Saturday, February 27, 2010

Harvest Box for February 26, 2010

What a colourful Harvest box this week - take a look inside . . .

Did you notice this week's lemons look slightly more orange than regular lemons? They are Meyer lemons, a fruit thought to be a cross between Eureka or Lisbon lemons and a mandarin orange. Meyer lemons are much sweeter than regular lemons, and they make great additions to salads and other dishes because they lack the sour tartness of other lemons. For more fantastic info on Meyer lemons, be sure to check out All About Meyer Lemons. I did manage to scour up a good collection of recipes to try with your Meyer Lemons . . .

This Fennel Salad with Meyer Lemon looks light and tasty, and this Meyer Lemon Marmalade would be a delightful topping to any scone or bagel. For those with a sweet tooth, why not try a Meyer Lemon Cake with Lavender Cream or Martha's very own Meyer Lemon Coffee Cake? I also found this Meyer Lemon Pudding, which is mostly raw and vegan.

Every time I see a butternut squash I can't wait to start peeling it and cutting it up for soup. There is something about the flavour of butternut squash that truly lends it self to delicious soups. Our family favourite has always been this Apple and Butternut Squash Soup but I'm hoping to try out this Butternut Squash Soup this week. After stumbling upon this Butternut Squash and Macaroni Casserole recipe I think I will test it out and see if I can get the kids to eat it - looks pretty tasty.

Not totally sure what to do with your collard greens? One of the simplest ways in which to enjoy the full flavour of collard greens is to simply sautee them - this recipe for Sauteed Collard Greens is a great place to start. I hear that this Tasty Collard Greens recipe is fabulous - just not sure I am sure yet how I feel about a smoked turkey drumstick being thrown in the recipe! And for the adventurous cook with a lot of time to spare, check out these phenomenal Shredded Mediterranean Carrots Wrapped in Collard Greens - so amazingly healthy and delicious too.

So, get to eating that Harvest Box and be sure to check in with us again next week!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Harvest Box for February 19, 2010

Here's our Harvest Box for February, 19:

I love cooking with leeks and managed to come across a few new leek recipes this week. Being salmon lovers, we are looking forward to trying out this Salmon with Leeks. Another great option would be to make a Leek Tart and serve it as a nice light meal with a side salad. And these Oven Roasted Leeks look just divine!

I think that beautiful rainbow chard is just begging to be sauteed into this Sauteed Swiss Chard with Raisins and Pine Nuts . . . or perhaps those who like things with a bit more "bite" might prefer this Spicy Chard with Ginger.

I came across a couple new recipes for avocado that incorporates pasta. They are both fantastic vegetarian dishes. Why not try mixing things up a bit with your avocado this week and trying this Pasta with Avocado and Spinach or Pasta and Avocado Salad. Delicious!

A friend of mine mentioned that her favourite way to eat avocado is to cut the avocado in chunks and add tomato and red onion with some fresh ground pepper and sea salt. She adds it as a topping for sandwiches, burgers, salads, etc. Sounds perfect to me!

Enjoy your week!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Harvest Box for February 12, 2010

You may notice a four-legged creature peeking inside my Harvest Box for this week. He loves to get a look at what's in there, almost as much as we do.

I'm looking forward to cooking up those delicious mushrooms this week. A great recipe to try in which you can really enjoy the simple flavour of mushrooms is Best Button Mushrooms - easy and a great side dish for most main meals. For something lighter, try combining this week's spinach and mushrooms in the same bowl with a Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Dressing. And this Pasta with Savoury Walnut and Mushroom Sauce promises a rich and tasty weeknight meal.

Since I'm still looking for new and exciting ways to use avocado, I'm going to make these Quick Chicken Tostadas for my family this week. It looks simple and yet tasty, so I'm hoping it's something everyone will like. Another great choice is this California Cobb Club Sandwich - doesn't that look absolutely amazing? We are huge fans of avocado in a sandwich and this one is pretty spectacular.

I found a great vegetarian meal in these Spinach and Mushroom Quesadillas - pretty easy to make, too, and packed with nutrients and good stuff. For some warmth on a cold February night, put your spinach in this White Bean Soup and enjoy a bowlful of something tasty.

I've mentioned before that I often serve broccoli with shrimp because my kids love it and all three of them eat it. Well I stumbled upon this recipe for Roasted Broccoli with Shrimp which is a bit different than mine, and I am definitely trying it out this week. It looks fabulous. I also came across this Chicken Broccoli Parmesan which is touted as a "quick and easy recipe for busy families". So, if you've got one (a busy family, that is!) be sure to give this one a try.

Enjoy your week!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Simple Roasted Cauliflower

A friend suggested I try this simple, tasty method of cooking cauliflower. It's incredibly easy and takes no time at all - and tastes delicious.

Cut your cauliflower (I added some broccolette too) up and put it on a baking sheet - toss with olive oil, a little lemon juice, salt and pepper. Garlic or any spices you have on hand would add extra flavour.

Bake in your oven for about 25 minutes, remove and delight your taste buds with this amazing and crunchy vegetable dish. This is simple enough to serve with almost any main dish, and guess what? Kids like it!! Two of my three little ones ate it . . . and it doesn't really get any better than that.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Pasta with Shrimp and Broccoli

Pasta with Shrimp and Broccoli

1 pound pasta (spaghetti or linguine)
1 large bunch of broccoli, chopped into bite size pieces
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 pound large or extra large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon pepper

Cook the pasta in salted water according to package directions. Add the broccoli for the last 3 to 4 minutes of cooking.

Meanwhile, heat the butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. When the butter is melted, add the garlic. Saute for one minute, then add the shrimp. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 2-3 minutes per side.

Transfer cooked pasta and broccoli to the skillet and heat through. Serve hot.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Harvest Box for February 5, 2010

Let's take a quick look at this week's Harvest Box . . .

I have been trying to think "outside the box" when it comes to avocados lately - I've tried a number of different recipes and while I like many of them, our family still continues to fall back on our all time favourite - Cayenne-Rubbed Chicken with Avocado Salsa. Fast, easy, and so tangy and tasty! And here is yet another Best-Ever Guacamole recipe - give it a try and see for yourself. I have not tried this one yet, but Whole Foods never lets us down, so I am confident the recipe is chip-worthy. And if you're really feeling adventurous with your avocado, why not give this Shrimp and Avocado Omelet a try for a light weeknight meal or weekend brunch?

I am hoping to try this Black Cod with Quinoa and Kiwi Salsa this week but I am not in any way convinced that the kids will eat it. But it is something different for kiwi, and for the most part the kids like seafood. Mostly they like their kiwi cut up, or just eaten with a spoon. I like the simplicity in this Tropical Fruit Cup and the "fun factor" of Rachael Ray's Stacked Fruit Snacks. Also good? Sliced kiwi in a chocolate fondue - heavenly and nice to serve to a loved one on Valentine's Day.

I don't think we've had any squash since Christmas, so if you're wondering what do with this week's acorn squash, why not serve up simple but tasty Roasted Acorn Squash with Rosemary.
For a full meal, take a look at these Pork Chops With Maple Apple Acorn Squash. I also like this Acorn Squash with Cranberry Apple Quinoa recipe.

I really like cream of cauliflower soup and I made one last week using this Cream of Broccoli Soup recipe, just substituting the broccoli for cauliflower. It was fantastic, and this week I'm hoping to try this Cauliflower and Roasted Garlic Soup. For a fun and healthy dip for Superbowl Sunday, make this Spicy Cheddar-Jack Cauliflower Dip and serve it to your football-loving friends and family. Or just anyone who wants a tasty snack! For a nice side dish, give this Cauliflower and Edamame Salad a whirl.

And, last but not least, I have found a handful of fennel recipes to share with you. I am no expert when it comes to fennel and would love to get some tips or recipes from fennel-lovers out there. I loved the photo with this Skillet-Braised Fennel and that's probably going to be enough to get me to try it out. Try incorporating your beets in this Roasted Beet and Fennel Salad. Or, serve up Braised Chicken With Fennel and Apples and give your family a real treat!

Until next week . . . keep enjoying that produce!!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Fresh Pear and Curry Pasta

This recipe is adapted from The Best of The Best of Bridge cookbook. It's full of flavourful and not-too-difficult recipes. This pasta dish is simple, healthy, and light. Our family loves it!

Fresh Pear and Curry Pasta

1/2 small onion, chopped
2 T oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 T medium curry paste
1 tsp tomato paste
2 T honey
2 cups chicken broth
1 unpeeled ripe pear, sliced in thin wedges
2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
2 T cream or milk
3 T chopped cilantro
Rotini, bow tie or shells pasta

In a frying pan over medium heat, saute onion in oil until soft. Add garlic and curry paste and stir 2-3 minutes. Add tomato paste and honey and stir another 2 minutes. Add broth, increase heat to medium high and boil gently, reducing liquid to less than 1 cup. (This takes about 15 minutes - now is a good time to start cooking the pasta).

Add pear slices and cook for one minute. Add tomatoes and cream and stir another 2 minutes. Stir in chopped cilantro. Pour over pasta and toss gently.