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A Must-Have Eating Guide and Recipe From Chef and TV Host Alton Brown

Written on October 18, 2011 at 1:03 pm , by

Alton Brown suggests hitting the farm stand for fresh, seasonal food. (Photo courtesy of Welch's)

It’s harvest time across the country, and there’s no better way to celebrate than by eating local, seasonal foods. Of course you can stop by your farmers’ market to pick up fresh items to prepare at home, but a growing number of restaurants are also offering seasonal fare.

“Fall is really the simplest cooking time,” says Alton Brown, host of Iron Chef America, Next Iron Chef (season four debuts October 30!) and Good Eats. “You don’t have to do much to the produce at this time of year because it’s when both nutrients and flavor are at their highest levels.”

To make it easier to enjoy the fall flavors he loves so much, Brown teamed up with Welch’s and Zagat for their “Taste the Harvest Guide.” (To download a free copy, click here.) It lists and reviews 196 farm-to-table restaurants in 16 cities across the U.S., and also includes a few healthy recipes, profiles of farmers and tips from dietitians, including Welch’s own health and nutrition manager Casey Lewis, R.D.

“The Guide is designed to help people get excited about eating produce. A diet full of colorful produce is also rich in healthy vitamins, minerals and nutrients,” Lewis says.

But one can’t live on restaurant food alone. When you decide to hit your local market and buy items for meals at home, consider grabbing Brown’s current picks: chard, pumpkin and squash. He says that since they taste so great right now, a simple treatment like roasting works best.

But what to serve with alongside all of this delicious produce? Brown says that his chickpea falafel is one recipe everyone should know since it’s simple to make at home. Bonus: You can control the baking method and reduce the fat from a traditional falafel recipe by baking instead of frying!

For Brown’s essential falafel recipe, straight from his new cookbook Good Eats 3: The Later Years, Read more