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Serves 6; Recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-2 bunches tender kale (any variety), stems removed, leaves torn into bite-size pieces
and washed thoroughly
-1 Tbsp fresh meyer lemon Juice
-3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
-1 large onion, any variety, sliced into ½ inch rings
-1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves
-2 cloves garlic, smashed
-1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese (optional)
-1/2 cup toasted and chopped pistachios
-salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a small baking dish, toss the onion with 1 Tbsp. olive oil, the thyme leaves and the garlic. Season with salt and pepper and roast until tender and beginning to caramelize – about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
While onion is roasting, place the washed kale in a large mixing bowl. Blot dry with paper towels and toss with the lemon juice and remaining olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Let rest until onions are cooked.

Add the hot roasted onions to the kale. The kale will wilt slightly. Transfer to a serving bowl and top salad with the crumbled goat cheese (if using) and pistachios. Serve immediately.

Recipe by Courtney McDonald
Serves 6-8

For the lamb:
-1 bone-in or boneless leg of lamb (3-5 lbs)
(you could also use a rack, loin or loin chops for this recipe if you prefer – adjust cooking time accordingly)
-1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
-4 sprigs fresh rosemary
-1 orange, sliced into ¼ inch rounds
-6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

Marinate the lamb a day ahead: Place the leg of lamb in a large bowl. Add the ½ cup olive oil, rosemary sprigs, orange slices and garlic. Toss to coat the lamb, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Remove the leg of lamb from the marinade and place on a rack in a small roasting pan. Put the orange slices and rosemary in the roasting pan as well, and pour the olive oil from the marinade over the leg of lamb. Season the meat generously with salt and pepper. Roast in the preheated oven to desired doneness (internal temperature of 135 degrees for medium). This could take from 45 min-2 hours, depending on your liking. Once lamb is cooked, remove from the roasting pan and set aside to rest for 15-20 minutes before slicing.

Ratatouille:
-2 lbs. ripe red tomatoes, cut into 1 inch chunks
-6 Tbsp. olive oil
-1 lb. eggplant, diced into 1 inch pieces
-2 large white or yellow onions, chopped
-8 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
-2 sweet peppers, diced into large chunks
-1 lb. zucchini, yellow squash, or combination,
cut into 1 inch chunks
-2 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves
-juice of 1 lemon
-salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place tomatoes and juices on a rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with 2 tablespoons oil and bake until thickened, 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. While the tomatoes are cooking, toss eggplant with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Let sit 20 minutes, then squeeze out excess liquid and discard. In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat 4 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until onions and garlic are soft, about 5 minutes. Add peppers and cook, stirring, until crisp-tender, 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini and/or squash, and thyme to pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture comes to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low, partially cover, and cook at a gentle simmer until vegetable are tender but not mushy, 15 minutes. Season to taste with lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Serve as accompaniment to roast leg of lamb.

Serves 6; Recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
3 firm-ripe freestone peaches, pitted and cut into quarters
6 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tsp. olive oil
6 slices bacon, cut into 1” strips
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
2 cups baby spinach, washed and dried (optional)
salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Arrange the peach quarters in a glass baking dish. Place ½ sprig of thyme onto each peach quarter and set aside.

In a small skillet over medium heat, heat the olive oil with the bacon strips. Cook, stirring occasionally, until bacon is cooked to your liking. Drain the fat from the bacon and set bacon pieces aside – keep the bacon fat!

Pour bacon fat over the peaches in the baking dish. Sprinkle 1 Tbsp. of the brown sugar over the peaches, season to taste with salt and pepper and roast in the oven until peaches are just softened – about 15 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.

While peaches are cooling: reduce the remaining 1 Tbsp. brown sugar with the balsamic vinegar over medium heat in a small pot until the vinegar is syrupy. Be careful not to over reduce or the vinegar will taste burnt. Set aside.

If using the baby spinach, arrange it on a medium sized platter. Place the warm peaches on top of the spinach topped with the bacon pieces. Crumble the blue cheese over the top and drizzle with the reduced balsamic vinegar.

Serve as a side dish for grilled pork or chicken. Enjoy!

Recipe by Courtney McDonald; Serves 6

Ingredients:
6 firm-ripe freestone peaches, any variety
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp. local honey
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. dried lavender buds
pinch of salt
1 basket strawberries, washed,
hulled and quartered
1 quart frozen yogurt (recipe follows)
or vanilla ice cream
1/2 cup “Wing Nuts” trail mix

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Wash each peach and cut in half. Remove the pit and line the peach halves, cut side up, on a cookie sheet in a single layer. Drizzle the peaches with ¼ cup honey, then with the olive oil. Sprinkle the lavender buds and pinch of salt evenly over the top and roast in the preheated oven until edges are beginning to brown and peaches are slightly soft – about 10 minutes. While peaches are roasting, toss the strawberries with the remaining 2 Tbsp. honey. Let sit for a few minutes – the juices from the strawberries will create a syrup in the bowl.
Remove the peaches from the oven to cool slightly. Carefully transfer peaches to a serving platter. Top each peach half with a scoop of yogurt sorbet or vanilla ice cream and garnish with the macerated strawberries. Sprinkle the Wing Nuts trail mix over the top. Serve immediately.

Yogurt Sorbet
Makes 1 Quart

Ingredients:
2 cups St. Benoit whole milk yogurt
1 Tbsp. vodka
1/4 cup local honey
1 ½ cups heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar

In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, vodka and honey. In a medium saucepot, bring 1 cup of the cream and the sugar to a boil. Quickly remove from the heat and whisk in the remaining ½ cup of cream. In a slow stream, whisk the warm cream into the yogurt mixture until smooth. Refrigerate mixture overnight to chill, the freeze in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions.

Serves 6 – recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-2 medium winter squash, such as acorn, kabocha or butternut
-3 Tbsp. local honey
-4 Tbsp. salted or unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
-8 sprigs fresh thyme
-salt and pepper, to taste
-8 slices bacon, cooked to your liking

Preheat oven to 425. Carefully cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Lay out the squash on a rimmed baking sheet or large glass baking dish, cut side up. Drizzle evenly with the honey and butter pieces and season to taste with salt and pepper. Place a sprig of thyme on each piece of squash.

Add a few tablespoons of water to the bottom of the baking dish, cover with foil and bake until squash is tender, 30-40 minutes. Remove foil and allow to caramelize for another 5 minutes. Add the cooked bacon slices just to warm and serve immediately!

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