Fast and fresh off the farm

Go-to seasonal recipes from Island chefs

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Andrew Moore, Pumpkins, Egg Tempera, 1996.

The Martha’s Vineyard Food and Wine Festival kicks off on Thursday evening at 7 pm at the Ag Hall, with Fresh off the Farm, a “gathering of community and cuisine,” with farm-to-table tastes from Island chefs (and farmers) such as Nathan Gould, and pairings of wine and beer, all to the tunes of Good Night Louise. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Island Grown Schools. For more information: mvfoodandwine.com.

In honor of all things fresh and local, we asked Island chefs participating in the festival for recipes using their favorite Martha’s Vineyard seasonal ingredients.

Judy Klumick, Black Sheep

Roasted Squash

My favorite fall ingredient has to be anything squash — all varieties. Although I do not actually grow any, my compost usually gives me a few butternut volunteers every year.

I work with squash a lot in the chillier months, making soups, side dishes, etc. One of my favorite side dishes is a butternut squash puree with roasted bananas.

Roast a whole squash ‘til very blistered and soft.
Peel off skin and discard seeds.
Mash with 2 roasted bananas, butter, salt and pepper and a bit of maple syrup too.
This can be topped with a basic toasted pecan streusel if desired, and baked til bubbly.

See Chef Judy’s story here.

Joseph Monteiro, Atlantic Fish and Chop House

Roasted Corn, Leeks, and Island Crab Soup

Ingredients:

Island corn, 4 ears, off the cobb
Leeks 2, medium diced
Vegetable oil, 1/4 cup
Crab meat, 1 lb
Crab stock, 2 qts
Butter, ¼ lb
Flour, 1/4 lb
Cilantro, 2 oz
Parsley, 1 oz
White wine, 1 cup
Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

In a hot skillet add oil corn, and leeks, saute until tender.
Add butter and flour, stir well, until the roux is formed.
Add white wine stir well.
Add stock, bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes.
Add cilantro and parsley.

In a blender, add hot soup and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve in a bowl with lumps of crab on top. Enjoy!

Read Chef Monteiro’s story here.

Jan Buhrman, The Kitchen Porch

Pumpkin Sauce and Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin is just so darn beautiful this time of year. I love the pink and green pumpkins or the big silver Cinderella pumpkins. The Cinderella pumpkins are the French heirloom whose true name is “Rouge vif D’Etampes” and resemble the pumpkin that transformed into the carriage that carried Cinderella to the ball. Next to all these grand beauties, you’ll find small round “sugar pumpkins” or “pie pumpkins.” Sugar pumpkins are an excellent choice for cooking and baking. These smaller pumpkins have a firm, thin flesh that is much smoother than that of larger pumpkins. They’re perfect for roasting, or making soups or sauces. Pumpkin is one of the widely grown vegetables that is incredibly rich in vital antioxidants: beta-carotene, Vitamin A, and flavonoid poly-phenolic leutin and xanthin.

This recipe for sauce can be used on fresh pasta, poured over sautéed greens, as a dip for veggies, or you can add a can of garbanzo beans, fresh lemon juice and tahini for a pumpkin hummus! Cook several pumpkins at once and freeze for the winter.

Ingredients

3 tsp minced garlic
‪1/2 onion minced
2 cups cooked pumpkin
1 cup stock (chicken or vegetable)
3 tablespoons minced fresh sage sage‬
2 Tbsp minced parsley‬
‪1/2 cup chopped toasted almonds (toast in a dry frying pan on medium-low, stirring frequently, or in a 300 degree oven for 15 minutes)‬
Shaved parmesan
Salt and pepper to taste‬

Method:

In a saucepan, combine garlic and onion and sauté for 10 minutes until lightly cooked. Add the pumpkin, stock, and sage. Cook over medium heat for about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste‬. If the sauce is too thick, add a little more stock. Set aside‬. Serve sprinkled with the toasted almonds, shaved parmesan, and minced parsley if desired‬.

The easiest way to cook pumpkin is to slice in half, scoop out the pumpkin seeds, and rub the flesh with olive oil so it does not stick so easily to pan, and place on a sheet pan flesh side down. Cook for about an hour (3-5 pound pumpkin). If the pumpkin is watery, place the cooked pumpkin in a pan and bring to a slow simmer until it cooks down a bit (20-40 minutes).

Reserve the seeds and pull away most of the flesh from the seeds. The easiest way to do this is to rub the seeds between your fingers, separating them from the flesh. Drizzle the seeds with a bit of olive oil, and spread out evenly on a baking pan. Use any spice you like to flavor your pumpkin seeds. I use soy or curry or maple syrup and sea salt.

Stir the seeds around with your fingers until they’re all well covered in oil and spice. Bake in 350 oven for 15-20 minutes and then toss with a spatula. The pumpkins seeds are cooked when they are lightly browned and a just crispy, some may still be a little bit wet which is fine as they will continue to cook for a few minutes after being removed from the oven.

Sprinkle seeds on the sauce.

Nathan Gould, The Harbor View

Chickweed Pesto

Chickweed is one of my favorite wild greens to use in spring and fall, they seem to grow abundantly here on the Vineyard. They have a mild lettuce-like texture with a slight peppery and earthy finish. It acts great in salads, mixed into pasta dishes, as a replacement for greens or sprouts in sandwiches, or a refreshing garnish, but in my opinion, it is best utilized as pesto to mix into a bowl of fresh handmade noodles.

Ingredients:

4 cups of chickweed, washed and trimmed of any hard stem, a handful reserved for garnish
½ cup hazelnuts, toasted
1/2 cup macadamia nuts
½ cup Romano cheese, freshly grated
4 cloves of garlic
2 lemons, zested, juice from one lemon
½ -3/4 cup Spanish olive oil
½ tsp Fresh ground nutmeg
4 turns, fresh ground pepper, to taste
Martha’s Vineyard Sea Salt, to taste

Method:

Combine all ingredients, except olive oil into a vita-mix or high powered food processor.

Start the processor on low and gradually turn up to medium high speed, while slowly pouring the olive oil. Use enough olive oil to create a smooth paste. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix into a bowl of freshly made noodles, my favorite would be cavatelli or something smaller with good surface texture to hold on the sauce. Garnish with additional romano cheese and a few sprigs of chickweed. Enjoy with a light tasting earthy white wine, a Vino Verde or Albarino would pair great.

Read Chef Gould’s story here.

Justin Melnick, The Terrace at the Charlotte Inn

Butternut Squash Gnocchi with a Sage and Walnut Pesto

Nothing says fall to me more than butternut squash. It is a very versatile and delicious ingredient that I like to utilize in many different ways, roasted, purees, soups, gnocchi, etc.

Ingredients:

Gnocchi:
2 ea butternut squash (about 1 lb each)
2 eggs
2-4 cups all purpose flour

Pesto:

1 cup parmigiano reggiano (small chunks, about 1 in.)
1 cup walnuts, toasted (toast in a 300 degree oven on a sheet pan for 20 min.)
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 bunch sage

Sauce:

2 T butter
1/2 cup parmigiano reggiano (grated)
Salt and pepper

For the gnocchi: (day before)

Cut the squash in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds and season with salt and olive oil. Roast in a 400 degree oven for 40 min or until tender. Pull the squash out of oven, and scoop flesh into a strainer lined with cheesecloth to drain out excess moisture. Place strainer in a bowl to catch the moisture. Place a weight on top of the squash to press out liquid. Allow squash to drain overnight.

(Next day) Place the drained butternut squash on a table with a small amount of flour. Mix in whole eggs with a fork until smooth. Cut flour in with a bench scraper in three installments until all flour is worked in, (note, more or less flour may be necessary depending on moisture content of squash) Once the dough is together and not too sticky, roll into long rolls (should look like a snake)about ½ inch in diameter. Cut the Gnocchi rolls to approximately ½ inch wide.

*Note: Gnocchi can be made in advance and frozen for later use, and can be cut to whatever size you prefer.

For the pesto:

Place toasted walnuts, parmesan cheese, and garlic clove in a food processor, pulse until a loose paste is formed. This could also be done using a mortar and pestle. Once you have the paste, add sage and oil. Pulse slowly until sage is incorporated. Transfer into a plastic container and refrigerate.

*Note, Pesto can be made up to 3 days in advance, keep refrigerated.

For the sauce:

Bring a large pot of slightly salted water to a rolling boil, and carefully place gnocchi in water. When gnocchi floats it is done. Brown the butter slightly in a sauté pan until a nutty aroma is released (about 2 min.) Add in the pesto and stir to incorporate all the flavors. Add the cooked gnocchi, and sprinkle some parmesan cheese directly into the pan. Stir and serve immediately topped with more parmesan cheese.

Read Chef Melnick’s story here.

Jeremy Davis, The Port Hunter

Spaghetti Squash and Black Bean Taco with Mermaid Farm Feta

I love fall, it’s my favorite time of year, especially on this Island. The weather’s beautiful, towns quiet down a bit, leafs turn all kinds of beautiful colors, and there’s still an abundance of delicious produce at the farms. I can’t say I have just one favorite local fall ingredient, because I love to cook with them all. One recipe I have always enjoyed is a spaghetti squash and black bean taco. We have great local spaghetti squash, and everyone loves taco night at home. The spaghetti squash works well in this recipe because it plays like pulled pork (which is my favorite kind of taco).

Ingredients:

3 pounds spaghetti squash
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
Sixteen 6 inch corn tortillas
One 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained very well
4 ounces crumbled mermaid farm feta
1/4 cup finely diced red onion
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
dash of hot sauce

Method:

To cook squash, pre-heat the oven to 375. Cut squash lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.

Place in the oven face down in an oiled half sheet pan, and bake for 35 minutes. Larger squash could take 45 minutes. Once the squash is done cooking and slightly cooled, scrape the flesh with a fork into a mixing bowl and discard skin. In a separate bowl, whisk together lime juice, chili powder, cumin, coriander, and salt. Pour over the spaghetti squash and gently toss. Heat a dry heavy skillet over med-high heat, warm and blister each tortilla shell for 30 seconds on each side. Place each shell with red onion, black beans, squash mixture, crumbled feta, chopped cilantro, and hot sauce if needed. Serve with lime wedges and enjoy