Prevent Garlic & Onion Tears

Chopping onions and garlic under running water or on a cutting board spritzed with lemon juice reduces tears. The water or lemon juice blocks irritating sulfur-based compounds from binding to our released common chemical sense.

Turns out that the human sense of smell includes a third pathway, called the common chemical sense.* (The other two are the olfactory sense and the nose-throat pathway.)

Common chemical sense works through thousands of nerve endings on the moist surfaces of the eyes, nose, mouth, and throat. These nerves help us sense irritating substances, such as the cool of peppermint, the burn of ammonia or the tears of onions and garlic.

* Source – NIDCD.NIH.gov

Roasted Acorn Squash Thai Style

The inspiration for this salad comes Thai dish called Kra Tiem.  Savory white pepper and garlic offset the sweetness of the squash.  The amount of white pepper is not a typo; it is the “spice” in this recipe, which is spicy in a different way than recipes using chile peppers.  Cooked this way the skins of the squash are soft and edible.

Serves: 4

Takes: 20 minutes

Ingredients

1 acorn squash
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon white pepper
salt to taste
1-2 cloves garlic
2-3 sweet peppers
garnish: roasted squash seeds, a drizzle of coconut milk and chopped lemongrass

Directions

Use a large knife or cleaver to carefully cut one acorn squash in half along its ridges.  Discard the stem and remove the seeds and pulp.

Slice the squash into wedges along the ridge lines.  Cut each slice in half again lengthwise; you want them about 1/2″ thick.  Toss the squash slices in a bowl with 2 T. olive oil and salt.

Arrange the squash on a baking sheet and roast in the oven.

Meanwhile, mince 1-2 cloves of garlic and thinly slice 2-3 sweet peppers to make 2 C. (removing the seeds and stems first).  Toss the garlic and peppers together with 1 teaspoon white pepper, ground medium.

When the squash slices are nicely browned on one side, flip each one.  Spoon the garlic/pepper/pepper mixture in between the slices in a shallow layer.

Continue to roast the squash until is browned on the second side, then stir all the vegetables together and roast for another 5-10 minutes.  The peppers and garlic should be fully cooked and starting to caramelize.’

Serve with chopped tomatoes, sliced cucumber and lime, cilantro sprigs and drizzle with Thai fish sauce or additional salt.

Pesto Avocado Tacos

These tacos look kinda green and lumpy but taste amazing. You’ll lick your fingers as you spoon the filling into the shells. Takes 20 minutes and serves 4.

Ingredients:

Pesto:

  • 2 cups of basil
  • 1 Tbsp. Miso paste
  • 1/2 lemon juiced
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • Water to thin out
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 Tbsp. Mexican seasoning


Tacos

  • 1 package of corn tortillas
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 summer squash (any variety)
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 1 cup tatsoi
  • Salsa

 

Directions:

  1. Make Pesto by placing all ingredients into a food processor leaving out the water,.
  2. Process.
  3. Then add water until a thick sauce is made.
  4. Set aside.
  5. Chop tomatoes and cilantro.
  6. Slice avocados.
  7. Next turn oven on to 300 degrees.
  8. Quickly run tortillas under water and shake off, lay a big piece of foil out flat and place tortillas on top of foil.
  9. Using another sheet of foil place the foil on top of tortillas.
  10. Place in the oven for 10-15 minutes.
  11. Next chop squash and onions into 1/2 inch cubes.
  12. Place in frying pan with a little water or oil so they don’t burn.
  13. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes.
  14. Add pesto to frying pan and stir to coat vegetables.
  15. Cook until warm and turn down to low.
  16. To assembly take a tortilla and place some pesto vegetables in the shell along with a tomatoes, cilantro, avocados and tatsoi.
  17. Top with salsa.

Thai-Style Cucumber Coconut Soup

My farm box overflows with cucumbers this time of year, and I love how this recipe combines them with Thai spices to make a savory soup that can be served warm or cool.

I first found this recipe on Suzie’s Farm.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 cups 1/4-inch-thick slices peeled lemon cucumber (or any other cucumber)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 small tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped
4 scallions, thinly sliced
2 red Thai chiles (with seeds), thinly sliced (or other hot peppers)
1 garlic clove, smashed
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
Fresh lime juice

Directions

Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add cucumber. Sauté until beginning to soften, about 1 minute. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Add tomatoes, scallions, chiles and garlic. Sauté until vegetables are soft, 2–3 minutes.
Add coconut milk and honey; simmer until vegetables are cooked through, 2–3 minutes. Stir in cilantro leaves and a squeeze of fresh lime juice. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve warm with rice, if desired. Else, chill for 2 hours and serve cool.

Get More Antioxidants from Garlic

Garlic offers numerous health benefits, from fighting colds and flu to helping wounds heal. To get more benefit from garlic, make these simple tweaks to your routine.

Dice, Then Wait 10 Minutes

Most people chop or press garlic and then toss it in a pan of warm oil. By allowing the chopped garlic to sit on the cutting board for 10 minutes, you will maximize the antioxidant levels, according to Jo Robinson author of Eating on the Wild Side. Enzymes in the garlic become activated after chopping, and by letting them do their work for 10 minutes, garlic becomes super charged.

Infuse Garlic Skins and Pieces in Olive Oil

Many people don’t digest garlic pieces well, evidenced by garlic burps after a meal. There is a way to avoid garlic burps and still get the immune system benefits. After letting chopped garlic sit for 10 minutes, sautee it in olive oil on medium-low heat for another 10 minutes. Toss in the papery skins, roots and all the other parts you’d normally throw away–these “trash” bits are higher in antioxidants than the bulb itself, according to Robinson.
Then strain the oil into a jar with a lid. Cover, store in a cool dark place, and use the oil as a garnish on finished dishes for all the flavor and health benefits and none of the discomfort.

Choose Carefully

At the market, choose garlic that has a hard neck, which contains higher levels of antioxidants than the more common soft neck variety, according to Robinson. Also choose bulbs that have the outer papery skin fully intact with no signs of mold.

Szechuan Green Beans

I love the crunchy sweetness of stir-fried green beans, and the dish compels me to slink into Chinese dives for a fix. This version from Whole Foods’ blog lacks the specific taste of a commercial wok, but it’s a fast and tasty rendition. Use the freshest, firmest green beans you can find for an easy side dish.

Ingredients

1 pound green beans, ends trimmed
1 teaspoon medium-heat oil (canola, peanut, macadamia, etc)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 garlic clove, chopped finely and set aside for 10 minutes (this maximizes the health properties of garlic)
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1 teaspoon soy sauce or tamari
1/2 inch piece fresh ginger, skin removed and finely chopped

Directions

1. Place the green beans on a baking sheet and broil about 10 minutes or until speckled with black spots. Rotate the sheet once halfway through. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and turn out the beans into a large bowl. Set aside.
2. Add oil to a small skillet over medium heat. Add red pepper flakes and garlic and cook about 3 minutes until golden. Turn off the heat and immediately add the vinegar. Swirl the skillet and then stir in the soy sauce.
3. Pour the garlic-vinegar sauce over the green beans and toss well. Toss in the ginger and serve.

Makes 4 servings. Takes 15 minutes.

Fresh Green Tomato Salsa

Green tomatoes arrive in my CSA box this week, and I love their rich tang. Blend them with alliums and cilantro in a food processor for a light and tasty salsa.

Ingredients

  • 3 green tomatoes
  • 1 spring onion (the bulb)
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1⁄2 bunch of cilantro
  • 1/2-1 jalapeno

 

Directions

  1. Place all ingredients into a food processor and process until smooth.
  2. Adjust heat to your taste.
  3. Drain juice through strainer and serve.

Steamed Kale and Carrots with Miso Sauce

Steamed Kale and Carrots with Miso Sauce appeared first on Filed Under: Gluten-free, Low-Carb, Low-Fat, Paleo, Side, Spring Tagged With: , , , ,

Garlic Roasted Potatoes

Garlic roasted potatoes are a wonder staple. Try them tonight with dinner, then mix up the leftovers tomorrow with balsamic dressing and eat with lunch.
Recipes first appeared on Foodnetwork.com .

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds small red or white potatoes
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Cut the potatoes in half or quarters and place in a bowl with the olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic; toss until the potatoes are well coated. Transfer the potatoes to a sheet pan and spread out into 1 layer. Roast in the oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until browned and crisp. Flip twice with a spatula during cooking in order to ensure even browning.
  3. Remove the potatoes from the oven, toss with parsley, season to taste, and serve hot.
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