Week #15 (9/8 & 11)

This week your basket contains: summer squash, cucumbers, sweet corn, sweet peppers, carrots, kale, eggplant, beets, tomatoes, beans and basil.

It has been feeling a bit like fall lately, which means only one thing: THE PUMPKIN PICK UP PARTY IS COMING UP SOON!  Mark your calendars for October 17th & 18th as the day(s) to come out and pick your jack-o-lantern, eat pizza (including pumpkin pie pizza!), press cider and have fun with other subscribers.

The beets and kale have loved the recent change in the weather.  With larger beets like the ones this week, it is easier to use them if you roast them first as called for in this recipe. We always check the beet for doneness by sticking a fork through the foil as a test.

RICE, BEET AND KALE SALAD WITH CIDER DRESSING

1 lb beets, halved

⅔ cup uncooked black rice (sometimes called “forbidden rice”)

1 ⅓ cup water

½ cup pecans, roughly chopped

2 cups packed, shredded raw kale

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons cold-pressed flaxseed oil OR extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon whole grain mustard

1 clove garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dried thyme (whole, not ground)

1 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste

Ground pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Add beets to a sheet of parchment-lined foil. Crunch into a ball. Roast for 1 1/2 hours, until tender. Cool until comfortable to handle. Cut beets into bite-sized pieces or wedges. Add to a large bowl.  In a medium pot, add rice and 1 1/3 cups water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 40 to 45 minutes. Fluff with a fork and add to beets, along with kale and pecans.  In a small bowl, whisk together all dressing ingredients or shake in a jar. Add to salad. Toss to combine, cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (overnight is best). Before serving, taste and adjusting seasoning if desired. This salad will keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days.

Tip: If you can’t find black rice, try wild rice (cook according to wild rice package directions). This would be fabulous with a little goat’s milk feta, chevre or thick yogurt on top.  From The New York Times Vegetarian Thanksgiving

BRAISED CARROTS

1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 lb. carrots (about 5-6)

6 cloves garlic

2 c. drained, seeded, chopped canned tomatoes

¼ c. fresh mint

3 slices lemon, plus juice from the rest of the lemon

1 Tbsp. sugar

¾ tsp. kosher salt

½ tsp. anise seed

¼ tsp. ground cumin

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Peel and chop carrots lengthwise into 5×1/2×1/2-inch sticks.  Put oil and carrots in a heavy skillet.  Cook over high heat, stirring often and scraping the browned bits with a wooden spoon, until the carrots have browned nicely, about 10 minutes.  Add garlic, tomatoes, mint, lemon slices, sugar, salt, anise and cumin; mix well.  Cook until bubbling vigorously, then reduce heat to low.  Cover and cook for 20 minutes.  Stir, turning the carrots.  Cover and cook until the carrots are very soft, 20 minutes more.  Add lemon juice and season with pepper.  Serve hot or at room temperature.  Serves 4. From Eating Well Feb./Mar. 2006.

IMAM BAYILDI

2/3 cup olive oil

3 medium eggplants

Salt and pepper

2 onions

4 garlic cloves

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 Lb tomatoes, chopped

1 Tbs dried oregano

½ tsp sugar (optional)

3 Tbs chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice eggplant in half lengthwise and, using a large frying pan, fry in batches in 1/3 cup olive oil, until brown on both sides (10 -15 minutes).  Blot off excess oil with paper towels. Arrange on shallow baking dish and season with salt and pepper.  Heat the remaining olive oil in a sauce pan, saute onions until they start to color. Add garlic and cumin, fry for 2-3 minutes then add tomatoes, oregano and sugar (if desired).  Pour in 2/3 cup water and season with salt and pepper.  Cover and cook for 15 minutes.  Stir in parsley and divide stuffing into 6 equal portions.  Pile the stuffing on each eggplant half.  Pour 2/3 cup boiling water into the baking dish and cook in oven for 45 minutes.  Serve hot or at room temperature.  Serves 6.  Adapted from Easy Vegan.

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