Monthly Archives: August 2008

Local Box, 08.27.2008

Here’s what showed up on my door step yesterday.  Some new and some familiar…

  • I’m psyched to see local edamame!  We’ll steam that up, salt it, and eat it out of the pods as a snack, I’m guessing.
  • I’ll roast and freeze the butternut squash, then stash it in the freezer to be retrieved for soup when the weather cools off.
  • The red potatoes are going to be great in this gratin I’ve been wanting to make.

But what about all those peppers?  How are you planning to use those?

Night-Before Cramming

My Local Box delivery day is Wednesday, so lately Tuesday nights have felt a little like Sunday nights felt back when papers were due Monday morning. Sure, I had all week to cook. But I saved a lot of it for the night before. I suppose I’m a hopeless procrastinator.

Last night, I turned to roasting to  make room for this week’s veggies. I started with the butternut squash and two acorn squash I’d accumulated. I punctured them with a fork, then put them whole on a baking sheet and stuck them in a 400-degree oven. Then onto okra: I tossed it with a dribble of olive oil, salt, and pepper. Then into the oven it went, joining the squash. When the okra came out, I sliced up an eggplant, coated it generously with olive oil, sprinkled with salt and pepper, and put it in, too, turning when it was brown on the bottom. I knew the squash were done when they gave way easily to a poke with a wooden spoon. The butternut came out first, followed by the acorns, one at a time.

After they’d cooled, I scooped the seeds from the squash, then packed the flesh into containers for the freezer. They’ll make great ravioli filling and soup when the temperature drops. (I can’t seem to shake my association of winter squash with, well, autumn.) I stuck the okra in the fridge to pack in lunches and eat as sides this week. And the eggplant? It didn’t last long enough to be stored. So golden and savory, my husband and I snarfed it down as finger food, right off the cookie sheet.

I also threw together some refrigerator pickles with the cucumbers I had left.  I heated approximately equal parts water and vinegar with a handful of sugar on the stove to a boil. Then I ladled that over sliced cucumbers with a bit of sliced burgundy onion and dried dill in a glass container and refrigerated overnight.

A note on winter-squash roasting: Next time I’ll go back to my old method of cutting them in half and removing the seeds first, then roasting on parchment, cut-sides down. Roasting them whole took too long, and it seemed like I lost more flesh than usual when I scooped out the seeds after roasting.

Report from Fearless Forager, week of 08.25.2008

Here’s what she’s got planned for our Local Boxes this week:

  • edamame
  • cucumber
  • cantaloupe
  • zucchini
  • pattypan squash
  • mixed variety okra
  • red, yellow, green & orange bell peppers
  • eggplant
  • red burgundy onions
  • chile peppers
  • red potatoes
  • “Caspian Pink” heirloom tomato
  • lettuce

Zucchini Carpaccio

We didn’t have any arugula, so Kris just skipped it when he made this dish last week. What an easy, elegant way to feature fresh, young Local Box zucchini!  (The Parmesan too, by the way, is local and came from Greenling.)

What are your plans to eat from your Local Box this weekend?

Pot Pie – New, and Improved!

We tried a pot pie a while back and didn’t love it. But last week, we decided to give it another go with a recipe in the current issue of Gourmet.  YUM!  It was a good bit more work than the other, and we made a few substitutions. Our filling included Local Box pattypan squash, yellow squash, garlic chives, okra, and tomatoes.  The best part was the flavorful, texture-rich cornmeal crust. We ate the whole thing in only a couple of days!

Local Box, 08.20.2008

Some old friends and some new ones arrived in my Local Box today!  My joy at seeing two “Caspian Pink” heirloom tomatoes knows no bounds.  It’s just not summer without fresh tomatoes, so I’m glad we get some more summer, yet.  And check out the variety okra!  Any great ideas to feature these unusual varieties?  I can’t wait to enjoy sliced cantaloupe with breakfast tomorrow.  And we’re going to have to get serious about eating some potatoes, sweet potatoes, and kabocha squash!  I’ve been saving up… This bounty might call for some mass roasting.

How are you planning to eat out of your Local Box this week?

Sorrel Soup on Sunday

Sunday evening, Hubby made Sorrel Soup from our Local Box sorrel and the recipe that came with it.  He followed the recipe for the most part, but substituted Central Market Organics vegetable broth for the chicken stock and doubled the cream (woo hoo!).  The result was excellent!  The photo doesn’t quite do justice to how very green this soup was, and its flavor was similarly bright – lemony, almost tart. We forgot to take a picture then, but I did remember to snap a shot of the leftovers in his lunchbox yesterday morning.  (Both the lunchbox and photo were inspired by the awesome Jennifer McCann and her Vegan Lunchbox blog – the first one I ever read regularly back when she launched it three years ago.) For both lunch and dinner, we served up cornbread alongside, and for lunch Hubby also enjoyed pickled okra and sliced bell pepper from our Local Box, as well as a few raw almonds and dried cranberries.

What have you done with your Local Box sorrel?