May 20, 2013
Written by Robin Glowa
Tuesday, 13 September 2011 23:00
“Summer afternoon, summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.”
— Henry James
Do you feel the warm, still afternoons of summer slowly slipping away? Now is the time to stop and savor each ray of sunshine, each afternoon as dusk comes a bit sooner each day, and the whisper of fall is in the air.
Yet the sweet succulence of summer lingers on as September absolutely glows with lush abundance. This is the perfect time to visit your local farmer’s market and fill your basket to the brim with all the sensational flavors of the season. Buying locally grown produce is a tremendously healthful way to nourish yourself and your family, while supporting the efforts of our local farmers.
Much love goes into the growing, nurturing and harvesting of fresh fruits and vegetables and these are the foods that will fill our bodies with the deepest of healthy influences.
This is the time for last hurrahs, the last opportunity to feast upon the most fragrant and succulent of summer’s bounty. Gather up a big bag of peaches, which have been exquisite this season. Slice them up and offer them in a pretty crystal dish with a dollop of freshly whipped cream.
Eggplant is particularly delicious this time of year. Glossy, purply-black, sensually rounded eggplants are beautiful to look at and a wonderfully versatile ingredient. While eggplants are not as nutritionally dense as other fruits and vegetables, they are a good source of fiber, low in calories and an excellent meat substitute.
Eggplant does not keep long and should be used within two days of purchase. Try this recipe for ratatouille, which is full of ingredients from the farmer’s market, and enjoy these last delicious days of summer.
Robin Glowa, HHC, AADP, is a food and wellness enthusiast who earned her certification in holistic health counseling from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and Columbia University Teachers College.
She specializes in healthy cooking classes for children and adults, as well as cooking presentations and wellness workshops for many local organizations. For more information go to theconsciouscook.net, call 203-393-1037, or http://confessionsofaconsciouscook.blogspot.com.
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 large sweet onion
6-7 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 medium size eggplants, cut into one inch chunks
2 sweet peppers, any color, cut into chunks
2 banana peppers, seeded and cut into chunks (keep seeds in, if you want the heat)
2 large cherry peppers (optional) seeded and cut into chunks
1 zucchini, cut into one inch cubes
1 summer squash, cut into one inch cubes
3/4 cup minced fresh herbs (oregano, basil, parsley, marjoram)
2 dozen ripe cherry tomatoes
Heat olive oil in large pan over medium heat and sauté onion until translucent. Stir in garlic and sauté for a few minutes, then add eggplant and cook for 15 minutes. Add peppers, zucchini and summer squash, sprinkle with half the herbs and a pinch of sea salt. Cover the pan and simmer for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add tomatoes and cook for 10 more minutes. Sprinkle the remaining herbs on the vegetables just before serving.
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