Braised Pork with Fuyu Persimmon
Adapted from www.epicurious.com.
This dish is almost like a tagine-style stew, and highlights fall persimmons wonderfully. Serve with some basmati rice to soak up some of the sauce.

  • 2 1/2 lbs. boneless pork shoulder, cut into 1 1/2 -inch pieces
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. vegetable oil, plus more as needed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbs. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne
  • 2 cups water
  • 14 oz. can whole tomatoes, drained and chopped, or 3/4 lb. plum tomatoes, peeled (see note)
  • 1 1/2 lbs. firm-ripe Fuyu persimmons, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch-thick wedges
  • 1/2 cup chopped scallions, green parts only

Directions: Place oven rack in lower third of oven and preheat oven to 350˚F. Pat pork dry with paper towels, then sprinkle with salt. In a 6-quart Dutch oven or other large, heavy, oven-safe pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. In 3 batches, brown the pork in the pot, about 2 1/2 minutes per side. Transfer to a large bowl as you go. Add more oil if needed between batches.

Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the pot. Over medium heat, cook the onion, bell pepper, and celery until softened, 3-5 minutes. Stir in the garlic, cumin, coriander, turmeric, and cayenne, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Transfer the pork and any accumulated juices back into the pot. Add the water and tomatoes, and bring to a simmer over medium heat.

Cover the pot, then transfer to the oven. Braise about 1 hour 45 minutes, until very tender. Add the persimmons to the pork, partially cover the pot, and cook another 10 minutes. Remove from oven, add salt and pepper to taste, and top with the chopped scallions.

Note: To peel a tomato, slice an X in the end opposite the stem, and immerse in boiling water for just 10 seconds. Transfer to an ice water bath, then peel when cool enough to handle. Makes 6 servings.

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Cara Cara Orange Curd
Adapted from www.thekitchn.com.
Cara Cara oranges are a variety of navel orange, and they are less acidic and sweeter than typical oranges. They have ruby red flesh which make them a great ingredient to use during the holidays, adding a bright, festive flash of color to your table right when you want it to look its best.

  • 2 Cara Cara oranges
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into cubes, softened
  • pinch of salt

Directions: Zest one of the oranges. Slice both of the oranges in half and juice them. Pour the juice into a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a rapid simmer, and cook, stirring, to reduce to about 1/4 cup, 2-4 minutes. Transfer to a measuring cup to cool, and stir in the orange zest and the lemon juice. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolks, and sugar. When the orange juice has cooled to room temperature, whisk it into the egg mixture in a slow, steady stream.

Set a fine-mesh strainer over a clean bowl, and set aside.

Transfer the egg and juice mixture back into the saucepan. Cook, gently and constantly stirring, until the mixture turns into a pudding-like consistency, 6-8 minutes (or until the curd reaches 180˚F.) Strain the mixture through the strainer to remove any bits of cooked egg and zest. Stir in the butter and a pinch of salt.

Store in a clean, covered container in the refrigerator. It will keep about a week. Makes 1 cup.

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Persimmon Salsa
Adapted from www.bonappetit.com.
You can make this tasty and unique salsa up to 4 hours ahead of time. Just keep covered in the refrigerator, and bring to room temperature before serving. Serve with tortilla chips or roasted chicken.

  • 4 Fuyu persimmons, firm, but ripe, peeled if you like, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 Tbs. minced white onion
  • 1 Tbs. + 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh basil
  • 2 tsp. minced seeded Serrano chile
  • 2 tsp. minced fresh mint

Directions: Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve! Makes 2 cups.

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Shaker Lemon Pie
Adapted from www.smittenkitchen.com.
First made in Shaker communities, Shaker lemon pies use the entire lemon. This makes Meyer lemons—which are sweeter, less acidic, and have thinner skins—the perfect lemon for this pie. Keep in mind, the lemons need to macerate in sugar for 24 hours, so plan ahead.

  • 2 large Meyer lemons, thoroughly washed and dried
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 Tbs. butter, melted
  • 3 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 Tbs. turbinado or other coarse sugar
  • Enough dough for a double-crust pie (double the recipe below)

Directions: Finely grate the lemon zest into a large bowl. Use a mandoline to slice the lemons as paper thin as possible. Pick out and discard seeds. Add the lemon slices to the bowl of zest, and add the sugar and salt. Cover, and set aside at room temperature for 24 hours. Preheat the oven to 425˚F. Use a lightly floured surface to roll out half of the dough to 1/8-inch thick. Gently transfer to a 9-inch pie plate, and trim the edge with a sharp knife, leaving an overhang of 1/2 an inch. Add the eggs, melted butter, and flour to the lemon-sugar mixture. Mix well, then pour into the prepared pie shell. Roll the second half of pie dough into a 12-inch round, then drape over the pie filling. Trim it, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Tuck the overhang underneath the bottom crust, and press the edge to seal. Use a fork to crimp the edge if you’d like. In a small bowl, beat the egg white until frothy, then brush onto the pie crust. Sprinkle with coarse sugar, then use a sharp knife to cut slits into the crust to allow steam to escape. Bake in the center of the oven for 25 minutes, Reduce temperature to 325˚F, and bake an additional 20-25 minutes, until the crust is golden. Allow to cool on a wire rack, and serve warm, or at room temperature. Makes 1 pie.

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No-Fail Pie Crust
Adapted from www.orangette.blogspot.com
This recipe calls for a food processor, but if you don’t have one, you can make this by hand with a pastry cutter or two forks. It will take longer, but it’ll work! Keep your ingredients COLD for best results; I keep mine in the freezer. This recipe can be doubled, just keep extra dough wrapped in plastic in the freezer for up to three months. I’ve adapted this to be vegan by substituting Earth Balance Buttery Sticks for the butter and it turns out perfect.

  • 4 Tbs. ice water, plus more as needed
  • 3/4 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbs. sugar
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 9 Tbs. unsalted butter, cold, cut into cubes

Directions: In a small bowl, mix together 4 Tbs. of ice water and the apple cider vinegar. Place the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. Add the cubes of butter and pulse until it resembles a coarse meal. With the motor running, drizzle in the vinegar and water mixture and process until moist clumps form. Pick up a handful of dough and squeeze it in your hand. If it holds together, you’re done. If it seems crumbly, add more ice water, just one teaspoon at a time, and pulse until just incorporated. Don’t overwork the dough. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured countertop and gather it until it just holds together. Shape it into a ball, then press into a disk about 1 1/2 inches thick. It’s okay if it cracks a bit at the edges, just smooth away with your fingertips. Wrap snugly in plastic wrap and press it a little more. Smooth away the cracks around the edges. Put the disk in the refrigerator for at least two hours.

Remove from the fridge about 10 minutes before you’re ready to roll the dough out. Bake as pie recipe directs. Makes 1 pie crust.


Radicchio, Carrot, and Cara Cara Orange Bulgur Salad
Adapted from www.brooklynsupper.net.
This crunchy, brightly colored salad has a touch of spice from fresh ginger and garlic dressing. If you don’t have any bulgur on hand, feel free to substitute rice, quinoa, or couscous.

  • 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 small shallot, peeled and minced
  • 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
  • 4 Tbs. olive oil
  • salt
  • 1/2 cup bulgur
  • 2 large carrots, washed, peeled
  • 1 small head of radicchio, washed and trimmed
  • 2 cups spinach or tatsoi, rinsed and dried, torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 Cara Cara oranges

Directions: Combine the garlic, ginger, mustard, and apple cider vinegar. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, then season to taste with salt. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, bring 1 cup of water to a boil over high heat. Stir in the bulgur and a pinch of salt. Return to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 10 minutes, then remove the lid and fluff with a fork. Place in a large serving bowl.

Slice the carrots into long thin ribbons with a vegetable peeler. Thinly slice the radicchio. Zest one of the oranges, then slice the oranges into segments. Add the carrots, radicchio, orange zest, and orange segments to the bowl of bulgur, and toss well to combine. Fold in the torn spinach or tatsoi and then drizzle with some dressing. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed, and serve with more dressing at the table. Makes 4 servings.

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Cara Cara Orange and Kale Salad
Loosely adapted from www.spoonforkbacon.com.
This is a very cheery, filling salad, full of texture and bursts of flavor. A bonus is that it’s a snap to prepare.

  • 1/2 shallot, finely minced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely mined
  • 1 Tbs. honey
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 3 Tbs. champagne or good white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 6 cups kale, washed and dried, stemmed and chopped
  • 3 Cara Cara oranges, sliced in half, segments removed
  • 1/2 cup almonds, raw or dry roasted, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup Manchego cheese, grated

Directions: In a small bowl, whisk together the shallot, garlic, honey, mustard, and vinegar. While whisking, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and whisk until emulsified. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Place the kale in a large bowl. Drizzle with half of the dressing, and toss well to coat. Add the orange pieces, almonds, and cheese, and toss to combine. Add more dressing if needed, and taste and adjust seasoning. Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Makes 6 servings.

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