Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A September Lunch

The Lunch Bunch comes once a month
Except this year . . . 
We've missed many a month this Spring
I've a fat file of recipes I want to try
And no one to try them on!

But we were all together in Sepember
of us!

I first chose the menu,
then the table follows
I prefer white tablecloths and napkins
And, of course, there is my beloved
Blue transfer ware!

Yellow flowers in a Williamsburg flower frog
Store flowers -- the garden is winding down!

A menu, of course,
the French water goblets
A lace tablecloth
The Spode Blue Room

A white damask napkin in one of my silver rings
and Jim's grandmother's cutlery

The lunch?

If I do casseroles, I like individual ones
They look pretty when they're in a dish
versus piled on a plate
(piled on a plate looks like a dog's breakfast!)

A Gaida recipe
penne with roasted vegetables and cheeses

Served with a salad with tomatoes and carrot
and roasted garlic bread

Dessert is an old family dessert

Dutch Peach Pie
Grandmother made it,
perhaps her mother as well
And as far as I know it's never been written down
Passed from mother to daughter-in-law by mouth only

And only served in the summer
during peach season
For it is a fresh peach pie!

At home, we always cut it into fourths
(for it is a thin pie)
But the girls wouldn't hear of it
So I cut it into sixths
Which left two pieces
for Husband Jim and I for dessert that evening.
(Of course, my childhood serving size would have been only one piece
But I played nice and shared!)
(And it is the only recipe that I will never share)

The table setting that I like best
Is not that perfect table of the before luncheon

But the empty, messy table of the after luncheon
Not a crumb remains
The coffee pot is empty
It means that everyone had a good time!

The casserole is good, easy, and can be made ahead of time.
I baked it a little less because mine were in smaller dishes.
And I'm sure you can use whatever vegetables you want


2 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 red peppers, cored and cut into 1 inch wide strips
2 summer squash, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 cremini mushrooms, halved
1 yellow onion, peeled and sliced into 1-inch strips
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 tablespoon dried Italian herb mix or herbs de Provence
1 pound penne pasta
3 cups marinara sauce (store bought or homemade)
1 cup grated fontina cheese
1/2 cup grated smoked mozzarella
1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus 1/3 cup for topping
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

On a baking sheet, toss the peppers, zucchini, squash, mushrooms, and onions with olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and dried herbs. Roast until tender, about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook for about 6 minutes. Since you will be cooking the pasta a second time in the oven, you want to make sure the inside is still hard. Drain in a colander.

In a large bowl, toss the drained pasta with the roasted vegetables, marinara sauce, cheeses, peas, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Using a wooden spoon, gently mix, until all the pasta is coated with the sauce and the ingredients are combined.

Pour the pasta into a greased 9 by 13-inch pan. Top with the remaining 1/3 cup Parmesan and butter pieces. Bake until top is golden and cheese melts, about 25 minutes.

NOTE:   I only made a half recipe which filled 5 gratin dishes plus one bigger one.    I also baked it at 350 instead of the higher 450.   And since I couldn't find smoked mozzarella and fontina cheese, I used the Italian type cheeses I could find at our grocery store.

It's Thursday and I'm sharing my September Lunch table with Susan at Between Naps On the Porch for Tablescape Thursday


Anonymous said...

So glad you ALL can be together. That peach pie looks amazing!!

LauraC said...

Please, please, please do a post on your beautiful Quaker Lace tablecloths! Show all the ones that you have and any info about where you got them. They are the only lace tablecloths that I like because they are so soft and beautiful. I am lucky to have 3 of them: one from my mother, one from a sale at an antique co-op, and one from a thrift store for $2.99.

Sonny G said...

Love those napkin rings Martha..
You lace is so pretty. I lost my only lace tablecloth when we moved:(
My Nana made fresh peach pie and she never shared her recipe with Anyone:)
There's a little diner out her in the country and the lady who cooks there also makes peach pie..I bet she'll never give up her recipe either.
Enjoy every bite and make as many as ya can.. Peaches sure dont have a long growing season.

Bernideen said...

Looks like another delicious meal served very elegantly! Always love the menu touch!

Christine @ Rustic-Refined said...

Such a pretty table and I am loving the dishes. Plus the food looks just wonderful!

LORY said...

Very pedigreed setting! Love the silver, damask and spode. Quite lovely... :-)


Jocelyn said...

Beautiful table. Beautiful meal.

Jocelyn @

Anonymous said...

Love your table and the food looks delightful.

Pat said...

I have always thought of September as a "Time To Gather". Not only the Harvest, but that of gathering family & friends together.
Your tablescape is lovely, as always, dear friend!!!
Love your individual baking dishes for pasta casseroles. I was pleased to see grated carrot in your salad. Color, texture and crunch!!!
Now, you know we're going to try to figure out how you made that fresh peach pie, don't you???