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Posts Tagged ‘summer fun’

CSA box Veggie Chili–this is prior to the last few minutes of cooking…almost ready. A one-pot dinner filled with many healthy, delicious, perfect bites!

In trying to use up the bounty of fresh veggies in creative ways…I’ve come across plenty of perfect bites (and a handful of not-so-perfect bites).

This recipe is so easy and a great way to use up the veggies from your weekly CSA box. The “Farmer’s Market Chili” is a veggie-packed chili is full of flavor and can be adapted to be a great vegetarian main meal. This particular recipe is just shy of being vegetarian. I used beef broth but substitute vegetable broth and your meal is vegetarian…don’t top with cheese or sour cream and you have yourself a vegan chili! The portions can be increased exponentially to freeze for the upcoming chilly fall and winter days ahead. As far as the specific veggies—improvise based on what you have on hand. The key is to incorporate a few different textures in the chili. Another added bonus: this is a one pot meal! Have fun and enjoy đŸ™‚

Simple Summer CSA Chili

3 medium zucchini, roughly chopped

2-3 medium/large yellow summer squash

1 bell pepper, roughly chopped

1 medium/large carrot, roughly chopped

1 small American eggplant (or…one small Japanese eggplant and one small white eggplant)

2 jalapeno peppers, roughly chopped (remove seeds to reduce spice level–use them to kick up the heat)

1 shallot, chopped

1 large clove garlic, chopped

2 cups broth (beef, chicken, or vegetable)

6 oz can tomato paste

28 oz can whole tomato (tear or roughly chop tomato, save all juice)

3 Tbsp chili powder

2 tsp ground cumin (fresh ground is best)

15 oz. can of beans (any type will do, I actually used chickpeas)

1 tsp salt

3 Tbsp canola oil (substitute 1 Tbsp bacon fat + 2 Tbsp canola oil if desired)

cheese and sour cream (optional for topping)

To make:

In a large dutch oven or other thick bottom pot, heat oil over medium high heat until shimmering. Add green peppers, jalapeno peppers, and diced carrot–saute until softened a bit. Add garlic and shallot, stir and cook 1-2 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir just until fragrant. Add eggplant, squash, zucchini, salt, cumin, and chili powder. Stir and saute for approx 1 minute–add 1/4 cup of the broth to de-glaze the bottom of the pan, continue to stir 1 more minute. Add tomatoes with juices, beans, and remainder of the broth. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer covered for approximately 15 minutes or until the veggies are done to your desired crispness. Add additional broth, wine, or water if chili becomes too thick. I prefer a thicker, chunkier chili but thin to your taste preference. Enjoy!

Optional: Let cool slightly, scoop into a bowl, top with a dollop of sour cream and cheese.

Farmer’s Market Chili

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Yes, it is just February and I am beyond the days of enjoying winter weather. This winter has been, and continues to be, a brutal New England winter. Sliding on the ice each day, mostly avoiding falls, schlepping around in mushy snow piles, and hoping to avoid facial frostbite due to severe winds (that actually make the curtains blow INSIDE my apartment) are just a few reasons why I am devoting this post to my love of New England spring and summers–wishful thinking is the only option at this point.

One of my absolute favorite things to do in the summer is to take road trips out of the city and hunt for the best clam and lobster shacks. The Boston Globe featured a nice overview of great places to get that summer seafood fix New England clam and lobster shacks – Boston.com.

I certainly have not tried them all but here are a few of my favorites:

Lobster Rolls and “Steamers”

Lobster Roll & "Steamers"

This is my favorite type of Lobster Roll–all meat, a little drawn butter, on a toasted bun. Other options include more of a lobster salad style that has a dressing (usually mayo based) which is certainly good too.  Also don’t overlook the classic “steamers” in the background. Another favorite of mine. These are usually soft shell, long-neck clams that have a wonderful sweet taste, with a subtle “sea” taste finish. The trick is to dip the clam in the water to rinse to remove some of the grit…then dip in the clarified butter. So delicious!!!!

Warmer days…..please come soon đŸ™‚

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