You know, today we are celebrating FOUR years of blog posts from Your Elf. We began on May 21 2014 with “To V or Not to V” and launched our great blogging adventure. We started incorporating ‘Elf’ in our titles in January 2015 and have tried to think of clever (and some not so clever) titles from thence on. Over the four years, we’ve published 168 blogs. We took a few months off in late 2014 to assess more clearly what we wanted to do; from then on, we’ve published pretty much every week. So, we shutting our little bloggery elf-fort down to focus on our Elf Facebook page and to learn more about blogging.
We have a couple of meals to share with you this week BOTH utilizing the awesome CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) from Two Dog Farms in Flora, MS. These folks KNOW how to put together a really great combination of vegetables! Here’s our most recent CSA. It’s so pretty we even use it for our Elf page cover. From left to right: Rainbow Swiss Chard, Mizuno mix (salad stuffs), broccoli, sweet peas, golden beets, fresh dill, torpedo onions, fennel bulb and fronds.
This is so pretty, it looks like a painting! So we jumped right in for a great Monday night supper with the Swiss chard and golden beets,
freekah (a great grain) and French lentils,
air-fried cauliflower pictured ready for the fryer
and vegan cornbread sticks.
Our final plating looked like this.
We also had some great slaw made with Just Mayo and apple cider vinegar. Believe us when we say this not last long!
Our next endeavor was to utilize the beautiful fennel bulb in one of our MOST favorite soups EVER!! Fennel and Tomato Soup. It’s not only absolutely delicious, it’s very very easy. Here’s the link fromI Vegetarian Times.
The VT site includes the nutritional values and here’s where it got a bit interesting. This recipe uses ‘store-bought’ Italian Sausages which have a much higher fat content than recipes you might be able to find online—specifically the Seitan Italian Sausages from the FatFree Vegan Kitchen
which have 5 grams of fat per sausage or The Gentle Chef Italian Sausages which tallied with 3 grams of fat per sausage (using the My Fitness Pal nutritional values calculator). So, if you are monitoring your fat intake, be aware of the differences in fat grams. In any event, this soup is delightfully delicious. We started out with our ‘mise en place’ of home grown Italian or Flat leaf parsley, the beautiful Fennel Bulb from Two Dog Farms CSA box, Dry Vermouth, Muir Glen crushed tomatoes, and EVOO.
Missing are the Sausages (you’ll see them shortly), a teaspoon of fennel seeds, and the plant-based chicken bouillon we always use. We sautéed the chopped fennel in the EVOO (for those of you watching fat, you may certainly opt to sauté in water or Olive Oil Spray).
The pan was deglazed with the vermouth (the alcohol burns off quickly) and the plant-based chicken bouillon and tomatoes were added.
Voila! Now, as we were tasting the cooked product, we wanted to ‘kick it up a notch’, so we added 1/2 teaspoon of Liquid Smoke and 1/8 teaspoon of EXTRA HOT cayenne from Patel’s Grocery. Believe us when we say that the EXTRA HOT moniker is ABSOLUTE TRUTH! With just that 1/8 teaspoon, we had all the heat we could handle. We ate this all week for lunch with toasted Spelt or Twice Fermented Rye Bread from Sunflower Oven in Jackson. If you’ve not tried any of Robert Raymond’s great breads at the local Farmer’s Market, by all means do! Here’s the link to some of the baked goods offered during the holidays.
He is currently working on additional baked vegan options as well!!
So, Elfin buddies, we bid you a farewell from this little blog. We’ve had a blast. There are so many wonderful Vegan Blogs out there to stay focused on plant-based eating and all the good food that you can make. Stay tuned to The Elf in the Kitchen’s Facebook page for our continuing Elfin antics. We may even see what we can do on a video!!
Until then and for always, remember to to LOOK for the GOOD, be an EXAMPLE of the GOOD, and ACT for the GOOD as HARD as you can, in as MANY WAYS as you can, EVERY DAY that you can. DO EPIC!