Late last week, I was reminiscing as I perused some of my old "Market to Table" posts. Every week has been filled with fabulous meals (I hate to call them recipes because I pretty much make things up as I go along), but I noticed a few things I haven't made in a very long time. So, I decided it was time to pull some of those oldies but goodies from what can only be called my insanity in the kitchen repertoire and do a little veggie magic.
Stuffed tomatoes - What was once only a summer dish can now be a year-round delight thanks to one of our farmers market vendors who runs a fabulous tomato greenhouse. I often wonder if I'm dreaming when I'm buying my winter veggies only to see those plump juicy orbs of summer goodness. Mmmm!
Right. Anyway, per my usual procedure, I just started pulling things from the fridge: brown rice, black beans (previously cooked), green onion, 2 tomatoes, collard greens, and mushrooms. While the brown rice steamed, I 1) cored the two tomatoes and set them aside; and 2) chopped the remainder of the veggies (including the tomato innards) and added them to a frying pan with a little olive oil and salt. Once the veggies were soft, I added the beans. Of course, when the rice was done, I stirred it into the veggie-bean mixture creating the filling. I filled each of the tomatoes and baked them in my toaster oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. As you can tell, they were so good, I had almost finished the first before I remember to take a picture. Good stuff and it's all local (well, except the salt)!
Stir fry veggies and mashed potatoes - Something else I realized I sorely missed was mashed potatoes. And with red potatoes on hand, it was an easy wish to fulfill. All I did was steam the potatoes in a steamer, then toss them in my KitchenAid mixer (peels and all - I love peels) with a little rice milk. Yeah, the rice milk isn't local, but I'm thinking I might try veggie broth next time (aka, the runoff from steaming other veggies like carrots and broccoli - I'm thinking it might add a nice flavor and it would definitely be local).
I used the mashed potatoes as a base for sauteed veggies (I'm a perpetual kid, always trying to mix my food up before I eat it). So I stir fried some collard greens, onions, carrots, mushrooms, and broccoli in olive oil and plopped them right on top of the mashed potatoes. Everything here is local except that rice milk and a little salt. Wish granted!
Rice and Veggies - Then back to my usual fare, though with new veggies every week, my meals are always just a little different. This week's highlighted rice dish started out with collard greens, onions, carrots, and mushrooms ; all sauteed in a little olive oil and placed on a bed of steamed brown rice. Again, everything but the salt is local. I have to say, I'm a HUGE rice fan and I never tire of these dishes.
Sweet Potatoes - Last, but certainly not least... remember all those sweet potatoes from the farmers market run? You can be sure I've been nibbling on them all week. All it takes is some chopped potato (bite size pieces), onions, mushrooms, a little salt, and some olive oil in a frying pan. Cook until the potatoes are soft and enjoy every local bite. It just doesn't get any better than this! (But then I have plenty of those 'taters left. I'm planning of whipping up some sweet potato soup soon...)
Of course, I've also been eating some wonderful Texas fruits like watermelon, grapefruit, and oranges; as well as sipping my morning all-local mint and sage tea. Now, look back at those photos. Not only does local food taste better than anything you can buy in the grocery, it looks pretty fabulous too! Should I expect anyone for dinner?
Have a great day, everyone! Don't forget to be fearless and try a little something new with your local produce. And, as always, Happy (and mindful) eating!