Texas Living

What’s in Season? Late-Winter Edition

By Celia Bryan-Brown 2.7.18

Just because the extravagant blueberries and fresh corn of July are a distant memory doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy delicious, fresh, locally grown produce across Texas. Our state boasts one of the country’s most diverse crop ranges. This guide will help you make the most of it, by taking it straight from the farm to your breakfast, lunch, and dinner table.

farm-to-table eating

Broiled Ruby Red Grapefruit

Mouth-puckering, with a hit of citrusy sweetness, this Texas classic is at its peak through winter and into early spring. Moreover, it’s just a great way to start the day. It’s hardly worth calling a recipe, but this delicious (and healthy!) breakfast served with a dollop of yogurt will shake off the February blues and get you dreaming of spring.

1 ruby red grapefruit
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon sugar
Spoonful of yogurt 

Preheat your oven to broil. Halve a grapefruit and score the wedges. Combine the cinnamon and sugar and scatter over the cut halves. Broil for approximately five minutes, until the sugar caramelizes. Wait to cool for a couple of minutes, then serve with a spoonful of yogurt.

More grapefruit inspiration: Zingy grapefruit marmalade or tart grapefruit upside-down cake
Other seasonal fruit: This dazzling array of winter citrus

farm-to-table eating

Beet and Goat Cheese Tarte Tatin

Root vegetables rule the garden at this time of year, and beets are no exception. If you have a chance to pick some yourself, be sure not to waste the greens — they’re great sautéed with chili flakes or steamed. Earthy red beets can be a bit of an acquired taste, but there’s no way you’ll be able to resist this sweet-yet-savory twist on the classic apple tarte tatin. Serve with a peppery arugula salad.

For the tart:
1/2 cup butter
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Raw baby beets
1 pack of ready-rolled puff pastry
Crumbled goat cheese (optional)
Mint leaves (optional)

For the vinaigrette:
1 shallot, finely diced or grated
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 375 F. In a cast-iron skillet that will fit all your beets snugly in a single layer, melt butter with a drop of cooking oil. Once the butter is foaming, add apple cider vinegar and brown sugar, and mix until the sugar dissolves. Add the beets and toss to coat, then cover the pan with foil and bake in the oven for around 30 minutes, until tender.

Cut your pastry into a disk the same size as the pan, and prick all over with a fork. Remove skillet from the oven and cover your beets with the pastry like you’re tucking them in to bed. Return to the oven for 20 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown.

For the vinaigrette, combine all your ingredients in a jar and shake well to combine, then set aside.

Remove the tart from the oven and immediately turn out onto a plate. Pour the dressing over the tart and garnish with crumbled goat cheese and mint leaves, if desired.

More beet inspiration: sticky roasted beets or beet and red cabbage coleslaw
Other seasonal root vegetables: leeks, fennel, sweet potatoes, turnips, radishes

farm-to-table eating

Broccoli: Sausage Pizza

As the first hints of spring tempt us, leafy greens are coming into their own and beginning to make a stand in gardens across Texas. Locally grown broccoli has a surprisingly short season, and March marks the end of its availability, so enjoy it while you can with this fresh, seasonal spin on Friday night pizza.

2 sausages, skins removed and split into 6 meatballs
Pinch fennel seeds
1 garlic clove, crushed
Pinch chili flakes
1/4 cup ricotta
Ready-made pizza crust
1/2 ball of mozzarella, sliced
1 cup chopped broccoli
1/2 cup fennel, shredded

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Fry the sausage meatballs in a little cooking oil until nicely browned. Remove from pan to drain on a plate. Add fennel seeds, garlic, and chili flakes to the pan, then remove from the heat and scrape into a bowl with the ricotta and stir to mix.

Place your pizza crust on a baking sheet and spread over the ricotta mix, then scatter over your toppings: mozzarella, broccoli, shredded fennel, and meatballs, broken up into large crumbles. Drizzle over a little olive oil and bake for around 15 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling.

More broccoli inspiration: simply roasted broccoli or broccoli-and-cheese casserole
Other seasonal greens: cabbages, spinach, and kale

Add a bit more crunch to your fresh vegetables with these guilt-free chips you can make yourself.

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