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Beans, Veg, Yogurt, Meat

23 Nov

Another simple meal pattern: legumes, roasted vegetables, yogurt, and optionally meat.

In this case, fresh shelling beans (simmered on medium-low 30-40 minutes with aromatics + herbs), winter squash from the garden and broccoli (both chopped, tossed with olive oil and salt, and roasted in a 400F oven for 20-30 minutes), and a pan-fried sausage and some yogurt (optional: fermented hot sauce).

It does take three pots/pans, but only 45 minutes (depending how long the beans take to cook), so it’s on our roster as a common weeknight or weekend meal with endless variants…IMG_20191003_201919.jpg

Leek / mushroom / eggplant pasta

16 Nov

An easy weeknight two-pot meal combining a range of fall ingredients I like.

  • Wash, trim, and chop two leeks (keeping most of the green part as well)
  • Put them in a skillet with a pat of butter on low heat, salt, cover, and let slowly cook for about 30 minutes as they give off water and reduce, until creamy-soft and sweet (stir once every 5 minutes or so)
  • While they’re cooking, skin and dice eggplants (I used 6 tiny eggplants from the garden, could also use one medium eggplant). Add them to the leeks for the last 15 minutes or so of the cooking time.
  • Clean and roughly break up chanterelle mushrooms, add them for the last 3-4 minutes.
  • Boil salty water for pasta, cook the pasta, throw diced green beans in for the last minute.
  • Drain the pasta, add to the skillet, and cook another minute. Serve.

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Winter Squash with Cardamom, Tahini, and Lime

31 Oct

My recent favorite way to eat winter squash is from the recipe in Ottolenghi’s Plenty, and a recent harvest of kabocha squash from our garden was a good excuse to make it again. The unexpected combination of roasted squash, fresh limes, tahini, and cardamom is remarkable:

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Preheat the oven to 400.

Start by peeling two limes (removing the pith and skin as well), slicing into rounds, and quartering (see the size in the photo above). Set them aside with a few pinches of salt and a drizzle of olive oil.

Peel the squash, remove the seeds, and slice it into thin slices. I used half of a kabocha as part of a hearty dinner for two. Grind 1 Tbsp (!) of cardamom seeds, a few allspice berries (or 1 tsp of allspice), a pinch of salt, and mix with 3-4 Tbsp of olive oil. Toss the squash in this, lay it out on parchment paper on a baking tray, and roast for 15-20 minutes until soft.

Mix 1/2 cup of yogurt, 2 Tbsp of tahini, 1 Tbsp lime juice, a pinch of salt, and a few Tbsp water (enough to thin the sauce out until it’s thick but you can pour it).

Lay out the squash, the lime sections, drizzle with the yogurt sauce, and garnish with cilantro and a thin-sliced serrano pepper.

Garden Frittata

10 Jun

Frittatas are my current go-to for an easy, satisfying dinner incorporating a lot of greens and whatever else is in the garden (it also makes great next-day leftovers, cold):

This particular evening I caramelized onions and fresh garlic (low heat, 15+ minutes?), sauteed morels in butter, and wilted chard and kale (cutting out the stems first and cooking them for a bit longer so they would soften). If I’m not in a hurry (e.g. already very hungry) I usually cook the components separately even though it dirties another pan or takes some extra time–  everything takes a different amount of time to cook well.

I pre-heated the oven to 375, and layered the (aliums, morels, greens) in the same cast iron skillet I used for the onions.

I whisked 8 eggs with salt and pepper and a little milk for several minutes / until very frothy and poured them into the skillet, then cooked this stovetop for 5 minutes or so to help brown and set the bottom (it’s not clear this is even needed– it’s just a force of habit).

Finally, I laid some big chunks of a soft cheese like goat chevre across the top and popped the whole thing in the oven for another 15-20 minutes, until the eggs puffed up and set.

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Stir Fry w/ Rattail Radish + Snow Peas

12 Feb

A simple stir-fry– cooking a series of ingredients individually in a hot pan with peanut oil (some very briefly– just a minute or two), in this case:

  • onions + sliced garlic + minced ginger
  • rattail radish pods from the garden (incredibly prolific plants crank out the long slender pods– no much flavor but a nice juicy/crunchy component when harvested before the individual seeds start to bulge in the pods)
  • snow peas also from the yard (planted in the late fall, harvesting in February)
  • a bell pepper
  • pre-made mapo tofu (includes miso and chili flake)

I just mix them at the end with a little soy sauce and serve over rice (I sometimes add black vinegar, miso, and/or chili flake, but not this time as the tofu was already seasoned).

They teed up good fried rice the next day, too (with some scrambled egg and kimchi).

Quick Pickled Radishes w/ Lemon Zest

3 Jan

IMG_20180103_192851I’ve made quick pickles many times– usually just soaking thinly-sliced vegetables in vinegar, but this simple variant turned out especially well so I’m jotting it down.

I started with a daikon and some sort of purple Japanese radish from the winter garden:

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I sliced them thinly and tossed them with a few tsp of salt, massaging/mixing them with the salt again after 5 minutes. After about 10 minutes the salt had drawn a large amount of moisture out of the radish slices, and I quickly rinsed them and patted them dry.

I then covered them in a little white wine vinegar and Meyer lemon zest and let them sit another 20 minutes. Voila! A nicely supple texture (firm but not as crunchy as a raw radish), fresh and tart with minimal bitterness.

 

Eggs with turmeric, cauliflower

5 Nov

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My go-to quick breakfast is eggs + whatever’s in the fridge, but this particular version turned out especially well and I may do it again. I cooked minced shallots and garlic in olive oil for several minutes, then added finely diced cauliflower and some turmeric for another maybe 5 minutes until the cauliflower was very soft. I pushed it to the side of the pan and scrambled the eggs next to it, then mixed it all together (plus some hot paprika powder from pepper I grew this summer, and of course, salt and pepper).