Sunday, July 20, 2014

Kohlrabi…it's what's for breakfast!

Last week, we received a humungous kohlrabi in our CSA share. I mean as-big-as-my-face huge. I used half of it to make the Kohlrabi Beet Slaw from last weekend's post.  But I still had a huge amount of it to use.

I poked around on the internet and found a few recipes for salads that included fruit. I, of course, didn't have all of the ingredients for any of them. But I did have a mango. So, here you have it:

Kohlrabi Mango Breakfast Salad

@2 cups of kohlrabi, cubed
1 mango, peeled and cubed
2 cups, blueberries
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon balsamic vinegar
lemon juice to taste
smidge of salt
Fresh mint leaves


  • Mix the olive oil, lemon balsamic and lemon juice. Add chopped mint leaves and smidge of salt and set aside. 
  • Mix kohlrabi and mango. 
  • Add oil and lemon marinade
  • Mix thoroughly. 
  • Chill.
  • When serving, add fresh blueberries, and additional fresh mint.


This was a refreshing, different, breakfast salad. Keeps for up to 1 week in fridge.

A Happy Dump-and-Throw Accident: Spicy Carrot & Sweet Potato Soup

This is truly a happy dump and throw accident. I had these sweet potatoes, you see. And a handful of CSA carrots, a few baby red potatoes (too few for a serving) and some ginger root that needed to be used up. Hmm.

What I didn't have was any vegetable soup stock. But I did have some frozen butternut squash soup from last season. So…here we go…

Spicy Carrot & Sweet Potato Soup

2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
5 large carrots, peeled and chopped
5 baby red potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 red onion, chopped
ginger root, about two thumbs worth, pealed and chopped
1/2 stick butter
2-4 cups vegetable stock
Spices…all to taste:
Ground cardamom
Cayenne powder
Turmeric
Cinnamon
Ground black pepper
Sea salt


  • Melt the butter in a sauce pan and add the onions.
  • Saute until onions soften
  • Add spices…start with small amounts and add more 
  • Saute in the butter…they will start to be very aromatic
  • Add vegetable stock, or in my case. butternut squash soup and stir until onion and spice mixture is mixed thoroughly into the stock.
  • Raise heat until liquid begins to boil
  • Add chopped vegetables and cook for 5-7 minutes in the boiling stock
  • Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until vegetables are cooked all the way through. 


Now, here is where I made a happy mistake. I didn't taste. I got out the immersion blender, blended the cooked vegetables until the mixture was nice and creamy and removed it from the heat.

THEN I tasted. And practically choked because, clearly, I was pretty heavy handed with the cayenne. Like, wow.

So, back to the pantry cupboard where I fortunately found the secret mystery ingredient…a can of coconut milk. THANK GOODNESS.

I added the full can to the soup, and creamed it with the immersion blender again.

THIS, ladies and gentleman, is an excellent soup. Still spicy, but now tempered with the creaminess of the coconut milk and the inherent sweetness of the sweet potato, carrot and butternut squash.

Which all goes to show you…measuring is highly overrated.

Bon app├ętit.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Hello, Kohlrabi!

Oh haaaaaaiiii there. Yes, I know. It's been a while. Nearly a year, in fact. I've been around the world again for work (Santiago-related post to come) and we've mostly been repeating prior recipes and enjoying what's in the freezer from last season's cooking marathons.

This week's CSA haul included the largest kohlrabi I've ever met. For those who are unfamiliar with kohlrabi, you can read about it here. About the size of three tennis balls and weighing in at nearly 2 pounds, this was huge.  Usually, I prepare it by fry-cutting it, tossing with olive oil, sea salt and cayenne and roasting it in the oven.

Today however, is a different story. I'm just back from two and a half weeks in southern Poland - another work trip. Long hours, late nights, little choice of what to eat or when to eat it. I did, however, experience lots of types of slaws. Cabbage, carrot, more cabbage, beet…the Poles have mastered the art of the slaw.

And so, inspired by the lunch ladies at the company canteen at our office in Southern Poland, I bring you:

Kohlrabi-Beet-Carrot Slaw

1/2 pound kohlrabi, shredded using the large hole side of the grater
3 large carrots, scraped then shredded
1 large beet, peeled then shredded
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon balsamic vinegar
sea salt
black pepper

Whisk together the olive oil, lemon balsamic (you could substitute with lemon juice, if you have no lemon balsamic), sea salt and black pepper. Set aside.

Shred the kohlrabi, carrots and beets using the large hole side of the grater. Toss together in a bowl. Add the oil & vinegar mixture. Mix thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate until ready to eat.

Serve as a side dish with chicken or fish…or add to a green salad for color and flavor.




Saturday, August 3, 2013

Veggie Burgers that Hold Their Shape AND have Flavor

I've been searching for a veggie burger recipe where the burgers would both hold their shape and have some flavor. These fit the bill!


Ingredients
  • 1 cup of dried chick peas, soaked overnight in 2 cups of water
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • To taste:
    • Chiplote powder
    • Chili powder
    • Garlic powder
    • Salt
    • Black Pepper
    • Oregano

Directions:
  • Drain chick peas
  • Pulse in blender until coarsely chopped
  • Add onion and spices
  • Pulse till well mixed
  • Mixture should hold together when formed into a ball
  • Don't overmix...you don't want it too soft or it will fall apart when cooking!
  • Using a 1/3 cup measuring cup, form into uniform patties. This mixture makes @7-8 patties this size.
  • Turn patties onto parchment on a plate and refridgerate until firm. I kept mine in the fridge overnight. 
  • To cook, put 3-4 tablespoons olive oil in a non-stick frying pan. Heat the oil. 
  • Add patties, with enough space between them that you can flip them. 
  • Cook 2-3 minutes per side, till the sides get golden brown and slightly crispy.
  • When both sides are cooked, transfer to a baking dish and bake in the oven for another 7-9 minutes until firm and centers are cooked. 

These burgers were very tasty with fresh tomato, lettuce and ketchup. 

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Connecticut Strawberry Ice Cream

24 hours - farm to freezer.

Ingredients:

  • 2 quarts of fresh strawberries, washed, hulled, quartered
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla flavoring
  • 2 pints heavy cream

Directions:

  • Macerate strawberries in 1/2 cup of sugar until well juiced.
  • Add vanilla to strawberries
  • Mash or blend strawberry mixture. I used a hand immersion blender.
  • Add heavy cream and the rest of the sugar. 
  • Mix well. 
  • Add to ice cream maker, according to the manufacturer's directions. 
  • When ice cream has reached the desired firmness, transfer to a freezer container. 
  • Cover with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap into the mixture to work out any air bubbles.
  • Put in freezer until ice cream is well set. 
  • Homemade ice cream is even better on the second day, when the flavors have set!
  • Scoop into bowls and serve. 















Yellow Curry & Lemongrass Tofu

This is pretty spicy, but adding some lemon juice and honey while cooking really rounded out the flavor.

Ingredients:
  • 1 package extra firm tofu, drained, pressed, and cubed
  • 1 small jicama, diced
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1 small red pepper, diced
  • 1 pound bok choy - firm ends diced and leaves chopped
  • 1 bunch cilantro, washed and minced
  • 1 -2 teaspoons yellow curry paste
  • 11 oz coconut water (one can)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried lemongrass
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 - 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 - 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • sea salt
Directions:
  • First, make a marinade for the tofu cubes. In a bowl, combine yellow curry paste, coconut water, dried lemongrass, garlic powder, soy sauce and sea salt to taste. The marinade will be very spicy... so add the yellow curry in small amounts and adjust to taste. Mix well. 
  • Add tofu cubes to the bowl, covering completely with the marinade. 
  • Set aside.
  • In a large saute pan, add olive oil and diced red pepper. Saute over high heat. 
  • As red pepper begins to cook, add carrots, jicama and the firm ends of the bok choy.
  • Saute the firm vegetables until all begin to cook.
  • Reduce to medium heat and add some of the marinade liquid to the pan.
  • Using a slotted spoon, remove the tofu from the marinade, and add to the vegetable mixture.
  • Gradually add more and more of the marinade to the saute pan, gently folding in the tofu and vegetables.
  • As the liquid heats up, add the chopped leaves of the bok choy and the cilantro.
  • Add lemon juice and honey
  • Fold all ingredients together
  • Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until the greens are cooked.
  • Serve with your choice of rice

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Chick Pea Crusted Baked Tofu

Last week, I tried a second version of veggie burgers, using canned chick peas, onions, egg and a host of garlic and oregano spices. The flavor was wonderful, but like my prior attempt at veggie "burgers", the texture just wasn't there and the mixture wouldn't hold a shape.

So, today, I tried something different. I crumbled the remaining chick pea mix onto a cookie sheet and lightly toasted it into a breadcrumb-like texture.


Then, I drained and sliced some firm tofu, bathed it in egg and dipped it into the chickpea crumbs.
Next, I baked it on a cookie sheet at 475 for 35 minutes, flipping it once.


Here's lunch today:


Chick Pea crusted Baked Tofu, roasted beets and kale chips.