Farmer’s Market time!

I am loving the farmer’s markets right now! While I wait for my own garden to start producing serious amounts of veggies, I’m taking advantage of other farmers’ produce. We did a quick trip to the Hillsboro Farmer’s Market on Sunday. We were hoping to find some asparagus at a decent price, because I refuse to pay $6.99/lb for the huge ugly-looking asparagus I saw at the grocery store last week! Didn’t find any, but we did score on zucchini and eggplant.

My little secret? I have never, ever eaten eggplant in my entire life … until today. I’m not sure how I made it 30+ years without even trying it, but it was one that slipped by me. So, I got brave today and decided to try another new recipe. Hubby and I saw a variation of this recipe on Food Network, on 10 Dollar Dinners. She made a dish called Eggplant Tian. Her recipe called for onions, which I didn’t have and which didn’t sound good. I substituted zucchini in it’s place. It also called for either parmesan or mozzarella cheese to melt over the top. Since we aren’t eating any dairy right now, we skipped that (although I’m sure it would be yummy with that addition!). So, here’s my new recipe I tried. It turned out quite tasty, and was pretty economical.

2 cups eggplant, sliced about 1/4 inch thick
2 cups zucchini, sliced about 1/4 inch thick
2 large tomatoes (or 4 roma tomatoes), sliced about 1/4 inch thick
salt (or Nu-Salt, which I used)
Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning
a couple dashes of low-sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp olive oil

Heat olive oil in large pan on medium heat. Add eggplant, season with salt, and saute until slightly browned on each side. Remove eggplant, add zucchini to pan and repeat same process. Once eggplant and zucchini have been removed from pan, place in rows in a medium baking pan (made about 3 rows in mine), along with tomatoes. Sprinkle with Mrs. Dash seasoning, drizzle with soy, cover with foil, and place in oven at 375. Bake for about 20 minutes. If you decide to add the cheese, remove from oven after 20 minutes, sprinkle cheese on top and return to oven on broil setting for approximately 2 minutes (or until cheese is melted). This dish cost about $3 to make, and fed our entire family at lunch today (in addition to our protein for the day).

I’d love to hear what some of you have done with the local produce this summer. Any fun, new recipes? Or old favorites that you’ve been making with the goodies from market or your garden?

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