A drive up to Massachusetts to visit old friends and see the foliage was canceled at the last minute after the Dr. was called in to work. He made up for it by changing the car reservations and driving us closer from the city and letting me drag him to Stuart’s Farm’s apple orchard and pumpkin patch. The apples were still out, but there was no picking that needed to be done to the pumpkins–you can just “pick” one from the batch the farmers had already selected.
The drive was beautiful though. We both gasped when we saw the colors of the leaves while driving over Croton Point Park. The water was as still along the reservoir. It was definitely fall and the night called for us to test the squashes we brought home with us. Use wild rice instead of orzo if you want this dish to be heftier.
a small acorn squash, halved, seeded and cut into small chunks
1 apple, cored, halved, sliced
1 small sweet potato, peeled, cut into small chunks
a handful of shallots, peeled
1 cup of orzo
a handful of cilantro, finely chopped
a dollop of honey
oil, salt, pepper
1. Toss the squash, potato and shallots in a large bowl with a splash of oil, salt and pepper. Turn out onto a large baking pan. Roast for about 30 minutes. Then remove from oven and add the apples. Using tongs, slip the squash and potatoes to make sure the other sides are browning, too. Roast for another 10. The squash and potatoes should be tender and the onions caramelized.
2. In the meantime, cook the orzo. Boil some water and cook the orzo for about 10 minutes. Drain and fluff with a fork to avoid sticking. Set aside until ready to assemble the dish.
3. In the meantime, make the dressing. In a small bowl, combine some olive oil, cilantro, honey and some lime juice. You might need to drop in a splash of warm water or two to dilute the honey. Season with salt and pepper.
4. To assemble everything, use a large bowl and toss roasted vegetables together with the orzo and the cilantro-lime dressing. I use my hands to make sure that the vegetables are evenly distributed.