We got a lot of delicious goodies this week, like potatoes, bell peppers, lemongrass, acorn squash, pears, apples, lettuce, collards….
Acorn squash works exceptionally well as a “bowl” for thick stews or rice pilafs. For a seductive and hearty stew, cut the top (stem end) of the squash off (like cutting off the “lid” of a pumpkin). Roast. Make the stew separately and fill up the squash.
For the rice option, slice the squash in half lengthwise and roast. Prepare the rice dish separately and scoop it into the squash bowls.
This is a little time consuming because of the roasting time, but it is relatively simple to put together. Once you get it in the oven, it is a cruise.
To be honest, I wish I had time to make something this layered and voluptuous every night. Yet….my life is way too crazy for that! I am lucky if I get to make something this pre-planned and put together once a week. It is rewarding, though, to set apart some time in your schedule every once in a while for some special, sacred cooking time. Take your time to prepare your space by cleaning it and putting everything in order. Get out everything you need so you are not in a catch-up rush throughout the cooking process. Believe it or not, this makes your food taste better.
So when I don’t have so much time, I throw together some buckwheat pancakes or greek-style salad. Read on…
With the apples and pears I did several things this week. The easiest way to savor them is simply to snack on them. You can add fresh crushed almond butter to make a heartier treat. They can also be sliced to top buckwheat pancakes. (Or waffles–when I get a waffle iron for Christmas….) Buckwheat is a delicious way to make the pancakes “healthier” than using white flour but with a satisfying flavor. Try sweeting them with local buckwheat honey.
I recommend the arrowhead mills buckwheat pancake and waffle mix.
If you have a juicer, apple or pear can lighten and sweeten a green vegetable juice. Or you can mix in some ginger, citrus, and cucumber for a refreshing pick me up.
The tomatoes and bell peppers I always add to greek-style salads with arugula, kalamata olives, and avocado. My favorite dressing is a simple blend of lemon juice and olive oil. Grind pepper and pinch sea salt on top. To make this more filling, you can add a half baked potato. We always get creamy, melt-in-your-mouth potatoes in the share!
I have not used the lemongrass yet, but it is a delicious addition to soup such as corn or butternut squash. Slice a strip of lemongrass lengthwise but stop before you get all the way through. Mash the base gently with the flat side of a butcher knife. Add to your soup while it is cooking and remove before eating. More delicate than lemon juice or zest, lemongrass is an ideal flavor brightener.