Wednesday, July 12, 2017

More summer recipe ideas

Hey customers, cookers, and eaters! These past two weeks have been ripe with more ideas for what we have in the stand right now. For the Forth of July, I made a vegetable-centered meal featuring a tomato and roasted vegetable risotto! One of my CSA members gave me an idea on how to make a less-cheese centered mac and cheese, and then yesterday, I took some of Bill Logan's Carolina Artisan Bread and made a quick pizza/flatbread sort of thing. It's been a fun two weeks of delicious, locally-sourced eating for me and my family.

The first step in making the risotto was to saute all of the arborio rice and some onions in olive oil for a few minutes. While this was going on, I chopped up some squash and zucchini, tossed them in olive oil, salt and pepper and threw them in the oven to roast at 350 until tender. I also put 6 tomatoes, cut in half on an oiled baking (cut side down) sheet and tossed them in the over as well. Then I started adding the liquids, first with vegetable stock. I stirred it till it absorbed, then added some soy milk. I stirred that till it absorbed, and then I added some white wine. Guess what I did next? I stirred it till it absorbed. I added some more vegetable stock and kept stirring, repeating till almost finished. When the tomatoes looked like they had cooked  through, I took them out, let them cool a bit and removed the skin. It slid right off. I put the tomatoes and the juices from the pan into the risotto and cooked it some more, stirring and letting the tomatoes assimilate. When it was creamy and smooth, I put it in a serving dish and topped it with the roasted vegetables. We served it with a cucumber salad (thinly sliced cucumbers, onions, a tiny bit sour cream, salt, pepper, lemon juice, and celery seed) veggie burgers, and some sliced tomatoes.

One great idea a customer of mine gave me was using squash and zucchini to cut the amount of cheese in a mac and cheese. Not only does it cut the amount of cheese, but it increases the amount of vegetables (from zero to like 6). Plus it's delicious. First, you roughly cut 10 squash and zucchini, a sprig of rosemary, some garlic, and one onion. Toss them in olive oil, salt and pepper, and put them in the oven to roast. Start boiling your water for your macaroni. Add in the macaroni, but remove it from heat and drain about minute before its finished. Next, take the roasted squash, zucchini, garlic, rosemary ( just the leaves) and onion from the oven and put them in a blender. Add in enough soy milk to get the blender going and let it develop into a thin paste, like pancake batter. Add in some poultry seasoning if you feel like it. Don't if you don't feel like it. Then, toss your pasta in the mixture so that it coats it like a regular mac and cheese. Add in some Parmesan cheese if you'd like. Top with a bit of mozzarella, provolone, or white cheddar if you want. Or don't. Pop it back in the over and let the macaroni finish cooking.   Then you eat it. You can tell your kids its full of vegetables, or don't. I served it with one of my favs: cucumber soup. Just peel and quarter some cucumbers and an onion. Place them in a blender with an avocado and some soy milk to get the blending started. Add salt and pepper and your choice of herb: either dill or cilantro. Blend until smooth. SOOOOOO good and refreshing. Great as a dip too if you make it a little thicker!

One final recipe/food idea I 'd like to share with you is for a quick farm fresh pizza or flat bread sorta thing. I took one of Bill Logan's classic loaves and split it in two. if you want a thin crust, you can easily split it into three. I then stuck it in the oven to let it toast. I chopped up four tomatoes, a bunch of basil, one hot pepper, and a small onion. I tossed them in olive oil salt and pepper, took the bread out from the oven, and topped it with the tomato mixtures. I put it back in the oven while I chopped up some squash, zucchini, and peppers. I tossed them in olive oil, salt, and pepper, removed the bread from the oven, and then topped it with the squash mixture. I sprinkled it with a little cheese and put it back in the oven for enough time for the squash to soften. Then I ate it. It was delicious and easy and made very few dishes. Perfect for a weekday evening when you don't want to get your kitchen messy and hot.

So how are you going to make these recipes your own? 
Happy Cooking and Be Creative! 

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