Cooking with Raina: recipes with fresh produce

By Lauren Keith - bio | email

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO  (KFVS) - Below are Southeast Hospital Dietitian Raina Childer's healthy recipes for July 2010 using fresh produce from local farmer's markets. First, she offers some tips for shopping at markets.

Tips for shopping at a Farmer's Market

  • Go early or go late if possible. For the best selection, go to the market as close to opening as possible. Don't be surprised if popular items sell out before the end of the day.  If you go late, you may find the best deals. Many farmers prefer to discount their items versus packing them back up to haul home.
  • Take your time. It is a good idea to walk through the market and see all that is available that day. There may be differences in product variety, quality and pricing between farmers.
  • Ask questions. Sometimes the fresh produce doesn't "look" like the produce in the grocery store. Remember this is right out of the field, garden, etc. Producers love to talk about their products, share their knowledge and give preparation ideas. This is the place to discover new and delicious foods for your family.
  • Bring bags. Some farmers provide bags but to make sure that your heavy melons, potatoes or pecks of peaches arrive home in one piece, use canvas or nylon bags. Backpacks often work well too.
  • Bring cash. Using cash allows your sale to take place quickly and easily.
  • Buy in volume when possible. You will enjoy the best prices as well as the freshest flavors when you can buy large amounts of whatever is in season. If you are unsure of how to use it up, consider freezing, canning or drying foods to have for later use. There are also some great recipes that can be prepared in bulk and then frozen for a quick dinner later (soups and casseroles).

Red, White and Blue Potato Salad


  • 2 cups chopped white potatoes
  • 2 cups  chopped red potatoes
  • 2 cups chopped blue potatoes
  • ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  • 6 hard-cooked egg whites, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced


  • Place white and red potatoes in a large saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes until tender.
  • Place blue potatoes in a large saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 12 minutes until tender.
  • Place all cooked potatoes in a large bowl after draining. Add onion, parsley, dill, chives and egg whites to bowl; toss gently.
  • Combine vinegar and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, whisk together. Pour over potato mixture; toss gently to combine.
  • Serve warm or chilled.

Yields: 6 servings (1 cup each)

Nutrition Information: Calories: 210, Fat: 4.5 grams, Carbohydrate: 35 grams, Protein: 6.9 grams, Fiber: 3.9 grams, Sodium: 575 mg

Angel Food with Lemon Cream and Berries

  • 3- 6ounce fat free lemon yogurt containers
  • 1- 4 ounce sugar free vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 -8 ounce container of fat free whipped topping , thawed
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
  • 1-8 to 9 inch purchased angel food cake, cubed
  • In medium bowl, whisk together yogurt, ½ of the pudding mix until smooth
  • Gradually add remaining pudding mix to yogurt
  • Fold in whipped topping, blend until creamy
  • Serve lemon cream and berries over cubed cake

Yields: 16 servings

Nutrition Information: Calories: 125, Fat: 2 grams, Carbohydrate: 25 grams, Protein: 3 grams, Sodium: 269 mg, Fiber: 4 grams.

Squash Ribbons with Red Onion, Tomato and Parmesan


  • 3 medium zucchini
  • 2 medium yellow squash
  • 1 ½ teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 cup thinly vertically sliced red onion
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup sliced fresh tomatoes
  • ¼ cup fresh ground parmesan cheese
  • Using vegetable peeler, shave squash into ribbons to measure 5- 5 ½ cups. Discard seeds and core of squash
  • Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add squash, onion, and garlic; cook 5 minutes or until onion is tender, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Add salt, red pepper and black pepper, toss gently to combine.
  • Top with sliced tomatoes.
  • Sprinkle with cheese.

Yield: 4 servings

Nutrition Information: Calories: 84, Fat grams: 3.4, Carbohydrate grams: 10, Fiber grams: 3.8, Sodium mg: 266

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