Asparagus & Meyer Lemon Risotto

Every few days I step outside and think it must be spring. The earth must think the same thing because early spring varieties like Meyer Lemon, Asparagus and Artichokes are already being harvested. I have been working in organic agriculture now for over fifteen years and I have never seen these things peaking so early. It’s a nice surprise after last winter!

Love, love, love this combination! Risotto is traditionally made using a starchy short grain rice such as Aroborio, Carnaroli, Vialone, Nano, and Baldoroborio, Carnaroli, Vialone, Nano, and Baldo. Years ago I had a great source for bulk Aroborio and tried every Risotto recipe I could get my hands on or mind around. Then rice prices dramatically increased and that resource didn’t make much sense for the quantity we use. Since then these varieties seem more difficult to find especially if you are looking for Organic Grown. I have frequently substituted different rice options such as the Basmati White Rice and our favorite Pearled Farro. These options yield a less creamy result, but still provide a delicious whole food dish brimming with nutrients.

If you choose to substitute another grain you may need to add more water. Arborio absorbs less water than most grains. The parmesan cheese at the end is optional, but I always include it. My favorite is the ParmRomano by our own local Ballard Cheese. You can find all of the ingredients for this recipe on our web site excluding the salt and pepper.       Meyer Lemon Large Image 2

Asparagus & Meyer Lemon Risotto

Asparagus: Heat oven to 425 degrees. Place the butter in a large baking sheet. Trim Asparagus and add to pan. Thinly slice the Meyer Lemon and add to pan. Toss to coat with oil/butter mixture. Spread evenly in pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Roast until slightly softened, 5-15 minutes depending on thickness of asparagus stalk.

Risotto: Heat a large saucepan over medium high heat, add the olive oil, then the shallots, and cook stirring until translucent. Add the rice and stir until the grains turn white or about four minutes. Add the stock and stir frequently until absorbed. Add the asparagus to the risotto. Continue to cook a few minutes until risotto is well moistened but rice is al-dente. Add lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Serve with parmesan cheese if desired.                                                                


Rachel for Brown Box

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Know Your Produce? Meyer Lemons

When I first started working with fresh seasonal produce in 2002 I remember thinking, “Meyer Lemons. What’s the big deal?” I LOVE lemon flavor. Lemon is one of my favorite go to items to add serious flavor and not compromising great nutrition. I just couldn’t get my mind around a lemon being any better. The first season I sampled Meyer Lemons it was love at first bite!

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All About Meyer Lemons

Meyer Lemons have been cultivated for thousands of years. They are native to China and are thought to have been a cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange. Meyer Lemons first made their way to the United States in 1908. They derived their western name from the agricultural explorer that brought them to the United States, Frank Nicholas Meyer.

Meyer Lemons are slightly sweeter and less acidic than other lemons. They also have a much thinner rind that is edible. A Meyer Lemon will usually yield more juice than a traditional lemon. While traditional lemons are available year round the Meyer Lemon has a short season. Be sure to stock up and enjoy while they are available!

The uses for Meyer Lemons is endless. These sweet tart citrus fruits are perfect for desserts, stuffing for chicken, or making simple sweet Meyer lemonade. Here are a few of my other favorite ways to use Meyer Lemons:

  • Risotto featuring Meyer Lemon Juice
  • Sliced in salad or in salad dressings such as Lemon Shallot Vinaigrette every kind of recipe for baked goods.
  • In Spring Recipes featuring Lemons such as Spring Asparagus Risotto.
  • Squeezed over vegetables to be roasted, poultry or fish.
  • Zested and juiced into muffins and other delicious baked goods.
  • Blended into smoothies like Kale Lemonade.
  • In Tea – especially Ginger Root & Lemon Tea
  • In the place of Lemon in all kinds of my favorite recipes. You can find all these and more on our recipe blog:

As you might expect Meyer Lemons are very nutritious. They provide Vitamin C and other powerful nutrients. My favorite health benefit of Meyer Lemons is what they do not include. Meyer Lemons have no fat and are low in calories, but adds enormous flavor. Great flavor and healthy do go together and using some key ingredients like Lemons, especially Meyer Lemons when in season and fresh herbs make eating REAL.GOOD.FOOD. fun and easy.


Rachel Brown

For the Brown Box Team

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BOGO Blueberries and More

We are especially excited about Organic Blueberries right about now. These sweet little berries are a favorite year round, but in January we especially love the burst of flavor, color and nutrients they provide our bodies as we begin a new year.

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Blueberries are Bursting with Body Benefits! Buy 1 Get 1 Free

Did you know that BLUEBERRIES are a fantastic SUPERFOOD packed with antioxidants and ranked #1 in the world of antioxidants? Here are just some of their BENEFITS:

  • Delay Aging
  • Improve Brain Function
  • Promote Digestion
  • Treat Urinary Tract Infections
  • Aid in Cancer Prevention
  • Promote Eye Health
  • Dissolve ‘Bad Cholesterol’
  • Aid in Strengthen Cardiac Muscles
  • Boost Immunity

These deliciously versatile little berries contain anthocyanin, selenium, vitamins A, C, E, vitamin B complex, zinc, sodium, potassium, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, and manganese- ALL of which contribute to a HEALTHY BODY!

Buy 1 Get 1 FREE BLUEBERRIES!!  Just mention this e-mail when you place ANY order*
*For orders delivered by January 31, 2018. One per household. For email recipient only.
Items must be added as ala carte outside the Variety Box. One per customer per delivery.

We LOVE to hear from you. Contact us anytime:  (208) 461-9750 or by email



Copied from Box Flier Insert dated 1/16/2018.

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Wishing YOU Happy & Healthy 2018!

Welcome to a New Year! We hope that 2018 is a year filled with good things foBrown Box Logor you and yours. We love that you choose us to be a part of your life! If we were going to pick a word for this year it would be “YOU” because without YOU Brown Box simply isn’t possible. When you choose to shop with Brown Box we hope you find great values, time saved and life simplified. We also hope YOU enjoy delicious REAL.GOOD.FOOD. that benefits your health and improves your journey. We know you have many options for shopping and your commitment to shop with our local small business makes a huge impact on this community. Let’s make 2018 the best year yet together!

Here are a few tips for making the most of your Brown Box:

  • Remember to return your boxes for reuse. We LOVE that there is so little waste with Brown Box. We only bag items that really need it and saved over 165,000 plastic bags compared to traditional grocery last year. The plastic liner in your box can be used in any standard size kitchen waste bin. (We cannot accept plastic returns by USDA health standards.)
  • Follow us on Instagram & Facebook. Post pictures of things you make or items you especially love and tag us. We love to hear from you and are working on some fun Giveaways this year!
  • Add items you would like to receive regularly to your standing order. The further in advance we communicate with the farms and food artisans the easier it is to fulfill orders.
  • Have a problem with an item or any concern? We LOVE to hear from you. Contact us anytime:

(208) 461-9750 or by email

Copied from our box insert flier for the week of January 7, 2018.

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