Thursday, April 12, 2012

Adapted Parkey Stew

Cabbage can be a bit of a struggle. Let's face it, when it shows up in the CSA box it's just not that exciting. Sadly, too often, it sits there in the fridge until it's too late.

I've been looking for some go-to recipes for cabbage so that we could use it and enjoy it when it's in the delivery. I know it's good for you and all that. So I've tried a few approaches to come up with something tasty for cabbage but nothing has done the trick for us yet.


A few months ago, I was paging through the Penzey's catalog (Winter 2012) and saw this recipe for Parkey Stew which was named after this person's grandfather. This recipe was for a cabbage stew that I knew I could adapt to our tastes and it might be that elusive go-to recipe for cabbage. I cut it out and added to my notebook of recipes to get to (most of which haven't been gotten to).

The basic idea is kielbasa and cabbage in a tomato and broth base. And it worked!

Below is just my starting point and my first adaptation of the original recipe.

Adapted Parkey Stew


  • Olive oil
  • Carrots - 3 to 4, peeled, and quartered and chopped into fingers
  • Garlic - 2 to 3 cloves, minced
  • Broth - 16 oz. 
  • Tomatoes - 1 15 oz. can crushed or diced tomatoes. Some brands have extra herbs and ingredients.
  • Cabbage - 1 small to medium head of green cabbage
  • Kielbasa - 2 Tofurky kielbasa sliced
  • Herbs - Various - Use what you have - Tonight I used some Foxpoint Seasoning and some Mural of Flavor. Next time would add a few shakes of red pepper flakes.
  • Salt - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Pepper - 1/2 teaspoon
  • Rice - 1-2 cups of cooked rice
  • Parmesan cheese - grated as a garnish
OK, in the original recipe, there were 3 leeks which I skipped because I finally did a good job using them up in the last post. But know you can add them.

I also added the rice to the recipe because we had it as a leftover in the fridge. My wife suggested tossing it in. It was the perfect suggestion since the rice absorbs the flavors and makes it a more filling and satisfying dish.


  • In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil and brown kielbasa slices and then remove
  • Add sliced carrots (and leeks) and cook about 10 minutes stirring often
  • Add the garlic and cook about 2 minutes
  • Add broth, tomatoes, and cabbage to pot along with seasonings and herbs
  • Bring to a mild boil and simmer for 20-30 minutes
  • Add back the kielbasa as the recipe approaches completion
  • Add cooked rice with the kielbasa (optional)
  • When done, remove from heat and let cool a few minutes
  • Top with grated cheese and some freshly grated black pepper

We decided that this was a keeper and it could evolve with time. I think having some strong but not overpowering herbs and spices can take this recipe to another level.

There's lots of room to be creative with this one.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Leek and Potato Day

The leeks have been coming at us with a steady pace from the box. They were piling up in the fridge, so today was a day of action. Get through those leeks! It started with:

Potato and Leek Frittata


This frittata could have been just a basic leek and potato frittata but I also added some leftover ingredients to help clear out the fridge
  • Get some herbed butter melting in a professional medium skillet (one that can go directly into the oven)
  • Preheat oven to 400 degree
  • Peel some potatoes, dice them, and get them started in the skillet. I used 3 medium red skin potatoes that came in the box
  • Clean and slice the leek and add them to the potatoes and butter
  • Chop up some onion or shallots
  • Chop up a leftover Tofurky sausage
  • Dice a leftover bell pepper half
  • Toss everything in the skillet with the potatoes and leeks
  • Add some salt and pepper along with some Foxpoint Seasoning
  • Add some freshly chopped basil
  • Crack four eggs into a bowl and mix well along with some parsley and black pepper and a generous splash of milk
  • Add egg mixture to the skillet
  • Let it start to set on the fire for about 5 minutes or so
  • Sprinkle the top with some cheese. I had some leftover feta
  • Transfer to the oven and cook until the top begins to brown. Around 15 minutes.
  • Remove from the over and let it cool for a few minutes
  • Quarter the frittata and serve 

The evening focused on a new soup that we think we saw in a Sunset magazine. It's a healthy and tasty take on the potato and leek soup that has no cream but uses spinach "making it a beautiful electric green and good for your waistline."

It was a tasty soup and definitely one I'd make again. It's quick, easy, and healthy.

Spinach, Leek, and Potato Soup 


  • 2 large leeks
  • 2 tablespoons of butter or herbed butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups broth
  • 1 large golden or white potato - I used the last 4 red skin potatoes from the box
  • 1 8 oz bag spinach
  •  Croutons - optional

  • In a saucepan melt butter over medium heat
  • Add leeks and salt and cook until limp stirring often, about 5 minutes
  • Peel and dice potatoes and add to pan
  • Add broth and bring to a boil
  • Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork
  • Add spinach and cook until wilted
  • Puree with an immersion blender

Final score: 4 leeks gone; 1 still to go.