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How to Eat Your Box! (week of 11/6/16)

How to Eat Your Box! (week of 11/6/16)

Get to know: Zucchini!

I must admit, I never used to like zucchini. But I’ve come to realize that often, the problem isn’t what it is, but how it’s cooked! Now, I absolutely love zucchini because I’ve discovered ways I like to eat it. For example, I enjoy eating it raw! Who knew? It’s great in salads or with dip. I also like adding it to stir fry or making zucchini patties (see recipe link below–amazing!). The key for me was to shred or “noodle” my zucchini when I cooked it. Chopping it into chunks always yielded the same mushy texture that just didn’t suit me. Whereas, if I shredded it, suddenly it was a whole new experience. Also, it doesn’t need to cook long. I add it last to my stir fry or as the noodle to my “spaghetti”. Simply stir it in and turn off the stove. Experiment yourself to find how you like it best!

Lettuce-less Salad!

This week’s box may not include lettuce but don’t let that stop you. There are many health benefits to eating salad and it’s such a fun and easy way to get those raw fruits and veggies. Try one of these lettuce-less ideas using this week’s ingredients!

  • Apple Kale Salad: (Kale, Apple, Pear, Red Bell Pepper, Green onion, Carrot….) Recipe here.
  • Kale is just wonderful and it’s so good for you! It keeps well in the fridge, so you can make it ahead of time and not worry about it wilting. Kale can be a little tricky because it tends to be a bit tough and sometimes bitter. Here are a few tips that have helped me: make sure to remove all large ribs and stems (though these can make a great addition to a stir-fry!); chop the leaves small; sprinkle with salt to cut the bitterness; “tenderize” the leaves by massaging them with your hands (only takes about half a minute); and lastly, massage in the olive oil or salad dressing. This turns the kale bright green and makes it so it’s evenly covered. For the dressing, I like to use a combination of vinegar and olive oil. Once you have prepped your kale and worked in the dressing, add your toppings. Try apple or pear slices. Cashews, almonds and dried cranberries also taste great with this combination!
  • Cucumber Salad: Now we’ve probably all had cucumber salad at some point but I still tend to forget that it makes a great main ingredient for salad, not just as a topping. Try marinating thinly sliced cucumber, onion, bell pepper, crushed garlic cloves in a one to one mixture of water and white (or cider) vinegar and a tablespoon of sugar. Cover and let sit in refrigerator for a couple hours. If you leave it overnight the flavors come out even more! Drain and enjoy. Try adding a garnish of freshly chopped parsley or dill.

Roast in the Oven:

  • Rainbow Carrots: Rainbow carrots work wonderfully roasted in the oven because they tend to be skinnier and they have such a beautiful color so they look great too!
  • Acorn Squash: To bake, simply cut in half, remove seeds (save for roasting!), spread butter or coconut oil on the inside of each half, sprinkle with brown sugar, salt, pepper and any other desired spices (try cinnamon and nutmeg, or nutmeg and thyme) and bake for an hour (cut side up!). Oh, and don’t forget the seeds! They are so fun and yummy roasted! Or, try one of these recipes online!
  • Baby Bok Choy: For you Harvest and Vegetable box people Bok choy is on the menu! You can add it to a stir fry or try baking it! Here’s a great recipe I found online: Preheat oven to 450 °F. Toss Bok choy in about a tablespoon of olive oil, one clove of garlic (minced) and salt in a roasting pan. Roast on lowest rack, stirring twice, until wilted and tendercrisp, about 6 minutes. For added flavor, whisk lemon zest and juice of half a lemon, 1 ½ teaspoons tarragon, 1 teaspoon mirin and pepper (to taste) in a small bowl. Drizzle over the roasted Bok choy. Here’s a recipe for roasted baby bok choy.