Tuesday, September 25, 2012

What is this Vegetable?

We usually get lots of delicious veggies and fruit from our garden.  Usually the normal stash includes a handful of the following: potatoes, squash, tomatoes, pears, peaches, cucumbers, peppers, onions, and sometimes if we're lucky, bread & bagels!

This week it was something different.  A weird green bulb with greens sprouting out from all sides.  I had no idea what it was, but always willing to try new things, I happily took one home.  Luckily my husband with the culinary arts degree could identify this weird piece of produce - Kohlrabi.  (I wish I'd taken a picture of it pre-cooked.  It is weird - google it!)

I used my Kohlrabi in two separate dishes.  One for the bulb, and one for the greens.  For our main dish, I simply combined the bulb with egg noodles and wow, this was good.

Here's what I used:

Kohlrabi Bulb - peeled and shredded -  from our community garden
Egg noodles

Here's what I did:

First I shredded up my kohlrabi bulb using my gator grater!  Make sure you remove the skin, I hear its really tough and bitter.  Next, melt your butter in a big pan.  I used a couple tablespoons.  Once the butter is melted, add your shredded kohlrabi and saute for 10 minutes or so.  You can be cooking your egg noodles while you are sauteing.  Next, add the egg noodles in, and top with pepper and paprika to your liking.  This is really simple, and believe me, it is really good.  Both my kids ate it up!

Our side dish of greens was only a little bit more difficult, but just as delicious.

Here's what I used:

Kohlrabi greens - stems & ribs removed  - from our community garden
Broccoli - one head chopped - from our community garden
Tomatoes - a couple romas, chopped - from our community garden
Anaheim pepper - finely diced - from our community garden
Pine nuts - toasted
Olive Oil - from a local small business
Lemon Juice
Salt & Pepper

Here's What I did:

To chop up my kohlrabi after removing the stems, I rolled the leaves up into little cigars, and then chopped them.  This makes them into nice little ribbons.  A handy trick I learned from my crafty husband.

While you are getting everything else all set up, you can toast your pine nuts on a back burner in a small pan. I usually just put my pan on a very low setting, throw in the nuts and let them toast up.  By the time I'm ready for them, they're pretty much done.

Heat olive oil in a pan and add your garlic & peppers and cook for 5 min or so.  Next, add your broccoli and tomatoes and cook for another 3-5 minutes.  Add your greens saute until wilted.  Toss in your toasted pine nuts and lemon juice and you're done!

Personally, I was amazed at how delicious both these meals turned out.  So much, in fact, that I was pretty disappointed when kohlrabi wasn't available the next week at the garden. Total bummer!

Monday, September 24, 2012

A twist on spaghetti

We eat a lot of spaghetti in our house.  Mostly because we love it, and the kids will eat it.  But also because it is very economical!  We usually do just the standard tomato sauce with a side of garlic bread, but this time we mixed it up a bit.  Also, lucky for us, we get local bread from our community garden. We use this to make garlic or herb bread frequently to go along with our pastas.  YUM! 

What I used:

Whole wheat spaghetti
Diced tomatoes  - from our community garden
Diced roasted red peppers  - from a local small business
Diced mushrooms  
Capers - from a local small business
Diced Kalamata olives  - from a local small business
Olive oil - from a local small business
Lemon Juice

Bread - from a local bakery
Secret Herbs & Spices

Here's what I did:

While I was cooking the spaghetti, I heated up the oil in a big pan and threw in my garlic.  Once fragrant, I put in the mushrooms, and soon after the olives, capers, then peppers then tomatoes.   Once the spaghetti was finished, I tossed it with the veggies and added the lemon juice - and yum!

For the bread: just mix your herbs/garlic with butter, spread on the bread, and toast it up in the oven for 15 minutes or so.  I prefer mine wrapped in foil so its soft.  My husband likes his toasty, so we don't wrap his up.  Either way, its super delicious!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

State Fair

Does food from the state fair count as local?  I'm counting it.  And while I guess it is local, what we ate was very NOT healthy.  (but delicious!)

Last week we visited the Utah State Fair.  While it was a perfectly nice fair - lots of vendors, shows, crafts, etc.  After growing up with the Florida State Fair year after year, the Utah fair seemed kinda rinky-dink.  I guess I didn't consider that Florida's Fair, since it is off-season, has pretty much every fair vendor in the US in attendance.  To give you Floridians and idea, we were pretty much able to walk around the entire Utah fair in about 10 minutes.  Try imagining doing that in Florida...

So I'll start with one of my favorite things to get at the fair - ribbon fries.  A combo of my two favorite forms of potato - french fries and potato chips.  Plus, its fun to watch them slice up the potato right in front of you - yum!

And our family's favorite thing to get at the fair - deep fried oreos!  We were skeptical when we first heard of these back in Florida, but after trying them, we are definitely believers!  We found the one (yes only one) fried oreo vendor in the park, and got ourselves a helping!

These did not disappoint!  But, sadly, we had to leave shortly after this snack because of the rain.  Hopefully we'll make it to Florida sometime for the big event, and to get our fair food fix!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Squash Salad & Macaroni

So I mentioned before that we had a huge Hubbard squash from our community garden.  We already made a pie, and tacos, but believe it or not, we still have quite a bit left! What to do, what to do???

About half of our squash had been cubed up, dusted with pumpkin pie spices and baked.  The portion which was not used for the pie was just sitting in my fridge waiting to be used.  Right next to the squash was some fresh spinach, which gave me the idea for a really yummy salad!

Here's what I used:

Fresh Spinach
Diced Tomatoes - from our community garden
Diced Hubbard Squash - pre-cooked - from our community garden
Prunes (or raisins) - from our community garden
Toasted Pine Nuts
Your favorite dressing (I used organic green goddess)

Here's what I did:

Throw it all in a bowl and eat!

Now, I didn't expect my kids to enjoy a salad, as yummy as it turned out.  So instead, I made them some squash macaroni (no cheese!).

Here's what I used:

Diced Hubbard Squash - pre-cooked - from our community garden
Macaroni elbows
Milk - from a local dairy

Here's what I did:

I used my hand blender to blend the squash and milk until smooth.  Then I basically just mixed it in to the cooked macaroni elbows.  Super easy!  Both my kids ate it up.  I actually called it pumpkin pie macaroni which was quite popular.  While this was not my favorite dish (I'm not a big pumpkin pie fan), like I said, the kids loved it.  So a win-win in my book!


Friday, September 21, 2012


Hmmm...  Looks like I missed a day.  Whoops!  I will blame it on me being sick, which is partially true.  I may also have just been distracted...

So you may all have been wondering what have we been eating for breakfast that's local?  Well, we are very fortunate in that our community garden gets free day-old bagels from a local bakery.  And my favorite part is the Asiago Cheese bagels!  Oh Yum!

One of my favorite things to do with this is put sliced cucumbers and tomatoes on it in sandwich form.  I usually also add cream cheese, but heck, I was out of it this time.  It was just as delicious without, and that made this a 100% local dish.

Add a side of fresh locally grown watermelon, and boy is that ever a yummy treat!