Green Bean and Purple Potato Salad

I love stopping by the Black Cat Farmstand at the Boulder Farmers’ Market on Saturday mornings to see what Chef/Farmer Eric Skokan is harvesting. I’ve been getting into the habit of letting him suggest I try something, and then I ask him how I’m going to prepare it. He almost effortlessly rattles off a recipe to highlight something seasonal, and I rush home inspired to try it. This past week I bought his first harvest of green beans. They were a light green color, which leads me to believe they have some special name other than “green beans,” but for the purpose of this post, they were Black Cat Farm Green Beans. Chef Skokan suggested I blanch them, cool them off, and add them to a potato saldad in a mustard vinaigrette.  So, that’s exactly what I did. I bought a pound of local purple potatoes from the market that day and boiled them after blanching 2 big handfulls of the beans. When they were cool, I coarsely chopped them, mixed them with the green beans, and tossed them in a maple mustard vinaigrette. I let this chill in the fridge for a few hours before serving with turkey burgers and corn on the cob. A perfect summer meal. For a simple Maple Mustard Vinaigrette, whisk together:

  •  2 TB Grade B Pure Vermont Maple Syrup
  • 2 TB Dijon Mustard
  • 1/4 cup Walnut Oil
  • 1 TB Apple Cider Vinegar
  • a splash of soy sauce

Fall Harvest Veggie Soup

Fruits and veggies just taste better when they’re fresh, local, organic, and seasonal. That is the bottom line. I can pretty much guarantee that this soup would not have been so incredibly delicious had I purchased the ingredients at the store… especially in the middle of January.
But… that day will come. Right now, though, I will be savoring every last bite of my Fall Harvest Veggie Soup.

It was quite easy- Into a large stock pot went the following ingredients in the following order, allowing a little time in between each ingredient to bring the broth back to a boil:
  • 1 quart water (bring to a boil)
  • 2 yellow onions, chopped
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 4 cups grilled, blended tomato puree
  • 4 carrots, quartered and chopped
  • 1 zucchini, sliced into pieces approximately the same size as the potatoes
  • 1 pound red fingerling potatoes, cubed
  • 1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms from Hazel Dell
  • 2 green peppers, chopped
After this cooked for 45 minutes or so, I added a couple teaspoons of sea salt and some Smoked Spanish Sweet Paprika that I bought from Savory Spice Shop.
I served it with some bread and mozzarella cheese. It was really, really good soup. I’m glad I have some leftovers.

Edamame Salad

Edamame. It’s not just a fun word to say… it’s fun to eat. I got a big bag of edamame in my CSA share from Ollin Farms and was eager to eat the little green beans. I hadn’t had edamame since they were in season last summer, which seems like a long time ago now!
First, I brought a large pot of water to a boil. Then, I added my edamame (maybe a pound?) in their shells and let them boil with a pinch of sea salt for 3-4 minutes. I fished them out of the water and rinsed them in cold water to stop them from cooking.
Now comes the fun part: shelling them. Ask for help here if you want to eat these within a reasonable amount of time.

I dressed mine with sea salt, pepper, a drizzle of olive oil, and 3 cloves of garlic that I grilled, let cool, and coarsely chopped. Yum. The grilled garlic flavor really compliments the buttery flavor and texture of edamame. I’m definitely going to make this dish again.

Fava Bean Spread

I finally did it. I bought fava beans at the market. I’ve been in Boulder for 5 years, which means I’ve been going to the market for five years, and every summer those big, thick fava beans frightened me. I don’t know why. They are now a new favorite of mine.

I did some research on these beans because I brought some home and had no idea what to do with them. It turns out that they are a very old bean that had been a staple in Europe way back in the day. Europeans brought them to America, but they were not necessarily a food that caught on with the mainstream. Basically, we don’t eat them as often as we eat black beans, pinto beans, etc.
But, in my humble foodie opinion… we should. Just take the time to do the following steps:
1. Slice open the pods as seen in the photo above. Remove the beans.
2. Par-boil the beans for a couple minutes. Then drain them and remove the outer waxy coating to get to the real bean.
3. Bring them back to a boil for a few minutes to make sure they are cooked.
I took my beans, put them in a food processor with some olive oil, 2 garlic cloves that I had peeled and boiled for a few minutes with the beans, and a little freshly grated parmesan.
Puree it and generously spread these green legumes on toasted bread. (My bread here was grilled, which is even better!)
The finishing touch here was some Red Alae Hawaiian Kai Sea Salt from nowhere else than my favorite place: Savory Spice Shop.
© Copyright A Bolder Table