Seasonal Recipe: Falafel Spice Tomato Flatbread

As a final goodbye to vibrant Summer produce, we’re savoring this flavorful and seasonal flatbread from Bon Appetit. Do justice by those final ripe tomatoes, the last of your crisp cucumbers, and that medley of aromatic garden herbs one last time before next Summer. 

INGREDIENTS

  • Flat bread, naan, or pocketless pitas (original recipe includes instructions, but you can use store bought, too!)

Tomatoes and Chickpeas

  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

  • 1 teaspoon sumac (if unavailable, you can substitute lemon zest)

  • ½ teaspoon each of crushed red pepper flakes, ground coriander, and ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 2 large heirloom tomatoes, any color, thinly sliced

  • 1 15.5-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed

  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 1 small shallot, thinly sliced

  • ½ cup parsley leaves

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

Yogurt Sauce

  • 1 Persian cucumber, peeled, chopped

  • ¾ cup plain yogurt

  • ½ cup each of coarsely chopped fresh mint and parsley

  • Hot sauce

RECIPE PREPARATION

Tomatoes and Chickpeas

  • Combine garlic, sumac, red pepper flakes, coriander, cumin, and 1 tsp. salt in a small bowl. Arrange tomato slices in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and sprinkle garlic mixture evenly over top. Let sit at room temperature at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour.

  • Toss chickpeas and vinegar in a medium bowl; season with salt and pepper. Mash chickpeas with a fork until about half are smashed. Add shallot, parsley, and oil and toss to combine; season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Yogurt Sauce

  • Combine cucumber, yogurt, mint, and parsley in a medium bowl; season with hot sauce, salt, and pepper. Let sit at room temperature at least 15 minutes.

Assemble

  • Top each flatbread with yogurt sauce, chickpea mixture, and tomatoes. Drizzle with more oil and season well with salt and pepper.


Ramping up for Spring

Ramps, or Wild Leeks, are wild edible plants in the allium family. Growing natively in the Appalachian mountains from Canada to North Carolina, ramps only appear for a few weeks before going to seed and disappearing for the Summer. As the first green to appear in early Spring, ramps have historically been celebrated as a sign of Spring and a tonic to the traditional Appalachian meat-heavy Winter diet.

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So you joined a CSA or Edible Eden is growing you kale, mustard greens, leeks and other lesser loved produce. Now you have a fridge brimming with seasonal, green things. It’s a Wednesday night and you have no idea what to do with it! Plus it’s cold outside and salad just isn’t going to cut it. Considering going out? Wait! there’s a solution! Try this super easy weekday fall pasta. It blends the healthiness of vitamin rich fall veggies with the comfort food element of pasta. Does it have gluten in it…? Not if you use gluten free pasta...

Fall Fennel Slaw

I love fennel; it’s one of my favorite fall veggies and grows great in our climate. One of the best ways to eat it is raw and whole like an apple. My next favorite way is in this mouth popping salad:

Alternatively, if you're dealing with confirmed fennel hater, convince them to try this:

Spicy Pickled Asparagus

Asparagus season is upon us, and it's such a treat. Asparagus is one of those crops that really speaks to a seasonal eating lifestyle. It pops up for such a short growing window- from mid-April through late May in our climate; and when it does it is so tender and delicious.

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BLTs for the Jews

Oh dear members of my tribe, especially the kosher keepers, but even the less-then-kosher keepers, who grew up keeping kosher and now just kind of avoid pig products for no clear reason... Do I have a treat for you!

First of all, some brief thoughts on bacon- ok, the non-Jews eat it for breakfast. Fine. But beyond a chewy sweet crunchy salty breakfast experience, beyond bringing a smoky rich flavor to your legumenous soups, even forget for a moment about the way roasted squash reaches new hights with a strip of sizzling meat in it's cavity... there is nothing in the world quite like a BLT. (That's Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato for the uninitiated).

Something about how the creaminess of the Hellmans' mayo brings out the sweet acidity of a perfectly ripe summer tomato, the meaty crunch of the bacon juxtaposes with the lesser crunch of a mild stack of lettuce, and it's all encompassed in the sweet embrace of a suitable bread.

It's not just a sandwich- it's an icon, it's an experience. And folks- it is now available for the Jewish pallet. So go, go down to the Bethesda Farmers market and seek out that character of a kosher bacon seller Hayim. Buy a package of his kosher lamb baaacon. If you can't find him email him at lambbaaacon@gmail.com. (yes it is star k kosher and yes it is made with Grow and Behold free ranging lambs).