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How to Eat Your BOX! (Week of 11/12/17)

How to EAT…

Celery Root (Celeriac):

Celery root or celeriac is prized for its distinctive flavor which is somewhere between celery and parsley. Although cooked celery root is excellent in soups, stew, and other hot dishes, it can also be enjoyed raw, especially grated and tossed in salads. Raw celery root has an intense flavor that tends to dominate salads, so pair it with other strongly flavored fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, beets, and apples. Before using celery root, peel and soak briefly in water with a little vinegar or lemon juice to prevent cut surfaces from darkening.

 

Green Onions (Scallions):

Don’t be afraid to use the entire green onion! Green onions, also called scallions, make an excellent garnish to soups, salads, noodle or rice dishes.

STORE: Store green onions in a plastic bag in your crisper for five to seven days. Be sure to keep them away from fruits and veggies that absorb odors easily like mushrooms, corn and apples.

PREP: Rinse your green onions in cold water; trim off roots and the very tops of the greens. Dice into thin or slightly thicker rounds depending on your preference.

 

 

Featured Recipe: Cauliflower & Celery Root Soup

Makes 8 servings

 

INGREDIENTS

 

1 tablespoon olive oil

8 cups cauliflower florets with stems chopped into ½-inch pieces (1 large head)

4 cups chopped celery root (½-inch pieces), about 1 medium root

2 large carrots, peeled and diced into ½-inch pieces

1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced, or 1 red onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

8 cups organic vegetable or chicken broth

¼ teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste

½ teaspoon black pepper, or to taste

½ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ teaspoon ground green cardamom

½ teaspoon red pepper flakes

1 can (13.5 ounces) coconut milk

 

For Garnish: Breadfarm bread cubes (optional), peppers, finely chopped green onion or chives, lime wedges

 

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

2. Chop cauliflower, celery root, carrots, green onion and garlic. Place a heavy bottomed sauce pan on medium heat. Drizzle in olive oil. When shimmering, add onions, and carrots. Cook for about 3 minutes, add garlic, and cook another 2 minutes, stirring often to keep garlic from burning. Toss in the cauliflower and celery root. Pour in broth; add your spices, and stir well. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 25 to 30 minutes or until vegetables are fork tender.

 

3. Stir in the coconut milk. (Note: if you like your soups more brothy, you may opt to skip this step which makes the soup thicker and more like a chowder.) Remove half of the vegetables from pot. Use an immersion blender to puree the remaining soup in the pot. Alternately, add remaining soup to a blender, in batches, and blend until smooth. Return blended soup to pot along with reserved vegetables and stir well to combine. Taste soup for seasoning, adding more salt or pepper to taste. Divide soup between 8 large soup bowls. Top with croutons and garnish with peppers and onions. Squeeze a bit of lime juice over the bowls, to taste.

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How To Eat Your BOX! (Week of 1/15/17)

Cucumber:

Apart from cucumber salad, cucumbers make a fun and refreshing topping to sandwiches! Whether it’s the traditional open faced cucumber and cream cheese with dill that they serve at showers, diced cucumber with tomato, onions and feta cheese wrapped in a pita bread, or simply sliced cucumber on your average, every day sandwich, I love the added crunch and fresh flavor it adds. Cucumber is also perfect in salsas, grain or pasta salads, egg salads or simply raw as a finger food. I like eating mine with a spritz of lemon and salt.

Zucchini:

I must admit, I didn’t use to like zucchini, However, what I’ve come to realize more and more (as about all produce), is that the problem often isn’t what it is, but how it’s cooked. Now I absolutely love zucchini because I’ve discovered ways I like to eat it. Firstly, I enjoy it raw! Who knew? 🙂 It’s great in salads or as a finger food with dip. I also like adding it to stir fry or making zucchini patties (which are amazing!). The key for me was to shred or “noodle” my zucchini when I cooked it. Chopping it into chunks always yielded the same mushy texture that just didn’t suit me. Whereas if I shredded it, suddenly it was a whole new experience! Make sure not to cook it too long or it might turn to mush. I always add it last to my stir fry or as the noodle to my “spaghetti”. It only needs to cook for about a minute or so. Try experimenting with zucchini this week to find how you like it best!

Cauliflower:

There are so many ways to use this vegetable that I don’t even know where to start. It can be chopped up and added to salad or soup, roasted in the oven, tossed in a stir fry, boiled and pureed as a stand-in for mashed potatoes or to make a creamy soup, baked into a pizza crust as a flourless alternative, or simply eaten raw. The options are endless! You don’t even have to cut it up. Try baking it whole by simply cutting off the leaves and stem so it can sit upright, baste in olive oil, salt and spices of your choice, and bake on a cookie sheet or cast iron skillet at 450°F. for about 45-60 minutes or until a knife can be inserted easily. Because of its mild flavor, cauliflower goes well in spicy dishes or curries as it soaks up all the other flavors. Healthy cauliflower recipes.

Brussels Sprouts:

The first time I ever tasted caramelized Brussels sprouts I was hooked! Below, I show you how I like to roast them in the oven, but they also caramelize well when sautéed!

Preheat oven to 425°F. Trim off the bottoms of the Brussels sprouts (don’t take off too much or they fall apart) and outer leaves and slice lengthwise. Toss with olive oil (about a tablespoon), salt, pepper, and mix until coated thoroughly. Roast on a baking sheet until tender and caramelized, about 20 minutes. They can be served as is or for a little extra flavor, try drizzling balsamic vinegar or lemon juice on top. Mix together and add salt to taste.

Celeriac:

Celery root or celeriac is prized for its distinctive flavor which is somewhere between celery and parsley. Although cooked celery root is excellent in soups, stew, and other hot dishes, it can also be enjoyed raw, especially grated and tossed in salads. Raw celery root has an intense flavor that tends to dominate salads, so pair it with other strongly flavored fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, beets, and apples. Before using celery root, peel and soak briefly in water with a little vinegar or lemon juice to prevent cut surfaces from darkening.

Recipe for: Mashed Celeriac

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How to Eat Your BOX! (week of 1/1/2017)

Baby Broccolini:

Broccolini is not a form of baby broccoli but actually a hybrid between broccoli and Chinese kale. It can be cooked much the same way as regular broccoli but is more tender and takes less maintenance. Simply cut off the ends (I like to take a good inch or two because the ends can be tough and chewy), and either bake in the oven or toss in a stir fry. Try sautéing along with chopped garlic in a about a tablespoon of olive oil. Like other vegetables, these are often blanched first, before adding to the frying pan. Do this by adding to boiling water and simmering for about two minute then drain and transfer to a bowl of ice water. Return your pan to the stove and sautee the garlic, then add the broccolini back in to reheat. To bake, toss in olive oil and spread evenly on a baking sheet. Bake at 425°F for 10-15 minutes until tender.

Kiwi:

Kiwi is most commonly eaten as is by cutting in half and spooning out the inside, but it can also make a great addition to breakfast food or dessert. They can be used in smoothies (try with bananas, yogurt and avocado), as a topping for granola and yogurt, or with dessert (I like topping meringue with a little whip and a slice of kiwi). Kiwi can also be added to ice water with mint and lemon for a refreshing drink.

Carnival Squash:

Carnival squash is a hybrid between sweet dumpling and acorn squash. Try roasting your halved carnival squash seasoned with a little butter and brown sugar. It tastes nutty and sweeter than butternut squash but not as dry in texture as kabocha squash. Carnival squash is at its best when roasted which really brings out its flavors, but it can also be steamed or pureed. The seeds can be roasted and eaten just like with other winter squashes. I like its small compact size, which makes it easy to cut through and is great for serving one or two people. They are also great to throw into stews, curries, soups, or even veggie chilis. Use them in any recipe calling for butternut or acorn squash.

Recipe: Carnival Squash with Apples and Thyme

Celeriac:

Celery root or celeriac is prized for it’s distinctive flavor which is somewhere between celery and parsley. Although cooked celery root is excellent in soups, stew, and other hot dishes, it can also be enjoyed raw, especially grated and tossed in salads. Raw celery root has an intense flavor that tends to dominate salads, so pair it with other strongly flavored fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, beets, and apples. Before using celery root, peel and soak briefly in water with a little vinegar or lemon juice to prevent cut surfaces from darkening.

Recipe: Mashed Celeriac

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Celeriac and Apple Soup

INGREDIENTS

1 Tbs. olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large celeriac (roughly 700g), peeled and chopped into 1″ cubes
1 large potato (roughly 350g), peeled and chopped into 1″ cubes
1.5 litres vegetable stock
2 large dessert apples, cored, peeled and chopped into 1″ cubes
salt and pepper, to taste
up  to 3 Tbs. lemon juice (optional)
cream, buttermilk or olive oil (to serve)
 
PREPARATION
1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan and add the onion. Cook for 5-8 minutes over medium heat, until soft and translucent.
 
2. Add the celeriac and potato and stir until well coated; cook for another minute or two. Pour in the stock and bring to a boil, then turn down and simmer the mixture for 20-25 minutes, until both celeriac and potato are tender.
 
3. Add the apple to the soup and cook for a further 5 minutes, until the apple has softened. Remove soup from heat and purée using an immersion blender. Taste, and add salt and pepper as needed. If your apples were very sweet, you may want to add some or all of the lemon juice, as well. Serve hot, drizzled with cream, buttermilk or olive oil.
 
Recipe and image from: http://www.kitchenist.com/cooking/soup/match-made-celeriac-and-apple-soup/2073
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Eating like it’s summer in the winter

There’s nothing like biting into a crisp, freshly picked sugar snap pea while basking in the summer sun. Or having a sweet tomato collapse and fall victim to your teeth as they sink into its tender red flesh.

Commonly in the winter we find ourselves a slave to the stove, constantly roasting, braising, steaming or sautéing. I am guilty of this, as I find an immense amount of pleasure from the sweet and caramel tastes that emerge from roasted vegetables. With those rich, roasted flavors a heavy coat of oil, butter and sometimes cream (vegetables braised in cream are out of this world) comes with it. And while that is fine and mighty delicious, night after night of those hefty side dishes will have you wearing a bulky winter coat – and I’m not talking about the kind you button up.

I became awakened to the joys of eating raw vegetables in the winter while working as a pastry chef for a catering company. The chef created a salad of finely shredded raw fennel, leeks, celeriac (celery root) and apples, simply dressed in olive oil, a splash of vinegar, and salt. I found myself nibbling at that salad when I should have been working on my desserts. I clung to the fresh flavors and simplicity as if it were a friend I hadn’t seen in months. The subtle sweetness of the vegetables and soft flavors of bitter, heat and licorice danced in my head. I was transformed in my winter eating.

While the health benefits are only an added bonus to the delicious tastes of these salads, they are still worth noting, especially since many of us have recently resolved to take better care of our bodies. “Raw vegetables are extremely rich in minerals, vitamins, trace elements, enzymes and natural sugars. All of these are things that your body needs to function properly and the raw veggies will help stabilize and normalize your natural bodily functions. They actually help pretty much ALL of your natural bodily functions operate.” (http://ezinearticles.com/?The-Many-Benefits-Of-Eating-Raw-Vegetables&id=53492)

I’ll never give up my roasted carrots that taste of candy or my cream braised brussel sprouts that leave all cruciferous detesters eating their words and their vegetables. But what I will do, is enjoy the freshness of raw vegetables all year long seeking out different tastes and new ingredients.

by Ashley Rodriquez
Chef, food blogger, and full-time mom. Read more of her writings at www.notwithoutsalt.com

Winter White Salad
Serves 4 as a side salad

Celeriac, also know as celery root, is the unsung hero of this dish. The flavor is similar to that of celery but with more spice and none of the obnoxious strings. It crunches like a carrot and yields an aromatic fragrance that will leave you wondering why you’ve never taken note of it before. You’ll have to get beyond the warty and hard to peel exterior but once you do you will be rewarded with a unique flavor and a crisp crunch that we so long for in the cold Winter months ahead.

1 apple – I used a tart Pink Lady and loved the flavor it added.
1 Fennel bulb
about 1/4 of Celeriac, peeled
1 small Leek

Using a Mandolin with the matchstick blade carefully slice the apple, fennel and Celeriac. Each item should yield about 1 1/2 – 2 cups once cut. You can play with the quantity of each depending on your flavor preference. Keep all the sliced produce in a bowl of cold water with a touch of lemon juice to keep them from browning. When ready to dress the salad make sure you completely drain the matchsticks. Thinly slice just the white part of the leek. Separate the rings. Make the dressing.

For full recipe please visit: http://notwithoutsalt.com/2009/11/05/winter-white-salad/