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November 27, 2017
Leeks and Kale
Other News
By Linda Dansbury
Can you see the Eastern Screech-Owl hangin' out by the pond/sandbox area?
Derek's mom shared an article based on an interview with David Tanis, who writes about how to get the best out of fresh, local veggies - Derek said there were questions in the pick up room asking what to do with leeks - I have talked about them, but maybe not in enough detail. Leeks are in the same family as onions and scallions, but the taste is much more subtle. Unlike onions and scallions, most people do not eat leeks raw. In David Tanis' words, "Don’t under-cook them—they don’t taste good if they’re crunchy.” But otherwise, he argues, leeks are not difficult to prepare. Cooking them in a pan with a pat of butter can result in something “absolutely delicious that you can kind of put anywhere”—in omelettes, or cradling a piece of fish, he suggests. Or try Tanis’ recipe for Leeks Vinaigrette. “In traditional French bistros, cooked whole leeks are dressed with a tart vinaigrette and served as a classic first course,” he writes. They’re “sometimes called ‘poor man’s asparagus’ (leeks are cheaper there than in North America).” If you have never made Potato Leek Soup, check out one of the variations on this site (Creamy Potato Leek Soup; Potato-Leek Chowder; Potato, Leek and Cabbage Soup with Lemon Creme Fraiche; Potato Kale Leek Soup).
After all the rich, filling foods of the holiday weekend, you might be looking for something lighter and healthy. If you are like me and your beautiful bunch of kale is still in the fridge, try the Kale Caesar Salad. Remove the thick mid-veins, stack the leaves and slice into very thin ribbons. Place in large bowl and massage - yes, massage the bowl of kale. After a few minutes, you will feel the difference in the texture of the leaves - they turn soft and silky - and when this happens, even the thick, mature kale leaves become tender enough to enjoy in a salad. I like to use OPA brand Caesar Dressing. It uses Greek yogurt as its base. It is much easier, and it is healthier than the traditional dressing, and it is delicious on kale. If you haven't tried this method, you are missing out on something amazing!
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