Friday, July 30, 2010

Pico de Gallo, Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches, and a nice "dealing with the remaining produce" recipe

I'm getting hungry just thinking about these next recipes, both of which I have not had yet this year.  Both are from a CSA that I was a part of in Michigan years ago and have been staples since...  Pico de Gallo and Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches.... Plus an added "what to do with all the leftover veggies before you pick up the new ones" recipe--this one from Beth, a fellow CSAer (thanks, Beth.)

Pico de Gallo:
2 large tomatoes, diced into small chunks
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 serrano chiles or 1jalapeno (seeded), diced
1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 tbs cilantro, chopped
salt to taste
juice of 1 lime or 2 tsp cider vinegar
water and maybe a touch of olive oil if not watery enough.

Combine.  Yum.

Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches:
2 small eggplant (or 1 big one :)
1 garlic clove sliced in half
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 french baguette
6 oz goat cheese
basil leaves
caramelized balsamic vinegar--heat 3/4 cup to boiling, reduce heat and boil for 10 minutes until 1/4 cup--thick and syrupy.

slice eggplant 1/2 inch thick, salt and drain, rub with garlic cloves and brush with oil.
Grill for 8-10 minutes (or broil), until tender
Load up the baguette to your liking. 

And, finally the "Clean your fridge" recipe,  verbatim from Beth, below:

Something I’ve been doing towards the end of every week this summer to use up remaining veggies is – Take whatever you’ve got left, stir fry, add peanut sauce (I use “It’s Arthur’s Fault”.)  Then do roll your own burritos with rice (I usually have leftover rice in the fridge by the end of the week, and tortillas are a staple,) any remaining lettuce or other greens, grated cheese, and salsa.  Quick and easy dinner that my family likes a lot.

Enjoy your week!


Saturday, July 24, 2010


Here are a couple recipes that celebrate the incredibleness of Josh's heirlooms.  Enjoy

Tabouli: (recipe from an old friend that I've had forever.)

Add 2 cups of water to 1 cup bulghar.  Let sit for 2 hrs of more until soaked up
1/2 tsp cumin, mint (more if fresh), oregano, pepper
1 tsp salt
2 large tomatoes, chopped
1 bunch green onions
1/4-1/2 cup parsley

And, below:  Watermelon and Tomato salad.  Had a version of this at Shelburne Farms once.  Because of the heirloom tomatoes, it was one of the best concoctions I have ever tasted, seriously.  (I haven't tried this version, yet.  Plan to this week. Let's hope it will be half as amazing.  I know Josh's tomatoes are just as tasty.)

4 cups watermelon cut in large dice
4 cups tomatoes (about 5 medium) cut in large dice
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
2 tablespoons thinly sliced (chiffonade) basil, divided
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt

1. Place the watermelon, tomato, onion and half the basil in large mixing bowl. Drizzle with oil and vinegar.

2. Season to taste with salt and pepper, toss, sprinkle with the remaining basil, and serve.


Saturday, July 17, 2010

The bounty has begun!

One simple recipe, and then what to do with an eggplant...

A simple Greek Salad:

1/3 tomatoes, cut in big wedges
1/3 cucumbers, big slices (note: if you can keep the skins on, I just learned that's where most of the healthiness is.)
1/3 lettuces
Add some feta
and olives, if desired...
And the red onions might work well, too.

Dressing is a combo of 1/2 olive oil, 1/2 red wine vinegar, and a little garlic, if desired.  Always nice if it can be chilled for a couple hours...

And, then, dealing with eggplant...
Firstly, let me say that eggplant scared me until I joined a CSA and then had to deal with them, they always seemed bitter and chewy...but then my former farmer filled me in...

Firstly, use them within the first few days of getting them... To prepare, I slice them 1/3 of inch thick and then sprinkle salt on them and let them sit for twenty minutes to pull out the moisture.  I then wipe them down with a paper towel.  That seems to cut down on the bitterness.

For the chewiness, I brush them with olive oil and broil until they brown a little on either side and get a softer consistency.  Then, I throw them in whatever recipe I choose to use.

And the recipe I choose: Thai Spicy Eggplant with Sweet Basil, from Vegetarian Times

1 cup jasmine rice
2 Tbs. peanut or vegetable oil
1/2 to 1 tsp. crushed red pepper, or to taste
3 baby eggplants, cubed into bite-sized chunks
1 medium-sized onion, diced
1 medium-sized red bell pepper, seeded and diced
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 Tbs. white vinegar
3 Tbs. dark soy sauce, such as tamari
2 Tbs. dark brown sugar
20 leaves fresh basil, shredded or torn

  1. Cook jasmine rice according to package directions.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a deep skillet or wok-shaped pan over high heat. Add oil and crushed red pepper, and let sizzle for 10 to 15 seconds. Add eggplant, and stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes. Add onion, bell pepper and garlic, and stir-fry for 3 minutes more. Add vinegar and soy sauce. Sprinkle with sugar, and toss for 1 or 2 minutes longer.
  3. Remove pan from heat, add basil leaves and toss to combine with eggplant. Serve over hot cooked rice.


Friday, July 09, 2010

Squash Soup with Parsley Mint Pesto, etc

One of our fellow CSAers, Charles Goodnight, sent out a perfect recipe for what we've
been getting that I thought I'd share with you:  Potato-Swiss Chard Curry.  And, the other
recipe I found on Epicurious, which I wouldn't have even considered in yesterday's heat, but
in todays perfect weather, at least in Michigan where I write from, it sounds tasty:  
Squash Soup with Parsley Mint Pesto
Potato-Swiss Chard Curry
1 lb red skin potatoes cut into 1inch chunks
olive oil
1 tsp sugar
1-2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 onion sliced white and green part
1 clove garlic or 2 garlic scapes diced
1 bunch (4c) swiss chard
2 tomatoes (or 1 14.5 oz can) peeled and diced, retain liquid
Boil potatoes for 4-6 minutes until just barely cooked, drain.
Heat oil in large skillet, add potatoes, spices, onion and garlic, cook 
for 2-3 minutes.
Add Swiss Chard and Tomatoes, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 4-6 
This could be dressed up with more curry spices (maybe some turmuric for 
a yellow color), but frankly its a great dish as is.

Squash soup with Parsley Mint Pesto:For squash soup
  • 3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into pieces (can use a lot less)
  • 1 medium onion, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise (try the scallions, diced, otherwise)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 lb yellow summer squash, halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 carrots, thinly sliced
  • 1 yellow-fleshed potato (1/2 lb), peeled, halved,
  • 4 cups chicken stock or reduced-sodium chicken broth

for pistou
  • 3/4 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley sprigs
  • 1 large scallion, chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Make soup:
Melt butter in a 6- to 8-quart wide heavy pot over moderate heat, then cook onion with salt, stirring, until softened, about 8 minutes. Add squash, carrots, potato, and stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, then simmer, partially covered, until vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and cool soup, uncovered, 10 minutes.
Working in batches, pur&eacutee; soup in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids) and transfer to a bowl. Return puré to cleaned pot and thin with water if desired; simmer 3 minutes. Season with salt.

Make pistou while vegetables simmer:
Pulse mint, parsley, and scallion in a food processor until finely chopped. With motor running, add oil in a stream, then add water and salt, blending until incorporated.
Swirl 1 tablespoon pistou into each bowl of soup. 

And, lastly, had an enjoyable visit to the farm...



Friday, July 02, 2010

Swiss Chard Frittata

This week's recipe is a bit of a copout, because it is taken verbatim from  The blogger is a professional chef who does amazing stuff.  I'm always looking for things to do with the healthy swiss chard.  And you can use the onions too.  Enjoy!
Swiss Chard Frittata
2 T. Olive oil
4 or 5 spring onions, minced (white and some of green)—about 1 cup
1 clove garlic, minced (optional)
5 to 6 oz. cleaned Swiss Chard, cut in a wide chiffonade
Salt & Pepper, to taste
7 to 8 eggs (room temperature), lightly beaten
2 oz. grated Gruyère, Fontina or Provolone
2 to 3 T. grated Parmesan

Heat 1 1/2 T. of oil in a 10-inch nonstick skillet. Add the onion and cook over medium heat until tender—about 5 to 10 minutes. Add some salt and the garlic and cook just until fragrant. Add the chard. Cover and cook until wilted and tender—another 10 minutes or so. Uncover and continue to cook until any liquid given off by the chard has cooked off.

When the chard is cooked stir it into the eggs. Season with salt and pepper. Wipe out the skillet and return it to the heat, increasing the heat to medium-high. Add the remaining ½ T. of oil to the skillet. When the skillet is hot, add the egg mixture. As the eggs begin to set, shake the pan back and forth and with a rubber spatula lift the edges of the coagulated eggs in order to let the uncooked egg run underneath. Continue cooking and shaking and lifting until the eggs are mostly cooked but still moist on top. This should only take a few minutes.

Place the skillet under the broiler and broil just until the surface is no longer moist—about 30 seconds. Sprinkle the cheese over the surface and broil again until the cheese melts—another 30 seconds.

Slide the finished frittata onto a platter or cutting board and let sit for a minute or two. Cut into wedges and serve. The frittata may also be served at room temperature. Serves 4.