Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Chili Steak Wraps - June 27, 2009

Stir-fried Beef and Garlic Scapes over Hummus with Lettuce and Radish

Saturday's supper was inspired by a recipe from Donna Hay's "New Food Fast." I love Donna Hay's cookbooks for the simple, beautiful recipes and for how she calls arugula, rocket and eggplant, aubergine. I am totally jealous that Rima got to meet her at a cooking class when living in Australia a few years back. It was Donna's idea to combine the hummus and beef into a tortilla wrap. I never would have thought of that combo, but it was really tasty together. We changed up the recipe a bit by throwing the garlic scapes in with the beef and stir-frying rather than grilling. We also chose to top with radishes rather than tomatoes, since we had some lovelies in the fridge, waiting to be used up. I liked how the scapes complimented the garlic in the hummus...a nice little layering of flavor.
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Monday, June 29, 2009

Weekend Eats - June 27-28, 2009

I love summer in Minneapolis! A few highlights from our weekend include homemade coconut ginger ice tea, BBQ at Peavey Plaza, delicious sandwhiches made to order at France 44 cheese shop, a Thai inspired simple syrup for Blue Thai Mojitos, red beet ice cream and a Thousand Hills grass fed beef hotdog from the Chef Shack, and fresh strawberries from the Kingfield Farmers' Market.
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Saturday, June 27, 2009

Kohlrabi Fritters

Once again from the pages of Asparagus to Zucchini comes a dish new to the Orum household: kohlrabi fritters. We served it with a mint yogurt sauce for a delightful (and quickly consumed) pairing of crunchy and smooth, hot and cool -- just like a McDLT! As with almost everything we've prepared lately with members of the kingdom plantae, this dish features the finest from Harmony Valley CSA.

I binged (bung?) kohlrabi, and learned that this veggie is of the species Brassica oleracea, along with broccoli and cauliflower, both fine fritter matter in their own right.

The McDLT, by comparison, is something completely different:

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Friday, June 26, 2009

RIP KOP BLT - June 25, 2009

Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato and Jarlsburg on Whole Wheat Sourdough

Some may think it strange to commemorate Michael Jackson's sudden passing with a sandwich. Indeed, my friends, that was not my intent when planning this meal. Actually I was thinking of a use for all that fresh, cool, green leafy lettuce from the CSA and how much I love it paired with salty bacon and juicy tomatoes. When I heard the sad news about the King of Pop just before dinner, however, I couldn't help but think it an appropriate homage. Both singer and sandwich are classic*, both iconic...of course I also paid tribute by dancing madly (and not nearly as well as he) around my house all evening to his amazing music, cranked up pretty loudly. So, here's to you MJ - I miss you already.

*Turns out, one really shouldn't mess around too much with a classic. Horseradish mustard should NOT be used in direct ratio as a substitution for mayo...a case of a little going a long way.
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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Eggrolls - June 23, 2009

Napa Cabbage, 'Sausage,' and Jasmine Rice Eggrolls

This was a fun dinner! I came across the eggroll recipe when I was looking through the Chinese Cabbage section of "Asparagus to Zucchini" and thought it sounded like the perfect thing to do with our lovely head of Cabbage from this week's CSA box. Also, I liked that I could use up most of the remaining Gimme Lean 'Sausage' product from Sunday's supper and, using the mung bean noodles the recipe called for would save me from excessive use of the stove on this hot, hot, hot summer day. Great plan until I realized we were out of mung bean noodles. So brown jasmine rice was the pinch hitter and the stove was turned on (along with the AC!). We didn't have any of those little duck sauce packets saved from previous take-out dinners, so I made a little lime and fish sauce mixture for dipping, also inspired by a recipe in "A to Z."
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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Tuna Roll-Ups - June 22, 2009

Tuna, Garbanzo, Radish and Muenster on Green Leafy Lettuce

Here in Minneapolis it's been so hot I loathe to turn on lights, let alone the oven. Luckily this meal involved opening only cans and the refrigerator. I cut the radishes and muenster in equally sized cubes and they looked very similar on the plate, but obviously have very different tastes and textures in the mouth. It's an idea I found in one of the MFK Fisher books I read recently (she used the example of shredded carrots and orange zest in a salad). She suggests it as a way to keep us engaged and thoughtful with what we are eating instead of mindlessly putting forkful after forkful into our mouths. I like the idea of a fun surprise on our forks to keep us on our toes.
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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

CSA Salad - June 21, 2009

Spinach and Mixed Greens Salad with 'Sausage'

Please excuse the twisty tie in the background of the picture! My sister kindly picked up our CSA box while we were out of town so we had some fresh greens in the fridge. As we had wiped the cupboards pretty bare prior to leaving for California, we had a bit of a pantry challenge on our hands. Lucky for us my other sister had left some Gimme Lean faux sausage in our freezer when she moved (almost a year ago!). We decided to give it a try for a little added protein. We were admittedly surpised by the tastiness of the 'sausage.' We also threw in some freshly chopped tarragon, sage, chives and oregano. Adding fresh herbs is another trick (one of my favorites) for spicing up a summer salad.
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Monday, June 22, 2009

California Trip - June 11-20, 2009

We had a great trip out to California hitting both San Francisco and the San Diego area. Some highlights include Prather Ranch Hot Dogs from the Ferry Building, Blue Bottle Coffee Co Coffee, Heirloom Tomatoes, the best Fish Tacos ever from Juanita's in Encinitas, home-made Ginger Simple Syrup for making Ginger Ales, a great Thai take out sampler plate from Siamese Basil in Encinitas, Donuts from Leucadia Donut Shoppe, and beautiful California strawberries.
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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Kitchen Sink Pizza - June 10, 2009

Bacon, Asparagus, Green Onion, Carmelized Onion, Oven-Roasted Tomato, Currant, Spinach and Chevre with a Green Salad

Pretty much everything but the kitchen sink. I am happy and relieved to say that this finished up the remainder of our fresh veggies and then some! All that's left is a half bag of spinach that will be today's lunch. Ahhh...now we can Vay-K with a clean conscience. We're off to sunny (I hope) California to celebrate birthdays and weddings. Cheers!
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Spinach - June 9, 2009

Spinach, Beef, and Noodles in Broth

Look familiar? Like I combined a few nights of leftovers, threw in some spinach, and called it dinner? You're right.
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Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Turnips - June 8, 2009

Spring Turnips with Greens and Raisins

Last night's dinner used up our baby turnips (and their greens). The recipe is from (where else?) "Asparagus to Zucchini." Since we had this as a main course, we served it over pasta as was suggested in the recipe. Also, I substituted currants for raisins because I like them better. We really liked this dish, and it was especially useful that it incorporated both the turnip roots and greens.
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Rhubarb - June 8, 2009

Rhubarb Syrup (top) and Rhubarb Vodka (bottom)

Yesterday's project was to use up the rhubarb. I used half to make a syrup, which I thought could be added to lots of beverages, alcoholic and non, and half to infuse more vodka. The vodka will have to sit for a few days in the fridge, but I should have just enough time to strain it before we leave for our trip.
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Monday, June 08, 2009

Bok Choy - June 7, 2009

Korean-Style BBQ Short Ribs over Spicy Bok Choy with Udon Noodles

Last night's dinner used up our giant head of bok choy from the CSA. The recipe was found in "Asparagus to Zucchini" and was a hit at our house. We switched it up slightly as the recipe called for sesame noodles and we used udon and added a bit of the sesame salt mix from the rib marinade. We got these lovely ribs at the Kingfield Farmers' Market (which incidentally is holding a rhubarb bake/cook-off next week and is looking for entries). Nick compiled two to three different recipes to make the marinade. They were tasty, but after two attempts at grilling beef short ribs, our next venture will involve braising as both these and the previous batch ended up a little tough.
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Sunday, June 07, 2009

Breakfast Asparagus - June 6, 2009

Asparagus alla Milanese on Toast

Another recipe lifted out of "From Asparagus to Zucchini," this one from Lombardino's restaurant in Madison. We managed to use up all but three stalks of our aspargus (those remaining might be put in asparagus guacamole, also from "A to Z"). The only modification we made was serving it over whole wheat sourdough toast. This was my first batch of sourdough in which I used some whole wheat flour and I really liked the results. Stay tuned...the frantic consumption of veggies will continue over the next few days in the hopes of using everything before we leave town!
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Friday, June 05, 2009

CSA Delivery - June 4, 2009

Baby Broccoli and Toasted Sesame Salad with Smoked Gouda Burgers

We got lots of fun goodies in our CSA delivery this week! The most exotic item was hon tsai tai greens...they are in the foreground with the pretty yellow flowers. My favorite part of the CSA experience is receiving veggies that I would never buy if I were left up to my own devices, and figuring out what to do with them. I am lucky our CSA passes on some tips and recipes, like the broccoli salad we had last night. The dressing was so great with that rich toasted sesame oil and a little sweet honey. Plus, we've already used up the broccoli, hon tsai tai and the green garlic (plus 2 green onions which were chopped up in the burger) in one meal. Efficient use of our fresh veggies will be extra important this time around as we will be out of town for a good part of it.
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Thursday, June 04, 2009

Under the Weather - June 2, 2009

Spicy Vietnamese Broth with Mung Bean Noodles and Green Garlic

Unfortunately we've been dealing with nasty spring colds this week. Tuesday we decided to modify our Pho recipe from "The Splendid Table's How to Eat Supper" into just a basic broth with noodles. Our last green garlic went on top to garnish and give us some healthy greens. It was just the thing to sooth sore throats and, with a little kick of ginger, open up our sinuses.
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Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Cafe Rushmore - June 1, 2009

Polenta with Sausage, Tomato and Olive Ragout

Since we had a guest (Natalie) for this dinner, we decided it officially turned into a Cafe Rushmore evening. "Cafe Rushmore" is an anagram of Nick and my last names. Natalie incorporated the anagram and officially designed this 'identity' for us a while back. From now on, whenever we host anyone for dinner we'll post it under Cafe Rushmore. Dinner was tasty. We used Italian sausage we got at Kingfield Farmers' Market which had it's opening day on Sunday. Natalie also did their logo...I guess we had kind of a theme going. Cheers!

Check out Natalie's blog here.

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Tuna and Spinach Papparadelle - May 31, 2009

Papparadelle with Tuna, Spinach, Ramps and Kalamata Olives

Sunday's dinner was some "pantry cooking" and also managed to use up more of our CSA veggies. We only have sunchokes, burdock root and one green garlic left to use before our new delivery on Thursday.
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Apple and Brie Sammy - May 31, 2009

Brie, Ganny Smith Apples, and Fig Spread on French Bread

I had purchased most of these things to have snacks when my parents stopped by on Saturday, but we never got around to pulling them out. They were happily re-purposed as Sunday's lunch. Yum.
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Monday, June 01, 2009

Ginger Floats - May 31, 2009

Rhubarb Ginger Ice Cream in Ginger Ale

I made a batch of this ice cream for a cook-out at a friend's house this weekend. It was very tasty on it's own, but with the little bit of left-over ice cream we decided to make floats. Very fun! I might also try this with plain club soda on recommendation from JJ.
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Orum - May 29, 2009

Bagels with Cream Cheese, Chives, and Radishes

A quick, light and tasty dinner!
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