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Whenever I think about the week ahead and the meals that need to be made, a stroll through the farmer’s market always helps get the creative juices flowing. Each experience is different based on what’s in season and every time I come home with bags of freshly picked produce that I use to create great dishes.
This week, it was all about the greens. After looking through all of the produce stands, I decided on a bundle of hearty leeks, two types of bok choy and a bunch of rosemary sprigs. At the time, I didn’t know what I was going to do with the ingredients, but as the week went on the ideas came to me.
One of my favorite ways to use leeks is in a pot of soup. They add a great depth of onion flavor without being too strong and contribute a beautiful color as they start to cook. I usually combine them with asparagus soup but tomorrow I'm making a pureed broccoli leek soup. With the addition of fresh minced garlic and chopped rosemary, and topped with a pinch of Parmesan cheese, the combination should make a flavorful, comforting soup. Since the temperatures have dramatically dropped, soup was definitely the right idea.
Tonight, it’s Asian night and there are so many possibilities. I thought of creating an Asian soup with bok choy as the main vegetable, but instead I’m planning on sauteing both types of bok choy with classic Asian flavorings - soy sauce, sesame oil, sesame seeds, garlic and ginger, and mixing them with my favorite Sesame Noodles.
Although I’m adding the rosemary to the soup, I know I will also use more in the next week or so. In the fridge, it’s stored in a bag with a damp paper towel so anytime I want to add flavoring to eggs or chicken, I have fresh herbs ready to be used.
I would say it was a successful Farmer’s Market outing. Keep an open mind the next time you go to your local Farmer’s Market and enjoy the possibilities!