Cooking From My CSA Box

Each week, I pick up a box of a variety of fruits and vegetables from a wonderful local CSA, Welcome Table Farm .  I really enjoy it as there is always a variety of different fresh foods, including lots of stuff that I really like but never think to buy when I am in auto-pilot shopping mode.  I’ve also had the opportunity to try a few new things and my daughter learned that she adores fresh beets, something that I seldom even think of buying otherwise.

Last Friday, we were invited to a neighborhood barbecue/potluck for the 4th of July and I decided I wanted to try a new recipe using lots of foods from my most recent box.  I decide to try a recipe that had sounded good to me for a long time from a cookbook I really like, Simply in Season (and if you visit this site, you have the option of signing up to have a recipe from this book sent to you each week).  I decided I wanted to make the Veggie Bread Ring recipe.  Here’s a picture, followed by my version of the recipe (I changed a few things as I nearly always do for some reason!) :

Veggie Bread Ring:

4 cloves garlic (pressed)

2 cups assorted fresh vegetables,minced (I used broccoli, grated carrots, green onions, and yellow summer squash)

1 cup ricotta cheese

2 cups grated cheese (I used a mixture of cheddar, monterey jack and parmesan)

2-3 tablespoons fresh herbs (I used fresh dill)

1/2 teaspoon salt

A few shakes of black pepper

Mix well.

1/2 recipe Zucchini Yeast Rolls (recipe below- or  the recipe says you can use any whole wheat bread dough for one loaf)

Prepare dough according to directions through first rising. Punch down. On a lightly floured surface roll into an 18 x 24-inch rectangle. Cover with vegetable-cheese mixture, pressing down lightly. Roll dough into a long log, as for cinnamon buns. Bring ends of the log together and pinch shut. Transfer ring to a greased baking sheet. Using kitchen scissors or a sharp knife, slice into ring at 1-inch  intervals, going about three-fourths of the way into the log. After making cuts all the way around, twist each piece slightly so the rolls fan out from center of the ring.

Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place 25 minutes. Bake in preheated oven at 350F for 25 minutes. Eat immediately or cool on wire rack and store in refrigerator.

Here is the recipe for the Zucchini Yeast Rolls (also changed slightly from the recipe in Simply in Season):

2-3 cups summer squash, shredded (I used both green and yellow)

1 cup milk

1/2 cup sugar

3 tablespoons oil (I used olive oil, but may try melted butter next time)

2 tsp. salt

Combine above ingredients in a saucepan and heat slowly until warm.

Mix together in large mixing bowl:

1 cup bread flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

2 Tablespoons active dry yeast

Add liquid ingredients and beat well until smooth.

Stir in additional flour- from 1-3/4 to 2-1/2 cups (I needed a bit more, I think due to using the higher amount of very juicy summer squash) to make a soft dough.  Knead for 8-10 minutes until smooth and elastic (I used my kitchenaid  mixer for this part, and kneaded for about 6 minutes).

Place dough in greased bowl (turn to grease both sides), cover with a damp cloth and let rise until double (which only took about 40 minutes in my warm kitchen).

At this point divide dough in half and proceed to make veggie ring with one part and rolls with the other part.  I made a pan of 16 rolls with the remaining half.   Let rise again(covered) for 25 minutes, as in instructions for Veggie Ring.   Bake both rolls and veggie ring for about 25 minutes, until golden brown.

Here’s a picture of the finished rolls:

This is a great way to use  zucchini and other summer squash, which I’ll be making again.  And- every speck of both the rolls and the veggie bread ring were eaten at the picnic, with lots of requests for the recipes.

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