SIDE DISHES

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Cat­e­gory: Side Dish

Plac­er­Grown ingre­di­ents used: Cucum­bers and Onions

Ingre­di­ents:

  • 4 lg. cucum­bers — sliced
  • 2 med. onions — thinly sliced
  • 3 tbsp. minced fresh dill
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp. salt

Instruc­tions:
Pro­ce­dure: In a bowl, com­bine cucum­bers, onions and dill. In a saucepan, com­bine sugar, vine­gar, water and salt; bring to a boil. Pour over cucum­ber mix­ture. Cover and chill for 3 hours or overnight. Yield: 6 Servings

Lacto-fermented vegetables are pickled in a simple brine of water, salt, and sometimes whey, plus spices as you like — no vinegar.

Recipe by Karen Killebrew, adapted from Frog Bottom Farm
(1 pint – doubles easily)

Ingredients:
as many okra (washed and stems cut off) as will fit in a pint jar
1-2 cloves garlic, smashed with the broad side of a chef’s knife and peeled
½ tablespoon sea salt or pickling salt (any salt without anti-caking agents)
2 tablespoons whey
½ cup + water
any spices or seasonings you like – we like red pepper flakes, coriander, cumin, garlic, and mustard seed

Instructions:
Wash the okra and stuff it, along with the garlic, into your pint jar. Pack it in there really tight; you don’t want any pieces to float above the brine when you add it. Make sure there’s about an inch of headroom between the top of the okra and the top of the jar.
Combine the rest of the ingredients and pour over the okra. Gently turn the jar back and forth during the first day or so of fermenting, to help the salt dissolve.)
Add a bit more water if necessary to cover the okra completely; lacto-fermentation is an anaerobic process, and if any vegetables are exposed above the brine, you risk either mold or mushy vegetables.
Cover and keep at room temperature for 3-4 days, until bubbles begin to form and the okra is as sour as you like it. Taste it after 2 days; if you like how it tastes, put it in the fridge. If you want it to be more sour, give it another day or two before putting it in the fridge. Lasts several months.

Serves 6; recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-4 pounds sweet potatoes
-2 cups heavy cream or half and half
-1 stick unsalted butter
-zest of 4 meyer lemons
-2 vanilla beans
-salt and pepper, to taste

Peel the sweet potatoes and cut unto large chunks. Place in a pot and cover with salted water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low. Cook until potatoes just begin to fall apart and are very soft, about 15-20 minutes.

While the sweet potatoes are cooking, heat the cream and butter in a small pot over low heat, just until butter is melted. Add the meyer lemon zest. Cut the vanilla beans in half lengthwise and scrape out the vanilla pulp. Add the pulp to the cream and save the pods for another use. Set cream mixture aside until potatoes are cooked.

Drain the sweet potatoes and discard the cooking water. Return the cooked potatoes to the pot and heat over low flame for a minute to remove any excess moisture. Using a potato masher, mash in the cream-lemon-vanilla mixture. Add the liquid until sweet potatoes are at the consistency you prefer – less liquid for starchier potatoes and more for creamier. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve immediately! This dish would pair well with a Placer County chardonnay or viognier wine.

Serves 6 – recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-2 medium winter squash, such as acorn, kabocha or butternut
-3 Tbsp. local honey
-4 Tbsp. salted or unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
-8 sprigs fresh thyme
-salt and pepper, to taste
-8 slices bacon, cooked to your liking

Preheat oven to 425. Carefully cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Lay out the squash on a rimmed baking sheet or large glass baking dish, cut side up. Drizzle evenly with the honey and butter pieces and season to taste with salt and pepper. Place a sprig of thyme on each piece of squash.

Add a few tablespoons of water to the bottom of the baking dish, cover with foil and bake until squash is tender, 30-40 minutes. Remove foil and allow to caramelize for another 5 minutes. Add the cooked bacon slices just to warm and serve immediately!

Recipe by Courtney McDonald
Makes 1 quart jar

Ingredients:
-5 Meyer lemons
-1 mandarin
-1/3 cup kosher salt
-2 whole star anise
-1 cinnamon stick
-2/3 cup fresh Meyer lemon juice (from about 5 lemons)

Scrub lemons and mandarin and dry well. Quarter lemons and mandarin lengthwise, leaving 1/2 inch at bottom intact. Toss fruit with salt and spices and transfer to a sterile quart-sized mason jar. Use a wooden spoon to press lemons to fit. Add lemon juice and any remaining salt. Seal jar tightly and shake to combine. Let stand at room temperature for 3 days, shaking jar each day. Transfer to refrigerator for 3 weeks until rinds are soft. Rinse before using the rind, and pulp can be used in salad dressings and marinades.

Serves 6; Recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-1 large head cabbage – any variety
-2 Tbsp. Tamari soy sauce
-1/2 tsp. toasted sesame oil (optional)
-2 tsp. toasted sesame seeds
-chili oil, to taste (optional)

Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Remove outer leaves from the cabbage and trim the stem end. Cut the cabbage into large wedges – 8-12 pieces depending on the size of the cabbage. Add the cabbage wedges to the boiling water and cook until just tender – about 2 minutes. Drain cabbage and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Toss the hot cabbage with the tamari, sesame oil, sesame seeds and chili oil, if using. Serve immediately as a side dish.

Serves 6 – recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-2 medium winter squash, such as acorn, kabocha or butternut
-3 Tbsp. local honey
-4 Tbsp. salted or unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
-8 sprigs fresh thyme
-salt and pepper, to taste
-8 slices bacon, cooked to your liking

Preheat oven to 425. Carefully cut the squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds. Lay out the squash on a rimmed baking sheet or large glass baking dish, cut side up. Drizzle evenly with the honey and butter pieces and season to taste with salt and pepper. Place a sprig of thyme on each piece of squash.

Add a few tablespoons of water to the bottom of the baking dish, cover with foil and bake until squash is tender, 30-40 minutes. Remove foil and allow to caramelize for another 5 minutes. Add the cooked bacon slices just to warm and serve immediately!

Recipe by Courtney McDonald
Serves 6

Ingredients:
-3 Tbsp. olive oil
-2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
-1 bunch green onion
or ½ red onion, thinly sliced
-1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
-1 Tbsp minced fresh turmeric,or ½ tsp dried turmeric (optional)
-1 head green or Savoy cabbage,thinly sliced
-2 green apples, thinly sliced
-4 mandarins, segmented
-salt and pepper, to taste

In a large skillet or wok, heat the olive oil. Add the garlic, onion, ginger and turmeric, if using. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until onion is soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Increase the heat to high and add the sliced cabbage and apple, season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing or stirring, until cabbage has softened slightly – another 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat, adjust seasoning if necessary, and gently toss in the mandarin segments. Serve immediately.

Serves 6; Recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-2 pounds medium-sized beets, any color
-3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
-1 Tbsp. Kosher salt
-4 cloves garlic, smashed
-6 sprigs fresh thyme
-2 tsp. lemon or meyer lemon juice
-1 ½ Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
-salt and freshly-ground black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Trim the tops and tails from the beets and wash well. In a medium bowl, toss the beets with the 3 Tbsp. olive oil, 1 Tbsp. Kosher salt, garlic and thyme. Add 2 Tbsp. water. Line a rimmed cookie sheet with foil. Spread the beets onto the cookie sheet and place another sheet of foil on top. Crimp the foil edges together to create a sealed pocket. Roast the beets in the hot oven until tender, 45 minutes-1 hour (beets should pierce easily with a paring knife). Remove from oven and set aside to cool slightly. While beets are still warm, peel by scraping the skin off with a paring knife. The
skin should come off easily. Quarter the roasted beets and place in a medium mixing bowl. Toss with the lemon juice and remaining olive oil, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve cold, hot or warm.

Serves 6; Recipe by Courtney McDonald

Ingredients:
-3 bunches kale-any variety
-3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
-3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
-1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
-salt, to taste

Tear the kale leaves from the stems. Cut kale leaves in to 1 inch ribbons and wash thoroughly in cold water. Drain.

Place the olive oil, garlic and chili in a large skillet. Heat over medium flame, stirring occasionally, until the garlic just begins to brown – be careful not to burn! As soon as garlic begins to brown, quickly add the wet kale. Stand back as the pan may splatter a bit. Cook the kale, stirring occasionally, until it is wilted and slightly tender – about 5 minutes. If the pan becomes dry, add a few teaspoons of water.

Season to taste with salt and serve immediately.

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