Easy One Pan Spaghetti and Meatballs

by Susan Reesor

Here’s a tasty meal for a cold winter’s night or a fast dish to take to a potluck meal. The pasta and the meatballs cook in the baking dish in the marinara sauce along with some extra water. It’s delicious and best of all there are hardly any preparation dishes to wash. Do you want to eat more vegetables? Add some chopped, frozen spinach to the tomato sauce. Picky eaters may not even notice it.

Serves 4-6
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

12 ounces spaghetti, broken in half
24 oz. (730 ml) jar of marinara sauce (or make your own quick tomato sauce from a 28 oz can of whole tomatoes, onion, garlic, oregano, basil, salt, pepper)
2 cups water, plus extra hot water as needed
1 pound lean ground beef
¾ cup bread crumbs
⅓ cup prepared basil pesto
Salt and pepper
Grated Parmesan cheese

  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 475 degrees. Grease a 9”x13” baking dish. Spread the uncooked, broken spaghetti into the prepared dish.
  2. Using hands, combine beef, bread crumbs, pesto, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper in bowl just until combined. Break off and roll mixture into 1-inch meatballs (about 16 meatballs).
  3. Pour marinara sauce and water over pasta and toss gently with tongs to coat.
  4. Nestle the meatballs on top of pasta in dish. Cover the top tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes.
  5. Remove dish from oven and stir pasta thoroughly, scraping sides and bottom of dish. Return uncovered dish to oven and continue to bake until pasta is tender and sauce is thickened, 5 to 8 minutes.
  6. Remove dish from oven. Toss to coat the pasta and meatballs with sauce, adjusting sauce consistency with extra hot water as needed. Let cool for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Serve with grated Parmesan.

Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen.

Changing seasons and looking back

by Jay Reesor

As is our tradition in the fall, our farm market closes the first Saturday after Hallowe’en.  I am really glad that we have chosen that date to close because this year, November’s weather was, well, less than ideal! The combination of  some very cold,  sometimes snowy, sometimes wet and almost always grey weather has made it difficult to get fall work done.  Everything from getting the straw on the strawberries to getting everything stowed away for the winter was challenging.

And for my neighbours, who have crops still in the field waiting to be harvested, this fall’s weather has being very frustrating.  I’m hoping that the brunt of winter can hold off until at least Christmas.

Looking back, it was a great farming season with excellent crops of strawberries, sweet corn, pumpkins and squash. Sure, a couple of our minor crops were a little disappointing, but there’s always next year.  We’re always thankful for our wonderful customers stopping by regularly to support us.

At this point, southern Ontario is fortunate to have fairly steady and consistent weather patterns, favourable to growing good crops. I am very grateful for good soil and reasonable weather to grow our crops. I’m also grateful for amazing people with whom to work helping us to grow good food. Not everyone in our world has this privilege!

Strawberry Cream Scones

This is a tender scone that you can stir up quickly in one bowl.  Because they are made with cream you avoid the sometimes tricky step of cutting in butter. Serve them with freshly cut strawberries and whipped cream, strawberry jam, or enjoy them plain.

Ingredients

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup whipping cream (35%)
1/2 cup chopped strawberries (optional)
sugar & cream, for sprinkling (optional)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 425F.

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Begin to stir in the cream and then gently add the strawberries, if using. Stir only until the dough comes together.

Gather the dough into a ball with your hands, adding any leftover bits from the side of the bowl. Place it on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Fold it over itself two or three times and pat it into a 1-inch thick circle.

Brush the top with a bit of cream and sprinkle with sugar. Using a large, sharp knife cut the dough into 6 or 8 wedges and separate them, so that they have room to rise and to brown. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden. Serve warm.

Makes 6-8 scones.

Adapted from Dinner With Julie, Rhubarb Cream Scones.

Rickety Uncles

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Get your candy fix quick with this easy treat. If you love caramel flavour this is the cookie/candy for you and the oats give it a bit of a “healthy” spin.

1/2 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups rolled oats
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt

In a bowl stir together the oats, baking powder and salt.
In a heavy saucepan melt the butter. Add the brown sugar raising the heat to medium-high until it boils. Let it bubble gently without stirring for a few minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in the dry ingredients. Then stir in the vanilla.
Press into an ungreased 8”x8” pan.
Flatten the mixture evenly in the pan with back of spoon.
Bake at 300 degrees for 20 minutes or until lightly browned.
Cool, cut into squares and enjoy!

Try a fresh turkey this Thanksgiving

 

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We are now taking orders for Thanksgiving turkeys. Our turkeys are locally raised and grain fed without growth hormones or medications.

To place your order call or speak to staff at Reesor’s Farm Market, 905-640-4568 or Reesor’s Market & Bakery, 905-640-2270.
Order early to ensure your desired size:
Small: 12-14 lbs.
Medium: 15-17 lbs.
Large: 18-20 lbs.
X-Large:  23 +  lbs.
Price: $3.79/lb.

All the turkeys will be ready for pick up at Reesor’s Farm Market, 10825 Ninth Line at Elgin Mills Rd., Sat., Oct. 8th after 9:00 am.

Reesor’s Farm Market is now open for the season

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Welcome to a new farm market season shopping in the fresh air at Reesor’s Farm Market. Our returning and new staff are ready to serve you bringing you the best of our farm and other Ontario farms at 10825 Ninth Line, Markham at Elgin Mills Rd.

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Creamy, dreamy rhubarb pie

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If you have “fear of making pie” this pie is for you!  It’s easy to make, uses just a few ingredients and making the crust is low stress because it uses cookie crumbs. The tang of rhubarb mellows out in the creamy filling. We’ve made it here with Molasses Crinkles cookie crumbs that contrast well in taste with the rhubarb.

Ingredients

Crust
6 Molasses Crinkle Cookies from Reesor’s Market & Bakery (our chewy, ginger cookie), or 1½ cups of cookie crumbs that you think goes well with rhubarb.

Filling
3 cups chopped rhubarb
3/4 cup sugar
3 Tbsp cornstarch
3/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup 35% whipping cream or Half & Half cream
2 large eggs
1/4 tsp almond extract or vanilla
pinch salt

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Make the crust
Place 6 Molasses Crinkle Cookies in blender or food processor. Chop until they are fine crumbs. Using a soup spoon press the finely crushed cookies evenly into the bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie plate.  Set aside.

Make the filling
Combine the rhubarb, sugar and the cornstarch in a medium saucepan. Add a quarter cup of  water. Bring to a simmer, stirring often, until the rhubarb softens and the mixture thickens, add more water if necessary, watching that it doesn’t burn.
In a medium bowl whisk together the sour cream, cream, eggs, almond extract and salt. Pour the cream mixture over the rhubarb and stir together.
Pour the mixture into the cookie crumb crust. Place the pie on a cookie sheet so that it’s easy to get the pie into and out of the oven.

Bake for about 40-45 minutes, until the pie is golden, partially set in the middle and set around the edges. Cool. Then refrigerate for a few hours, until chilled or enjoy it slightly warm.

Serves 6-8.

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Crunchy Cajun Corn Salad

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This zesty salad can be made with fresh or frozen sweet corn kernels. When you have some  leftover cooked corn on the cob just cut off the kernels and whip up a salad.  Since frozen corn is blanched (lightly cooked before freezing), you can use it right out of the freezer when making the salad.  Add the amount of Tabasco sauce or chill powder you prefer to get the right amount of heat.

Salad Ingredients
4 cups corn, freshly cooked or frozen (about 4 cobs)
1 large green or red pepper, or combination of both colours, chopped fine
6 green onions chopped
1/2 cup minced parsley
1 cup chopped tomatoes or cherry tomatoes

Mix all salad ingredients together in a serving bowl. Set aside.

Dressing
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp mayonnaise (Hellmann’s Light works well)
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce, fresh minced chilis or chilli powder, to taste
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 to 1/2 cup olive oil, to taste

In a large bowl mix together all the dressing ingredients, except olive oil, until combined. Add olive oil in a slow stream, whisking until slightly thickened

Pour dressing over the other salad ingredients and toss gently to coat. Cover and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight before serving.

6-8 servings.

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It was 30 years ago this summer…..

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by Jay Reesor

It was 30 years ago this summer that we first opened up Reesor Farm Market on the 9th Line. Although our current building is quite basic, our original market was just a farm wagon with a canvas roof.

Over the years the variety of produce, baking and foods that we offer has increased along with our customer base. As time passed and to make life better for everybody we built a little market building. Every few years we’ve added some new features and the farm market grew to include a bakery, coolers and more fresh and local food.

This week I was glad to welcome my parents (in the photo above) to opening day of our farm market season. Both my dad and my mom physically helped to build the market and have been a tremendous support to me in running the farm and the market. My wife Miriam also makes huge contributions as well. It has taken a lot of work over the years to build our business and she has always been supportive. I am hoping for a good season for all of us this year growing and making good food.