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Entries in Joe's Kitchen (8)

Thursday
Oct202016

Annual Farm to Plate Network Gathering

Happy Friday!

We're off to Killington this morning to participate in the 6th annual Farm to Plate Network Gathering. The gathering is a two-day series of forums where the entirety of the Farm to Plate Network gets together to examine Vermont's food system in the past year, as well as moving forward. Specifically, the Network is looking at what aspects of the Farm to Plate Strategic Plan--a 10 year plan signed into law in 2009 with three main goals: to increase economic development in VT's farm and food sector, create jobs in the farm and food economy, and to improve access to healthy local food for all Vermonters (if you want to read more about it, here's the article that we just referenced).

The forum that we'll be participating in is a discussion around the viability of using #2 (or seconds) produce in value added production. We're excited to discuss all aspects of it--the pitfalls, upsides, labor costs, and generally how we (and others) make it work. We hope to see you guys there!

(some of our beautiful #2 tomatoes)

Have a wonderful weekend!

Joe & Lori

 

 

Friday
Apr102015

Coming Soon: NEW Processing Facility!!!

Well, it’s official!

We didn’t want to reveal anything before we were 100% sure it was happening, but now we are; we’re going to build a new facility to process our vegetables and soup! We were lucky enough to qualify for (and receive!) a Working Lands Grant around this time last year. Slowly but surely, we’ve been getting all the pieces together.

We were lucky enough to be able to get two free ovens, courtesy of University of Vermont Medical Center, and thanks to a loan from the Vermont Economic Development Authority: we purchased a second steam kettle—which will be coming with us to the new facility.

Not only is it a HUGE deal for us to be able to move into our own facility, but we also hope to be able to provide a space in Montpelier for other local food producers to utilize. Things are starting to happen faster, now that we’ve signed the lease.  We’ll keep you all posted! Lots of exciting updates on their way.

 

Tuesday
Feb242015

Enchiladas! 

Some of you may have seen our Enchilada Sauce for sale at Healthy Living in Burlington, (or through the Farmers to You CSA!). We're a big fan of mexican-inspired food at our house, and enchiladas have to be one of the fastest, most satisfying meals you can bake in the oven. The other night, we decided to branch out from our regular bean-rice-and-cheese enchiladas, and make some tofu enchiladas!

You can find our Refried Beans (vegan and gluten free) at Healthy Living as well, and we just mixed up a bunch of our beans with a little Maple Chipotle BBQ sauce (also available at Healthy Living!), and some diced tofu, with a bit of salt. This made a tasty combination, which we then just mixed with some fresh rice and rolled up into corn tortillas! Make sure that you put a healthy serving of enchilada sauce in the bottom of your oven-safe pan, and then place all of your enchiladas on top. Sprinkle some cheese, pour some more enchilada sauce (and maybe a little more cheese), and then throw them in the oven!

We generally heat our oven up to 350, and let them cook for about 25 minutes. It's easy to tell when they're done, though--the whole house should smell cheesy, and the edges of the dish should be bubbling (and the top golden brown, of course). We often garnish with a little salsa, hot sauce, and sour cream. 

As always, we'd love to hear your favorite versions of this dish, or any other ways you like to cook with out enchilada sauce! Keep in touch (and stay warm!)! Hopefully everyone has a wonderful week.

 

Tuesday
Feb102015

Chimi Churi Dinners

            We’ve recently started selling our Chimi Churi sauce at Healthy Living in Burlington. Chimi Churi is an Argentinian pesto, made from primarily parsley, instead of basil. Ours contains olive oil, garlic, parsley, oregano, cider vinegar, salt, and chili flake, which all make it taste super fresh. It’s great to eat on fish, chicken, or beef, as is traditional, but we’ve found it goes really well with tofu and vegetables, too.


            Here are two quick recipe ideas, one for a Chimi Churi root veg dish, and another for tofu.

            To make Chimi Churi tofu, put a little olive oil in a pan, and then crumble up the tofu with a little cumin and soy sauce to give it some flavor. We like to let the tofu sit in the pan for a while before stirring it around, which lets it get a little bit brown. Once one side of the tofu has gotten to this point, mix some of the Chimi Churi into the pan and let it cook a little longer. Sometimes we’ll add a little paprika or chili flake to the dish—it helps bring out the flavor. This tofu tastes great with some beans and rice in a taco, or by itself with some veggies. And it’s quick to make!

(Chimi-Churi tofu with our refried beans, corn, and a little hot sauce--in a taco, of course!)

            One of our favorite dinners to eat is potatoes and onions, with a little olive oil, baked in the oven. Heat your oven up to 400 degrees, and dice some potatoes and onions. Other root veg tastes really good with our Chimi Churi, too—sometimes we’ll add carrots or sweet potatoes. We usually throw them in our cast iron pan, but you can also use another oven-safe dish. Let them roast for 15-20 minutes, and then pull them out for a moment to mix in the Chimi Churi.  Let the potatoes cook for 10 or 15 more minutes, and then pull them out of the oven.

(Mmm..Potatoes and onions we cooked last week in the oven, with Chimi Churi)

            Hopefully these ideas helped! As always, please be in touch with any questions or comments you may have—we’re always looking for feedback.

Have a wonderful week! 

Monday
Jan122015

This Week's Featured Soup: Farm Pho

Hello Everyone!

Just a quick update on what's happening this week: LOTS of soups being made! 

One of our favorite (and most popular!) soups is our Farm Pho. Based off of a traditional Vietnamese noodle soup, our Farm Pho is vegan, and gluten free. It contains a bunch of different fresh vegetables: carrots, onions, celery, mushrooms, as well as some herbs--to add to the seasoning, of course!

 (here's an action shot of the celery being added to the steam kettle--mmm)

Though the soup is delicious on it's own, we thought we'd give you a few ideas about ways to change it up a little! One thing that supplements the flavors already present in the soup is to add more fresh herbs--we'd suggest adding some basil. On the topic of supplementing flavors in the soup; the other day I added a little bit of spicy peanut sauce to my bowl of Farm Pho. It was delicious! Definitely stir it in very well, but it makes the soup a little bit heavier/creamier. 

(and here's a shot of the Farm Pho in it's final stages of processing)

Another tasty (and fast) way to add a little more substance to this soup would be to make it a little more traditional: Pho is generally made using chicken or beef broth, with chunks of meat in it. Though you can't change the actual broth of the soup, it can make a big difference in the taste by adding a little chicken or beef. 

Have any of you (our wonderful customers) experimented with adding anything extra to their soup? We'd love to hear your ideas and opinions! 

Hopefully every one of you has a wonderful week--stay warm! And stay posted for more updates from the kitchen. :)