Roasted Cabbage Steaks & Almond Butter Sauce

cabbage steak pic

When you hear the word “steak,” the first thing that comes to mind probably isn’t cabbage. 

We usually associate “steak” with beef or tuna fish or even beefsteak tomatoes (YUM!), but the concept can be applied to other foods as well. This past week, I tried my hand at cauliflower steaks (oh.my.goodness recipe to come!) and cabbage steaks.

First of all, this method of making vegetables is SO EASY. No teeny tiny chopping/dicing/mincing required! You can have the steak slices cut and ready to go in the oven in 5 quick minutes.

All of the anti-cancer benefits of cabbage are preserved best by raw or minimally cooked preparations, but I decided to change things up a bit today by roasting it. It’s always good to add some variety to your meals!

A beautiful head of green cabbage

A beautiful head of green cabbage!

When cabbage is roasted it takes on a sweet, buttery flavor and melt-in-your mouth texture. I can’t even think of anything I’d compare it, too, but the crispy leaves tasted a bit like the outer crunchy leaves of roasted Brussels sprouts – one of my absolutely favorite fall foods!

I drizzled a few spoonfuls of a homemade almond butter sauce on top.

The creamy, slightly tangy sauce seeped into the folds of the buttery cabbage leaves and made for an amazing bite!

If you’ve never had cabbage prepared this way before (I didn’t even eat cabbage at all until about 2 years ago!), then you have to try this 🙂

Make sure you put a head of green cabbage in your Hometown Harvest bag this week!

cabbage steak pic

Cabbage steak with tangy almond butter sauce. YUM!

Cabbage steak with tangy almond butter sauce. YUM!

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Ingredients

Cabbage Steaks

  • 1 head green cabbage, sliced into 3/4″ steaks
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed (makes it easier to rub them on the steaks)
  • Sea salt & pepper, to taste

Tangy Almond Butter Sauce

  • 1/2 cup canned full fat coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup almond butter
  • 2 tablespoons tamari (wheat-free soy sauce)
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 small cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Directions

Slice cabbage from top to bottom into 3/4" discs.

Preheat oven to 400F. Slice cabbage from top to bottom into 3/4″-thick steaks.

Rub smashed garlic clove on both sides of cabbage "steak"

Rub smashed garlic clove on both sides of cabbage “steak”

Sprinkle both sides of steak with sea salt and black pepper

Sprinkle both sides of steak with sea salt and black pepper. Roast in the oven for 25 minutes per side (total of 50 minutes, flipping steaks halfway through)

Steaks are done when they've browned around the edges and can be pierced in the center with a fork

Steaks are done when they’ve browned around the edges and can be pierced in the center with a fork.

Look how beautifully browned this is! Make sure to eat the outer edges. They are amazing!

Look how beautifully browned this is! Make sure to eat the crispy outer edges. They are amazing!

Eat them “as is” OR top with the Tangy Almond Butter Sauce (so worth it!)

Directions: To make the sauce, whisk dressing ingredients together in a bowl or mason jar and pour several spoonfuls on top of the cabbage steak. I found that the sauce “set” a little bit after I left it in the fridge overnight, but you can use it right away, too. It will just thicken up a bit overnight. Adjust seasonings to your tastes.

You may end up licking this stuff off your plate. It’s that good 🙂

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The almond butter sauce melting off the roasted cabbage steaks. SO good!

The almond butter sauce melting off the roasted cabbage steaks. SO good!

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Roasted Kabocha Squash & Cremini Mushrooms

Roasted Kabocha

I first tried kabocha (ka-BOTCH-a) squash last year when my husband and I were browsing through one of our favorite cookbooks – Clean Food. The recipe was for a stuffed kabocha squash, and it was heavenly!

I love squash that I don’t have to peel (since that can be a bit of a pain), and kabocha squash is one you can enjoy in its wholeness – skin and all!

Today’s post features another recipe from Terry Walters, author of the Clean Food cookbook and a fellow graduate of my health coaching training program. Her cookbooks focus on eating real, whole, seasonal food.

Kabocha Squash Collage

This recipe combines three of my favorite things – kabocha squash, mushrooms, and fresh fall herbs (especially sage!).

Kabocha squash, also known as a Japanese pumpkin, has an edible dark green skin covering a deep orange flesh and cooks up a bit sweeter than butternut squash. It’s one of my favorite squash, but it has a short season, so I try to take advantage of it while I can.

This dish also contains a couple of the best GBOMBS foods we can eat, including mushrooms and leeks. GBOMBS are the highest nutrient foods we can eat and are anti-cancer, anti-fat storage foods. Click here to read more about GBOMBS and how you can add more of them to your diet.

Roasted Kabocha

Ingredients

2 small or 1 large Kabocha squash
2 leeks*, sliced lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch strips (cut off the dark green top!)
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons coconut oil, melted OR extra virgin olive oil (I use coconut oil for high heat recipes, since it’s more heat stable)
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1 pound cremini mushrooms, wiped clean (leave the whole)
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
1 tablespoon fresh sage, minced

This squash tastes even better the second day, heated up on the stovetop in a bit more coconut oil, some black pepper, and a touch more balsamic. You may also find that you want to toss it in a little extra oil and vinegar when you take it out of the oven the first time to restore some of the moisture.

*I found that the leeks burned when I put them in right away, as the recipe suggests, so I would recommend putting them in after the first 10 minutes instead of at the very beginning of cooking. You could also try lowering the oven temperature to 400F to see if that makes a difference.

For the full recipe click here.*

Here are a few more recipes that feature this sweet & delicious squash!

  1. Stuffed Kabocha Squash 
  2. Kabocha Squash Ice Cream with Maple Roasted Pecans
  3. Roasted Kabocha Squash Bowl with Autumn Vegetables

Detoxifying Bok Choy Salad

Rachel Druckenmiller, health coach and local blogger

Rachel Druckenmiller, health coach and author of Rachel’s Nourishing Kitchen

As the weather warms up, I’m always looking for new ideas for lightrefreshing, and detoxifying dishes. When I saw the bok choy and red cabbage in my Hometown Harvest bag, I knew I had to find a creative way to use them!

Anything from the cabbage family (like the bok choy and red cabbage in this recipe) is a cancer-fighting superstar (AKA a GBOMBS food).

GBOMBS are a group of the most nutrient-dense, disease-fighting, health-promoting foods in the world, foods we should eat a lot of on a daily basis. Check out this post for the full details on GBOMBS and how you can benefit from eating them!

In her book, The  Beauty Detox Foods, nutritionist Kimberly Snyder points out tons of other health and beauty benefits of eating cabbage (bok choy and red cabbage both count!):

  • Anti-aging/great for your skin because it contains vitamins A, C and E
  • Helps to detoxify or purify the blood (which also contributes to clearer skin and reduced inflammation)
  • High in fiber so it “keeps things moving” 🙂
  • Good for the thyroid and other endocrine glands because of its iodine content

Click here to read about even more of the amazing healthy benefits of bok choy in particular.

Now that you’re sold on WHY eating these foods is a good idea, here’s a recipe to try that shows you HOW to use them!

Detoxifying Bok Choy Salad

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Salad Ingredients

  • 2 heads of bok choy, chopped into ½” pieces
  • 3 cups of thin-sliced red cabbage (we run ours through the food processor to shred it quickly and easily)
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Dressing

  • 6 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • ⅔ cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup tamari (wheat-free soy sauce)

Click here for the full recipe!

Indulgent Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Shake

Rachel Druckenmiller, health coach and local blogger

Rachel Druckenmiller, health coach and author of Rachel’s Nourishing Kitchen

Chocolate-covered strawberries…for breakfast? Why not!

When I was a little girl, there was a strawberry man who would ride a horse drawn cart around our neighborhood and shout, “Strawwwwberries! Strawwwwwwberries!” as he sold pints of fresh strawberries to us and our neighbors.

I couldn’t quite say such a complicated word at the time, so my dad tells me that I called them “strawbetties.” 🙂

Berries have always been my favorite fruit, so I try to take advantage of them for the limited time they’re in season each year, which happens to be right now for strawberries!

Mmmm strawberries :)

Mmmm strawberries 🙂

Not only do they taste delicious raw or cooked, but they’re also loaded with fiber and antioxidants, low in sugar, and are one of the 6 GBOMBS foods (anti-cancer/anti-fat storage!). Eat berries…lots of them!

Today’s recipe calls for frozen berries (makes the shake creamier), so you can either use fresh ones and throw in a few extra ice cubes OR cut the tops off of the fresh berries put them on a parchment paper lined container and freeze them yourself 🙂

I don’t know about you, but chocolate-covered strawberries are one of my favorite treats, and this recipe gives us a nourishing way to have our strawberries AND chocolate. Try this shake/smoothie for breakfast, a midday snack or as a dessert. It’s really yummy!

Cacao powder is one of the superfood ingredients in this recipe. Cocoa powder (such a slight difference in spelling!) is treated with heat, which destroys a lot of the health-boosting antioxidants of the cacao plant (where chocolate comes from!), so we use cacao powder instead. It’s a little more bitter, but it does the trick to create a chocolately taste! Or grate a locally made Chocotenango bar; Ismael literally crafts his chocolates in a walk-in refrigerator to preserve the antioxidants and quality without preservatives or heat processing.

To learn more about the difference between cacao powder and cocoa powder, click here.

Indulgent Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Shake

Chocolate-covered strawberry shake! I topped mine with some cacao nibs for a little crunch :)

Chocolate-covered strawberry shake! I topped mine with some cacao nibs for a little crunch 🙂

Ingredients

Click here for the full recipe from The Detoxinista!

Hometown Voices: Quick Kale Tahini Salad

Join the Ford family, long-time Hometown Harvest customers, as they blog about their adventures in local, almost vegan eating. See how this family of four manages a mainly plant-based diet despite busy schedules and caring for their two young boys.

kale salad

Filling, crunchy kale salad!

Hi Everyone!

It’s a been a busy Fall season so far: kids are back in school, busy home and work schedules, eating, breathing, etc.

I’ve meaning to write a new blog post for awhile, but never gotten around to it.

Since Mommy Ford and I had a day to ourselves (kids are at school and daycare, we had a opportunity to relax and prepare lunch, which consisted of leftover lentil soup our dear friend prepared for us last night…BTW, she used the Hometown Harvest Vegetable Broth we just had delivered. It was probably the best lentil soup I’ve ever had. I was already two bowls in when I knew I had to stop. Luckily, there was a huge pot of it left, so it’s frozen for now, but will be eaten in the next few days.

Where was I? Today’s lunch. So, leftover soup and Kale Tahini Salad.

curly kale

Curly kale is great for salads, while flatter Tuscan kale is better for baking into chips.

I really love Kale and Tahini and they go together really well. I didn’t want to do anything too fancy to it so I added in a few red and yellow peppers to give it some color. Then, I sprinkled a little sea salt, freshly ground pepper, and garlic powder to round out the taste.

Again, the true taste test is Mommy Ford. It turns out she loved the Kale Tahini Salad! The Tahini mellowed out the normal Kale taste, but left its crunchiness still intact.

So, if you’re searching for something to do with your Kale other than blending it, make a quick Kale Tahini Salad.

Kale Tahini Salad
Ingredients:
1 Bunch of Kale torn from the stem
1 Red Pepper

diced
1 Yellow Pepper diced
1/3 Cup of Tahini
1/4 Cup of Sesame Seeds
1 TSp of Garlic
1/2 TSp of Sea Salt
1/4 TSP of Freshly Ground Pepper

Recipe:
Place the torn-up Kale into a medium to large bowl. Toss in everything else! Pretty easy and healthy!

shredded kale

Shred the kale, and use the tougher ribs for stock later!

Hometown Voices: A new spin on Mac ‘N Cheese!

Join the Ford family, long-time Hometown Harvest customers, as they blog about their adventures in local, almost vegan eating. See how this family of four manages a mainly plant-based diet despite busy schedules and caring for their two young boys.

Cashew Mac & Cheese

A plant-based twist on a family favorite!

This morning, we received our weekly Hometown Harvest delivery.  I decided to whip up something quick and easy.  What’s easier than comfort food? Mac ‘N Cheese! Sticking with a plant-based focus, I decided to use the raw bag of cashews I bought (by mistake) the other day from the food co-op…I thought I grabbed roasted peanuts, but I didn’t look close enough.  What I am gonna do with a whole bag of cashews?  I don’t like cashews—just ask Momma Ford!  …Make cashew cheese sauce?  It’s a healthy alternative to the store-bought cheesy powder macaroni most of us have eaten at least once.

After a semi-successful trip to the park with the oldest son, we made it back home and decided to try making cashew macaroni and cheese as dinner for Momma and me.  After a brief search, I found a quick and simple recipe from The Rawtarian:

Cashew Cheese Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cashews
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (or slightly less)
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast

Directions:

Load all the ingredients into the blender and blend until smooth.  Add small amounts of water if you want a looser consistency. Boil macaroni or any other short noodles.

I quartered the always delicious heirloom cherry tomatoes from Hometown Harvest and cut up two basil leaves from the front yard.

I honestly wasn’t sure how it would turn out.  I mixed about two heaping tablespoons of the the sauce into the cooked noodle pot and gave it a taste.  After the first tasting, I went for about four or five more spoonfuls.  The ultimate taste test came from Momma Ford.  We had a winner!  You won’t be disappointed with this sauce.

Cashew Cheese Sauce lives on!

For future cashew macaroni and cheese dinners, you could probably add breadcrumbs on top and bake it for a more traditional texture.  Now that I know that this recipe actually tastes pretty good, I could probably make this for the holidays and people wouldn’t really know the difference. The possibilities are endless for expanding on this recipe.

Until the next post!

-Daddy Ford

Hometown Voices: Daddy Ford’s Inaugural Post!

Join the Ford family, long-time Hometown Harvest customers, as they blog about their adventures in local, almost vegan eating. See how this family of four manages a mainly plant-based diet despite busy schedules and caring for their two young boys.

Special delivery!

Special delivery!

It’s Daddy Ford (@NearlyVeganDC), half of the dynamic duo with Momma Ford aka @VanessaFord5!

Hometown Harvest has delivered delicious produce to our Capitol Hill doorstep for over three years.  Has it really been that long?  Anyway, we’ve loved all the organic and local produce delivered by Hometown Harvest.  With Momma Ford, our two young boys, and our 7-year old Shepherd, we have a busy household.  Our boys love the peaches…I mean REALLY love them!  So much so, that would be dinner.   So, a little about Daddy Ford…I just turned 34 (last week) and work a 9-to-5 in Information Technology in the DC area.   Over the past two years, I’ve made a serious effort to choose more healthy and local foods and have tailored our meals around these choices—whether it is seasonal and local produce, reducing the amount of less healthy foods our family eats, or just buying a ton of peaches, apples, or tomatoes for canning (peaches were canned a couple weeks back. Here we come Roma tomatoes!).

The little Fords can't resist peaches!

The little Fords can’t resist peaches!

In 2011, I decided to center my food choices on a whole foods, plant-based diet mainly for health reasons.  Over the past year, my wife gradually made the transition to a plant-based diet as well.  I think we can both say that we definitely appreciate the options that Hometown Harvest provides to us to keep us motivated!  We now sit down on Sunday evenings and go through the Hometown Harvest menu to see what’s available.  I could eat a ton of kale every week!  Also, when I have time, I really enjoy making fruit/veggie smoothies from our weekly delivery.  Who knew beets could taste so good in smoothie?

So about the meal I cooked tonight – a very simple mushroom stir fry.  After a long Friday evening, I decided to cook up something quick.  From our weekly delivery from Hometown Harvest, I chopped up mushrooms, onions, and green beans.  Then, I added in pre-shredded carrots and purple cabbage, and tossed in some garlic salt, ginger powder, and pepper.  I forgot to mention that this was cooked without any oil!

stir fry

Daddy Ford whips up a fresh vegetarian stir fry for dinner.

Stay tuned as we continue on our journey to bring you inspiring meals, recipes, and stories based around our experiences with Hometown Harvest, our great local food delivery service!