Remember being a kid and pulling up a wild onion in the front yard? Yanking on the slick, chive-like fronds and unearthing a small globe of an onion introduced many of us to the magical processes that take place in the dirt. Autumn is the time for harvesting root vegetables, which are currently filling the market bins, from onions, carrots, turnips, and beets to sweet potatoes, ginger, fennel, and rutabaga. You'll also be able to find them at local restaurants as they freshen up their fall menus with seasonal produce. Here are three new fall menus to try tonight.
Though the dishes are sure to rotate often, the Macintosh's current fall-inspired menu is simply beautiful. Take the list of starters. For one, there's the crispy pork belly served with pole beans, Marcona almonds, radish, and lardo vinaigrette. Another hearty fall dish is the chestnut celery root soup, served with The Mac's housemade bacon jam.
In the entrées, the crispy duck leg combines numerous fall flavors with golden beets, pickled mustard seed, chestnuts, fall greens, and celeriac goat cheese purée. Alongside the glazed confit pork shoulder, the farro piccolo is complemented by an array of braised root vegetables. Tonight, those are parsnips, sunchokes, rutabagas as well as some butternut squash. The dish is finished with a sorghum mustard jus.
The fall vegetable plate takes the best of the seasonal bounty and will rotate frequently. Tonight, the dish will include Brussels sprouts, rainbow carrots, and parsnips with a butternut squash purée. Abundant Seafood's Mark Marhefka provides fresh golden tilefish for The Mac's seafood entrée. The fish is served with caramelized fennel puree, pearl onion, carrots, tat soi, spaetzle, and a cardamom orange butter sauce.
For a little more casual setting, Black Bean Company on James Island just debuted its new dinner menu too. Of the autumnal choices, the herb-roasted chicken caught our eye. The chicken is served over thyme and rosemary mash with sautéed kale, apple chow chow, and an herb compound butter. The seared duck breast also sounds good. The breast is honey glazed and placed over apple sausage and a butternut squash, spinach risotto. The farmer's plate combines balsamic marinated portabella mushrooms, sundried tomatoes, spinach, and other seasonal local vegetables atop a basil risotto.
Out on Johns Island, Chef Fred Neuville has crafted a new fall menu at Fat Hen, featuring house-made hominy in two of the new dishes. For one, the seared sea scallops come with roasted butternut squash, hominy, southern peas, pistou, and a celery aioli. The spaghetti squash hominy sauté pairs hominy with artichoke hearts, olives, herb pistou, roasted tomatoes, goat cheese, and a shallot butter. The seared duck breast gets a fall makeover, with smoked beets and blue cheese dressing over roasted local pumpkin. If you're looking for a salad, try the poached pear arugula drizzled with a lemon peppercorn sorghum glaze.