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Farm House Kitchen

Broccoli Mac N Cheese

Eatwell Farmhouse Kitchen  Serves 4 to 6

I love Mac N Cheese, it is one of my favorite dishes.  And like many people, I am sure, I sometimes add a veg, like broccoli, to make for a one dish and healthier meal.  

1 lb Elbow Macaroni, cooked per package instructions

4 TB Butter

4 TB Flour

2 cups Milk, warmed

2 cups Sharp Cheddar, grated, plus 1/2 cup or so, for topping

Salt and Pepper, to taste

2 cups Broccoli florets, lightly steamed

1/4 to 1/2 cup Breadcrumbs, for topping, optional

Save some of the cooking water either from your pasta or the broccoli to thin you sauce a bit.

Over medium heat, melt butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan.  Once foamy, add the flour.  Mix well, and cook until it just turns a bit golden, stirring often so it doesn’t burn.  Turn temp down to low and slowly add the warmed milk, 1/2 cup at a time, whisking in between.  Once it is well incorporated and there are no visible lumps, at the grated cheese.  If your sauce is really thick add a bit of the pasta cooking water or the broccoli cooking water to get it to the consistency you prefer.  Put the cooked macaroni into a casserole dish, then add the cheese sauce, mixing well.  Then gently fold in the lightly cooked broccoli florets. The total consistency should be quite creamy and not too thick.  Turn on your broiler.  Top the Mac n Cheese  with the remaining cheese and some breadcrumbs.  Pop under the broiler and cook 1 to 2 minutes until top is just getting a little crispy and serve!

Simple Greek Yogurt Herb Sauce

1 cup Greek Yogurt

Juice & Zest from 1/2 Lemon

1 to 2 TB Olive Oil, depending on how creamy you want it.

Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper, to taste

1/2 bunch Garlic Chives

1/2 bunch Parsley (and some basil if you still have some!)

Put everything into your blender and let it run until smooth.  Turn it off to push things down off the sides and let it run again.  If you have a regular blender, use a regular mouth mason jar, put the blender base on it and make your sauce in it.

Chili Sweet Potato Cubes

I made this for the breakfast this morning and it was so tasty and easy.  This makes enough for 2 to 3 people, depending on what else you are eating.  I think it would be a nice side dish to the Spaghetti Squash and Chickpeas.

2 cups Sweet Potato, peeled and chopped to about 1” cubes

2 TB Olive Oil

1/2 cup Water

1 tsp Chili Powder

Salt and Pepper to taste

In a heavy skillet, heat oil on medium to medium-high, then add cubed Sweet Potatoes.  Fry for about 3 minutes.  Season with chili powder and salt and pepper, mix well.  Have a lid ready, add water and cover.  Cook for about 3 minutes, then remove the lid and cook until water has evaporated and the sweet potato cubes are nice and tender.

Eggplant Parm

Farmhouse Recipe

Thursday night I had a serious craving for Eggplant Parmesan and Chicken Picatta, so I closed my computer, poured myself a glass of wine and got into the Zen of dinner.  It was soooooo good I made it again Friday night, have been enjoying the leftovers and honestly I could easily make it again and keep going.  I don’t normally like leftovers, or eating the same thing twice in a week, but this harkened back to my childhood and old style Italian restaurants when the sauce tasted like someone actually cooked it and it didn’t come out of can.  I honestly can’t imagine how an eggplant hater wouldn’t enjoy this dish, so if you are an eggplant hater maybe you might consider giving it a try.  Of course the real secret here is making your own sauce from the tomatoes in the share, but hopefully most of you are already doing that.  If you aren’t try Marcella Hazan’s recipe, it is THE BEST fresh sauce ever.  I am including a version from Food52 so you have it.

2 lb Tomatoes

5 TB Butter

1 medium Onion, peeled and cut in half not chopped or diced

Salt to taste **For my Eggplant Parm I used Eatwell Rosemary Salt

First wash your tomatoes, cut the stem end off and quickly blanch in boiling water.  Allow to cool.  When you can handle them remove the skin.  You can coarsely chop or cut in half.  Put the tomatoes into a heavy bottom sauce pan, add the butter, onion and salt and cook uncovered at a very slow, but steady simmer for about 45 minutes, or until it is thickened to your liking and the fat floats free from the tomato.  Stir from time to time, mashing up any large pieces of tomato with the back of a wooden spoon.  Taste and correct for salt.  This can cook on the stove while you are prepping the eggplant.

For the Eggplant:

1 Eggplant, sliced to about 1 1/2” thickness

Flour for dredging

2 Eggs, well beaten

About 2 cups Breadcrumbs

Salt and Pepper

Grated Parmesan

Grated Mozzarella

Basil and Parsely, finely chopped

Oil for frying

Preheat oven to 375 F. Heat a large heavy skillet with a good amount of oil, at least 1/2” deep, to medium high.  Coat both sides of the eggplant in the flour, then dip into the egg.  I added about 3 TB of Parmesan to the breadcrumbs, along with some salt and pepper, and mixed it well.  After the egg dip, coat the eggplant with the breadcrumbs.  Carefully put the eggplant in the hot oil.  I use tongs and try not to splatter and burn myself too many times. Fill your pan, but don’t over crowd, you want working room.  Once golden brown, gently turn over and cook the other side.  You don’t want it to brown too quickly because the eggplant needs time to cook through, so if you find your eggplant is browning really fast lower your temp a bit.  I used a smaller baking dish which is a little deeper, it is about a 9 X 11.  I spooned in enough sauce to cover the bottom, then sprinkled on a little bit of our Rosemary Salt (I hadn’t salted my sauce).  Then I put down one layer of fried eggplant, sprinkled over Paremesan and Mozzarella.  Repeat it all with a seance layer of everything, with a final light topping of sauce. Pop it into the oven and bake until bubbling, about 30 minutes.  If you want you can add another layer of Mozzarella and Parmesan, turn the oven off and let it sit in there until the cheese melts.  When serving sprinkle on a little chopped Basil and Parsley.

Eggplant Roasted Tomato Stack


Recipe by the Farmhouse Kitchen

For the Eggplant:

1 1/4 lb Eggplant, cut into 1/3” rounds

1 cup Almond Meal (or use Panko or regular breadcrumbs)

Salt and Pepper

2 Eggs, beaten

Oil for frying

I pre-salt the eggplant slices and let them sit for at least 10 minutes to draw out some of the moisture.  Then rinse and dry.  Dip into the beaten egg, then into the almond meal.  Fry on medium heat until a dark golden then carefully flip to the other side and fry until done.  Put finished eggplant slices on a cooling rack with a tray underneath to catch oil drips.


For the Tomatoes:

Preheat the oven to 425 F.  Cut the butt end of the tomato off and discard.  Cut the tomato into  2 thick slices, they should be no less than 1/2”.  Put onto a roasting sheet and pop into the oven for 20 minutes.


To make the Stacks

Wash some Basil Leaves

Shred some Mozzarella

Grate some Parmesan

Put one prepared Eggplant slice on a baking sheet, top with one or two basil leaves.  Place one or two slices of roasted tomato depending on how wide the eggplant is. You want to have nice amount of tomato coverage.  Carefully put on 1 to 2 TB of grated Mozzarella, then top with grated Parmesan.  Bake at 375 for 8 minutes, until cheese melts


Freezing Excess Veggies

Walking the farm it is quite obvious that we are quickly approaching Summer. Zucchini, tomatoes, eggplants, peppers will all be ready soon, zucchini is already coming in. As we have collards and chard in this week’s box I strongly encourage you to wash, chop and sauté, then stick it into a ziplock and freeze it for later in the summer. 

If you put it in the freezer flat, do not over fill the bag, it is actually pretty easy to break it into bits, and this way you can make up a soup and add a little bit of greens. Of course you can also put it into small bags and portion it out. Either way, come August, most of us would be happy to have some prepared greens int he freezer. You could even goes so far as to include parsley and garlic and a little bit of diced carrot and make an almost complete soup or stew base.  So often I find delicious recipes for tomatoes that call for some kind of green to go with it, but of course they are out of season for us here at that time.  

Parsley added to Pesto keeps it a much brighter green. For 1 cup of Basil add 1/4 cup of Parsley. Pesto can be frozen in ice cube trays and then popped into freezer bags for easy storage.  It is important to remember that when we choose to eat seasonally part of what we do is “put things up” as my Grandma used to say.  In our modern world, we have many easy options. Pesto takes mere minutes with a food processor (of course if you are a purest you will only make it in a mortar and pestle), dehydrators, freezers, canners, some people even invest in freeze driers.  I stick more to the basics, I use a giant pot and boiling water for canning, I air and oven dry herbs, and freeze lots of things. The past few weeks I have really taken advantage of the frozen greens we pre-cooked when loads of stuff came back from the market. It saved me loads of time when cooking for 25 people over the lavender weekend. Not preparing an entire meal, but rather prepping food gives you a lot of flexibility once you are at your destination.  Take advantage of what is in your box and bri

Lizzie’s Fennel Frond Ice Tea


Over the weekend, one of my favorite treats was Lizzie’s Fennel Frond Iced Tea. Might seem crazy with all the food we had, but when I cook a lot I eat a little, but I get so thirsty.  This is so refreshing, and most certainly good for digestion.  Take about 1/3 of your fronds and put into a good sized iced tea container, about 1/2 gallon size, or 1/2 gallon mason jar.  Boil water and pour enough to cover the fronds.  Make sure you are using a container that can handle the  heat, if not wait a couple of minutes for it to cool just slightly, and pour in slowly bit by bit.  If you want it sweetened add 1 TB Honey while it is hot.  Allow to cool, remove fronds then fill with ice. 

Raclette For Dinner

Ellie gave me an early birthday present, a Raclette maker. If you are not familiar with this, it is an electric grill top that sits on the table.  It also has little trays that go underneath the heating elements. The grill top is where you cook vegetables and meats, we cooked slices of bacon the other night, but you can do sausage or chicken, really whatever you like.  The little trays are where you melt your Raclette cheese, we used Gruyere since we didn’t have any Raclette available.  This is typically enjoyed on boiled potatoes.  Now I realize you all aren’t going to rush out to buy a Raclette machine, but you can do much the same thing in the oven, it just isn’t as much fun:). So for this week you could roast up wedges of cabbage, that you toss in a bit of good olive oil and maybe some finely minced spring garlic.  You could include halved or quartered turnips on the tray, also tossed with a bit of olive oil.  Don’t forget to add a little salt and pepper, the Eatwell Farm Rosemary Salt is great for roasted veg.  Gently boil your well washed potatoes.  When they are cooked to tender drain very well, then put them onto a roasting pan, cover with a good melting cheese and put under the broiler for a quick minute or two, just until the cheese is melted.  Make a fresh green salad for the side, and a little meat if you want, or skip it for a meatless meal. It won’t be as fun as having your family sitting around the table with your Raclette centerpiece, but it will be simple and delicious!


A Different Way Of Looking at the Farm


When Nigel and I would walk the farm, we saw everything from very different perspectives. He saw crops and yields, I saw dishes and dinner. I was reminded of this as I was walking back to the house and passed a field of leeks and fennel.  My first reaction was Oh, I love roasting fennel and leeks together, yum! I am sure Nigel’s would have been, looks like we are getting to the end with these crops. Fennel is beginning to bloom, leeks are looking a little weak. I wonder if I will ever become a farmer first, cook/lover of food second? I doubt it.

Citrus Salad

This is another suggestion from one of our Slack members.  JB’s version used Pomelo, actually this is hubby’s recipe, but JB posted!  It was also made with arugula but I would suggest spinach since that is what is in the box this week.  


Grapefruit sections, cut into bite size pieces

Slivered Fennel

Spinach, well washed

A bit of Orange for some sweetness (maybe use some Mandarins?)


Olive Oil

Red Wine Vinegar

Salt and Pepper