Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A Tasty Way To Cook Your Veggies

Almost every town has a Farmer's Market.  Princeton is no exception.  Every Wednesday we have one set up at the location of our Saturday Flea Market.  This flea market has a lot of vendors selling produce, bakery and plants.


We hadn't gone to the Farm to Fork Farmer's Market yet, so last Wednesday we went.  Whoa!  We were used to the Farmer's Market we used to see in Madison, WI.  That market took up many city blocks and sold anything and everything you could imagine.  It is the largest in the state.  Poor Princeton Wisconsin has four tables.  Hopefully it will grow over time and offer more things.  One of the vendors sold Certified Organic produce.  We purchased red potatoes, green beans, a yellow summer squash and a small zucchini.  We also bought a tomato.  It isn't tomato time so I don't know how it was grown. Maybe they grew it in a greenhouse. Wherever it came from, it did taste like a fresh home grown tomato.

This story brings me to my Tuesday recipe.  I have a tendency to overbuy in situations such as this, and then let some of it go bad.  I didn't want that to happen so I used almost everything for dinner.  I used a recipe from the Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond, but I added a little of my own touches.  The recipe was for green beans cooked in bacon grease.  We always have bacon grease.  Whenever we buy bacon, my husband cooks the whole pound at the same time.  He puts it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator.  Then when we want bacon for a salad, a sandwich or with eggs, the bacon can be heated in the microwave for 45 seconds.  We put the grease in a covered dish and keep it in the refrigerator.  We use it for frying once in a while.  A nutritional comparison between a tablespoon of bacon grease, butter and canola oil is kind of surprising. The grease has slightly less cholesterol than the butter, and only 2 more milligrams of saturated fat.  It has the same number of calories as the oil, but a lot more sodium.

Our dinner with red potatoes, tomatoes, meat loaf & vegetables.

Farmer's Market Vegetables

1 pound fresh green beans, cut in bite sized pieces
1 sliced summer yellow squash
1 small sliced zucchini
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves, garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons bacon grease or butter (bacon grease adds good flavor)
1 cup chicken broth
3/4 teaspoon salt
Ground black pepper

Prepare the green beans, squash or any other fresh vegetables that you like.  Yellow beans would be good in this recipe.

Melt bacon grease in a skillet.  Add the garlic and onion and cook for a couple minutes.  Add the green beans and any other vegetables you are using.  Cook a couple more minutes and add the chicken broth.  Turn the heat to low and cover leaving just a little space to let steam escape.  Cook until the liquid evaporates and the beans are softened.  It could take 20-30 minutes.  Watch it because as the liquid cooks away, the vegetables start to caramelize.  Then it's ready to serve.

Caramelized vegetables ready to eat.

If you are interested, this is my husband's meat loaf recipe.


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