I don’t know how people with big families do it. At our house, it’s just Hubby Bryan and me, and there never seems to be any room in our refrigerator. I guess when there are more hungry mouths to feed the contents of the fridge go down pretty quickly.
At this time of the year, I am always making more room in the refrigerator for fresh produce. There is no more space in the designated produce drawers, and the lowest shelf also overflows.
And not all the produce goes into cold storage. There is always a pile of tomatoes on the counter, along with a ripening avocado. Inside the cupboard there are a few onions and a small bag of new potatoes.
But the storage issue is a good problem to have. I love that there’s a multitude of veggies to choose from for our meals, and we often find ourselves making a meal just out of the fresh produce.
Monday night was a good example. It’s been designated as Salad Night at our house, and I generally just heap two large serving bowls with fresh romaine and top it with assorted vegetables and other accouterments. This time around, that included garden-fresh tomatoes, thinly sliced onions, sugar snap peas, mushrooms, toasted chow mein noodles and sliced chicken breast. Drizzled lightly over top was this dressing: in a jar or container with lid, combine ¼ cup sugar, ¼ cup salad oil, ¼ cup red wine, vinegar, 2 tablespoons soy sauce and 1 tablespoon peanut butter. Shake well to combine. (I find that heating the peanut butter in the microwave for a few seconds helps it combine better.)
Even though I always come home with a bag full of stuff from the Farmers Market — the reason for the burgeoning refrigerator —it seems like there is always something else I want to try. I’d love to hear from some readers about their favorite Farmers Market picks and how they prepare those veggies and fruits.
In the meantime, here’s a fritter recipe that was a side item at last week’s Salad Night, and a couple of recipes from local Farmers Market vendors Paul and Leona Marco of Bigelow.
Grate 1½ pounds zucchini; place in colander over sink. Add 1 teaspoon salt and toss gently to combine. Let sit for 10 minutes. Using a clean dish towel or cheese cloth, wring out the zucchini to get out as much moisture as possible.
Combine drained zucchini with ¼ cup all-purpose flour, ¼ cup grated Parmesan, 2 tablespoons finely minced onion, 1 small clove garlic, finely minced, and 1 large egg, beaten. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Scoop tablespoons of batter into the pan, flatten with spatula, and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook on the other side until golden brown. Serve with a dollop of sour cream or Greek yogurt on top.
Grilled Onion Blossom
Heat grill to medium-high heat.
Peel 1 large sweet onion and partially cut into six wedges, being careful not to cut all the way through. Place onion on a large sheet of foil and gently pull onion wedges apart.
Sprinkle with 3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons steak sauce.
Wrap tightly with foil. Grill 40 minutes or until onion is tender and lightly browned.
Quick Cucumber & Red Onion Salad
Cut 1 large red onion into thin slices. Peel 2 large cucumbers and cut into quarter-inch slices. Place in bowl and sprinkle with coarse salt, freshly ground pepper and 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar. Toss thoroughly and chill in the refrigerator for half an hour.
Prior to serving, sprinkle with ¼ cup loosely packed fresh dill and toss again.
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