In Season: Roasted Sweet Potato & Sauteed Greens Poke Bowl

I started making poke (pronounced po-kay) bowls a lot this summer. Once the rice is cooked, the rest is pretty easy. And, you can play around with various toppings, depending on what you have. Traditionally, I think of a poke bowl with raw ahi tuna, but I don’t limit myself. I’ve used roasted salmon in place of the ahi tuna and, most recently, played around with sweet potatoes.

I will be the first to admit, sweet potatoes are difficult for me. Where many of my friends and family love the sweetness of them, I never really fell in love. Ok, fine. Until this summer, I would have shrugged and said I didn’t like them. But, I decided to see what they would be like baked and then added to this bowl. Game changer.

Matt was wary about adding greens to the poke bowl, but we both loved how this turned out. It’s a very filling, lovely vegetarian dish. And, leftovers are amazing for lunch. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 4 servings sushi rice, made using package instructions
  • 1 sweet potato, baked (foil-wrapped, 350 degree oven until tender), cooled, chopped into chunks
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1-2 cucumbers, sliced
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 2-4 scallions, chopped
  • chopped herbs – we used basil and cilantro
  • Sesame oil for sauteing greens
  • 6-8 cups greens – we used beet greens, kale, and Swiss chard
  • Sauce:
    • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
    • 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
    • 1/4 cup Hoisin sauce
    • 1/4 cup mirin
    • 2 Tbsp rice vinegar
    • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
    • 1 Tbsp honey
    • 1/4 cup Sambal Oelek
    • 2 grated garlic cloves
    • 1-2 inches grated fresh ginger
    • 1 Tbsp corn starch stirred into 1/2 cup water
  • Sesame seeds

Directions:

  1. Stir all sauce ingredients, except corn starch water, together in a small saucepan. Heat to boiling and add half the corn starch water. Bring back to a boil. If you like the consistency, remove from heat. If you want a thicker sauce, add more corn starch water and return to boil. Set aside.
  2. Swirl 1-2 Tbsp sesame oil in a large saute pan. Add enough greens to fill the pan. Stir and then cover to steam/wilt. This will take 1-2 minutes. Stir in 1 or so Tbsp sauce and some sesame seeds. Remove greens from pan and repeat until all greens are sauteed.
  3. To assemble, spoon rice into bowl. Top with sweet potato, greens, cucumber, avocado, carrot, scallion, herbs, sauce, and sesame seeds. Dig in!
Posted in Cucumbers, Food/Recipes, Kale, Sweet Potatoes, Swiss Chard | 1 Comment

Savor Your Scraps – Radish Salad

Below is my Savor your Scraps presentation from East Pierre Landscaping’s Earth Day celebration.

Homemade stock is your “go to” for scraps. I have a gallon bag in my freezer at all times. As I use vegetables, I toss the scraps into the bag. When it’s full, I make vegetable stock. My bag may include any of the following:

  • Carrot ends and peels
  • Celery leaves and ends
  • Garlic ends
  • Mushroom trimmings
  • Parsley stems
  • Leek trimmings
  • Onion skins and trimmings
    • I usually don’t use red onions because it affects the color of the stock. The flavor is fine, but the color will be a little red.

How I make vegetable stock…

Remove bag of scraps from the freezer. Heat a large stock pot over medium heat. Once hot, drizzle with a couple tablespoons olive oil and add the bag of scraps. I like to let them brown a little, which helps develop the color of your stock. Once to a nice golden brown you like, fill the pot with water leaving 2 inches at the top. Add a bay leaf & large spoon of yellow miso, if you’d like. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes, cool, and strain. Package the stock in 1 or 2 cup portions in the freezer. I don’t add salt, but you can. Just be sure not to over salt the stock.

Greens, all kinds of greens are your best friend in the summer! Sauté a variety of greens in olive oil with a little garlic. Finish with a drizzle of aged balsamic vinegar or a squeeze of lemon and fresh shaved Parmesan. Toss greens into a lettuce salad for a nice flavor addition and crunch. Stir greens into summer soups. Add them to your weekly summer stir fry!

  • Beet greens
  • Broccoli greens
  • Cauliflower leaves
  • Celery leaves: Bright and flavorful addition to salads!
  • Fennel fronds: Add a unique flavor to salads!
  • Kohlrabi leaves
  • Radish greens
  • Turnip greens

Radish, Apple, & Blue Cheese Salad

  • 1 bunch radish (thinly sliced) greens (chiffonade)
  • ½-1 apple (thinly sliced)
  • Blue cheese (crumbled)
  • Honey

Directions:
1) Layer radish slices on a platter.
2) Top with crumbled blue cheese.
3) Spread apple slices on top.
4) Sprinkle with honey & finish with greens. 

Make pesto! It’s amazing all of the scraps you can turn into scrumptious pesto.

  • Beet greens
  • Carrot tops
  • Fennel fronds
  • Radish greens
  • Turnip greens

Carrot Top Pesto

  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 1 cup packed, chopped carrot tops
  • ½ cup packed, chopped cilantro, parsley, or basil
  • ½ cup toasted walnuts, almonds, or pistachios
  • ¼ lime, juiced
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 4 oz feta, Parmesan, or goat cheese
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Pulse garlic clove, carrot tops, cilantro, walnuts, & lime juice in food processor until well mixed.
  2. Turn on high and drizzle in olive oil until combined.
  3. Add feta & process until smooth.
  4. Salt & pepper to taste.

Carrot Top Tyrosalata

  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 cup packed, finely chopped carrot tops
  • 1 bunch scallion, finely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 oz feta
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Pulse garlic cloves in food processor.
  2. Add carrot tops, white & light green parts of scallion, salt, & pepper. Process until well combined.
  3. With food processor on high, slowly pour in olive oil and lemon juice.
  4. Once incorporated, add feta.
  5. Stir in dark green scallion pieces.

Serve either of these tossed with pasta, spread on crusty bread, alongside roast chicken, pork, steak, & salmon, dollop on roasted carrots and other roasted vegetables, or slather on a burger with tomato & mozzarella.

Apple Peels can be dried and added to tea (sun tea/hot tea) while brewing. Make your own pectin. 

Cauliflower & Cabbage Cores are surprisingly tasty. Slice and add them to a stir fry.

Citrus Peels can be dried. Add to tea (sun tea/hot tea) while brewing. Add to the pan when frying meat. 

Corn Cob Stock is wonderful! Anytime we are freezing corn for winter consumption, we always set back some corn cobs to make stock. You can make it super simple or jazz it up with a few herbs. The easiest way is simply corn cobs and water. Feel free to add a bay leaf, some fresh thyme, and/or parsley stems. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer for 1 – 1 ½ hrs. Strain, cool, and use/freeze. 

Kale, Swiss Chard, & Collard Stems are delicious!!

Potato Peelings, simply toss with a little oil and bake in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 minutes. 

Roast Pumpkin/Winter Squash Seeds for yummy snacks! If you don’t want to roast them right away, simply toss them in a freezer bag and roast them later. Be sure to leave some of the “gunk”. It is super tasty when roasted, crunchy, and salty.

Posted in Carrot Tops, Radish | Leave a comment

In Season: Zucchini Meatballs

A couple weeks ago a friend gave me a recipe for zucchini meatballs. After some tweaking, I’ve come up with something Matt loved so much that he ate 20 golf-ball sized meatballs in one day. No joke. When Matt, the chef, thinks something is that good…I go for it! This weekend, I’m making a double batch and hopeful to freeze some for winter.

You can play around with this a bit. If you don’t have a sweet potato, add a couple carrots instead. In place of the beef or turkey, use pork or chicken. I may even use lamb sometime and add some garam masala and curry.

We shaped these like large meatballs, but you could definitely make them smaller or even make sliders or burgers out of them. After cooked, they will freeze like charm. Plus, added bonus…there are more vegetables than meat in this recipe and you would never know it!

Zucchini Meatballs
* makes 26-30 golf ball size meatballs

Ingredients:

  • olive oil
  • Kosher salt & pepper
  • 2lb zucchini and/or summer squash
  • 1 sweet potato or 2 carrots
  • 1 large or 2 medium yellow onions
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 6 sprigs each thyme & oregano, stems removed
  • 4 sprigs parsley, large stems removed
  • 12oz jar roasted red peppers, drained
  • 2lb ground meat, I used 1lb beef and 1lb turkey
  • 8oz Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs

Directions:

  1. Heat a large sauce pan or stock pot over medium heat.
  2. Using the fine grater on your food processor, grate the zucchini, sweet potato, onions, and garlic.
  3. Add a glug of olive oil to the pan and swirl to coat. Add grated items to pan and allow to cook, stirring often until cooked, about 8-10 minutes. Season with salt & pepper.
  4. While those are cooking, switch to the blade of your food processor and pulse the parsley and roasted red peppers until very finely chopped. Set aside.
  5. About 1 minute before removing zucchini mixture from heat, stir in thyme & oregano.
  6. Pour zucchini mixture into a large bowl and allow to cool for about 5-10 minutes.
  7. Once cooled, stir in roasted red pepper mixture, ground meat, Panko, and eggs. Mix together.
  8. Heat a small pan, add a little olive oil, and cook a small portion of the mixture to make sure seasoning is on point. Adjust if needed.
  9. Form the mixture into whatever sizes you like…large meatballs, small meatballs, sliders, etc. Cook these as you need them over the next couple days or cook them all and freeze some for later. We pan fried ours and then tossed them in roasted tomato sauce for the most delightful meatball subs you’ve ever had! (Updated note…we have found that for reheating from frozen…thaw overnight in fridge, place on a sheet pan in a 375 degree oven, and heat to desired doneness. We have enjoyed brushing two or three times during heating with a glaze of some sort…whether a ketchup based sauce, Korean BBQ, etc.)
Posted in Food/Recipes, Parsley, Summer Squash, Zucchini | 4 Comments

In Season: Zucchini Garbanzo Saute

Some of our CSA members have been asking for additional uses for zucchini. What I love about zucchini and summer squash is that they take on whatever flavors you put with them. This particular dish was my brunch today. When Matt got home from scooping tons of rabbit manure to fertilize the garden (BTW, a whole other story…ask Matt about it!), he was cold and wet. After shoving his clothes in the washing machine and taking a hot shower, he dove into this (I made him a new batch) and devoured it. It comes together in just under 30 minutes and will keep you full for a good part of the day.

Zucchini Garbanzo Saute
* serves 2

Ingredients:

  • olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, smashed and minced
  • 1/2 lb zucchini and/or summer squash, sliced into coins about 1/4 inch thick
  • Kosher salt & pepper
  • 5-7 roasted tomato halves (skins removed) and 1 clove garlic (if available)
  • 1 Tbsp adobo from a can of Chipotle in adobo
  • 2 leaves kale, stems removed, leaves torn
  • 1-2 cups garbanzo beans, really…however much you’d like
  • pita

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Wrap pita in foil and set aside.
  2. Heat a large saute pan over medium heat. When the pan is hot, add about 1 Tbsp olive oil. Swirl to coat and add onion. Season with salt & peper. Cook for about a minute and then add garlic. Saute until mixture starts to brown. Remove from pan.
  3. Put pita in the oven.
  4. Add another Tbsp olive oil and swirl to coat. Add zucchini/summer squash coins in a single layer. Season with salt & pepper. Cook until browned and then flip over until other side is browned. (see picture below as a guide)
  5. Once nicely browned, stir onions/garlic mixture back in along with roasted tomatoes and adobo sauce. If you don’t have or don’t like adobo, just add a couple more roasted tomato halves…but trust me, the adobo is delicious!
  6. Stir in kale. About 30 seconds later, stir in garbanzo beans. Heat everything through. Taste the mixture to see if you want more salt & pepper.
  7. Remove pita from oven, cut into quarters and serve.

Image on the left is just after I placed coins in the pan. Image on the right is what you want the browned coins to look like.

Posted in Kale, Summer Squash, Zucchini | 2 Comments

In Season: How To Make Roasted Tomato Sauce

So many of you have asked about my roasted tomato sauce, so here is the recipe. It’s super easy and uber tasty.

Roasted Tomatoes

Ingredients:

  • Tomatoes, halved or quartered depending on size
  • Fresh herbs, whatever you have on hand: basil, thyme, oregano
  • 3 cloves garlic, skin on
  • Kosher salt & pepper
  • Sugar
  • Olive oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Arrange tomatoes on a foil lined sheet pan.
  3. Place the herbs on the sheet pan. You can use one or all kinds. If you don’t have any herbs, that’s ok too.
  4. Add garlic cloves to pan.
  5. Drizzle generously with olive oil.
  6. Season with salt & pepper. Sprinkle with sugar…this is literally just a pinch sprinkled across the entire tray.
  7. Roast for 45 minutes and then check. You may need to roast longer. Juices should have released from the tomatoes and they should be very tender to your touch and starting to brown on the edges.
  8. If I want to preserve them for a later use, I do one of two things. I’ll simply remove the skins, toss them in a freezer bag, and throw them in the freezer. Or, I run them through a food mill, resulting in the most scrumptious roasted tomato sauce you’ve ever tasted. Ladle into sterilized jars and process in a hot water bath for 35 minutes.
Posted in Tomatoes | 3 Comments

In Season: What we’re doing with Zucchini Blossoms

When I talked about Savoring your Scraps, I referred to it as the vegetable version of nose to tail cooking. This is another excellent example. Zucchini blossoms tend to be overlooked and discarded. However, fresh blossoms are delicious and should be savored. You can simply toss them into a salad, include them with sauteed zucchini into a pasta, and even put them on pizza! We had them last night for dinner tempura style, stuffed with a ricotta cheese mixture and served alongside a simple salad.

The breading in this recipe is light and crunchy, which nicely counters the creamy and rich filling. We served them sans sauce, but you could definitely have marinara or another dipping sauce with them.

Also, feel free to play with this recipe. You could sub some cream cheese, use Parmesan in place of Romano, or swap the parsley for another herb. Surprisingly, this recipe comes together quite quickly and can easily work for a weeknight dinner. To make ahead, you could stuff the blossoms a few hours in advance. But, once you start messing with the blossoms, they will not last long.

Ricotta Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 cups canola or vegetable oil
  • 4 oz fresh zucchini blossoms, unwashed
  • 7 oz ricotta
  • 2 oz goat cheese
  • 1 oz grated Romano chees
  • 1 Tbsp chopped parsely
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 c flour
  • 1 c soda water or unflavored sparkling water

Directions:

  1. Start heating the canola oil in a dutch oven over medium high heat to about 350 degrees. It is ready when a small piece of bread sizzles and browns in the oil.
  2. Mix the ricotta, goat cheese, Romano, parsley, and olive oil in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon into a plastic bag or piping bag. If using a plastic bag, cut a small piece off the bottom corner to squeeze the cheese mixture into the blossoms.
  3. Carefully open each blossom just a little bit and check for any bugs using the blossom as a hotel. If there are any, you should be able to simply shake them out.
  4. Pipe a little bit of cheese into each blossom. Leave enough room to twist the top of the blossom closed to hold the cheese mixture in when frying.
  5. Whisk together flour and soda water.
  6. Once oil is ready, dip one blossom into batter to completely coat. Gently shake off any excess batter. Lower blossom into oil and let it fry until just starting to turn golden. Remove from heat, sprinkle with salt, let cool slightly, and taste. This will let you know whether you need to heat the oil a little further or cool it down slightly before frying the remaining blossoms.

Posted in Food/Recipes, Zucchini Blossoms | 1 Comment

In Season: What we’re doing with Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi literally translates to cabbage and turnip. I think it has crunch similar to cucumber and tastes a bit like broccoli stem. Either way, we love it and customers are starting to catch on as well…although many of you have been enjoying kohlrabi for years and keeping the secret to yourself.

We generally just peel, slice, and eat these bad boys. But, you can definitely use them in stir fry (use the leaves as well!), steam them, or even make chips out of them.

Today for lunch, I made a Mexican inspired kohlrabi slaw and served it as a salad with my boring cheese quesadilla. It was so delicious. I really think this slaw would shine with shrimp or grilled chicken tacos. I love it so much!

Mexican Kohlrabi Slaw
* serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 large kohlrabi, peeled and cut into matchsticks (reserve leaves for another use)
  • 1 small red onion, very thinly sliced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Feta or goat cheese to sprinkle on top

Directions:

  1. Toss kohlrabi, red onion, jalapeno, and cilantro into a bowl.
  2. Add lime juice, salt, and pepper. Toss to combine. Let sit for about 10 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle with goat cheese or feta and enjoy!
Posted in Food/Recipes, Kohlrabi | 3 Comments