Author Archives: Kathryn

Moving On Up!

Please update your RSS settings and bookmarks– our blog has fancy new digs! We’ve moved the Local Box blog and content to http://greenling.com/blog. The RSS for the new blog is: http://feeds.feedburner.com/Eatingoutofthelocalbox.

We’re still posting weekly Local Box meal plans, plus original recipes, cooking tips, and other cool stuff. Thanks for making the big move with us!

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Local Box Meal Plan, January 23-27

Have you ever seen the musical Into the Woods? It’s a terrific show, and I love it for many reasons. However, my favorite moment of the whole thing is when the witch (of Rapunzel fame) raps about vegetables.

Any time there are several green item in the Local Box, I am reminded of this scene and I can’t help but smile. This clip shows the greens rap, but it’s not nearly as good as the version of the musical with Bernadette Peters in the role. (The rap portion of the song starts around :54, below.)

Isn’t it funny? Before I started receiving the Local Box, I had never heard of half the vegetables listed in that song. Now, I’ve cooked nearly all of them! That witch would be jealous!

Here’s what I’m making with all the greens in the Local Box this week:

Meal one: Apple Cider Braised Greens, Sweet Potato Hash, sliced avocado on the side. Go ahead and substitute the radish or turnip greens from your box for the swiss chard in that greens recipe. The greens taste wonderful, and the radishes or turnips will keep longer if you cut away the greens and store them separately.

Meal two: Broccoli, Ginger and Grapefruit Pork Stir-fry. If you think you don’t like grapefruit, you owe it to yourself to try it in a stir-fry with ginger. I have made this recipe several times, substituting slices of drained, extra-firm tofu in place of the pork, and it’s one of my favorite grapefruit vehicles. Don’t skip the fresh ginger– it makes the recipe sing!

Meal three: Tuna Pasta Salad with Dill, orange slices on the side. This is one of my favorite recipes from childhood, and it tastes wonderful if you substitute fresh dill for dried, and add 1/2 cup grated radishes to the recipe. I will garnish the salad with sliced green onions, too.

Local Box Meal Plan, January 16-20

It’s hard to believe we’re getting this Local Box in the middle of winter! I suppose cauliflower, kale, and butternut squash are winter staples, but the rest of the box feels like a big breath of spring.
The cauliflower in this week’s box weighs between 2-4 lbs, plenty for a main dish for four people, or two main dishes for two people. I’m going to use it twice in this week’s menu, and if there is extra, I am going to make Jote’s recipe for sriracha cauliflower as a snack.
Here’s what’s coming in the Local Box:

  • Daikon Bunch with Greens – My Father’s Farm
  • Cauliflower – Hillside Farms
  • Butternut Squash – Gundermann Acres
  • Lime – G&S Groves
  • Oranges – G&S Groves
  • Rutabaga Bunch – Just Peachy Farms
  • Kale – Gundermann Acres
  • Avocados – G&S Groves
  • Green Leaf OR Red Leaf OR Bibb Lettuce – Gundermann Acres
  • Tomatoes – Walnut Creek Organics

Here’s what I’m cooking with the bounty:

Meal one: Lettuce, orange and pecan salad, low carb cauliflower leek soup. Watch out for that soup recipe– it easily serves 12 people! Use the recipe calculator function on the Allrecipes website to scale down the portions for your family. Also, since there haven’t been leeks in the Local Box for weeks now, I will substitute a finely chopped yellow onion for the leeks in that recipe.

Meal two: Cauliflower tomato curry with pita bread and avocado hummus. That avocado hummus tastes great if you use lime juice instead of lemon. When you chill the hummus in the fridge, make sure to put a layer of plastic wrap directly on top of the avocado mixture to help keep it from turning brown.

Meal three: Chicken and Rutabaga Stew. I am going to live adventurously and add peeled, chopped daikon radish to this stew. Daikon cooks very much like turnip and other root vegetables, so I think it will fit right in here. This stew tastes great served over bulgar wheat, couscous, or brown rice.

Meal four: We’re doing breakfast for dinner this night, with butternut squash breakfast bowls. Just looking at the pictures of that breakfast bowl makes me crave poached eggs and kale together. YUM!  Roasting the squash for that recipe will take some time, so you can do that step ahead of time if you wish: just peel and dice the squash and bake it at 350 for 30-40 minutes until it is tender. Store it in the fridge until you’re ready to make dinner.

Creamy Avocado Pasta

Sometimes I really struggle to stay meatless on Mondays if I’m craving a nice creamy pasta dish for dinner. It doesn’t happen often, but when the hunger for rich food strikes, the avocado is my secret, meatless weapon against dairy-meat-munchies!

The avocado in this creamy pasta recipe works as a binder, creating a rich, smooth dressing with flecks of bitter greens and zesty citrus notes. You’ll notice that there’s no Parmesan cheese in this dish. Most varieties of that cheese are made with animal rennet– not good for Meatless Monday! I use almonds, nutritional yeast, and plenty of salt in my recipe to replace the “oomph” that Parmesan might add.

Creamy Avocado Pasta (serves 2)

1/2 pound vegan pasta
1 medium avocado
1 1/2 cups spinach, arugula, or romaine lettuce
1/2 cup basil leaves
1 tablespoon fresh lemon or lime juice, plus extra for seasoning
1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup almond
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm, about 8-10 minutes. Reserve 1 cup of cooking liquid, and drain.

Meanwhile, scoop out the flesh of the avocado and place in a food processor. Add the greens, basil, citrus juice, garlic, salt, pepper, almond, and nutritional yeast. Blend until smooth.

Pour the pesto over the pasta in a serving dish. Toss to coat the pasta with sauce, adding a little pasta water as necessary to loosen the sauce. Taste the finished pasta and season to taste with lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Serve immediately.

This pasta is best served on the same day it is prepared, since the avocado will oxidize and turn the sauce an unsightly brown color after a while.

 

Greenling is Expanding!

We'll be sourcing local items from DFW-area farms, like The Farm at Paul Quinn College.

After growing the local food system in Austin for 6 years, Greenling is going to help our friends up north, too!

We’re setting up shop in DFW and couldn’t be more excited. We’re making friends with all the North Texas local and sustainable producers we can find, and later this month will start delivering their local goodness all over the DFW Metroplex.

We need your help spreading the word to your family and friends in DFW- and we’ll make it worth your while! We’re giving away an iPad2 with a foodie spin – it’s pre-loaded with all kinds of fun food and sustainability apps.

It’s super easy  to enter- everyone who likes our Greenling DFW page on Facebook is entered, plus anyone who enters their zip code and joins our DFW email list gets an extra entry. Finally, you get yet another entry for everyone who joins our email list from your referral! How cool is that?

Mashed Rutabagas

Rutabagas are coming! Rutabagas are coming! We’re expecting a big shipment of these nutritious root vegetables from Just Peachy Farms in Palestine, Texas next week.

Rutabagas are in the brassica family of vegetables, along with turnips, cabbage, kale, and Brussels sprouts.  They’re one of our favorite winter items, since they cook up well in recipes with potatoes, carrots, beef and other hearty fare.

Just Peachy’s rutabagas are small and tender, with a mild flavor. They are still in the ground as we speak, and farmer Billy Moore will be harvesting them for our Local Box over the weekend. In preparation for the harvest, Billy shared with us one of his favorite rutabaga recipes:

Mashed Rutabagas and Onions (serves 4-6)
4-6 cups peeled, diced rutabaga
1 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Cook rutabaga and onion in a small amount of boiling salted water until tender. Drain and mash; add butter, salt, and pepper. Mash rutabaga and onions well.

Lettuce Wrap Up 2011

In light of our exciting news that Greenling is expanding to Dallas, we thought we’d do some veggie math and evaluate how the past year in Central Texas looked for local food.

Despite a devastating historical drought, our hard-working local farmers thankfully persevered and still managed to dish out thousands of pounds of local goodness for all of us to enjoy. Can we get a woop woop for this amazing group of farmers?

Without further ado, ‘lettuce’ wrap-up 2011:

  • 20,369 Local Boxes were delivered- that’s about 142,583 lbs of local produce on Central Texas tables this year.
  • In addition, we delivered about 20,000 lbs of local produce in addition to what was in the Local Box
  • 54 different local farms provided the local goodness we delivered this year

Animal Farm in Central Texas

  • We estimate that because all of our local growers use sustainable methods, they saved over 150,000 pounds of pesticides NOT used on our food this year!
  • Since you ‘lettuce’ deliver your groceries in our fuel-efficient & sustainably routed trucks, 9,735 gallons of gas were saved on trips to the store.
  • Hundreds of thousands of ladybugs fed through organic pest control methods.
  • 13,800 meals made ridiculously easy and with all local and organic ingredients from our recipe kits.

Our awesome Prep Kitchen Team!

  • Countless food puns brainstormed at Greenling headquarters (only the best ones make it public, you know)

It was a great year and we know 2012 will be even better for local food. Thanks from the bottom of our artichoke hearts for all of your support!