I noticed a few other challenges in the sidebar. One of special interest was the In the Bag challenge presented by A Slice of Cherry Pie and Real Epicurean. I thought to myself, “Self, this is right up your alley. Go for it!” And so I did …

This month’s virtual bag included pears – in season, a lemon, and a handful of nuts. While this instantly brought to mind a lovely pear tart with an almond and lemon crust I talked myself off the precipice. I’m trying to feed my family more healthy foods and dessert, while fabulous, cannot be considered all the healthy when offer every night of the week.

The second and much healthier thought was salad. I love a nice green salad with bits of sweet fruit mixed with tangy vinaigrette. I also love the crunch and texture of nuts in there. So, with a healthy heart and a full tummy, I present my In the Bag dish … Pear, Cardamom Glazed Walnuts and Gorgonzola Salad.

This is such an easy dish to prepare after a long day at work. Really there is no recipe … I just melted a little sugar with cardamom thrown in for a bit of zing. After that I tossed in a few toasted walnuts and let set up on a Silpat mat. I sliced a pear in thin slices and tossed with a bit of lemon juice to keep them from turning brown. I dug in the fridge because I knew there was a nice chunk of Gorgonzola Dolce hiding in there. A little bit of mache salad mix and a dash of superior balsamic vinegar I scored in Nice a few years ago, and TaDa … dinner!


Scott at Real Epicurean said...

It looks really, really delicious. I'm trying to lose a few pounds so anything that even resembles healthy food is on the menu - and this seems to fit the bill perfectly!

Kim Stone said...

Hey Scott-

Not only is it healthy but super fast to make after a crazy day at work. Talk about sweet relief.

Thanks for your comment.

Julia said...

Oooh....this looks fantastic!