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Tag Archives: veggies

  • Zucchini Eggplant Casserole


    vegetable side dishesby Xiomara Meeks - Are you stuck in a rut?  While I'm a big fan of zucchini and eggplant, it has been a while since I've cooked either one at home.

    Zucchini seems easier to cook than eggplant to me.  Or at least, I've had better luck adding zucchini to an oriental inspired dish than cooking eggplant.  Although I prefer eggplant to zucchini, it just seems like such a big hassle sometimes.

    The other day I received this picture from a friend.  It made me realized I've been slacking on my vegetable eating. Sure, at home we eat avocados and tomatoes almost daily.  But this mixture of colorful veggies just made me want to try some new veggie recipes at home.

     

     Easy Zucchini Eggplant Casserole

    Who has time to prep, chop and bake?  I know we are all short on time these days.  At least that's how I feel when I get home after leaving the market and picking up the girls at daycare.  It's like entering my second job.  ;)  So, with that in mind, I promise this dish is quick, tasty and makes for great leftovers!  The beauty of this dish is that once is in the oven, you'll have time for other stuff.

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  • Roasted Okra

    Okra is one of those veggies people either love or despise.  Those who love it, can't get enough and those who despise it complain about it's slimy taste.  While I occasionally enjoy some fried okra with ranch dressing, it may not be the healthiest combination.  Having fresh locally grown okra brought to the market daily, made me realize we hadn't had it at home yet.  While my girls may not eat everything I put on their plate, I'm always encouraging them to try new things.

    Roasted Okra
    Recipe Type: Vegetable
    Author: Xiomara Meeks
    Prep time:
    Cook time:
    Total time:
    Serves: 4
    Enjoy crisp, flavorful, fresh from the farm Roasted Okra in a few simple steps!
    Ingredients
    • 1 pound okra
    • 2 tbsp olive oil
    • salt and pepper to taste
    Instructions
    1. Preheat oven to 450. Wash the okra through running water and use a paper towel
    2. to dry it. Line a baking sheet with the okra and drizzle the olive oil over it. Season it with salt and pepper to taste.
    3. Roast it in the oven for 15 minutes. Make sure to shake the baking sheet half way through. Allow a few minutes to cool before eating.

     

    Growing Tips

    Okra is very easy to grow, especially with Florida's hot  weather.  Some relatives include cotton, hollyhock and hibiscus.  If you plan to grow it in your garden, make sure you have well-drained soils in full sun.  It prefers slightly acidic to slightly alkaline soils (pH 6.5-7.5).  Okra can be grown  by direct sowing or by setting transplants.  Make sure you soak the seeds overnight before sowing.

    homegrown okra

    Selecting Okra

    When selecting Okra make sure it has a beautiful shade of green.  Preferably, you should pick them when they are about the size of a small finger or your "pinkie".  The smaller they are, the less "slimy" they tend to be.  Also, the smaller the seeds are.

    Additional Recipes

     

    What are some of your favorite ways to prepare it?

  • Roasted Beets for Easter

    We hope you had a great Easter weekend with your family and friends.  We gathered at Grandma Parke's house today to celebrate with the family.  One thing I always look forward to is Grandma Parke's decorations.  Her decorations are always great.  Every table had a centerpiece with some "Easter grass" in different colors with lambs, birds or eggs.  Too cute.

     

     

    Easter decorations Easter Centerpieces

    On Easter, everyone brings a dish to share.  This year, I brought roasted beets with yellow peppers and strawberry onions.  It's super easy and I love the color combination.  To make this dish,  just cut up the beets, yellow peppers and onions in cubes, then drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.  Season with salt to taste, and broil in the oven for about 20-30 minutes.  I turn them half way through.  If you try the beets, and they taste like dirt, then they are not done.  Cook them for a bit longer until they taste sweet.  That's how you know they are done.  ;)

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    My plate consisted of ham, smoked pork (made by Matt), broccoli salad, squash casserole, broccoli casserole, and my roasted beet dish.  Can you tell I love veggies?

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    While everyone was eating, Piper decided the pool needed some cleaning.

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    And Hayden was ready to help!

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    Jordan brought a delicious strawberry pizza made with a shortbread cookie crust.  It was delicious.  After dessert, it was time for some Egg Hunting!033113_7 033113_8 033113_9 033113_10

     

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    Happy Easter from our family to yours!

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