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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Fall Flavors and the End of Grilling Season

Happy Tuesday all! So I guess I forgot to show you the fabulousness from this weekend. I got the fall flavors brewing in my kitchen, making pumpkin plus bars - tender, moist pumpkin cake delicately resting on a thin layer of brownie; and salted oatmeal cookies. Yum, yum, yum. They will turn even the most skeptical oatmeal cookie eater.

Pumpkin plus bars - surprise brownie bottom!

Salted oatmeal cookies - sprinkled with
big crystals of sea salt.

Now onto a delicious, final days of summer, grilled (indoor OR outdoor), healthy meal. Try out this delicious soba noodle pasta dish (I found buckwheat soba noodles at Whole Foods, but you should at least be able to find your soba noodles in your local grocery store). Serve with your favorite green and a healthy protein - fish, chicken, soy hot dogs (in my case). Enjoy!

Soba Noodle Salad with Pesto and Grilled Eggplant
Bill Kim

  • 1 pound Asian eggplant, sliced crosswise 1/2 inch thick
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing and tossing
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 2 cups basil leaves
  • 4 medium garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 pound buckwheat soba noodles
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 6 large radishes, cut into thin wedges through the stem
  • 1/2 English cucumber—halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1 cup mint leaves, torn if large
  1. Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Brush the eggplant with olive oil and season with salt. Grill over moderate heat, turning once, until tender and lightly charred, 6 minutes. Transfer the eggplant to a plate and let cool completely, then cut into 3/4-inch pieces.
  2. In a small skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat, tossing, until golden, about 4 minutes; transfer to a plate and let cool.
  3. In a food processor, combine the pine nuts, basil and garlic and pulse until finely chopped. With the machine on, add the 1 cup of olive oil in a steady stream. Add the soy sauce and pulse to blend. Season the pesto with salt.
  4. In a large saucepan of salted boiling water, cook the soba noodles until al dente, about 4 minutes. Rinse the noodles under cold water, then drain and pat dry.
  5. In a large bowl, toss the soba noodles with the pesto until evenly coated. Add the grilled eggplant, tomatoes, radishes, cucumber and 3/4 cup of the mint leaves and toss well. Season the soba noodle salad with salt. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup of mint leaves on top and serve.

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