Kimchi or Sauerkraut
Purple Prairie Barley / Black Butte Chickpeas
Bacon / Dozen Eggs
Terra Greens Produce - Manhattan
Kimm's Organic Potatoes - Manhattan
Millcrick Farm - Hamilton
Farmented Foods - Kalispell
Timeless Natural Food - Ulm
Ranchland Packing - Butte / Three Hearts Farm - Bozeman
Thai Red Curry Squash Soup
Kabocha is a dense, starchy squash, and the most flavorful winter squash I've tried. It makes excellent curry or soup. Adapted from the Milk Street "Vegetables" cookbook. Serves 4.
1/4 C neutral-tasting oil, like grapeseed, safflower, or canola
1 large onion, or equivalent amount of shallots, halved and thinly sliced crosswise
Salt & pepper
2-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and minced or grated on a Microplane (sub 1 tsp dried if needed)
1-2 Tbs Thai red curry paste (this is a store-bought paste in a small jar, like the Thai Kitchen brand)
1 14-oz can full-fat coconut milk
1 stalk lemongrass, halved and bruised, outer dry leaves discarded (optional)
1 Tbs sweetener: white or brown sugar, agave, maple syrup, or honey all work
2 tsp fresh lime zest, plus 2 Tbs fresh lime juice
~2 lbs Kabocha squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 2-in chunks *see note on pre-cooking squash*
1/2 C fresh cilantro, mint, basil, or a combo, roughly chopped
In a large pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Add the onion/shallots, reduce heat to medium, and cook, stirring often until light golden brown, 7-10 min. Reduce heat if they're browning too quickly. Remove pot from heat, and using a slotted spoon, transfer onions to a paper towel and sprinkle with salt. Leave the oil in the pot and return to heat.
Add the ginger and curry paste and cook, stirring often, until brown and fragrant, ~2 min. Add coconut milk, lemon grass (if using), sweetener, and lime zest. Scrape up any bits stuck to the pan, then add the squash, 2 1/2 C water, 1/2 tsp salt, and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 15-20 min, or until squash is completely tender. Let cool for ~5 min and remove lemongrass.
Blend using immersion blender in the pot, or transfer to a blender in batches so it doesn't explode. Blend until smooth, return to pot if needed, add lime juice, and heat through. Season to taste, then serve topped with fried onions, herbs, and a bit more lime zest (chopped peanuts are good, too!)
Purple Barley Salad with Kabocha Squash
You can use any whole grain you like, though I think Purple Barley will be both beautiful and delicious. French or Black Beluga lentils, or Black Butte Chickpeas, could also work well. Recipe adapted from Ellen Bennet, Food&Wine. Serves 6-8.
2 C Purple Prairie Barley
~2 1/2 lbs Kabocha squash (or a combo of kabocha + acorn squash) halved, seeded, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-in pieces *See note about pre-cooking the squash*
2 medium parsnips, scrubbed well and cut into 1-in pieces
1/4 C extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for roasting
Salt and pepper
1 small shallot, or equivalent amount of onion, minced
2 Tbs fresh lemon juice
2 Tbs red wine vinegar
5-6 oz kale, thick ribs removed and slice thin, crosswise - sub spinach or chard
1/3 C pomegranate seeds (optional)
1/3 C dried cherries - sub dried cranberries or other tart fruit
3 oz feta cheese, crumbled
1/3 C lightly packed mint leaves, chopped - sub any tender, fresh herb you like
In a large saucepan of salted boiling water, cook the barley until tender, ~45 min - 1 hr. Start testing for doneness after 30 min or so. It should be pleasantly chewy, not crunchy. Drain well and set aside.
Meanwhile, cook your squash and parsnips. Either put both diced, raw veggies tossed with 2-3 Tbs olive oil on 2 baking sheets and roast at 425 for ~25 min until tender. OR roast the squash whole as suggested below. While it's cooling, roast the the diced parsnips tossed with 1-2 Tbs oil on a baking sheet until tender. When squash is cool, peel and chop. Season both with a bit of salt and pepper.
In a large bowl, whisk the shallot with the lemon juice, vinegar, a pinch each of salt and pepper, and the remaining 1/4 C of olive oil. Add the barley, squash, parsnips, kale, pomegranate seeds (if using), and dried cherries and toss well. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Top with feta and mint just before serving. The salad can be made up to 2 hours ahead and kept at room temperature.
*Notes on Preparing Winter Squash*
Personally, I find peeling and cutting raw winter squash laborious and sometimes dangerous. Typically, I cook it whole instead by poking holes all over it with a knife and then either roasting it at 425 F for ~45 minutes, or microwaving for 10-15 minutes, rotating once or twice, until it's tender and easy to pierce. Let it cool somewhat before halving, scooping out the seeds, and removing the flesh from the peel with a spoon, knife, or your fingers. Then chop it up as needed and proceed with your recipe.
Additional Recipe Suggestions
Sauerkraut is for more than just bratwurst (though that's a perfectly respectable use!) Try it on sandwiches, in salads, or to garnish soups. We use ferments like sauerkraut and kimchi as condiments, to add some punchy, bright flavors to many dishes.
This page links to a number of kimchi-inspired recipes, like bibimbap, which could also use purple barley, or kimchi fried rice.
Kimchi Soup - I bet you could successfully use bacon in place of pork belly if you cut the salt a bit...
Sauerkraut Soup - Potatoes, bacon, sauerkraut... delish! (you could definitely substitute parsnips for some of the root veggies)