Week Eight: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

This really is my favorite time of year. Nearly every surface of our kitchen is bursting with amazing produce, thanks to Groundswell! I’m so grateful we are able to have such abundance at our finger tips. I’ve been working away in the kitchen, creating many different dishes to use what we have before we get more! This week includes my all-time favorite broccoli salad, a roasted peach salad, roasted eggplant and pepper relish, shrimp and bok choy stir fry and a simple creamy cucumber salad.

Broccoli Slaw
recipe credit: The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

2 heads broccoli, each 3/4 – 1 lb.
1/2 c. thinly slice almonds, toasted
1/3 c. dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
1/2 c. buttermilk, well shaken
1/2 c. mayonnaise
2 TBSP apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
lots of freshly ground black pepper

Trim broccoli and chop into large chunks, then cut each floret chunk into thin slices. Cut the stems into thin matchsticks.  Toss sliced broccoli with almonds and cranberries.

In a small bowl, whisk buttermilk, mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar and salt until smooth. Stir in onion. Pour dressing over broccoli mixture and add black pepper. Stir again, so salad is evenly coated. Serve immediately, or keep in fridge for 2 – 3 days.

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The Kitchen Beet - Peach, Mozzarella, Chive Salad

Roasted Peach, Fresh Mozzarella and Chive Salad
recipe credit: The Kitchen Beet 

Roasted Peach, Fresh Mozzarella and Chive Salad
8 oz spicy greens (arugula, mizuna, whatever you have on hand!)
2 firm but ripe peaches, sliced into bite-sized pieces
1 – 8 oz ball of fresh mozzarella, sliced into medium-thick pieces
handful of fresh chives, chopped
1/4 small red onion, as thin as you can slice it

Dijon-White Wine Vinaigrette
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP white wine vinegar
1 TBSP dijon mustard
1 – 2 tsp. honey, to taste
sea salt and black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 300 F. Slice your peaches, mozzarella and red onion, and chop your chives. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place your peaches on it so they are not touching. Roast for about 8 minutes, or until warm and juicy. In a bowl or on a platter, toss your clean, dry salad greens and arrange the rest of the ingredients on top.

In a small glass bowl with a spout, whisk together dressing ingredients, tasting as you go, so it is to your liking. (Alternatively, you could shake all ingredients in a small mason jar with a lid.)

Drizzle dressing on top of the salad. It won’t need much to highlight the flavors.

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Roasted Eggplant and Pepper Relish
recipe credit: Seven Spoons 

4 red bell peppers, seeded, cored and sliced thinly
1 medium eggplant, cut into 1/4″ batons
1 large onion, halved lengthwise and then sliced very thinly
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons good olive oil, divided
1/4 cup good quality balsamic vinegar, see note
1 tablespoon capers, drained and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons minced fresh basil
sprinkle of dried red pepper flakes (optional)
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C). On a standard rimmed baking sheet or large roasting pan, toss together the peppers and eggplant. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast, for 15 minutes, turning occasionally. Add 3/4 of the onion (reserve the rest) and continue to cook until the vegetables are soft but without much colour, about 25-30 minutes more.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, make the vinaigrette; combine the vinegar, capers, garlic and basil. Slowly whisk in the 1/2 cup of olive oil, until thick and emulsified. Mix in the reserved onion and the red pepper flakes (if using), season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

When finished roasting, tumble the hot vegetables into the vinaigrette, tossing well to combine. Make sure to scrape any caramelized bits off of the pan and any accumulated juices. Allow the vegetables to marinate for 20 minutes at the least, serving the relish warm. My preference is to cool the mixture, then refrigerate in a sealed container overnight. It can then be served at room temperature or warmed gently. You could use to make a great toasted sandwich – perhaps add some cheese, too!

Makes about 2 cups.

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Shrimp and Bok Choy Stir-Fry
recipe credit: Food52

For velveting the shrimp:

  • 1large egg white
  • 1tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2teaspoons rice wine, dry sherry, or rice vinegar
  • 1teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1tablespoon peanut, canola, or vegetable oil
  • Water for poaching
For the stir-fry:

  • 1tablespoon peanut, canola, or vegetable oil
  • 1tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 to 3garlic cloves, minced
  • 1tablespoon chili-garlic sauce, or to taste
  • 4scallions, white and green parts separated and thinly sliced
  • 1pound baby bok choy, washed and thoroughly dried
  • 1/2pound snow peas
  • 2tablespoons rice wine, dry sherry, or rice vinegar
  • 1tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2cup toasted chopped cashews
  • Cooked white or brown rice for serving
  • Toasted sesame seeds for garnish
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine egg white, cornstarch, wine or vinegar, and soy sauce, and whisk until smooth. Add shrimp and toss to coat. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes while you prep the other ingredients. (This step can be done a day ahead.)
  2. While the shrimp marinates, separate the baby bok choy into leaves and, if desired, trim and de-string the snow peas. Set aside.
  3. Bring a pot of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil and reduce the heat to low so that the water is at a bare simmer. Add shrimp and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Drain the shrimp thoroughly, and set aside.
  4. Place a large skillet or wok (not nonstick) over the highest heat the pan can handle. Heat until the pan is very hot: A drop of water flicked on the surface should sizzle and evaporate within a second or two. Swirl 1 tablespoon of oil into the hot pan, then add ginger, garlic, chili-garlic sauce, and the white parts of the scallions, and stir-fry for about 10 seconds.
  5. Add the snow peas and bok choy and stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the bok choy leaves are wilted. Add wine or vinegar and soy sauce and stir-fry for 1 minute more, or until the bok choy stems are starting to get tender. Add shrimp and stir-fry for another minute, or until the shrimp is cooked through, the veggies are tender, and everything is coated with sauce.
  6. Remove from the heat, and mix in the cashews and the green parts of the scallions. Spoon over rice, garnish with sesame seeds, and serve immediately.

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Creamy Cucumber Salad
recipe credit: Ina Garten (Barefoot Contessa)

4 cucumbers, thinly sliced (3 to 4 pounds)
2 small red onions, thinly sliced in half rounds
Kosher salt
4 cups (32 ounces) plain whole-milk yogurt
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
1/2 cup minced fresh dill
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Mix the cucumbers, red onions, and 1 1/2 tablespoons of salt in a bowl. Pour them into a colander and suspend it over a bowl. Wrap the bowl and colander with plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator to drain for at least 4 hours or overnight. Discard the liquid that collects in the bowl.

Pour the yogurt into a sieve lined with a paper towel and suspend it over another bowl. Wrap the bowl and sieve in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Discard the liquid that collects in the second bowl.

When the cucumbers are ready, roll them up in paper towels or a kitchen towel and press the towel lightly to remove most of the liquid. Place the cucumbers and yogurt in a large bowl with the sour cream, vinegar, dill, 2 teaspoons salt, and the pepper. Toss well and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and serve chilled.

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This entry was posted in basil, bok choy, broccoli, chives, cucumber, dill, eggplant, garlic, green onion, onions, peas, Red Onion, salad greens, sweet peppers. Bookmark the permalink.

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