Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Beet City

We have gotten plenty of beets lately, and my food box share friend has graciously given me most of her share as I love beets and she is not so fond of them. I made two dishes, a beet salad and borscht. The borscht was underwhelming, though very crisp and light. I used another minimalist recipe, and perhaps could have used a bit more seasoning. The beet salad was simple, using a homemade salad dressing that is fantastic, and as always, adding a bit of feta makes it over the top. Beet Salad Dressing 1/4 c flax seed oil 2 T red wine vinegar 4 sprigs fresh dill, roughly chopped salt and pepper Mix together and drizzle over top of salad when ready to eat. Our salad was mesclun, beets, and feta with the dressing. Simple, easy, and such a strong flavor. Borscht (as found on http://www.nytimes.com/2003/07/09/dining/the-minimalist-the-best-a-beet-can-hope-for.html?ref=the_minimalist) Time: About 1 hour, plus chilling 2 pounds red beets, peeled 1 large onion, peeled 1 bunch fresh dill, stems removed and tied in a bundle Salt and pepper to taste Lemon juice to taste 4 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and quartered, optional 1 firm medium cucumber or half an English cucumber, peeled if necessary and diced, optional 4 medium red or white new potatoes, boiled until tender and kept hot, optional Sour cream. 1. Grate beets and onion together on a box grater or food processor outfitted with basic blade (pulse carefully) or grating disk. Place mixture in large saucepan with dill-stem bundle and 6 cups of water to cover. 2. Bring to a boil, then adjust heat so liquid simmers steadily but not violently, until beets are tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Add salt and pepper, remove dill stems, and chill. 3. When soup is cold, taste and add lemon juice, salt and pepper as necessary. Chop as much of the dill fronds as you would like for garnishing. Serve borscht in bowls, with garnishes of your choice and the dill. Pass sour cream at table. Yield: 4 servings. Still not sure what to think of the borscht. Very light, and perhaps a great appetizer, and perhaps the cucumbers we got were not a good mix as the skin was a bit bitter compared to the sweet beets.

Zucchini Tart 2

I made another zucchini tart with our multitudes of summer squash and zucchini. I took a hint from Chuck Hughes on the new Cooking Channel, he made a tomato tart that is a family recipe. Using what I had, most importantly the fresh herbs, I kind of made my own version.
Zucchini Tart
8-10 sheets of phyllo dough
4 oz shredded fontina cheese
2 zucchini, thinly sliced
1 summer squash, thinly sliced
1 sprig tarragon, roughly chopped
1 sprig thyme, leaves removed and roughly chopped
salt and pepper to taste
8 leaves basil, thinly sliced
Preheat the oven to 375.
Take a large cookie sheet (I love my large stone) and layer the phyllo dough to cover the entire sheet, including coming up the sides a bit. This really depends on the size and shape of your dough, which I find random at times. In between each layer, spray with a non-stick spray (easy way) or brush with olive oil.
When completed, sprinkle the cheese over the entire pan. Then sprinkle the herbs except for the basil, and add salt and pepper to taste. Layer the zucchini and squash, covering every inch, and overlapping them. This works best in rows, or at least it looks pretty.
Bake at 375 until cheese bubbles on the sides and zucchini is tender. This takes roughly 25 minues. Once out, sprinkle with the basil and additional salt and pepper. Slice. It is tasty cold or hot, it is really the fresh herbs that make this dish!

Another Box, Another Week

So this is last week's box, I haven't even gotten to go pick up my new box from G this week yet. My computer had a nasty trojan virus that my dad thankfully fixed, and I spent a few days with my sister and her gorgeous new twin baby boys. They came home Saturday and I spent a few days making them some freezer pleasers as well as baked oatmeal and cookies. It was funny, I cooked meat for the first time in quite some time, but it all came back to me rather quickly. I love to cook and it was a perfect time for me to use my enjoyment to help others.
So, I will attempt to recap my past week and usage of veggies. I think I used everything but the carrots and fennel again. G's wonferful son even picked me some raspberries! And look at those beautiful beets! Last week we got:
garlic scapes
summer squash
broccoli rabe
I sauted the escarole with some olive oil and garlic, then added some vegan sausage to the mix. Served it was some pasta and a rose sauce (spaghetti sauce with some ricotta cheese, a touch of half n half, and a pinch of parmesan cheese). the rose sauce was tasty, my favorite sauce, and the escarole was different. Skot said it was ok, perhaps better with more sauce, a bit bitter. Everything I looked up had the escarole mostly sauted that way, though perhaps I could have added more garlic. Meh, we'll try something different next time.

Monday, June 21, 2010


So I am new to the blogging world except for a personal one I have been doing periodically but with not too much tech savvy. After a much welcomed and heeded suggestion, I changed up a bit on my blog. A few more things I am looking to do is to make the recipes printable and create a list of them separated by type of meal. Once I figure out how to do this, it is done. And I would also like to change my heading with a better photo. preferably of food. So, I am asking for your help. I think more and more people are reading this which is fantastic. (consider following me so I know I am not writing to the internet only ;) What changes should I consider making and how do I go about doing them? I am not a programmer, but the hubs has some experience, so pointing us in the right direction would be fabulous. Thanks folks!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Spring Tabouleh

Yet another 101 cookbooks recipe. I am a fan of her simple yet fantastic flavors as well as use of fresh ingredients. This recipe was soooo simple, it probably took me about 10 minutes total. And everya lot of it is from the farm! Boo to the frozen asparagus, but I had it and wanted to use it up.
1 c couscous
1/4 c fresh peas
1 bunch asparagus, sliced into 1" portions
1 lemon, juiced
4 T evoo
1 clove garlic, with salt made into a paste (use side of your knife)
salt and pepper to taste
3 T cilantro
3 green onions, thinly sliced
a few garlic chives, thinly sliced
2 hard boiled eggs, diced
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Once it boils, take 1 c out and pour it over the couscous in a bowl.
In the remaining water, dunk the asparagus and peas in for about 30 seconds. Drain and run under cold water to stop the cooking.
For the dressing, squeeze out the juice of a lemon into the EVOO. Add the garlic paste and whisk together. Stir in the herbs and onions, then add the tabouleh, egg, and veggies.
Refrigerate until cold. Super simple, a good side dish or light summer meal. Or, perhaps add some chickpeas to boost the fill factor.

Wild Rice and Poached Eggs

Here is yet another 101 cookbooks recipe for this week. I was in a hurry menu planning so I did not stray very much from her website despite the stack of cookbooks next to me. I am posting a few recipes tonight as I have time, the next few weeks are going to continue to be super busy. This was a simple and tasty recipe, and I used the leftover fried ginger and garlic on top from the fried rice recipe last week. Wild Rice and Poached Eggs 1 c wild rice 1 T evoo 1/2 onion 1 clove garlic 1 bunch collard greens/kale deviened and thinly sliced 1 t red pepper flakes 4 eggs Cook the wild rice in a rice cooker according to directions. Heat a large pot of water to a simmer with 1 T of vinegar. In the meantime, saute the onion in the evoo until a bit translucent. Add the garlic , red pepper, and greens and saute until wilted. Add the rice and stir. This was my first time poaching eggs, the hubs said they could've cook a few seconds longer, but overall not too bad for my first time. I took some lessons gleaned from watching too many cooking shows. Start off by cracking the egg into a small bowl or ramekin. Take a slotted spoon and stir the water to create a small whirlpool. Drop the egg in gently, in the direction of the water. Let cook until the whites are no longer translucent, and a bit more after that if you do not prefer a runny inside. For better ideas, go to this recipe on 101 cookbooks, she has some alternative ideas, though you need a mesh strainer for it. Simple and tasty, a good quick meal as well.

Zucchini White Pizza

Taking a previous recipe that we often make called Rainbow Pizza from Vegetarian Times, I made a pizza using as much zucchini as I could fit. And I still have like 3 1/2 left. Perhaps tomorrow night will be a zucchini tart with phyllo dough and some different flavor accents.
I purchase my pizza dough from Trader Joes, 99 cents per ball of dough. Super easy.
2 pizza dough balls
3 T evoo
1 t garlic powder
2 c fontina cheese (havarti is nice too)
1 1/2 zucchini sliced thinly
1/2 orange pepper, thinly sliced
1 t red chili flakes
1/2 c feta cheese
Preheat the oven to 425.
Roll out the dough to preferred thickness, then brush with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle some garlic powder.
Sprinkle the fontina cheese on top of the dough, then layer the zucchini and peppers on top of that. Sprinkle the red pepper flakes and then feta cheese.
Bake for at least 10 minutes or until crust and cheese starts to brown.
Nice, quick, and tasty. Elvis enjoyed eating dinner outside too.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Zucchini Lasagna Tart

Ok, so this entire week has gone by with no post. Sorry. I have been uber busy and did not meet my quota for blogging. But man, oh man, is this the recipe to wait for! It was soooo good, even if my crust skills are not up to par.
We got a boatload of zucchini's, summer squash, and another one I am not sure the name of. I have made two recipes now with them, and pretty much only used up 2 out of the 5, maybe 2.5. More to come, and that is not even mentioning the other veggies we got this week. We did use some of the greens though, and hopefully I will get around to making a quiche to freeze here soon.
De.lic.ious. That is about all I can say, more words would degrade it. I got the recipe from 101 cookbooks. It was for lasagna tart, from scratch, crust and everything, well, ok, not the sauce. I must confess, I did buy crust just in case, but decided last minute to shoot for the whole shebang. And I am glad I did! The crust was magnificent! I did not do very well rolling them out evenly, and my white whole wheat flour was surely not the same as whole wheat pastry flour, but still a tasty concotion.
I also did not have a large tart pan, but several small ones, so I made 6 individual serving tarts by just making smaller circles in the dough.
Lasagna Tarts
2 medium zucchini, sliced into very very thin coins
scant 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
Tart Crust
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or spelt flour)
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
zest of one lemon
1/4 cup olive oilscant
1/2 cup cold water
1 c spaghetti sauce or marinara sauce 1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
Preheat your oven to 375F degrees, and place a rack in the middle. Oil a 10-inch tart pan and set aside.
Start by tossing the sliced zucchini with the salt in a medium bowl. Transfer the zucchini to a colander and let it drain while you make the tart shell.
To make the tart shell combine the flour, salt, and lemon zest in a large mixing bowl. Drizzle the olive oil over the flour and stir that in as well. Drizzle the cold water over the flour and mix with a fork just until it is absorbed. Knead one or twice - just until the dough comes together into a ball. On a lightly floured surface use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a circle roughly 13-inches across. Ease the pastry into your tart pan and press it into the corners and up the sides without stretching the dough. Trim away any excess dough, and place the pan in the refrigerator for at least thirty minutes. When the dough is done resting, prick the crust with a fork a few times. Now line the pastry with parchment paper and fill the tart with pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes. Carefully remove the paper and pie weights, then toast the tart crust in the oven for another five minutes or so before transferring it to a rack to cool. Leave the oven on, but dial it down to 350F. When you are ready to assemble the tart, use a spatula to spread half of the ricotta cheese across the base of the tart shell. Now spoon about half of the sauce over the ricotta and arrange half of the zucchini in a single layer on top of the sauce (see image). If your zucchini is still quite wet, press it into some paper towels. I use my fingers for this next part. After spooning the remaining ricotta over the zucchini, push it around a bit with your fingers so that it forms a layer. Arrange another layer of zucchini and finish with the remaining sauce. You want the filling to nearly, but not quite fill the pan.
Place the tart on a rimmed baking sheet - in case you end up with an overflow - and bake for roughly 45 minutes or until the tarts are cooked through. Remove and let cool for 10 minutes before serving (for the small tart pans I cooked them for 25 minutes). I dusted the top of this with a bit of Parmesan, awesome!
If you prefer homemade sauce, go to her website, I just did not have all the ingredients, yet. Wait till tomatoes are up!
If you make any recipe on this blog, and like italian, make this one. And the curry. My favorites so far.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

My First Trip to the Farm

I went to the farm for the first time yesterday. Sorry for the lack of photos, but I was in a hurry, had a huge to-do list for the evening, and frankly just forgot my camera in the hubbub. But, the trip was relaxing, I even picked a pint of sugar peas myself along with some herbs. There was SO much food. It was overwhelming, and amazing seeing just how big and ENTIRE share is. We got 11 summer squash. 11! And they were no small potatoes. The beets were phenomenal, bright reds and oranges in a box littered with bright green leaves. And two humongous heads of lettuce. Amazing. It is so great to be able to see mounds and mounds of vegetables, then step outside and see EXACTLY where they came from. They said this week our share was well over $100 worth, and I believe it. It took me two bags overflowing to get it all back to my house to divy up. We got this week: cilantro, dill, thyme, tarragon, oregano, beets, kale/collards, spinach, lettuce, salad mix, garlic/onion chives, green onions, sugar peas, sunflowers, and of course squash I am planning on a few recipes from 101 cookbooks, trying to use up all the squash along with everything else. I am making a lasagna tart (with no noodles), a quiche (using up the rest of the half-n-half from the gratin recipe), beet salad, an asian rice and poached egg salad, and another one I can't remember. At some point I am going to update this website, include sites I get recipes from, and perhaps have a guest blogger, G, my food box partner. Someday I will figure out how to archive my recipes so you can search for them. Someday, perhaps during a break from classes. Any recommendations are super welcome ;)

Lack of Posts

Afternoon everyone! I apologize for the several days worth of no posting, couple of reasons for that. 1. My sister had twin boys early Sunday morning, they were a bit early and unexpected, but doing well. 2. I am in my final 2 weeks of a summer class and a bit overbooked. 3. The recipes I have made have been nothing to write home about, disappointing actually. I made a turnip and potato gratin that we are still trying to finish, it may be sauted with some eggs tomorrow for breakfast. It was ok, a recipe from Foodnetwork.com, a bit bland and soupy. Then, I made another recipe from foodnetwork.com, an EatingWell pasta recipe with kale and pasta, garlic, spinach, and a bit of cheese. Ugh. It was SUPER bland, and I may have sent the hubs with the last of it to work today because I couldn't handle eating one more bite of it. I covered it in pepper for him. Lesson of the weekend: Just because it is from food network, does not mean it is a good recipe. We have been up to our ears in leftovers. I finished the last of the minestrone today for lunch, the pasta is gone, and the potatoes are going to be breakfast. Finally. And just in time for a new box.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Thai Red Curry with Tofu

I love curry. A whole lot. And I love the variety in curry, indian, thai, chinese, etc. Each one is so different, and yet so divine. Yes, I said divine. Sometimes I cheat and buy Trader Joe's bottled versions, the yellow is my favorite, with green following in a close second. I bought a thai basil seedling this year to try as I often come across recipes calling for it, but never find it in the store. It is beautiful, dark green and purple, with lovely buds. It has grown so well in the past few weeks.

This night I decided to use the bok choy, scallions, and cilantro from my farm box. I borrowed this recipe and changed it up a bit from Vegetarian Times. 1 pkg tofu, drained 2 T oil (veggie is nice for its higher temp capability) 1 can light coconut milk 3 cloves garlic, minced 1 T ginger, minced 1 T curry paste (or more if you love spice- I used 1 1/2 T) 2 T brown sugar 1 T low-sodium soy sauce 8 oz baby bella mushrooms 1 can water chestnuts 1/2 head of large bok choy, sliced 1 c peas 1 stalk lemongrass, sliced into 1" pieces 1/2 c sliced thai basil (or sweet basil) 2 tsp lime juice 4 T cilantro 3 green onions, sliced In a wok over high heat, pan fry tofu and oil until tofu is brown on outsides. I throw in 1/2 T of curry paste here to help the tofu flavor along. Once cooked, remove from pan and store in a bowl for later. In wok, add 3-4 T of coconut milk to pan. Add garlic, ginger, and curry paste, stir-fry for 1 minute. Add mushrooms and bok choy, stir-fry for another 2 minutes. Add remaining coconut milk, brown sugar, soy sauce, and lemongrass. Add peas and water chesnuts, lower to medium heat and simmer for 8 minutes. Stir in basil, cilantro, lime juice, and green onions. Serve. This had a great, well-rounded flavor. Please remember not to eat the lemongrass.

Pitch for the farm: The hubs and I could not get over how amazingly sweet the peas were, they brought me back to my grandfathers garden, picking the peas off the vine and eating them right there ;)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Minestrone with Scape Pesto

I have been craving soup for some reason since a few recent trips to Panera on hot days. But, the 90 degree sweltering heat has not exactly been the weather appropriate for soup. But today, it is in the 60's and stormy: GREAT soup weather! My food box other half sent me a recipe for a scape pesto that I altered a bit. Scapes are the tops of the garlic that grow above ground and are snipped to ensure a hearty bulb. Apparently they can be used similar to garlic chives as a topping to many things or in a stir-fry. I used the squash, some carrots still in the fridge, and mushrooms I bought.
Scape Pesto
5 scapes
1/4 c parmesan reggiano cheese
1/4 c oil
handful of pine nuts
Blend in a food processer (don't use the blender- i need to just break down and go buy a food processor now that mine melted).
1 red onion, diced
3 cloves garlic
1 small yellow squash, diced
1 large bunch of cooking greens (collard greens, kale) 2 carrots, diced
8 mushrooms, sliced
1 28 oz can diced, reduced salt tomatoes
1 T oregano 8 basil leaves, sliced
4 c vegetable broth
1-2 c pasta (i used elbow noodles)
salt and pepper to taste
Saute onion in 1 T of olive oil until translucent. Add garlic and saute for one additional minute. Add mushrooms for another 2 minutes, then add carrots. Add tomatoes and broth, bring to a boil. Add greens, then herbs, salt, and pepper. Turn heat down to low.
On the side, bring a pot of water to boil. Salt it and add 1-2 c of pasta. Cook according to directions. I love to get Barilla Plus for it's great protein value and added nutrients. Plus, it uses lentil flour, chickpea flour, and other flours than simply wheat.
Simmer for 20-30 minutes to let the flavors mingle. Taste. Don't get too hung up on the taste here because the pesto is super garlicky and covers that page entirely. But a good flavor is nice.
Spoon out a few ladels of the soup, top with a bit of noodles, and then 1 T or so of pesto. Only use that much pesto if you like garlic, otherwise, use a bit less. Tasty and oh so low in calories!

Mushroom, Spinach, and Cheese Enchiladas

In an effort to be more creative with my menu, as well as make more of my ingredients instead of purchasing them, I found a recipe for making enchilada sauce. I wanted to use the chiles in adobo sauce that I recently found at a new grocery store, so I looked forever and found a recipe that all I needed to do was blend the ingredients, though I altered it a bit. The hubs loved it. It was spicy. If you are not one for spice, I would recommend using less chile than I did, or smothering it with sour cream like I did.

I tried a new cheese, it was sitting right next to the manchego and the price tag screamed to me. It was $2 less per pound than the manchego, said it was a spanish cheese, and was cheaper than the manchego. So, I bought it. I did not read the label, other than the price of course. When home, I read the label: sheep, cow, and goat's milk. Not to mention the animal rennet I just noticed while reading the label to write this post. But, I digress, I am not a fan of goat cheese. When I use up the extra sauce that I put in the freezer, I am definitely going to get the manchego or just use cheddar. The hubs loved it, but then again he likes goat cheese.

Enchilada Sauce (Printable Recipe)

1 can of chopped tomatoes

2 small cans of chopped green chiles

1 pepper from a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce

2 cloves garlic, diced

1 T lime juice

1 T of cilantro leaves

1 jalapeno (seeded and chopped)

1/2 roasted red bell pepper (used a canned piquillo one for sweetness)

1 T sugar

1 T chili powder

1/2 t cumin

1/4 t salt

Blend in a blender until smooth.


12 oz baby bella mushrooms
1/2-1 lb of spinach
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 lb of shredded cheese, iberico or manchego
6 tortillas
Preheat oven to 350.
Saute the onion in a T of olive oil until translucent, add the mushrooms. Saute over medium heat until the liquids are gone. Add the spinach and saute until wilted and liquids have evaporated.
To assemble, line the center of a tortilla with cheese (reserving some for the top), then top with a heaping spoonful of the spinach mixture. Fold both sides in and place, fold side down, in a greased pan.
Top with 1/2 of the enchilada sauce. For the other half, place it in a freezer bag or container to save for future use. Top with a few ounces of remaining cheese.
Bake for 1/2 hour or until bubbly on sides. If desired, turn broiler on for 1 minute, watching closely.
Voila! The hubs absolutely loved it and ate three. Me, the cheese somewhat ruined it, but I enjoyed the sauce flavor immensly, though I only ate one.

Week 3 Menu

This week we got:
yellow squash
snow peas
green onions
bok choy
broccoli raab
It took a bit to plan this, but hopefully we can use everything. I am a bit hesitant with the fennel, though I may throw it in the gratin.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Fried Rice

Another recipe from the Minimalist tonight. When we were in Boston our good friend made this for us for dinner, and it was so tasty and so simple, it was a take home recipe. I apologize for no final photo, we may have been too excited to eat it. But it is pretty, and tasty. 2 c cooked rice (love the rice cooker for this) 8 cloves garlic, finely diced 3 inches ginger, finely diced 4 T veggie or peanut oil
1 large bok choy, sliced (or cabbage) 4 eggs sesame oil soy sauce

In a wok or large pan, pour 3 T of oil and add the ginger and garlic. Fry until browning and crispy. With a slotted spoon, take out the ginger and garlic, laying on a paper towel.

With the remaining oil, add bok choy and saute for 2 minutes. Add cooked rice. Cook until heated through.

While the rice is cooking, cook your eggs. We cook them sunny side up for this dish, but I am sure they would be tasty fried or scrambled as well.

Spoon out a bowlful of rice, top with an egg. Then top with a drizzle of sesame oil and soy sauce. Top with a T or so of the crispy fried ginger and garlic. The hubs likes a touch of garlic chilie sauce on top as well for some heat. Oh so tasty and simple. We may have had it for two meals this weekend.

No recipe tomorrow night, it is dollar dog night at Citizen's Bank Park, and we have tickets, and they have veggie dogs. I have never been one for hot dogs, but man, there is something about a hot dog at a baseball game that makes you feel nostalgic. New box soon.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Greek Pizza

I love Trader Joe's Pizza dough. So much so that I bought it Monday, figuring we would have no trouble using it. And we didn't. But we did have trouble finishing the mixed greens that I intended to use up on this recipe. Never fear though, we got invited to a dinner party and offered to bring a salad! I will be using the leftover bread crumbs from last night's panzanella and reserving some of tonights vegetables for a colorful addition to all that lettuce. On to the Greek Pizza: 2 balls of pizza dough 1 container of hummus 2 c cherry tomatoes, halved 1/2 cucumber, diced 1/2 of red onion, diced 1 T greek oregano (regular will work too) 1/2 block of feta cheese heaping handfuls of lettuce/mixed greens/whatever you fancy Preheat the oven to 425 and bake the pizza dough according to directions, first brushing with olive oil and pricking with a fork. Once cooked and cooled, spread the hummus onto the dough, dividing evenly between the bread. Top with veggie mixture. Top with greens, trickily slice, and enjoy!

Fried Chickpeas and Chorizo with Panzanella Salad

I am a new fan of the Minimalist, a writer for the New York Times. I was introduced to him by my friend in Boston, who by simply watching a less than 5 minute video could get up and just make the recipe. Simple, fresh, and easy to follow. GREAT! Fried Chickpeas and Chorizo 1 can of chickpeas, dried on towels 4-6 oz of chorizo (i used a veg version) olive oil 4 c spinach bread crumbs (i found to be optional) That's it for the ingredients! So, start by rinsing and draining the chickpeas. Make sure they are completely dry as you apparently won't get the crunch if they are even damp (mine were obviously damp- still tasty though). Start with 2-3 T of olive oil in a pan, get it hot, and add the chickpeas. Cook for about 5 minutes or until they start to brown. Add the chorizo and saute 8-10 minutes more. Spoon the mixture out of the pan, leaving the drippings. In using vegan chorizo, there were not really any drippings so I put another 1 T of olive oil into the pan. Add spinach. Stir and let wilt. Mix beans and sausage into spinach. Now, here the recipe tells you to top it with bread crumbs and throw the pan under the broiler for a minute. Two problems here: 1. I do not have a pan suitable for both the stovetop and the oven. Who does really except for perhaps a choice few into cooking? Now to dirty one more pan... 2. Both the hubs and I felt that the bread crumbs did not add anything to the dish except for a few unnecessary, unflavorful carbs. Now, if you wanted to add carbs, might I suggest a great garlic naan or tasty flatbread on the side? Now that is good carbs. I served it with a side of panzanella salad after breaking down and buying a cucumber and some cherry tomatoes. My food box friend graciously gave me the other half of the bread she made into bread crumbs while talking about the panzanella she was making that night for dinner. It was tasty. And I am using the rest of the ingredients tomorrow night for greek pizza. Panzanella Salad 1 cucumber, diced 1 container of cherry tomatoes, halved 1 c bread crumbs 1-2 T capers, roughly chopped 1/2 red onion, diced 3 T red wine vinegar salt and pepper to taste 2 T evoo Mix together the red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Mix veggies and bread crumbs and top with dressing. Tasty. You will probably see this recipe again, fine-tuned, throughout the summer.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Arugula and Spinach Pesto

I forgot to photograph the contents of my box yesterday. It is pretty much the same as last week, except lots more of it. We also got a couple turnips, bok choy, and scapes. Scapes are the tops to the garlic, and when cut off apparently have a great flavor. My food box friend recommended to me a scape pesto after collecting a couple week's worth of them. We shall see what comes of them. I broke down and went grocery shopping Monday night since our fridge was bear after our mini vacation, buying staples that likely would be used. After picking my box up, I sat down and made a list of the vegetables we got as well as grains and protiens in my pantry/fridge. Then, I set to work. Easily enough, I sat down with cookbooks and didn't have to crack them open at all. I planned on making: Greek Pizza (already bought the dough- perhaps bought tomatoes and a cucumber for this) Fried Chickpeas and Chorizo (using spinach- we got an entire pound!) Hearty Salad Potato and Turnip Gratin Fried Quinoa (using the bok choy and scallions) Arugula and Spinach Pesto (recipe to follow) We shall see how this goes! I free-styled the pesto, trying my best to write down and measure what I was doing. Question: Are you looking for exact recipes to follow or more of just recipes for ideas? Perhaps my first question should be, are people even reading this? But, I am more of a "guidelines" kind of cook than a recipe (hence my frequent baking disasters). So I would like to know what people are looking for, what they like in a recipe. Much appreciated. Arugula and Spinach Pesto roughly 4 c arugula roughly 1 c spinach 1/2 c parmesan cheese 5-7 T evoo (depending on consistency you prefer) 1/4 c pine nuts (walnuts would do well here i think as well) 3 cloves roasted garlic salt and pepper to taste pasta (1/2 to 1 pound) The rule I deem most important that I gleaned from watching Top Chef: always taste your food while you are cooking. If you don't, you may just serve dog food. Put a pot of salted water on to boil. Cook pasta according to directions. In a food processor or blender, place ingredients except for 1/2 of the arugula. I used a blender as my food processor melted in the dish washer but I am sure a food processor would do much better for this as there is not much liquid. As the mixture blends down, add additional arugula and any additional oil. It is best to stream in the oil as you blend if you can. Puree until creamy. Taste. Add salt if needed. Add pesto to the pasta when pasta is cooked and drained. I sauted up some vegan italian sausage as well to add as I have been hankering it ever since the Phillies game and people were downing sausages. Voila! Dinner in about 15 minutes. And a great way to use up a boat load of spinach/arugula. See tomorrow for the rest of the spinach being used!