Some people think vegetables will spoil more quickly if you wash them days in advance. Well, I keep all my washed vegetables in airtight plastic or glass snap-ware in the refrigerator, and they don't seem to spoil any more quickly than dirty vegetables. The only vegetables I don't wash in advance are mushrooms because I fear their turning slimy.
This autumn meal for 2 is very simple, attractive, easy, and quick. Plus it's comfort food!
1 stone fruit like peach or plum, washed and sliced
1 can vegetarian baked beans, warmed on stove or in microwave
1 recipe of Joy of Cooking's buttermilk cornbread
1 bunch collards, stemmed, torn into bite-sized pieces, and washed
The cornbread mix comes together in about 3 minutes and bakes for 25 minutes. The collards should simmer in salted water for 12 to 25 minutes, depending on your preference. Drain the collards and press out the excess water with the back of a wooden spoon.
On each plate arrange one slice of cornbread, a heap of collards, and a fan of fruit slices. Add a small pretty bowl to the side of each plate with some warm beans.
Enjoy with iced tea or a mug of cider. Offer seconds of everything.