With the school year in full swing, parents are stocking up on baby carrots to pack in lunches and serve as after-school snacks. That produce only has a short trip to local stores since Kern County is the nation's leader in carrot production. Grimmway Farms is one of the county's top producers not only of the ingenious baby carrots but 15 other cuts as well as a variety of other fruits and vegetables through its Cal-Organics line.
Grimmway shared some facts and recipes with us that are good for the whole family.
The company grows upwards of 40,000 acres of carrots — organic and conventional combined, with each acre producing roughly 37.5 tons of carrots. Multiple varieties of the carrot breed imperator are planted 1.5 million per acre to produce the carrots whittled down for baby carrots (as opposed to cello or table carrots, which are planted 600,000 per acre).
Looking to store your carrots? Keep them refrigerated —ideally between 32-36 F — and store away from ethylene-producing fruits (apples, avocados, bananas and citrus), which may impact the quality of the vegetables.
1 cup well-packed Grimmway Farms shredded carrots
1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
1/2 cup lemon juice, about two lemons
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup tahini
2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cumin
Place all the ingredients in food processor and pulse several times to coarsely chop.
Run the food processor for about 2 minutes until ingredients are smooth.
Using a spatula, remove hummus from food processor and transfer to serving bowl.
Serve with pita chips, celery sticks, or Grimmway Farms snack items like carrot chips and baby carrots.
1 head Cal-Organic Farms cauliflower, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. dried oregano, plus more for garnish
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried basil
4 egg whites
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
1/4 to 1/2 cup pizza sauce
4 oz. mozzarella cheese, sliced thin
1 Roma tomato, sliced thin
3-4 tbsp. green olives, pitted
1/2 tsp. capers, for garnish
Preheat oven and pizza stone (or foil-lined baking sheet) to 450 F.
Place cauliflower florets in food processor and pulse until finely chopped with no chunks.
Transfer chopped cauliflower to bowl and microwave for 6-8 minutes until cooked through.
Place the cooked cauliflower in a clean kitchen towel and squeeze out as much water as possible. Place drained cauliflower in a bowl, add shredded mozzarella cheese, Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, dried herbs, egg whites, salt, and pepper and mix well, mashing the cauliflower especially well with the back of a wooden spoon.
Spray pizza stone or baking sheet with cooking oil. Place the cauliflower pizza “dough” on the pizza stone or baking sheet and shape it into a pizza crust. Place in oven for 15-20 minutes until golden brown and crispy.
Add sauce, cheese, tomatoes, olives, and capers, then sprinkle oregano on top. Place under the broiler until cheese is melted. Serve as appetizer or pair with a salad for a healthy dinner.