Sunday, March 22, 2015

Adventures In Farm Shares--Week Two

Week two got off to a pretty rocky start. We got the new bunch of vegetables from the farm share box on Wednesday. That night we chopped up kale, red chard, red cabbage and onions and sauteed them with garlic. Meanwhile, I was going to roast beets. I had everything ready to go and set the oven to preheat. Only it never did.
The igniter on our stove died.
We ended up sauteing the beets into the rest of the vegetables that my husband was frying up. The beets were not cooked enough. It had a deep rich flavor but was hard to chew.
The next night we opened a can of chili and mixed the vegetables in. It actually was pretty good. It tasted like the usual can of chili for the most part with some extra crunch mixed in.
We are not getting a new stove for a week and a half so we are restricted to what we can do on the stove top. If the weather decides to improve, maybe we can grill but it is snowing now.
We got potatoes and broccoli and beets this week; all of which cry out to be roasted. Here are the recipes I had planned to try.

Instead we are sauteing what we can and I baked a potato in the microwave to go with my chicken for lunch yesterday. It is not the week we wanted and I think we will just be sauteing things together all week so they don't go bad. Not very exciting but at least we are still eating vegetables. Our new stove is an unexpected expense but hopefully we will get years and years of use out of it. The stove is dead. Long live the stove.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Mushroom Asparagus Risotto

In my last post, I mentioned that we had tweaked an old mushroom asparagus risotto recipe. I do not remember where we first got the recipe or what changes we have made along the way but here is what we do.

2 tsp butter/margarine or oil (one early/one late)
2 cloves garlic (fresh or equivalent minced)
1 cup of white rice (We do not use Arborio as it is expensive)
1/4 cup of white cooking wine
32 oz stock (veggie or chicken)
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
chopped baby bella mushrooms
chopped asparagus (bottom of stock removed)

Put stock in a sauce pot so it starts to heat up. In a separate large pan, melt 1 teaspoon of butter over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté for a couple of minutes to get flavor going. Add cup of rice. Toss it so the butter/garlic mixture coats it thoroughly. Add the white cooking wine and stir and heat until wine is mostly absorbed.
Slowly add the stock to the rice mix about 1/2 cup to a 1 cup at a time allowing it to absorb. Continue this until you have about a cup of stock left. This takes 20 to 25 minutes. Stir regularly.
Add the asparagus and mushrooms along with the last cup of stock. Stir until stock is almost all gone. Turn off heat. Mix in last teaspoon of butter until melted and then add the parmesan cheese, salt and pepper to taste. Serve.

We do not measure the asparagus or the mushrooms. We simply chop as much as we feel like adding. We have also been known to add chopped bratwurst or chicken when adding the vegetables. If you leave out the cheese and use oil, it easily converts to a vegan meal.

Makes dinner for 2 or sides for 4-6. 

Recipe is easily doubled. Stirring in stock will end up taking about 30 minutes.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Adventures In Farm Shares--Week One-Day Six

We still had cabbage and celery left so for lunch, we took an old mushroom asparagus risotto recipe and swapped out the mushroom and asparagus for cabbage and celery. We have been using the recipe for so long that I don't remember where we got it. We bought a house years ago and it came with an asparagus plot so we learned to do it as a way to use all that asparagus.

As for the cabbage and celery risotto, it did not go at all well.

The cabbage and celery are not even visible since they became translucent with cooking. It was a pretty tasteless mess. It was excessively chewy from all the cabbage with no flavor to back it up. I would consider this one to be the only real failure of this week.

Dinner went much better.

For dinner, we used the last sweet potato to make sweet potato fries. Here is that recipe. This went very well. We sliced them on the thin side so they looked like fries. They had a sweet taste to them so they definitely are not like regular fries but tasty. We would do this one again. Here is the picture of that.

Husband sautéed up the last onion in some olive oil for a side as well. I took that one lemon and made lemonade. We used both the fries and onions as sides and pan fried some veal I had defrosted as the main entrée.

We now only have one grapefruit and some celery left so I doubt we will do anymore experimenting this week. Two days until our next farm box and it will supposedly contain "Dino Kale-Rainbow Chard-Red Cabbage-Yukon Gold Potatoes-Celery-Onions-Tangelos-Beets-Broccoli-Grapefruit+Lemon". We will see what we get.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Adventures In Farm Shares--Week One--Day Five

(You can find earlier posts here.)

Today I went with the chorizo and cabbage recipe that I found at It was a snap to make. A little chopping, some sautéing and done. This would definitely make an easy and quick weeknight meal.

I substituted mixed Italian seasoning for the sage as I had none on hand. I admit I did not really measure the cabbage. I simply chopped up one chorizo sausage and added as much cabbage as seemed good.

adventures in farm shares, chorizo and cabbage, things every goddess should know
My husband's reaction was, "Yum" followed by asking when we could make it again. Definite hit on this one. The cabbage is relatively tasteless but the sausage has a little kick to it so they complimented each other really well.

I would absolutely do this one again; probably on a weeknight when I was pressed for time.

We are getting low on things at this point. We have some cabbage left, some celery, 1 sweet potato, 1 lemon, 1 onion and 1 grapefruit. Next box comes on Wednesday so being low is not the worst thing in the world.

Next we are doing risotto with the left over chorizo sausage, cabbage and celery.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Adventures In Farm Shares-Week One-Day Four

(You can see day one here and day two here.)

It occurs to me that I still have a head of cabbage that I have not touched. Time to find some cabbage based recipes. There is always coleslaw. I would need to buy carrots and use low fat mayo to try to ease the calories. Easy to do and something my husband would eat but I'm not a big fan of coleslaw so I would rather find something else.

Breakfast was grapefruit from the farm share box. We ate it straight. It was fine. Nothing worth writing home about.

We made kale chips with the last of the kale. Recipe from found here. I forgot to take a picture. It was nothing like a potato chip. It was very crunchy but seemed to fall apart on your tongue. I would eat them again but with less salt.

Hubby sautéed himself one of the onions in olive oil with the last of the bok choy and ate that straight. Not to my taste but he is both using vegetables from the farm share and not eating something horrible so I consider that a win.

I ate some left over soup from day two and we both had some of the leftover chicken from the rotisserie chicken I bought for day two.

Really the only thing we did new was the kale chips. As I said, I would try them again. I still need to find a use for the cabbage. I am leaning towards a cabbage and chorizo dish and hubby is leaning towards coleslaw. We will see tomorrow.

Of the original farm share from Wednesday, we have 1 lemon, 2 onions, 1 sweet potato, 1 grapefruit, some celery and a head of cabbage left.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Adventures In Farm Shares-Week One-Day Two

(You can find day one here.)

For day two, I wanted to use as many of the different vegetables in my shiny new farm share box as I could. After googling combinations, I went with this Chicken, Sweet Potato & Kale soup from Here is a picture of my final result.

It calls for celery, sweet potatoes, onions and kale; allowing me to use four of the veggies in my box in one meal.

It was a big success. I would absolutely do this one again. I did make some changes in order to make it easier to do on a work night. The recipe calls for raw chicken to be cooked in the broth for 20 minutes. I grabbed an already cooked rotisseries chicken from the grocery store and rough chopped the breast meat and just skipped that part entirely. I also used the spices I had on hand which did not include a jalapeno or cilantro.

I sauteed the chopped onions in oil in my Dutch oven before adding the celery. After about 5 minutes, I add minced garlic along with salt, pepper and Italian spice mix and some ground chili powder I had. In about another 3 minutes, I added in the chicken broth and the shredded breast meat from the rotisserie chicken along with the kale and sweet potatoes. I put the cover on and left it on medium low heat (about 4 on my dial) for 30 minutes; stirring half way through.

It was delicious. I will definitely be going back to to check out some other recipes. We both ate and we still had about two bowls worth for left overs for later.

For dessert, I chopped up those 6 strawberries we got and served it with a couple of spoons of whipped topping.

Result: I used onions, kale, sweet potatoes, celery and the strawberries. All I bought was the rotisserie chicken and my husband is already planning on eating the drumsticks for lunch tomorrow. This one was a definite success. The soup was fairly filling and had a sweet and savory taste to it. Tomorrow night my in-laws are taking us out to dinner for my husband's birthday so no experimenting tomorrow. I have already started looking for Saturday's meal though.

Adventures In Farm Shares-Week One-Day One

Today is the first day of our first attempt at joining a farm share. There are only 2 of us so we went with the small share.

Here is what we were told to expect:
Kale   Grapefruit     Sweet Potatoes     Lemons
Onions     Eggplant    Strawberries    Cabbage   Celery
We received:
1 bunch of Kale    2 Grapefruit  2 Sweet Potatoes
1 Lemon     4 Onions    No Eggplant     6 Strawberries
1 head of Cabbage     1 bunch of Celery and 2 small Bok Choy

Right off my husband was disappointed in the lack of eggplant and I could not help but feel we got a token amount of the grapefruit, kale, lemon and strawberries at best. We have the most onions of anything and I don't like onions. Again, we did order the small share but at $30+ a week I guess I had expected it to not be quite so small.

I emailed the farm share that my husband was disappointed in the lack of the promised eggplant as it is his favorite and would there be eggplant in the future? They responded that it is difficult to predict how much produce they need the first week since many people sign up at the last minute so 14 boxes got different supplies than the rest and we must have been one of them. They said there would most likely be eggplant in the future, they gave us lots of lovely bok choy and we would not have to worry about things spoiling. Basically, it sounds like they ran out of stuff and we got what was left. But hey, now we don't have to worry about any veggies going bad! How kind of them.

Week 1 so far off to a poor start in my opinion.

Things Every Goddess Should Know blogBut since we got bok choy, I am making stir fried bok choy and kale fried rice for dinner. Here is the recipe I am using.

We did have the bok choy/kale stir fried rice for dinner.  Here is a picture of the finished product. I burned the first batch of garlic that it required. They are not kidding about it only taking a few seconds to cook. I tossed that one out and started over.

The final result was not bad. It was all I had made for dinner. It made enough for one serving for me and two for my husband. No leftovers. It was very chewy as both the kale and the bok choy seem to be chewy vegetables and it was very garlicy. I would do it again but I would cut back on the garlic. I would also think about adding some protein like chicken (and I would watch the pot better).