Friday, October 15, 2010

Help me use up our vegetables

I purposefully refuse to substitute items from my CSA because I want to encourage adventurous eating in our house. There's a disconnect however. We get it and then we don't know what to do with it and sometimes I don't get around to figuring it out.

So I'm going to make this a a little game: I'll list the vegetables (we know what to do with the fruit...) that I got and you guys can tell me some ideas for what to make.

Hopefully, I'll get a plan to use everything up.

In this weeks CSA, we have:
1 bunch of radishes
2 Baby Bok Choy
1 bunch Red Chard
1 (surprisingly large!) bunch green onions
1 acorn squash
2 lbs of yukon potatoes
1 bunch of basil
1 head red leaf lettuce

With the bok choy, I'm planning to make a red lentil dish with spicy red peppers and coconut milk with jasmine rice. A neighbor brought it over to us after Belle was born and I loved it. Now I've got all the ingredients and I'm going to give it a try on my own.

Swiss chard we usually do as a side vegetable with any meal so that's easy.

We just had caprese salad the other night so I'm looking for something different to do with the basil.

I'm stumped mostly with the radishes. We're not fans of them raw and have no idea how to otherwise prepare them so we're not overwhelmed by the strong flavor.

Extra points are given to anyone who can combine ingredients for a tasty meal.


Rixa said...

I just made this tonight and it's delicious, something I love making when fall rolls around. It's originally a stuffed squash/pumpkin recipe, but I have a hard time finding squashes or eating pumpkins big enough so I don't usually stuff them with the goes:

squash or pumpkin
ground pork or pork sausage
greens (kale, spinach, bok choy, swiss chard, etc)
parmesan cheese
herbs for seasoning

1. cook your squash. I used to bake mine, but now I do it in the microwave. Put the halved, seeded squahes face-down in a glass dish, cover with plastic wrap, and microwave 10-15 minutes or until done.
2. Meanwhile sautee 2 large onions and 1 lb ground pork (or pork sausage, bratwurst removed from casing, etc). Add chopped greens to the pork mixture and sautee for a few minutes until wilted & tender.
3. Add 2 eggs to the pork mixture and stir. Add in a generous amount of Parmesan cheese.
4. Cook 2 cups couscous (pour 2 cups boiling water over 2 cups couscous, stir, and cover for 5 minutes).
5. Mix couscous with pork mixture. Add salt, pepper, and whatever herbs sound good. I had sage & thyme on hand. Parsley is also yummy.
6. Layer squash & couscous/pork mixture in a casserole dish. Bake for about 30 minutes at 350 or until hot.

This super super good. It makes a fairly large dish, but it freezes quite well. If you do have a large squash or pumpkin, then cut the top off and scoop out the sees. Place the stuffing inside the pumpkin and bake for 60-90 minutes or until the pumpkin is all the way cooked.

Amira said...

I have a potato curry that's excellent with yukons and a pilaf from China that is served with pumpkin or squash on top. Let me know if you want either recipe. I can send them when I'm not on the iPad. We like radishes with tomatoes and cucumbers, but that's about all we've ecer done with them. Red lettuce is good as a wrapper for various Asian fillings. Green onions are really good in a Persian pilaf I have too.

cognosco said...

Roast the radishes. It takes out the bite and leaves them sweet. All you need is a little olive oil, maybe a few garlic cloves, and salt and pepper. You could throw the green onions in if you wanted. You could probably, if you are feeling kind of crazy, cut the potatoes and acorn squash into chunks and roast them along with the radishes. Radishes roast well with many root veggies. Acorn squash isn't a root veggie, but it kind of reminds me of sweet potatoes, so I think it would work.

cc said...

I was going to suggest a stir fry, but it sounds like you've already got good uses for the ingredients I would have combined.

We really like acorn squash roasted by itself with butter and salt and pepper and a little brown sugar baked in. But the recipes from everyone else sound fun and new. Maybe I'll try them too!

Whenever someone gives me extra of something that I don't want to eat alone, or that the kids turn their nose up at, I chop it as small as I can and incorporate it. Kind of the Jessica Seinfeld idea, but I try to make it a little more obvious so that the kids can develop a taste for it gradually and recognize it when they see it (I still have to do this with zuccini a lot). Or lots of different things can go into a quick stir fry.

Jenne said...

Rixa, that filling sounds wonderful. I did a stuffed pumpkin last year and I should do it again this year. I think our little pumpkins might be perfect.

Amira, I think I'm going to have to get the recipe from you again for the red lentil coconut curry. I've looked online and can't find anything similar to it. Maybe its a more obvious recipe but I'm so excited to have the meal I remember I want to follow the recipe instead of do my typical, I'll try and see how it turns out.

Cognosco, thank you for the suggestion to roast the radishes. I think I'll try it. I like to do a roasted root veggies meal and throwing the radishes in sounds like a good way to round out the flavors. Maybe I'll experiment with that at lunch time before trying it on the whole family....

Katie said...

Yum, radishes!

I make some sort of sweet chicken (either bourbon chicken or brown sugar chicken in the crockpot), shred it with a fork and make wraps - a little bit of ginger salad dressing, the chicken, grated carrots & radishes, lettuce. My husband LOVES them ... and he HATES vegetables.

You could make a soup with your potatoes & onions. (I'm making soup today to freeze, actually.)

Basil ... pesto? I make a pasta sauce with diced Romas, olive oil, basil and slivered garlic. You add it all together, cover, and let it sit for a day. (You don't have to refrigerate it.) Just bring to a simmer while you're boiling your pasta. I just throw it all together - no real rhyme or reason - and season in the end with a little salt & pepper!

(Oh, this is my first comment ... I've been following for a while!)

Anonymous said...

You can use radishes in a stir-fry, or grate them into soup. Once cooked, the strong flavour seems to vanish. In Central Asia, when radishes are one of the first vegetables available after a long winter with few fresh foods, radishes are cooked in a lot of dishes.