Archive for LOMB Staff

Quick Tomato & Basil Sauce

Tomatoes, Peppers, Zucchini and Basil all love the sun and are available at the Farmer’s Market in August.  A quick sauce can be created using the fresh ingredients.  It is also an easy recipe.

One make-ahead step is roasting the bell peppers and storing in the refrigerator.  Buy a few more than you would eat in one meal and roast them on the grill until they are charred on all sides.  Cover them as they cool and the skin can easily be removed.  Chop into small squares and use throughout the week.

The other ingredients can be cooked at the same time as boiling water for pasta.  Lunch will be ready in 20 minutes if you are using the pre-roasted red bell peppers.  Enjoy.

1 Small Onion, diced

2 Cloves of Garlic, diced

1 Small Zucchini (or half of a larger one), diced

1 Roasted Red Bell Pepper, diced

2 Tomatoes, diced

1 Bunch of Swiss Chard, chiffonade or slice into strips

Fresh Oregano

Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes

Kosher Salt

Fresh Ground Black Pepper

Olive Oil

1.5 Cups of Penne Pasta (or Two Handfuls)

1 Bunch of Basil, chiffonade or slice into strips

Wash and dice all of the vegetables on a cutting board to prepare for cooking the dish.  Heat a saute pan to medium heat and drizzle olive oil in the bottom.  Add the onion, garlic, pinch of kosher salt and about three grinds of black pepper for about three minutes of cooking time.  This will help them soften for your sauce.

Start the pasta water.  Cook the pasta according to instructions with a little salt added with the shells.  It typically takes 10 minutes.  Add the swiss chard to the same water with five minutes left on the timer.

Add the remaining vegetable ingredients, oregano and red pepper.  Cook for about 10 minutes.  Remove the pasta and greens from the boiling water and add to the saute pan.  It is good to have a little pasta water to give the sauce texture.  Cook all ingredients for a few more minutes.  Top with basil and parmesan cheese.

Still room in Saturday’s class

Our Weds. class is sold out, but there is still room right now in the Sat. class. Marc Howard will be making an Heirloom Tomato Caprese tart (fresh pesto, mozzarella and tomatoes on a quick and easy handmade pie crust) and lamb kebabs from Talus Ranch. Reserve your space online or call 471-7780. Only $10, but lots of great info and inspiration. Come with a friend!

Cooking Beyond Recipes

Cooking Beyond Recipes

From Nadine

In grad school, I shared an apartment with two aspiring librarians. Rosemary often cooked for us and would go to the store to buy dried oregano if a recipe called for ¼ teaspoon and we didn’t have it on the shelf. One lovely Midwestern morning, I went to the farmer’s market and came home with zucchini, onion, eggplant, bell pepper and tomato, chopped them up and stewed them into ratatouille. At dinner, Cathy expressed her appreciation and asked for the recipe. With disapproval in her voice, Rosemary responded, “There wasn’t one. I watched her make it.” I tell this story often, because it says so much about different approaches to cooking.

When I was married, my husband would sometimes ask that I make a particular meal again—and of course I couldn’t reproduce exactly whatever I’d improvised two weeks ago. So there are some advantages to the “go buy the ¼ teaspoon of oregano” school of thought.

I treat recipes as references, sources of ideas and inspiration. I follow recipes more closely when I bake, since the chemistry of baking requires certain proportions of key ingredients. I often read several recipes to make something new or outside my usual repertory. (Checking various cookbooks recently, I discovered that my grandmother’s recipe for short cake is classic.) Occasionally I will draft a recipe from my sources, note what I actually do and keep that recipe so I can reproduce it if I like the result. A friend once gifted me with some cookbooks as she cleaned out her library, and I still enjoy reading the notes she made as she modified recipes.

Organic fruit on sale this week

Enjoy the fruits of the season!

Natural Grocers has more organic fruit on sale this week. They have organic nectarines and organic peaches for 4 lbs/$5. They have organic watermelon with seeds for 39 cents per pound and organic plums for $1.19 per pound.  Enjoy the summer produce!

Organic Peach Sale This Week

Sweet, juicy peaches

Natural Grocers has organic peaches 4 pounds for $5 this week. Peaches are at the top of  the “Dirty Dozen,” so this is a great time to preserve them or make them into a favorite dessert or other dish.

Thanks, Volunteers!

We had a great group of people at our Volunteer Meeting yesterday. It’s always a treat hearing volunteers’ stories and why they’re drawn to Local Organic Meals on a Budget. Listening to what everyone is passionate about in their lives and what they’re working towards, individually and collectively, is really inspiring. Thanks to ALL our volunteers who make this project happen and especially to the amazing group who showed up and contributed their ideas and energy Wednesday night!

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Ideas & Suggestions for Classes

Michelle Roetzer, Guest Chef in June

Michelle Roetzer, Guest Chef in June

Our June classes were sold out and very well-received. Thanks to all of you who attended and made our debut a success!

Comments from attendees included:

  • “Wow! Really enjoyable!”
  • “Great teacher and stories!”
  • “Fun and informative!
  • “Michelle was excellent! She packed a lot of info into a very entertaining session!”
  • “Fabulous and fun! Very informative!”

Our thanks to Michelle Roetzer, lead instructor of the Culinary Arts Program at Santa Fe Community College for outstanding and entertaining classes!

Read tips & find sales!

Read tips & find sales here

Read tips & find sales here

Feel free to share your money and time saving tips on shopping for local, organic foods and cooking inexpensive meals. We’ll also be posting information on produce and food items on sale locally, so let us know if you see any deals!

Do you have a delicious recipe?

Butter Lettuce Spring Salad

Butter Lettuce Spring Salad

Lots of us have favorite recipes that we fall back on again and again because they’re fast, easy and delicious. What’s yours? Add a recipe to our mix and you’ll be put into a monthly drawing for a free LOMB cooking class! Just be sure to include clear directions, measurements and local and organic ingredients. Let the creative cooking begin!