DIARIES FROM THE FARMER’S MARKET, NO. 1

Welcome to the beginning of 2021, and the start of a new journey at Rabbit Food! Our hope is to equip anyone who stumbles across these pages to shop and cook locally, with foods that nourish the body. Diaries from the Farmer’s Markets is a simple way to walk through cooking from your treasured finds at the Farmer’s Market! Last time I came home, with a box full of produce, I told Natty how it felt like a puzzle, and how excited I was to discover ways to cook the varying bounty. Maybe you can relate – it can feel intimidating yet exciting to come home with arms full of old favorites and new delicacies, or a box of mystery with your CSA. This series is meant to be community-focused, and make the journey of shopping locally a bit less foreign. Join me this year in learning new ways of cooking and tasting the unique flavors of the Northwest!

Diary No. 1

December 16th, Hood River Farmer’s Market

This week, I opted in for a Seasonal Box (I love a good mystery), and a few other goodies. Here’s a full list of what I brought back to our Portland apartment.

  • 3 Delicata Squash
  • 6 Sunchokes
  • 3 Turnips
  • 6 Beets
  • 1 bag of Farm Greens
  • 2 Leeks
  • 1 bunch of Kale
  • ½ lb shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 winter spaghetti squash
  • 8 lbs granny smith apples (LOL)

The seasonal produce included everything from the delicata squash to the kale, the rest were add-ons. AND before you shoot daggers- Natty (my husband) LOVES apples and has finished all but 3 of the granny smith apples. My hope was to snack of half, and use half for applesauce, but maybe next time 😉

Now, for the fun part: turning everything into a meal! This haul made lunches, dinners and snacks for two weeks. Here’s how I approached it:

  1. Some of the food I knew exactly what I wanted to do, such as with some of the beets and the spaghetti squash. These I wrote down.
  2. For the remaining food, I searched through my four 2021 cookbooks and looked for recipes that were:
    • Using cross-ingredients (for example, I used a Turnip, Leek & Potato Soup from Six Seasons by Joshua McFadden, which utilized the turnips & leeks I got at the Farmer’s Market)
    • Using other, in-season or local ingredients (for the delicata squash salad, we were in prime hazelnut season in Oregon! It just made sense)
    • Looked good! This wasn’t hard to do – everything looked DELICIOUS! Trust your gut though – it’s okay not to love the look of every recipe you come across. You can also alter a recipe to feature an ingredient you love!
  3. In the spirit of creativity, I left a few ingredients to experiment with on my own. A few recipes are staples to me (Like Beet and Arugula Salad), but others were new and inspired, like Smashed Beets with Hot Honey.

From here, I spent two weeks creating! Here’s what I made.

(P.S. – Any recipe from one of my 2021 cookbooks have links to the product at Powell’s! If you’re outside of Portland, call your local bookstore and see if they carry these books. They are worth the investment 🙂 )

Delicata Squash

Squash Salad with Pomegranate Seeds

I pieced this bad boy together after a delicious appetizer at Arden, a wine bar in Portland. Stay tuned for this recipe in the next few weeks – it’s TOO good!

Delicata Squash Donuts

From Six Seasons

Sunchokes

Roasted Sunchokes

You might have seen this one on the IG! You can find the recipe here.

Turnips

Turnip, Leek & Potato Soup

From Six Seasons

Half- Steamed Turnips

From Six Seasons

Beets

Smashed Beets

An original! Find the recipe here.

Beet and Bread Salad

From Local Dirt

Beet & Arugula Salad

An easy, quick salad! Boil & peel your beets, chop, and toss with arugula, candied nuts, goat cheese & balsamic vinaigrette!

Leeks

Braised Leeks with Mushroom Risotto

From Local Dirt & Minimalist Baker (This is a direct link – Minimalist Baker is a great resource for plant-based recipes!)

See also Leek, Turnip & Potato Soup and Mushroom Stir Fry

Kale

Kale Pesto

From Local Dirt

Mushrooms

Mushroom Ramen Stir Fry

One of my absolute favorite “Kitchen Sink” lunch recipes. We always have blocks of Public Goods ramen on our hands, so I’ll saute whatever aromatic vegetables I have with something heartier, and stir-fry it all together. This time around, I used the rest of our shiitake mushrooms, garlic, half of a leek from the Farmer’s Market, and an egg!

See Also Braised Leeks with Mushroom Risotto

Spaghetti Squash

My mom started making spaghetti squash when I was in high school, and I still love it mostly because of how crazy nature shows off with it. I mean, a squash that is naturally like a NOODLE inside?! Insane. For this, I pitted the squash, seasoned each half with oil, salt and pepper, and roasted face-down for 35 minutes. (Make sure to stab some holes in the back of your squash for ventilation) Then, just scooped some pesto & homemade marinara on top and mixed it up!

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