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Sep 10, 2007 08:45 PM

Us v. the vegetables

We do not have a home garden, but we have a serious love of our farmers' markets. Thus, we come home every Saturday morning with more veg than anyone should have to deal with outside a veg packing plant. We've been handling it pretty well through the summer, but the fall produce is so wonderful that we are...ahem...overbuying.

We dealt with the problem fairly well making a veg curry stew tonight. Very good, and used up a tremendous amount of purchases, but still...

How do all you market junkies deal with the bounty? And as an aside, I cannot ( will not, as I did it all my growing up) can - although I will and do freeze. I'm looking for inspiration for all the green and red and orange and purple and yellow things sitting on my counter. I know who I'm talking have the same problem.

We're very adventurous. We love veg. We're just overwhelmed right now, and needing ideas.

P.S. Don't tell me to buy less. I know I should. But I know I won't. Just give me your ideas.

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  1. You could do as a friend of mine does. She buys veggies just to look at. Instead of flowers she puts vegetables in bowls around the house. She loves the look and the aroma. She also has bowls of fresh herbs. It really is lovely. She rarely cooks, but loves fresh food.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Janet

      I store mine that way - but I do cook them - not the most artistic arrangement - but colorful:

      1. re: MMRuth

        Oooh! I see ratatouille there. Or a luscious caponata. Both keep a long time in the fridge.

    2. korean bibimbap is perfect for using tons of vegetables, no limitations, except how much energy you want to exert chopping them up.

      4 Replies
      1. re: alex8alot

        alex, I love Korean food and have no qualms about spending loads of time at the chopping block. So...veg as the garnishes, or do you have some secret stock recipe? Tell me what you do?

        Thanks, Cay

        1. re: cayjohan

          Well to be frank, the vegetables are merely a vehicle for the gochujang sauce and the rich, runny yolk of the crowning fried egg. Basically I julienne any and all veg separately. I don't know why, I suppose because my grandmother does it that way and it looks so much better on the platter, but they are all seasoned the same! and then mixed together in the bowl... madness. anyway, satl, pepper, minced garlic, maybe a pinch of sugar if using a particularly bitter veg. I never have the super traditional korean veg on hand (fiddlehead fern, burdock, etc.) For myself, spinach and shitake are a must. If you don't have a gochujang sauce you like, I can tell you mine, it isn't traditional, but I haven't had any complaints!

          1. re: alex8alot

            I'd love to know your non-traditional sauce...and the inspiration you've given me is great, with all the greens we have. And, oh, the runny egg yolk. One of my favorite culinary delights!

            Got my pencil ready... (and thank you.)

          2. re: cayjohan

            hi cay, sorry, didn't notice this earlier! I hope you aren't now confronted with a dearth of vegetables! So my sauce isn't radically different, but I stipulated that it isn't traditional because I ddidn't want people (like my grandma) saying "that doesn't go in there!"

            I start with about 4 tbsp of gochujang
            1 tbsp brown sugar
            carbonated lemon drink or ginger ale to loosen up the sauce
            2 cloves of minced garlic
            1 tsp soy sauce
            dashes of fish sauce to taste

            or I add more sugar and use chicken or beef stock to loosen the sauce

            and I never use sesame oil or seeds, which are usually standard. I find the sesame oil way too overpowering, in ANYTHING!!! I hate the stuff.

            and I prefer the gochujang made without added wheat, and that uses rice flour as the starch. I find it tastes much cleaner and spicier.

            ahve a great weekend!

        2. Grill up a whole bunch and use them for the next two days in every course (with eggs in the morning, with goat cheese at lunch, pureed in to a dip as a snack, over pasta or diced up with some quinoa with dinner). I find they'll get used much more quickly if they're already cooked and just need to be thrown into or onto things.

          1. Roasting almost any vegetable is wonderful. And of course a soup would keep in the freezer if you're overwhelmed with food.

            1. Soup! Lots of varieties available and you can then freeze in individual servings. I also like to make: curries, tians, stir fry when I'm lazy, salads, salsas. You could also pickle if you're into that.