Tag Archives: farmers markets

Gazpaco Soup Shooters

Gazpacho Soup Shooters


A Classic Spanish soup with all the flavors of summer. And with a few Delicious twists, this makes a fabulous Bloody Maria!

Gazpacho Soup Shooters

Ingredients

4-5 large tomatoes, skinned and seeded cut into chunks
¼ cucumber diced
½ yellow onion, diced
1 red or green bell pepper seeded and diced
1 small clove of garlic
½ teaspoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil

Whiz all ingredients together in a blender. Chill and serve with chopped green onions, chives and a sprig of your favorite herb. Spoon into Chilled Shot glasses.

For the Maria, to 3 ounces of the chilled soup add a shake of Tabasco, a dash of Vegan Worcestershire sauce, a bit of vegan horseradish, a squeeze of fresh lemon, a few grinds of black pepper and 1 ounce of vodka.

Fabulous Fourth of July Grilling ideas from Toni Fiore

I love when people ask, “Hey what do vegetarians cook on the grill anyway? Veggie burgers, corn, fake hot dogs??” Well, since all we hear about for the entire week leading up the Fourth of July are the recipes, stories and suggestions for grilling hundreds of pounds of burgers, steaks, chicken and ribs (did I say boring?) I guess it’s a pretty fair question! Let me tell you… there’s no limit to the delicious meatless main meals, side dishes, pizzas, salads and desserts you can make outdoors on the grill. Actually, what’s pretty amazing is that there’s virtually nothing you CAN’T prepare outdoors! And these days when you look at grill accessories there are all kind’s of special pans, grill tops and gadgets that are not only very inexpensive but make grilling a pleasure. Some of the most fun we’ve had filming have been our summer grill recipes. Following are my top picks for this holiday weekend or, really, all season long.

My Portobello- Arugula Salad Burger is always a hit. It’s hearty, colorful, packed with better-than-beef flavor and EASY. I top this recipe with the arugula salad, but you can use your favorite slaw or better yet try the cabbage slaw from my next Fabulous Fourth pick, Cathi DiCocoa’s Rasta Pups. These little gems are perfect for kids if you can snag them away from the adults first. For kids just you might just spare the jalapeno in the slaw, which is cool, cause that leaves more for you! Grilled Seitan 3 Ways is also a terrific choice. Made on skewers you can use any spice rub, jerk or barbeque sauce on these tasty meaty bites. If you’re looking for the best fluffy crispy giant french fries ever, grill em!

The Perfect Grilled Potatoes have an absolutely perfect (no more burned outside raw inside potatoes) texture and take all the mystery out of preparing potatoes on the grill.

For a side salad or for those folks eating REALLY light, try my Grilled Panzanella Salad with it’s nice little Mediterranean spin this recipe is a great way to feature garlic, fresh plump tomatoes and basil! Finally…you’ve got to grill fruit! Peaches on the Grill are absolutely succulent, especially topped with a little light non dairy ice cream or whipped topping. No peaches? No problem! You can substitute, pineapple, apples, pears, bananas or whatever fruit YOU like. This week why not try something new and give these recipes a spin! You, your family and friends will love them. So from our Totally Vegetarian table to yours, all of us at Delicious TV wish you a happy, healthy, compassionate and fantastic Fourth of July! Enjoy!

Can’t Beat Beets

Like Cilantro it seems that people either love beets or hate them! Tonight I made Beet Burgers (recipe courtesy of Didi Emmons and in my book “Totally Vegetarian”) for a couple of friends who swore they would never (ever) develop a liking for this sadly underused root vegetable. Even though I’m seeing beets making more frequent appearances on menus in upscale dining establishments, I find that very simple preparations not only taste better but are more economical for the everyday cook. This particular recipe is really easy to pull together, full of fiber, nutrients and makes enough for a couple of meals worth of burgers. Extra plus is that there is no added fat. I cook my burgers in a cast iron pan with barely a tablespoon of vegetable oil, however in a ceramic non stick pan they can be cooked fat free. Just watch the heat! I served these crisp on the outside warm and crumbly on the inside burgers without a bun, topped with a generous squeeze of Sriracha sauce. I complimented these flavorful and subtly “beety” burgers with a simple side of rosemary roasted potatoes and sweet organic pears. I’m happy to say, much to everyone’s surprise, that the entire dish was a hit! Be sure to buy your beets with nice fresh leafy tops. Tomorrow all of those glorious greens are going to find their way into a hearty minestrone.

Late Season Vegetable Mélange

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Serves 4-6

Inspired by the $5 “grab bags” of vegetables sold by one of the vendors at our local farmer’s market, this variety of late season vegetables combined with woodsy Cremini mushrooms is equally scrumptious for lunch or dinner served alongside tofu “steaks” or a veggie burger, or simply spooned over whole wheat pasta or brown rice.

Ingredients:
2 T. extra virgin olive oil
1 large red onion, chopped into 1/2” dice
3 large cloves fresh garlic, chopped
1 1/2 t. coarse Kosher salt
3 carrots, chopped into 1/2” dice
1 medium yellow summer squash, sliced down the middle, then cut into 1/4” half-rounds
2-3 small to medium-sized potatoes, chopped into 1/2” dice
1 pint cherry tomatoes, any variety, rinsed, whole
1 cube Organic Gourmet bouillion dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water
8 oz. Cremini mushrooms, wiped clean, sliced into halves
Handful of fresh sage, basil, and parsley, coarsely chopped
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Hot pepper flakes, to taste

To prepare:
Heat a wide skillet over medium heat and add olive oil, followed by chopped onion and garlic and a half teaspoon of salt. Stir and cook for about 5 minutes, being careful not to scorch garlic, until onion is just beginning to be translucent. Add chopped carrots and squash to the pan and continue to toss and cook for an additional 5-7 minutes, until vegetables are beginning to soften. Now put potatoes and whole tomatoes into the pan and stir to combine the vegetables – add the dissolved bouillion.

When the mixture begins to simmer, add the mushrooms and chopped fresh herbs, lower the heat, and cover the pan tightly. Allow the mixture to cook for 10-15 minutes more, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes and other vegetables are tender, but not mushy. When everything is cooked through, season the mixture with the remaining salt, the black pepper, and the pepper flakes. Taste and correct seasonings as needed.

Garlic, roasted on the grill

Roasting garlic produces a complete change in flavor, the “bite” of raw garlic magically turns into a mellow sweetness you have to try to believe! I often roast up to half a dozen garlic heads at a time. They keep well — a month or more in the fridge — and in my house, they disappear quickly!

Ingredients:
Several firm, tight heads of garlic
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Coarse kosher salt
Fresh herbs such as lemon thyme or oregano

To prepare:

Peel off any the outermost layer of loose, papery skin, then cut off the top half or so of the pointed end of the garlic head, to expose the cloves.

Place bulb in the center of a 6″ square of heavy duty foil. Drizzle with Extra Virgin Olive Oil and place a fresh herb on top. Sprinkle with a dash of kosher salt and freshly ground
black pepper.

Wrap foil snugly up and around bulb like a Hersey’s Kiss and place on hot grill. Flip it around occasionally till it feels soft and squishy on the inside, about 20 minutes or so.

Remove from foil and pour any excess oil back onto the top of garlic. The delightful little bulbs of roasted garlic will easily squeeze out of their skins.

Mixed Vegetable Grill

Onions and summer squashes are superb when grilled, but don’t be afraid to try any vegetable on the grill. Toni also likes to throw in carrots, fresh fennel, and halved baby potatoes. You’re only limited by your own imagination.

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:
Basic Balsamico Vinaigrette (makes about 1 cup):
3/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
2 T. good quality Balsamic vinegar
2. T. wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Vegetables:
Eggplant, trimmed and cut lengthwise into 1/2″ to 3/4″ “steaks”
Portobello mushroom caps
Zucchini and summer squash, sliced lengthwise or
whole (if small)
Sweet onion( Spanish or Vidalia), sliced 1/4″ crosswise or into moon-shaped wedges
Bell peppers, red, orange & yellow have the most flavor

Or any other combination of vegetables you like!

To prepare:
Certain vegetables lend themselves to easy, quick grilling.

Our list of veggies need only be trimmed of stem ends and sliced for grilling. The key is to slice them thinly enough so that they cook evenly and quickly while still having a tad of firmness.

They may be brushed simply with oil and sprinkled with salt & pepper before and during grilling, or you can use our basic balsamic marinade/baste or your own favorite prepared vinaigrette-style dressing.

Note: You can serve this mixed grill with anything from bruschetta to rice to pasta and the leftovers make fabulous sandwiches on thick, crusty slices of French or Italian bread or rolled up on pita bread.

The season of fresh is upon us

“The best organic food is what’s grown closest to you.” Whether you’re looking for a farmer’s market in your area or want to learn more about Community Supported Agriculture, Local Harvest has the answers for you. While admittedly the site is not just for vegetarians, there is so much useful information here, it’s well worth a visit. And they even have a Food and Farming Events Calendar where you can look up fun food-related events near home or afar.

The orange dots represent farmer's markets!
The orange dots represent farmer's markets!

Go local, go fresh, go veg!

Saturday Food Thoughts

Saturday Food Thoughts

This past Saturday at the local Portland, Maine Farmers Market I had a great conversation with one of the vendors about the differences between shopping in open Italian markets, at local farmers markets here in Maine, and the supermarket. What is it that makes open fruit and vegetable markets such vital and fascinating places? While I was wandering around in the fresh air on that gorgeous morning, I was observing other people shopping. I noticed that there was lively conversation, opinions, suggestions, and pride surrounding the wonderful array of fruits, vegetables, flowers, jams, and other assorted homemade goods. People were socializing with their neighbors, there were children munching on fresh apples and baked goods and even the dogs were welcome. I felt how lucky I am to be so close to where and from whom my food comes.

Walking through the market, I felt a sense of human connection and interaction that I have missed from my years living in Europe. If we don’t support our local growers and farmers in this country, we are throwing away an invaluable gift and continuing to distance ourselves from our food and our food sources. If we only shop in supermarkets, we become increasingly estranged from what food should really mean to us. Food is more than sustenance. When we embrace our farming tradition, seasonality, quality, and the culture of fresh food, we find social, mental, and physical connections the value of which cannot be underestimated. I urge you to buy local, buy fresh, support a clean environment, and the great farming traditions of this country.