Asparagus and Leek Fried Rice

We recently spent the day in and around Bucks County, PA. This area that stretches from the New Jersey border, near the Delaware River, is simply beautiful. Filled with beautiful farmland, old homes, and adorable little shops and wineries – there is just so much to see. As we were driving to our destination, we passed by a farm that advertised some fresh asparagus. I love asparagus! I got super excited, but we had somewhere to be. I made note of the sign and hoped that we’d be able to buy some of the good green stuff on our way home.

We stopped by the farm on our way back. At first I was disappointed to see that the place appeared “closed.” On closer look though, I noticed a small little shack with open doors that appeared to have farm goods inside. I got out of the car to inspect. They had a small selection of asparagus, herbs, greens and fresh honey available. There was no shopkeeper, but all items were priced and there was a locked box to deposit your money in. Love it! I fished out a few dollars and bought some asparagus! Love this kind of shopping. Further down the road, we stopped at another farm for fresh brown eggs. It was a lovely day!

8745779575_94e4012e4b_z

I was so excited to use this fresh and local asparagus. Earlier that morning, I had picked up some lovely fresh leeks. I love the way leek pairs well with asparagus. I was thinking about just sauteing the two as a side dish, but then it occurred to me to use the vegetables in my main dish.

Asparagus and Leek Fried Rice
 
Asparagus and Leek Fried Rice
Author:
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp. rice bran oil or canola oil (or any other high heat friendly oil)
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. crushed fresh ginger
  • 8 oz. chicken-style seitan (or protein of your choice)
  • 2 leeks
  • 1 lb. asparagus, cut to 1.5 inch pieces
  • 4 cups cooked and cooled rice
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tbsp. tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 2 tsp. red pepper flakes
Instructions
  1. Start by cleaning your leeks. Slice them in thin rounds and soak in cold water. The sand and grit will soak to the bottom. Blot dry with a paper towel.
  2. In a large wok or fry pan, heat up the oil.
  3. Add in the garlic, ginger and onion. Cook for about 5 minutes to soften a bit.
  4. Add in the seitan chicken or any protein for that matter. Cook for two more minutes.
  5. Add in the cleaned and trimmed leeks and asparagus. Cook for about 3-5 minutes.
  6. Stir in the already cook rice. Mix to incorporate well.
  7. Add in the rest of the seasonings. Cook for another 5-10 minutes, stirring as you go. Taste and add additional seasoning as necessary. I love adding some chili pepper flakes and a squirt of sriracha when I eat it,
  8. This dish is very versatile. Feel free to add other vegetables or change up your protein.

 

 

Potato Leek Soup

Last week I picked up my younger daughter from daycare and was informed that there were some issues with her food and eating. I got all nervous. I couldn’t imagine what the problem could be. I prepare her lunches. I send it to daycare. She is fed. End of story, right? Well, I was wrong. Apparently, her well-meaning teacher is concerned. She doesn’t like that my daughter gets the same rendition of food each week. There is some variety, but I do admit, it is pretty predictable. The teacher was concerned that we were depriving her and decided to take matters in to her own hands. She fed my daughter some of the non-kosher, sodium-filled, school served chicken soup. There was a meeting after school discussing the events of the day. I went home with some guilty-parent syndrome. Maybe I do need to start sending some new lunch options, but what will she eat? So I am on the road to becoming a super-duper lunch maker. For the younger daughter only. The older daughter still insists on peanut butter sandwiches, cream cheese sandwiches, or pasta in a thermos. Ah Well.

Potato Leek Soup is a wonderful hearty and warm soup. It is perfect for chilly winter nights along with a salad. This soup only works when you stick to the recipe. You should never skimp by substituting the butter, or anything else for that matter. It is a very simple soup and comes together in minutes.

Potato Leek Soup
Ingredients:

4 leeks, only the whites, halved, washed, and sliced (Leeks are very sandy – wash carefully)
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 stick of butter
5 medium potatoes, diced

1 carton of veggie broth, or 4-5 cups
4 cups of water

salt
pepper
2 teaspoons of marjoram


In a large pot, saute the leeks, onions, and garlic in the butter. Cook on medium-low heat for 10 minutes.

Add in the diced potatoes. Stir to coat the potatoe in some of that yummy butter.

Add in the broth, water, and seasonings.

After the soup comes to a boil, turn it to medium-low. Let it simmer for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes, mash the potatoes and stir, or blend with an immersion blender to your desired consistency. I prefer the blender method.

In crafty news, I knit my first hat!

1 2