If this is your first time here, welcome! I’m pretty new at this too.
I’m still trying to familiarize myself with the inner workings of WordPress, so until I figure out how to beautify and streamline the page, I’ll mostly be relying on content to get this thing off the ground. Speaking of getting things off the ground, you’ll be hearing from me at least once a week, with plans to bring you more updates more often as I find my groove. Starting this Sunday be on the lookout for weekly updates about my adventures with food and cooking, getting ready for culinary school, and of course, recipes!
Here’s a recipe to officially kick off Beth’s Bites:
CSA Quinoa Bowl
I love my CSA! Community supported agriculture is probably the best way to dive into the summer and try out some new veggies that are locally grown and incredibly fresh. For those who are unfamiliar with CSAs, you pay an upfront sum for the growing season and in return, you receive a box of freshly picked produce each week. It’s a wonderful deal for both the farmers and consumers. Farmers know exactly how much crop to plant in the ground and bring to market, and they rest easy knowing they can weather any storm without taking a big hit to their income. For me as a consumer, it gives me an excuse to go to the farmer’s market every weekend and I feel like a VIP with a box of produce with my name on it ready and waiting. Membership with a CSA has also been a huge learning experience for me. Before I joined up for the first time last summer, I had no idea what a garlic scape was, but by the time fall rolled around, I had at least six new recipes for the curly-queued gems. Here in Iowa City Anden and I joined up with Echollective CSA, and in last weekend’s box we had a beautiful bulb of fennel and some green onions. My favorite recipes are often born by chance; a collection of ingredients on hand pulled together in serial instances of inspiration that coalesce into something unexpected and delicious. Today’s recipe is one of those happy series of instances that was a perfect summer treat.
1 medium fennel bulb with greens
2 green onions (or 1/2 large yellow onion)
2 tbsp coconut oil (or olive oil)
1 1/2 tsp whole coriander (or 1/2 tsp ground)
2 small turnips cut to the width of matchsticks
1 can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
3/4 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 1/2 cup low sodium vegetable broth
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/4-1/2 tsp sea salt, or to taste
3 tbsp quark cheese (optional)
1 tbsp pine nuts (optional)
Start with the quinoa. In a medium saucepan, bring the rinsed quinoa and vegetable stock to a gentle boil, cover and reduce to a simmer until all the liquid has been absorbed, ~15-20 minutes. Heat the coconut oil over med-high heat in a large, heavy bottom saucepan. If you have green onions, slice them into 1/4″ pieces (or 1/4″ dice for the yellow onions) and saute them in the heated oil until semi-soft, about 5 minutes. While the onions are on the stove, use a large chef’s knife to slice the fennel, bulb and greens, into 1/2″ pieces. Crush the coriander in a mortar and pestle, add it to the oil and onions, and fry it until it’s fragrant and golden. Add the fennel and chopped turnips, reduce the heat slightly and let the vegetables simmer for another 5 minutes. Stir up the veggies every once in a while with a wooden spoon, then shake the pan so they fall into a single layer and cook evenly. In the last minute or so of cooking the vegetables, add the kidney beans and some sea salt to taste. Splash the apple cider vinegar evenly over the veggies and let simmer gently for an additional 2-3 minutes. Fluff up the quinoa and divide it between three bowls. Top each bowl with the sauteed veggies and garnish each with about a tablespoon of quark cheese and a few pine nuts.
That was just a taste of what’s to come–see you on Sunday!