Monthly Archives: December 2008

Keeping Warm with Polenta

polentaBaby, it’s cold outside! Without any dinner plans last night and the furnace working hard to keep the house at a mere 62 degrees, I improvised from last week’s Local Box. I brought water to a boil and whisked in polenta, then added diced butternut squash I’d roasted last week. In the meantime, I rinsed last week’s mixed greens and sauteed them in a bit of butter and garlic. When the polenta looked done, I grated in some Grana Padano cheese and stirred in a tablespoon of butter. We scooped the polenta into bowls and topped with the greens, then let the warmth flow all the way down to our bellies.

What are you eating from your Local Box to keep warm?

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Beautiful Borscht

borschtThis picture doesn’t do it justice, so you’ll have to take my word for it: Borscht is really beautiful. And your body thinks so, too – it’s loaded with healthful nutrients. I like to go ahead and roast my Local Box beets as soon as I get them so they’re ready to go. Then, we can whip up a batch of borscht in a snap. There are many different recipes out there. We had good luck with this one recently. It was a great way to use some Local Box onion, carrots, apple, and dill, too!

Report from Fearless Forager, week of 12.15.2008

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

  • lettuce
  • baby spinach
  • daikon/watermelon radishes
  • assorted herbs
  • dino kale
  • navel oranges
  • grapefruit
  • cilantro
  • kale/collard bunches
  • apples

Local Box, 12.10.2008

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The season’s first cabbage – in my kitchen, anyway – is a welcome sight. But will I turn it into slaw or kraut? I’ve been yearning for the tangy, vitamin-C drenched goodness that is sauerkraut here lately, so I may try my hand at making my own. I hear it’s wicked easy… Have you ever made it? Please share your tips, if you have!

Grapefruits, too, are good to see – and conveniently loaded with vitamin C, too. In fact, beets are also great sources of this antioxidant nutrient. Is it a coincidence there’s so much of the magical C to be had locally as we get into the heart of cold and flu season??

I might just turn this week’s apples and those I have leftover from last week into a pie, or perhaps a galette. And those lovely mixed greens? They look like a sautée waiting to happen – perhaps with a little bacon or smoke-dried tomato for added flavor. I’m glad to see avocadoes again, too, as my husband wants to try a crazy avocado pie recipe he found – it’s sweet, with a graham-cracker crust! To me, it sounds just crazy enough that it might be wonderful.

What have you got planned for your Local Box this week?

Fearless Forager’s Kale Chips

kale chips, uncookedkale chips, cooked

This is one of Fearless Forager’s great inventions: a nutrient-packed dark, leafy green transformed into a crispy, can’t-stop snack! To make kale chips yourslef, rinse and spin dry a bunch of kale, then tear it into pieces three or four inches wide. Distribute the pieces in a roasting pan or cookie sheet. Whisk together a dollop of vegtable oil and one of soy sauce in a small bowl, then toss with kale. Spread kale evenly across baking sheet. It will look like a lot before you cook it (above left), but will contract considerably as it bakes (above right)! Bake at 375 degrees until crisp, turning with a spatula after a few minutes. Cool and enjoy!

Local Box 12.03.2008

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This might sound crazy: I am so glad to see more Meyer lemons in this week’s Local Box! We’re totally hooked on maramalade, and I think it’s going to make great holiday gifts. It’s quite a lot of fun to make, too, and not hard at all.  What else this week? More avocadoes are always welcome! This morning, my husband sliced some up with a green tomato that had ripened over an omelette for breakfast, and yesterday I ate half of one sliced up with greens and a vinaigrette for a simple lunch salad. I trimmed the kale right away so that it would better fit in my fridge. It will be so tasty roasted as “kale chips” – more on that later. I think I’ll roast up this week’s and last week’s beets tonight to use as sides all week long. And the baby bok choy? That was a surprise that’s got me thinking about stir-fry.

What have you got planned for your Local Box this week?

Molasses Horseradish Sweet Potato Spears

imgp6630This festive preparation graced our Thanksgiving table, but there’s no reason not to enjoy it any ol’ night of the week – especially with Local Box sweet potatoes to spare. Check out the recipe here… and let us know what you’ve been doing with all those sweet potatoes, yourselves!