Tag Archives: Vegetables

An Autumn Harvest of Wonder

  Discover the website Waldorfish where my guest post about covering the hoop house and the magic of nasturtiums gives a peak into  why I love teaching gardening.

Source: An Autumn Harvest of Wonder

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Fall Vegetable Lasagna

This hearty lasagna is perfect for that transitional time, when late-summer produce is winding down and the first fall vegetables appear at farmers’ markets. Combining yellow squash, zucchini, and mushrooms, the dish comes together quickly, with a ready-to-use pasta sauce. In this dish, I used butternut squash pasta sauce being offered by the local grocery store and the results were spectacular. Please feel free to use whatever store-bought sauce that you like for this satisfying dish.

Serves 8 to 10

Ingredients:
One pound whole milk ricotta cheese
1 Tablespoon julienned fresh sage
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh oregano
1 medium egg
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 Parmesan cheese, grated
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
2 yellow summer squash, cut into rounds 1/4-inch thick
2 zucchini, cut into rounds 1/4-inch thick
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1-3 Tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
One pound baby portabello mushrooms, sliced
1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
One 24-ounce jar of butternut squash pasta sauce (click here for the resource)
12 sheets dried ruffle-edged lasagna noodles, cooked until al  dente
1/2 pound Italian fontina cheese, shredded
1/2 pound Mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/2 pound plain goat cheese, crumbled

Directions:
Preheat an oven to 450°F Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

In a bowl, stir together the ricotta, Parmesan cheese, egg, sage, 3 tablespoons of the parsley. oregano, garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, toss the yellow squash and zucchini with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, and season with thyme, salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Transfer to the oven and roast until tender and lightly browned, about 15 minutes.

In a separate bowl, toss mushrooms and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, and season with thyme, salt and pepper, Place in a large cast iron skillet and transfer to the oven and roast until tender, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in an Dutch oven over medium heat, warm the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and add the yellow squash zucchini and mushrooms. Reduce the oven temperature to 400°F .

Spread 1/2 cup  pasta sauce in an even layer on the bottom of the Dutch oven. Arrange a single layer of lasagna noodles on top, tearing them as needed to fit. Spread 1/2 cup ricotta mixture on the noodles and scatter 1 cup vegetable mixture on top. Spread 1/2 cup  pasta sauce over the vegetables and sprinkle 1/2 cup fontina, 1/2 cup mozzarella, 1/2 goat cheese on top. Layer the noodles, ricotta, vegetables, sauce and cheese three more times, omitting the sauce and cheeses on the last layer. Top with the remaining noodles, sauce and fontina.

Transfer to the oven and bake until the sauce is bubbly and the cheese is melted and browned, 45 to 50 minutes. Sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon of  parsley on top. Let the lasagna rest for 15 minutes before serving.

Petite Pommes Anna

Adapted from Molly Stevens
From BON APPÉTIT,  November 2012
Mini Herbed Pommes Anna recipe

This side dish is a very simple deconstruction of that classic  French casserole potato dish, Pommes Anna, consisting of  of thinly sliced potatoes that are layered and cooked in a generous amount of melted butter. This version is  presented as a single-serve dish with the classic French  attitude.The more carefully you arrange the potato slices, the prettier the results and the better the individual-size cakes will hold together.

They are perfect side dish to go along with baked chicken or even a slab of braised short ribs and they will be sure to impress your guests at the dinner table.

Enjoy!

  
Serves   12
Ingredients:
1 stick unsalted butter
12-24 small tender fresh  thyme sprigs plus 2 teaspoons coarsely chopped leaves
1 garlic clove, minced
1 3/4 pounds small Yukon Gold potatoes, each slightly larger than a golf ball
2 teaspoons kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Special equipment:
A standard 12-cup muffin pan
A mandoline
Parchment paper

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350°F. Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Brush muffin cups all over with butter. Line bottoms with parchment-paper rounds. Arrange 1-2 small thyme sprigs in center of each round. Drizzle 1/2 teaspoon butter into bottom of each cup.Add chopped thyme and garlic to remaining butter in saucepan. Stir over medium-low heat until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat.Using mandoline, slice potatoes crosswise into very thin rounds (less than 1/16″ thick), placing them in a large bowl as you work. Pour herb butter over and season with salt and pepper; toss to coat well.Divide potato slices among muffin cups, layering overlapping slices to create a circular pattern. Lightly press center of each to make compact. Drizzle any remaining butter and seasoning from bowl over.

Cover muffin pan tightly with foil and place on a baking sheet. Bake until potatoes can be pierced easily with the tip of a knife, about 35 minutes. Remove foil; invert a rimmed baking sheet over pan. Turn, lightly tapping on counter, releasing potatoes onto sheet. Rearrange any slices that may have fallen out. Using a metal spatula, carefully turn cakes, thyme sprigs facing down. Discard parchment. DO AHEAD: Potatoes can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.

Increase heat to 425°F. Uncover cakes if needed. Bake until bottoms and edges are golden and crispy, 25 to 30 minutes. Carefully turn cakes, thyme sprigs facing up. Serve immediately

Stir-Fried Bean Sprouts

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Inspired by Chinese Cantonese Cuisine, this light and refreshing dish is so easy to prepare. Make sure  that you use fresh bean sprouts, rather than the canned variety, for a crunchy texture. The beauty of this dish is that it can served hot or cold and is perfect for a light lunch or an evening meal.

Serves 4

Ingredients:
2 2/3 cups fresh bean sprouts
3 scallions
1 medium red bell pepper
3 Tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 Tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce
A dash of sesame seed oil

Directions:
Using a colander, rinse the bean sprouts in cold water, discarding any husks or small pieces that float to the top. Drain well and pat dry with paper towels and set aside.

Slice the scallions on the diagonal in short sections. Core the red bell pepper, removing the seeds and cut the red bell pepper into thin strips.

Heat the oil in a preheated wok or large saute pan. Add the bean sprouts, scallions and red bell pepper. Stir fry for about 2 minutes

Add the sugar, salt, soy sauce and sesame seed oil to the vegetables. Stir well to blend. Serve hot or cold.

Cook’s Notes:
As a variation, you can use thinly sliced red chili peppers with the seeds removed, to give will give this dish a spicy bite. You can also leave the seeds in for an even more hotter taste.

Panko Fried Green Tomatoes

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During my travels this Summer, I had an opportunity to make a stop along the Gulf Shores, in Biloxi, Mississippi. While staying at the Beau Rivage, I dined at  The Buffet, for lunch and was presently surprised at how fresh and inviting the food was.

Yes, I know what you are thinking…. “all casinos have buffets.” But not this buffet. Forget the tired old image and experience a line-up of creations that rivals the best restaurants on the Gulf Coast. No wonder savvy locals consistently choose The Buffet for weekend brunch and holiday dinners. The variety is unparalleled, and so is the quality.

DSC00485The atmosphere is lively, contemporary and warm ……the décor was that of French Copper Pots DSC00484and Cooking Utensils. How imaginative!– A perfect backdrop to the amazing array of mouth-watering food.

Take your time and sample enticing flavors from around the globe; succulent meats carved or grilled to your specifications; made-to-order pastas and omelets; classic comfort food, including down home Southern-style favorites; plus, the most bountiful fresh seafood and salads available anywhere. And the desserts?  Well, you will  just have to try one. Or several.  Now, this is a  real  buffet!

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Anyways, I have digressed…….

For me, the star of the buffet were the Panko Fried Green Tomatoes. They were absolutely to die for. Panko bread crumbs have a coarser texture than ordinary bread crumbs, which you can also use to coat the tomatoes. Yet,  the panko crumbs gave the fried tomatoes a uniquely light and crispy texture and they were seasoned with just the right amount of fresh herbs too.

I  re-created  this quintessential Southern side dish and the results were pretty close to the ones I had while visiting the Gulf Shores.

Enjoy !

Makes 8 to 10 Servings

Ingredients:
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup buttermilk
3 eggs
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
12 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
Kosher salt, to taste
Cracked black pepper, to taste
2 cups Japanese panko  bread crumbs
5 medium green tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch slices
Canola oil, for deep-fat frying

Directions:
In a large bowl, combine the , flour, garlic powder, black pepper, salt,  parsley and thyme together.

In shallow bowl gently beat the eggs and the buttermilk together.

In  another shallow bowl, add  the panko bread crumbs. Dip  the tomato slices in flour, followed by the egg mixture, and then coat  the tomatoes with  the panko bread crumbs,  gently pressing the breadcrumbs into the slices of tomatoes, coating both sides well.

Heat the oil in a large cast iron skillet, to  375° F. Fry tomatoes, a few at a time, for 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown and crispy. Carefully remove the tomatoes and drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt. Serve immediately with hot pepper sauce, lemon or ranch dressing.

Baked Empanadas

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Who doesn’t love Empanadas….the delicious little turnover pastries that ca be stuffed with vegetables, savory meats, cheeses, sweet jellies, jams or anything else that a true foodie desires. Another great filling for empanadas can be leftover meatloaf, a spaghetti meat sauce, mashed potatoes and cheese, or even spinach and bacon, for a twist.

Just about every Latin country has a version of empanadas with variations of dough and fillings. Some are fried and some are baked.

Lately, I have been looking for more healthy alternatives for my for some of my favorite foods.

The recipe presented here, are made with ground turkey and a homemade dough infused with ground annatto seeds for color and for taste.

But if you are short on time, Goya now makes a line of empanada discs, both plain and annatto flavored. They can be found in the frozen section in most local grocery stores. If they are not available, make sure to inquire with the manager at your local supermarket to see if they can be ordered for you.


Serves 6 to 8

Ingredients:
Empanada Dough:
3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the work surface
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons sugar
1 Tablespoon ground annatto seed (optional if you want reddish orange dough)
Pinch salt
1/2 cup lard or vegetable shortening
1 egg
3/4 cup chicken stock


Empanada Filling:

1 teaspoon olive oil
1-1/2 pounds ground turkey
1/2 large chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 tomato, chopped
1 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced
2 Tablespoons cilantro
4 ounces tomato sauce
Kosher salt, to taste
Fresh ground pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon ground cumin

Vegetable Spray
Egg wash


Directions:

For the empanada dough:
Combine the flour, baking powder, sugar , annatto,and salt in a large bowl. Cut in the lard with a pastry blender or 2 knives until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal.

In a separate bowl, beat the egg and then whisk in the stock. Add the egg mixture
to the flour mixture and knead until a dough forms. Cover and refrigerate for 30
minutes.

Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough to 1/4 inch thick. Cut out 4-, 5- or 6-inch rounds, depending on how large you prefer.Layer cut sheets of wax paper between each disc before you stack them, then wrap and set aside in the refrigerator until ready to use.

For the Meat Filling:
Heat olive oil on medium heat until shimmering in large cast iron skillet. Add the ground turkey and season with salt and pepper. Use a wooden spoon to break the meat up into small pieces. When meat is no longer pink, drain all liquid from pan.

Add the onion, garlic, green bell pepper, red bell pepper, jalapeno,tomato,cilantro and cumin to the skillet.Add tomato sauce and mix well into the meat and vegetable mixture. Reduce heat and simmer covered about 15 to 20 minutes. The mixture should be moist but not dripping wet. Set aside until you are ready to fill the empanadas.

To make the empanadas
:
Add about 1 tablespoon of the meat filling to each empanada and fold the dough over in half to enclose the filling. Using your fingers, crimp the edges or use a fork to press and seal the edges closed. You can refrigerate the uncooked empanadas for up to 3 hours.

To cook the empandas:
Preheat the oven to 400°F.Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper and lightly spray with vegetable cooking spray.

Gently transfer each empanada onto the cookie sheet and lightly brush the top of the empanada with egg wash. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until golden brown.

Allow to cool before eating, the filling will be extremely hot.

Cook’s Note:
Goya makes empanada disks and can be used instead of making your own dough if you are pressed for time.

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Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

I have to say, cauliflower is truly an amazing vegetable. This delectable vegetarian recipe is as close as it gets to “real” buffalo wings. Before they are baked, they are dipped in a batter and then rolled in panko breadcrumbs. The panko breadcrumbs make these tasty snacks so crispy on the outside yet soft on the inside, that you will forget that you are eating cauliflower.

Enjoy!

 

 

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Ingredients:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup Water
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon  salt
1/2 teaspoon of Lawry’s Seasoning Salt
A pinch of cayenne pepper
1 package of chicken bouillon
1 head cauliflower
1 cup Japanese panko breadcrumbs
Vegetable cooking spray
1/4 cup sriracha sauce
3 Tablespoons butter, melted
Crumbled blue cheese, for garnish
Crumbled feta cheese, for garnish

 

Directions:
Preheat the  oven to 450°F.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, water, salt,garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, seasoning salt, cayenne pepper and stir until smooth. Add cauliflower and stir gently until florets are evenly coated with batter.

Roll the florets in the breadcrumbs.

Arrange the  cauliflower in a single layer on a lightly oiled, large baking sheet (preferably nonstick). Spray the cauliflower with vegetable cooking spray. Bake 20 minutes or until golden.

Combine the sriracha and melted butter  in a large bowl.Add the cauliflower and gently toss until cauliflower is evenly coated.

Arrange the coated cauliflower on the baking sheet and bake 10 minutes or until cauliflower begins to crisp, rearranging florets occasionally if needed. Garnish with a sprinkling of blue cheese and feta cheese.  Serve with celery and enjoy!

 

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Shaved Asparagus Salad With Limoncello Vinaigrette

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I love spring time produce and there is nothing more perfect than long green stalks of asparagus for a really quick meal.

What is trending in the food world right now is shaved vegetables eaten raw, like carrots, Brussel sprouts, and asparagus. And the best thing about shaved vegetables, you can eat them raw, making them the perfect ingredient for light salads that can be served for lunch and/or dinner.

In this recipe, a Limoncello vinaigrette is called for as a dressing for the salad. However, you can just use freshly squeezed lemon juice tossed with the shave asparagus for a truly paleo gluten-free salad.

Enjoy!

Serves 4

Ingredients:
One pound large asparagus spears, washed, trimmed and peeled

For the Vinaigrette:
1⁄4 cup limoncello
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 1⁄2 teaspoons dijon-style mustard
1⁄2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt, to taste

Blood orange zest, for garnish
Lemon zest, for garnish

Directions:
Working with 1 asparagus spear at a time, use a vegetable peeler to shave spears into long, thin shavings. Transfer to a medium bowl. The the tips will snap off as spears get thinner, so add them to the bowl as well.

Whisk the limoncello, lemon juice, zest and mustard in a small bowl.Whisk in the olive oil and season to taste with salt.

Drizzle vinaigrette over shaved asparagus and toss to coat. Divide asparagus salad among plates. Sprinkle orange an lemon zest over the salad and serve immediately.

Pan Seared Cauliflower Steaks

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Yes, I am obsessed with cauliflower right now……..

It is truly one of the most under used and most underrated vegetables, yet so versatile.It’s amazing how meaty cauliflower can be. In this recipe, thick slices of cauliflower are treated as if they were steaks, searing thick planks and then topping them with a lemony verde like sauce. The lemon herb sauce would also be just as delicious on chicken, fish and on other assorted vegetables, like asparagus.

This recipe is quick and easy and just in time for “Meatless Mondays” and can be served with steamed rice and a nice tomato salad.

Serves 4

Ingredients:
For the Lemon-Herb Sauce:
1 cup parsley leaves
½ cup cilantro leaves
½ cup mint leaves
1/4 cup tarragon leaves
½ cup roughly chopped scallions
1 garlic clove, smashed
Juice of 1 lemon
⅓ cup olive oil

For the Cauliflower Steaks:
1 large head cauliflower
4 Tablespoons oil, divided
4 teaspoons smoked paprika
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup dry white wine

Directions:
Make the herb sauce: In a blender or food processor, pulse the parsley, cilantro, mint, green onion, garlic, lemon juice and olive oil until completely smooth. Set aside.

To make the cauliflower steaks: With a sharp knife, cut the cauliflower into 1-inch-thick slices yielding about 8 slices. Rub both sides of each piece of cauliflower with about 1 teaspoon olive oil. Sprinkle both sides of each piece with ½ teaspoon smoked paprika, salt and pepper.

Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, sear the cauliflower steaks until they are golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Add the wine and cook until it is evaporated and the cauliflower is easily pierced with a knife, 3 to 5 minutes. The cauliflower should be easily pierced with a fork but not so tender that it falls apart.

To serve, place 2 cauliflower steaks on each plate and top with a generous drizzle of the lemon-herb sauce. Serve immediately.

Cook’s Note:
Any leftover lemon-herb sauce can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.