“I wonder if you can eat carrot tops.” That was my thought when I looked at those very pretty greens on top of gnarled carrots. Seemed a waste to toss them. I mean, we eat turnip greens and beet greens, right?
To Google it is. YES, you can eat carrot greens. They are incredibly nutritious too, full of Vitamin K and chorophyll. And the coolest thing here is that they don’t necessarily recommend you eat carrot greens unless you buy organic, which is what we’ve got here!
So, the list this week:
- Carrots (with tops)
- Kale (a bunch of curly kale)
- Lettuce (romaine)
- Squash (3 pounds)
- Zuchinni (3 pounds)
- Broccoli (a gigantic head)
- Cucumbers (3)
- Cabbage (red AND green)
- Beans (1 pound)
- Peppers (1 green, 1 something else probably hot)
- 5 POUNDS of peaches (which is a lot of them!)
- 1 pint of blackberries
- 1 cup of blueberries (that fruit share rocks)
Friday was my birthday, so we went to Brioso, which is always yum and didn’t fail to deliver. I had the spinach salad, because it had local strawberries on it AND because we also ordered up a slice of the Italian cream cake. Holy smokes, that is a decadent piece of cake. It wasn’t big, necessarily, but it was delicious. Walnuts, coconut and the icing was cream cheese. An excellent birthday cake and it was only one slice, so it’s not hanging around the house now.
Thursday, we had gone to SideTracked, another local favorite, and the kid had their catfish po boy. She ate that sucker up like it was, well, a slice of Italian cream cake. So, the husband (who still worries about the vegetarian thing) suggested we try this. After I picked up the farm share and saw you could use the carrot tops AND the pesto was really good on fish, well, we had a meal. Here’s what we did:
- 4 white fish fillets (we used cod, bc it was USA fresh caught)
- 1 pound of shrimp (couldn’t resist NC wild caught shrimp!)
- 3 rolls (bought from the deli, meh, it worked)
- Romaine lettuce (from the farm, of course!)
- Carrot pesto
- Mayo, if you like
I lightly seasoned the shrimp with some adobo (which is garlic salt) and the husband seasoned the fish fillets with the cajun seasoning from Emeril. BAM! Then we grilled them. Then, we assembled them. Done.
The carrot pesto was as follows:
- 1.5 cups of carrot tops, leaves only. Don’t use the stems.
- A handful of walnuts
- 2-3 garlic cloves (ours was VERY garlicky)
- Some salt
- Olive oil to get to the consistency you want
- Maybe some water if you don’t want to use that much olive oil (which I did add water)
- A bit of maple syrup (the greens are very sharp and tangy and this helps take the edge off while still being very warm)
Toss everything in the food processor except the oil and water. Add those until you get the consistency you want.
And, the trifecta, we used the red cabbage too. That’s from a cookbook my daughter bought at McClure’s for a Christmas gift: Coastal Living Cookbook. You slice half a head of that into ribbons and toss with dressing:
- 1/3 cup olive oil (use good oil here)
- 1/4 cup white vinegar (I used white balsamic)
- 1/4 cup water
- Basil and oregano to taste
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Garlic clove, minced
Drizzle the dressing and mix in 4 ounces crumbled feta.
Dessert? Why a peach of course!
Sunday is a big cooking day for me. I’ve been freezing at least one meal, so that we can enjoy these great veggies later on in the fall. So far, it’s been a lot of soups and pestos. Ready made soup in the fall is going to rock! Now I’m not the biggest cabbage fan in the world, so I figured these two recipes might be a good way to deal with the massive amount we got this week. (I mean, seriously, who eats two heads of cabbage in a week?)
Cabbage White Bean Soup
This one is from a blog a friend of mine pointed out to me: fat-free vegan. Now I don’t necessarily follow her rule of “no added fat” but she does have some excellent recipes out there. I’ve made the broccoli rice casserole and everyone loves it. It made an excellent Thanksgiving entree last year.
I made this in the crockpot, which this recipe makes SO MUCH SOUP that I had to add the beans later on. That was simple enough: we all know how I did this: pressure cooker! Is there any other way? Oh, and I didn’t use parsley, so I used … wait for it … CARROT GREENS!
The family jokes that this one can only be eaten on the weekend, when we won’t make public appearances. A little Beano will help too.
Sweet Potato Cabbage Rolls
My first attempt with cabbage rolls was kind of disappointing, so I thought I’d try again. (My husband is urging me to give this food away, but I swear, I think I’m cheating if I don’t use at least some of everything.) I love sweet potatoes, so I googled and lo and behold, someone’s already done this. Husband doesn’t like sweet potatoes, so we made two sets: one with the sweet potatoes and one more traditional: corned beef and potatoes (if you want that recipe, you’ll have to ask him.) Since it was a small head of cabbage and my husband was using half of it for his corned beef rolls, I only did one sweet potato and a small apple. I also didn’t use quinoa. Not because I have a problem with quinoa; rather, there just weren’t any more burners to use! We were cooking up a storm! So I used bulgur instead. These went straight into the freezer: each wrapped in foil and then put in a baggie, with a label.
Bella helped me with the labeler and had a little fun with it herself.
Kale Stir Fry
But NONE of this cooking was what was for dinner. Dinner was a stir fry, using the carrots, broccoli and kale. Here’s what I did:
- 1 leek
- Carrots (in this case, the bunch from the share)
- Broccoli (in this case, the bunch from last week)
- Kale (in this case, a little more than half of the kale we got, the other half being used for smoothies)
- Ginger … I probably used a good tablespoon, but it was very gingery
- Garlic, a clove or two
- Stir fry oil (or oil of your choice)
- Sesame oil, a teaspoon
- Rice vinegar, a couple of teaspoons
- Soy sauce, to taste
- Chinese five spice, a teaspoon
Chop up all the ingredients. Heat the oil and saute the ginger and the garlic. Add the spice. Toss in the leeks, carrots and broccoli and stir fry for a minute. Add the kale and toss until covered. Add the oil, vinegar and soy sauce and cook until kale is tender. You could cover it to wilt it more, but we didn’t.
It was really good! Nothing like fresh veggies to make a stir fry shine.