Posted (Lori) in News

The vegetables in this week’s share can be combined in any number of ways—simply, quickly, deliciously. Here are some ideas to start you off—I’d love to hear how you used your share.

If you want more detailed recipes, the newsletter at Carnegie Hill has some interesting ones:


1. Crunchy raw salads: Peel and slice root vegetables (carrots, turnips, kohlrabi, beets, radish) paper-thin or matchstick-size. Combine with broccoli and cauliflower cut into florets, torn lettuce leaves. Add toasted nuts, capers, beans and your favorite dressing; the nuts and beans provide protein and carbs, so this can be a main-dish salad.

2. Cooked vegetables salads: Cut any of the vegetables listed above into bigger pieces—keep the sizes as uniform as possible. Toss with oil, lemon, and your favorite herbs. Arrange in a single layer on a baking pan, salt lightly, and roast in a 400 degree oven, then allow to cool slightly and toss again.

Or—carmelize the vegetables by sautéing in oil, with a teaspoon of sugar added. Toss over medium heat for 10-15 minutes until the vegetables are very soft and browned.

Combine the cooked vegetables with shredded lettuce and any dressing. Bits of meat—grilled chicken strips or shrimp, sautéed sausage—can be added as well.

3. Steamed. Layer the vegetables—cut in uniform wedges or slices–in a steamer basket over boiling water, the heaviest first. Potatoes, carrots, and squash may take 10-15 minutes to cook over steam, while broccoli, cauliflower, and mushrooms take only a few minutes. Add vegetables as the lower layers are nearly done, and at the last minute, throw in shredded greens which only take seconds to cook. Season with salt, pepper, herbs, spices and you’re done—or squeeze on lemon; or dress with a mixture of soy sauce and rice wine vinegar.

4. Mashed. One by one or in combo—root vegetables that are not potatoes are also great candidates for mashing. And broccoli, cauliflower, and squash can be added as well. Dick Sandhaus describes his favorite mashed turnips here:


But it’s also fun to experiment with combinations, adding butter, milk, cheese to finish.

5. Soup. Those mashed vegetables can become a soup in seconds; thin with milk, stock or cream. If you’re planning on soup, reserve some small chunks of cooked vegetables to add texture to the soup. Or make simple croutons: toast a slice of bread, rub with garlic, and drizzle with oil. Cut into small pieces and add to your soup.

6. Raw Crudites with dips. Root vegetables make the best crudités. You can drop them in boiling water for a minute, then plunge them in icewater—it intensifies the color and makes them I easoer on the teeth—but I usually don’t bother. A tray of root vegetables—radish, turnip, kohlrabi, carrot, plus broccoli and cauliflowerets—with a dip is a wonderful party dish. Try bagna cauda (Recipes from America’s Small Farms, p. 108; or warm cheddar (melt cheddar cheese in a saucepan or microwave; stir in cream or milk until it’s the right consistency; add herbs or spices and serve warm.

7. Gratin. Once you get the hang of it, you can make a grain in about 15 minutes, plus 35-40 minutes baking time. There are full instructions in Recipes from America’s Small Farms (p. 15). But the basics are: Peel and slice any combination of vegetables and boil them for about ten minutes, until soft. While they are boiling, make a béchamel sauce: Melt 2-3 tbs butter in a heavy saucepan. Whisk in 3 tablespoons flour and keep stirring until smooth. Add 3 cups milk (heating the milk in the microwave makes it go faster) and stir until the sauce thickens. Add 2 cups of your favorite cheese, grated, to the béchamel. By this time, the vegetables are ready; drain and combine with the sauce. Put the sauced vegetables in a lightly greased baking dish, sprinkle bread crumbs over it and bake in a 375 degree oven.

I find that if I make a gratin at the beginning of the week, I have two or three meals all set; just add a salad and there are no more pots to wash

8. Sandwich. Layering thin slices of turnip, radish, or kohlrabi into any sandwich adds crunch, flavor, and vitamins. I especially like radish with egg salad, kohlrabi with turkey.

9. Grains and Roots. Sauteed or roasted roots are great with pasta, rice, quinoa, or any other grain—have you tried the freekah from Lewis Waite Farms?

10. Fries. I was going to do a piece about deep-frying; many of the vegetables in our share are perfect for deep-frying—and if you fry at the right temperature, the food does not absorb much oil. But Mark Bittman did it better, and right on time (luckily, I’m terribly late with posting today and his piece was posted just as I started).


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