Last week, instead of a Sunday at the Farmers’ Market, I found myself preparing a Hurricane Party. I was on Cape Cod and we appeared to be in Earl’s path. (At the time I bought my ingredients, he was officially a category 2 hurricane.)

Prepping for a hurricane really works up an appetite when you live at the beach: put up the shutters, pull in the outdoor furniture, the mats, the buoy collection, lock all the window… you get the idea. So, after all that work, the meal with which you ride out the hurricane better be satisfying.

We planned on trying a clam pie from the Centerville Pie Shop, a Cape Cod institution so highly touted by Oprah that the company nearly went out of business trying to keep up with demand created by her shower of praise. To accompany the hearty pie, I made a fennel apple slaw, “Annette’s” kale salad and hot chocolate mini bundt with a side of cold cream cheese frosting (from the Kiss My Bundt cookbook, of course).

By nine pm, the salad and slaw were washed down by the last of the Champagne in the house and the pie was fed to the dogs. (I just don’t get 2 layers of crust filled with chunks of naked, stewed chicken drowning in gravy.) The cake was in the oven and Earl, well, he broke apart somewhere between Virginia and Nantucket.

Fennel Apple Slaw
1 small fennel bulb, shaved
1-2 crisp apples, cored and shaved
2 tbsp sweet onion, finely chopped
1 tsp canola oil
1-2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 oz Gouda, shredded
1 tbsp fennel fronds, chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Toss fennel through 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar in a large bowl. Mix in Gouda, fennel fronds and season with salt and pepper. If needed, add more apple cider vinegar 1 tsp at a time up to 1 tbsp.

Annette’s Kale Salad
1 medium bunch kale
1 oz Parmesan
1-2 tsp olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
salt to taste

Chop kale into bite-sized pieces. Shave Parmesan with a vegetable peeler and toss with kale and 1 tsp olive oil and 1 tbsp lemon juice. Add additional olive oil and lemon juice to taste and season with salt before serving.

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