Tag Archives: carrots

What’s in the Box? #82

What's in the Box?

It’s officially Fall and I couldn’t be more excited.  Where as summer is my favorite time for fresh fruit, the colder months welcome the harvest of the most delicious veggies.  I love the abundance of leafy greens and sweet winter squash and do my best to celebrate their seasonal goodness by incorporating them into as many meals as I can (for the record, I’ve served butternut squash 4 different ways in the last week…that’s how happy I am that it’s fall!).

And my affection for autumn goes beyond the produce.  Now that I’m a mom, I actually look forward to Halloween again.  I love seeing Harper dressed up in her costume (which we purchased yesterday) and finding spooky activities for us to do as a family that give her the opportunity to wear it over and over again (got to get our money’s worth!)

Finally, I love fall because it’s my birthday on Sunday!  I can’t believe I am going to be 31 already.  Seems like just yesterday I was celebrating the big 3-0.  My how time flies :)

So in honor of fall, and in honor of my birthday this weekend, let’s party it up with some fruits and veggies!

Last week we had 8 link ups and it week was a great reminder of why I continue to host this link party.  For one, it’s nice to know I’m not the only person who gets overly excited about local and organic produce.  But more than that, your new and creative ideas on how to make use of it all never ceases to amaze me.  It’s no secret that I am a kale lover through and through.  And even with all the ways I have prepared it, I have never thought about putting it into fried rice.  Nothing short of genius Kirsten :)  Next, broccoli is a weekly staple in our house.  And although I often scramble it in my eggs, I love Sam’s idea of turning it into breakfast tacos.  Finally, I am sure we can all attest to the importance of onions in our lives, but did you ever know an onion could create such beautiful and delicious masterpieces?  Angie of The Novice Gardener has a gift of making ordinary things extraordinary.

Thanks to everyone for linking up and sharing their goodies.  Keep ‘em coming :)

And now for my first haul of fall…

What's in the Box? #82

Before I go any further, I have to bring attention to my tomatoes.  Do you notice the sad face on the top tomato?  He’s bummed that his season has come to an end.  So I have decided to make the best out of my last crop of tomatoes, and whip up a Tomato and Corn Pie.  Yum!  And on the side, a lovely green salad, with grated carrots, nuts and dried fruit.

I picked up some boneless pork ribs on sale yesterday. I have never cooked with them before, but was able to find a recipe I am really excited about.  When I was planning out the meal, I thought a side of green beans would compliment the dish nicely and lucky me, I got some fresh ones in my box this week…score!

I roasted up the potatoes tonight for dinner and they were delish.  I tossed them with minced garlic and melted butter and baked them with some chicken for an hour and the result was scrumptious.

Speaking of scrumptious…nothing makes me happier than a huge bunch of kale.  I am officially in heaven.  And I plan on making Kirsten’s fried rice with it for lunch tomorrow.  I have no doubt it will be perfect :)

And for an afternoon snack?  I’m looking forward to having some of that melon with a bowl of cottage cheese.  The perfect balance of savory and sweet.

Finally, fresh oranges.  Is there anything better?  I’m hoping we can hold out on them until Sunday, so I can enjoy a glass or two of orange juice with my breakfast in bed.

Your turn: What are some of your favorite ways to incorporate your CSA fruits and veggies into simple and delicious meals? Looking forward to drooling over your ideas.

Linking up for the first time? Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS: Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog. Thanks!

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What’s in the Box? #80

What's in the Box?

I think it’s safe to say, we are officially “OC” residents.  We have a library card (and have visited 3 times already!), spent an entire morning in line at the DMV in an attempt to get a new driver’s license (lost mine during our travels this summer) and Harper is enrolled in preschool.  Phew…it’s been quite a week, but everything is starting to fall into place.

Here is my little muffin on her first day at her new school… (in her chucks of course!)

Harper's First Day of Pre-School

(for the record, little miss came up with this pose all on her own.  I merely asked her to stand by the tree…)

And all the while, we have been enjoying our delicious and nutritious treats from our new CSA.  I have also been enjoying perusing over your CSA eats from last week.  We had 10 link ups and apparently it was all about the green.  Green beans, pesto, and green tomato bacon jam.  The perfect veggie color :)

Thanks to everyone who linked up and shared their awesome ideas with us.  Keep ‘em coming!

As for me, this is what I will be working with this week…

What's in the Box? #80And before we go any further, I have to mention the 3 garlic cloves that I forgot to place in the box before the picture.  Didn’t realize it until all the produce was put away…darn.

I am most excited about the figs!  I have never received figs in my box before, nor have I ever even tried one.  Not sure why, I have just never come across them before.  Looking forward to whipping up a savory dish with them that the whole family will enjoy.  Which means the garlic will come in handy for that recipe as well.  And Freddie and Harper can’t wait for a side of my famous mashed potatoes.

Next, 3 cheers for Thai basil!  It has been a while since I have gotten some in my box and I am looking forward to cooking with it.  It has such a lovely aroma and the flavor bursts in your mouth.

The taco salad last week was a big hit so I plan on duplicating that again.  I will chop up some of the tomatoes to throw on top in addition to some of those sweet peppers.

I am happy to see another bundle of grapes.  Our last batch went pretty quickly so I am hoping to experiment some more with recipes this week.

For the carrots, I have a great chicken recipe that calls for roasted carrots.  It’s a recipe I have been dying to share with you, so hopefully this will stand as a reminder for me to post it ASAP.

Speaking of roasting…love me some roasted cauliflower.  I roasted some last week for Harper to throw in with her broccoli and she LOVED it!

Your turn: What are some of your favorite ways to incorporate your CSA fruits into simple and delicious meals? Looking forward to drooling over your ideas.

Linking up for the first time? Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS: Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog. Thanks!

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What’s in the Box? #77

What's in the Box?

We are coming up on our last week in Santa Barbara.  And although Harper and I have enjoyed hanging with our friends and soaking in the beautiful summer weather, we are looking forward to going home and having our family back together.  But before we head out, I have made sure that we experience our favorite CSA a few more times.  The quality and variety of their produce helps to ease the pain of being homesick (I guess it’s no longer a secret what my drug of choice is…).  As does a rockin’ produce party :)

Last week we had a total of 12 links which yielded a whole lots of produce…especially tomatoes :)  I was most intrigued by Kirsten’s Kale Hummus this week.  I have been really into kale pesto this summer but kale hummus…mind blown!  I can’t get enough of the beauty that is Salted Plates Peach Caprese Salad.  Simply gorgeous.  And finally, I’m excited to try Eats Writes Shoots Vegetarian Tacos with Grilled Zucchini.  Yum!  Thanks to everyone for linking up.  I truly can’t get enough of your ingenious ways to eat your veggies.

And now on to how I plan to eat my veggies…

What's in the Box? #77

It’s boxes like this that make me miss my old CSA :(  I mean, there is so much delicious and summery goodness, it’s hard to know where to start.  But since this item is new to me this week, I have to highlight it first…

Mouse Watermelon Cucumbers

Have you ever seen something so adorable?!  They are mouse watermelon cucumbers and they are my new favorite treat!  Kind of a cross between a grape and a cucumber, that looks like a watermelon but is slightly slimy and sour in the middle.  But they keep me coming back for more :)  I have been popping these suckers in my mouth ever since I opened up my box.  They are crunchy and delicious and as soon as we start up another garden, these little gems will be front and center.  Love!

And then there are those red flame grapes.  Or as I like to refer to them, “nature’s candy”.  These grapes are so sweet and crunchy, they have been serving as my post meal treat.

I am also loving the assortment of pluots this week.  During the days of pluot abundance, I would have made my famous crumble. But these days, it has been a while since I have had the chance to sink my teeth in to one of these.  Now, I am savoring each and every bite :)  The Flavor Gold ones are by far my favorite!

I am excited about the melon.  I am assuming it is a cantaloupe but haven’t cut it open yet.  It is still a bit green so I am going to try to let it ripen up a bit.  But I am looking forward to scooping out the seeds and filling it with cottage cheese or plain yogurt.  A healthy and hearty mid day snack.

Speaking of snacks, Harper and I have been snacking on those monstrous carrots the last few days.  If there are any left I have the perfect dinner dish to make with them and am looking forward to sharing it with you.

I have been craving big, protein filled breakfasts lately and adding fresh spinach and tomatoes to a morning scramble is a great way to kick off the day.  Or, they might make into a quiche, in which case, a salad on the side would help to create the perfect lunch or dinner.

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :) 

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog.  Thanks!

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What’s in the Box? Recipe Roundup #13

What's in the Box?

Our last week in Branson was a blast!  We made sure to hit up all the local attractions before we headed out west.  Branson is known for their live shows and we were lucky enough to check out a few of them including The Price is Right LIVE.

The Price is Right LIVE

Harper could care less about winning a new car, she was all about the pretty model’s sparkly dresses :)

Branson also has a fun theme park called Silver Dollar City.  They have everything from rides, to live entertainment to crafty souvenirs.  It’s a great place to run around and enjoy yourself for the day (even when it’s 102 degrees!).

SDC

Finally, no trip to Branson would be complete without a ride on the ducks.  And I’m not talking about the ones that go “quack”.  I’m talking about the amphibious vehicles that were made famous during WWII.  This is Harper’s second time this summer riding a duck.  First as a viking during our trip to Ireland…Viking Duck

and now as a duckling herself…Ride the Ducks

Being a tourist is fun!

And of course we spent lots and lots of time with family.  Including, Harper’s new BFF, her Great Uncle John…

Holding hands with Uncle John

Harper and I are sure going to miss Branson, but are looking forward to another visit real soon :)

But enough about me, let’s talk veggies.

Last week we had a total of 13 link ups.  And to be frank, it’s summer produce at it’s best.  One of my favorite summer veggies is sweet corn.  And when you throw fresh kernels into a fresh batch of batter and deep fry it, the result is pure bliss.  (Speaking of deep frying, did you check out these crispy fried shallots?  The Angels are definitely singing for this one…).  Or you could toss it with some zucchini, leeks and a handful cheese and you got yourself an awesome summer pizza.  Oh, the possibilities :)  A big thanks to everyone who participated.  I just can’t get enough or your CSA goodness.

And because I am feeling extra sweet today (and in need of a sugar fix), here are some of my favorite CSA inspired desserts (in alphabetical order…).  Enjoy!

Apple Crisp

Apple Crisp - In Her Chucks

Beet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Beet Cake - In Her Chucks

Carrot Cookies

Carrot Cookies - In Her Chucks

Lemon Bars

Lemon Bars - In Her Chucks

Sweet Zucchini Cupcakes

Sweet Zucchini Cupcakes - In Her Chucks

Your turn: What are some of your favorite ways to incorporate your CSA fruits and veggies into simple and sinful desserts?  Looking forward to drooling over your ideas.  

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog.  Thanks!

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What’s in the Box? #74

What's in the Box?

 

One of the things I loved most about gardening, was that seeing all the time and effort that went into planting, watering and growing my own food, helped me to appreciate my harvest so much more.  It’s no secret that I have a deep affection for my CSA box, but after last week’s visit to my CSA farm, I appreciate it so much more!    

For one, the property was just breathtaking…

 

CSA Farm

Rows and rows of luscious fresh greens, just waiting to be picked and devoured.  

 

CSA Farming

 

I was so grateful to be given a personal tour by the director of the CSA program.  We walked through the entire journey of the veggies from the ground, to the cooler, to the delivery truck.   

CSA

 

And it all happens in one day.  Now that’s fresh!  

Harper and I had such a blast on our tour.  Looking forward to heading out for another visit soon :)

Now let’s take a look at what type of freshness the party goers have been whipping up.  Last week there were 8 link ups.  And my oh my are there some yummy dishes to brag about.  As much as I love my produce, I also love me some bacon.  Thanks to Jess from Hesitantly Healthy, I can enjoy some Easy Baked Brussels Sprouts, Red Potato and Bacon from the comfort of my computer screen…drool!  And Tammy from Agrigirl shared a beautiful and colorful Yellow Squash Gazpacho.  Finally, I am loving the simple and clean flavors of Brian’s Avocado Toast from Lettuce Never Squash our Love.  Thanks to everyone for linking up and sharing their delicious goodies.  You continue to spoil me :)

You know who else keeps spoiling me?  My freakin awesome CSA!  Check out this week’s haul…

What's in the Box? #74- In Her Chucks

Raspberries AND blackberries…SCORE!  And let me tell you…they are perfectly juicy and sweet.  Simply irresistible.  But I am working my self-control like never before because I have some delicious savory dishes planned for these little gems.  Hoping to get the chance to share them with you :)

Next up are the zucchini.  A HUGE favorite of mine.  Mostly because I can’t get enough of these Turkey Burgers with Homemade Zucchini Fries.  And getting another bunch of crunchy carrots worked out well too, since the burgers aren’t complete without them.  I topped the patties with white cheddar cheese and half of an avocado.  Oh, and some of that crispy green lettuce.  Dinner tonight was heaven.

There is no produce more beautiful to me than golden beets.  They are vibrant, bright and when the dirt and residue are washed away, they almost resemble a glistening gem.  My recipe of choice for golden beets is my Roasted Beets with Walnuts and Gorgonzola because they make the dish sparkle, but this week, my husband has requested beet fritters.  So fritters it is.  And with the fritters I will be serving a perfectly grilled rib eye steak and some of those enormous artichokes, which will also be grilled.

And finally, the leeks.  I am torn with the leeks because I have so many delicious recipes to choose from.  So I guess we will have to see where my taste buds take me this week.  

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog.  Thanks!


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What’s in the Box? #73

What's in the Box?

 

It’s 1am and I can’t sleep.  I pretty much feel like a kid on Christmas Eve.  “Why?” you might ask?  Well, tomorrow morning Harper and I are heading out to our CSA farm for a tour.  A dream come true really.  I can’t wait to see and smell all the glorious food, meet the wonderful people who work there and take a sneak peek at whats to come for the summer growing season.  Looking forward to sharing all the details with you later.

But enough about my insomnia.  Let’s get down to business…

Last week we had 13 link ups.  And two of them included ramps!  Even though week after week I have a variety of delicious and coveted fruits and veggies, I have yet to receive ramps.  But if I ever do, I will be sure to make Lettuce Never Squash Our Love’s Chicken Stir Fry with Ramps and Asparagus or Salted Plates Asparagus and Ramps Pizza.  Another dish I am lusting over is Agrigirl’s Roasted Beet Tart.  Looks absolutely divine!  Thanks to everyone who linked up and shared their goodies this week.  Keep the yummy recipes and pretty produce pics coming :)

Speaking or pretty produce pics…ain’t she a beauty?

What's in the Box? #73- In Her Chucks

I’m seeing green :)  And I love every bit of it.  I have to start with that giant Nappa cabbage.  It literally is the biggest piece of produce I have ever received.  Which means I am going to need a few ideas on how to prepare it.  Looking around on the internet I am thinking about a stir fry, maybe a soup and possibly a salad.  So many delicious options, I can’t go wrong.  And many of those recipes include fresh cilantro so I can go ahead and utilize two veggies with one recipe :)

I am loving these strawberries.  I went away for the weekend so I haven’t been able to finish off my last batch.  So in order to catch up I am going to have to make a few strawberry desserts.  I have that Fresh Strawberry Yogurt Cake on my mind, or possibly some Strawberry Scones.  Or I might go out on a limb and try something new.  Stay tuned to find out.

I am so excited to get another batch of carrots because while I was away this weekend Harper and I had the privilege of having dinner with a wonderful couple that prepared a killer meal.  I was able to find the recipe and have big plans to recreate it this weekend.  I can’t wait to share it with you guys.

Artichokes are nothing new to me, but I have never received such big ones in my box before.  I am usually stuck with the baby ones which are cute but don’t have much to enjoy.  These bad boys will keep our tummies happy for a while.  With Memorial Day around the corner, these will go great on the grill with an array of dipping sauces.  Yum!

I have recently gotten into breakfast sandwiches.  My friend Jenny introduced me to gluten-free bagels and they are simply amazing.  They are light and fluffy and make the perfect foundation for a veggie egg scramble complete with green onions, spinach and topped with cheese and fresh avocado.  Talk about a breakfast of champions.

And finally sugar snap peas.  A family favorite.  Tomorrow I plan on whipping up Pork Chops and Sugar Snap Peas with Mint Julep Glaze with a side of Mashed Red Potatoes.  I can taste it already :)

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog.  Thanks!


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What’s in the Box? #72

What's in the Box?

It’s been 2 weeks since we moved into our new home and we are finally feeling settled.  We spent the weekend hanging pictures, arranging furniture and exploring our new town.  The weather was beautiful so we decided to take a trip down to the local beach.  To put it simply…it was magical.

Beach

And watching my little beach bum playing in the sand, was the icing on the cake…

Harper plays

The weekend was also filled with lots of celebrating.  For mother’s day of course ;)  And not only did I get to sleep in until 10, I woke up to this lovely view…

Breakfast in bed

Gotta love homemade pancakes with a side of crispy bacon :)

And the celebrating continues as I received my first box from my new CSA this week.  Can’t wait to share the goodies with you.

But first, let’s take a look at last week’s party.  There were a total of 6 link ups, each one filled with loads of fresh, organic and local produce.  I am thrilled to welcome Sharlea of Fresh Veggies in the Dessert back to the party.  And was even more excited about her Grilled Artichokes.  Shalama from Views from Here shared a mouthwatering Cauliflower Crust Pizza (something I have been dying to try for a while now).  And Kirsten from Farm Fresh Feasts gave us the low down on how she makes her food look sooooo good!  A big thanks to everyone who participated.  I love reading through all of your posts.

After being without a box last week, I was starting to have some serious withdrawals.  Luckily, I was able to find a new CSA pretty quickly thanks to localharvest.org.  Not only is my new CSA cheaper than my previous one (by more than $10!) but the boxes are overflowing with even more goodies!  I couldn’t be happier.  Check out what I picked up this week…

What's in the Box? #72 - In Her Chucks

Holy nutritious goodness…right?  There was so much produce packed in that box, I had a hard time arranging it for the picture.  I am currently in fruit and veggie heaven :)  And not only did my new CSA provide me with great recipes, they also gave tips on how to properly store the items in this week’s box to maximize their shelf life.  Could it get any better?

So here’s what I plan to do with this abundant haul…

Harper dug into the peas right away.  My girl loves the green.  As soon as she saw them she grabbed a handful and started shelling them (before I could even snap a picture of the box…thank God there were more than enough to be photographed).  I have only gotten English peas once before and I can’t for the life of me remember what I made with them.  But I remember it was good.  So I will have to do some googling to figure it out :)

Once the pictures were taken, I grabbed a lemon and started zesting for this recipe.  And even though the lemon zest is a small component, it makes all the difference in the overall taste.  Delicious.  And on the side I steamed up some of the broccoli.  A household staple.

For breakfast this morning I sliced up some of the strawberries and ate them along with my oatmeal.  Best strawberries ever. No exaggeration.  They were juicy, flavorful and downright scrumptious.

I was excited to see a fresh bunch of spinach this week.  I plan on making this Chicken with Creamy Spinach and Shallots again because it is so simple but so good.

I have all the ingredients I need to make my killer kale salad (kale, lemons, avocados), but now I just need mouths to eat it.  It makes a huge portion and unfortunately Harper and Freddie aren’t kale fans.  I wish I could eat it all by myself but even my belly can’t hold it all.  I have plans to visit friends this weekend and might have to bring a kale salad along with me :)

For the beets, I think I am going to go straight for the roasting.  They are so sweet and earthy, it’s hard to resist.

Of course, the lettuce will make a great salad, topped with some sliced radishes, grated carrots, crumbled cheese and a handful of chopped nuts.  Might even throw in some grilled chicken breast if I am feeling really wild.

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog.  Thanks!


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