Eggplant Parmigiano

23 06 2008

Here is a recipe submission for Eggplant from a wonderful customer, Heidi!

I tried this last week and it was a hit. I will do it again with the eggplant for this past week. This from Rachel Ray’s book 365 No Repeats. It is called Turkey Cutlet Parmigiano with warm, fresh grape tomato topping, pesto and Mozzarella. I substitued the eggplant for the turkey cutlet.

2 tablespoons Olive oil
1 yellow onion finely chopped
3 garlic cloves chopped
Salt and pepper
4 tablespoons flour
2 eggs
1 cup Italian bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated parmigiano-reggiano
1/4 cup Flat leaf parsley ( I sprinkle dried parsley) chopped
2 lbs turkey cutlets (I used the eggplant instead)
1 pint grape tomatos
1/2 dry white wine or chicken stock
1 cup store bought, good quality pesto sauce ( I used a dry mix and fresh, could have been better)
1 large ball of fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced or grated

For grape tomato topping, preheat a medium size skillet over medium high heat with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add onions, garlic, salt, and pepper. Cook until the onions are transluent, 2 to 3 minutes.

While the onions are cooking, set up the breading station for the turkey cutlets (Eggplant). Place flour in a shallow dish. In another shallow dish, thoroughly beat together the eggs with a splash of water. In a third shallow dish, combine bread crumbs, parmigiano and parsley. Heat a thin layer of olive oil in a large skilled just enough to coat the bottom of the pan, over medium to medium high heat. Season the cutlets with salt and pepper on both sides and turn lightly in the flour ( I omitted the season of the eggplant). Thoroughly coat the cultlets (eggplant) in the eggs and then in the breading, and add to hot oil. Cook the cutlets (eggplant) in a single layer, in 2 batches if neccessary, for 3 or 4 minutes on each side, until the juices run clear and the breading is evenly browned. Remove the cooked cutlets (eggplant) to a plate lined with a paper towel.

To the skillet with the onions add the grape tomatoes and white wine or stock. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes start to burst and the wine has reduced by half.

Preheat the broiler

Arrange the cooked cutlets (eggplant) on a cookie sheet. Top each cutlet (eggplant) with a little of the warm fresh grape tomato topping, top that with a little pesto, then top that with 2 slices of mozzarella cheese. Place cookie sheet under the broiler and broil unti the cheese warms and melts but has not browned. Serve immediately.

This is a great recipe with the turkey and was great with the eggplant. My kids even ate this!!


Grilled Rosemary Chicken

17 06 2008

1/3 c. olive oil
1/3 c. balsamic vinegar
1 T. dried rosemary
1/2 t. crushed red pepper flakes
1 clove garlic, minced
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 green bell pepper, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 small red onion, quartered
3 carrots, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 eggplant, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

• Turn the grill on high; make a large pocket of foil folded on the side with the top open.
• In a large bowl, combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, rosemary, red pepper flakes, and garlic.
• Place green bell pepper, red bell pepper, red onion, carrots, and eggplant in the marinade, and toss to coat. Spread out the veggies in the pocket of foil, and close. Set on grill.
• Place chicken in the bowl, and marinate 5 minutes. Set chicken on grill.
• Grill the chicken for 20 minutes, or until cooked through. Grill the vegetables for 30 minutes, or until the edges of the vegetables brown.

What the heck are those?

17 06 2008

These two items were in The Oki today, but not all of you were home to hear them “explained.”  So here’s the deal:  

The big green thing is a shibui and is a vegetable.  I was told it’s used in vegetable soups a lot but the more interesting suggestion was to cut it in half (longways), scoop out the seeds, sprinkle it with sugar and throw it in the freezer.  Wait a bit and then scoop it out and eat like ice cream.  Can’t wait to try it!!

The brown/yellow-ish looking thing is called akamori and is also a vegetable.  It’s evidently very similar to a cucumber and should be eaten in the same situations you’d use a kuke!   Happy trying…

Wha’dya do with the bag? 06.17.08

17 06 2008

The MiniOki:  carrots, potatoes, onion, cucumbers, lettuce, 2 bags cherry tomatoes, mixed color peppers

The Oki:  Mini + brown/yellow thing (akawori), big green thing (shibui), eggplant, bean sprouts, okra, hot green peppers

The TropOki:  bananas, pineapple, passionfruit, plums


I heard fun things when I delivered bags about what you did with various items — keep the info coming!  Recipes are VERY welcome & appreciated!  🙂

Chattin’ with Melody

16 06 2008

So, Melody and I (Joelle) agreed that since she loves organizing and I love to write, I’m going to interview her each week and tell ya what’s up in the world of fruit and veg… This will be written as if Melody is chatting with you…


“So, I’ve been getting some interesting nicknames lately… The Veggie Queen and then cool Kelly called me the Sweet Temptress in her Oki Hai article. I feel like both of those things sometimes. Other times over the last weeks I’ve felt gigantically overwhelmed.  Six short weeks ago, this business didn’t exist. And this week we are making 50 deliveries. Unbelievable. Sooooo much more than I expected.

At first I struggled a lot with how much time it would take to purchase, bag and deliver the veggies to houses all over the map.  Some of you have graciously received knocks on your door WAY too late at night!!  And then there have been email and paypal and website problems…  The difficulty of trying to please everyone with the content of the bags… 

But the difficult parts have paled in comparison to the FUN this adventure is!  I’m loving the gorgeousness I see when I open my frig each day.  And I love that these same items are in your homes as well.  It makes me smile to know you’re probably staring at the *#&!%@ unexpected vegetable too, wondering what to make — but figuring something out and getting those “unexpected” vitamins & minerals into your bodies as well.  

I’ve so enjoyed meeting you all and getting to know the guys up at the farmer’s market (more on them soon!).  I definitely feel like I’m part of something bigger than myself.  Thank you all for being part of the bigger bit.  🙂


PS  The stupidest things I’ve done with the vegetables the last couple weeks has to be getting the hot pepper juice under my fingernails and having that sting for HOURS.  And then there was the night I decided to try a stir-fry which included goya AND sweet potatoes.  AWFUL!!”

Wha’dya do with the bag? 06.10.08

16 06 2008

MiniOki:  okra, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, green beans, onion, carrots, potatoes, FLOWERS!!

Oki:  MiniOki + tomatoes, cabbage, squash (pumpkin-like), green/purple lettuce, eggplant

TropOki:  bananas, watermelon (Thurs got honeydew), pineapple


Love to hear what fun things you created this week!

Chicken News

8 06 2008

Thrilled to tell you that the Kadena Commissary is now selling frozen ORGANIC chicken breasts!!!  They are pricey ($12 for 2 lbs) but they are there — which is just exciting.  I don’t know whether the other commissaries have them or not — please let me know.  (At Kadena, they are across from the yogurt in the open freezer between the cornish hens & duck.) 

Also, right next to the boxes of organic chicken are chicken breasts, legs, wings from Tyson’s 100% Natural line which claim “No Antibiotics, No Hormones, No Artificial Ingredients.”  This sounds pretty darn good, but upon doing some further research I guess there is some significant problems with their claims.  Another blogger has some good info on it…  click here.