I defrosted the freezer this week in anticipation of whats to come and decided a little Iron Chef competition was in order for us to use up the stuff that's got some age on it. I don't like to keep things in the freezer for more than a year and preferably less than that. Food starts to lose its nutritional value after a few months in the freezer and eventually loses its taste too. We actually did pretty well eating stuff up this year, I only had one small basket of items on the use first list.
What could you make with kasha, hazelnuts, tomato soup, whole tomatoes, green beans, black-eyed peas, pistachio nuts, sausage, bacon, roasted poblanos, serranos, corn, coconut and cranberries? In addition, we are picking loads of green and yellow beans and squash now and still have some of the shitakes from two weeks ago floating around in the fridge that need eating too.
My first effort was outstanding. A soup made with bacon, onions, garlic, corn, squash and poblanos, all cooked up with chicken stock, a little cumin, cayenne and white pepper. I pureed this base, added cream, salt and lime juice. Garnished with bacon bits, grilled chicken, green onions, pumpkin seeds toasted with chili and salt, and sauteed shitakes. WOW! This was inspired and tasty.
Tonight we'll have a black-eyed pea salad as part of our supper and I'm planning a baked orzo with that tomato soup. We'll see what else inspires us.
If you haven't yet voted for the Carrboro Farmers Market as the best market so they could win $5,000, you can do so by clicking on this link: http://www.care2.com/farmersmarket/Help them out and tell your friends you don't have to live in Carrboro to vote.