Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Good Eats Weekly Newsletter - April 26, 2017


Localvore Members 
& Full Veggie Only Share Members
take a LIGHT GREEN BAG

This week your bag contains:
Mesclun Mix, Red Russian Kale (or chard), Adirondack Red Potatoes, Rainbow Carrots, 

And OUT of the Bag:
Frozen Cauliflower
Frozen Sweet Peppers
Basil
Please, only take 1 of each




Half Veggie Members
take a YELLOW BAG containing:
Mesclun Mix, Red Beets, Chard, Rainbow Carrots, Adirondack Red Potatoes, and

And OUT of the Bag:
Frozen Rhubarb




Localvore / Pantry Offerings

All Souls Tortilleria Tortillas
Pete's Greens Salsa
Morningstar Farm Black Beans
Sweet Rowen Farmstead Cheese Curds


Delivery Issues


If there is a shortage at your pick up site and you go home without one of the items you should have received, please email us! We want to know, and we want to fix it for you. Please don't just write it on the check off sheets. Those sheets may not make it back to us and we may miss your note.

Did you know that root vegetables are still very much alive after they have been harvested and entered storage? All winter, our carrots have been storing and sweetening in their cool slumber.

It's that time of year when our storage veggies are winding down and our planting is ramping up. We try to catch any errant vegetables that may not be top notch, but we are not always successful. 

If you ever have produce that is not top quality, please let me know! We will send replacement veggies if something gets by us. 
Pete's Musings

It's been a slow start to the spring - good time to have ample greenhouses! But now it's dried out and we're ready to roll. Our main crop of onions and potatoes will be planted this week; this is earlier than normal as many of the diseases that affect both crops get harder to combat later in the summer.
Cover cropping is about to begin in earnest. These are crops that we grow to improve soil, reduce weed pressure, fix nitrogen from the air (in the case of legumes), or make straw for mulching vegetables or bedding pigs. The cover crop world is complex and diverse with an almost infinite variety of crop mixes and planting dates to achieve a wide variety of goals. So it's very interesting and there is always something more to be learned. 
This year we will be using a lot of mustard for cover crop. There is a special variety of mustard called Caliente that has been bred to be very high in glucosinolates (the compound that makes mustards taste spicy). The plants grow tall and flower and then are chopped finely with a flail mower (right) so that they are in lots of little pieces. Those pieces are immediately incorporated into the soil and then rolled to help seal the soil surface. The gasses are trapped in the soil and are powerful enough that they kill weed seeds (this is our favorite part) and also can help reduce harmful soil nematodes and certain soil diseases. The plants also produce ample organic matter for feeding the soil. We're going to run some trials this year to see how effective this can be at reducing the number of live weed seeds in the soil.
Back to farming! 

~ Pete

Storage and Use Tips 
Mesclun Mix: Lettuce, arugula, and brassica mix comprise this week's mesclun mix. 
Basil (Full shares only): This marvelous herb is a member of the mint family. It is a staple in Mediterranean cooking as well as Thai, Vietnamese, and Laotian. The herb is highly aromatic, or put another way, the oils in basil are highly volatile. Thus, it is best to add the herb near the end of the cooking process so it will retain its maximum essence and flavor. Basil should be kept in a plastic bag or kept stem-down in a glass of water with plastic over the leaves, for about a week with regular water changing. Keep your basil out of extreme cold as it could damage the fragile leaves.
**All the basil for Full Veggie Share members will be in a large plastic bag. Please take 1 bunch if you have a Full Veggie or Localvore share.**
Red Russian Kale (Full shares only): Full share members will receive either rainbow chard or red Russian kale. This kale is straight from our greenhouses and the first harvest! Red Russian kale is a green kale with purple stems, and while these leaves are tender enough to eat raw, cooking adds a sweetness and tenderness that makes these greens just as versatile as chard. Store in your crisper drawer loosely wrapped in plastic.
Chard (Half shares): Rainbow Chard is a delicious nutritious green, high in Vitamins A, K, and C.  The beautifully colored stems are why it's called rainbow chard!  Chard works great as a spinach substitute but needs to be cooked down a bit longer.  It also works well in soups and stews, or sauteed as a side. Store in your crisper drawer loosely wrapped in plastic.

Clean Rainbow Carrots: This week we're putting in some clean baby carrots to your veggie offerings! Typically we send out loose carrots that are pre-washed. These carrots have been lightly brushed to make them bright and tender (which is why they are bagged - to keep them clean). These baby sized carrots are perfect for snacking! They're a great size to munch on for a mid-day or after school snack, or as part of your packed lunch. Because these carrots have been scrubbed clean, they have a slightly shorter shelf life than other carrots. Use within a week for best freshness. Store carrots loosely wrapped in a plastic bag in your crisper drawer. 

Erick and Alison bagging CSA clean carrots yesterday!

Adirondack Red Potatoes:  Adirondack Red potatoes have a bright red skin and an even more vibrant interior! Use these purplish red potatoes, which do lighten some after cooking, as vibrant home fries for dinner or breakfast. Store in a cool, dry, dark place.​

Frozen Peppers (Full Shares only): Our multi-colored peppers are washed, chopped, bagged and frozen within hours of harvest. Frozen peppers won't be crisp like fresh peppers but retain all the flavor and yummy summer goodness. To use them, simply remove package from the freezer, slice open bag, and then either thaw and add to your dish, or chop just what you need frozen and toss directly into your skillet. If you use the latter method, you can toss unused frozen veggies back into the freezer for later use. 

Need to Skip a Week?

If you're ever not able to pick up your share, please let us know at least one week in advance. We can either skip your share and give you credit, send it the next week, or donate it to the food pantry. It's up to you!

Sorry, we cannot skip a share or change pick-up sites after noon on Monday.

Localvore Lore
It's a week for eating Mexican-style dishes with Vermont ingredients! The corn tortillas come from All Souls Tortilleria in the Mad River Valley (organic corn sourced from New York), the organic black beans from Morningstar Farm and the Sweet Rowen Farmstead Cheese Curds are from Glover, and the salsas (either tomatillo or salsa roja - please only take one) come from our farm in Craftsbury. That's some local collaboration!

        
Store the tortillas in the freezer unless you're going to use them right away. They are made fresh without any preservatives and do not have a super long shelf life when not frozen. Store the black beans in an airtight container and keep dry. The salsa is also frozen. After thawing, use within a week. If the cheese curds stick around for more than a few days, whoa!  

You can click here for more info on preparing dried black beans.


Recipes
You can find more recipes by searching our website and/or our blog

Home Fries
There are two secrets to making great home fries, if you ask me. The first is cooking the onions separately. As potatoes need to cook quite a bit longer than onions, it saves them from become burnt specks by the time the potatoes are ready. The second is more of a shortcut (so you can make them more often because they’re easier!) which is that I reduce the pan-frying time by half cooking them in the microwave first. As the best French fries are twice-cooked, this follows that line of reasoning well, yielding home fries with a soft center and crisp edges.

1 1/2 pounds potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/2-inch to 3/4-inch cubes
4 tablespoons salted butter
1 onions, finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
Seasoning of your choice: Garlic powder or salt work great, as does smoky Spanish paprika or chopped chives

Arrange potatoes in large microwave-safe bowl, top with 1 tablespoon butter, and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Microwave on high until edges of potatoes begin to soften, 5 to 7 minutes, shaking bowl (without removing plastic) to redistribute potatoes halfway through cooking.

Meanwhile, melt 1 tablespoon butter in large regular or nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened and golden brown, about 6 minutes. Transfer to small bowl.

Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter in now-empty skillet over medium heat. Add potatoes and pack down with spatula. Cook, without moving, until underside of potatoes is brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn potatoes, pack down again, and continue to cook until well browned and crisp, 5 to 7 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking, stirring potatoes every few minutes, until crusty and golden on all sides, 9 to 12 minutes. Stir in onion, seasonings of your choice and salt and pepper to taste.

Sauteed Swiss Chard
I like this recipe because it uses the entire chard- stems and all! 

1 bunch Swiss chard, stems and leaves separated, stems chopped and leaves sliced into 1-inch thick strips
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Fill a large bowl with ice water.  Add the chard stems to the boiling water and blanch for 2 to 3 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer the stems to the ice bath and let cool completely.  Drain the stems and set aside.

Melt the butter in a medium skillet.  Add the chard leaves, stirring to coat.  Cover and cook until wilted, stirring occasionally.  Add the chard stems, brown sugar, vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.

Beet, Kale and Carrot Salad

½ cup uncooked quinoa
⅓ silvered almonds or roasted winter squash seeds
1 medium raw beet, peeled
1 medium to large carrot, peeled
2 cups packed green kale, roughly chopeed
1 avocado cubed

--- Vinaigrette ---
3 T apple cider vinegar
2 t lemon juice
2 T sunflower oil or olive oil
2 T maple syrup
1 t dijon mustard
Salt and pepper to taste

Rinse the quinoa in a fine mesh colander under running water.

In a medium-sized pot, combine the rinsed quinoa and 1 cup water. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover the pot, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 15 min.

Remove the quinoa from heat and let it rest, still covered for 5 min.

Uncover pot, drain off an excess liquid and set it aside to cool.

Grate the beet and carrot by hand or with a food processor. Place in a large bowl and add the rest of the salad ingredients.

To prepare the vinaigrette: Whisk together all of the ingredients until emulsified. Drizzle dressing over the mixture and toss to combine.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Rhubarb Dream Bars 

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1/3 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup cold butter or margarine
1 1/4 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 cups finely chopped rhubarb
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup flaked coconut

In a bowl, combine 1 cup flour and confectioners' sugar. Cut in the butter until crumbly. Pat into a lightly greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees F for 13-15 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.

In a bowl, combine the sugar and remaining flour. Add eggs; mix well. Stir in rhubarb, walnuts and coconut; pour over crust. Bake 30-35 minutes longer or until set. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into bars.

Carrot Rhubarb Muffins
makes 12 muffins

2½ cups rolled oats (gluten-free if desired), plus extra for sprinkling if desired
½ cup coconut sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
4 to 6 spring carrots, unpeeled, roughly chopped
¾ cup raw walnuts (optional)
2 thin stalks rhubarb
Knob of coconut oil, for greasing the tin (or use muffin liners)
¼ cup pure maple syrup
1 cup unsweetened applesauce

Measure out 1 1⁄2 cups of the rolled oats and put them in a food processor. Pulse until you have a coarse flour. Put the flour in a large bowl, and add the remaining 1 cup rolled oats and the coconut sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, sea salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Stir to combine.

Pulse the carrots in the food processor until they are roughly minced. Put the carrots in a medium bowl. Pulse the walnuts a couple of times in the food processor until roughly chopped, and then add them to the carrots. Slice the rhubarb into thin disks and add to the carrots.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a muffin tin with coconut oil (or line it with muffin liners).

Add the maple syrup and applesauce to the oat mixture, and mix just to combine. Then fold in the carrots, rhubarb, and walnuts.

Fill the muffin cups with dollops of the batter; sprinkle with a few rolled oats if desired. Bake in the oven for 25 to 35 minutes, until the muffins are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let cool for 5 to 10 minutes before removing from the tin.

Loaded Nachos
Nachos are a perfect meal to modify with what you have on hand. I love the idea of sauteing chard or another green to add to the mix, and serving this with a big heaping green salad (or better yet, combining them into a taco salad!).

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 whole Yellow Onion, Diced
2 pounds Ground Beef (optional- or sub a non-meat alternative like tofu)
1/2 teaspoon Chili Powder
1/2 teaspoon Paprika
1/2 teaspoon Cumin
1/4 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper
1 can (14-5 Ounce) Beans (or try 1/4 pound dried beans)
1/2 cup Hot Water
Tortilla Chips
Frozen sweet peppers
1-1/2 cup Grated Cheddar Cheese
1-1/2 cup Monterey Jack Cheese (or throw on some cheese curds)
6 whole Roma Tomatoes, Diced
1 whole Jalapeno, Diced Finely
1/2 bunch Cilantro Leaves, Chopped
Juice Of 1 Lime
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 whole Avocado (optinoal)
Sour Cream (optional)

In a skillet over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and half the onion. Cook it until starting to soften, then add the ground beef. Cook the meat until it's totally browned, then drain the fat. Add the chili powder, paprika, cumin, crushed red pepper, salt, and pepper and stir to combine. Add the beans and hot water and stir. Reduce the heat to low and simmer while you prepare the other ingredients.

To make the pico de gallo, combine the other half of the onion with the tomato, jalapeno, cilantro, lime juice, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir it together and set it aside.

To build the nachos, place a layer of tortilla chips on a platter or plate. Top with a layer of the beef/bean mixture, then all but 1/4 cup of the cheddar cheese. Add another layer of chips, another layer of the beef/bean mixture, and the Monterey Jack cheese. Then add on sweet peppesr. Add a final small layer of chips, then a small layer of beef and beans, then a final sprinkling of cheddar. 

Microwave in 45 second increments until the cheese is melted and bubbly. (You may also place the platter into a 325 degree oven if it's heatproof. Just leave it in until the cheese is melted.)

Immediately sprinkle on the diced avocado and plenty of pico de gallo.

Optional: Add dollops of sour cream here and there!
  

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Good Eats Weekly Newsletter - April 19, 2017



Localvore Members 
& Full Veggie Only Share Members
take a LIGHT GREEN BAG

This week your bag contains:
Mesclun Mix, Spinach, Cilantro, Green Garlic, Red Beets, Russet Potatoes,

And OUT of the Bag:
Frozen Beans
Frozen Corn 
Please, only take 1 of each




Half Veggie Members
take a YELLOW BAG containing:
Mesclun Mix, Spinach, Rainbow Carrots, Yellow Onions,

And OUT of the Bag:
Frozen Beans
Basil!




Localvore / Pantry Offerings

Slowfire Bakery Bread
Tangletown Farm Eggs
Ploughgate Creamery Butter
Lazy Lady Farm Cheese
and
Pete's Greens/ Champlain Orchards Carrot- Apple Squeeze

Seafood, Greens, Nuts, and Beans

I was listening to The Splendid Table on VPR this Sunday and heard an interview with Dr. Drew Ramsey, a psychiatrist and author of Eat Complete.

Dr. Ramsey's new book is about using food as medication, specifically for mental health. The book sounds fascinating and the interview is a great teaser.

Eating a lot of leafy greens provides a high nutrient density and can serve as a base for many dishes, says Dr. Ramsey.

As Dr. Ramsey says, "Some people are big pharma - I'm little farmer. I think that's really where the best medicine comes from for the foundation of your health." We can help you with eating a lot of leafy greens! Thanks for making us your farmer pharmacy!

Click here to read a transcript of the interview, listen to the interview, or find out more from The Splendid Table.
Around the Farm...

Lots of fresh stuff from the greenhouses up this week! I'm excited to have so much fresh goodness for you. Perfect in time for Earth Day as we celebrate and honor our wonderful natural world. I love being a part of a business that takes the health of our planet into consideration - from our solar powered barn to our organic growing practices, living roof of our farmstand and Waterbury store, and the fact we provide so much good food to Vermonters year round, reducing the food miles traveled between farm and plate. 

We have so much fresh goodness that we're starting a short Late Spring Share on May 3. If you're already a Spring Share member, no need to sign up! You're already ready to go! If you've sent checks or paid online through our high-tech online payment system, we'll hold that payment for a future share (or return you your check). We are signing up for the Summer Share season, though!

For those of you in the NEK, we're exploring starting a CSA site in Glover. If you know anyone in that area interested in joining Pete's Greens, please have them contact me!

You'll notice this week's newsletter is light on pictures. Check out our Instagram page for lots of pictures from the farm! No need to wait until the newsletter rolls around... we post regularly!

Thanks!
~ Taylar

Storage and Use Tips 
Mesclun Mix: Lettuce is here! The mesclun mix this week features our first cuts of lettuce plus claytonia and a little baby brassica mix. The mesclun is washed and ready to eat right out of the bag.
Basil (half shares only): This marvelous herb is a member of the mint family. It is a staple in Mediterranean cooking as well as Thai, Vietnamese, and Laotian. The herb is highly aromatic, or put another way, the oils in basil are highly volatile. Thus, it is best to add the herb near the end of the cooking process so it will retain its maximum essence and flavor. Basil should be kept in a plastic bag or kept stem-down in a glass of water with plastic over the leaves, for about a week with regular water changing. Keep your basil out of extreme cold as it could damage the fragile leaves.
**All the basil for Half Veggie Share members will be in a large plastic bag.**
Fresh Green Garlic: What a treat we have for you this week! This green garlic, also called garlic scallions, is a bulb of fresh garlic. You can eat the entire stalk - every bit of the green leaf is edible! These are young garlic plants that have not bulbed up fully. While these little gems look a lot like bunching onions, take a closer look and you'll see that their leaves are flat, not tubular, and they have a distinct garlic aroma (they're just inches away as I type this and the smell is incredible!). It can be stored in your fridge wrapped in a wet paper towel and wrapped in plastic for about a week. To prep, treat it like a small leek: trim off the very bottom of the bulb and use all the tender light green parts. Dark green leaves can also be saved for stock.
Spinach: Large leaf spinach for all shares this week! Spinach is high in iron and can be eaten raw or cooked. Store it in the plastic bag in your crisper drawer.
Russet Potatoes: Also known as Idaho or baking potatoes, Russets are in the class of starchy potatoes, as opposed to waxy varieties like red and fingerling. They are high in vitamin C and B6, as well as natural sugars. Russets make great baking potatoes, and are ideal for mashing and making fries. Store potatoes in a cool dark place.  Storing your potatoes in the refrigerator can make their starch turn to sugar and therefore should be avoided as doing so can give the russet potato an unpleasant, sweet taste.​
Cilantro (Large shares only): A member of the carrot family and related to parsley, cilantro is the leaves and stems of the coriander plant (the seeds of the same plant are the spice known as coriander). Cilantro has a very pungent odor and is widely used in Mexican, Caribbean, and Asian cooking. The leaves and stems can be chopped and added to salads, soups, and sauces and can garnish many meals. Toss cilantro into any Mexican dish. If you can't use all your cilantro just yet and wish to save it for a future dish, you can freeze it by washing and gently drying it with paper towels. Then put sprigs loosely in a plastic bag and freeze, or lightly chop cilantro, measure by the tablespoon into ice trays, fill remaning space in ice tray with water, and after cubes are frozen, store in a plastic bag. You can take one out and thaw it anytime you need to use it.
Rainbow Carrots: Large, multi-colored carrots have a lot of kitchen functionality. Enjoy them raw or cooked, on their own or as flavor to a variety of other dishes. Store carrots loosely wrapped in a plastic bag in your crisper drawer. 


Need to Skip a Week?

If you're ever not able to pick up your share, please let us know at least one week in advance. We can either skip your share and give you credit, send it the next week, or donate it to the food pantry. It's up to you!

Sorry, we cannot skip a share or change pick-up sites after noon on Monday.

Localvore Lore

After last week's Localvore/ Pantry debacle, this week should be a breeze! I have checked and double checked and triple checked that all of our items are here and accounted for. I am so sorry for all of the confusion last week. This week, Localvore / Pantry members will pick up:
1 loaf of Slowfire Bakery Bread
1 dozen Tangletown Eggs
1 pack of Ploughgate Butter
1 piece of Lazy Lady Cheese
and
1 pint of Carrot-Apple Squeeze

This week's bread from Slowfire Bakery is Alt-Country Bread: a spelt and corn variation on our everyday sourdough. Whole spelt, spelt flakes (like oatmeal but with spelt), and cornmeal provide a nice contrast between the flecks of texture and the hints of sweetness and nuttiness they contribute.

We know this is a special food system in the NEK when even the hens eat well! Lila let me know that her Tangletown Farm hens have been feasting on cheese and apples lately - stuff that doesn't sell at other stores and a day or two past date (but is still good to eat!) that she gets from a local food delivery driver (top picture). The hens are mostly inside these days as they wait for the fields to dry out. It's great to see how food is recycled and how producers collaborate! And how wonderfully animals get along - like this hen and pig!

Ploughgate Creamery provides this delicious butter, artisanly made in Fayston at the Bragg Farm by Marisa Mauro. This butter is made from Vermont cows, milked nearby the Ploughgate Creamery, and is cultured for 48 hours before being churned. This process gives the butter a distinct, slightly tangy, taste. Enjoy this fresh, lightly salted butter.

And a special surprise: As happens in the farm and food world up here from time to time, Laini Fondillier of Lazy Lady Farm sent a message that she had a special batch of cheese that was an accidental surprise. As Laini tells it, she was trying to make a "camemblue" cheese (camembert plus blue culture then misted with penicillium candidum until it blooms and you let it ripen) when the blue failed to get inside the rind. She has extra wheels of of this new "Whisper" cheese and we thought it would be a nice sweet complement to the share this week. This cheese is ready to eat and should be eaten within the next week or so.

And now that the suspense is built up... We're excited to share with you our new collaboration project: the Carrot- Apple Squeeze! We don't typically include beverages in the pantry share but this is an exciting new project for us. Inside every pint of this juice is one pound of Pete's Greens organic rainbow carrots and two pounds of Champlain Orchards sustainably grown apples! This is a great way to get a serving of fruits AND veggies AND keep it local! Pints are available at select retailers around Vermont. If your local store doesn't carry it, ask them to contact Champlain Orchards! 

Recipes

Here are a couple recipes to help you stir up the creative culinary juices this week. You can find more recipes by searching our website and/or our blog

Cilantro Potato Salad
Recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse. Serves 5-6.
1 cup mayonnaise
3/4 cup cilantro leaves
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 pounds potatoes, cooked and halved (unpeeled)
1/3 cup finely minced onions

In a bowl, stir together mayonnaise with cilantro, garlic, salt and 7 turns black pepper. Add potatoes and onions and toss to combine thoroughly; cover and refrigerate up to 24 hours before serving.

Russet Potato Hash

1# russet potatoes
1 green pepper
1 yellow onion
3 tablespoons butter
salt and pepper

Quarter the potatoes and boil them in water with a little salt for about 20 minutes.  Slice and sautee the onion and pepper in butter, while the potatoes boil.  Set the onions and peppers aside.  Drain the potatoes when they are soft but still a little undercooked.  Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the same pan you already used, and pack the potatoes down into the pan.  Cook, without moving, until underside of potatoes is brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn potatoes, pack down again, and continue to cook until well browned and crisp, another 5 to 7 minutes.

Reduce heat to medium-low and continue cooking, stirring potatoes every few minutes, until crusty and golden on all sides. Stir in onions and peppers, and salt and pepper as you like it.

Spanish Tortilla
From Eating Well Magazine. Don't confuse this with the flour or corn tortillas you use to make wraps. A Spanish tortilla is a potato-and-egg omelet found on numerous menus throughout Spain. Traditionally these are cooked in heaps of olive oil. Our version uses less oil, so it's lower in calories. Serves 6.

3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 cup cooked diced potatoes
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
6 large eggs
4 large egg whites
1/2 cup shredded Manchego or Jack cheese
3 cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Cilantro

Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add potatoes, thyme and paprika and cook for 2 minutes more.

Lightly whisk eggs and egg whites in a large bowl. Gently stir the potato mixture into the eggs along with cheese, spinach, salt and pepper until combined. Wipe the pan clean; add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and heat over medium heat. Pour in the egg mixture, cover and cook until the edges are set and the bottom is browned, 4 to 5 minutes (it will still be moist in the center).

To flip the tortilla, run a spatula gently around the edges to loosen them. Invert a large plate over the pan and turn out the tortilla onto it. Slide the tortilla back into the pan and continue cooking until completely set in the middle, 3 to 6 minutes. Garnish with cilantro. Serve warm or cold.

Active time: 25 minutes | Total: 40 minutes | To make ahead: Store airtight in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. 

Asian Speedy Beans
This is a quick and easy way to cook your frozen beans while adding some gourmet flavors. The recipe is intended to be an alternative method to steaming the beans, and can be made with just cooking oil, salt and pepper or any kind of seasoning you like. Use a chili seasoning for Mexican beans or curry for curried beans. The options are limitless.

1 lb bag of frozen green beans
1 tbs cooking oil
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 Tbs ginger root, grated
2 cloves garlic, pressed and minced
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the cooking oil in a non-stick pan over high heat. When the oil begins to pop, about 3 minutes, add the frozen beans. Cook the beans, stirring every 30 seconds, until all of the ice has melted and most of the water in the pan has evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger root, garlic and salt. Continue to saute in sauce for another 3-5 minutes, until about half the beans begin to brown. Remove the pan from heat and serve.