by Solara Goldwynn, Hatchet & Seed –
Autumn is my favourite time of year, with the crisp air, the bright blue skies, and so much goodness coming out of the garden. It’s also the busiest time of year for my small business, an edible landscaping company that I own with my husband. This is the time of year when we teach the most gardening workshops, install the largest number of gardens, plant the fruit trees and berry bushes, and complete all the other jobs that come along with growing gardens and transitioning to winter. Our business is our other baby, the other one that keeps us up at night and occupies our hopes and fears alongside the joys and stresses of raising a toddler. Business owners never really get to “leave it at work,” as the responsibilities and details seem to follow us around. Our conversations in moments over morning coffee and packing lunch for daycare or late at night after storytime involve scheduling, marketing, interesting new fruit varieties to try in our landscapes, and how to engage new clients. It’s the grand juggling act, but is also an incredibly empowering and inspired way to live.
It all comes back to good local food in our family, and at this time of year it’s especially important to nourish our bodies to prepare for cold and flu season. It’s also the time of year when we can literally see the fruits of our labour.
I’ve been making broths and sauerkraut with veggies from the farmers market and from our gardens to keep our family healthy, and most nights at least one of them accompanies our dinner. This recipe is a delicious and comforting meal that combines the best of late season crops: eggplant and tomatoes.
- 12 oz pasta (I use brown rice penne)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 med. eggplant, sliced thinly and cut into ½ inch pieces
- ½ tsp smoked sea salt
- 2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
- 1 small red onion, chopped fine
- 5 good sized Roma tomatoes,
cut into cubes
- 3 tbsp fresh parsley
- 3 tbsp broth (I use chicken or
beef bone broth)
- feta cheese or hemp hearts (optional)
Cook the pasta as per package instructions; a little al dente is best.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Add eggplant and smoked sea salt; cook until brown on both sides. Add garlic, onions, tomatoes, parsley and broth. Simmer until tomatoes fall apart and most of the liquid has evaporated.
Serve the pasta with sauce and feta cheese or hemp hearts on top. Add a side of fermented vegetables and a glass of red wine and give cheers to the small business owners in your life!