Celery or Cilantro Recipe? That is the question…

Wasn’t Sure if I Should Call This a Celery or Cilantro Recipe

I love cilantro! There I said it.  Now that that’s out of the way, back to the unanswered question. Is this a celery or cilantro recipe? I mean, it contains more celery but I happen to know that the flavour that packed the most punch was the cilantro.

I know this because this is more of a story than a recipe and it starts with the ending instead of the beginning.

What I mean by that is, I’m sitting here enjoying the outcome of my Green Only Lunch challenge, while I type this I Love Cowichan recipe post. Having the story unfold as it happens in real-time is simply, more genuine. And I have to say, it’s really good. The crispy cilantro was key. Mmmm

Cilantro Recipe Celery Stir Fry on Green Plate
I even used a green dish

Now, where was I? Right. The cilantro recipe. But first…

What’s a Greens Only Lunch Challenge?

Well, I was getting hungry and didn’t feel like making myself anything. But I’d promised myself I’d eat mostly veggies today and take a break from dairy. So I came up with a challenge to motivate myself. What can I say? Challenges work for me.

I had to make myself a savory stir fry using only green ingredients. Which brings us to…

The Must Love Cilantro Recipe

I have a hard time quantifying ingredients. Especially when it comes to veggie stir fry.  Stir fry is a very personal thing. Add however much of your favorites and substitute something you don’t like with a vegetable or herb that you do. You just have to keep it green.

Take the cilantro for example. I used most of a full batch of fresh cilantro. If you prefer Italian parsley or something else, use that.

Chopped up four stalks of celery and a fresh bunch of cilantro. Heated some grapeseed oil (made from green grapes) in the pan and added the celery and cilantro. Yeah! Now that it’s finally affordable again, I’ve been celerybrating 😉 this week. Chopped up and added four green onions. Tossed in a couple of pinches of dried chopped shallots. Chopped two strands of garlic scapes. Covered the greens with Sutton Creek Greek Spice blend.

And voila…my yummy green only stir fry aka the Must Love Cilantro Recipe

Must Love Cilantro Recipe
Crispy just like I wanted

Thanks for dropping by and having lunch with me 😉 Take care, follow us on Instagram & Facebook and pretty please don’t forget to shop local whenever you can.


Salad Recipes and Dressings Too

Salad Recipes Eat Local; Eat Fresh; Eat Healthily

Mixed Green Salads

Almost any combination of greens can be used in classic mixed green salad recipes. Try using at least two different kinds of fresh greens but three or four is even better.

Salad Recipes Page Image of Mixed Greens
Baby Lettuce Duncan Farmer’s Market May 2015

Make fun combinations by picking one from this group; Simpson, Boston or Iceberg lettuce.

Add a few others like Romaine, Escarole, Chicory, Endive, Watercress. Bibb Lettuce, Kale, or Spinach (the list is endless).

Always wash the greens very carefully, use them when they’re crisp and cold.

Dry them with a paper towel just before you’re ready to serve, and then tear the leaves (don’t cut them) into bite-sized pieces.

Add dressing also just before serving green salads. Always toss lightly and make sure that everything is well coated.

Tomatoes are not served with the classic Mixed Green Salad.

Now here are some super duper nummilicious recipes for salads that the whole family will enjoy…

Onion Cucumber Salad

  • 2 onions
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Peel the onions and cucumbers; cut into paper-thin slices. Cover with salted ice water.

Cover and chill for 3-4 hours.

Drain; add the vinegar, water, sugar, salt, and pepper. Serves 4-6.

Italian Onion Salad

  • 4 Large red Italian or sweet Spanish onions
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons wine vinegar
  • 8 anchovy fillets
  • 1/4 cup pitted black olives (Italian or Greek)

Peel the onions and slice paper thin. Cover with ice water; add the salt and a few ice cubes.

Let stand 30 min­utes.

Drain the onions and dry them.

Put the onions in a salad bowl; sprinkle with a mixture of the oil and vinegar.

Arrange the anchovies and olives on top. Serves 6-8.

Pepper Salad

  • 1/3 cup cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 4 cups chopped cabbage
  • 4 peppers (green & red), chopped
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped onion

Mix together the vinegar, oil, salt, pepper, mustard seeds, celery seeds, and brown sugar.

Toss together the cabbage, peppers, and onion. Add the dressing and mix thoroughly.

Chill for 3 hours before serving. Serves 6-8.

Asparagus Salad

  • 2 pounds of asparagus
  • ¼ cup of vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon Tabasco

Cut all the white part of the asparagus away. Cut the green part diagonally into 1-inch pieces. Cover with boiling water, then drain well immediately. Chill.

Mix together the oil, soy sauce, sugar, and Tabasco.

Toss with the asparagus just before serving. Serves 4-6.

Great places to get fresh veggies for your salads…

Vegetable Appetizer Recipes List

Vegetable Appetizer Recipes

The vegetable appetizer recipes page is just getting started so keep checking back for more veggie appetizer recipes.

Fresh is best!  Get as many of the ingredients as you can from local farms, markets or stores that sell local produce. Remember to support your community, your neighbors, your friends…Buy Local! Pretty Please.

Leek Vinaigrette Recipe

Leeks Vinaigrette Vegetable Appetizer RecipesWash carefully to remove all the earth.

Tie with thread into a bundle, or wrap a narrow piece of alum­inum foil around them.

Cook in boiling salted water 10 minutes, or until tender but firm.

Drain well; cool, and remove thread or foil.

Beat together the oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and mus­tard. Stir in the onion, parsley, and egg.

Pour over the leeks; chill at least 4 hours, or overnight.

Serves 6.

I know what you’re thinking…mushrooms aren’t vegetables. True, but where else was I going to put these nummilicious mushroom recipes?So here they are, on the vegetable appetizer recipe page 😉

Mushroom Pickles Recipe

Pickled Mushroom RecipeCombine and bring to a boil the vinegar, salt, lemon, chili sauce, and allspice.

Add the mushrooms and bring just to a boil.

Remove from heat immediately

Pack into jars and refrigerate for 24 hours before serving.

Keeps 3-4 weeks in the refrigerator, or longer if packed in sealed jars.

French Fried Mushrooms Recipe

Vegetable Appetizer Recipe for French Fried Mushrooms

Wash and thoroughly dry the mushrooms.

Cut in 1/2-inch slices, stems and all; toss with the flour.

Heat the oil to 375°; fry the mushrooms 2 minutes.

Drain well; sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Serve 4-6, or pierce with cocktail picks to serve as a hot hors d’oeuvre.

Recipe For Mushrooms in Parmesan Sauce

Recipe Mushrooms in Parmesan Sauce

Cook the broth, chili sauce, salt, ginger and onion over low heat for 5 minutes.

Melt the butter in a skillet; saute the mushrooms 5 minutes.

Mix in the hot sauce; cook over low heat 2 minutes, stirring once or twice.

Just before serving, blend in the cheese until melted.

Serve on toast, in patty shells or on crisp crackers.

Serves 4-6.

Russian Style Mushroom Recipe

Recipe For Mushrooms Russian Style

Melt the butter in a skillet; saute’ the onion 5 minutes.

Add the mushrooms, salt, and pepper; saute 5 minutes, or until browned and liquid evaporated.

Blend in the paprika and sour cream; heat but do not let boil.

Deli­cious on toast as a first course, or as a vegetable.

Serves 4-6.

Onions in Raisin Sauce Recipe


Onions in Raisin Sauce Veggie Recipe

Buy even-sized onions.

Heat the oil in a deep skillet; add the peeled onions, tossing until coated.

Mix in the water, vinegar, salt, pepper, sugar, tomato paste, marjoram, bay leaf, and raisins.

Cover, bring to a boil and cook over low heat 30 minutes, or until tender but firm. Shake the pan frequently.


Serves 8-10.

I will be adding more vegetable appetizer recipes soon.  In the meantime, if you have any great vegetable appetizer recipes or any type of veggie recipe that you’d like to share please share it in the comments or send me an e-mail.

I know, I know, I’ve said it before.  Here goes again…

Support Your Neighbours Your Friends Your Community…Buy Local! Pretty please :)

Vegetable Recipes

Vegetable Recipes and Veggie Advice

I’m putting together a bunch of vegetable recipes to share. Before you know it (fingers crossed) a whole list of easy to make veggie dishes will appear when you click here.

For now, let’s start with some veggie talk…

Duncan Farmers Market Vegetable Recipes Page ImageI prefer to eat and cook with fresh vegetables as much as possible.

My second choice is frozen. They can be a great offseason alternative to fresh, they are available all year round. This means we don’t always have to wait for summer to enjoy a great tasting broccoli dish or the spring-like taste of baby peas.

Nothing beats fresh for eating raw though. So, I try to eat and cook with veggies that are in season. This also happens to be when the prices are lowest. I also do my best to buy locally grown. Please, support your local farmers.

I’m pretty lucky when it comes to accessing fresh local veggies at reasonable prices. We have a lot of farmer markets surrounding us in the Cowichan Valley.  In fact, one of the biggest Saturday markets in British Columbia is just minutes away from home.

The Duncan Farmers Market is open every Saturday all year long and at last count has over 150 vendors. I enjoy my Saturday outings to the market.

We have the ability to buy directly from farmers and farm markets. A short car ride away in either direction we have Russell Farms Market & The Old Farm Market. 

And, summer through fall there’s also Grandma’s garden to pick from.

Rarely do I use canned vegetables from stores. Though, I will include a quick canned vegetable recipe or two. Because in a pinch sometimes canned veggies are the only option. So, why not spice them up a bit?

Veggie Advice

Select small, young vegetables whenever you can. They have the sweetest taste and crispiest texture. As tempting as it may be to get more bang for your buck by buying the biggest vegetable, or the older tired vegetables on clearance, sometimes it just isn’t worth the loss flavour, texture, and freshness.

For example, a tiny young carrot is wayyyy better tasting than a foot long giant overgrown one.

Though, when it comes to soups and stews, you can put those clearance rack veggies to some tasty use.

When it comes to frozen, quality is really important. Try to buy brands whose vegetables are frozen within hours of being picked. Some of the vegetable recipes will look at creative ways to cook with frozen.


Roast Vegetables Are Yummy

Roast Vegetables Rock

I love veggies especially roast vegetables! There I said it, and I’m not ashamed 😏 It’s not just because they’re healthy, but they’re also delicious!

I didn’t make it to the Duncan Farmers Market this week so I’m running low on fresh veggies. Guess I’ll be heading to the Old Farm Market tomorrow morning to stock up. In the meantime for supper I had carrots, yams and white potatoes to work with. Perfect for roasting!

Roast Vegetables Recipe

4 yams
6 russet potatoes
4 large carrots

XXX Tex Mex
Holy Smokes
Lemon Pepper
Ground Cardamon
Fine White Pepper

Grape seed oil or other oil of your choosing
Grated Parmesan optional

Peel wash & dice the carrots, yams and potatoes.

The size I cut the vegetables into depends on how quickly I want them cooked. In this case I’m aiming for about 30 minutes, so I cut diced them on the smaller size. Same goes for the oven temperature. I want them super crispy fast so I’ve set it a 450. My preference is 350 for 60 minutes. The longer the veggies roast, the more flavour enriched they become.

If they don’t crisp to my liking, I switch to broil for the last 5 minutes. Every oven is different. Mine kind of sucks. Bottom line adjust temp and time to the crispness of your liking.

Time to Spice the Veggies

I tossed the vegetables in a large metal bowl with grape seed oil so that they were fully coated.

Before I go any further I feel I should warn you that unless I’m following a recipe I rarely measure spices. So you’ll only be getting pinches of this or a smatterings of that from me when I’m describing my vegetable cooking adventures.

Now, where was I? Right…

Then I generously covered the veggies with XXX Tex Mex by triple smoke and mixed them well. Using spice shakers I added a very light dusting of Sutton Creek’s holy smokes, lemon pepper and dash of organic cardamon and fine white pepper. I mixed the vegetables and spices for a couple minutes and added the Parmesan.

I poured the vegetables onto a greased tray and popped it into my preheated 450 degree oven. At the 30 minute mark they were perfect, with no need to broil. The roasted vegetables were perfectly crisp. Just the way I like them.

Soup Soup n’ More Soup

Even more soup recipes

Russell Farms Market CowichanFall makes me want to make soup. On rainy days I want to eat it.

As the weather gets colder, and things become damp, there’s nothing quite like a big pot of hot n’ steamy potage simmering away on the stove.

Creamy soups are my favorite and these veggies are still available locally grown.

That’s a win-win in my books, so let’s start with those…recipes for cream of cabbage, cream of carrot, cream of mushroom and cream of onion soup.

I would most definitely love to hear back from anybody that makes one, two, three or all of these soups!

Potage Creme aux Choux – Cream of Cabbage Soup

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced potatoes
  • 4 cups shredded cabbage
  • 3/4 cup sliced onions
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • paprika

Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the potatoes, cab­bage, and onions.

Cover and cook over low heat 10 min­utes, shaking the pan frequently. Add the broth, salt, and pepper; cover again and cook 30 minutes.

Purée in an electric blender, or force through a sieve. Return to the saucepan; mix in the cream.

Heat and taste for seasoning. Serve sprinkled with paprika.

Serves 6-8.

Cream of Carrot Soup

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 cups sliced carrots
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup light cream
  • 1 tablespoon minced parsley
  • 1 hard-cooked egg, chopped

Melt the butter in a saucepan; add the carrots, salt, sugar, and pepper. Cook over low heat 10 minutes, stir­ring frequently. Add the broth; cook over low heat 30 minutes.

Puree in an electric blender, or force through a sieve. Mix in the cream and taste for seasoning.

Serve hot or iced, sprinkled with the parsley and egg. Serves 4-6

Cream of Mushroom Soup

  • 1 pound mushrooms
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons minced onion
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream

Wash and drain the mushrooms. Chop the stems and half the caps. Slice the remaining caps thin.

Melt the butter in a saucepan; sauté the chopped mushrooms and onion 5 minutes.

Blend in the flour; add the broth, stir­ring steadily to the boiling point. Add the sliced mush­rooms and pepper; cook over low heat 15 minutes.

Then mix in the cream; taste for seasoning.

Serve sprinkled with parsley, if desired. Serves 8-10.

Cream of Onion Soup

Cream of Onion Soup Recipe IngredientsMelt the butter in a saucepan; sauté the onions over low heat about 20 minutes, until browned.

Then mix in the flour and sauté another 5 minutes.

Add the water, salt, and pepper. Cover loosely and cook over low heat 25 minutes.

Beat the egg yolks and cream in a bowl. Gradually add about 3 cups of the soup, stirring steadily to prevent curdling.

Return to the balance of soup. Heat, mixing steadi­ly, but do not let boil.

Serve with a bowl of grated cheese.

Serves 6-8.


Cucumber; Did you know?

The cucumber did not originate in one particular place…

They were found in many parts of the world and as far back as prehistoric times. The Bible contains a very early cucumber reference.

Cucumber People by BreannaThere are Chinese writings dating back fifteen hundred years that reference the cucumber. The Romans had cucumbers, small and gnarled, but cucumbers nonetheless.

When explorers came to the New World they found cucumbers growing everywhere.

Many of the imperfections, the knobs and prickles, the spines and warts, that originally adorned cucumbers, have long been eliminated by selective horticulture. Most new cucumber varieties are quite straight rather than curved in the shape of a half-moon like their ancestors.

Hadn’t really intended on discussing cucumbers in particular 😉 Plan was to share two dressing or dip recipes and then let you know I’ve added a new page of salad recipes…

Cucumber Dressing or Dip

  • 1 cup finely chopped cucumbers
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon minced dill (optional)
  • 1 cup sour cream

Drain the cucumbers very well. Mix with the salt, lemon juice and dill. Fold into the sour cream. Chill. Serve with sea food or vegetable salads. Makes about 2 cups.

Parsley Dressing or Dip

  • 3 tablespoons minced parsley
  • ¼ cup finely chopped dill pickle
  • ¼ cup chopped tomatoes
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup sour cream

Mix together the parsley, dill pickle, tomatoes and salt. Fold into the sour cream. Chill. Great served with sea food. Makes about 2 cups.

Veggies for dipping

Select a variety of crisp, chilled fresh vegetables such as cucumber slices, celery stalks, carrot sticks, cauliflower flowerets, Bel­gian endive, artichoke leaves, radish roses, green and red pepper sticks, tiny plum tomatoes and small mush­rooms. Arrange them attractively around the dip.

Salad Recipes

Hope you enjoy the recipes!

Take care,


PS- Remember to shop local…support your community, your neighbours & your friends! Pretty please 😉

Support Local Farm Markets in your area

Veggie Recipes

Recipes Using Frozen Artichokes

As fresh garden veggies become a thing of the past (well a past season that is) it’s time to start being creative with frozen vegetables. They can be a great off-season alternative to fresh vegetables. Frozen vegetables are available all year round. We don’t have to wait until summer to enjoy garden fresh taste. But… Quality is really important.  Try choosing vegetables that have been frozen within an hour or two of being picked (with no additives). Check for local farm produce that is also available frozen.

 Here are a two nummy artichoke appetizer recipes.

Marinated Artichokes and Shrimp Recipe

Cook the artichokes 1/2 minute less than package directs. Drain well and chill. Beat the egg yolk in a bowl; add the oils, mustard and vinegar, beating steadily. Mix in the scallions and parsley, and then the shrimp and artichokes. Marinate in the refrigerator 4 hours, basting occasionally. Serves 6.

Artichokes a la greque Recipe

Let the artichokes thaw sufficiently to separate. In a saucepan, combine the other ingredients. Bring to a boil and cook over low heat 25 minutes. Add the artichokes; cook 5 minutes. Taste for seasoning. Pour into a dish (not metal), cool, then refrigerate until needed. The artichokes will keep about 2 weeks. Serves 4-6.

  Serve With Main CourseSauteed Artichoke Hearts

Partially defrost the artichokes. Mix together the flour, salt and pepper. Lightly roll each artichoke in the mix­ture. Heat the oil in a skillet; sauté the artichokes until browned. Serves 3-4.

Vegetable Combination

Recipe Artichauts a la Mirielle

Heat the oil in a deep skillet; sauté the onions 10 min­utes, shaking the pan frequently. Add the artichoke hearts, broth, salt, pepper and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, cover and cook over low heat 15 minutes. Sprinkle with the parsley. Serves 6-8.

Easy Frozen Vegetable Recipes

Dry the artichokes on paper towels. Heat the oil in a skillet; lightly brown the artichokes in it. Add the garlic, peas, lettuce, salt and pepper. Cook over low heat 10 minutes, adding a very little water if necessary to keep from burning. Serves 8-10.


Artichokes for Sale at Market at Campo De' Fiori
Artichokes for Sale at Market at Campo De’ Fiori

Click here for some Frozen Broccoli Recipes

Broccoli Sicilian Style or with Lemon Butter Sauce Recipes

How to get kids to eat their broccoli. This first one is an incredibly easy way to add some flavor to your “green trees” as my daughter likes to call them…

broccoli with lemon butter sauce

Cook the broccoli 1 minute less than package directs; drain.

Heat together the butter, lemon juice, salt and pepper; pour over the broccoli and sprinkle with the egg yolk.

Serves 4-6.

 Broccoli Sicilian Style

1 large bunch broccoli, or 2 packages frozen  

1 teaspoon salt

Broccoli, Sicilian Style

Wash the fresh broccoli thoroughly.

Remove the coarse leaves and tough lower portions of the stalks.

Split lengthwise. Place in a skillet with the salt and boiling water to a depth of ½-inch.

Bring to a boil and cook over low heat 5 minutes. Cover and cook over low heat 15 minutes, or until tender. Drain and keep hot.

Cook frozen broccoli 1 minute less than package directs; drain and keep hot.

Prepare the sauce while the vegetable is cooking.

Heat the oil in a saucepan; sauté the onions and garlic 5 min­utes.

Blend in the flour and pepper.

Gradually add the broth, stirring steadily to the boiling point; cook over low heat 5 minutes.

Mix in the cheese until melted, then stir in the anchovies and olives.

Pour over the broccoli. Serves 4-6.

 Baskets of Fruits and Vegetables

Baskets of Fruits and Vegetables



Eggplant Caviar Recipe

Eggplant Caviar Ingredients
Eggplant Caviar Ingredients

If you’re looking to impress company with a delicious vegetable appetizer, how does Eggplant Caviar sound? Fancy right? It’s a much easier recipe than the name implies.

Wash and dry the eggplant. Place on a baking sheet and bake in a 400° oven for around 45 minutes, or until the skin is browned and split. Turn several times.

Peel the eggplant, then chop with the onion until very fine. Sea­son with the salt and pepper; beat in the olive oil. Mix in the lemon juice and parsley.

Taste for seasoning. Serve with buttered pumpernickel (find fresh bread or recipe ingredients at the Duncan Farmer’s Market).

Makes about 2 1/2 cups.

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