As promised, I am getting back with you on the produce that will be available at Ben’s Produce stand tomorrow evening at Music on the Porch. It turns out Mother Nature has the same thing to offer us this Friday as last, except, sadly, minus the melons. Thus, we will have the following:
– pablano peppers
– sweet cubanelles peppers
– sweet bell peppers
– summer squash (including eight ball and flying saucer among the “regulars”)
Ben and I primarily eat home cooked meals. It is a rare event for us to go out to eat. So I know how difficult it can be coming up with something good to eat for dinner (or lunch or breakfast for that matter). We get all of our produce from the farm, so we have to be extremely inventive coming up with new and different tasting menu items, especially when it seems like all we have to eat are peppers. I thought I’d share with you the items we’ve come up with (or “stolen” from recipe sites on the world wide web):
Rachel Ray’s Fennel Pepper Spaghetti
This recipe calls for things beyond what we offer at the farm stand, but are likely to be things you have around the house. I really enjoy the fennel veggie version, but if you don’t have fennel seeds (which gives it a sausage-y flavor) and you do have ground meat (beef, turkey, etc.), you can always add it to the mix. Also, I changed this recipe up a bit to fit what we had available. Instead of using canned tomatoes (which we are going to can ourselves as use once that sad day comes when the tomatoes aren’t picked fresh off the vine), I used fresh tomatoes and let them simmer down (I added these to the whole vegetable medley last). Also, since we tend to like spicy foods (me more so than Ben), I also included one chopped pablano pepper in the mix. The vegetable does call for one green and one red pepper – I used the two different colors of the bell peppers we had. Finally, I prefer the flavor of vegetable stock over chicken stock (at least in a veggie dish) and used it instead.
I actually used the leftovers from the recipe above and put them (being sure to strain out the tomato juices and without the pasta) into a super tasty omelet, including swiss cheese into the mix (but shredded parmesan or mozzarella would probably be better – we had swiss in our fridge). It was really tasty! But if you’re not into using the leftovers (or you are out of them) for the omelet, chopped peppers are G-R-E-A-T in an omelet anytime! I treat omelets as a way to use up veggies that are on their way out, so I include whatever makes sense. I usually slice up a tomato to eat simple-style on the side with salt and pepper.
Last night we made yummy quesadillas for dinner. We actually prefer to make these using corn tortillas, but we only had flour tortillas in the fridge, so we used those. This time for cheese, what we had was a Mexican cheese mix. I sauteed a couple chopped summer squash (any variety will do – I used one green and one yellow to maximize the colors in our food), about 4 peppers (again, each a different color), one chopped onion and added a few basic spices that I like on my food. Then, all that needed to happen next was to melt a butter (or oil, if you prefer) in the pan on low heat, place one tortilla in it, then cheese, then the filling, cheese again (I like my cheese!), then the top tortilla. Let the cheese melt and the tortilla brown and flip. Do the same. We ate these with some vegetarian refried beans (I prefer these because they’re lower in fat and I like the taste better) on the side (with diced raw onions mixed in (I also like my onions). We happened to have salsa and sour cream in the fridge. This fed three of us (Ben, a friend and myself) and we even had leftovers!
I could keep going – and if anyone expresses an interest I can post more – but I should probably get back to work reading for class ;).
Thanks again for stopping by!