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How To Eat Your Box! Week of 10/30/16

How to Eat Your BOX!

Get to know: Plantains

If you didn’t get this in your box I would highly recommend adding it to your next delivery!

This versatile fruit is eaten cooked (not raw like its popular cousin, the banana) and can be steamed, boiled, grilled, fried or baked! A common staple in most Latin American countries, plantains are typically served in two different ways; as Tostones or Maduros. The most important distinction between these two recipes is not necessarily the way you cook them, but when you cook them. Tostones are made using green plantains (unripe, starchy) whereas making maduros requires you to wait until they turn completely black (over-ripe). As the plantain ripens, it becomes sweeter and its color changes from green to yellow to black, just like a banana. When the outer skin turns completely black and the inside turns deep yellow and soft, it’s at its sweetest. Look up more recipes online or check out this website for more fun ways to eat plantains!

I usually wait until my plantains ripen to a yellow and blotchy coloring (not completely black). I feel like it’s a happy medium between the starchy potato like texture of a green plantain and the sticky sweetness of a black one. They can be difficult to peel so I like to cut them in half and makes strips length-wise with a knife. I then slice these into half inch “coins” which I fry in some coconut oil until golden brown on both sides. Blot with a paper towel to take off any extra oil, add a little salt and voila! One of my all-time favorite snacks!

Make a Salad! (Romaine lettuce, Carrot, Tomato, Avocado, Cucumber)

I don’t know about you, but I love having salad for lunch! It can be so much more than a side for dinner! Simply top your salad with a protein (salmon or chicken are my favorite), dressing, and you have a complete meal! I prefer to mix my own salad dressing because so many store-bought brands are loaded with sugar and who knows what else. My favorite combination is to mix olive oil and balsamic vinegar with a dash of pepper and or whatever else piques my interest….mustard is always a good idea. 🙂 Mix your dressing in a separate bowl/cup first to get it just right. Salad items this week include romaine lettuce, carrots, and beefsteak tomatoes as well as avocado and cucumber in some boxes. You could even add some broccoli if you’re feeling extra fancy. I also enjoy putting fruit, nuts, and seeds in my salad….it can be quite the smorgasbord;)

Make a Soup! (Potato and Leek)

Two words: LEEK SOUP! What could be more comforting this time of year than a warm bowl of potato soup? Potato leek soup is a classic and so easy to make! You simply saute chopped leaks in butter until soft, then add diced potatoes, stock, and herbs, bring to a simmer and cook until potatoes are done. You don’t even need to add cream to make this soup creamy, just blend some or all the of the soup to thicken. Simple, delicious, and satisfying. Find the recipe here.

Roast your Vegetables! (Broccoli, Carrot, Potato, Leek (If you have any beets and parsnips left over from last week they are fantastic served up this way!)

One of my favorite ways to eat root vegetables is baked in the oven. It’s so easy and such a great way to use up those leftover veggies in your fridge. Simply chop everything into roughly the same size chunks, toss with a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper, other fresh herbs (thyme, parsley, dill, rosemary, and or sage). Bake at 400 °F for about 45 minutes, stirring once or twice until the vegetables are tender and browned.

Corn on the Cob! (Only in the Harvest and Vegetable boxes this week)

The easiest and most common method to cook your corn is to boil it. Simply put a pot of water on the stove on high, once it starts to boil add your corn (make sure there is enough water to cover). After the water starts boiling again, it’s done! Now, corn is wonderful this way, but, if you’ve ever been to Mexico and happened upon a vendor selling Elotes, you know what you’re missing out on! It takes a little extra work and ingredients but the result is totally worth it! An elote is simply corn that is grilled and typically topped with mayonnaise, cotija cheese or queso fresco, chile powder or hot sauce (my favorite is tapatio), and lime juice.

First set your grill to medium high. Grill corn, rotating until hot and lightly charred all over, about 7-10 minutes. Then add toppings! These can vary depending on your taste. The traditional selection is mayonnaise (Mexican mayo tastes much better;) but you can use butter instead and some people add cilantro. I’ve also seen it where they mix all the topping together and then spread in on their corn that way, but I like to add them in layers. Enjoy!

If you don’t have a grill you can easily cook them in the oven! Here’s one take on it that I liked.