Hi there Rootabaga subscribers,
This is an extra exciting week as it’s the second last produce bag of 2022! To go along with the holiday meal ideas we’ve been sharing in December, this week’s subscription is based around a fresh and festive recipe for Candy Cane Beet Salad with Goat Cheese. The veggie share has all the vegetables you need to make the salad plus a little more to go around.
Specifically, the small share has:
Candy Cane Beets – Elmridge Farm, spray-free
Parsnips – Elmridge Farm, spray-free
Rainbow Carrots – Elmridge Farm, spray-free
Kale – Elmridge Farm, spray-free
Leeks – Elmridge Farm, spray-free
Gala Apples – Noggins Corner Farm, conventionally grown
Sweet Potatoes – Elmridge Farm, spray-free
Garlic – Elmridge Farm, spray-free
The large share has all the above plus:
Delicata Squash – Taproot Farms, certified organic
And a larger share of kale, leeks, and sweet potatoes
Now that you’ve got the ingredients, check out this recipe for Candy Cane Beet Salad with Goat Cheese (https://familystylefood.com/candy-cane-beet-salad-with-pistachios-goat-cheese/). I really wanted to incorporate candy cane beets, also known as Chiogga, for my holiday meal planning. Their striking pink and white stripes are naturally so festive! I learned from the kitchen crew at Uprooted that the key to maintaining their colour is to eat them raw, they lose their pretty stripes when cooked. And if you’re not typically a fan of raw beets, this variety has a milder flavour than red beets, so I encourage you to give them a try! I was excited to find this recipe and was even happier when I tested and enjoyed it as much as I did.
I made two substitutions to the recipe to incorporate vegetables that are available locally this time of year. First, I traded kale for the mixed greens. The key here is to massage your kale! Wash and trim the kale leaves, dry them well, chop them into bite sized pieces and then drizzle them in a little bit of olive oil and a dash of lemon juice and massage it into the leaves with your hands. This tenderizes the kale making it a lot easier (and tastier) to eat raw. The other swap I made was for Speerville sunflower seeds instead of pistachios. I used the plain goat cheese from Ran-Cher Acres but you could get creative and try one of their herbed varieties instead!
Substituting the kale for tender leafy greens also means you can prepare this salad ahead of time without it getting soggy, which I always appreciate when cooking for a crowd. You can have the kale pre-massaged with oil and lemon, and the other ingredients in a bowl, then just add the dressing and goat cheese when it’s time to serve.
Another use for your beets is to pickle them! Pickling candy cane beets will also retain their pretty stripe pattern. They aren’t hard to make and will have any holiday guests impressed at the unique and delicious pickle, or they would make a thoughtful homemade gift. See the recipe here: https://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/pickled-beets
With the leek and apple, why not try a new stuffing recipe? I had never had stuffing with apples before but when a friend served it at Thanksgiving I was hooked! Stuffing can sometimes get dry and then is completely disappointing. The additional moisture and sweetness from the apple is the perfect boost to your classic stuffing. A similar recipe is found here: https://www.marthastewart.com/318963/apple-stuffing
Lastly I’d go for some sauteed rainbow carrots and parsnips. Steamed vegetables have their place for sure, but I like that you never get a watery carrot when they’re sauteed instead. For rainbow carrots I like to slice them in long diagonal rounds so that you see more of the colour. Slice the parsnips the same way. Heat some butter in a frying pan over medium heat, add the carrots and parsnips, a splash of balsamic vinegar, and a drizzle of maple syrup. Sautee them, stirring occasionally, with the lid on until tender. Season with salt and pepper. Serve alongside your favourite holiday main course!
I hope you enjoyed this week’s Rootabaga as much as I did! I know I’ll be making that candy cane beet salad all beet season long.
A reminder to you all that we will be closed from December 24th to January 5th so pick up next week will be on the Thursday and Friday, you’ll be receiving our Christmas Veggie Bag (smaller portion for those of you with the small subscription) and we won’t have a pick up on December 31st. Rootabaga pickups will resume January 7th. The REBOOT discount code will still work if you would like to sign up for another 5 weeks or maybe give it as a gift for Christmas! You can sign up below
Take care until next week,