Tricia Cornell was my second farmers’ market cooking inspiration. Deborah Madison was my first and if I know anything, I know Tricia would be pleased that my brain works like that. First, “What would Deborah Madison, author of 14 books on local cooking do?” with this pile of green beans, and second … “What would Tricia Cornell, master of Minnesota veggie season and CSA seasonal cooking, do” with this stinking Kohlrabi? You see, Deborah Madison is the national icon for cookbook authors who cook local food nationally and Tricia Cornell is my Minnesota icon for cookbook authors who cook local food.
They are both great companions when staring down a pile of seasonal vegetables. The cookbook that turned me onto Tricia was Eat More Vegetables, suggested by my first CSA. Her second book, Minnesota Farmers Market Cookbook also helped me make great food with produce I wasn’t always sure how to use up.
I hope you enjoy the conversation and a recipe for Garlic Scape Pesto Pasta (it’s almost in season again). There is also a great Makers of Minnesota producer who makes a beautiful Escape Garlic Pesto that you can find at Lakewinds Coop from Seven Songs Organic Farm.
Garlic Scape Pesto Pasta
- 6-8 garlic scapes
- ¼ cup pine nuts
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup basil leaves
- 1/4 cup Italian parsley
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 8 oz spaghetti pasta
- Place the garlic scapes in a food processor and pulse for 30 seconds.
- Add the pine nuts and olive oil and pulse for 45 seconds.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the Parmesan cheese and pulse until the ingredients are combined.
- Add the basil, parsley, lemon zest, lemon juice, and salt, and process until reaching the desired consistency.
- Boil water in a medium saucepan. Cook your pasta according to the package directions.
- Before draining the pasta, reserve 1/4 cup of the starchy pasta water.
- Drain the pasta and put it back in the pot.
- Toss in the pesto and mix with the pasta until thoroughly coated.
- Use the reserved pasta water to thin the sauce if it’s dry.
- Finish everything with a big squeeze of lemon juice, salt and pepper.
From Eat More Vegetables by Tricia Cornell
- 2 tbsp butter
- ½ medium onion, minced
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ jalapeño pepper, seeds, and ribs removed, thinly sliced (optional)
- 3 cups corn kernels (about 3 ears)
- 4 eggs, separated
- ½ cup grated cheese (2 ounces; fontina is a good choice)
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 1.5-quart soufflé pan or another deep baking dish. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Soften onions in butter, with salt, about 5 minutes. Do not brown. Add jalapeño, if using, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in corn kernels. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
Beat egg whites to stiff peaks. In a separate bowl, beat egg yolks until smooth. Stir cooled corn mixture and cheese into egg yolks. Fold in beaten egg whites. Slide into prepared pan. Bake 45 minutes, until firmly set and barely golden brown on top. A toothpick will not come out clean, but the top should not jiggle.