Vegetarian French Onion Soup

Vegetarian French Onion Soup

All of the onions from this weeks farm share made me wonder what I could make with a ton of onions.  I myself (or my husband for that matter) are members of the onion appreciation committee.   BUT my mother-in-law is an onion fanatic.  Fanatic in a sense that she will sneak onions from the cutting board and steal cooking onions from the pot on the stove.  So, I figured what else can I do with 3 pounds of onion?  French onion soup!  This version uses vegetable broth instead of the traditional beef stock – making it suitable for the veggie crowd.  If you’re looking to make a vegan version, swap the butter with olive oil and use a vegan cheese.

This dish, as simple as it is does take some time to prepare but is well worth the wait!  Enjoy!

 

RECOMMENDED SUPPLIES:  Soup crocks!
If you do not have soup crocks on hand, you CAN use a casorole dish and layer your bread and cheese on top of it.

Vegetarian French Onion Soup
Servings Prep Time
6-8 30 minutes
Cook Time
90 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6-8 30 minutes
Cook Time
90 minutes
Vegetarian French Onion Soup
Servings Prep Time
6-8 30 minutes
Cook Time
90 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6-8 30 minutes
Cook Time
90 minutes
Ingredients
Croutons
Servings:
Instructions
  1. In a stock pot of dutch oven over medium-low heat, add butter and sliced yellow onions. Stir until they are well coated with the melted butter.
  2. Cover and allow to cook for about 25 minutes until they are soft and translucent.
  3. Remove lid and increase heat to medium-high to begin caramelizing. Add 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and stir frequently until the onions become golden brown. If they look like they are cooking too rapidly, reduce your heat! Be careful not to burn.
  4. Once your onions have caramelized, Deglaze the pan with 1/2 cup of white wine. Stir stir stir until you scrap up all of the fond from the pot.
  5. Once the wine has cooked off, deglaze again with the cognac stirring and scraping the pan.
  6. Reduce heat to medium-low and add your flour, stirring frequently to form a thick paste for about 2-3 minut. If this doesn't happen, add another tablespoon of butter.
  7. Add the vegetable stock, thyme and bay leaves to the pot and stir well. Cover and allow to simmer for 30 minutes.
  8. While your soup is simmers, now is a great time to make your "croutes" - aka toasted bread. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Drizzle each side of the bread slices with olive oil and place on a baking sheet. Cook the bread for 15 minutes on each side until they are toasty and hard. Remove from oven and set aside.
  9. Increase oven temperature to 350.
  10. Back to the soup... Remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs and discard. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  11. Pour your soup into several soup crocks and add a few thinly sliced raw shallots on top.
  12. Layer a couple pieces of croutes on top. Then add a thick layer of shredded Swiss cheese on top, making sure you cover the bread well to prevent it from burning.
  13. Place soup crocks on a baking dish (trust me, the cheese will melt and make a huge mess if you don't do this). Place in the oven for 30 minutes until cheese has browned. Depending on your oven, you may have to turn it to broil for a couple minutes to achieve the browned cheesy goodness.
  14. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before serving. Enjoy!
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Parsnip and Rutabaga gratin

Parsnip and Rutabaga Gratin

A great alternative to potato gratin (and all of the carbs that goes along with it).  I usually make my gratin with potatoes but having a diabetic father-in-law requires a little tweeking of some of my recipes.  This recipe is a great lower carb alternative and is still quite decadent!  I topped it off with a little bit of the Black Sheep Creamery cheese that was included in the most recent farm share but can be swapped out with an aged manchego or romano cheese.  The caramelizing of the leeks and shallots add a wonderful depth of flavor to the dish.  Enjoy!

Parsnip and Rutabaga Gratin
Servings Prep Time
6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
Parsnip and Rutabaga Gratin
Servings Prep Time
6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a medium sized baking dish, layer thinly sliced rutabagas and parsnips (about 1/8 inch). Set aside.
  3. In a large saucepan, heat butter over medium-low heat. Add leeks and shallots and cook; stirring frequently until golden brown for about 20 minutes.
  4. Stir in flour and flour and cook until smooth, whisking out any lumps for about 2 minutes.
  5. Add heavy cream and fresh thyme. Stir for about 3-4 minutes until milk is heated. Add shredded smoked fontina cheese and stir until well incorporated and creamy.
  6. Pour half of the cheese mixture over the sliced rutabagas and parsnips. Agitate the baking dish to allow the sauce to coat well; continue pouring the sauce until it barley covers the slices.
  7. Top with grated manchego cheese and bake uncovered for 35 minutes or until tender.
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colcannon with leeks and kale

Colcannon with Leeks and Kale

A traditional Irish recipe! Traditionally served with Kale or Cabbage.  Our version uses kale and caramelized leeks instead of scallions.  Did you know there is also a song about this dish?

Did you ever eat colcannon,
Made with lovely pickled cream
With the greens & scallions mingled
Like a picture in a dream
Did you ever make a hole on top
To hold the melting flake
Or the creamy flavored butter
That your mother used to make

Colcannon with Leeks and Kale
Servings
6 people
Servings
6 people
Colcannon with Leeks and Kale
Servings
6 people
Servings
6 people
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. Put the potatoes and rutabaga in a medium stock pot and cover with cold water by at least a couple inches. Boil until the potatoes are fork tender (15 to 20 minutes). Drain in a colander.
  2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, add olive oil and chopped leeks. Stir frequently and continue to cook until your leeks become golden. (10-15 minutes)
  3. Once your leeks are golden, reduce heat to low. Add chopped kale and 1/2 cup of butter. Cook until kale has wilted.
  4. Return the cooked potatoes and rutabaga to the stove over medium heat in your stock pot. Mash with a potato masher and add 1/2 cup of butter. Add 1 cup of heavy cream and stir until well incorporated.
  5. Fold in your kale, leek and butter mixture into the potatoes. If your potatoes seem a little too think, add a little whole milk to thin them out to your desired consistency. Add salt to taste, garnish with chopped parsley and serve.
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Celery Root Soup

Celery Root Soup

This is one of those simple soups to make.  All it really takes is throwing a few root veggies in a pot, cooking them down and tossing it all into blender and hitting puree.  It’s yuumy, comforting, creamy and healthy!  Blended soups are one of my favorites since they don’t require too much work, just a trusty blender.  This recipe can be kept vegan by omitting the heavy cream and I find it to be just as delicious without it.  Another variation to the truffle oil is adding a few drops of chili oil instead.  I didn’t have any truffle oil on hand when I made this (which I normally use as a finishing touch) but the use of a little spicy chili oil made for a great alternative.

Celery Root Soup
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Celery Root Soup
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6-8 people 15 minutes
Cook Time
45 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: people
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, add olive oil and melt your butter.
  2. Add your chopped leeks to the pot and cook on medium-low for about 10 minutes. When your leeks begin to soften up, add your garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes until fragrant.
  3. Add your vegetable stock, celery root, apples and potato. Reduce heat, cover and allow to simmer for about 45 minutes until all of the veggies are soft.
  4. Add fresh thyme, nutmeg and white pepper. Remove from heat and puree using a hand mixer or you can use a blender (puree in small batches) until creamy and smooth.
  5. Add your heavy cream (optional) or if you want to keep this vegan, you can not add it all or or use almond or coconut milk as a substitute. If your soup is too thick, it can be thinned out with a little additional water.
  6. Return to low heat to bring the soup back up to temperature. Add salt to taste. Serve with minced celery leaves and a few drops of chili oil.
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beans

Nopales Chili Verde with Cranberry Beans

Cranberry beans are a bit sweeter and much more delicate your common kidney beans or pintos traditionally used in chile. They have a wonderful creamy texture and have a mild, nutty flavor that I thought would pair quire well with a verde sauce. I have to be honest, this box ingredient was a bit challenging for me. Why you ask? I’m not a member of the bean appreciation club. Really…. I’ve tried to like them but I have an issue with certain food textures (Don’t ask me how I can possibly cook at all) So with this recipe I HAD to try the beans and honestly, I was quite surprised. They are quite creamier than anticipated. This recipe relied much on my keen sense of smell and my helpful husband with a discerning taste when it comes to beans.

This recipe included a few items that were out of season. Luckily, I had some canned items from last year’s harvest that I was able to incorporate into the dish as well as some green tomatoes that I had an overabundance of. You can do the same or hold off on cooking the sauce until the tomatillos and tomatoes are readily available. It involves A LOT of roasting and a lot of time and patience but is well worth the wait.

If you haven’t prepared cactus (nopoles) before, check out the following link for tips on how to prepare them for the chile: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/technique-of-preparing-nopales-243027

Cranberry Bean Chili Verde
Cranberry Bean Chili Verde
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
The Verde Sauce
  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees on broil.
  2. Peel your onions and cut in half removing the top and bottom. Slice your peppers in half and remove seeds.
  3. Husk your tomatillos and cut off the stems. Slice the tops off of your tomatoes.
  4. In a large baking dish - fill with your tomatillos, tomatoes. On a separate baking sheet, add your onions and add your peppers skin side up. Place in oven on broil for 30-60 minutes until blackened. Your peppers and onions should be done first, around 30 minutes and your tomatoes and tomatillos should be done after an hour depending on their size and your oven. I've never had the same cooking time when it comes to roasting so it's best to check them ever 20 minutes or so until you see the skin turn crisp and black. When done, remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  5. Reserve the red Jalapenos for your topping. Keep the skin on everything (but the onions of course) and in a large food processor or blender, add your roasted tomatillos, tomatoes, onions, pasillas, green jalepenos, garlic, cilantro and juice of two limes. Pour any liquid from the pan into the blender as well. Blend until smooth and add salt to taste.
  6. You should have AT LEAST four cups of salsa verde for your beans. This recipe always has a bit of a variance due to the size and the harvest. Any extra should be reserved for salsa or storage.
The Beans
  1. Rinse your beans and remove any unwanted bits. In a large bowl, cover with water and allow to soak for at least 4 hours.
  2. Peel and julienne your nopoles.
  3. In a dutch oven or thick bottomed pot, add your beans and four cups of the salsa verde sauce. Add cumin, Mexican oregano, vegetable bouillon and nopoles. Cover and heat on low for approximately 6 hours. At the 3 hour mark, check your beans every half hour or so. Does your sauce look too thick? Add a little water to the mix. Depending on how watery your tomatillos and tomatoes where, you may have to add a little water so your sauce isn't overly thick. (Again, this is one of those recipes that requires a little extra attention) At the 5 hour mark, check your beans for doneness. They generally take around 6 hours but I have had them finish cooking out before that. Taste testing is key here!
  4. Once your beans are done, add your Mexican crema to the pot and stir. If you want to keep this recipe vegan, just omit the crema. Serve and top with fresh cilantro, roasted red peppers and a little more crema. Enjoy!
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roulade

Tenderloin Swiss Chard Roulade w/Apples

Every time I open a box of goodies from the farm I feel like I’m on an episode of Chopped. In lieu of of a 30 minute timeline, I usually wind up with some hair-brained idea in the middle of the night. Insomnia I suppose, has it’s benefits. This week’s CSA shipment had some pretty fun ingredients and the following recipe is the result of my late nights tending to a newborn baby. I do what I can and make the best of the time that I have in the wee hours of the morning.

Apples and pork go pretty hand-in-hand right along with the sage. Inside? More pork and that wonderfully colored Swiss Chard create the roulade. In layman’s terms, you pound the heck out of the meat and roll it up. It’s like one of those Little Debbie Swiss Rolls from childhood but in the form of meat. It looks fancy but is quite easy to make and is a sure fire way to impress discerning guests. I decided to pair the tenderloin with some tarragon and roasted cauliflower mashed potatoes ( click here for the recipe ) and it worked out quite well if I say so myself. Enjoy!

Recipe by: Mirinda @ Boistfort Valley Farm
Tenderloin Swiss Chard Roulade w/Braised Apples
Tenderloin Swiss Chard Roulade w/Braised Apples
Ingredients
The Pork
The Chard Filling
The Apples
Servings:
Instructions
The filling
  1. Chop the Swiss chard into 1" pieces, rinse and drain.
  2. In a medium saute pan, add 4oz of pancetta to medium/low heat. Render the fat but keep the heat low enough to avoid burning. This should take less than 10 minutes.
  3. Add the Swiss chard to the pan, stirring and coating evenly with the rendered fat.
  4. Continue to stir and cook on low heat until you've wilted it down. This should take around 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
The meat
  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Slice pork lengthwise, but not all the way through, other side. Open halves, laying pork flat. Place plastic wrap over pork and pound to an even thickness using a meat mallet. Sprinkle evenly on both sides with salt. Spread apple mixture on pork and roll it up.
  3. On the outside of the rolled tenderloin, rub generously with the sage and coat on all sides. Add the meat to a lighly oiled pan. Cover with foil and place in the oven for 20 minutes or until a thermometer inserted in the center registers 145°.
The Apples
  1. In a small sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat.
  2. Peal and thinly slice your shallots (I used onions in the photo since I was all out of shallots - you can do the same if you feel so inclined) Add to the pan and cook until soft.
  3. Slice and quarter your apples into 1/4" pieces. Add to the pan with the apple cider vinegar, sherry, salt and pepper. Cook apples until soft but still firm.
  4. Remove apples from the pan and set aside. Reserve the liquid and continue to cook the liquid until reduced by more than half.
The finale
  1. Remove your meat from the oven and allow to REST for at least 5 minutes. Slice into 1/2 pieces and plate over the apple slices. Gently pour your cider and shallot sauce mixture over the meat and enjoy!
  2. Pairs well with our Roasted Cauliflower and Tarragon Mashed Potatoes!
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taragonmash

Roasted Cauliflower and Tarragon Mashed Potatoes

Roasted Cauliflower and Tarragon Mashed Potatoes
Roasted Cauliflower and Tarragon Mashed Potatoes
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425.
  2. Toss Cauliflower florets in olive oil. Add to baking pan and cook for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
  3. Peel and clean your potatoes. Add to boiling water and cook until soft. Remove from heat, drain and set aside.
  4. In a food processor or blender, add the cauliflower and buttermilk. Puree until smooth. (I like to keep mine a little chunky)
  5. Add the mixture to the pot with the potatoes. With a masher, mash the potatoes with butter and add your tarragon and heavy cream. Add salt to taste.
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