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The Recipe Box: Chopped Kale Salad + Creamy Almond Ginger Dressing

salad_kale chopped2_edibleperspective.com_used by permission

This week’s recipe box features the ingredients for a recipe from Ashley McLaughlin, the person behind the inspiring blog over at Edible Perspective. I was looking for a recipe to feature the local kale we’d be getting in this week from our friends over at Ralph’s Greenhouses, and came across this one for a chopped kale salad paired with a creamy dressing – a fresh change up from the usual steamed or sautéed kale recipes.

Ashley’s salad starts out with the simple step of steaming and blanching asparagus, and then incorporates a healthy variety of textures and flavors in the form of more finely chopped (mostly raw) veggies. She then tops it all off with protein-rich quinoa and chickpeas, a creamy almond dressing infused with ginger, and finally some marinated Portabella mushrooms. Add a sprinkling of sesame seeds if you will. This is a very filling and satisfying weeknight meal. You can find the full recipe on her blog.


The Recipe BoxWe’ll plan, pack, and deliver…you cook and enjoy!

This box contains a recipe and all of the ingredients you will need for assembling a healthy meal for 4 people plus some additional fruit to enjoy.

This week’s featured recipe: Chopped Kale Salad + Creamy Almond Ginger Dressing

Chopped kale & cabbage covered in a creamy dressing (we’ve included directions for an almond dressing), and topped with marinated portabella mushrooms, more veggies, and chick peas. Trust us, it’s delish! Order your Recipe Box here.

Happy salad fixing!

Marty, for the Klesick Family Farm


Photos: Copyright © 2013, [Edible Perspective]. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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The Avocado

It was almost embarrassing how giddy I was about the rows and rows of avocado trees that lined the slope at the house I stayed at in California. I became known as the girl who eats avocado for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.. What can I say? I love their wrinkled skin that hides a soft, citron flesh. The taste is like grassy butter that slathers beautifully on toast or is great eaten alone with a squeeze of lemon plucked from the tree nearby.

I justified my avocado binging by saying I was making up for lost time. You see I wasn’t always an avocado fanatic. My infatuation began with guacamole and now I’m perfectly happy with an avocado and a spoon. As an adult I can now appreciate all the health benefits that comes with eating avocados. They are packed with protein, help to regulate blood sugar levels and protect against many types of cancer. They are indeed high in fat but it’s the sort of fat your body needs. It’s the sort of fat that makes your skin glow, your hair healthy and can be a nutrient dense replacement for butter in many recipes.

An avocado is in its prime when a soft nudge against the dark skin yields slightly. It’s neither too firm nor too soft. The exterior is uniform in color and if you carefully take a peek under the little cap where the stem was once connected it should look bright and green. If it is brown than the avocado will be brown too. If you want to speed up the ripening, store the avocados in a closed brown paper bag. Throw a banana in the bag to really get things ripening quickly.

As I walked through those avocado trees and stood there starry eyed at those branches dripping from the weight of the fruit I couldn’t help but envy California and the sun that makes avocados so abundant. But perhaps I wouldn’t appreciate them as I do now because for me, they are a luxury and one that I don’t take for granted. So when an avocado is in the kitchen I do my best to make sure it remains the star of the dish.

Here are a few ideas to make an avocado shine in your kitchen:


Grapefruit Guacamole: Dice two ripe avocados and mix with diced segmented grapefruit. Add a squeeze of lime and 1/4 cup or so of finely diced red onion. Add salt then taste and adjust.


Avocado Salad with Orange, Olives and Mint: Serve sliced avocado along with peeled and sliced oranges. Top with pitted and chopped kalamata olives and garnish with fresh mint. Serve alongside grilled fish.


Avocado Ice Cream: Because of the fat content, avocados turn into a creamy ice cream. Blend avocado with coconut milk (and cream if you’d like), add a bit of sugar, a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lime. Freeze in your ice cream machine or turn it into popsicles. Avocados also make smoothies taste like a rich milkshake.


Chilled Avocado Soup

Serves 4

1 avocado

1 1/2 cups vegetable broth (or more)

2 tablespoons lime juice

salt and pepper

Blend the avocado with the broth, lime juice and a pinch of salt. Taste and add more salt and pepper to your liking.

Garnish with cilantro, diced mango, diced onion, sliced melon, chopped tomatoes or peppers.

Serve chilled as an appetizer or first course.


Ashley Rodriguez

Food Blogger 

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Fresh This Week Tips 02.02.11

Red d’Anjou Pears – These are ready to eat now!


Refrigerate ripe pears for up to 5 days.


If you’re serving uncooked pears, cut them just before using; sprinkle the flesh with lemon juice to prevent browning.


Red D’anjous can be enjoyed like an apple, or try baking, roasting, sautéing, or poaching in wine; when cooking, use fruit that is still firm.



Avocados should be stored at room temperature to allow them to ripen to their desired stage. Place in a brown paper bowl or in your fruit basket to ripen them.

The avocados in this week’s box are a variety called Bacon Avocado. These have an exceptionally bright green color, even when ripe, and don’t store long, so enjoy within a day or two of delivery! Bacon avocados are known for their delicious string-free flesh & mild flavor. The fruit is typically softer to the touch than your usual Haas avocado, so be careful not to squeeze when handling. Test for ripeness by gently feeling the wide end of the avocado. There should be a slight soft impression when its ready to eat.


To peel, grip the avocado gently on one side with one hand. With a large, sharp knife in the other hand, cut the avocado lengthwise around the seed. Open the two halves to expose the pit. At this point there are a few ways you can proceed to remove the pit from the avocado half that has the pit. One way is to make another cut, lengthwise on the avocado half that has the pit, cutting around the pit, exposing it so that it is easier to remove. You can also use a spoon to scoop out the pit.

At this point, you can either scoop out the avocado flesh with a spoon (for making guacamole), or slice the avocado into segments. To make it more easy to scoop out the avocado flesh, take a small dinner knife and gently make cuts in the avocado flesh in a cross-hatch pattern, careful not to break through the avocado peel. Then use a spoon to easily scoop out the avocado pieces. If you are making guacamole, don’t worry about slightly discolored or brownish sections. Scoop them up with the rest of the avocado to mash.



Stored in a dark, cool place where air can circulate around it, garlic will keep for up to 2 months.


Remove the outer, papery layer of skin and pull off individual cloves. If they’re tight and can’t easily be pulled free, use the ball of your hand to press and roll the head against your cutting board to loosen the cloves. To remove the skin of an individual one, crush the clove lightly and swiftly with the side of a broad knife, use a paring knife to cut each end off, and then peel away the skin. When sautéing garlic, do so briefly and over low heat under close monitoring; burned garlic is bitter.

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