We have been having an abundant of basil, and our freezer is quickly filling up with pesto among other things. We needed to find a way to go through our basil quick. The Taiwanese three cup chicken dish came to mind. We took the quick way of making it due to our limited time, but it’s still delicious nonetheless.
Chopped garlic are cooked over heated vegetable oil with a couple spoons of sesame oil. Then bite size chicken go in. Toss chicken around until it’s brown. Add a cup of soy sauce, half cup of sugar, and half cup of rice wine. Turn the heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes. Toss in a cup of chopped basil at the end. Serve with rice.
Someone gave us a recipe for Squash Blossom Soup a while back, but we have been holding out for our own ingredients that we are growing. We finally had all ingredients when we harvested our corns recently. Yes, the mushrooms too! The mushroom is an experiment we had this spring and we are surprise to see them already fruiting. We just have to fight with the slugs for them.
Tomatillos, the forgotten fruits! We have been so busy with the tomatoes that we totally forgot about our tomatillos. It’s unfortunate because they are just as delicious! I decided that they need to get their way into our meals somehow. It has to be simple and quick! That the requirement for our meals lately. So I pull out the slow cooker! I throw in the tomatillos, chicken, garlic, onions, bit of lemon juice, salt and peppers and let it do its thing. A few hours later, we savored the sweet but tangy flavor of the tomatillos that soaked into the tender chicken meats. Just fabulous! Wanna try it? I roughly put together the recipe at https://sweetbriarfarmwa.com/2016/08/26/simple-crockpot-tomatillo-chicken/.
It’s all about quick and easy when it comes to cooking since we are so busy with not only harvesting, but also planting fall vegetables. This summer pasta salad is perfect since it takes very little time to prep, it uses a lot of our current vegetables, and it’s delicious!
The core ingredients are pasta, vegetables, and herbs.
First, cook the pasta. Since this dish is served cold, cook the pasta just a little bit longer than it would be for hot dishes. Drain and cool. For vegetables, we use what are fresh in the garden. Today, we have fresh lacinato kales and sweet sun gold cherry tomatoes. For herbs, basils is best. Herbs and kales are julienned, and tomatoes halved. Mix them all up with pasta, olive oil, salt and black peppers to taste. We also tossed in some diced sausages and shredded cheese but these items are optional. Cover and chill in fridge for about 30 minutes before serving.
Other vegetables we have used include shredded carrots, sliced radishes, beans and collard greens. Other herbs we have used are mint and parsley. But be adventurous, experiment, and use what’s in season!
Cabbage is one of my favorite vegetables. I like it in any form of cooking, soup, stir-fries, and fresh. With the hot dry spring, the cabbages were struggling along. The week before, we got a heavy loads of rain and the cabbages doubled in size over night. It’s time I reap the benefit of all the hard work. I decided to make a salad with a very light dressing so that it doesn’t overpower the flavor of the cabbage. What’s better way to accomplish that than with my Vietnamese salad dressing that I always have prepared in the fridge.
First, I sliced some shallots very thinly and soaked it in a mixture of vinegar and sugar for about 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, I shredded the cabbage, thinly sliced some red peppers, chopped up some cherry tomatoes, then mixed in some chopped Vietnamese coriander. All got tossed together including the sugar vinegar onion mixture just before serving. Serve with my “secret” recipe of Vietnamese salad dressing.
I’m so happy to finally eat vegetables that I grow again.
Leek scape is the flower stalk of leeks which usually come up during Spring. It has a subtler leek or onion flavor. Even though it is not popular in grocery stores, it is a very versatile vegetable.
We have been getting a lot of them from our leeks in recent weeks. We have used them in stir-frys, soups, and fresh in salad. Here is our latest experiment with leek, creamy leek pasta sauce.
Chop up the leek scapes. The younger they are the more tender.
Quickly cook them with oil and butter. We add some chicken in there for extra yummy. Toss in cream at the end. Season to taste. We usually cook with what we have and what we happen to have some tomato basil spaghetti to toss this on top. Oh, and we shred some cheese and slide some fresh radishes as final touches. Yum!