elevating the status of the salad

Category Archives: CSA

IMG_6081Are you tired of sautéing or steaming your green beans? Well, the temperature finally dropped below 80 degrees, so now is a great time to make some soup.

This is a protein-packed vegan soup with a mild flavor and very few ingredients.

Thank you to Chocolate & Zucchini for this wonderful recipe, which I adapted only a little bit based on what I had in my fridge this morning!

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 onions, peeled and chopped

1 garlic clove, peeled and smashed

12 baby carrots,  sliced

About a pound of green beans, rinsed and trimmed

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup vegetable broth

3 cups water

1.5 cups sliced almonds

Directions:

  1. Heat the oil in a medium heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add the onions and carrots, and cook over medium heat, stirring every now and then, until softened and very lightly golden. Add the garlic and stir for minute. Add the green beans to the pot, season with salt and pepper, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring from time to time.
  2. Pour in the broth and water, bring to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 20 minutes, until all the vegetables are soft. In the meantime, pour the sliced almonds in a dry skillet. Set over medium-high heat and toast for about two minutes, stirring constantly and watching closely, until golden and fragrant. Set aside in a bowl to prevent overtoasting.
  3. When the vegetables are soft, add the  almonds to the pot and stir well. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Use a high powered or immersion blender to mix all ingredients until velvety smooth. Taste, adjust the seasoning, reheat over gentle heat if necessary, and serve.

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Sometimes G goes on a ketchup, butter, and bacon diet, like at dinner last night.

Then I wake up the next morning and try to do some damage control.

Enter Greek Yogurt Ice Pops. Thanks to CB for the inspiration!

I used blackberries and peaches because that’s what was at the Carroll Gardens Farmer’s Market yesterday, but you can use any fruit/yogurt combination. Why not put in some greens, too?

We did rainbow pops last year without yogurt and those are just as delicious but in a different vegan sort of way. It depends on what you’re in the mood for. If you want to know more about these freezer molds, check out that post. 

Ingredients:

1/3 cup Greek Yogurt (We love Wallaby)

a handful of blackberries (I used 5 large ones)

1 peach, peeled

1 teaspoon honey

1/2 cup water, more as needed

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until liquified. Add more water to thin as needed. Freeze for at least 4 hours. Enjoy!

BONUS: If you have a toddler, this human can help you with every step of this process. G especially liked putting the handles in the molds like a little puzzle. 


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Here’s another way to preserve the jalapeños that are taking over my rooftop. If you don’t have this problem, its worth buying a whole bunch of hot peppers so you can make your own spicy sauce, which is much better than anything you can buy in the store.  I only slightly modified yet another incredible recipe from Karen Solomon’s Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It.

This recipe makes about 3 cups and the sauce will last in the fridge for 6 months.

Warning: Wear gloves and work in a well-ventilated area when working with jalapeños.

Ingredients:

20-25 jalapeño peppers

2 large cloves of garlic, peeled

1.5 T kosher salt

1 cup distilled white vinegar

2 T sugar

Directions:

  1. Wash and dry the peppers and cut off the stems. Slice them in half lengthwise. Broil, outside skin near flame, until black and charred. Check the  every few minutes as once they start charring, they turn black pretty quick.
  2. In a food processor or blender, puree the garlic until minced. Add the peppers, salt, vinegar, and sugar and puree for about 3 minutes. If you have a high power blender, just run all the ingredients together for 1 minute.
  3. Transfer to a glass jar and refrigerate.

 


Here’s a quick way to preserve jalapeño peppers. Great for topping nachos, salads, in sandwiches, etc. 

Ingredients:

3/4 cup distilled white vinegar

3/4 cup water 

1 garlic clove, crushed

3 T white sugar

1 T kosher salt

10 jalapeños, sliced into rings – use gloves to chop or you’ll regret it later when you take out your contact lenses. 

Directions: 

Pour all ingredients except peppers into a small pot. Once mixture boils, stir in jalapeños and remove from heat. Let sit for ten minutes and watch the color turn before your very eyes. 
Use tongs or a slotted spoon to transfer jalapeños  to a pint size mason jar and cover with vinegar mixture. Bottle it up, and enjoy topping your food with a kick for the next month or so. 



Here’s a great way to get creative with your bumper crop of cucumbers, and it takes only 10 minutes from garden to plate. I used a mandolin for maximum beauty and because I like to live on the edge. Thanks to Karen Solomon and her book Jam It, Pickle It, Cure It for this and so many other fun kitchen ideas. 

Ingredients:

1 large cucumber – sliced thin 

1 small red onion-sliced thin

2 teaspoons brown rice syrup (or sugar or your sweetener of preference)

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/2 cup unseasoned rice vinegar 

Mix all ingredients together and let sit for 30 minutes. It can be refrigerated for 2 days. 


Dwight Shrute would be so proud, I just know it. I am really taking advantage of all the beets this season.This recipe comes from Food and Wine’s September, 2012 issue. It has the winning combination of beets and goat cheese, and a spicy kick as well.
Also, I had a lovely experience getting ingredients (za’atar, yogurt, hazelnuts, tomato paste, goat cheese) at Sahadi’s on Atlantic Avenue this morning. The helpful grocer teaching me about za’atar explained that it can also be used as part of a salad dressing. I will have to try that. I’ve only been to Sahadi’s on very crowded weekends before, and it was a joy to be able to peruse without feeling like I was in someone else’s way. Oh, summer! 

Ingredients:

  • 6 medium beets (1 1/2 pounds), trimmed (I used 4 very large beets)
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small red chile, seeded and minced (I used dried chile flakes instead)
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon za’atar
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup roasted skinned hazelnuts, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons goat cheese, crumbled
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced
  • Warm bread, for serving

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Put the beets in a small roasting pan and add 1/4 cup of water. Cover with foil and bake for about 1 hour, until tender. Let cool slightly.
  2. Peel the beets, cut into wedges and transfer to a food processor. Add the garlic, chile and yogurt and pulse until blended. Add the olive oil, maple syrup and za’atar and puree. Season with salt. Scrape into a wide, shallow bowl. Scatter the hazelnuts, goat cheese and scallions on top and serve with bread.

When making this salad, I thought it was going to be really weird. Then, I couldn’t stop eating it. The combination of spicy and sweet is definitely addicting, so watch out. Sweet Corn Charlie had arava, which looks like a cantaloupe from the outside and a honeydew from the inside. It is as sweet as candy, with none of the HFCS. I also used cantaloupe. However, you can use any melon you want. The original recipe called for blackberries, but those were not an option at the farmstand , so I used raspberries. The original recipe is from Food and Wine magazine.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 green melon (about 1 1/4 pounds)—halved, cut into wedges, peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 orange or yellow melon (about 1 1/4 pounds)—halved, cut into wedges, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons snipped chives

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, shallot, and crushed red pepper and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Arrange the melon and raspberries on a platter. Drizzle the dressing over the fruit. Garnish the salad with the feta and snipped chives and serve.

This salad was a huge hit last night. Perhaps it was the backdrop of a beautiful sunset that swayed people’s opinions, but I’m going to give all the credit to the dressing. I’m not typically a ranch dressing kind of gal, but this one was tangy (I was a bit liberal with the vinegar) and not too heavy. This recipe made a good amount of dressing for 4 cups of thinly sliced green cabbage, 2 chopped tomatoes, and 1 jicama peeled and cut into 1/ 2 inch cubes. However, it would be great over any vegetable with a good crunch factor that you have lying around…do I hear the kohlrabi from last week’s CSA calling to you? 

I found this gem of a recipe on Smitten Kitchen, and it originated from Gourmet magazine.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup well-shaken buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped chives

Directions:

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together all ingredients through the sugar.

2. Once the sugar is dissolved, stir in the chives.

3. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


This post is a result of a request from a friend who has great taste in posters. I have a feeling this friend also has an abundance of garlic scapes lurking in her fridge.

Honestly, I don’t remember the amounts. This is really more of a technique. You can adjust the amounts according to your taste. I think this pesto would be great as a bruschetta. 

If you have too much pesto, you can freeze whatever you won’t eat that day.  I used a few tablespoons of it with some angel hair pasta and a bit of the pasta’s cooking sauce. I froze the rest in ice cube trays for future meals. 

Thanks for the inspiration, omnonnombk!

Ingredients:

  • Around 5 garlic scapes
  • a handful of basil
  • 3 tablespoons pine nuts (You can toast these first if you want to get fancy)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Using a food processor, blend together the first 4 ingredients until well combined, scraping the sides as needed.
  2. Add the parmesan cheese and process again until blended together.
  3. Use the small hole in the food processor to slowly add olive oil while the blender is going. You’ll need to scrape down the sides a few times.



UPDATE: I made the salad again, and this time I took a photo of it. I used 1 clove of regular garlic instead of garlic scopes this time around.

 I’ve heard a lot of people talking about how to deal with the mess from peeling beets. I know, I know, I am part of some riveting conversations. Below, I explain a trick I learned. 

I never cooked with fava beans before. The internet warned me that they are time-consuming, and this is true. However, the internet also let me know it would be worth the time. Also true. Wow, the internet is so smart.

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium-sized beets
  • 1/2 pound fava beans
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta
  • 2 garlic scapes
  • juice of 1/2 juicy lemon
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1. First, you need to get the beets in the oven. Jack Bishop, author of “Year in the Vegetarian Kitchen” suggests heating an oven to 400 degrees, wrapping the beets (cut off any dangling roots and the stalks) in two layers of aluminum foil, and cooking for 1-1.25 hours. After an hour, test your beets to see if a skewer glides easily through them. If so, they are done. Then, allow the beets to cool a bit before handling. Last, take a wad of paper towels to rub off the skin. (that’s the cool trick!) The last step for the beets is to cut them into the shape you want for your salad. Then, place the beets in a medium-sized bowl.

2. Once your beets are in the oven, start to deal with the beans. Get some water boiling.  While you are waiting for it to boil, peel off the stringy part to reveal the beans inside. As a bonus, you will discover that the inside of the pod is pillowy. Fascinating! The sad part will be when you realize that you don’t get a heck of a lot of beans for all that work. But you will get over it once you eat the beans (says the internet).

3. Next, put the beans in boiling water for a little under a minute. While that’s happening, prepare a bowl of ice cold water. Then, spoon out the beans and put them directly into the cold water to stop the cooking.

4. One more step before you eat the beans. Pinch off the outer shell to get to the edible part. You did it!

5. In a food processor (I used the mini prep), combine garlic scapes, lemon juice, olive oil, red wine vinegar, and a bit of salt and pepper to taste. Pour the dressing over the beets and stir to coat the beets

6. Arrange the dressed beets on a serving dish. Top with feta cheese and beans. (You can toss the ingredients all together, but the result will be a very pink salad.) Enjoy!