Vegetable Rundown from Chef Danielle Leoni

Yields: 4-6 servings

A savory Jamaican stew often eaten at breakfast, Vegetable Rundown definitely gets everyone in the family “eating the rainbow” and trying different things. As a part of National Farm to School Month and our Blue Watermelon Project, Chef Danielle Leoni of The Breadfruit has provided this recipe as one of her favorites to encourage everyone to eat a variety of wholesome foods.

  • 1 medium eggplant (1 to 1 1/4 pounds), unpeeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 3/4 cup chopped green onions, divided
  • 3 large fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 Scotch bonnet chile or habanero chile, seeded, minced (1/2 teaspoon)
  • 1 13 1/2- to 14-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk*
  • 1 14-ounce red-skinned sweet potato (yam), peeled, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 2 carrots, peeled, coarsely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup (or more) water
  • 4 cups coarsely chopped green cabbage (from about 1/4 large head)
  • 2 cups fresh corn kernels (from 2 ears of corn) or 2 cups frozen corn kernels
  • 8 fresh okra pods, trimmed (optional)
  1. Place eggplant in colander set over bowl. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt; let stand 20 minutes. Rinse and drain.
  2. Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions, 1/2 cup green onions, thyme, garlic, allspice, and chile; sauté until onions are tender, about 8 minutes. Add coconut milk and simmer 3 minutes. Add sweet potato, carrots, bell pepper, and 1 cup water and bring to simmer. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer until vegetables are almost tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add eggplant, cabbage, corn, and okra, if desired, to vegetable mixture. Add enough water to partially cover vegetables. Cover and simmer until all vegetables are tender and mixture is thick and creamy, stirring often and adding more water by 1/4 cupfuls if liquid is too thick, about 15 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer stew to bowl; sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup green onions and serve.

White Bean Hummus from Chef Justin Beckett

Yields: 2 quarts

This is a simple recipe that can be made up to two days ahead and used throughout the week for lunches or a quick dinner. Provided by Chef Justin Beckett of Beckett’s Table and Southern Rail, hummus is originally made with all chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans) but he has used a combination in this recipe. Either way, all beans are great for protein and fiber among other nutrients, providing pure energy to sustain throughout the day. Serve with assorted raw vegetables, whole grain crackers, etc.

  • 1 cup northern white beans (Note that precooked canned beans may also be used.)
  • 1 cup garbanzo beans
  • 1 cup lima beans
  • 1/4 cup roasted garlic oil
  • 1 cup bean cooking liquid (or vegetable stock)
  • 2 teaspoons smoked sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • salt & white pepper to taste
  1. Cook and cool all the beans, making sure to reserve the cooking liquid.
  2. Place half the cooked beans in a food processor and pulse to break them apart.
  3. Slowly add in half the garlic oil, lemon juice and the bean cooking liquid.
  4. Puree until smooth.
  5. Remove bean mixture and place in mixing bowl.
  6. Repeat with second half of the beans, oil, juice and liquid.
  7. Season the bowl with the cumin, paprika, salt and pepper
  8. Chill all the way through.
  9. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Soup from Chef Aaron Chamberlin

Yields: 16 quarts

This soup is great for the fall season and can be made with a variety of seasonal squash and flavors. Served annually at Phoenix restaurants St Francis and Cafe at Phoenix Public Market, Chef Aaron Chamberlin uses seasonal ingredients to adapt it each year. He recommends it as a good dish for both a high end dinner party or even a great soup for kids to eat. Note that recipe serves a large quantity; adjustments will need to be made accordingly.

  • Soup
  • 1 pound butter
  • 1 quart leeks, large dice
  • 1 quart yellow onions, large dice
  • 12 quarts red kuri or other seasonal squash
  • 12 quarts butternut squash
  • 2T Salt
  • 1 gallon plus 3 quarts vegetable stock
  • 2 quarts heavy cream
  • Seasonings
  • 6.5 T Salt
  • 1 Tsp Tabasco
  • 4 T Maple Syrup
  • 6 T Sparkling Vinegar
  1. Sweat leeks and onions in the butter for about 10 minutes (low flame).
  2. Add the squash and vegetable stock and bring up to simmer and cook for 30 minutes.
  3. Add heavy cream and cook for an additional 15 minutes.
  4. Blend soup and pass it through a sieve to create a smooth soup.
  5. Finish it with seasonings and stir in.
  6. Garnish and serve with creme fraiche or sour cream and chopped pecans, pepita seeds, or pomegranate seeds on top.

Rustic Beet Hummus

Yields: 2.5 cups

This dish is great for parties, and is fun for kids too. They love the color and texture of the hummus, and its fun to prepare with them. Serve this dish with assorted colorful vegetables, chips or crackers, corn tortilla, cheese or walnuts. Omit horseradish as needed, substituting 1-2 teaspoons wasabi paste to taste. If traditional Balsamic is too strong, use white Balsamic, rice wine vinegar or try other vinegars like red or white by testing a smaller amount than the 2 tablespoons.

  • 1 cup chopped, baked beet (about 8 ounces raw beet, medium size)*
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked garbanzos
  • 3 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons Tree of Oil Traditional Balsamic Vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons horseradish, or more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Garnish: extra virgin olive oil, chopped flat leaf parsley
  • Condiments/sides: chips of choice, assorted colorful vegetables, bleu cheese crumbles, chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut beet into 4-6 wedges, unpeeled and completely wrap in foil. Roast 45-60 minutes until very tender when pierced with a fork. Unwrap and set aside until cool enough to handle. To easily peel baked beets: Take paper towel and rub peel off each piece whether warm or cold. Coarsely chop beet into smaller pieces.
  2. Next, put beets, garbanzo beans, tahini, lemon juice, vinegar, horseradish and salt in food processor. Puree until smooth for 2-3 minutes. Taste and adjust flavor.
  3. Transfer hummus to tray and spread to 1/3" thickness with 1" of tray's edge. Garnish with drizzle of olive oil and parsley

Four Cheese Manicotti

  • 1 (8 ounce) package manicotti shells
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 package frozen spinach, defrosted and drained
  • 3 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 cup Asiago cheese, shredded
  • 2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1 egg
  • 2 jars Costantino’s Kitchen Tomato Basil pasta sauce
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Cook pasta according to package directions; set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a small nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté 3 minutes. Remove from heat and mix in spinach; set aside. Add mozzarella cheese, Asiago cheese, ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese and egg; combine well. Stuff cooked manicotti with the mixture.
  3. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Spread about 2 cups pasta sauce over the bottom. Arrange stuffed manicotti in the dish, and cover with remaining sauce.
  4. Bake 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan, and continue baking 15 minutes, until mozzarella is melted and bubbly.