Wrapping Up…

As autumn sets in around the farm, everyone and everything is preparing for winter. Tomato stakes are coming down, eggplants & peppers are sending out their last push, and the farm interns are saying their good-byes. This season is ending, and it is time for us to move on to our next adventure.

With that exciting, slightly nerve-racking thought, I’ve found comfort in root vegetables. Wrapped up in many different ways (or served on gluten-free bread, but that didn’t seem appropriate for this post…).

These wraps are not your average vegan/gf wrap, I’d like to think. Restaurants try to “make it work” by throwing on some lettuce, tomato, maybe some sauteed onions & peppers – regardless of the season. I usually have to request some pesto and “any other vegetables you are willing to throw on.” So I make my wraps as complete as possible: legumes, nuts/seeds, and chock-full of vegetables.

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First up: Collard Wrap with Groundnuts and Roots

I chopped up some carrots, sweet potatoes and parsnips, and braised them in a little vegetable broth. Then I added a peanut-coconut-ginger sauce, and a huge handful of parsley. That got piled onto a huge collard leaf atop some raw red peppers, and with a big handful of basil cabbage slaw on top of that. Very satisfying.

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Next up: Chard Wrap with Spicy Eggplant & Slaw

This was a collaborative wrap between me and another intern, Jeremy. I made baba ghanoush (roasted eggplant, garlic, tahini, parsley, lemon juice), and a quick “slaw” (kohlrabi, carrots, peppers in a lemon vinaigrette). Jeremy made his famous spicy eggplant with dill, and a delightfully hot sauce to pour atop everything. I’ll have to tell him to post his recipe, because I certainly couldn’t do it justice.

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And last but not least, Cabbage Rolls with Moroccan Spiced Roots & Tahini Ginger Dressing

Chop up as many root vegetables as you can get your hands on into thin strips. I used carrots, parsnips, jerusalem artichokes, potatoes, white yams and sweet potatoes. Roast them with a little olive oil, salt & pepper until soft. Let cool, and mix with chopped cilantro, parsley and mint. Lots of it.

Meanwhile, make the dipping sauce. Mix together tahini, tamari, ginger, garlic, scallions, a hot pepper or two, a bit of sesame oil, some rice wine vinegar and water to achieve your viscosity of choice.

Now get your cabbage ready to roll. Remove outer leaves, cut out the core, and steam until leaves soften, and peel off. Put a handful of root veggies in the center, top with some toasted pumpkin seeds, and roll like a Chipotle burrito. After you’ve got ’em all rolled, steam them for another few minutes to seal and heat through. Serve with dipping sauce, and be prepared for people to want seconds.

And that, my friends, is a wrap.

Vegetables: The New Noodle

No time to boil water for pasta? No problem. Just grab a couple summer squash, some carrots, and use a mandoline to create thin ribbons of noodliciousness. ┬áToss them with your favorite pasta sauce, a couple other vegetables, some toasted nuts or seeds and fresh herbs – you’ve got a quick, simple, and nutritious meal.DSC_0014

Carrot + Squash Noodles with Steamed Broccoli and Cilantro Tahini Dressing
2 medium carrots
1 medium squash
1 handful broccoli
2 T sesame seeds

2 T tahini
1 T vinegar (umeboshi plum, apple cider, lemon juice)
1/4 cup coconut milk or other nut milk
1 T minced ginger
1 T minced garlic
large handful cilantro
pinch salt

First make your sauce. Mix the tahini, vinegar, ginger and garlic. Add coconut milk until you reach your desired consistency. Add chopped cilantro, and season to taste.

Then cut or tear your broccoli into small florets. Steam until bright green and tender, but not mushy – between 5-7 minutes.

Meanwhile, use a mandoline to create thin strips of carrots and summer squash/zucchini. Eat them as broad noodles, or cut them into thin strips with a knife for smaller noodles.

Mix the noodles with the sauce and broccoli. Top with toasted sesame seeds and enjoy!

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