Tag Archives: Vegetarian

Carrot Ginger Slaw

Carrot Ginger Slaw

It’s slaw season people.  The weather in New England has been hovering around the 80 degree mark for a week or so now (give or take a few dips into the 60’s and 70’s) and I am ready for strawberries, fresh vegetables,  and cold salads. 

Shaved Carrots

We definitely have an affinity for cold salads in our house.   We devour heads of lettuce in record time, broccoli salad makes a regular appearance at our dinner table, and I never turn down a cold noodle dish.  However, the nice weather is young, which means that things like lettuce and broccoli are still in short supply.  Luckily, we still have carrots.  Carrots that have been sitting around since the winter, concentrating all of that delicious sugar.  These bright orange beauties make a lovely cold salad.  Punched up with some ginger, curry powder, and raisins, carrots are great for when you don’t have any other veggies around or for when you just want something a little different.

Simple list of ingredients

Ginger Carrot Slaw

Adapted generously from Alton Brown

Ingredients:

1/2 lb carrots (about 4 medium), washed and peeled

2 tbls mayonnaise

1/2 tsp curry powder

1 tsp minced garlic

1 tsp grated fresh ginger

1/4 cup raisins

pinch of celery seed (optional)

chives or finely chopped green onions for garnish

To Make:

Using a vegetable peeler, shave long strips* of the carrots into a medium bowl.  In a small bowl, stir together the mayonnaise, curry powder, garlic, ginger, and celery seed.  Gently toss the carrot strips with the dressing until well coated.  Stir in the raisins and garnish with chives. 

To Serve:

Serve cold or room temperature.  The carrots are pretty hardy and can stand up to being dressed and refrigerated for a few hours without going soggy.  Serves 2-4 as a side dish.  Recipe is easily doubled (or more) for a larger crowd.

* Using the peeler to shave the carrot creates a lovely texture and look to the salad.  However, it is kind of a pain in the behind.  If you are pressed for time, grate the carrots using the largest holes on your box grater or food processor disk.  You could also julienne them using a mandoline if you are so inclined.

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Filed under Gluten-Free, Recipes, Side Dish, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Beet and Goat Cheese Salad

Beet and Goat Cheese Salad

Is one of your New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier?  If so, then this is the recipe for you.  This beet salad has it all.  It is light and healthy.  It brings a hefty dose of color to the otherwise gray winter landscape (can you tell we haven’t seen the sun in days?).  Most importantly, this salad is delicious.  Even my 3 year old eats it with gusto.

Delicious dressing

Don’t like beets you say?  I am willing to bet that’s because you have only eaten those nasty canned ones.  You know the ones I mean, they are smushy and smelly and taste vaguely of tin.  Of course you don’t like those… you have better taste than that. 

Salad ingredients

Fresh beets, however, are a revelation, especially when they are roasted.  They get soft and sweet and stain everything they touch that beautiful  rich purple color.  So, pick up some beets from a local farm and try this recipe.  Then, if you tell me that you still don’t like beets, I guess I can respect that.

Roasted beets

Beet and Goat Cheese Salad

Adapted from the Produce Bible

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 tablespoon capers, chopped

5 small to medium sized beets (1 lb 2.25 oz/516g), feel free to use classic purple beets or any of the cool heirloom varieties that are often available these days.  This salad is especially pretty when you mix purple and gold beets.

~2.5 oz/68 grams crumbled goat cheese

To Make:

Make the dressing first so the flavors can marry.  In a container with a tight fitting lid (good Tupperware or canning jars work well), combine the red wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, capers, and smashed garlic clove.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Shake until all the ingredients are integrated.  Set aside at room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 400F.  Scrub the beets well, trimming off the tops and the long tap root.  Wrap each beet in aluminum foil and place on a baking sheet.  Roast beets in the oven until they are tender when pierced with a knife, about an hour.

Remove the beets from oven and unwrap.  Cut each beet in half and let sit until cool enough to handle.  Using a clean tea towel or a paper towel, rub the skins off of the beets.  Chop the beets into 1/2 inch pieces and place in your serving bowl. 

Remove and discard the crushed garlic from the dressing.  Toss the warm beets with the dressing.  Refrigerate the beets until chilled, at least 30 minutes.  Once cool, fold in the crumbled goat cheese. 

To Serve:

Serve either chilled or at room temperature.  If you are in a hurry or don’t have time to chill the beets, you can eat the salad warm.  The goat cheese will melt into the beets, turning the whole thing a light pink color.  It doesn’t look as pretty but it still tastes darn good.  Serves 4 as a side dish.

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Filed under Recipes, Side Dish, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Marsala Roasted Root Vegetables

Marsala Roasted Root Vegetables

We are up to our eyeballs in root vegetables.  We picked up the third and final installment of our Shared Harvest CSA yesterday and our fridges are full of parsnips, carrots, turnips, and celeriac while our basement closet is stocked with white and sweet potatoes.  Admittedly, we tend to get a little complacent about preparing our roots.  Our standard approach is to wash/peel/chop whichever vegetables we have handy, toss them with olive oil and salt, and roast them on a cookie sheet until they are tender enough to eat.  While this is certainly a tasty and easy approach, it can get monotonous when you use the same preparation technique over and over.

Locally grown root vegetables

However, there is a real appeal to cooking these vegetables this way.  The high heat of the oven caramelizes the sugars that most root vegetables are full of and softens the bite of strong vegetables like parsnips.  Plus, it is easy to clean and chop the vegetables while the kids are napping, then simply toss them into the oven about an hour before dinner.  Vegetables are on the table and there was no complicated or labor intensive prep.

Marsala wine

In the name of maintaining the delicious simplicity of roasting, we decided to try this recipe for Marsala wine roasted root vegetables.  The addition of butter, thyme, sage, and Marsala wine adds a welcome complexity to the flavor of the roots.  The mix of sweet carrots and potatoes, sharp parsnips, and earthy turnips creates a nice balance to the dish.  Serve it alongside roasted pork or chicken for a lovely winter meal.

Herbed vegetables ready to roast

Marsala Roasted Root Vegetables

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Seasonal Favorites

Ingredients:

1/2 lb carrots, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks

1/2 lb parsnips, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks

1/2 lb turnips, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks

1/2 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into bite-sized chunks

1 tbls butter

1 tlbs extra-virgin olive oil

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried sage

1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/2 cup Marsala wine

2 tbls chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

To Make:

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Bring a large pot three-fourths full of salted water to a boil.  Add the carrots, parsnips, and turnips and simmer until the vegetables give slightly when pierced with a fork, about 4 minutes.  Drain well.

Place all the vegetables in a large roasting pan that has been lined with aluminum foil (for the sake of easy clean up).  In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter.  Add the olive oil, thyme, sage, and nutmeg and stir to mix well.  Drizzle butter mixture over the vegetables and toss to coat evenly.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Pour the Marsala wine into the bottom of the pan.  Cover tightly with aluminum foil.

Roast for 40 minutes.  Remove the foil, toss the vegetables, and continue to roast, uncovered, until the Marsala evaporates and the vegetables can be easily pierced with a knife, 10-20 minutes more.  Remove vegetables to a platter and sprinkle with the chopped parsley.

To Serve:

Serve immediately.  Serves 4 as a side dish.

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Filed under CSA Talk, Dinner, Recipes, Side Dish, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Winter Squash Lasagna

Winter Squash Lasagna

 When we blog, we post recipes that we make that are yummy.  Obviously, we don’t post everything we make, we look for dishes that have something interesting or special about them.  This dish is very, very special.  After dinner tonight, we both agreed that this twist on the classic lasagna is one of the most delicious things we have made in quite a while.

Squash ready for roasting

We got the idea for this dish while browsing through one of our Thanksgiving-themed cookbooks.  The author shared a recipe for a pumpkin and sage lasagna that sounded tasty, but was pretty fussy and complicated.  It called for frying sage leaves and for thickly slicing a seeded and peeled pumpkin and sauteing it before making the lasagna.  With two small children in the house, we don’t really have time for that kind of work.

Mashed squash and ricotta

So we decided to go rogue with the recipe and make it our way.  Our way includes a roasted winter squash whose flesh is folded with whole milk ricotta and flavored with dried sage.  Things get simplified with no-bake lasagna noodles.  It also adds mozzarella cheese to the mix and tops the whole dish with a creamy bechamel sauce that is flavored with bay, thyme, parsley, and black pepper.  Once baked, the lasagna is rich and creamy with balanced sweetness from the squash and savory from the cheeses and herbs. 

Construction

Middle layers

         

Ready for the oven

Fresh out of the oven

         

 

 

 We recommend that you head immediately to your nearest market and purchase one of the many delicious in-season winter squashes currently available and make this dish tonight.  I think I might have to go look for leftovers.

Winter Squash Lasagna

Ingredients:

2lbs winter squash such as pumpkin or butternut (do not use spaghetti squash), cut in half and seeded

1 lb ricotta cheese

2 tsp dried sage

2 tsp kosher salt

3 cups milk

1 bay leaf

1 1/2 tsp dried thyme

1 1/2 tsp dried parsley

6 whole peppercorns

3 tbls butter

1 large clove of garlic, minced

3 tbls flour

1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

1 package no-boil lasagna noodles

8 ounces shredded mozzarella cheese

1/2 cup finely shredded parmesan cheese

To Make:

Roast the winter squash in a 400 degree until tender, about 50-60 minutes (depending on the type of squash).  Remove and let cool.  Meanwhile, pour 3 cups of milk in a saucepan.  Cut a square of cheesecloth (about 8 inches) and place the bay leaf, peppercorns, thyme, and parsley inside.  Gather up the corners to make a packet and tie tightly with twine.  Add the herb packet to the milk and heat over medium heat until gently simmering.  Simmer for 2 minutes (do not let it boil), remove from heat, and let the milk steep for 30 minutes.

Once the squash is cool, scoop out the flesh and place it in a large bowl.  Mash the squash with a potato masher.  Add the ricotta cheese, sage, 1 tsp of salt, and ground pepper to taste.  Fold the mixture together and set aside. 

To make the bechamel sauce, use a 3-4 quart saucepan and melt the butter over medium heat.  Add the minced garlic and saute until just beginning to brown (about 2 minutes) stirring constantly.  Whisk in the flour and continue to cook, whisking constantly, until the raw flour taste is cooked out, about another 2 minutes.  Remove the herb packet from the milk (discard it).  Slowly pour the milk into the butter and flour mixture, whisking constantly.  Once all the milk has been added, continue to whisk constantly until the mixture has thickened, about 5 minutes.  Season with remaining tsp of salt and ground nutmeg.

To Assemble:

In a 9×13 casserole, spread 1/3 of the bechamel sauce on the bottom of the dish.  Place three lasagna noodles crosswise on top of the sauce.  Top with 1/3 of the squash ricotta mixture and 2 ounces of the mozzarella.  Place three more noodles in the dish.  Top with 1/3 of the squash ricotta mixture, 2 ounces of the mozzarella, and 1/3 of the bechamel sauce.  Repeat the second layer (noodles, the remaining squash, mozzarella).  Top with remaining three noodles, the rest of the bechamel sauce, the rest of the mozzarella cheese, and the grated parmesan.  Cover with aluminum foil and bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.  Remove the foil and bake uncovered for another 30 minutes and the top is browned and bubbly.

To Serve:

Let stand for 10-15 minutes before serving.  Garnish with chopped fresh sage leaves with desired.  Serves 8.

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Filed under Dinner, Pasta, Recipes, Vegetarian