goat cheese

Stuffed Poblano Peppers with Chorizo and Cheese

by Anne Maxfield on November 26, 2018

Accidental Locavore Peppers Stuffed With ChorizoOne of the best parts of being in a CSA (besides the farm-fresh veggies) is the chance to try different veggies. Not that poblano peppers are so “weird,” but on an average day  I’d probably only pick up a couple for a specific dish. When they were part of our share a couple of weeks ago, I thought it was time to see what I could do with them.

Stuffing them seemed like the thing to do and this interesting recipe from Rick Bayliss—his take on chile rellenos – was my starting point. Serves 4.

Accidental Locavore Peppers Stuffed and FinishedStuffed Poblano Peppers with Chorizo and Cheese

For the peppers:

  • 4 large poblano peppers, as smooth as possible
  • 1 pound chorizo
  • 2 cups onion, diced
  • Salt
  • 6 ounces goat cheese

For the topping: 

  • 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup pine nuts, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, finely chopped

Make the peppers: 

Accidental Locavore Peppers for RoastingRoast the chiles directly over a gas flame or on a baking sheet 4” below a very hot broiler, turning regularly to make sure all the surfaces are well blackened and blistered.

Place in a bowl, cover and let stand for 5 minutes.

Rub the skins off the peppers and then cut a slit starting ½” from the top and going to the tip of the pepper. At the top, make a ½” cut on either side of the opening.

Open up the chiles and remove the seeds. Rinse the insides and place them cut side down on a paper towel to drain.

Remove the chorizo from the casings and crumble into a 12” non-stick skillet over high heat. Cook for 5 minutes, using a spoon to break up any large chunks, until the sausage is nicely browned.

Lower the temperature to medium, add the onions and salt. Stir to combine, then cover and cook until the onion is soft, about 10 minutes.

Remove from the heat and let cool completely.

Once cooled, crumble the goat cheese over the mixture and stir to combine.

Stuff each pepper with ¼ of the mixture. Fold the chile around the stuffing, leaving a gap in the center (see top photo).

Place the stuffed chiles in a 13×9” casserole and cover tightly with aluminum foil.

To bake the chiles, heat the oven to 375°. Place the foil covered dish in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.

Make the topping:

Heat the olive oil in a small non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the bread crumbs and nuts. Cook for about 3 minutes, stirring until the mixture is golden brown. Remove from heat, add the cilantro and set aside.

When the chiles are cooked, remove the dish from the oven, sprinkle the topping over the dish, serve and enjoy!

Accidental Locavore Peppers PlatedMy verdict: These were good, but not great and I’m not sure why. It could have been that I was too cautious about the potential for heat from the peppers and the chorizo and neither of them were hot at all.

The poblanos I got from the farm were small, so I used 9 of them and had some filling left. We had some lovely Argentinian chorizo from Barb’s Butchery and it was good with the goat cheese. The original recipe called for chayote or zucchini to be cooked with the onion, but we didn’t have any, so I left it out.

What’s good about this recipe is that you can stuff the peppers and make the breadcrumb mix ahead of time and bake them at your convenience, which is what I did.

While the chiles were baking, I made a batch of green rice to serve with them. When I had them as leftovers the next day for lunch, I chopped up the peppers and mixed them in with the rice and liked that just as much as the original dish.

 

 

 

 

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What’s Your Most Hated Vegetable?

by Anne Maxfield on June 13, 2016

Accidental Locavore Crushed BeetsThe Accidental Locavore is not a fan of beets. Let me be honest here…I despise beets!

I will not eat them cooked.

I will not eat them raw.

I will not eat them borshted.

I will not eat them pickled.

I will not eat them red.

I will not eat them golden (and I will hate you for trying to make them look like edible vegetables!).

I do not like the color.

I do not like the smell.

Somewhere in my childhood, something traumatic must have happened with beets. If you ask my brother or my dad they’ll give you the same response: “Might as well eat dirt.”

My mother when quizzed, takes no responsibility for this family-wide disgust. Instead when asked, she tried to deflect it to her two sisters. I can count the number of meals I’ve had cooked by either of them on the fingers of one hand (probably with fingers to spare, but I won’t exaggerate), so I really doubt they have anything to do with it. Sorry Mom.

Accidental Locavore Beets for RoastingThe ironic side of this tale is that I am married to a man who loves beets as much as I loathe them.

When they come up in my CSA what do I do?

Trying not to inhale, I cut the tops off leaving about an inch of green (supposedly this keeps them from “bleeding” too much), wash them and wrap each beet in aluminum foil (drizzle a little olive oil on if you’d like, star anise, orange juice and peel for getting fancy).

Toss them on a cookie sheet in a 375 degree oven for about 45 minutes (depending on size) until they are tender. When they’ve cooled off enough to touch, the skins should slip right off.

Then it’s up to the person who likes them to chill and slice up in a salad with goat cheese, or while still warm “pickle” them by quartering them and tossing with some red wine vinegar and chopped red onion. Chill or cool to room temperature. Serve and enjoy.

Accidental Locavore Farm Box Week 3

Do you have a vegetable you won’t eat under any circumstances? What is it?

 

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Orecchiette With Broccoli Rabe and Goat Cheese

by Anne Maxfield on June 18, 2015

Accidental Locavore Broccoli RabeHappily, for the Accidental Locavore, my CSA has started and this year there’s been plenty of broccoli rabe. Orcchiette with sausage and broccoli rabe has always been one of my favorites, so when I saw this on Saveur’s website, I started chopping! Serves 2 hungry people and comes together quickly:

  • 1 bunch broccoli rabe (about ¾ pound), roughly chopped
  • 13cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 large cloves garlic, crushed
  • crushed red chile flakes, to taste
  • ½ box orecchiette
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 ounces of goat cheese, softened
  • Salt

Accidental Locavore Broccoli Rabe and SausageBring a large pot of heavily salted water to boil for the pasta. Cook the orecchiette until just al dente.

Steam the broccoli rabe until crisp-tender. I used a covered dish in the microwave for 2 minutes.

When the broccoli is cooked, add the olive oil to a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until golden, about 3 minutes. Add the red pepper flakes and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the broccoli rabe, toss in the oil and reduce the heat to low.

Drain the pasta, reserving ½ cup of the pasta water, and add to the pan, along with the lemon zest. Increase the heat to high and slowly add the pasta water, stirring until it’s absorbed. Taste and add salt and red pepper flakes as needed. Serve, topped with dollops of the goat cheese and enjoy

Accidental Locavore Pasta With Broccoli RabeMy verdict: Yummy! Between adding the pasta water to make a sauce and the goat cheese, it’s a wonderful, creamy pasta. I’ve made it twice, the second time adding a large piece of Italian sausage that I crumbled up and cooked before adding the garlic etc. Frank loved it, which is a sign that’s it’s a good dish, as he’s not terribly fond of broccoli rabe. Funnily, both times I’ve made it, I’ve wanted to toss some toasted pine nuts into it, but both times was too lazy to go toast them. Some chopped olives, or sautéed mushrooms might be nice too.

Accidental Locavore Fasta PastaSpeaking of lazy, one of the chores we both hate is washing the pasta pot. That’s changed since we discovered Fasta Pasta. It’s a microwave pasta cooker (if you’re Italian and/or fussy about cooking pasta, just skip this) and it works like crazy! It’s a box that you fill with pasta and water and pop in the microwave. When it’s done, add the lid and it drains the pasta. There’s a chart that gives you amounts and times. What it doesn’t tell you, is that like most pasta, it’s much better when you add a healthy dose of salt to the water. If you’re cooking for a crowd, you’re probably better off with the traditional pot, but for a couple of people it’s just genius! It’s dishwasher safe and takes up much less space than the pasta pot (that we store it in).

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A Good Fall Recipe: Turnip Gratin

by Anne Maxfield on October 10, 2013

Accidental Locavore TurnipsSometimes you just have to let go and live with the consequences. This was the case recently when the Accidental Locavore asked her husband to pick up the CSA share for the week. He tried to make it a test by choosing a bunch of turnips and challenging me to come up with something interesting with them. I was working on the rack of lamb idea and thought some version of a gratin would be interesting with the lamb. Serves 4-6 as a side dish.

  • 2 pounds turnips, peeled and sliced very thin (use a mandoline or the thinnest slicing disk on your food processor)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup milk
  • 3 large cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 small bunch thyme
  • 2 tablespoons butter, plus more for greasing the dish
  • ½ cup goat cheese, crumbled
  • ½ cup Parmesan cheese

Accidental Locavore Turnip GratinPreheat the oven to 375°. Put the cream, milk, garlic and thyme in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and set aside to steep for 15-20 minutes. While the cream is steeping, peel and slice the turnips and grease a gratin pan or baking dish (about 11×7”). Layer in 1/2 of the turnips. Sprinkle with ½ of the two cheeses and dot with ½ of the butter. Remove the thyme from the cream and pour ½ of it over the turnips. Repeat with the rest of the turnips, cheeses, butter and cream mixture.

Cover the dish with foil, place on a baking sheet (easier to clean than the oven) and bake for 35-40 minutes. Remove the foil and cook for another 20 minutes until golden brown. Let the dish rest for about 10 minutes, serve and enjoy!

My verdict: Needs work. It tasted pretty good, and looked lovely, but my turnips were a little chewy. Might just need a little longer in the oven (or more thinly sliced turnips – I used the 3mm disk). The goat cheese mellowed the peppery flavor of the turnips, so maybe a little more goat and a little less Parmesan. I also tossed the garlic cloves in with the gratin, as who doesn’t like roasted garlic (but if you should be that person, toss the garlic and the thyme). I think the other secret to this dish is not to tell anyone its turnips, as my family wasn’t too interested but probably would have eaten it all up if they thought it was potatoes. What do you think?

Someone commented on HuffPost that she cooked the turnips in the milk and cream mix, then layered them. She said it came out wonderfully. Great idea!

And if you’re being really fussy, yes, those are French turnips from the market in Nice. Beautiful, n’est pas?

 

 

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