10 Warming Recipes to Cook and Love

As the weather turns cooler and we prepare to say goodbye to the Summer/Fall CSA, here are 10 recipes to help you use your last couple of shares. Of course, if you are signing up for Groundwell’s Winter CSA, you’ll want to mark this page and come back to these! We’re focusing on beets, potatoes, squash, root veggies – all the produce meant to nourish us as we embrace fall.

Fall Beet Salad
Recipe Credit: Food52

  • 3 golden beets
  • 3 red beets
  • 1cup white wine
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1bunch swiss chard, stems removed, chopped
  • 1 onion, julienned
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 orange
  • 2tablespoons honey
  • 2tablespoons dried thyme
  • 1 cup champagne vinegar
  • 3cups olive oil + a little more for roasting the beets
  • 1/2cup pecan pieces, toasted
  • 1/4cup fresh goat cheese, such as chevre
  1. Preheat oven to 400. Place beets in a roasting pan with wine, a little bit of water, and garlic cloves. Cover with aluminum foil and cook until tender, about one hour. Once beets are done cooking, remove from oven and peel skin off while still hot. Cut into small pieces and cool.
  2. Caramelize onions in a saute pan over medium high heat. Cook until they are a golden brown color and add swiss chard. Continue cooking for about 4 – 5 minutes more, or until greens have wilted. Season with a little salt and pepper. Cool
  3. To make the dressing, whisk orange juice, champagne vinegar, honey, thyme, and salt and pepper together. Slowly emulsify in the olive oil.
  4. Before serving, mix the beets, onions and chard mixture, dressing, pecans, and goat cheese together. Serve at room temperature.

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Autumn Root Vegetable Gratin with Herbs and Cheese
Recipe Credit: Food52

  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
  • 2tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4pound butternut squash
  • 3/4pound white potatoes
  • 1/2pound parsnips
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/4teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1cup grated Gruyère
  • 1cup grated Pecorino
  1. Heat the oven to 400° F. Put the milk in a small heavy saucepan and peel and smash one of the garlic cloves. Add it to the milk and then heat the milk over low heat until it just starts to bubble at the edges. Remove from the heat, add the nutmeg and let steep while you continue with the recipe.
  2. Peel the second garlic clove, cut it in half and rub the cut side around the inside of a 6-cup baking dish no more than 2 inches deep. Rub 1 tablespoon of the oil all over the inside of the dish.
  3. Peel the squash, potatoes and parsnips and cut them into very thin slices (1/8-inch thick). If you have a mandoline, now’s the time to use it.
  4. Layer the vegetables into the baking dish, alternating between squash, potato and parsnip, and fanning them into concentric, overlapping circles. Season generously with salt and pepper and sprinkle a third of the cheese and a third of the chopped herbs over the slices. Repeat twice, making the top layer as neat and tidy as you can.
  5. Remove the garlic clove from the hot milk and pour the milk evenly over the vegetables. Drizzle the remaining olive oil over the top of the gratin and bake for about 50 minutes, until the top is browned and bubbly and the vegetables yield easily when you poke them with a sharp knife. If the vegetables are tender but the top isn’t as brown as you’d like, turn on the broiler for a couple of minutes — watch it carefully so it doesn’t burn! Let the gratin cool for at least 5 minutes before serving.

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Fork-Crushed Purple Potatoes
Recipe Credit: New York Magazine

1 pound Purple Majesty or other purple potatoes, washed
4 small shallots, minced
2 tablespoons fresh-squeezed lemon juice
6 tablespoons good extra-virgin olive oil (we used half, and it was plenty for us)
Fleur de sel to taste
White pepper to taste
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped

In a large pot, cook potatoes with skins on in heavily salted boiling water until tender, approximately 15 minutes. Remove potatoes from pot, and peel them while still warm. Place potatoes in a large bowl and, using a fork, gently smash them, maintaining a fairly chunky consistency. Fold in minced shallots, lemon juice, olive oil, fleur de sel, and white pepper. Finish with parsley.

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One Pot Spanish Chicken and Potatoes
Recipe Credit: Pinch of Yum

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced (about 1 cup)
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 5 ripe tomatoes, cut in half
  • ½ of a large eggplant, skin removed and diced (2-3 cups)
  • 1½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ lbs. chicken breast meat
  • 1 large Russet potato, sliced
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon all purpose seasoning (I used poultry seasoning)
  • ½ cup fresh parsley leaves
  • crusty bread or rice for serving

Sauce: Heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium high heat. Add the onions and garlic. Scoop the juices, seeds, and flesh out of the tomatoes into the pan. Add the eggplant pieces and simmer the mixture for 5 minutes or until everything is soupy-like and softened and very good smelling. Place the scooped out tomato halves over the sauce, open side down. Simmer for a few minutes until the tomatoes have steamed and softened. Break them up in the pan and simmer for another 5-10 minutes to get all the flavors real nice and yummy.

Blend: Transfer to a blender or food processor, puree until mixture reaches your desired consistency, and stir in the salt. Taste and adjust to you liking.

Chicken and Potatoes: In the same pan, add one more quick drizzle of olive oil and add the chicken and potato slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and seasoning. Saute for a few minutes on each side until they are browned.

Finish: Add the sauce back to the pan, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes or until the chicken and potatoes are fully cooked. Top with fresh parsley and serve with crusty white bread or rice.

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Pumpkin Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
Recipe Credit: Smitten Kitchen

1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for greasing pans
1 cup firmly packed dark-brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk mixed with 1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups fresh pumpkin

Frosting
Two (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup pure maple syrup

Make the cupcakes: Heat oven to 350° (175°C). Line a cupcake pan with 18 liners.

In a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugars on medium speed until fluffy, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and pepper into a medium bowl.

Add eggs, one at a time, to the mixer, scraping down the sides after each addition. Alternate adding the flour and milk mixtures, beginning and ending with the flour. Beat in the pumpkin until smooth. Scoop the batter among the cupcake liners — you’re looking to get them 3/4 full. Bake the cupcakes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes. Cool the cupcakes on racks completely.

Make the frosting: In a stand mixer beat all the ingredients on medium until fluffy. Frost the tops of each cupcake, swirling decoratively. Refrigerate cupcakes for 30 minutes to set up frosting.

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Winter Herb Pasta with Roasted Vegetables
Recipe Credit: Not Without Salt

1 1/2 pounds vegetables, cut in 1-inch pieces (beets, sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts, onions, etc.)
10 ounces bucatini or spaghetti
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
2 tablespoons butter
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
Parmesan
Olive oil
Salt and Pepper

Toss the vegetables on a baking sheet with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast in a 425°F oven until tender and charred in parts, about 45 to 60 minutes.
While the vegetables roast boil a large pot of heavily salted water. Cook the bucatini until al dente. Drain the pasta reserving 1/2 cup pasta water.

Add the rosemary and thyme to the pasta. Pour in 1/4 cup pasta water and cook over low until the pasta looks slick and the pasta water coats the noodles. Add more if needed. Remove the pan from the heat. Add the vegetables to the pasta. Toss to combine.

In a large skillet melt the butter over medium high heat. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes, until golden and fragrant.

Add the bread crumbs to the pan then cook until golden, about 3 to 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the pasta to a serving platter then cover with bread crumbs, freshly grated Parmesan and chopped fresh Italian parsley.

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Brussel Sprouts and Steak Stir-Fry
Recipe Credit: Bon Apetit

  • 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 pound brussels sprouts, halved
  • 8 ounces flank or skirt steak, thinly sliced against the grain
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 scallions, whites chopped, greens sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped peeled ginger
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled, thinly sliced on a diagonal
  • 1 Fresno chile or jalapeño, sliced into rings
  • Steamed rice (for serving)

    Whisk oyster sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, and 1/4 cup water in a small bowl; set sauce aside.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add brussels sprouts and cook, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Cover and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes longer. Transfer to a plate; wipe out skillet.
  • Season steak with salt. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet over high heat until just beginning to smoke. Add steak in a single layer; cook until browned, about 3 minutes. Turn and cook until nearly cooked through, about 30 seconds. Add to brussels sprouts.
  • Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in same skillet. Add scallion whites, garlic, and ginger and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute, adjusting heat as needed. Add carrots and chile and cook, tossing occasionally, until carrots are slightly softened, about 2 minutes.
  • Return brussels sprouts and steak to skillet and add reserved sauce. Cook, tossing occasionally, until sauce is thickened, about 3 minutes. Serve with steamed rice and garnish with scallion greens.

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Southwest Quinoa Chili
Recipe Credit: The Kitchen Beet

2 TBSP coconut oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
1 6 oz can tomato paste
1 4 oz can diced green chiles
1 1/2 TBSP chili powder
1 1/2 TBSP cumin
2 tsp dried oregano
pinch cayenne
salt and pepper to taste
2 15 oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed thoroughly
2 large sweet potatoes, diced (about 4 cups)
8 cups vegetable stock
2 cups dry quinoa
1 cup frozen or freshly cooked corn
juice of 1/2 lime, about 1 TBSP
avocado or guacamole, to garnish
scallions, to garnish
cilantro, to garnish

Heat coconut oil over medium heat in large dutch oven or soup pot. Add onions and saute for about eight minutes, stirring occasionally so they get soft and golden. Add garlic and saute for another two minutes.

Add diced tomatoes, tomato paste, green chiles, chili powder, cumin, oregano, cayenne, salt and pepper. Cook for another two minutes, stirring frequently.

Add black beans, sweet potatoes and vegetable stock. Cook for 4 – 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add in quinoa and let simmer for 25 minutes. You’ll feel like there is a LOT of liquid in the pot, and this can’t possibly turn into chili, but it does. Stir every few minutes, to ensure quinoa doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pot.

After 25 minutes, the sweet potatoes should be fairly tender, and quinoa should be cooked (if not, give it a couple of minutes more). Squeeze the juice of half of a lime on top. If your lime isn’t particularly juicy, squeeze the other half. Add your cup of corn. Give everything a good stir. Let simmer for a couple more minutes, until corn is heated through.

Eat some, share some, freeze some. Top with avocado/guacamole, scallions and cilantro when you’re sitting down to enjoy a bowl.

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Carrot-Cashew Spread
Recipe Credit: Dula Notes

  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped into 1″ chunks
  • 3/4 C. raw cashew pieces plus a few extra for garnish, if desired
  • 15 dried apricots
  • your favorite crackers, pretzels, veggies or fruit
  1. Put carrots into a small pot and cover with 2″ of water. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes, or until tender.
  2. Add 3/4 C. cashews and apricots to the pot and continue to simmer until the carrots become very soft, about 5 minutes more.
  3. Set a colander in the sink and a 1 cup measuring cup inside. Drain ingredients, reserving 3/4 cup of the cooking liquid in the measuring cup before draining completely. Be careful when reserving the hot water, use an oven mitt while you hold the measuring cup.
  4. Put drained carrot mixture and 1/2 C. of reserved cooking liquid into a food processor and puree until smooth. Check consistency and add more cooking liquid if you like. Scrape the sides of the food processor bowl to make sure all ingredients are incorporated. Chill for at least one hour and spread onto your favorite crackers, pretzels or veggies. Garnish with extra cashews, if desired.

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Potato Cakes Benedict
Recipe Credit: Pioneer Woman

FOR THE POTATO CAKES:

  • 3 cups Chilled Leftover Mashed Potatoes
  • 1/2 cup Shredded Cheese, Your Favorite
  • 1 Egg, Lightly Beaten
  • 1/4 cup Flour
  • Vegetable Oil, As NeededFOR THE EGGS BENEDICT:
  • 8 Breakfast Sausage Patties
  • White Vinegar, For Poaching Eggs
  • 8 Eggs
  • Chopped Fresh Herbs, For GarnishFOR THE HOLLANDAISE:
  • 8 Tablespoons Butter (melted And Warm)
  • 2 Tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • 3 Egg Yolks
  • 1/2 Lemon, Juiced
  • Salt To Taste

For the potato cakes:
In a large bowl combine mashed potatoes, cheese, egg and flour.

Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Divide potato mixture into 8 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a ball and gently press into a patty. Set patties aside on prepared sheet pan.

Heat oven to 200ºF. Heat a skillet with about 1/2 inch of vegetable oil over medium heat for 4 minutes or until shimmering. Gently place potato patties in skillet. Cook on each side for 4–5 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Return to baking sheet and place in oven to keep warm.

For the eggs Benedict:
Pour oil out from skillet and quick cook sausage until browned and cooked through. Transfer to oven to keep warm.

Heat a medium saucepan of water over medium high heat until bubbles begin to form on the walls of the pot. Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar. Crack 1 egg into a small bowl. Using wooden spoon stir the water to create a whirlpool. Gently pour the egg out into the center of the whirlpool. Allow the egg to cook in the water for 2 minutes or until desired doneness. Using a slotted spoon transfer the egg to a plate. Repeat with remaining eggs. Keep water warm to reheat eggs later.

For the Hollandaise:
Melt butter and oil in a small bowl or cup in the microwave. In a blender, combine eggs and lemon juice. With the blender running, drizzle warm butter into eggs. Blend until creamy and emulsified. Season with salt to taste. If the Hollandaise is too creamy, thin with more lemon juice or water 1 teaspoon at a time.

To assemble:
Return poached eggs to warm water for 30 seconds to reheat. Serve potato cakes topped with sausage, poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce. Garnish with chopped fresh herbs.

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Weeks 14 and 15: 10 Recipes for Autumn!

The air is chilling, the first batch of applesauce is cooking and we are eagerly looking forward to winter squash. Soup is the most frequent thing on the stove and we’re soaking up every bit of the sun as it sets earlier and earlier.

In our house, the flavors and kitchen decisions start to turn a bit towards casseroles, stews and roasted veggies. It just feels appropriate, almost all of a sudden!

TKB - Potato Soup

Easy Potato Soup
Recipe Credit: The Kitchen Beet

1 – 1.5 cups diced white onion or leeks
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
6 larger new or yukon gold potatoes, diced large (This is about 4 cups once diced; please note you could use russet too!)
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
pinch of cayenne pepper
4 – 5 cups vegetable broth
3/4 cup milk
1 TBSP arrowroot powder (or cornstarch)
2 TBSP finely diced celery leaves or parsley
1/4 cup half-and-half
scallions (or chives), to garnish
freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese, to garnish

Saute onions/leeks, carrots and celery for 8 – 10 minutes, until starting to soften. Add potatoes and season with salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Stir and saute for another 5 minutes or so. Pour in the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and let it cook for about 10 – 12 minutes. The potatoes should be tender at this point. (I usually remove a potato and eat it to test, burning my mouth in the process. Very technical over here.) If the potatoes are not tender, keep simmering, checking every couple of minutes.

Slowly add the milk, stirring as you go. Add the arrowroot powder and mix it in. This will help to thicken your soup. If you have an immersion blender, now is the time to safely move your soup pot to a spot where you can use it. Please be careful, so you don’t splatter and burn yourself. If you don’t have an immersion blender, no problem. Safely blend somewhere between half and three-quarters of the soup in a regular blender, and return to the pot.

Add your celery leaves and half-and-half and give it one final stir. A note about the celery leaves – this is for those vibrant green leaves with amazing flavor that you get from the farmer’s market (or your lovely CSA, Groundswell!). If your celery doesn’t have leaves, parsley would be a great alternative! If needed, add a little more salt and pepper.

Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with scallions or chives, and a sprinkle (or in my case, giant handful) of sharp cheddar cheese. Happy soup season!

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Vegan Coconut Curry Lentil Soup with Kale
Recipe Credit: Dula Notes

  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes
  • 8 cups of water
  • 1 1/2 cups dried red lentils, washed and picked over
  • 2-3 teaspoons of fine sea salt
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 bunch of kale, leaves removed from stalk and chopped
  1. In a large pot, add the coconut oil, onion, garlic, curry powder, tumeric, chile flakes and 1/8 teaspoon of sea salt and heat over medium heat. Once the onions start sizzling, turn the heat to low and cook 4-5 minutes, stirring often, until onions are soft.
  2. Add 8 cups of water, lentils and 2 teaspoons of sea salt. Turn heat to medium low. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits of onion or seasoning that started to stick to the bottom of the pot. Put the lid on the pot and simmer for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lentils are soft. Taste to see if additional salt is needed.
  3. Stir in coconut milk and chopped kale. Cook until the coconut milk is heated and kale has wilted a bit. Taste again for seasoning and adjust with salt if necessary.

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Crispy Broccoli with Lemon and Garlic
Recipe Credit: Smitten Kitchen

1 pound fresh broccoli
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon coarse or kosher salt
A few pinches of pepper flakes, to taste
Finely grated zest of half a lemon, or more to taste
1 large or 2 small garlic cloves, minced
Juice of half a lemon, or more to taste, to finish

Heat oven to 425°F (220°C).

Prep your broccoli: Wash broccoli well — seriously, there is always a stem-colored worm hidden in the florets when I buy organic or from a farmer’s market, hooray for fewer pesticides! — and pat dry. Slice straight through the broccoli stem(s) as close to the crown of florets as possible. The crown should naturally break into several large florets, and you can cut these down into more manageable chunks. I find that less mess is made and less broccoli rubble is lost when I cut not down through the florets tops to halve chunks but up through the attached stems. (See 2nd photo above.) After cutting through the stem, I use my hands to break the floret the rest of the way in two. Don’t let the stems go to waste. I peel off the tough outer skin and knots and cut the stems into 1/2-inch segments; they cook up wonderfully this way, and at the same speed as the florets.

Drizzle the first tablespoon of oil over your baking sheet or roasting pan and brush or roll it around so it’s evenly coated. In a large bowl, toss prepared florets and stems with remaining olive oil, garlic, pepper flakes, salt and lemon zest until they’re evenly coated. Spread broccoli in an even layer in prepared pan.

Roast for 20 minutes, then use a spatula to flip and move pieces around for even cooking. Roast another 10 to 15 minutes, checking every 5, until broccoli is toasty and as crisp as you like it. (As you can see, we like a serious char on ours.)

From the oven, taste a floret for seasoning and add more salt and pepper flakes if needed. Shower with fresh lemon juice and eat immediately.

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Winter Vegetable Chowder with Crispy Cabbage, Lemon and Mustard
Recipe Credit: The First Mess

chowder ingredients:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large cooking onion, small dice (1 3/4 cups)
1 leek, small dice (white + light green part only)
4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
4-5 thyme sprigs, leaves removed and chopped
1-2 parsnips, peeled and chopped (1 1/2 cups)
1/2 celery root, peeled and chopped (1 1/2 cups)
2 heaped cups of small-chopped cauliflower florets
1 1/2 tbsp grainy mustard
salt + pepper to taste
2 tsp nutritional yeast (optional)
1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning
1/4 cup lemon juice
3 1/2 cups vegetable stock

crispy cabbage ingredients:
1/4 head of a green cabbage, cut into 1/2 inch slices
2 tsp olive oil
salt + pepper
optional seasonings: Old Bay, celery salt, caraway seeds, nigella seeds, za’atar etc.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy soup pot over medium heat. Add the diced onions to the pot and sauté until soft and translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Add the leeks and continue to sauté until the leeks are soft, about 4 minutes more. Add the minced garlic and thyme to the pot and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the chopped parsnips, celery root, and cauliflower florets to the pot and stir to coat in the oil. Add the grainy mustard, salt + pepper to taste, and Old Bay. Stir to coat all the vegetables in spice. Add the lmeon juice to the pot and stir. Add the vegetable stock to the pot, stir again, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove the lid and lower heat to simmer. Let the chowder cook and bubble until the parsnips and celery root pieces are tender, about 15-18 minutes.

Ladle half of the chowder into an upright blender and carefully purée until smooth. Pour puréed portion of chowder back into the soup pot and bring it back to a boil. Check the chowder for seasoning, adjust and serve hot.

While the chowder is simmering/cooking, make the crispy cabbage. Place the sliced cabbage onto the parchment lined baking sheet. Pour the 2 tsp of olive oil over top, season with salt and pepper and add any spices you like. Toss lightly to combine and spread cabbage out evenly on the baking sheet. Slide the sheet into the oven and roast the cabbage for 13-17 minutes, or until browned on the edges and crispy in parts. You’ll have to flip the cabbage around a few times while it’s roasting. Serve warm cabbage on top of the dreamy winter vegetable chowder.

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Roasted Tomato Soup
Recipe Credit: Sprouted Kitchen

ROASTED TOMATO SOUP // Serve 2 as an entree, 4 as a side

1 1/4 lb. Ripe Tomatoes (about 4 Large Tomatoes)
1/2 Medium Yellow Onion
3 Garlic Cloves
1 Tbsp. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp. Sea Salt
Fresh Ground Pepper
1 Tbsp. Chopped Parsley
1 1/2 Cups Low Sodium Vegetable or Chicken Broth
1 Tbsp. Organic Tomato Paste
1/4 Cup Heavy Cream or Half and Half, optional
Fresh Oregano + Basil for garnish
Fresh Grainy Bread

1. Preheat the oven to 350′. Cut the tomatoes and the half of an onion into wedges. Use your finger to push out some of the seedy parts of the tomatoes, but this is not a huge deal, just get out the big seedy parts, a bit intact is fine. Spread them on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the olive oil and sprinkle the salt, a generous amount of pepper, the chopped parsley and gently toss it with your hands. Tuck the garlic cloves somewhere in a tomato, so they don’t burn. Roast on the middle rack for 30-40 minutes until the tomatoes have broken down and reduced to about half their size. Remove and cool slightly.
2. Warm the broth and stir in the tomato paste to dissolve. Add the all of the ingredients from the roasting pan into the broth and let it gently simmer for 5-10 minutes. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup in the bowl, or with a food processor or blender. The soup should be smooth, with some texture. If you don’t like any texture at all, you could run it through a fine mesh sieve. Return it back to the pot, and add the cream to taste, if using. Taste for salt and pepper.
3. Serve with some toasted bread, or broil a few slices with a piece of mozzarella on top. Garnish with fresh chopped basil and oregano.

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Eggplant Spread
Recipe Credit: Seven Spoons

Canola oil or other neutral oil
1 medium eggplant (aubergine)
1 large onion, cut lengthways then into thin half moons
2 teaspoons ginger, grated (see note)
3 cloves garlic, grated
1 small green chili, sliced finely
1/2 cup cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped
salt to taste

Use a few drops of canola oil to lightly grease the skin of the eggplant. Over the dying coals of a charcoal fire, place the whole eggplant on the grill. Cook, turning occasionally, until the eggplant has shrivelled and blackened. The flesh should yield easily to pressure, and most of its moisture will have cooked away. Do not panic if the skin splits while cooking, this is perfectly fine. Remove from the heat and set the eggplant aside to cool.

In a medium saucepan, heat about 2 tablespoons of oil over medium-low heat. Add the onions, ginger and garlic. Cook, stirring often, for about 10-15 minutes or until the onions are translucent and the garlic is sweet. Add the green chili and cilantro, cooking for 5 minutes more.

Using a spoon or your fingers, peel away the skin from the eggplant. Scoop the flesh into the pan with the aromatics, breaking it up and stirring to combine. Season lightly with salt. Increase the heat to medium and cook the eggplant for 10 more minutes, or until it begins to slightly darken in colour and any residual moisture has dissipated. Check for seasoning and serve.

Makes about 1 cup.

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tempeh, brown rice + millet veggie burger
Recipe Credit: The First Mess

special equipment:
a food processor
serves: 6-8
notes: I leave a lot of room for mods here because I know everyone’s spice/ingredient needs are different. Also, I would highly recommend refrigerating the patties for at least an hour before cooking them to let them set up all proper. I haven’t tried grilling these, but I feel like that would be unsuccessful. Sauté all the way. (If you try baking or grilling or some other method, let me know how it goes)

patty ingredients:
1/2 cup millet
1/2 cup brown basmati rice
1/2 cup nuts + seeds (I used walnuts + sunflower seeds)
1 clove of garlic, peeled
3/4 cup roughly chopped red onion
1/2 cup grated vegetables (I used carrots + golden beets)
3/4 cup roughly chopped tempeh
1.5 tbsp tamari soy sauce
2 tbsp GF flour blend (or wholewheat, spelt etc)
2 tsp organic, non-GMO corn starch OR arrowroot powder
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1.5 tbsp ground spices (I used za’atar, ancho chili powder + Old Bay seasoning)
1/4 cup chopped herbs/greens (I used thyme + arugula)
salt + pepper
1-2 tbsp water

assembly ingredients:
grapeseed/coconut oil for sautéeing
1-2 heads of butter/bibb lettuce, washed and leaves separated
sriracha
sliced ripe mango
red onion slivers
pea shoots/other sprouts
+ anything else you like!

Combine the millet and brown rice with 2 1/2 cups of water in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add a pinch of salt. Bring this mix to a boil and simmer until all of the water is absorbed  about 15 minutes. The grains will still be quite chewy. Scrape the cooked grains into a large bowl and allow them to cool a bit.

In a food processor, combine the nuts/seeds, garlic, chopped onion, grated vegetables and tempeh. Pulse the mixture a few times until a moist + chunky paste forms (doesn’t that sound great?!?). Scrape this mixture into the large bowl with the cooked millet and brown rice.

Add all of the remaining ingredients to the bowl except for the water. Stir everything together until thoroughly combined and the mix resembles a thick paste. It should hold together when you pinch it with your fingers. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water if necessary to bind it at this point and mix one more time.

Form the mixture into 6-8 patties with your hands. Place them on a parchment or foil lined baking sheet, cover them in plastic wrap and place them in the fridge for at least an hour. If you want to freeze these babies, place the covered tray in the freezer for an hour or two to firm the patties up. Then individually wrap them/place all of the patties in a large zippy bag for maximum storage capacity.

To cook: Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Cover the bottom with grapeseed/other neutral oil (like a 1/4-1/3 inch? you could also spray the pan with oil if you have a misto thing). Gently transfer 2-3 patties to the pan and sauté until golden on the bottom, about 3-4 minutes. Flip the patties over and cook until golden on the other side, another 3 minutes. I kind of nudged the patties up against the sides of the pan to brown them all over as well. Repeat with remaining patties, while you keep the cooked ones warm.

Serve the hot veggie patties with lettuce wraps, toppings etc.

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Roasted Beet Soup with Crème Fraiche
Recipe Credit: Epicurious

  • 1/2 pound red beets (about 3 medium)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 leek (white and pale green parts only), chopped
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 celery stalk, chopped
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 1 fresh thyme sprig
  • 1 fresh parsley sprig
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons crème fraîche or sour cream

Preheat oven to 350°F. Wrap beets in foil and roast until tender when pierced with fork, about 1 hour. Cool. Peel beets. Cut 1/4 of 1 beet into 1/4-inch cubes; reserve for garnish. Cut remaining beets into 1/2-inch pieces.

Melt butter with oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add leek, onion, and celery and cook until beginning to brown, stirring frequently, about 13 minutes. Stir in ginger, allspice, white pepper, and 1/2-inch beet pieces. Cook until vegetables begin to stick to bottom of pot, stirring frequently, about 7 minutes. Add 2 cups water, bay leaf, thyme sprig, and parsley sprig. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 25 minutes. Remove bay leaf, thyme sprig, and parsley sprig. Cool soup slightly. Working in batches, puree soup in blender with cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly, cover, and refrigerate.)

Gently rewarm soup (do not boil). Divide between 2 bowls. Garnish each with 1 tablespoon crème fraîche. Sprinkle with reserved beet cubes.

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One-Pot Farro with Tomatoes
Recipe Credit: Smitten Kitchen

2 cups water
1 cup (updated) semi-pearled farro (see Note above for farro types)
1/2 large onion (I usually use a white one, for mildness)
2 cloves garlic
9 ounces grape or cherry tomatoes
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher or coarse sea salt
Up to 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (to taste)
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Few basil leaves, cut into thin ribbons
Grated parmesan cheese, for serving (optional)

Place water and farro in a medium saucepan to presoak (I find just 5 to 10 minutes sufficient) while you prepare the other ingredients. Adding each ingredient to the pot as you finish preparing it, cut onion in half again, and very thinly slice it into quarter-moons. Thinly slice garlic cloves as well. Halve or quarter tomatoes. Add salt, pepper flakes (to taste) and 1 tablespoon olive oil to pan, and set a timer for 30 minutes. Bring uncovered pan (no lid necessary) up to a boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer, stirring occasionally. When the timer rings, the farro should be perfectly cooked (tender but with a meaty chew), seasoned and the cooking water should be almost completely absorbed. If needed, though I’ve never found it necessary, cook it for 5 additional minutes, until farro is more tender.

Transfer to a wide serving bowl. If there’s enough leftover cooking liquid to be bothersome, simply use a slotted spoon to leave the amount you wish to behind. Drizzle farro lightly with additional olive oil, scatter with basil and parmesan. Eat immediately. Repeat tomorrow.

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Citrus Beet Salad with Creamy Avocado Lime Dressing
Recipe Credit: Oh She Glows

For the salad
  • 3 medium/large red beets
  • 3 medium/large golden beets
  • 2 navel oranges (or any variety)
  • 1 grapefruit (Ruby suggested), optional
  • Greens of choice (I used a mix of baby romaine and blanched beet greens)
  • Avocado Lime Dressing
For the dressing
  • 1/2 cup avocado flesh
  • 1/4 cup coconut cream (the cream from the top of the can)
  • 5 tbsp fresh lime juice, or to taste
  • 1 tbsp agave nectar (or other liquid sweetener)
  • 2 tbsp fresh orange juice
  • 1 tsp grapefruit juice (optional)
  • tiny pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425F. Trim both ends of each beet and wash well. Place a few beets on a large piece of tin foil. Drizzle with oil and wrap up. Do the same for the other 3 beets on another sheet of foil. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 45-75 minutes, until a fork pricks through fairly easy. Check beets after 30 mins of roasting, and every 15 minutes thereafter. Cooking time will depend on the size…mine took 60-75 minutes.
  2. With oven mitts on, carefully open the tin foil and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Now peel off the skin and discard. Slice beets into wedges.
  3. While the beets roast, prepare the citrus. De-pith and slice into segments. Set aside. Reserve the scraps of juicy flesh as you can use this to squeeze into your dressing.
  4. Blend the dressing ingredients together in a processor. I used my mini processor and it worked well. Adjust seasonings to taste, adding more sweetener, juice, or salt if desired.
  5. To assemble, add greens (I used a mix of blanched beet greens and baby romaine), followed by the beets and citrus segments, top with nuts, seeds, and/or cooked grains, and finally the dressing.

Weeks 12 and 13: 10 New Recipes, Pinterest Edition!

Happy Labor Day! I hope you all are enjoying the weekend. Thank you for your patience with getting these recipes. Between school starting, sports starting and having family visiting from out of state,  it’s been a busy pace around here! Today, I’m including 10 of my favorite recipes I’ve found or pinned on Pinterest. If you also like to pin, feel free to come say hi!

CSA/Farmer’s Market Skillet
Recipe Credit: Iowa Girl Eats

Ingredients

  • 1-3/4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small zucchini, quartered and sliced (or half a large one)
  • 2 ears sweet corn, kernels cut off the cob (about 1-1/2 cups)
  • 2 green onions
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 vine-ripened tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 cup feta
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped basil
  • For the Honey Lemon Vinaigrette:
    • 1 Tablespoon lemon zest
    • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
    • 1-1/2 Tablespoons honey
    • 1 garlic clove, microplaned or finely minced
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Directions

  1. Bring chicken broth to a boil in a saucepan. Add rinsed quinoa and place a lid on top, turn the heat down to medium-low, then cook until the broth is absorbed and quinoa is tender, about 25 minutes. Fluff the cooked quinoa with a fork and let cool slightly.
  2. Meanwhile, combine all ingredients for the Honey Lemon Vinaigrette in a jar or bowl, then shake or whisk to combine and set aside.
  3. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and saute until golden brown, about 30 seconds. Add zucchini, sweet corn, and green onions, season with salt and pepper, then saute until barely tender, about 4 minutes. Add cooked quinoa and half the Honey Lemon Vinaigrette, then stir and cook for 1 more minute.*
  4. Add remaining vinaigrette, tomatoes, feta cheese, and basil to the skillet. Stir well, taste, and add more salt and pepper if necessary. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.

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Ratatouille’s Ratatouille
Recipe Credit: Smitten Kitchen

1/2 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced
1 cup tomato puree (such as Pomi)
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 small eggplant
1 smallish zucchini
1 smallish yellow squash
1 longish red bell pepper
Few sprigs fresh thyme
Salt and pepper
Few tablespoons soft goat cheese, for serving

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Pour tomato puree into bottom of an oval baking dish, approximately 10 inches across the long way. Drop the sliced garlic cloves and chopped onion into the sauce, stir in one tablespoon of the olive oil and season the sauce generously with salt and pepper.

Trim the ends off the eggplant, zucchini and yellow squash. As carefully as you can, trim the ends off the red pepper and remove the core, leaving the edges intact, like a tube.

On a mandoline, adjustable-blade slicer or with a very sharp knife, cut the eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash and red pepper into very thin slices, approximately 1/16-inch thick.

Atop the tomato sauce, arrange slices of prepared vegetables concentrically from the outer edge to the inside of the baking dish, overlapping so just a smidgen of each flat surface is visible, alternating vegetables. You may have a handful leftover that do not fit.

Drizzle the remaining tablespoon olive oil over the vegetables and season them generously with salt and pepper. Remove the leaves from the thyme sprigs with your fingertips, running them down the stem. Sprinkle the fresh thyme over the dish.

Cover dish with a piece of parchment paper cut to fit inside. (Tricky, I know, but the hardest thing about this.)

Bake for approximately 45 to 55 minutes, until vegetables have released their liquid and are clearly cooked, but with some structure left so they are not totally limp. They should not be brown at the edges, and you should see that the tomato sauce is bubbling up around them.

Serve with a dab of soft goat cheese on top, alone, or with some crusty French bread, atop polenta, couscous, or your choice of grain.

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Risotto Primavera
Recipe Credit: Pioneer Woman

  • 5 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1/2 whole Large Yellow Onion Finely Diced
  • 3 whole Carrots, Peeled And Finely Diced
  • 1/2 cup Cauliflower Pieces
  • 1/2 cup Broccoli Pieces
  • 1 whole Yellow Squash, Finely Diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil (additional)
  • 1 Tablespoon Butter (additional)
  • 1-1/2 cup Arborio Rice
  • 1-1/2 cup Dry White Wine
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt (additional), More To Taste
  • 4 whole Green Onions, Thinly Sliced
  • 1/2 cup Frozen Peas
  • 4 ounces, weight Goat Cheese
  • 1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • Fresh Dill, For Garnish
  • Optional Vegetables To Substitute For Any Of The Above: Mushrooms, Red Bell Pepper, Zucchini, Asparagus Pieces

Pour chicken broth into a small saucepan. Heat to a simmer.

In a large Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter. Add diced onions and diced carrots. Stir and cook for a minute or two. Add cauliflower and cook for a minute. Add broccoli and cook for 30 seconds. Add squash and cook for 30 seconds. Sprinkle in salt and stir. Remove from pan and put on a plate. Set aside.

Add 1 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter to the same pan. Heat over medium-low heat. Add rice and stir, cooking for 1 minute. Add half the wine and 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt. Stir and cook until liquid is absorbed. Over the next 30 to 45 minutes, add 1 cup of simmering broth at a time, stirring and cooking until each addition of broth has absorbed. Add other half of wine and cook until absorbed. Add green onions and peas, stirring to combine. Taste to make sure rice is the right texture; add another helping of broth if rice has too much bite to it. Check salt content and add more salt if necessary.

Once rice is cooked, remove from heat. Stir in goat cheese, Parmesan, and vegetables until all goat cheese is combined.

Serve on a plate with a sprig of dill.

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Kale Market Salad
Recipe Credit: 101 Cookbooks

Green Garlic Dressing:
2 stalks green garlic (or scallions), rinsed and chopped (~1/4 cup)
1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, plus more to taste
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup / 80 ml extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons ripe avocado
1 teaspoon honey, or to taste
fresh pepper to taste

1/2 bunch kale, destemmed, torn into pieces
1 cup / 5.5 oz cooked farro or wheat berries (semi-pearled or whole)
4-5 farmers’ market carrots, very thinly sliced
1 small bulb of fennel, transparently sliced
1 avocado, cut into small cubes
a big handful of almond slices, toasted

Make the dressing by using a hand blender or food processor to puree the green garlic, salt, lemon juice, olive oil, avocado, honey, and pepper until smooth. Taste, and adjust with more salt, or honey, or lemon juice.

Before you’re ready to serve, combine the kale with about half of the dressing in a large bowl use your hands to work the dressing into the kale, softening up the kale a bit in the process. Add the farro, carrots, and fennel, more dressing, and a couple pinches of salt, and toss again. Taste, and add the last of the dressing if needed. This is a salad I like quite heavily dressed. Add the avocados and almonds and give one last gentle toss.

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Golden Beet Salad with Shallots, Parsley and Orange Miso Dressing
Recipe Credit: Oh She Glows

3-4 medium golden beets
10 small shallots
1 cup uncooked rainbow quinoa
1.5 cups vegetable broth
2 small seedless navel oranges, segmented and chopped (see note)
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley
handful finely chopped pistachios, for garnish (optional)

Orange Miso Dressing: (makes: ~1/3 cup)

1/3 cup orange juice
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil (or olive oil)
1-2 tbsp light miso dressing (I used 2 tbsp chickpea miso), to taste
1 medium garlic clove, peeled
1/2 tsp minced fresh ginger
1/2 tsp cane sugar (or maple syrup), or to taste

1. Preheat oven to 375F and line a dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot with a piece of parchment paper.
2. Trim beet greens, leaving 2-3 inches of the stem on the beet (this prevents the beet from drying out while roasting). Note: If you buy loose beets without stems this is fine too. Use what you can find. Reserve beet greens for sautéing, if desired. Wash beets, but do not peel them.
3. Place beets inside the pot. Drizzle on olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roll around the beets to coat.
4. Soak shallots in a bowl of water for a few minutes. This helps to loosen the skin. Slice both ends off the shallots and then peel all the skin off each. Place a piece of tin foil on the counter (about 1 square foot) and place the shallots on top. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Rub the shallots to combine. Gather the tin foil at each side and crinkle it upward to seal the top. Place shallots in the pot along with the beets.
5. Place lid on pot and roast beets and shallots for about 1 hour at 375F.
6. Meanwhile, cook the quinoa. Rinse the quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and place it into a pot along with 1.5 cups of vegetable broth. Bring to a low boil, reduce heat to low-medium, and cover with tight fitting lid. Simmer for 17-20 minutes covered, or until all the water is absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with fork.
7. Prepare the dressing by processing together all the dressing ingredients. I like to use a mini processor for my dressings because the clean-up is minimal. You could also whisk everything together by hand too.
8. After 1 hour, remove pot from the oven to check on things. Remove the shallots and set aside on the counter (keep the tin foil on so they stay warm). Carefully, prick the largest beet with a fork. If it slides easily through, it’s ready. If your fork feels resistance, it needs more time in the oven. I had to cook my beets for about 1 hour and 25 minutes, so don’t be alarmed if it takes you more time.
9. Remove beets from oven, remove lid, and allow beets to cool until they can be handled. Trim both ends of the beet and discard. Run water over beets and peel the skin off with your fingers (the skin should slide off fairly easily) and then slice beets into bite-sized pieces for the salad.
10. To assemble the salad: Toss together the cooked quinoa, chopped parsley, Herbamare or sea salt, and a couple tablespoons of the dressing. Gently fold in the shallots, segmented oranges, and beets. Drizzle on the rest of the dressing, sprinkle on pistachios (optional), and serve immediately.

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Spicy Roasted Vegetable Cheddar Cheese
Recipe Credit: The Comfort of Cooking

1 cup broccoli florets, chopped into small chunks
1/2 red pepper, diced
1 yellow squash, quartered and diced
10 baby carrots, sliced thinly
2 cups whole wheat pasta (elbow macaroni, rotini, penne, etc.)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk
2 cups (8 oz.) sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp. panko breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Set a medium pot of salted water to boil. Prepare a large baking sheet by lining with aluminum foil and coating with a little olive oil or nonstick cooking spray.

Toss broccoli, red pepper, squash and carrots onto the baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, or until vegetables have softened. Remove from oven and set aside.

Once water is boiling, lower heat slightly and add pasta, cooking according to package instructions. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add garlic and cook 30 seconds. Whisk in flour and cook 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk, stirring constantly until mixture is slightly thickened. Remove from heat. Stir in cheddar cheese until well distributed and melted. Add red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper. Add macaroni and vegetables.

Place mixture in a large casserole dish and sprinkle with panko breadcrumbs. Place under the broiler in your oven (500 degrees) for 3-4 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.

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Quinoa and Brown Rice with Vegetables and Tahini
Recipe Credit: Food and Wine

1 cup long-grain brown rice
1 cup red quinoa
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, finely diced
1 carrot, sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick
1/4 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and caps thinly sliced
1 small zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick
Salt
1 head of broccoli—stems peeled and sliced into coins, heads cut into small florets
One 12-ounce bunch kale, large stems discarded
1/4 cup tahini, at room temperature
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons warm water
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 ripe avocado, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 cup mung bean sprouts

  1.  In a medium saucepan, cover the brown rice with 2 inches of water and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat until the rice is just tender, about 40 minutes. Drain and return the rice to the saucepan; keep covered.
  2.  Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the quinoa with 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan and simmer over low heat until the quinoa is tender and all of the water has been absorbed, 20 minutes.
  3.  In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the carrot and cook until starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the shiitake, cover and cook until tender, about 4 minutes. Add the zucchini, season with salt and cook, stirring a few times, until tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
  4.  Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the skillet. Add the broccoli, cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring a few times, until deep green, 5 minutes. Add the kale, cover and cook, stirring a few times, until the broccoli and kale are just tender, 4 minutes. Season with salt. Stir in the other vegetables.
  5.  In a small bowl, whisk the tahini with the lemon juice, garlic, warm water and crushed red pepper. Season with salt.
  6.  Transfer the brown rice and quinoa to bowls. Top with the cooked vegetables, diced avocado and bean sprouts. Serve, passing the tahini sauce at the table.

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Garden Tomato Basil Soup
Recipe Credit: Season with Spice

6 ripe tomatoes – cut into chunks
3 carrots – peeled and sliced into discs
1 green or red bell pepper – cut into chunks
1 yellow onion – cut into chunks
5 cloves of garlic – halved
6-8 fresh basil leaves
2 cups chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
2 tsp of sweet paprika
Dash of chili powder
Dash of dried thyme
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Salt to taste
1/2 cup milk
Dab of butter
Olive oil

Process:
1. Add a few tablespoons of olive oil or coconut oil into a deep frying pan, and heat on high. When hot, toss in the garlic and onion and sauté until lightly browned. Then add in the carrot and sauté until lightly browned.
2. Add in another tablespoon of olive oil, along with the bell pepper and tomatoes. Cook on medium fire until tomatoes are softened. Turn heat off and let cool while completing next step.
3. In a large pot, combine the chicken broth, paprika, smoked serrano, thyme, and black pepper. Heat on low.
4. Add the cooked veggies into a blender, along with the fresh basil leaves. Blend on low speed to desired texture.
5. Add the blended mixture into the large pot, stir well with the broth, and cook on medium fire until soup thickens to desired texture. Then stir in butter and milk, add in more salt if needed, and cook a few more minutes.
6. Serve hot, and garnish with shredded fresh basil leaves and freshly ground black pepper. Enjoy with a side of toast or a grilled cheese sandwich.

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Ginger Beef, Mushroom and Kale Stir-Fry
Recipe Credit: Gimme Some Oven

MARINADE INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/3 cup soy sauce (if making gluten-free, be sure to use GF soy sauce)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth (or chicken/beef broth, or water)
  • 3 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. corn starch
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly-ground black pepper

STIR-FRY INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb. thinly sliced flank steak or sirloin, cut diagonally across the grain into thin strips
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 8 ounces baby portobello or button mushrooms, halved
  • 4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, halved
  • 3 cups chopped kale
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS:

TO MAKE THE MARINADE:

Add all marinade ingredients to a bowl and whisk to combine. Pour marinade into a large bowl or ziplock bag, then add in the steak and gently toss to combine. Cover/seal and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.

TO MAKE THE STIR-FRY:

Once steak has marinated, heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Remove steak from marinade with a slotted spoon, reserving the marinade, and add to saute pan with garlic. Saute for about 2-3 minutes until browned, stirring occasionally. Remove steak with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add mushrooms, kale, and reserved marinade to saute pan, and stir to combine. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until the kale is wilted, the sauce has thickened, and the mushrooms have cooked, stirring regularly so that sauce does not burn. Add in the steak, and toss to combine.

Serve immediately over rice or quinoa, garnished with chopped green onions.

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Sweet and Spicy Poblano-Corn Chowder
Recipe Credit: The Kitchen Beet

The Kitchen Beet - Poblano Corn Chowder

In the Blender:
2 cups fresh corn kernels, cooked for 5 min and cut off the cob
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup heavy cream

In the Soup Pot/Dutch Oven:
2 TBSP coconut oil
1 cup white onion, diced
1 cup sweet red pepper, diced (about 1 pepper)
1 cup poblano pepper, diced (about 2 peppers)
2 tsp garlic, minced
1/2 cup zucchini, diced (about 1 small)
1 tsp salt
2 cups fresh corn kernels, cooked for 5 min and cut off the cob
2 cups vegetable broth
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 cup tomatoes, diced
1 cup pepper jack cheese, shredded

To Garnish:
scallions
avocado
cilantro

As I mentioned above, start by cooking your corn for 5 minutes, then removing from the pot. Set aside until it has cooled enough to handle. While it’s cooling, start chopping! You’ll want to have your onion, red pepper, poblano pepper, garlic and zucchini cut before you warm the coconut oil in the pot.

In your large soup pot or dutch oven, warm 2 TBSP of coconut oil over medium heat until just melted. Add your white onion and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 8 minutes. Next, you’ll add your red pepper, poblano pepper and garlic. Let that saute, again stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add your zucchini and salt and saute for another 2 – 4 minutes. I always sneak pieces of pepper and zucchini around the 2-minute mark to see if it’s tender, or needs another minute. (Note: while the sautéing is happening, this is a good time to cut all the corn off the cob and blend half of it with milk and cream in your blender!)

Add your cooked corn (2 cups) that was NOT blended with the milk+cream, vegetable broth, sugar and cayenne pepper. Bring to a simmer (not a boil, just a gentle roll) and let it all simmer in the pot for 5 minutes, giving an occasional stir. If you haven’t already, take this opportunity to cut your tomatoes into small pieces and shred your pepper jack cheese.

Stir in your pureed corn (the lovely corn-milk-cream mixture). Add the tomatoes and pepper jack cheese, and let it cook for 2 – 3 minutes so the pureed corn can heat up, and the cheese can melt. Serve immediately, and top generously with scallions, avocado and cilantro.

Week Eight: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

This really is my favorite time of year. Nearly every surface of our kitchen is bursting with amazing produce, thanks to Groundswell! I’m so grateful we are able to have such abundance at our finger tips. I’ve been working away in the kitchen, creating many different dishes to use what we have before we get more! This week includes my all-time favorite broccoli salad, a roasted peach salad, roasted eggplant and pepper relish, shrimp and bok choy stir fry and a simple creamy cucumber salad.

Broccoli Slaw
recipe credit: The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

2 heads broccoli, each 3/4 – 1 lb.
1/2 c. thinly slice almonds, toasted
1/3 c. dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
1/2 c. buttermilk, well shaken
1/2 c. mayonnaise
2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
lots of freshly ground black pepper

Trim broccoli and chop into large chunks, then cut each floret chunk into thin slices. Cut the stems into thin matchsticks.  Toss sliced broccoli with almonds and cranberries.

In a small bowl, whisk buttermilk, mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar and salt until smooth. Stir in onion. Pour dressing over broccoli mixture and add black pepper. Stir again, so salad is evenly coated. Serve immediately, or keep in fridge for 2 – 3 days.

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The Kitchen Beet - Peach, Mozzarella, Chive Salad

Roasted Peach, Fresh Mozzarella and Chive Salad
recipe credit: The Kitchen Beet 

Roasted Peach, Fresh Mozzarella and Chive Salad
8 oz spicy greens (arugula, mizuna, whatever you have on hand!)
2 firm but ripe peaches, sliced into bite-sized pieces
1 – 8 oz ball of fresh mozzarella, sliced into medium-thick pieces
handful of fresh chives, chopped
1/4 small red onion, as thin as you can slice it

Dijon-White Wine Vinaigrette
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP white wine vinegar
1 TBSP dijon mustard
1 – 2 tsp. honey, to taste
sea salt and black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 300 F. Slice your peaches, mozzarella and red onion, and chop your chives. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place your peaches on it so they are not touching. Roast for about 8 minutes, or until warm and juicy. In a bowl or on a platter, toss your clean, dry salad greens and arrange the rest of the ingredients on top.

In a small glass bowl with a spout, whisk together dressing ingredients, tasting as you go, so it is to your liking. (Alternatively, you could shake all ingredients in a small mason jar with a lid.)

Drizzle dressing on top of the salad. It won’t need much to highlight the flavors.

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Roasted Eggplant and Pepper Relish
recipe credit: Seven Spoons 

4 red bell peppers, seeded, cored and sliced thinly
1 medium eggplant, cut into 1/4″ batons
1 large onion, halved lengthwise and then sliced very thinly
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons good olive oil, divided
1/4 cup good quality balsamic vinegar, see note
1 tablespoon capers, drained and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons minced fresh basil
sprinkle of dried red pepper flakes (optional)
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C). On a standard rimmed baking sheet or large roasting pan, toss together the peppers and eggplant. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast, for 15 minutes, turning occasionally. Add 3/4 of the onion (reserve the rest) and continue to cook until the vegetables are soft but without much colour, about 25-30 minutes more.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, make the vinaigrette; combine the vinegar, capers, garlic and basil. Slowly whisk in the 1/2 cup of olive oil, until thick and emulsified. Mix in the reserved onion and the red pepper flakes (if using), season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

When finished roasting, tumble the hot vegetables into the vinaigrette, tossing well to combine. Make sure to scrape any caramelized bits off of the pan and any accumulated juices. Allow the vegetables to marinate for 20 minutes at the least, serving the relish warm. My preference is to cool the mixture, then refrigerate in a sealed container overnight. It can then be served at room temperature or warmed gently. You could use to make a great toasted sandwich – perhaps add some cheese, too!

Makes about 2 cups.

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Shrimp and Bok Choy Stir-Fry
recipe credit: Food52

For velveting the shrimp:

  • 1large egg white
  • 1tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2teaspoons rice wine, dry sherry, or rice vinegar
  • 1teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1tablespoon peanut, canola, or vegetable oil
  • Water for poaching
For the stir-fry:

  • 1tablespoon peanut, canola, or vegetable oil
  • 1tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 to 3garlic cloves, minced
  • 1tablespoon chili-garlic sauce, or to taste
  • 4scallions, white and green parts separated and thinly sliced
  • 1pound baby bok choy, washed and thoroughly dried
  • 1/2pound snow peas
  • 2tablespoons rice wine, dry sherry, or rice vinegar
  • 1tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2cup toasted chopped cashews
  • Cooked white or brown rice for serving
  • Toasted sesame seeds for garnish
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine egg white, cornstarch, wine or vinegar, and soy sauce, and whisk until smooth. Add shrimp and toss to coat. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes while you prep the other ingredients. (This step can be done a day ahead.)
  2. While the shrimp marinates, separate the baby bok choy into leaves and, if desired, trim and de-string the snow peas. Set aside.
  3. Bring a pot of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil and reduce the heat to low so that the water is at a bare simmer. Add shrimp and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Drain the shrimp thoroughly, and set aside.
  4. Place a large skillet or wok (not nonstick) over the highest heat the pan can handle. Heat until the pan is very hot: A drop of water flicked on the surface should sizzle and evaporate within a second or two. Swirl 1 tablespoon of oil into the hot pan, then add ginger, garlic, chili-garlic sauce, and the white parts of the scallions, and stir-fry for about 10 seconds.
  5. Add the snow peas and bok choy and stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the bok choy leaves are wilted. Add wine or vinegar and soy sauce and stir-fry for 1 minute more, or until the bok choy stems are starting to get tender. Add shrimp and stir-fry for another minute, or until the shrimp is cooked through, the veggies are tender, and everything is coated with sauce.
  6. Remove from the heat, and mix in the cashews and the green parts of the scallions. Spoon over rice, garnish with sesame seeds, and serve immediately.

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Creamy Cucumber Salad
recipe credit: Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa)

4 cucumbers, thinly sliced (3 to 4 pounds)
2 small red onions, thinly sliced in half rounds
Kosher salt
4 cups (32 ounces) plain whole-milk yogurt
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
1/2 cup minced fresh dill
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Mix the cucumbers, red onions, and 1 1/2 tablespoons of salt in a bowl. Pour them into a colander and suspend it over a bowl. Wrap the bowl and colander with plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator to drain for at least 4 hours or overnight. Discard the liquid that collects in the bowl.

Pour the yogurt into a sieve lined with a paper towel and suspend it over another bowl. Wrap the bowl and sieve in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Discard the liquid that collects in the second bowl.

When the cucumbers are ready, roll them up in paper towels or a kitchen towel and press the towel lightly to remove most of the liquid. Place the cucumbers and yogurt in a large bowl with the sour cream, vinegar, dill, 2 teaspoons salt, and the pepper. Toss well and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and serve chilled.

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Quick and Tasty Fall Dishes

It is harvest time and I am preserving every fresh vegetable I can get my hands on!   In my world, that means canning and freezing.  With a preservation frenzy in full swing, there is not a lot of time for fixing big elaborate dinners in my kitchen.  I am more likely to prepare a few salads/dishes that can be made on the weekend and then quickly pulled out and served during the week.  Here are a few of my favorites.

This Apple Fennel salad is magnificent!  Lots of great flavors and don’t forget the goat cheese at the end!

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Apple and Fennel Salad with Goat Cheese
(serves 4)

Dressing
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup grapeseed oil (olive oil if you prefer)
2 Tablespoons of Balsamic vinegar
1/8 tsp salt

2 fennel bulbs, stems removed and bulbs thinly sliced
2 apples (galas are my favorite for this, but any sweet red apple will do) cored and chopped
1 small jalapeno, seeds removed, chopped fine
1/2 cup chopped dates
3/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts or almonds
3-4 sprigs of mint, rinsed, leaves removed and sliced thin
4 oz of goat cheese, crumbled

  • Whisk all dressing ingredients together and adjust to your taste. Set aside.
  • Place the fennel, apples, jalapeno, dates, nuts and mint in a bowl and toss. Drizzle the dressing on top and toss until well coated.
  • Place in fridge for at least an hour to allow the flavors to blend.
  • Toss salad again before serving and top with crumbled goat cheese. Enjoy!

Who doesn’t enjoy a big ole’ pot of sweet and tangy baked beans on an autumn afternoon? We do! What if you could get a healthy dose of greens in there too? This is our favorite recipe for baked beans with the addition of kale.   The best part is it makes a super easy leftover for a second dinner; just reheat on low in a saucepan (w/lid) with a little water to keep it from sticking to the bottom…dinner is served!

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Kale/Swiss Chard and BBQ Baked Beans
adapted from Great American Recipes
(serves 6)

8 slices of bacon (certainly can be omitted if you are not a meat eater)
2 cups onion, chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 cans (15 oz. each) pinto beans
15-20 leaves of kale/swiss chard, destemmed and chopped fine

Sauce
1 cup water
1/2 cup tomato ketchup
1/2 cup molasses
2 Tbs Dijon mustard
1 tsp powdered ginger
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

  • Place all sauce ingredients into a medium size bowl and whisk till smooth. Set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 and move racks far enough down to accommodate a large baking pot with lid, such as a dutch oven or Le crueset pot.
  • On the stove top, preheat large dutch oven or Le crueset to medium high, lay in bacon strips and cook, turning occasionally, till crisp. Remove and place on paper towel, leaving bacon fat in the pot. Add the onions and garlic, sautéing for a few minutes until onions are translucent.
  • Meanwhile, place the beans in a colander and rinse thoroughly, drain and then add to the onion/garlic mixture. Chop the bacon and also add.  Then add the kale and stir to mix well with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Pour the sauce on top, mix to fully coat and put the lid on the pot. Place in the oven for 30 minutes.
  • Remove the lid and bake an additional 15-20 minutes or until the top begins to look carmelized and darker in color. Don’t let it burn! Remove and serve with tortilla chips for dipping, keeping in mind that it will be screaming hot for another 30 minutes so do be careful!

What to do with all the eggplant, right? Here is a simple and absolutely delicious combination, using eggplant and those beautiful red peppers. If you are really trying to eat seasonally you will notice there are some windows of opportunity for certain combinations of veggies that you simply cannot wait to arrive. We have been enjoying this dish for years and anxiously await the season!

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Roasted Eggplant Spread
adapted from Ina Garten’s Barefoot Contessa’s Cookbook
serves 4, as an appetizer

1 medium eggplant, not peeled (I used 3 of the skinner purple ones last week and it was the perfect amount)
2 small red bell peppers, seeded
1 red onion, peeled
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 Tbs olive oil
1-1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbs tomato paste (open a small can, scoop out the 1 Tbs and put the rest on a wax paper and into the freezer

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  • Cut the eggplant, bell pepper and onion into 1-inch cubes.
    Toss them in a large bowl with the garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread them on a baking sheet. Roast for 45 minutes, until the vegetables are lightly browned and soft, tossing once during cooking. Cool slightly.
  • Place the vegetables in a food processor fitted with a steel blade, add the tomato paste, and pulse 3 or 4 times to blend. It should still be chunky but in small enough pieces to spread on crackers or pita bread.
  • Adjust seasonings (salt and pepper). Serve with your favorite pita chips, tortilla chips, or crackers.

Most nights I give my son a choice between two vegetables, one that I want him to try and one that I know he doesn’t like, (a Mama has to have a few tricks!).  Either way it is beneficial, because he usually ends up liking a new one or at least we get a second shot at a prior rejected veggie. One night, my son declared he would try the cauliflower, chosen over mushrooms, (okay, I was really desperate to get him to try the cauliflower).  But he promised, “Mama, I know I won’t like it.” After eating a second helping, I gently reminded him of the Green Eggs and Ham story (Dr. Suess), with Sam, who swore he wouldn’t like those green eggs and ham….until he finally tried them!

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Roasted Cauliflower with Lemon/ Tahini Sauce
Adapted from Vegetarian Times
(serves 4)

1 large head of cauliflower, cut into 1″ florets
4 tsp of olive oil, divided
2 cloves of garlic, minced (about 2 tsp.)
2 Tbs tahini
1 Tbs lemon juice
5 Tbs of water
1/4 tsp salt
1 Tbs chopped parsley
1 tsp toasted sesame seeds

  • Place oven rack in top position. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  • Toss cauliflower with 2 tsp olive oil, and season with salt. Spread on large cookie sheet, and bake on top rack for 12 to 15 minutes, or until cauliflower is fork-tender and slightly browned.
  • Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 tsp olive oil in small saucepan over medium heat. Saute garlic in oil 1 to 2 minutes, or until fragrant. Stir in tahini, lemon juice, 5 Tbs water and salt. Simmer over low heat 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • Divide cauliflower among plates. Whisk sauce, then spoon over cauliflower. Sprinkle with parsley and sesame seeds. Enjoy!

Funny thing about Swiss Chard/Kale…it looks like a whole big pile of green stuff, until you cook it and it transforms into a tiny little pile of green stuff!  If this recipe looks familiar, that would be because I posted the same combination for pizza in the beginning of the season. I am including it again, but in a sandwich format, because it works so well with the weekly kale/swiss chard pickup and has turned out to be one of our favorites, especially with my 4-year-old!

In order to make 2 sandwiches each for 3 people (6 sandwiches total), you need 20 leaves of greens, so I stock-pile and after two weeks of pickup I am ready to make them. Yes, greens can be left unwashed (for some reason they last longer this way) and wrapped in a ziplock bag, for 2 weeks.

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Swiss Chard, Cheddar and BBQ sauce on Sourdough
(serves 3, two sandwiches each)

– 20 leaves of swiss chard, stems removed, chopped fine
– salt
– 1 Tbs bacon fat or olive oil
– 3/4 cup of BBQ sauce (you can use your favorite, but if you don’t have a favorite you can use mine (listed below this recipe).   I am sure once you try it, you will be hooked.  This is the kind of Q-sauce that makes an old shoe edible!
cheddar cheese, sliced (enough for your preference, I do two slices per sandwich)
– good sourdough bread, thickly sliced and buttered on one side (I use Nantucket Bakery or Wealthy Street Bakery for sourdough, but in a pinch you can get garlic bread loaves at Costco that work pretty good too)

  • Heat a large iron skillet to medium and add the bacon fat or olive oil. Heat to medium, add the finely chopped swiss chard/kale and mix to thoroughly coat with the oil. Cook for about 4 minutes, occasionally stirring so it doesn’t burn or stick to the skillet.
  • Meanwhile, fill a small saucepan with BBQ sauce, and turn on low. 
  • Remove the kale from the skillet and scrape into the saucepan with the BBQ sauce. Stir and heat for a minute, until warm and bubbly, but not boiling. Turn off the burner and move the BBQ/kale mixture to the side.
  • Clean out the same skillet, heat to medium and butter well. Place four slices of bread in the skillet, butter side down.
  • Layer on the cheese and put a lid on the skillet for just a minute or two, until the cheese melts. The lid helps the cheese melt, but you have to make sure your skillet is not up too high which would cause the bottom of the bread to burn.  When the cheese is melted, use a metal spatula to remove each piece of bread to a plate.
  • Place the matching pieces of bread into the skillet, butter side down. Spread a heaping spoonful of the BBQ/Kale mixture on top of each piece of bread.   Place the corresponding cheese/bread slice on top, making it a complete sandwich.
  • This method of constructing the sandwich helps you avoid trying to flip the sandwiches, which is tricky once you add the BBQ/Kale mixture.
  • Allow the underside of the bread to cook till browned, remove and serve. These will be screaming hot, so don’t dive in until they have cooled a few minutes. Enjoy!

BBQ Sauce
3/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
3 Tbs Dijon mustard
1 Tbs minced canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce (you can buy these at Meijer in the International aisle.

  • Whisk all ingredients in a small saucepan on medium heat until bubbly on sides of the saucepan. Remove, cool, store in a mason jar in fridge for up to 3 weeks.

Enjoy the last couple weeks of the summer CSA pickup.  If you wish to continue on with your veggies, don’t forget to sign up for the Winter CSA, which runs from November thru mid December! 
Lisa McLean

Late Summer Bounty

We are getting so many absolutely delicious vegetables right now. Though it is wonderful, it can definitely be quite overwhelming at times. Salad is one of the ideas that comes to mind and there are so many options to consider. Getting my kids to eat salads can be a bit of a bear at times. Here are two salads that I have been successful with and that my husband and I love as does company when they come. My son does prefer that you warm these up a little. I think part of what he doesn’t like about “salad” is the cold factor. Alas if they will eat it, I will warm it up. I have also learned to generally go a little lighter on the vinaigrettes and they tend to not notice that it is a “salad.” The following salad is different than the classic mayonnaise potato salad but a big hit with everyone.

Lemon Basil Potato Salad (Southern Living magazine)
2.5 pounds small potatoes, cut into eighths
Olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
4 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2/3 cup olive oil
1/2 medium purple onion, chopped
10 thick bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
10 ounces spinach, cut into strips

Arrange potatoes evenly on cookie sheet. Toss in olive oil. Bake at 475 degrees for 20-25 minutes until tender and golden.
Whisk together lemon juice, garlic, basil, mustard, salt and pepper. Whisk in olive oil in slow stream. Gently toss potato and onion with 1/2 cup vinaigrette. Arrange spinach in bowls, drizzle with vinaigrette. Top with potato mixture. Sprinkle with bacon.
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This next salad takes advantage of something in abundance right now, not through the CSA but at the Farmers Market…corn. My husband got me a book several years ago with main and side dish salads. The book has been indispensable. For the most part, the recipes call for things I normally have on hand and so far they have all been delicious. This salad is also popular with my children.

Fresh Corn Salad (from Raising the Salad Bar)
Kernels from 6 ears of fresh corn
1 tomato, seeded and diced
1 firm but ripe avocado, diced
2 scallions, thinly sliced or 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
1/4 chopped fresh cilantro

Lime dressing
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon freshly minced garlic
3 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper

In a large serving bowl, remove corn kernels. Combine with the tomato, avocado and scallions. To make the dressing, in a small bowl, whisk together all of the dressing ingredients. Combine the dressing with the salad and gently mix. Garnish with chopped cilantro
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Sometimes I am not out to please the family but simply to enjoy the fresh produce at hand. That would be the case for the recipe. My husband and I end up eating this for dinner probably twice a week when heirloom tomatoes are at their peak. My kids don’t understand why would would dream of eating this but I LOVE it. It is adapted from a recipe I found in Gourmet magazine years ago. When I first made it, I’d never had heirloom tomatoes and didn’t appreciate how wonderful this dish is. Now I love all of the colors and textures combining together. I believe the original recipe called for bleu cheese but I am not a fan so have changed it to what I enjoy and can find at the Holland Farmers market.

Heirloom Tomato Salad with Goat Cheese
8 1/2inch thich slices of good crusty bread
4 large garlic cloves, halved
3 tablespoons plus 1/3 cup olive oil
1 cup currant, grape, cherry or pear tomatoes
1/2 cup chopped green onions
10 medium heirloom tomatoes cored, thinly sliced
1 small onion, sliced paper thin
3 celery stalks, sliced thin on diagonal
1.5 cups crumbled goat cheese
Prepare grill to medium high. Rub bread with garlic and brush with 3 tablespoons olive oil. I have been known to do the previous step in a hot frying pan. Maybe not the same but quick and tasty regardless. Combine remaining 1/3 cup olive oil, currant tomatoes and green onions in medium bowl. Toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Overlap tomato slices in circles on platter, alternating colors. Scatter onion and celery slices over tomatoes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spoon tomato and green onion mixture over top. Sprinkle with cheese. Grill bread or use frying pan, two minutes per side. Pile salad on bread and enjoy the yummy messiness!
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As always when I have ingredients that I don’t know what to do with, I end up trying epicurious.com. They did not let me down with this delicious cabbage soup recipe that is a hit with the entire family. The original recipe has a lemon creme fraiche topping but we do not do the topping. We just stick with the soup itself so if you think the soup would benefit from a lemon creme fraiche topping, just look it up on epicurious.com. At this point in August, I am not in the mood for a heavy thick soup but I freeze this and then can thaw it in January when I am most assuredly in the mood for this soup. Because of this, the soup doesn’t usually have the garnish of sauteed cabbage but we enjoy it nonetheless. Pair it with some nice crusty bread and lunch is served.

Potato, Cabbage, Leek Soup (from Bon Appetit)
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
6 cups diced green cabbage (from about 1/2 of medium head or a whole small head)
3 cups chopped leeks (white and pale green only, 3-4 large)
3 garlic cloves, pressed
3 cups 1/2 inch cubed, peeled potatoes (about 1.25 pounds)
1 2×2 piece Parmesan rind (optional)
1 turkish bay leaf
6 cups (or more) chicken or vegetable broth
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives, for garnish

Melt 1 tablespoon butter with 1 tablespoon olive oil in a heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add cabbage, sprinkle lightly with salt and freshly ground black pepper and saute until cabbage is almost tender but not brown, 6-8 minutes. Using slotted spoon transfer 1 cup cabbage to small bowl and reserve for garnish.
Add 1 tablespoon butter to pot with cabbage, add leeks and garlic. Saute over medium heat until leeks soften slightly, about 3 minutes. Stir in potatoes, Parmesan rind if desired and bay leaf. Add 6 cups broth; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until all vegetables are tender, 20-25 minutes. Discard Parmesan rind, if using, and bay leaf. Let soup cool. If pureeing while still warm, remember to have the center piece out of the top of the blender and hold a kitchen towel over that opening so steam can escape but not the delicious soup. Working in batches, puree soup in blender until smooth. Return puree to pot. Simmer until heated through, adding more broth by 1/4 cupfuls to thin soup to desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper.
Ladle into bowls and garnish with reserved cabbage and chives.
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Though this is definitely a heartier meal, it fits right in with the produce we are receiving right now–zucchini, eggplant, tomatoes, peppers and onions. My kids don not appreciate this wonderful recipe but everyone else I have served it to does.

Ratatouille and Sausage Pot Pit with Cornmeal Biscuits (from the New York Times)
Biscuits
1 cup flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 teaspoons sugar
1.5 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
6 tablespoons butter in 1/2 inch chunks
3/4 cup sour cream or yogurt
milk

Ratatouille
1 large eggplant, cut into 1 inch chunks
3 small zucchini, cut into 1 inch chunks
7 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup chopped parsley or basil
3/4 pound Italian sausage
1 large onion, cut into 1 inch chunks
1 red/yellow/orange or purple sweet pepper, cut into 1 inch chunks
3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1.5 pounds tomatoes
4 sprigs thyme
Biscuits-whisk flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Using fork, cut in butter until resembles coarse crumbs. Fold in sour cream. Knead until comes together in a ball adding drop or two of milk if necessary. Cover with plastic wrap until ready to use.
Ratatouille-Toss eggplant and zucchini with 5 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with 3/4 teaspoons salt and 3/4 teaspoons pepper. Spread veggies on baking sheet. Don’t crowd them. Roast, tossing occasionally until golden, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a deep saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Crumble sausage and cook over medium until done, about 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan. Saute onion, pepper, garlic and 1/4 teaspoon garlic until soft, 5-7 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and thyme. Simmer until tomatoes are cooked and stew-like, about 10 minutes. Stir in sausage, roasted vegetable and parsley. Pour mixture into oven safe dish. Divide dough into 6 balls. Squash into disks (1/2 inch thick). Arrange on top of ratatouille. Brush biscuits with milk. Bake in oven 25-30 minutes.

One more idea for those peppers and eggplants. This is quick, easy and delicious.
Grilled Sweet Peppers and Eggplant
2 sweet peppers, cut into wedges
1 eggplant, 1/2 inch slices
3 tablespoons olive oil plus more for tossing with peppers and eggplant
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped
1/2 cup feta/goat cheese, crumbled
salt and pepper
Preheat grill. Toss peppers and eggplant with olive oil. Grill about 8-10 minutes. Arrange on a platter. Combine 3 tablespoons olive oil, red wine vinegar and oregano. Pour over peppers and eggplant slices. Crumble goat cheese over veggies. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Flavor Intuition

Sometimes it all comes together. Once you start identifying the quirky  flavors of  individual  veggies…. the real fun begins! You can follow your flavor intuition and create a dish like this one made of beets, carrots and kale, with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and blue cheese crumbles. I am totally hooked!

This recipe uses the kale/chard, beets and carrots from pick-up and serves up a lovely balance of textures, and sweet vs. bitter with the balsamic and blue cheese being key, so don’t leave them out!! This dish makes a beautiful presentation and is probably more “adult”  friendly than kid as the mix of veggies may require a more mature palate.  However, you could serve any one of the veggies individually on the side with butter or a sprinkle of cheese to satisfy the kids. 

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Beets, Carrots and Kale with Balsamic and Blue Cheese
(Serves 4 as a side dish)

4 medium size beets, roasted, skins removed
4 medium/large carrots, washed
16 leaves of kale/swiss chard, stems removed and chopped fine
olive oil and/or bacon fat
unsalted butter
sea salt / pepper
balsamic vinegar
blue cheese,  for crumbling on top

    • If you didn’t pre-roast the beets, cut the stems off, wash and wrap in a foil pouch. Roast for 1 hour in a 400 degree oven. Pull out and allow to cool. Set them aside until you have prepped the carrots and kale.
    • Wash, de-stem and chop the Kale/Swiss Chard leaves finely.
    • Wash the carrots and run thru the processor with the grating blade.
    • When the beets are cool enough to handle, using your fingers just push the skins right off. Pop them into your food processor with the grating blade and grate them.
    • Heat an iron skillet and scoop in 1 Tbs of bacon fat or 2 Tbs of olive oil. Allow the oil to get hot enough that it shimmers, add the kale/chard. Let it fry for about fifteen seconds and then move it around a bit to coat it all, sprinkle on sea salt and let it sit for another 3-4 minutes. It should be bright green. Remove to a platter and set it in the middle of the platter, smoothing it out to be in a round circle. 
    • Once all kale is removed from the pan, heat another tablespoon of olive oil and add the carrots. Allow them to fry for a couple of minutes, grind some pepper over top, move then around and allow them to cook for another minute. Taste them to make sure they are tender, but don’t let them get mushy! Remove and pile them on top of the kale, spreading them out to almost but just short of the edge of the kale layer.
    • Once all carrots are removed from the pan, add 2 Tbs of unsalted butter and allow it to bubble up. Once done bubbling, add the grated beets and spread them in a layer in the pan so they fry up nicely. After 2 minutes, stir them around a bit and test for tenderness. By the way, quite possibly the best treat in the summer CSA world (outside of a properly made tomato sandwich) is fried beets!!! Sprinkle on some salt and the beets go right down the hatch! Sweet and salty!
    • Remove the fried beets and pile them on top of the carrots, again spreading to make a layered dish.
    • Drizzle a good balsamic vinegar over top of the whole dish, and sprinkle on crumbled blue cheese, right away so it melts a bit on the beets. 
    • Enjoy !

Tips for beets:

  • Each week, when your bring home your beets, decide if you have a dish in which to use them and if so, immediately wrap them in a foil pouch and roast them for an hour at 400 degrees. Roasting beets brings out their sweet, earthy flavor and you can almost NEVER go wrong with pre-roasted beets in any recipe.  Additionally, roasting them ahead of time cuts down on cooking time significantly when you add them to a dish.
  • Have you ever tried to peel a raw beet?? Almost impossible! So your choices are to eat them with the skin on, or roast them and slip the skin off in mere seconds.
  • If you don’t know what you are going to do with them on any given week, the good news about beets is that they will remain fresh and edible in your crisper for months. Wack off the stems, wrap them first in a piece of paper towel and then placed in a ziplock. Store in your crisper.

This week my flavor intuition also led me to this simple combination of potatoes and fennel, roasted in the oven. You can serve this for breakfast, lunch or dinner and it will be well received. How about adding chopped herbs or other root veggies?   Follow YOUR flavor intuition!

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Roasted Roots (Potatoes & Fennel)
serves 4

5-6 large potatoes (Groundswell’s potatoes are perfect for this dish!)
1 fennel bulb, stems trimmed off, sliced thin
olive oil
salt & pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Wash the potatoes, leave the skins on and chop into small pieces. The smaller the pieces, the faster they will cook, so use your best judgement. Place them on a large cookie sheet and drizzle olive oil on top. Using your clean hands, mix the potatoes around until all are coated. Yes, your hands will be oily, but it is faster to wash your hands then another dish and spoon, right?!
Spread the potatoes evenly on the pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in the oven on the center rack for 20 minutes. When the time is up, the potatoes should be starting to look crisp and sticking to the pan. Use a metal spatula to move them around and add the thinly sliced fennel. Add a little more oil if needed and mix so the fennel is coated. Place back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes, checking to see if they are turning golden brown. When golden brown, pull out and enjoy immediately!

Eggplant is here and it is time for eggplant parmesan!
While I absolutely love eggplant parmesan, every time I make it I vow that I will never make it again, since it takes about a solid 5 hours to make just two pans (one for the night and one for the freezer). If you have ever wondered why your Aunt Tillie’s eggplant parmesan is so heavenly, it is because she is in her kitchen for a day stirring the homemade sauce, cutting, dredging, dipping and frying the eggplant, mixing up the ricotta filling and grating pounds of cheese!! Very labor intensive, super high in fat content and not easy to do with a 4-year-old hanging on your leg screaming “when will it be ready, Mama!”

So this year I decided to construct a dish that would hit the flavor combination, without all of the work and calories. Instead of standing over a pan of frying oil for an hour, I decided to bake the breaded eggplant on cooling racks inserted into cookie sheets, so that both sides would get crunchy. I also decided to skip the ricotta and in exchange for the homemade sauce I used fresh tomato slices. I topped the whole thing with provolone cheese slices, popped it back into the oven to melt and then sprinkled grated parmesan cheese and chopped fresh basil on top. It turned into a super delicious, quick and easy dinner, and oddly enough my son asked for it at breakfast the next morning…yes, we did eat eggplant at 7:00AM! 

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Crunchy Eggplant Topped with Tomato and Provolone
(makes enough for 2-3 people)

1 large purple eggplant, washed (NOT peeled) and sliced lengthwise into 1/4″ thick slices
NOTE: 1 medium to large purple eggplant will serve 2-3 people so plan accordingly (you can use any variety of eggplant, I like the larger dark purple ones for this dish because they translate into larger/fewer slices and that means less dipping/breading time than with a bunch of small eggplants)
2 eggs lightly beaten with 1 Tbs water
1/4 cup flour for dredging
2 cups Panko bread crumbs
1 Tbs dried oregano
1 Tbs dried basil
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

2 medium size tomatoes, thinly sliced
provolone or mozzarella cheese, sliced 
grated parmesan cheese
fresh basil leaves

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Prepare two cookie sheet pans with cooling racks on top (use the racks you have for cooling cookies, they should fit right inside the cookie sheets). This allows both sides to get crunchy in the baking process. Using a paper towel dipped in olive oil rub the racks so they are lightly greased. This will keep the crust from sticking to the rack when it is time to remove the eggplant.

Slice the eggplant lengthwise so you have large 1/4″ thick slices. You should get about 9 slices out of a medium/large eggplant. Place the flour in a shallow bowl and the eggs/water mixture in another shallow bowl, both large enough to lay the eggplant down flat inside. Then place the breadcrumbs, oregano, basil, garlic powder, salt and pepper on a large plate and using a fork mix in the herbs.

Dredge each piece of eggplant in the flour, then the egg, then the breadcrumb mixture, both sides.  Gently arrange them on the prepared racks/cookie sheets. Place them in the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Check to make sure the crust isn’t burning and use a fork to test for tenderness.  They should still have some body to them and not be cooked to mush.  Pull out and place sliced tomatoes on top of each eggplant, topping with slices of cheese and pop them back in the oven for another 2-3 minutes or so, until the cheese is melted. 
Pull them out and plate them; sprinkle some freshly grated parmesan cheese and chopped basil leaves on top (sorry, I took my photo too soon in the process!) and serve immediately!  Did I mention this dish has a fraction of the calories found in traditional eggplant parmesan? (Which simply means we can all eat twice as much!)

For my final two dishes this week, please check back to see my post with recipes for Kholrabi with Blueberries and a Cool Cucumber dish.  Tune in tomorrow!  

Lisa McLean

Confessions of a Veggie Sandwich Lover…

I have a sandwich obsession. I just LOVE any combination of veggies, cheeses and spreads packed onto a great slab of bread, grilled panini style or openface and broiled. I had a sandwich a couple weeks ago that I am still dreaming about. The combination of spicy arugula and cool cucumber with the cheese was heaven! After leaving the restaurant, I immediately wrote down the ingredients and tried to recreate it at the homefront. Here is my best rendition. You don’t need a fancy panini maker, any skillet will do.
This is an opportunity for total creativity, so have some fun and make it your own signature combination!

IMG_5243

Crispellini Panini (have your kids chant that 3 times fast!)
(adapted from a sandwich I had at the Crispelli restaurant in Berkley)

sourdough bread (or any sturdy bread you like), sliced and buttered
goat cheese, and a mozzarella or Gruyere cheese, sliced (you could get by with just one cheese but I really enjoy the complexity created with 2 cheeses)
garlic powder
salt and pepper
Roasted red peppers
cucumber, sliced thin
Arugula, or any other spicy green, rinsed and spun dry

Butter one side of each piece of bread and place them butter side down (I know it seems messy, so do it on a large cutting board). Smear on the goat cheese or crumble on the feta. If you are using goat cheese, liberally sprinkle salt and garlic powder on top. If you are using feta, skip the salt as the feta will be salty enough, but feel free to sprinkle on the garlic powder. Pile on the strips of red pepper, cucumber slices and then pack on top a bunch of arugula.

Now place the sliced mozzarella or Gruyère on top of the lettuce to keep it in place. Heat your skillet to medium heat and run a swab of butter around it to grease the pan. When the butter stops sizzling place your pieces of bread with all the fixins in the skillet, butter side down (sorry, it may seem obvious, but sometimes we all miss the obvious, right?).

If you have a lid that you can put on top it will help melt down the cheese just a bit faster. Once the cheese is looking a bit melted, place the top piece of bread on top, butter side up and flip the whole thing over. You will need a big spatula (a metal one works best for this dish) and you may need to use a finger or two to assist and keep it all together. Cook a minute or two longer on the second side, checking to make sure the bread is not burning. Remove to a platter and cut in half before serving to release a little heat and enjoy the lovely colors of your sandwich!

Another great sandwich combination and one of my favorite dishes to make on a leisure Sunday is a grilled vegetable platter. It is super easy because most of the cooking takes place outside on the grill and the rest of it is simply assembling dressings, cheeses, and condiments on a big platter and then heading to the deck. Additionally, the veggies displayed on a platter make a gorgeous presentation for entertaining. Serving is super easy because everyone makes their own sandwich from the platter, piling on their favorite spreads and enjoying their own favorite veggie combination. Oh, and did I mention how delicious veggies are when grilled? The flavors are intensified, a bit caramelized from the natural sugars, and with a hint of smokiness!!

IMG_5018

Grilled Veggies with Spreads and Artisan Breads
(The funny thing about grilled veggies is that they shrink down so you can eat twice as much! So, gauge the amount of veggies based on each person having 2 sandwiches and at least 6 pieces of veggies per sandwich.)

Ingredients (any combination of the following)
– Olive oil and butter
– Onions, sliced thin (you can caramelize them in the pan as I do below, or use scallions and grill them whole)
– Arugula, or any spicy green, or lettuce if you prefer
– Fresh Herbs: Basil, thyme, oregano
– Zucchini (sliced 1/2″ thick)
– Summer Squash (sliced 1/2″ thick)
– Eggplant, (sliced 1/2″ thick, no need to peel, unless it is super huge and the skin is very tough)
– Peppers, (sliced in half lengthwise, seeds removed)
– Fennel bulbs, (sliced in half lengthwise so that the stem is still holding it together)
– Cheeses: feta, goat cheese, cheddar, Gruyère, mozzarella, parmesan, blue cheese, Manchego; any of these will do!
– Spreads: pesto of any variation, hummus, olive oil, balsamic vinegar
– Bread: any good artisan bread such as focaccia, sourdough, multigrain, thickly sliced. Don’t pick a soft bread that easily falls apart, because you are building a major sandwich!
– Garlic: heads of garlic, fully intact with the paper removed and drizzled with oil, salt and pepper, wrap in foil and place on the grill an hour in advance of the veggies Mushrooms: You can do Portobello caps, placed top side down, drizzled with a bit of olive oil, or pats of butter, and blue cheese or feta chunks placed over the gills, wrapped lightly in tin foil. They take about 20-30 minutes to cook to tender so place them on the grill well in advance of the rest of the veggies.)
– Tomatoes – I like to slice tomatoes for the platter, but only when they are in season and really ripe. I don’t grill them because I find they get too messy and taste just as good fresh.
– Toasted pine nuts
– Olives of any variety

First, bring a skillet to medium heat and pour in 2 Tbs of olive oil, 1 Tbs of butter and allow to melt. Add the onions and stir them around to coat the onions with the oil. Turn the heat down to low and allow the onions to caramelize for at least 10-15 minutes (they will be golden brown). Occasionally stir the pan; if they start to stick to the bottom, add a 1/8 cup of water and stir them around. Make sure the heat is low and they don’t burn.

While the onions are caramelizing, pull out your veggies and wash and slice them lengthwise as noted by each vegetable in the ingredient list. Using a pastry brush, brush each side with olive oil and stack them in a pyrex dish. If you have metal skewers handy, use them because skewering the peppers makes it easy to flip them. Sprinkle them with salt and pepper, as you go.

Head out to the grill. It is really helpful if you have a friend or partner to man the grill while you go back and assemble the platter. If you are on your own, set up the platter first (see further down) and then grill the veggies.
Start your grill with a medium flame (gas) or if using charcoal, get the coals hot and then even them out in one layer so the heat is fully distributed in the grill. Place the veggies on the grill going lengthwise in the opposite direction of the grate so you don’t lose them thru the grate. Grill them for 2 minutes on the first side, with the lid on the grill. Check for grate lines. If none, give them another minute or so and then flip them and grill another 3 minutes on the second side, with the lid on. Check to see if they are tender by poking with a fork.
NOTE: Gas vs. charcoal grills, as well as each veggie, cook differently so err on the side of undercooking rather than overcooking. Veggies always taste better when firm as opposed to mushy!

Pull out a large platter and arrange your greens/lettuce, herbs, cheeses, olives, nuts, and caramelized onions, leaving room for the grilled veggies. You may need two platters if serving more than 4 people. Make sure to include all of your spreads as well, with spoons.
When the veggies are done, pile them back in the same pyrex dish and then transfer them to the serving platter. I find this works best when entertaining so I can take my time artfully placing them on the platter, as opposed to arranging them directly off of the grill.
Serve the veggies, with bread and wine if you like, and enjoy the essence of summer!

I have included a picture of the platter, so you can see the amount of veggies used for a family of three. Sorry, no sandwich pictures available as we went into a feeding frenzy before I remembered to take photos!!

A couple final things to note; last week while reviewing my post dated July 8th, titled “Week 6- Recipe Frenzy”, I realized that I left out two key components for the “Napa Cabbage and Carrot Slaw with Miso Dressing” recipe. I forgot to list the dressing ingredients oil and soy sauce! To those of you who may have muddled thru that recipe trying to figure out how in the world to make it work, please accept my apology. I have since corrected it to read properly. If you are still the owner of some napa cabbage and carrots, please do do give the recipe a try.

Also, this week I had planned on doing some preserving of our CSA veggies by way of making and freezing quiche. As life would have it….life happened….and the prep work for those homemade quiche crusts did not happen! So that project has been bumped out to one of my August posts. Stay tuned.

I hope you enjoy the sandwich suggestions. I am working on some side salads tonight for the week, to be posted tomorrow and of course everyone has a favorite Chocolate Beet Cupcake recipe and I am no exception, so check back this week!

Lisa McLean

Eggplant

The first thing that comes to mind when I think about eggplant is ratatouille! There are hundreds of recipes for ratatouille out there. My personal favorite is  the recipe Summer Garden Ratatoille from Simply in Season. This dish is simple, quick and represents summer vegetable goodness in every bite. Serve it over cheesy grits (I mix pepper cheese with quick cooking grits), polenta, rice, toasted bread, or pasta. I’ve been known to use it as a dip with tortilla chips also.

The next thing that comes to mind is Caponata, a sweet, sour, savory Sicilian dish. There are several variations of this recipe also. My personal favorites include this hearty Capanata Pasta Bake and the appetizer Bruschetta with Caponata.

A favorite weeknight summer meal in our house is Eggplant Parmesan. The recipe calls for panko bread crumbs, which are great, but regular bread crumbs work fine. I like to add some chopped fresh oregano and basil to the bread crumbs also. Use your favorite homemade or store-bought marinara sauce. This is a great recipe for picky-eaters who think they don’t like eggplant : )

Curried Eggplant and Tomato Burgers were a big hit at last years Veggie Burger Cooking Demo. You can roast the eggplant and cherry tomatoes from this recipe and freeze for winter use (simply defrost and add the remaining ingredients).

If you are turned off by the slightly bitter taste of eggplant try slicing, salting, letting the eggplant sit and then blotting off the moisture. Eggplant, Tomato and Mozzarella tart makes use of this method for preparing eggplant. I like adding some fresh chopped herbs to the tart dough.

Grill Eggplant and make a sandwich with your favorite crusty bread.

Grill Eggplant and put it on your pizza.
Make this Grilled Vegetable Lasagna or slice the eggplant thin and use as a replacement for the noodles as in this Eggplant Rolls recipe.

Steam Eggplant

Try Eggplant Chips

Saute Eggplant

Stuff Eggplant

Oven Roast Eggplant

Baingan Bharta, an Indian curry dish made from Eggplant.

Eggplant Fritters

Interested in preserving your eggplant? Try pickled eggplant with garlic and mint.

Check out Groundswell Cooking Eggplant pinboard for more ideas.

Week 16: Summer meets Fall

Thanks to Tom, Katie and the farm crew for all the lovely produce this week! 
 
Homemade Tomato Ketchup
2.5-3 lbs ripe red tomatoes, quartered
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
1 T black peppercorns
1 T mustard seeds
1 T allspice berries
1 tsp whole cloves
2 tsp celery seeds
1 thin slice fresh ginger
cinnamon stick
2 bay leaves
2 tbsp packed dark brown sugar
1/2 tsp sweet paprika
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp coarse salt
Large pinch cayenne
Quarter the tomatoes, place in strainer and allow to drain for a few hours to release excess water.  Place tomatoes, onions, bell pepper and garlic in a large pot.  Bring to boil over high heat.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are very soft about 30 minutes.  Pass through a food mill 2 or 3 times starting with a course blade and working to the finest blade until you have a very smooth puree. Alternatively, puree in a blender until smooth and pass through a fine strainer into a large bowl.  Place peppercorns through bay leaves on a piece of cheesecloth and tie it up to form a bag.  Add to tomato mixture along with brown sugar, paprika, vinegar, salt and cayenne.  Simmer slowly stirring frequently until ketchup is very thick, at least 2 hours.  Remove cheesecloth bag.
 
Fajita Burritos
1 large green bell pepper, sliced
2 large red bell peppers, sliced
1 large onion, sliced
1-2 hot peppers, minced, optinal
fajita seasoning (I use Moctezuma’s, from their food store on lexington ave in GR)
salt and pepper
2 steaks, sliced, optinal
juice of 2-3 limes
8 oz package mushrooms, optinal
Black Beans
Flour Tortillas, the burrito sized
Cooked Rice
Pico de Gallo (see recipe below)
other additional topping suggestions: guacamole, cheese, sour cream, salsa verde (with tomatillos)
In a large frying pan coated with oil, add the peppers and onion. Cook over medium high heat until nearing the desired degree of doneness. Add the limes and fajitas seasoning, stir. Add the steak and mushrooms and more seasoning if desired. Saute until the meat is cooked to the desired degree of doneness. 
Take a warmed flour tortilla and load it up with rice, beans, pepper and steak filling, toppings and roll it up like a Burritos (good luck with not filling it entirely too full!). 
 
Pico de gallo
 
 
 
4 large tomatoes, diced
1 large red onion, diced
2 small hot peppers, diced
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
pinch of salt
juice of one lime
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Boiled Greens over Polenta w/Braised Lamb Shanks
For the lamb shanks:
4 (12-ounce) lamb shanks, trimmed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
4 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup dry red wine
1 quart diced tomatoes
oregano, chopped
1/4 cup chopped parsley (from top of parsley root if you have it)
Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with olive oil. Sprinkle lamb with salt and pepper. Add lamb to pan, and cook on each side or until browned (about 5 minutes per side). Remove from pan. Add garlic to pan; sauté 15 seconds. Add wine; cook 2 minutes, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Stir in tomatoes; cook 2 minutes. Return lamb to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour. Turn lamb over; simmer 1 hour or until meat is done and very tender. Place lamb on a plate; cover loosely with foil. Add butter and sugar as desired and bring sauce to a boil,  cook 10 minutes or until thickened. If you want a smooth sauce, use an immersion blender or pour the sauce into a blender and puree (be careful for the steam and only put small amounts in the blender at a time). Return lamb to pan; cook until lamb is thoroughly heated. Stir in parsley. Serve over polenta with boiled greens.
 
For the polenta: 
While the lamb is simmering, start your polenta. 
5 cups water
1 cup coarse cornmeal
Bring water to a boil and slowly rain in the polenta, whisking constantly. As the sauce starts to thicken, switch to a wooden spoon. Simmer on a very gentle heat for 30 minutes (I turn the burner on low and move the pan to the side of the burner so part of it is off), stir occasionally. Start a double boiler with about 1.5 inches of simmering water. Transfer the polenta to the double boiler, place a piece of parchment paper directly on the surface (to stop the formation of a crust). Leave over simmering water for 45 min-1 hour.
 
For the greens:
I like to use a bunch of mustard greens, thick stems removed and large sliced. you could also sub kale or collard greens.
1/2 cup onions, chopped
1 garlic clove
1/2 tsp mustard seeds, optional
salt and pepper
olive oil
Coat a medium sized sauce pan with olive oil. Add onion and saute for 5 minutes or until cooked. Add garlic and mustard seeds. Saute 2 minutes. Add greens and saute until just beginning to wilt. No add about 1 cup water or until just barely covering the greens. Cover and simmer 30 minutes. Use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove the greens from any remaining liquid.
Sometimes I like to make boiled greens, mix them with a little stone ground mustard and serve them over grilled brats. 

 
Open Range Vegetable Kebabs 
1 eggplant, cut into large cubes
1 large onion, cut into large bite sized pieces
2 bell peppers, cut into large squares
1 cup cherry tomatoes
5 potatoes, cut into chunks
mushrooms, if desired
garlic cloves, if desired
Olive Oil
Salt, Pepper 
Fresh herbs, chopped (any that you want)
Skewers (I recommend metal if you are cooking them outside over a fire. If you are cooking over a grill and using wood skewer, remember to soak them for at least 30 minutes before using)
Par boil the potatoes. Place in boiling water for 5 minutes (so they are not cooked through but begining to soften).
 
 
 
 
 
Start your fire and get it nice and hot. Alternate the ingredients on a skewer. Place skewer over a grill grate placed on the fire pit. Cooke until desired degree of doneness, flipping the skewer a few times during cooking for even heat. 
Serve with homemade ketchup from above. Also good with beef, cubed and marinated in a little red wine and olive oil. I usually place the meat on a separate skewer as the cooking time is different from the vegetables. 
 
 
 
 
 
Bulgar Pilaf with cherry tomatoes and raisins
2 cups beef broth
1 cup bulgar
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup grape tomatoes, quartered
salt, pepper
chopped parsley for garnish
 
 
 
Combine broth, bulgar, raisins, tomatoes in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer 15-20 minutes until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat. Serve warm or cold.
 
 
 
 
Roasted Broccoli with Tahini Sauce
I always have a jar of tahini sauce hanging out in the fridge. This is a great use for it! 
2-3 cups broccoli florets, trimmed and cut
2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
salt, pepper
2 garlic cloves, slivered
2 Tbsp tahini
1 lemon, juice
Preheat oven to 450 degreed.
Toss broccoli w/ 1 tbsp olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread on baking sheet, roast 15-20 minutes until florets start to brown.
Heat remaining tbsp oil in sautee pan over medium heat. Add garlic and sautee 1 minute. Stir in tahini and 1/3 cup water. Simmer 1 minute until starts to thicken. Remove from heat, stir in lemon juice. Toss with hot broccoli.


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Groundswell Community Farm grows over 40 different crops and 200+ varieties, to provide our CSA members and Michigan restaurants with an amazing array of colorful and flavorful veggies.

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Groundswell Community Farm grows over 40 different crops and 200+ varieties, to provide our CSA members and Michigan restaurants with an amazing array of colorful and flavorful veggies.

Copyright © 2018 Groundswell Community Farms. All rights reserved. Site by CurlyHost.