French Lamb and Rye Berry Braise

Serves 6.

A wonderful warming dish when the winds of October blow the trees bare. Rye berries are available in whole-food co-ops and the natural-food sections of most area grocery stores. Rye has a peppery flavor that works nicely with the lamb. Lacking rye berries, barley works, too. From "The New Whole Grains Cookbook," by Robin Asbell.

• 3/4 c. rye berries, washed

• 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

• 2 lb. boneless lamb shoulder, cut into 2-in. cubes

• Salt

• 1 tsp. freshly cracked pepper, plus more to taste

• 1 large onion, chopped (2 c.)

• 1 (14-oz.) can diced tomato, drained

• 1 stick cinnamon

• 1 bay leaf

• 2 c. beef stock or chicken stock

• 1 c. red wine

• Zest of 1 large orange, pared in long strips

• 1 c. chopped parsley


Soak the rye berries overnight in cold water.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. In a heavy, 4-quart braising pot with a lid, heat the oil over medium-high for a minute. Sear the lamb cubes in batches, salting and peppering to taste as you go. Remove with a slotted spatula to a bowl.

When the lamb is browned, drain the oil from the seared lamb back into the pan. Add the onion and tomato and cook until the onion is soft and golden. Add the 1 teaspoon cracked pepper, cinnamon, bay leaf, stock, wine, orange zest strips, lamb cubes and drained ryeberries. Bring to a simmer, cover, then bake for 11/2 hours. When the lamb chunks shred when pressed with a fork, they are done. Add the parsley. Remove the orange zest and bay leaf before serving. The rye will stay slightly crunchy.

Serve immediately or all week long.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 397 Fat 19 g Sodium 212 mg

Carbohydrates 19 g Saturated fat 5 g Calcium 64 mg

Protein 38 g Cholesterol 110 mg Dietary fiber 3 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 bread/starch, 5 lean meat, 1 fat.

Apple-Streusel-Topped Pumpkin Cake

Serves 8.

This moist cake is topped with a lovely crumble; it's dense and rich with pumpkin and apples. From "The New Whole Grains Cookbook."

• 3 tbsp., plus 1/2c. unsalted butter, divided

• 4 large Granny Smith (or local tart) apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced

• 5 tbsp. granulated white sugar, divided

• 1 tsp. ground cinnamon

• 11/4 c. whole-wheat pastry flour

• 1 c. brown sugar

• 1/2 tsp. salt

• 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

• 1 tsp. baking soda

• 3/4 c. canned pumpkin

• 1/3 c. sour cream

• 2 eggs


Butter and flour a 9-inch-across, 3-inch-deep springform pan. In a large sauté pan, melt 3 tablespoons butter, then sauté the apples over medium-high heat until softened and browned in spots, about 5 minutes.

Mix 3 tablespoons white sugar and the cinnamon in a cup and sprinkle over the apples, then toss and cook until the liquids are thick and bubbly.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Dice the remaining 1/2 cup butter and let it come to room temperature.

In a stand mixer, combine the flour, brown sugar and salt and mix. Toss in the diced butter and mix until the butter is broken into small bits. Measure 2/3 cup of the mixture into a small bowl, and stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons white sugar and pie spice to make the streusel.

To the mixer, add the baking soda and mix, then add the pumpkin, sour cream and eggs, beating until smooth. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.

Distribute the apple sauté over the batter, then sprinkle the streusel topping over that. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Cool on a rack.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 433 Fat 20 g Sodium 340 mg

Carbohydrates 64 g Saturated fat 12 g Calcium 67 mg

Protein 5 g Cholesterol 101 mg Dietary fiber 5 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 2 bread/starch, 2 other carb, 4 fat.