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Recipes from our Backyard

With the onset of spring, flowers are blooming, fruits and vegetables are coming into season and our famous Farmers Markets are sprouting up all over the state. It seems as though at this time of year you can’t throw a stone without it landing in one of these seasonal Vermont fixtures. We thought we’d make use of the abundance of fresh local ingredients and offer up complementary recipes for a Vermont-inspired salad and soup. These recipes were donated to us by VBT Associate, Janet C. (pictured above). Now in charge of Document Services, Janet has been with the company for 27 years and she knows cooking just about as well as she knows traveling. You’re in for a treat!

For a full, locally sourced meal, enjoy our Roasted Beet Salad alongside our Green Garden Soup. Or lighten it up a bit, and enjoy each one separately.

Salad Recipe, Beet Salad

Roasted Beet Salad


  • 3 Large Beets, peeled, scrubbed with ends cut off
  • 2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • Black pepper and salt to taste
  • 1 tbsp Vermont Maple Syrup
  • 5 tbsps fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp fresh, minced parsley
  • 8 scallions, sliced
  • salt to taste
  • 2 cups mesclun (radicchio, watercress, spinach, arugula)
  • 6-8 tbsp sliced, fresh goat cheese

Cooking Directions

  1. Slice beets and arrange in a large glass baking dish. Coat with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. In a preheated 350˚ oven, roast the beets for 45 minutes or until tender. Remove from the oven to cool. Then further slice the beets and set aside.
  2. While beets are cooking, whisk together the maple syrup, lemon juice, oil, parsley, scallions and salt in a medium bowl for the dressing and set aside.
  3. Once the beets have cooled, toss them with mesclun and dressing, top with the fresh goat cheese and serve. Note: For an added garnish add 1/4 cup of chopped pecans.

Soup Recipes, Soup Recipe, Garden Soup, Soup Greens

Green Garden Soup


  • 2 tsps olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion diced
  • 1 leek, scrubbed and sliced fine
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 carrot, peeled and diced
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 2 tsps paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 large Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed, diced & soaked in cold water
  • 2 medium green zucchinis, trimmed and diced
  • 10 cups organic low sodium vegetable stock
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme or rosemary
  • 1 hot pepper, whole (habanero or red chili)
  • 6 cups greens (mix of kale, collards and Swiss chard) finely sliced
  • 2 cups (tightly packed) fresh spinach
  • 1 tsp maple syrup (optional)
  • 1 tbsp plain yogurt
  • 1 tbsp green onion, sliced
  • Juice of half of a lemon and half of a lime (or more to taste)

Cooking Directions

  1. In a large soup pot (6-8 qts), heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, leek, garlic, carrot and celery and stir well. Reduce heat to medium and sweat vegetables for 2-3 minutes. Add paprika and cumin, stirring constantly until vegetables are coated with spices. Continue to cook for 3-4 more minutes.
  2. Add potatoes and zucchini and stir, sautéing for 1-2 minutes. Add stock, herb sprig and hot pepper, allowing pepper to float in broth. Bring mixture to a boil. Then, reduce heat to med-low and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Add greens to pot and stir carefully to submerge greens completely in broth. If additional liquid is required, add a bit more stock or water. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil again. After reaching a boil, reduce heat to simmer and cook for 5-8 minutes.
  4. Remove soup from heat. Remove hot pepper from broth and remove herb sprig stems. Add spinach and stir until immersed in the broth. Using a hand blender, puree the soup in the pot. Be careful of splashing hot soup or wait until soup cools down a bit and puree in blender or food processor. Add lemon/lime juice, salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Garnish each bowl with yogurt and green onion. Serve immediately.