Gardens to Tables

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Welcome to Gardens to Tables
Harvest Apple, Chanterelle & Squash Risotto from Morgan's in the desert Print E-mail
Written by Ann Shepphird   

Chef Jimmy SchmidtIt's that time of year: time for the holidays, for fall produce at its peak and for the "season" to get under way out in the Southern California desert. A top hideaway since the 1920s (when Frank Capra wrote screenplays from a bungalow that still bears his name), La Quinta Resort & Club last year added the Morgan's in the desert restaurant. Morgan's Executive Chef Jimmy Schmidt (right) specializes in finding and using the best in seasonal ingredients for his menus -- and was kind enough to share this fabulous risotto recipe with us.

Harvest Apple, Chanterelle & Squash Risotto

Makes 4 servings
Prep Time 30 Minutes - Cook Time 30 Minutes
4 cups diced butternut squash
3 cups chanterelles, brushed cleaned (do not rinse with water) and torn into quarters
6 tablespoons olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
4 cups of fresh apple cider
1/4 cup sliced fresh ginger root        
2 tablespoons minced shallots
2 cups Violone Nano or Arborio rice
1 tablespoon mild smoked paprika
2 cups dry “J” Pinot Gris white wine
4 tablespoons fresh chives
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup aged finely ground Parmesan cheese
2 cups Honey Crisp apples, cut into fine julienne
2 tablespoons fresh sage leaf, cut fine into chiffonade
2 tablespoons hazelnut oil (substitute olive oil)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. (Click "read more" for rest of recipe.)

Read more...
 
Combat Winter Fatigue with Fresh Summer Cocktails from Tommy Bahama Laguna Beach Print E-mail
Written by Ann Shepphird   

Tommy Bahama cucumber mojitoIt might be winter outside but just walk into the new Tommy Bahama Laguna Beach and it's summer -- and not just summer anywhere but the quintessential Laguna Beach summer, right down to the antique bathing suits and surfboards hanging on the wall, the location inside the restored Heisler Building on Pacific Coast Highway and menu items such as Ahi Tuna Tacos (not to be missed).

In honor of providing that summer feeling as we near the shortest day of the year, here are recipes for two of their cocktails, which are light and fresh and made with produce sourced locally. First is a twist on the mojito (left), with cucumber adding a bit of sassiness. The other is their signature drink, the Cant-e-lope Tonight, where a fresh melon taste is created through the combination of watermelon liquor, fresh orange juice and sour mix. Enjoy!

CUCUMBER MINT MOJITO
Tommy Bahama Cantelope TonightIngredients
3 oz      Tommy Bahama White Sand rum
6 oz      Cucumber Cubes
1/3        Fresh lime
5          Mint leaves
3 oz      Sprite  
Procedure: Muddle cucumber cubes, mint, and lime. Add rum and shake 20 times. Pour over ice and top with sprite.

CANT-E-LOPE TONIGHT
Martini Glass
Ingredients
2 oz      Marie Brizard Watermelon
1 oz      Ketel One vodka
1 oz      Fresh orange juice
½ oz     Fresh sour mix
Procedure:  Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice; shake 20 times strain. Garnish with 2 fresh cantaloupe scoops.

 
Battling the Bagrada Bug the Organic Way Print E-mail
Written by Ann Shepphird   

Bagrada Bug up closeI recently received this e-mail from Wendy Pietrzak, who oversees the community gardens in Santa Monica, and thought I would pass it along in case anyone else is dealing with the dreaded badraga bug (aka the painted or harlequin bug), which has been attacking cabbage crops in California. Photo is from Mike Lewis of the UC Riverside Center for Invasive Species :

Several of our diligent Main Street gardeners shared some information on a bug that seems to be infesting kale and other lettuce plants/seedlings in the community gardens and I want to share it with you also. It has been identified as the Bagrada Bug. Here a link with more information on the bug:

http://cisr.ucr.edu/bagrada_bug.html

If you are having issues with this bug in your garden here are some organic ways to combat them (click "read more"):

Read more...
 
New Edible Garden at Beverly Hills High School Print E-mail
Written by Ann Shepphird   

Beverly Hills High School GardenUnder the direction of teachers Julie Goler and Darrell Smith and with the costs underwritten by their PTSA and ROP, Beverly Hills High School recently installed two raised beds using a variation of Mel Bartholomew’s "Square Foot Garden." According to Julie Goler, the idea is to “create a living breathing space for produce that will ultimately be used in the culinary arts program.”

The program started with the building of raised beds in two 10x 3 boxes with room for 60  different crops. Following a visit by Jo Anne Trigo from Two Dog Nursery, the students put in crops that include kale, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, beets, arugula, sweet peas, spinach and romaine. Future plans include fruit trees and blueberry bushes – and a rotating composter arrives this week.

The garden is envisioned as a collaborative effort and is also as an example for those with space as small as an apartment balcony of what’s possible in a small space.

 
Perfect for the Holidays: The Bourberry from Kai Restaurant at Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Print E-mail
Written by Ann Shepphird   

Bourberry from Kai RestaurantHow to ward off that fall chill using seasonal fruit (and, okay, a little bourbon)? We bring you the Bourberry, from the Mixologists at Kai Restaurant at the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort & Spa.

2 oz of your favorite bourbon
1 oz of fresh and bottled apple juice
1/4 oz fresh lemon juice
1/4 oz rich maple syrup
Small apple slice
Splash of bottled apple juice
Dash of traditional bitters
Lemon twist

First we took a fresh granny smith apple slice and mashed it with a splah of bottled apple juice. Then we added the lemon juice, a blood orange slice, about 5 fresh cranberries, and then muddled together with a dash of bitters. Then we added the bourbon, maple syrup, and apple juice mush. A few more fresh cranberries before we shook everything together. A few more intact cranberries after we pour the mixture right into the glass creates 3 textures of cranberry in the drink. Enjoy!

 
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