Tag Archives: local

Romaine Lettuce Wraps with Turmeric Eggs

With the farmers market in full swing I develop new recipes using what is in season (or what on hand in the refrigerator and the garden).
1/2 onion; chopped
2 Tablespoons canola oil
1/3 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon turmeric
1/8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
3 eggs; beaten
4-6 romaine lettuce leaves (depending on the size)
4-6 slices of Jarlsberg (or your choice) cheese
optional slice of “German Bread” toasted and buttered

Preheat a medium sized pan over medium-low heat. Add oil, onion and sprinkle with the salt. Cover and allow to simmer for 2 minutes. Meanwhile, rinse and pat dry the lettuce leaves. Add the turmeric and black pepper, stir, cover and simmer an additional 2 minutes. Meanwhile, place a slice of cheese on the center of each leaf. Add the beaten eggs to the spiced onions and stir occasionally while cooking as you would for scrambled eggs (stir the eggs as they begin to solidify; continue to stir occasionally so the eggs cook/solidify; once there is no more raw egg they are done). Spoon the egg mixture on top of the cheese lined lettuce leaves, fold the leaf around the filling, lift, bite and enjoy.


Meze Inspired Lunch

MENU (clockwise starting at 9 o’clock)
Chili and Lime Broiled Shrimp
“Zucchinoush” (zucchini dip inspired by Baba Ganoush)
Massaged Kale and Carrot Salad
Labneh (yogurt cheese)
Quinoa Tabouli
Olive Salad
Dolmas (stuffed grape leaves)
Fresh Garden Salad Greens
Whole Wheat Pitas
Feta Cheese

Start the night before straining the yogurt for the labneh, soaking chickpeas for the hummus and taking the shrimp out of the freezer. First thing in the morning drain the chickpeas, rinse and cook till tender (2- 2 1/2 hours); cook quinoa; check the yogurt, pour off whey (this can be saved in a jar to cook with) and return to the refrigerator. Prepare the cold dishes and let them chill in the refrigerator.

DSC_0046Chili and Lime Broiled Shrimp
2 lbs shrimp; defrosted, peeled and rinsed
1/2 bunch cilantro; chopped
juice of 1 lime
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon chili pepper paste
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cumin

Place shrimp and cilantro in a bowl. Mix remaining ingredients in a small bowl, pour over shrimp and cilantro, mix and spread onto a baking sheet. (or place in a bowl in the refrigerator until ready to broil) Place under broiler for 10 minutes, check to be sure the shrimp is done and some edges start to crisp, remove and serve hot or cold.

“Zucchinoush” (zucchini dip inspired by Baba Ganoush)
2 medium zucchini
2 cloves garlic; crushed
2 Tablespoons tahini
2 Tablespoons fresh pressed lemon juice
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cumin

Preheat oven to 375. Cut ends off of zucchini, slice in half lengthwise and place on a olive oiled baking sheet. Bake for 30-40 minutes until the zucchini is soft to the touch and just starting to brown on the edges. Blend together with remaining ingredients until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

DSC_0037Massaged Kale and Carrot Salad
1 bunch kale (purple used but any will work)
2 carrots; shredded
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
pinch fresh ground black pepper
2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup pine nuts (optional)
1/4 cup raisins (optional)

Wash kale, remove stems, tear into bite-sized pieces, massage (just squish in your hands or rub between palms) and place into glass or ceramic bowl. Add remaining ingredients, stir and refrigerate until ready to serve.

DSC_0045Labneh (yogurt cheese)
1/2 cups plain yogurt (or greek yogurt)
sea salt to garnish
black pepper to garnish
smoked paprika to garnish
extra virgin olive oil to garnish

You will need; cheesecloth, wire mesh sieve, plain yogurt and bowl. I make the labneh the night before or first thing in the morning depending on how thick I am making the cheese.
DSC_0113DSC_0114Line a wire mesh sieve with folded cheesecloth so it does not flow over the edge (it will eventually drip and create a mess). Place the lined sieve over a bowl. Pour yogurt into lined sieve, cover lightly and refrigerate overnight. The longer the yogurt drains the more solidified the “cheese”.


Lift the “cheese” by holding the corners of the cheesecloth and gently squeeze out any excess whey. Turn out onto a plate or into a bowl. Serve as is or drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with herbs, salt and pepper. Reserve the liquid for making chapattis, Indian flat bread.

1 cup dried chick peas; soaked over night, rinsed and boiled till soft (or you can use 2 1/2 cups canned chickpeas)
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup water
1-4 cloves (to taste) garlic; pressed
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
if necessary- add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time for consistency
Traditional hummus uses tahini but my family prefers it without. If you like the traditional style add 2-4 Tablespoons tahini.

Place all ingredients into a food processor or blender and process until smooth and creamy. At this point you will see if more water is needed for consistency. Add more water one tablespoon  at a time as you process. Taste and add more salt if needed. To add a kick you can add some cayenne pepper. Serve hummus with vegetables and/or crackers for dipping (gluten intolerant or celiac will find that tortilla chips dipped in hummus is delicious). To make this into a light summer meal add cheese and fruit.

Quinoa Tabouli
3/4 cup quinoa
2 clove garlic; crushed
1/4 cup fresh pressed lemon juice
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
pinch fresh ground black pepper
1 tomato; chopped
1 cucumber; chopped
large handful parsley; chopped
1/4 cup red onion; minced OR 1/4 cup scallions; diced

Cook quinoa- bring 3/4 cup quinoa and 1 1/2 cups water to a boil, reduce heat and simmer till water is absorbed (about 20 minutes), place into a glass or ceramic bowl/casserole dish and add the garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper, stir, cover and set aside to marinate at least 1 hour. Add the remaining ingredients just before serving and stir to combine.

DSC_0038Olive Salad
2 Tablespoons minced onion (red pictured but white is fine)
1/4 cup Kalamata olives; sliced
1/4 cup Manzanilla olives with pimiento; sliced
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Mix ingredients together and refrigerate till ready to serve.

Dolmas (stuffed grape leaves) bought from store (yes, I cheated)

Fresh Garden Salad Greens

Whole Wheat Pitas bought from store (yes, I cheated some more)

Feta Cheese

Sauted Asian Greens, Snap Peas and Garlic Scapes

DSC_0012At the Farmers’ Market of Plainville I purchased Asian Greens from Dinebergs Farm. When I looked up “Asian Greens” on line I found many varieties of greens but after some digging I believe I purchased Purple Mizuna.DSC_0005

I picked the only items that were ready out of my garden; garlic scapes and snap peas which is how this recipe came to be. Cooking locally and seasonally is wonderful, everything is fresh and, in my mind, “as it should be” if we are trying to live as close to nature as possible.

1 cup brown rice; soaked, rinsed and cooked with 1 3/4 cup water till all the water is absorbed

1 Tablespoon canola oil (I use a gmo free product; either Trader Joe’s or Spectrum)
1 teaspoon sesame oil (found in the international section of a grocery store or at Asian markets)
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 Tablespoon water
1/2-1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
pinch ground cumin
pinch ground coriander

DSC_00071 bunch Purple Mizuna (or other Asian Green); washed, leaves cut to1″ and stems to 1/4-1/2″ sections
4 garlic scapes; the tender part of the stems sliced thin
2 cups snap (or sugar) peas; washed and “strings” removed
1 onion; halved and sliced thinDSC_0004

1 Tablespoon canola oil.

Cook the brown rice. (Refer to an early post, College Kitchen Questions.)
In the meantime mix together the oils, soy sauce, water and spices for the sauce in a small bowl.
Preheat a large heavy bottomed pan (I use a cast iron skillet that has a lid) over medium high heat.
Prepare the vegetables, pour 1 Tablespoon canola oil into the hot pan, add the onions and stir occasionally so they do not burn, sautéing for 2 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients, stir, pour the sauce over top, reduce heat to medium and cover. Saute and stir occasionally for 2 minutes or until the greens (which are also purple) have wilted.
Serve over rice.

Vegan Chili con Corn

You may have noticed that much of the entries are tomato based, that is because we have an abundance of tomatoes coming out of the garden. I froze a batch of this chili to enjoy on a cold winter evening.
1 cup dried small red beans; soaked for 8 hours, rinsed and drained
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, minced
2 celery stalks; minced
2 Italian peppers; chopped
1 teaspoon salt
4 cloves garlic; crushed
1 Tablespoon paprika
1 Tablespoon cumin
1 Tablespoon oregano
2 teaspoons coriander
1 teaspoon cayenne (this is spicy; if you don’t care for spicy food use 1/4 teaspoon and serve with tabasco or red pepper flakes for those that want to spice it up)
6-8 cups fresh (from the garden or farm stand is best) tomatoes; coarsely chopped
1 cup water

Preheat a wide bottom cook pot on medium heat. Add oil, onion, celery, peppers and salt. Saute about 5 minutes until the vegetables soften. Add the garlic, paprika, cumin, oregano, coriander and cayenne; stirring to combine well. Add the tomatoes, bring to a boil and simmer with lid on about 20 minutes until the tomatoes are well cooked and breaking up. Add the beans and water, stir, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 2 hours with lid on. Test that the beans are soft (I just fish one out with a fork and take a bite). Once soft the chili is done unless it is too soupy for your taste, then simply remove the lid and simmer to reduce the amount of liquid (I only needed to reduce for 15 minutes but it will depend on the tomatoes).

DSC_0018 DSC_0019
My large cook pot was busy with the chili so I microwaved the corn on the cob- super easy! Shuck the corn, place in a microwavable container with sides, add a couple tablespoons of water and put a lid on. I microwaved 6 corn on the cobs on high for 5 minutes to produce crunchy sweet corn (of course it helps that it came fresh from the local organic farm). Look at this interesting top of the corn!

Broiled Marinara Shrimp, Creamy Kale and Carrot Salad and Corn on the Cob



A meal in honor of the latest trip to the local farmers’ market. All organic and locally grown.

Broiled Marinara Shrimp
2 lbs raw extra large shrimp; pealed and deveined
1/2 cup marinara sauce *
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Toss shrimp with marinara sauce. Set aside in the refrigerator. When putting on the pot of water for the corn, preheat oven to 375. When the corn goes into the pot to cook, turn the oven off and turn the broiler on. Place the shrimp under the broiler for 10 minutes. (Check the shrimp after 6 minutes so they do not overcook; they should just begin to brown and crisp). Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Creamy Kale and Carrot Salad
1 bunch kale; washed, patted dry and stems removed
2 carrots; shredded
1 clove garlic; crushed
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
dash fresh ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup plain yogurt (or you can use sour cream)

Tear the kale into slightly larger than bite size pieces, place in a bowl and massage (this breaks up the cellulose and makes the kale sweeter) by scrunching in your hands. Add the shredded carrot. In a small bowl combine the remaining ingredients and mix well. Add the creamy herb sauce to the kale and carrots and toss until well coated. Store in refrigerator until ready to serve.

Boiled Corn on the Cob
Put a large pot of water (filled to 1/3) on to boil. In the meantime shuck (remove husk, silk and break off the stem end and cut away any damaged corn) the corn. When the water is boiling (remember to put the shrimp under the broiler at this time) put the corn into the water, sprinkle with 1/4-1/2 teaspoon salt, cover and boil for 5 minutes. Remove corn immediately.

*(I had some left over from a quick meal last night)
1 28 oz box (Pomi brand) crushed tomatoes
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1-4 cloves garlic; crushed
1 Tablespoon basil
1/2 Tablespoon oregano
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Combine ingredients.

Sliced Heirloom Tomatoes