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Complement Winter Meals With Fresh Veggies

Photos courtesy of Prairie Wind Farm

"In the winter, we mostly eat fresh eggs from our hens and produce from our stored and preserved vegetables. There’s no greater luxury than enjoying a fresh, green salad harvested from the soils of our hoophouses alongside our winter meals. We like this combination of strata and salad as a savory brunch or dinner,” says Jen Miller, of Prairie Wind Family Farm, in Grayslake. 

Gruyère and Winter Vegetable Strata

Yields: 4 to 6 servings

8 large eggs

2 cups 2% milk

2 tsp salt

1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

3 cups rustic bread, torn into 1-inch chunks

1 pound frozen produce (like a mixture of broccoli or asparagus), chopped into 1-inch pieces

4 oz gruyère cheese, grated

4 oz jack cheese, shredded

4 oz Parmesan cheese, shredded

1/2 tsp dried parsley

Whisk eggs, milk, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Mix cheeses and herbs in another bowl. Place half of bread stuffing in a large baking dish. Sprinkle with half of vegetables and half of cheese mixture.

Cover with half of egg mixture. Repeat with remaining bread, vegetables, cheese mixture and egg mixture. Cover and refrigerate for six hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375° F. Bake for about 45 minutes or until brown and puffed.

Simple Sweet & Spicy Winter Salad

Yields: 4 to 6 servings

3 cups organic salad mix, chopped if needed

3 cups arugula, chopped if needed

¼ cup red onion, sliced thin

½ cup pine nuts, toasted

Parmesan cheese (optional)


1 cup extra-virgin olive oil

3 Tbsp local maple syrup

2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 Tbsp orange juice

1 tsp Dijon mustard

1 clove garlic, minced

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Combine the dressing ingredients in a mason jar. Screw on the lid tightly and shake until the oil and vinegar have combined evenly. Place pine nuts into skillet and slowly toast on low heat until fragrant.

Combine the arugula, spinach and fresh onion in a large bowl. Pour dressing on top and toss to coat. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Add toasted pine nuts and grated parmesan cheese for extra flavor.

Recipes courtesy of Jen Miller, of Prairie Wind Family Farm, which grows a wide variety of certified organic vegetables and pasture-raised hens for eggs, and provides fresh fruit to CSA members, delivered to north and western suburban locations, and area farmers’ markets. For more information, a schedule of farm events and to sign up for the 2020 harvest, visit