You can feel it in the air; the weather starting to shift just slightly, the days getting shorter and the nights creeping in a little sooner – fall will be here soon. At the end of the month, we will officially say “goodbye” to summer and “hello” to fall. With that salutation comes the introduction to sweater weather, boots and scarves, and dewy mornings with cool evenings along with some really amazing produce we get during this season.
We are not only saying “goodbye” to summer, but it is also the end of the season for peaches, raspberries, blueberries, apricots, and cucumber. At the same time that these light and delicious summer fruits and vegetables are ending their season, coming into season are figs, pears, plums, butternut squash, kale, leeks, and pumpkin. These rich fall flavors are just starting their season in the month of September!
I have got some great recipes to usher in the season. Let’s start with pears! Since the weather hasn’t quite turned blustery cold yet, ice cream is still perfect for September. Pear pulp plus some extra time spinning in the ice cream maker makes this non-dairy sorbet creamier than Haagen Dazs but of course with a fraction of the calories.
Posh Pear Sorbet
- 1 1/4lb Bartlett pears, cut into cubes (leave peels on)
- 1/2 cup raw honey (organic is best)
- 1 cup water
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- Juice of one lemon
- In a medium saucepan heat 2 cups water with the honey and pears over medium high heat and bring to a boil.
- Next reduce heat to a medium simmer and partially cover the pan.
- Let pears simmer 20-25 minutes or until they are very tender.
- Remove from heat and stir in salt and lemon juice.
- Mash mixture through a fine mesh strainer or a food mill to remove skins. Whisk to blend evenly.
- Pour purée into a 9 x 13 glass baking dish and cool in the freezer for 20 minutes.
- Pour into an ice cream maker and spin/freeze for 25-40 minutes (or according to manufacturer directions). I found that the after spinning my pear sorbet for 40 minutes it became incredibly creamy.
- For a firmer texture, transfer into an airtight container such as a plastic deli cup and freeze for another 8 hours before serving.
- Serve with pear slices or a twist of lemon peel and fresh mint leaves.
Healthy Pumpkin Alfredo
via The Endless Meal
This Healthy Pumpkin Alfredo takes not only pumpkin but kale – two delicious veggies starting their season this month. It’s vegan + paleo + gluten free – Oh my! Check it out below:
For the zucchini spaghetti:
- 3 large zucchinis, spiralized or cut with a julienne peeler
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
For the healthy pumpkin alfredo:
- 1 recipe of Dreamy Vegan Cauliflower Alfredo
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the wilted garlic kale:
- 1 teaspoon butter (vegan, if needed)
- 2 garlic cloves, very finely minced
- 2 cups kale, torn
- 1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
- Optional: parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast
Since butternut squash is also coming into season, rather than giving a recipe for this beautiful squash, I thought a how-to would be fun. There is a fantastic article on TheForkedSpoon.com that not only gives you two ways to roast butternut squash, but also how to pick out the perfect squash. It’s helpful, especially if you’ve never roasted one before or if you are a little intimidated by them. You can find the link here.
We are incredibly blessed to have access to wonderful fruits and vegetables in our grocery stores so close to our homes and we are even able to have things that are in or out of season because they are flown in from all over the world right to our location. What is a growing concern is how these foods are grown and the pesticides that are used on them.
For half a century, staple food crops in the United States — such as corn, wheat, apples and citrus — have been sprayed with chlorpyrifos, a dangerous pesticide that can damage the developing brains of children, causing reduced IQ, loss of working memory, and attention deficit disorders. Chlorpyrifos is a neurotoxic pesticide widely used in U.S. agriculture. Generally sprayed on crops, it’s used to kill a variety of agricultural pests.
People are exposed to chlorpyrifos through residues on food, drinking water contamination, and toxic spray drift from pesticide applications. Children often experience greater exposure to chlorpyrifos and other pesticides because they frequently put their hands in their mouths and, relative to adults, they eat more fruits and vegetables, and drink more water and juice for their weight. [source]
You may be thinking, “what can I do?” There are many agencies fighting to ban the use of chlorpyrifos. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has a petition to keep this chemical out of grocery stores, appealing directly to the retailers and urging them to ban the produce with this chemical on them. You can help by signing that petition here.
Thank you for joining me in urging the government to keep this toxic pesticide out of our food, our water, our schools, yards, and our bodies!
As September is here and the colder weather is approaching, that also means the cold and flu season is not far behind. It is always a good reminder to use handwashing hygiene and respiratory etiquette.
Here are some great reminders for the upcoming season:
- Wash your hands when they are dirty and before eating.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
- Put your used tissue in a waste basket.
- If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hands.
- Perform hand hygiene (e.g., hand washing with non-antimicrobial soap and water, alcohol-based hand rub, or antiseptic handwash) after having contact with respiratory secretions and contaminated objects/materials.
- If soap and water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol to clean hands.
- Above all, do not put your fingers in your eyes, nose or mouth!
–Welcome September. New month, new chapter, new page, and new wishes. May the month give you courage, strength, confidence, patience, self-love, and inner peace.