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The Beauty of Winter Veggies

 

Radicchio from Ayers Creek Farm (at the Hillsdale Market every other Sunday throughout the winter)

 

I recently wrote a gushing post about my love of winter veggies for Culinate. But one post is not enough. I haven’t been to the Hillsdale Farmers Market–one of two year-round markets in the Portland area–for 10 days or so. And I missed the other one, which is right in my neighborhood–the People’s Coop Farmers Market–last week. Both are community treasures. And I will head over to the People’s one this afternoon. My fridge, however, is still packed with baseball bat-sized leeks, dense winter squashes, beets, celery root (celeriac), and radicchio  from my last trip to Hillsdale. No matter what the weather the farmers and other  vendors are there with such a variety of produce that I am still sometimes taken aback at our luck of living in this climate. Though I try to grow kale and some greens throughout the winter with little success, it’s actually only partly the climate and just as much the skill, creativity and determination of our regional farmers that enables these beautiful crops to thrive in our wet, temperate climate.

Winter time cooking is often associated with slow-cooked soups and stews, braised meats and the like. However, it’s also possible to throw together fresh, hearty salads this time of year and they are a nice counterpoint to the richer, sweeter flavors of those stews and roasts.

 

Radicchio, Chickpea, and Chopped Egg Salad

 

Yesterday for lunch (and for my husband’s lunch he took to work), I tossed some of this beautiful radicchio with chopped hard-boiled egg, capers, chickpeas (that I had previously cooked and frozen for just such meals) and a lively dressing of garlic, Dijon, olive oil, red wine vinegar and salt and pepper. It was robust, fresh and absolutely delicious.

Happy Cooking and Eating!

Katherine

P.S. My February classes are starting to fill so if you’re interested in the Favorites one or the Rice & Beans from around the World one, sign up online or let me know you’d like a spot. I’ve also just scheduled some lunch-time classes that are going to be loads of fun and shorter and cheaper but with a full meal as usual so check those out as well.

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5 Comments Post a comment
  1. This salad looks and sounds wonderful! I may try to throw this together sometime this week, yum!

    January 19, 2011
  2. Carol Boutard #

    Now, I know how to transform the chicory in my fridge into a delicious lunch. I had never thought of adding egg, capers and chickpeas. Chicory can really use the addition of other textures and flavors.

    You are a gem, Katherine.

    January 20, 2011
  3. Gail #

    Will be making this, pronto. (Recall your earlier post about how one does a weeknight dinner without eating at 10 p.m.? Well, this is it! Perfection.)

    January 20, 2011
  4. Katherine, Iam very much enthused by your receipts – mainly the winter veggie salad (yummy!) but also the good bet to freeze your own bouillon are convincing and I also love the sweets…I forwarded your website to friends with kids and busy folks – they’re eager to learn more!
    And hope, the sad days are over, meanwhile…

    January 22, 2011

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