We had a great trip to the local Farmer’s Market today. My fridge is bursting with fresh fruit and vegetables. The blueberries I picked up for breakfast are seriously wonderful. I thought about making something with them, but to be honest, I think just popping them in my mouth fresh and cool is the absolute best. So baking with them? That idea has flown out the window completely.
The other gorgeous food I picked up today were some incredible beets. My mom loves beets – a little fact I never knew until just last year. She picked up some beets at our Farmer’s Market when she was here and I swear there were stars in her eyes. She brought them back to our house and boiled them… staining her hands in the process. Something she swore was completely worth the redness. My dad wasn’t looking too convinced. And when I saw my dad’s face, I knew why I had never eaten beets in my lifetime. She never made them because he doesn’t really “appreciate” them much. Ah ha. Mystery solved.
Needless to say, I’m not a boiled beets fan. However, when I can get fresh beets from the Farmer’s Market, I adore them roasted. And I’ve solved the red-dyed hands look too. It’s as easy as a pair of latex gloves. Yeap. I keep the painting gloves handy during beet season. I, for one, do not appreciate reddened-fingers.
Oh, and the beet greens? They make for the perfect base for a roast beet salad. And that is exactly what I plan to make with them this week.
Ah yes. I love the Farmer’s Market.
It’s the best place to go for inspiration for your menu!
And this week Natalie of Gluten-Free (the originator of the Gluten Free Menu Swap) chose tofu for this week’s main ingredient. And while we do enjoy tofu in our house, I have only one recipe that highlights it this week. I learned how to make this incredibly delicious tofu with ginger and soy when my in-laws were in town. I guess this is the time for me to finally get around to making it. Tofu is actually a very budget-friendly – and incredible versatile.
Tofu comes in many forms. If you are a tofu-neophyte, little reading about the types of tofu and how to use them are all you really need before you get started. Wikipedia has a great summary here and here is a basic page with a chart that lists the basic tofu substitutes. Even if you are not planning to substitute tofu (we don’t, we just cook the tofu to eat that.), knowing what type of protein you can replace will give you a better idea of cooking, etc.
I recently made Inari-sushi which is made from fried tofu packets that are opened up and filled with sushi rice. And Oh. My. Goodness. They are great! Believe it or not, they are the perfect slightly-sweet treat for a lunch box for me sometimes. In honor of Natalie’s choosing tofu, I’ll post that recipe this week sometime.
In the meantime, I want to thank Jyesika at Wheatstate Celiac for hosting this week’s menu swap. And I will also be submitting this to Menu Plan Monday on Orgjunkie.org. It was incredibly helpful and motivating for me to participate there are well.
Here’s the plan, Sam. Let’s see if I stick to it!
Monday: Peach-sweetened Chili with Pita Chips
Tuesday: Carne Asada with Leaf Lettuce Wraps
Wednesday: Grilled Pork and Peaches
Thursday: Roast Beet and Carrot Salad with Grilled chicken breasts
Friday: Baked meatballs and spaghetti, garlic bread and a huge salad
Happy Monday, everyone!