Jun 18, 2009

Farm Direct Co-op

It's one of my favorite times of the year again- my food co-op has begun! I now get fresh local produce every Thursday until some time in October. I truly love eating with the seasons and discovering new local veggies. I also like how it forces me to cook and eat good food. And I save money at the local supermarket. Not to mention the environmental and health benefits to eating local.

Last week we received red leaf lettuce (2 heads), a pound of spinach, some beautiful bok choy, and a choice of salad turnips or radishes (I chose radishes). So many greens- whats a girl to do? Well, for starters, I've been making salads all week. My father gave me some fresh, peppery arugula from his garden, so I made a mix with the spinach and lettuce, added sliced radish, grated parmesan, and olive oil for a quick healthy lunch. I added most of the spinach to an improv mac and cheese dish, which turned out great (recipe below). Last night I made a miso based, Asian-inspired soup which included much of the bok choy, as well as carrot, broccoli, baby corn, tofu and thin rice noodles. Today, I added lettuce to our sandwiches. And, I still have a head of lettuce, two radishes and a little less than half of the bok choy left. I'll have to invite some friends over for dinner soon to eat up my veggies.

Spinach Mac & Cheese
  • Prepare your choice of pasta. I used 12 ounces of a soy, rice, quinoa pasta that was quite nice. Drain and set aside.
  • Heat olive oil in pan on a med-low heat, saute 2-3 cloves chopped garlic, some optional red pepper flakes, then add 1/2 lb to a lb of chopped spinach until just wilted.
  • Add pasta back to pan
  • Here is where the cheesy magic starts :) I added chopped Asiago cheese and stirred until it started getting melty. The amount is subjective. I only used 3 slices of cheese, because Asiago has such a strong flavor. You can certainly add more. Just remember to chop it up small so it melts quickly.
  • Add milk or unsweetened soy milk slowly until the mixture gets creamy instead of lumpy and stops sticking to your spoon.
  • I also added salt, pepper and a few tablespoons of nutritional yeast.

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