Smashed Beets with Crispy Sunchokes, Arugula, Lemon Vinaigrette, Fresh Mint + Thyme

This is the time of year to experiment with alternative holiday dishes. I love the Thanksgiving spread of biscuits, stuffing, roasted vegetables, turkey, etc., but I always end up wishing I’d replaced a few of the traditional dishes with lighter, fresher, more interesting options. This dish was inspired by my recent fascination with smashing potatoes. I just like dishes better when you get mixed up in the creamy, crispy, salty, sweet, lemony bits and such. I made this dish, had a tiny sample plate, and walked away for just a moment. When I came back upstairs it was gone; devoured wholly by my boyfriend who left not even a trace of crispy goodness in the skillet.

I used baby chiogga and red beets, but if you’re making this dish for more than two people, use either more baby beets, or bigger beets, or whatever you can find. This is, so far in my life anyway, my favorite version of beets. They are crispy, while maintaining a creamy inside, and the lemon and arugula add such a freshness and lightness to the dish.

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Smashed Beets with Crispy Sunchokes, Arugula, Lemon Vinaigrette, Fresh Mint + Thyme

Inspired by Bon Appetit

Prep: 15 min    Cook: 1 1/2 hours     Serves: 2

12 baby beets-8 chiogga, 4 red
8 small sunchokes, sliced thin
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
Olive oil: for drizzling, baking & vinaigrette
Fresh mint & thyme
1 handful arugula
Sea salt & pepper
Maldon-flaky sea salt

1. Heat the oven to 400°F . Place the beets on a baking sheet and drizzle with oil and a grind of sea salt. Roast for 30-45 minutes, or until they are slightly browned. Adjust roasting time depending on the beet size.
2. After the beets roast for about 20 minutes, add the sunchokes to the baking sheet, roast with the beets until everything is somewhat golden, but not too browned.
3. In the meantime, mix the vinaigrette: lemon zest, lemon juice and 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium bowl.
4. Remove the beets and sunchokes from the oven. Allow the beets to cool slightly, and then gently rub off the skin. It helps to use a paper towel. After removing the skin, crush the beets with the bottom of a small bowl.
5. Heat a skillet over medium-high and add a tablespoon or so of oil. Place the sunchokes and beets in the skillet. Brown the beets and sunchokes on one side for about 4 minutes, then flip and brown the other side. Put the crisped sunchokes and beets in the bowl with the vinaigrette, add a small handful of fresh mint and thyme and toss to coat.
6. Place the arugula in the still hot skillet and stir until it just begins to wilt. Add the sunchoke-beet mix back to the hot skillet, add a grind of Maldon and pepper and serve immediately.

 

Cilantro Lime Coconut Curry with Chanterelles, Fresh Ginger + Avocado

IMG_2289 IMG_2270-001 S IMG_2274This soup made my house smell like fresh ginger and cilantro and lime in such a gentle and refreshing and rather uplifting way. And this was good, because the onion I used, bought from the farmer’s market a few days ago, it made me basically weep. I’ve had the occasional onion make my eyes watery, but this one forced tears to stream down my face. I had to walk away and compose myself. My suggestion is to use a gentler onion, like a white one, or a shallot, but I guess I was starting to think I’m immune to oniony induced emotion and this one put me in my place. This recipe can easily be doubled to feed a crowd, and you could add chicken or pork belly if you have it on hand. The avocado is essential as it balances out a pretty citrusy soup and adds depth, but the rice is optional as well. It is also quite good topped with those rice sticks you find at health food stores and a good grind of fresh black pepper. Oh and I did also just happen to have chanterelles on hand, which is something that has never really happened to me before, as lovely as they are I would happily use shitake or maitake mushrooms in their place.

Cilantro Lime Coconut Curry with Chanterelles, Fresh Ginger + Avocado
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
2 inches peeled fresh ginger, chopped
4 baby sweet peppers, or 1 big red pepper,  seeds removed + sliced
1 zucchini, halved and diced
1 handful chanterelles, sliced
1/2 jalapeno, seeds removed, chopped
2 long pieces lemongrass, chopped
1 tablespoon yellow curry paste
1 lime, juiced
1 can full fat coconut milk + 1 can amount of water
1/4 cup brown or wild rice
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped + extra for garnish
Butter + olive oil
Salt + pepper
Avocado

Add a tbsp of butter to a deep saucepan over medium heat, add the onions and cook about 15 minutes, or until translucent.
Next add the ginger, peppers, carrots, zucchini, mushrooms, jalapeno and lemongrass. Stir and drizzle with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Cover and allow to cook for about 5 minutes, then add the curry paste, stirring again.
Add the lime juice and pour in the full can of coconut milk plus a can sized amount of water. Turn heat to medium, add the rice to the soup, cover and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes.
Stir in the cilantro, and taste for seasoning, adding olive oil, salt and pepper if needed. Test to make sure the rice is fully cooked, and serve with sliced avocado, cilantro, a grind of pepper and drizzle of olive oil.

 

 

 

Roasted Carrots with Beet Greens, Kale and Manchego

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 This simple dish is another successful use of excess carrots. It is so easy and uncomplicated and pretty–my favorite kind of mid-winter (that feels like summer) dish.

Roasted Carrots with Beet Greens, Kale and Manchego

 5-6 small carrots, halved vertically, and sliced at an angle
Olive oil
Sea salt and pepper
Dried thyme
Handful of kale, chopped
Handful of beet greens
Manchego cheese, sliced
lemon juice

Oven 425. Roast the carrots with oil, salt, pepper and a sprinkle of thyme until they are browned and shrunken some in size. Stir them occasionally. When the carrots look like they are done, add the greens, drizzle with salt, pepper, oil and lemon juice, and bake for another few minutes. For the last bit of roasting, add the manchego and roast until the greens are crisp and the cheese has melted.

Roasted Potato and Carrot Paratha

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My vegetable drawer is filling up with carrots and sometimes I get in a carrot rut where I don’t really know what I want to do with them. Today I was determined to find a way to enjoy eating carrots in different ways because I have so many. You could serve these paratha on their own or as the side dish with some kind spicy Indian dish. They are not overwhelmingly carroty, the potatoes and spice balance them and the ginger adds a little heat.

Roasted Potato and Carrot Paratha

Paratha:
2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 tsp sea salt
3 tbsp olive oil
water, as needed

Filling:
5 small potatoes, chopped and roasted with salt and pepper at 425 until browned, about 40 minutes, you can also boil the potatoes
2 cups grated carrots
1 ½ tbsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
Handful of chives, chopped
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp garam masala
sea salt and pepper

Butter
Coconut oil
Plain yogurt
Lemon juice

Method:

Mix the flour, salt, oil and water and knead briefly and then cover under a damp towel.

Add some oil to a cast iron skillet, add the ginger and chives, and then after a few minutes add the carrots. Finally add the potatoes and the rest of the spices and mix thoroughly.

On a floured surface, roll out a small piece of dough to about a 3” circle, then add the filling into the middle, close the dough in at all sides, and then roll out again to a 6” circle.

Place a skillet on high heat and add some coconut oil and butter. Fry the paratha on each side until slightly browned and crisped.

 Serve with a drizzle of plain yogurt, a squeeze of lemon juice, a handful of chives, sea salt and pepper and your favorite chutney, I used a plum chutney my mom made that was incredible.

Millet-Quinoa Patties with Kale, Spinach and Heirloom Tomatoes

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This dish is a result of having just a little bit of quinoa left, lots of millet, tomatoes that needed to be used and plentiful greens. You can really do endless variations with patties using panko, other grains, rice, etc. The tomato’s I have are so flavorful and sweet they taste like candy and pairing them with the patties was complementary and complex, sweet and savory. The sweet balsamic is really essential, if you don’t have any on hand just mix some honey with some regular balsamic and you will have a similar tasty, thick syrup.

Millet-Quinoa Patties with Kale, Spinach and Heirloom Tomatoes

½ cup quinoa, cooked
1 ½ cups millet, cooked
1 small red onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup kale, chopped
1 cup spinach, chopped
¼ cheese: mozzarella and a flavorful goat cheese, like Midnight Moon; grated, or in small pieces
3 eggs
3 tbsp milk
Salt & pepper
Butter
Olive oil
Sweet and thick balsamic vinegar
1 heirloom tomato, sliced

Method:

Mix the cooked quinoa, millet, onion, garlic, kale, spinach, cheese, eggs, milk and salt & pepper together in a bowl. The mix won’t hold together until it’s cooked so it’s okay if it seems crumbly. In a cast iron heat about ½ tbsp of butter on medium high heat. Place round spoonfuls of the mix into the pan and fry them in the butter until they’re crisp and browned. Carefully flip the patties and repeat on the other side.

Continue adding butter and frying the patties. I made about 12 patties from the recipe.

To serve, slice a ripe heirloom tomato. Place two patties on top of the tomato and drizzle with a sweet balsamic vinegar.