Boston chefs share their favorite flavors of fall

Barbara Lynch

1. Barbara Lynch, No. 9 Park/ Menton
Ingredient: Chestnuts
Use: Roasted Scottish partridge with candied chestnuts
“Chestnuts have a wonderful, mellow sweetness that works with the rich and rustic flavors of fall to really balance savory dishes. I love including them with game, mushrooms, squash and foie gras. If you can find them, I recommend using frozen chestnuts, which are easy and high quality.”

2. Andrew Yeo, Artisan Bistro
Ingredient: Butternut squash
Use: Venison with butternut squash tamale
“I love the color and flavor. It’s not overpowering and makes a great companion to both fish and meat. The tamale incorporates squash in two different ways: roasted and pureed. It’s a unique fall twist to a traditional ethnic dish.”

3. Lydia Shire, Towne Stove and Spirits/Scampo
Ingredient: Chuck steak
Use: Swiss steak
“I love the comforting, bold flavors that a good chuck brings. The key to this dish is the flour you pound into the meat, which [results] in the silkiest sauce after a three- to four-hour braise. This dish will warm the cockles of your heart and fill your home with the most wonderful aromas. Toss in a little football-watching for good measure!”

4.  Jody Adams, Rialto/Trade
Ingredient: Pumpkin and pomegranate
Use: Pumpkin soup and pomegranate-glazed eggplant
“These two ingredients make a perfect pair for the season. Pumpkin just says fall. A traditional ingredient that has a foundation of flavor, pumpkin pairs beautifully with bacon, duck and herbs. And then pomegranate brings a crisp and refreshing flavor. It cuts through the heaviness of fellow fall ingredients.”

5. Armand Toutaint, Turner Fisheries
Ingredient: Molasses
Use: Buttercup bisque
“The earthy dark color says fall to me. Not only does it lend itself well to the rich taste and texture of squash and root vegetables, it also gives dishes a touch of sweetness without being overly sugary — it doesn’t change the flavor of the dish, but enhances it.”  
 
6. Chris Bussell, BoMA Restaurant + Bar
Ingredient:
Squashes
Use: Mexican spiced squash with hen of the wood mushroom
“I particularly like kabocha and buttercup squash. They have a deep earthy flavor with nutty sweetness. I rub the interior with Mexican spices such as guajillo chili and cocoa, add a dash of lime and pair it with hen of the wood mushrooms, which is another fall favorite of mine.”

7. Robert Sisca, Bistro du Midi
Ingredient: Pumpkin
Use: Goat cheese gnocchi
“Once the cool weather of fall comes, I love the versatility of different styles of pumpkins. I currently have three different types on my menu. Pumpkins are an underrated vegetable for people to cook with.”

8. Kevin Long, Empire/Big Night
Ingredient:
Wild mushrooms
Use: Tempura fried maitake mushroom roll
“They are unbelievable this season. Absolutely brilliant and fresh, and the quality is unheard of, and the maitake I’m using are local. I’m also using a chicken mushroom in an updated version of an old classic, hot and sour soup.”

9. Bill Brodsky, City Landing
Ingredient: Citrus
Use: Citrus carpaccio salad with Gorgonzola and toasted fennel seeds
“Typically, people think of heavier ingredients, but this is when citrus is in prime season. It’s at its best for flavor with a peak balance of bitter and sweet, and it brings back a little bit of summer.”

10. Susan Regis, Upstairs on the Square
Ingredient: Fresh sage toasted in brown butter
Use: Duck and fig ragout with brown butter sage
“This dresses up so many fall dishes. These glistening, crispy, dark green sage leaves also look beautiful and autumnal — it makes the perfect fall garnish, and tastes delicious. It’s also easy for the home cook to make.”



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