For the love of potatoes, local farm box and cold season

Ruby and I have been sick. It’s going on a week now of sore throats, sneezing, snot sucking and crankiness. I would say we’re starting to feel better but, I’m not sure that’s true. We were feeling better at one point, but then it seems to have come back. Energy wise we’re doing pretty great, but there’s still lots of nose blowing and stuffy head for me and lots and lots of snot for Ruby, along with crankiness. Though she’s also teething so I’m sure it’s both. We try to get outside as much as we can so that we can get some fresh air, but we’ve also been doing lots of nursing and resting. I really hope it goes away soon because dealing with teething is enough. For both of us.

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I just quickly want to give a shout out to this great farm box we got with our grocery deliver this week. I’ve always wanted to get one but they’re a bit pricey for me. Well they were on sale for $9.99! So I said okay, let’s see what we get. There’s a large butternut squash, a bunch of chioggia beets with beautiful greens attached, a head of fennel with fronds, a large head of bok choy, 5 Carmen peppers and a gorgeous bunch of curly kale. I can’t wait to cook it all up. I’ve got lots of ideas!

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We eat a lot of potatoes in our house. Which is funny because for years and years (mostly pre-vegan days) I only ate potatoes if that’s all there was. It’s not that I disliked them. It’s more like I enjoyed them too much, so I had to limit them. I mean, who doesn’t love mashed potatoes right? But then there’s the butter and cream. Or maybe baked potatoes? Then there’s butter, sour cream, maybe cheese. Oh, and I used to love potato skins all greasy and topped with cheese and sour cream. But I tend to crave the lighter, healthier option so I just stopped giving potatoes a staring role. Fast forward to now and potatoes are probably the base for 25% of our meals, at least. So of course we almost always have potatoes on hand.

One of the dishes I love with potatoes are home fries. I love home fries. Now, I know there are home fry people and hash brown people. Let me just say that adore them both. They each have their own qualities and characteristics that make them delicious. And I LOVE when the hash browns are good and crispy! I imagine the big reason I’m not focusing on hash browns is because I haven’t quite figured out how to make good, at home. I’m still working on that. I will also say that home fries are a bit more diverse, in my opinion. Anyway, we had a grocery delivery today and the first meal I made was home fries. They’re super simple to make and I make them pretty often. This here is sort of my standard recipe. The secret is that these potatoes cook for about an hour, sometimes longer depending on how Ruby’s feeling. And I also increase the heat for fast caramelization, then deglaze with water, then increase the heat, then deglaze. I do this 4 or 5 times during the hour or so cooking process. The water helps to cook the potatoes by creating steam. The repeated caramelization is coating the whole dish in yumtastic sugars pulled from the onions and peppers. The extended cooking time aids in the creation of the flavor texture of home fries from a restaurant, that have been sitting on a flat top cooking all day. This is a labor of love for me. Sometimes I add a sweet potato in there. Sometimes it’s broccoli. It’s flexible.

Cori’s Home Fries

  • 4 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 6 small to medium potatoes, scrubbed and cubed
  • 1 cup frozen sliced bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup frozen chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup frozen greens (collards, kale, spinach)
  • 1 Field Roast sausage, chopped (any will do)
  • Salt and pepper

Everything gets tossed into our 13 inch cast iron skillet, which has been preheated on high for a few minutes. Mix well to combine and let cook for 3 or 4 minutes or until everything starts sticking (caramelization happening!). Drizzle about 1/4 cup of water into the pan while simultaneously stiring/scraping all the contents up from the bottom of the pan. This is deglazing, and picks up all of the yummy bits from the pan. Reduce heat to medium and let cook until all water evaporates and it’s just starting to stick again. Increase the heat to high and let a new layer of caramelization and crust form. Repeat the deglazing process 4 or 5 times over the period of an hour, insuring the potatoes are tender.

This recipe is super flexible. Today I topped it with guacamole because we had it. Sometimes it’s ketchup. Sometimes it’s barbecue sauce, sometimes it’s diced tomatoes. Whatever you have is great.

Another potato recipe I made this past week was a cheezy potato broccoli soup. I had never made this before and sort of just threw it together as I was going (that happens a lot here). It was awesome!

  • 6-8 russet potatoes, scrubbed and cubed
  • Salt
  • 2 tsp. Better than Boullion vegetable paste
  • 1/3 cup Made well macaroni and cheese powder (Homemade vegan pantry)
  • 1 cup plant milk, plain, preferably unsweetend
  • 2 cups frozen broccoli, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Put the potatoes in a pot and cover with fresh cool water. Salt to taste. Boil until tender. Drain potatoes into a bowl in order to save the cooking water. Return the potatoes to the pot and add two cups of cooking water back, along with the Better than Broth vegetable paste and heat over medium low heat. Add the cheeze sauce liquid and using an immersion blender blend the potato and cheeze sauce to desired smoothness (I like a little chunky). Increase heat to medium and cook until the soup thickens. Add frozen broccoli pieces and cook until heated through. Add additional potato cooking liquid as desired, to reach your desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

I also threw together another pumpkin curry yesterday because I had leftover pumpkin puree and coconut milk. It had sweet potatoes, chickpeas and frozen green beans. It was the last of the food in the house before the next days grocery delivery. I used the same basic recipe as I did last week. So so good. And Ruby loved as well.

 

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2 thoughts on “For the love of potatoes, local farm box and cold season

  1. Pingback: Sunday Morning | under the influence of food

  2. Pingback: Sunday Morning – wildflower vegan kitchen

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