Friday, July 24, 2015

Preserving the Harvest

How to freeze Fruits and Vegetables- make the most of the Summer/Fall Harvest

Have you ever run into a good price on produce or found that you had purchased more than you could eat before it started to turn? Read on to see how to freeze and preserve the foods so they don’t go to waste.

Vegetables: Wash the vegetables, then boil and blanch. A basic rule of thumb is to blanch (boil) the vegetable for 2-4 min, then put them in an ice bath for an equivalent amount of time. Strain vegetables and place on a baking sheet. Place in freezer for 2-3 hours, or until firm. Place in freezer bags and place in freezer for future use. (see a list here.)

Fruit: Wash fruit, remove stems and seeds, slice if desired, allow to dry. Then spread on a baking sheet and place in freezer for 2-3 hours, or firm. Place in freezer bags and place in freezer for future use.

Quick Tips
·     Freeze fruits and veggies when they're at their peak of freshness.
·     Freeze fruits and vegetables quickly.
·     Store in heavy-weight, air-tight containers or freezer bags.
·     Fill containers to the top and remove as much air as possible from freezer bags.

Once frozen, these can be used in soups, smoothies, casseroles, slow cooker meals and more. The nutrients are maintained and so is the flavor, without the worry of preservatives that may be found in frozen and canned foods purchased in the store.

Friday, July 3, 2015


In honor of the holiday and BBQ's that take place,
try these sure to become BBQ favorites.

barely adapted from Cooking Light, June 2011
{Note: this sherbet will freeze pretty solid – remove from the freezer 5-10 minute before serving to let it warm up slightly and make it easier to scoop.}
1/4 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
2 cups cubed mango (peeled)
1/2 cup sugar or 1/4 cup honey/agave nectar
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 (13.5 oz) can light coconut milk
Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Spread the coconut in an even layer on the baking sheet. Bake for 5-10 minutes, stirring frequently, until the coconut is golden brown. Don’t walk away, it can burn *very* quickly. Remove the baking sheet to a wire rack and let the coconut cool while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
In the bowl of your food processor (or blender), combine the mango, sugar, lime juice, and coconut milk. Process until the mixture is completely smooth. If desired, transfer to your refrigerator and chill for a few hours (this isn’t strictly necessary, but I always like to get the mixture very cold before churning).
Freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to an airtight container and store in your freezer. You’ll want to give it a few hours to firm up before serving. Sprinkle some of the toasted coconut on top of each serving.
Makes about 1 quart
    For the Salad
  • 1 pound Brussels Sprouts
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 avocado
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • For the Lemon Vinaigrette
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
    For the Salad
  1. Shred the Brussels Sprouts using a mandolin, or finely shred the Brussels using a sharp knife.
  2. Toss the shredded Brussels with the dried cranberries, avocado and parmesan cheese. Drizzle with the lemon vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper as needed.
  3. For the Lemon Vinaigrette
  4. Whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

A healthy snack that's incredibly crunchy, crispy and addicting!
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup Panko*
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 zucchinis, thinly sliced to 1/4-inch thick rounds
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.
  • In a large bowl, combine Panko and Parmesan; set aside.
  • Working in batches, dredge zucchini rounds in flour, dip into eggs, then dredge in Panko mixture, pressing to coat.
  • Add zucchini rounds to the skillet, 5 or 6 at a time, and cook until evenly golden and crispy, about 1 minute on each side. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. 
  • Option: cover and dredge the zucchini- then bake in 400 degree oven for 8 min or until golden brown. Turning over half way through.
  • Serve immediately.