Once upon a time…I spent a few summers leading trips with teenagers in the back country of some national parks. A co-worker introduced me to pizza made on a pita. (It can also easily be done on a tortilla.) It was such a hit with the kids and so easy to make. It has since become a regular in my rotation. Pita Pizza By Bob Cat Ingredients: Pita Sauce (This time of year, why not use some of those fresh tomatoes?) Veggies of choice (Onion, Pepper, Broccoli, etc.) Cheese, shredded Instructions: Spread Sauce on Pita. Layer with Veggies and Sprinkle with Cheese. Bake for about 10 minutes at 350º or until Cheese is melted. *Image courtesy of: http://www.mygreekdish.com/recipe/greek-style-15-minute-pita-pizza-recipe/.
Every year, around August, the squash starts to grow faster than we can eat it, and we have to get creative with our preparations. The solution? Squash noodles! Spiralized Squash “Pasta” If you’ve been thinking about getting a spiralizer, it’s a really a great tool for using up all that Squash you get in your CSA boxes. You can turn the Squash into veggie PASTA! Add some fresh veggies or sauteed veggies, plus some tomatoes (fresh or in sauce form), and you’ve got yourself some really awesome pasta. *Image courtesy of: http://www.twirlybites.com/spiralize/spiralized-zucchini/.
“Curry Stew” can be made to fit your tastes by adding or removing vegetables to give it the flavor you want. This recipe will complement just about any veggie! Curry Stew By Bob Cat Ingredients: Potatoes Olive Oil Garlic, minced Ginger, minced Onions, diced Tomatoes, diced Carrots, sliced Peppers, diced Cabbage, shredded Kale, torn into small chunks Jalapeños, diced Curry Powder Cumin Turmeric Herbs of Choice Salt and Pepper to taste Instructions: Boil Potatoes in a large pot until fork tender. Drain and cut up into large cubes. Heat Olive Oil in stock pot. Sauté Garlic and Onions until translucent. Add Ginger, Tomatoes, Carrots, Peppers, Cabbage, Kale, Jalapeños, and Potatoes. Season with Curry Powder, Cumin, Turmeric, Herbs, Salt and Pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer. Cook until vegetables are tender. *Image courtesy of: https://eatingrules.com/curried-vegetable-stew/.
These spring rolls just taste like summer. They’re cool, light, and crisp. I usually make the peanut sauce first, using a food processor, and the base of this sauce can double as a great salad dressing! Unfortunately, this is a perfect example of how I’m not much of a recipe follower. Use the suggested ingredients below in whatever quantities appeal to your taste buds. Let your stomach be your guide. Fresh Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce By Bob Cat Ingredients: For the Sauce – Garlic Ginger Olive Oil Sesame Oil Herbs (Use whatever is available – Cilantro, Basil, Parsley, Thyme, Sage, Dill, Oregano, etc.) Apple Cider Vinegar Soy Sauce or Tamari Hot Sauce (I prefer Sriracha.) Lime Juice (Optional.) Spices (Salt, Pepper, Garlic Powder, Chili Powder and/or Cayenne, etc.)* 1-3 tbsp. Peanut Butter (Use to taste, depending on how peanut-buttery you like things.) Water (I usually add a splash to make it go further, but it depends on what kind of consistency you like.) *If you stop right here, this makes a really awesome salad dressing. For the Rolls- Veggies of choice, chopped finely (Whatever you have will do – Cabbage, Kale, Chard, Lettuce, Spinach, Onions, Peppers, Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Radishes, Carrots, Beets, Turnips, Scallions, Avocados, etc.) Rice Noodles/Bean Threads, cooked (Optional.) Rice Wrappers, softened in a pan with a little hot water (You can find these at most grocery stores or health food stores in the Asian section.) Instructions: Lay Rice Wrapper flat. Load up with Veggies and drizzle with sauce. To create roll, bring bottom triangle of Wrapper up and lay on top of Veggies. Wrapper should stick to Veggies. Then, fold the two sides in, so edges stick to bottom piece of already folded wrapper. Finally, fold top triangle down. *Image Courtesy of: http://blog.eatnuts.com/recipes/appetizers/item/thai-spring-rolls-with-almond-dipping-sauce.
Hey, Everyone! Bob Cat here – Main Street Farms’ co-owner, farm manager, and lead educator. When my good friend Allan asked me to come help him start Main Street Farms 5 years ago, my main incentive to come aboard was…THE FOOD. I had little farm experience back then, but I had been eating my whole life and cooking almost just as long. Coming from an Italian background, I learned at an early age the value of good food made from real, natural ingredients. I couldn’t have dessert until I finished my veggies, so I quickly learned to love veggies. I have been dating a vegan for almost 2 years now, so my love of veggies (and ability to grow them in abundance) has really come in handy. Still, it can be easy to get overwhelmed by all the veggies. It’s important to keep it simple. Every item that comes in your CSA box can easily be broken down into 2 categories: SALAD or STIR FRY. Ask yourself: “Do I feel like cooking tonight?” If yes, fire up the wok (or large frying pan), sauté some veggies, add your protein of choice, and make some rice or noodles. Not in the mood to cook? Start chopping whatever is available, toss it on top of some lettuce, and you’ve got a salad! Speaking of proteins, I love meat as much as the next person, but there are a lot of other options out there if you are getting tired of always deciding between beef, chicken, pork, lamb, or fish. Try substituting some tofu, tempeh, seitan, beans, falafel, or other protein/meat substitute. Throughout this week, I’ll be sharing some simple meal ideas that are common in my rotation: greens and beans, hummus and veggie wraps, taco salad, fresh rolls, curried lentils, spiralized squash “pasta,” chili, nachos, sushi, falafel, pita pizza, and cucumber-tomato salad. Expect rough outlines of how I make these dishes – I’m not much of a recipe follower; I just follow my stomach, so I apologize if I’m not very specific with quantities. Most of these are made vegetarian but can easily be made with your meat of choice. Hope you enjoy!