farmers market

Raking Leaves and Creating Memories

Balsamic Mahi Mahi with Broccoli

I identify myself as unusual, and here’s why: I recently recognized raking leaves as a 2014 top fall memory. With the identification comes a story. A college friend and I spent our fall break at my house in Minnesota. My friend comes from Hawaii, where leaves don’t fall (weird!), so she had never before raked leaves. Shockingly, I found myself excited to head to the yard with my family and friend for her first leaf gathering experience, and even more shockingly, I enjoyed being out there. Thus, raking leaves is a fond memory. Afterwards the girls went for manicures and pedicures, perhaps favorably tainting my thoughts.

Fall is here, temperatures are dropping, and famers market season is wrapping up, so I’m making the most of the last fall vegetables: broccoli, onions, and parsley.

Balsamic Mahi Mahi with Broccoli

1/2 lb mahi mahi

2 medium heads broccoli

1/4 cup onion, roughly chopped

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp butter

2 tsp balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp parsley

Salt and pepper

Steam broccoli until still slightly firm, about 6 minutes. In a large skillet, heat butter and olive oil on medium high. Place mahi mahi in skillet, season with parsley, salt, and pepper; and cook for about 5 minutes. Turn mahi mahi and add onion to skillet, sautéing until mahi mahi is cooked through and onion is translucent, 4-6 minutes. Turn heat to low, add broccoli, balsamic vinegar, and garnish with extra parsley. Stir to mix flavors and serve.

Cumin Roasted Carrots

Roasted Carrots

Hello, second week of school. I’m settled back at school in Illinois, where I’m reconnecting with friends and starting to study. So far I love living in a house with my six best friends. All six of us are rational and considerate, so we’ll never have conflict. Stop laughing. I know we’ll have disagreements, but for now we’re on top of the world finding each other and the house.

I know the transition to fall vegetables has begun, since I saw Brussels sprouts at the farmers market last weekend. That being said, it’s time to roast carrots. This is the simplest side you’ll make, but it looks fancy and delicious.

Roasted Carrots

1 bunch carrots (about 15 medium sized)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp cumin
Salt and pepper

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Arrange carrots on jelly roll pan in a single layer and coat with olive oil. Sprinkle cumin, salt, and pepper on carrots. Roast carrots in oven, turning once, for 35-40 minutes, or until carrots are soft.

Summer Veggie Salad with Herb Vinaigrette

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SO MANY VEGETABLES. That’s what I thought this week after our CSA delivery. However, it’s important to note I didn’t view this as a problem; rather, I immediately planned to make a salad. Summer Veggie Salad with Herb Vinaigrette resulted from my planning, so there we were eating our vegetables and herbs. As you’ll gather, the salad works with any raw veggies, the fresher the better, so throw in what you have. I listed the vegetables I used below, since I loved the mix.

Summer Veggie Salad

2 ears of corn

1 cucumber

1 zucchini

2 heirloom tomatoes

3 carrots

Herb Vinaigrette

1/3 cup olive oil

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1 tsp dijon mustard

1 tsp basil

1 tsp sage

1 tsp chives

salt and pepper

Boil water for corn, and cook corn for about 3-4 minutes. Roughly chop all veggies, and combine in a large bowl. If warm, rinse corn under cold water to cool, then cut off from cob. In a container with a lid, combine olive oil, apple cider vinegar, dijon, basil, sage, and chives, and shake to combine. Season veggies with salt and pepper, and toss with vinaigrette. Let salad sit covered for 15 minutes to let flavors blend.