Saturday, November 28, 2009

Harvest Box for November 27, 2009

Look at all that colour in this week's harvest box! It looks absolutely inviting and delicious.

I will be adding a little information each week here at the Life Organic blog about storing your produce . . . so keep reading and be sure to comment if you have any questions or challenges you'd like me to address.

See that bag of local parsnips?? They are a pleasant tasting root vegetable, similar to carrots. Like carrots, parsnips need to be peeled. They can be boiled or steamed, and are quite divine when roasted in the oven. Parsnips can also be boiled and then mashed, just like potatoes. Smaller parsnips can also be peeled and grated raw into many salads.

Store your unwashed parsnips in a cool, dark place, just as you would your carrots. Wrapped in a paper towel and placed in a plastic bag in the vegetable drawer of your refrigerator, they should last up to two weeks, if not longer. And your cooked parsnips may be refrigerated and used within three days.

As always, I am a big fan of the Foodland Ontario recipe lists, and they have not disappointed in their parsnip recipes. If you think I am not trying these Cajun Parsnip Fries this week for my kids, you are nuts!! They look fantastic. I hope to take some photos and have a full review for you next week. And I also found this cook weather-friendly recipe for Middle Eastern Spiced Carrots and Parsnips - looks great and carrots and parsnips create a wonderful blend of flavours.

Those Honey Crisp apples? TASTE LIKE CANDY. They are absolutely divine. I'd like to suggest some delicious baking recipes, or share my favourite crock pot applesauce recipe with you - but, really, just crush your teeth into those delicious apples and eat them all in one sitting. You can't beat it!

Because the local broccoli is really at the end of its season, be sure to eat it right away. This week's bunches of broccoli won't last nearly as long as some of the earlier varieties. And I have raved about broccoli soup before, but why not serve up some Sesame Broccoli as a pleasing side dish? We love to have it with a grilled steak! This very simple Penne with Broccoli is a nice light weeknight meal, too.

See those yam sweet potatoes??? So much potential! Yams and sweet potatoes should be stored in a dark, cook area for up to two weeks - do not put them in your refrigerator! Cooked yams can stay in your fridge for two or three days.

My kids absolutely adore these Savoury Sweet Potato Sticks - they are mouth-watering and pretty healthy too! Basic but luscious Roasted Yams are also a favourite, and you can't beat a recipe like these Roasted Mashed Potatoes and Yams. These will definitely be making an appearance on my dinner table over the Christmas holidays!

And I realize I've posted this Potato Leek Soup a gazillion times before, but it really is THAT GOOD. I urge you to give it a try this week - you will simply not be disappointed! Here is a great bunch of tips on how to cut and wash your leeks . . . I had no idea how to handle leeks before I started cooking with them regularly. The same cook offers an interesting Split Pea Soup Recipe that uses leeks.

Did you know that blueberries contain 14 mg of Vitamin C and 0.8 mg of Vitamin E per cup???
These naturally occurring antioxidants are thought to help protect the body against the damaging effects of free radicals and chronic diseases. Yup, totally true. And because I have a bit of a sweet tooth (understatement of the century), I often eat my blueberries in baked goods. Take a look at Canadian Living's list of their very best blueberry recipes. I always have people raving about my Lemon Blueberry muffins, and they are healthier than a lot of the other varieties I have tried. I also love serving blueberries or other berries (even sometimes frozen ones, in the winter) on top of my home-made granola with some yogurt.

Keep your mango at room temperature until it is ripe. You can usually tell it is ready to ready to eat when it is soft to touch (not hard and firm) and has a sweet aroma. It will often be a reddish-orange colour, although mango colours can vary from region to region. This Baked Mangoes with Cinnamon Sugar Tortillas doesn't look like a particular quick and easy recipe, but - oh my goodness - it looks decadent and well worth the effort in preparation. And I've been eying this Mango and Lime-Glazed Chicken as I am a big fan of roasting whole chickens (and very recently bought some two-for-the-price-of-one at a local grocery store!). Malaysian Mango Chicken Curry is also tempting me . . . the recipe had me at "curry"!

Check the past couple week's posts for tips for your baby bok choy!

Have a fantastically delicious week and be sure to send me comments or questions if you'd like to see anything included for next week.

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