Farm to Table Friday: Eggplant, Tomato, Zucchini, Potato

From Bailey
Chicken Eggplant Sorrentino

For many years I worked at an Italian restaurant, and one of my favorite dishes was Chicken Sorrentino, This delicious dish comes to mind anytime I have an eggplant in the house. It’s very easy to make and very tasty!

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Ingredients
These amounts are for four chicken breasts, feel free to increase or decrease as needed

  • 4 Chicken Breasts
  • 1 medium Eggplant
  • 8 slices of Prosciutto
  • 1 jar of Spaghetti Sauce (I like to use homemade, but pre-made works in  a bind)
  • 1 cup fresh Mozzarella Cheese
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 cups Panko or other Breadcrumbs
  • Salt, Pepper, and Italian Seasoning

Start by slicing the eggplant longways into long slices. You’ll want them less then 1/2 inch thick, you’ll need one slice for each of the chicken breasts.  Put the eggs in a bowl and whip them up, put the breadcrumbs with a couple of dashes of the salt, pepper and Italian spices on a plate and mix it up. Dip each slice of eggplant in the egg then coat generously with the breadcrumbs. Put each breaded eggplant slice on a non-stick cookie sheet and bake in a 350 degree oven. Bake them about 10 minutes, then flip and bake about 10 minutes more. The breadcrumbs should brown.

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While the eggplant is baking dice up 1/2 green pepper and a small onion as well as about 5 cloves of garlic. Coat the bottom of a large deep pan with olive oil and heat it up, add the garlic then the peppers and onions and saute. Add most of the sauce and get it all simmering. Then add the chicken breasts and put a lid on the pan to cook the chicken through. After the tops of the chicken breasts appear white, flip them and let them cook to 165 degrees internal temperature.

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When the eggplant is done, remove it from the oven. When the chicken is done put two pieces of prosciutto on top of each breast. Then layer a slice of eggplant on top of that. Then put some of the mozzarella cheese on top and finally cover it with a bit of the sauce. Put the lid back on the pan and cook until the cheese melts. When the cheese melts they are ready to serve and enjoy!

From Megan
Cheesy Veggie Bake

We got quite a few different kinds of veggies this week, so I was looking for a good way to incorporate as many as I could. Then I remembered that I had seen this recipe on Pinterest, and decided I had to try it! It was super easy to make, and very yummy!

Ingredients

  • 1 medium Yellow Onion
  • 1 tbsp minced Garlic
  • 1 medium Zucchini $0.71
  • 1 medium Yellow Squash $0.85
  • 1 medium Potato $0.91
  • 1 medium Tomato $1.65
  • 1 tsp dried Oregano
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 cup shredded Cheese (I used a mix of mozzarella and parmesan)

Step One: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Dice the onion and set aside. Thinly slice the other veggies.

Sliced Veggies

Step Two: Sauté the onion and minced garlic in olive oil until softened (about five minutes).

Step Three: Spray the inside of an 8×8 square baking dish with non-stick spray. Spread the softened onion and garlic in the bottom of the dish. Place the thinly sliced vegetables in the baking dish vertically, in an alternating pattern. Sprinkle generously with salt, pepper, and oregano.

Veggies in Pan Stacked Veggies

Step Three: Cover the dish with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil, top with cheese and bake for another 15 minutes.

Veggies with Cheese Cheesey Veggie Bake

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Gluten Free Angel Food Cake Recipe

Completed Cake

Last week we got an email from our local farm offering all CSA members the opportunity to do some berry picking and get some free fruit. So we headed out to the blueberry bushes, blackberry bushes and strawberry patch. Returning home with about five pounds of assorted berries I was left to contemplate, “Now what do I do with all of this?” The first answer to come to mind was a berry shortcake. Growing up though, we never really ate true shortcake. My mom always made pound cake and served it with the strawberries and whipped cream. In my efforts to cut some calories and fat, I decided to attempt an Angel Food cake, which I had never made before. I compared a few recipes and ended up with what follows. I will admit mine probably was a little underbaked, but I’ll know better for next time. Being that the cake uses so little flour, the gluten free aspect was almost unintelligible.

Ingredients:

3/4 cup Gluten Free Flour Blend

1/4 cup cornstarch

1 1/2 cups of egg whites (about 10-11 large eggs)

3/4 cup superfine sugar (If you don’t have superfine sugar put your regular sugar in a food processor, it’s almost as good as superfine)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

and additional 3/4 + 2 tablespoons superfine sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 375. Place the rack in the lowest possible position.

2. In a bowl whisk together the flour, cornstarch, and one part of the sugar.

3. Separate the eggs. Be very very careful to not have any yolks get into your whites. Having yolk in the mixture can prevent the egg whites from setting correctly and ruin the whole process. When I separate eggs, I don’t shift the whites back and forth in the shell. I wash my hands really well, then break the egg over my hand. I let the white run through my fingers into a bowl and keep the yolk in my hand. It’s the best way I’ve found to separate eggs. One tip: cold eggs will separate more easily. You will need about 10 – 11 eggs to get all the whites you need. I kept all my yolks and thought about making a custard or something, but I didn’t have time. It felt bad to throw them out though. It would have been a good excuse to make mayo….

cake ingredients dry ingredients separated egg

4. Put the egg whites in a very clean and dry mixing bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer. Add the salt and the cream of tartar and whip until it gets foamy. When it’s foamy add the vanilla and almond extract, continue to blend until the eggs have thickened and gotten larger.

5. At this point add the 3/4 + 2 Tablespoons of sugar into the egg whites, add it 1/4 cup at a time slowly.  When the egg whites form soft peaks, remove them from the blender.

6. Slowly fold in the flour mixture a little bit at a time mixing completely.

egg whites in blender egg white mixture cake in the oven

7. Gently spoon the batter into the angel food cake pan. I made my first cake in a bundt pan, and it just didn’t’ turn out as good as I wanted. I made a second one in a real AF cake pan and it was pretty awesome.

8. Tap the pan on the counter to get out any bubbles, then bake it on the lowest oven rack for 45 minutes. Check it after 35, if you press your finger in and it bounces back, it’s done.

9. Here’s the weird part…when you take the pan out of the oven, place it upside down over the neck of a heatproof bottle and leave it there about two hours to cool.

10. To remove the cake from the pan run a rubber scraper around the side and middle and gently tap.

Cake on a bottle In the Pan Out of the Pan

11. Serve how you choose, I like it with whipped cream and berries!

This cake is light and delicious – way less calories and fat than most cakes!

Baked Oatmeal Recipe

In my quest to be a Gluten Free I ran across some problems at breakfast. If I go somewhere and sit down I’m okay, eggs and potatoes will do, but what about my jaunt into the local coffee shop? No muffins, bagels, croissants or biscotti for me.

Recently I went to my local coffee shop St. Thomas Roasters and they had Baked Oatmeal. I asked about the recipe and it was gluten free, yay! Their oatmeal was very simple, just some brown sugar. As I sat there I couldn’t help thinking of all the better things I could put into my own baked oatmeal… so I did!  I made my first attempt with peaches, and it was good but it needed a bit of tweaking. Here is the recipe I used for my second (and very successful attempt).

Baked Oatmeal with Blueberries and Bananas

Baked Oatmeal IngredientsDry Ingredients

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1.5 teaspoons cinnamon
  • a dash of salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar

Liquid Ingredients

  • 2 cups milk ( I used Organic Fat Free)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon agave syrup (or maple syrup). If you don’t have agave, add more brown sugar.
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter, slightly cooled

The Add-Ins
You can use whatever fresh fruits, dried fruits, or nuts that you like. Here is what I used:

  • 2 fresh Bananas, sliced
  • 1/2 cup fresh Blueberries
  • Grated peel of one small Lemon
  • Juice of 1/4 lemon wedge.

Preheat your oven to 375. Butter an 8×8 pan and set it aside.
Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

Dry Ingredients

Combine all the liquid ingredients, leaving 1/2 the butter in the dish. Mix them with a whisk and set the bowl aside.

Wet Ingredients

Mix your Add-Ins together in a small bowl.

Diced Bananas and Blueberries

Next, add the fruit mixture to the dry ingredients and combine. Then move them into the buttered baking dish.

Mixed Fruit and Oats 2

Pour the liquid mixture over the oat mixture. Use your spoon or scraper to gently move the liquid around, making sure all the oats are covered.

Ready to Bake

Next I took 1/3 cup of crushed almonds and spread them over the top, then drizzled the rest of the melted butter over the top.

Put in the oven and bake 35-45 minutes. Let it cool a bit and enjoy!

Baked Close Up - Copy

I usually cut mine into 9 pieces. Each piece will have around 200 calories depending on what you add and how much sugar you use. In the fridge it will keep about a week, I like to warm my piece in the microwave and drizzle a little milk on it. If you make your own version, please let us know what delicious combos you’ve tried!

~ Bailey

Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pizza Crust Mix

Being plagued with stomach issues since I was a teenager, I am always searching for ways to keep my erratic digestive system in check. I was first diagnosed with Acid Reflux as a teenager, but I wasn’t able to control my symptoms. I tried changes in diet and medication but it was to no avail. In college I realized that it seemed to be related to stress. Every mid-terms and finals week I was stricken down by intense shooting acid in my esophagus. By my twenties the pain seemed to centralize right in the middle of my chest. I’d wake up feeling like I was being stabbed with a hot knife right between my ribs. After a gall bladder ultrasound and a scope, results were inconclusive. My doctor changed the diagnosis to a form of IBS and gave me the sage prescription “Eat healthy, exercise, and hope for the best.”

Recently I was advised to attempt a gluten-free diet, many people with stomach maladies have reported success from this. I won’t say I’m able to go truly GF, but I am certainly trying. I’d call myself, Gluten-limited or Gluten-reduced. After only a week I’ve already seen a difference.

Part of the fun of this new diet is trying out new baking and cooking techniques. Not being willing to give up my favorite food, pizza, I set out to find a GF crust recipe I could make. The first recipe I found required buying GF flour, dry milk, and Xantham Gum. I was set to do it, but at my local grocer the Xantham Gum was 11.00 for a package, and I wasn’t quite ready to be that committed yet. However, right beside those ingredients I saw the pre-packaged pizza dough mix.

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The directions were very easy to follow, and the dough did exactly what it was supposed to. I spread it in the pan and baked it. The package makes two pizzas.

The first we topped with pizza sauce, ricotta and shredded cheeses, mushrooms and turkey pepperoni.

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The pizza itself tasted good, but the crust was very bland. It also did not have the crunch of a normal crust, but that also may be from being baked at home instead of in a real pizza oven. I felt like the crust needed salt, my husband said sugar,and we both agreed some herbs would have helped. We are going to do a little doctoring before we prep the second pizza.

Take Two! For the second pizza we went a little more creative and had slightly better results. This time the crust sat, wrapped in plastic wrap, for two days before we baked it. Perhaps it was the time it had to cool and maybe even get a little stale, but it was a bit crunchier this time. This also may have been from pressing the dough a little thinner. Thinner is better, I found. This round we did a fajita pizza.

I brushed the crust with olive oil and sea salt.

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Then I topped it with salsa.

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And covered it with sauteed chicken, chiles, onions, and peppers as well as cheddar jack cheese and some queso fresco. Finally we topped each slice with some mango salsa, sour cream and avocado. The crust held up well to to the heavy toppings and tasted better. I wouldn’t say if gluten was not a concern that I’d bother, but if you, like me, are trying to cut gluten out of your diet, this is the way to go.

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Maybe next time I’ll try it from scratch. If I do, you’ll be the first to know!