Wednesday, June 29, 2016

June 29 or July 2

Bag contents this week:
3 pounds of red, white, and blue potatoes.  1 pound of green snap beans, 1 pound of squash, 1 shintokiwa cucumber, 1 head of garlic, 1 bunch of red onions, 1 bunch of multi-color carrots.

Storage:  Garlic is still fresh and so will keep best in the refrigerator out of a bag.  If you are going to eat the carrots in a couple days, you can store them with the tops on; if not, remove the tops and use in a vegetable stock or compost them.  Everything else, refrigerate in one of your drawers.

We thought that we'd put in the potato mix in case you feel inspired to make a potato dish for the 4th of July.  The Japanese cucumbers are growing on a trellis in 1 of our hoop-houses.  All the ones I have tried are sweet and delicious, so I hope yours is too!  You have zucchini and patty pan for squash this week.  Most shares got a costata romenesca zucchini.  It is an heirloom variety of nutty flavor and dry texture.  They are our favorite squash on the farm and we hope you like them too.  There weren't enough for every box so some got dark green zucchini.  If you'd like to try the costata another time, please just ask us for one!

Roasted Carrots with Red Onion and Thyme
taken from Root to Leaf
1 bunch of baby carrots
1 small red onion, diced
3 sprigs of thyme
salt and pepper
2 T olive oil
2 T fresh parsley, chopped
juice of 1/2 lemon

Heat the oven to 400.  Trim away the taproots and tops of carrots.  Wash thoroughly. Slice the carrots in half the long way.  In a mixing bowl, combine the carrots, onion, and thyme.  Season with salt and pepper, and toss with olive oil.  Spread on a baking sheet and roast until tender and slightly caramelized, about 15 minutes.  Toss with chopped parsley and lemon juice and serve warm or cold.

You can roast potatoes with the carrots too and then make a roasted root salad...

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

June 22 or 25

Bag Contents:  1 frisee, 1 celery, 1 bunch of purple basil, 1 head of german white garlic, 1 bunch of red beets, 1 head of red cabbage, 1 pound of cucumbers, 1 bunch of torpedo onions.

Storage:  Frisee, celery, beets store in the refrigerator in a bag with the air squeezed out.  Garlic, keep in the fridge not in a plastic bag.  Cabbage, onions, cucumbers keep in fridge drawer bagged or unbagged.  Basil will keep best in a paper bag on your counter.  It will wilt a little but keep its flavor.  In the fridge, it turns slimy and doesn't last as long.

I must apologize that the cucumbers aren't the best we've ever grown.  It is very hot and VERY dry for June and I tasted some cucumbers Monday and thought they were good so we put them in the shares this week and then last night I put some in a slaw for dinner and they were pretty bitter.  Some are good and some are not.  If we hadn't already made the bags up, I wouldn't include them but it is done so we'll leave them and just not consider them valuable (so we'll compensate next week).

So, yes, the lack of rain weighs heavy on our minds.  We can irrigate and are spending an enormous amount of time moving sprinklers and starting up pumps but it is not the same as rain.  Things grow much better with rain.

We put the basil and garlic in this week thinking you might be ready to make pesto.  The dark purple basil makes a good pesto and is a different color to experience.  Torpedo onions are great for use anywhere that you need an onion.  If you like to grill, try grilling them whole with some olive oil and salt and pepper.  The celery is stronger in flavor than that which you might buy in the grocery store.  The leaves are flavorful and make a nice substitute for parsley (though you use less).  It makes great soup broth, is good in potato salad, good sauteed with onions and added to beans or lentils.

Frisee and Flageolet Bean Salad

2/3 cup dry flageolet beans (sub navy beans)
3 T extra virgin olive oil
15 anchovy fillets
juice of 1 lemon
1 large garlic clove
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 T flat leaf parsley or celery leaves!, roughly chopped
1 head of frisee, washed and broken into individual leaves

1.  Cook beans in a pot with 4 cups of water.  Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and cook until tender.  About 1 hour.  Rinse in cold water, drain, and set aside.
2.  Place olive oil, anchovies, lemon juice, garlic, and pepper in food processor.  Pulse until finely chopped.  Place parsley, frisee, beans, and anchovy dressing in a bowl and toss to combine.  Serve immediately.
if you don't eat anchovies, this is still good, you'll just need to substitute some salt and add more oil and 2 T of the cooked beans to the dressing

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

June 15 or 18

This weeks' share includes:  1 head of Early Jersey Wakefield cabbage, 1 head of summer crisp lettuce, 1 bunch of swiss chard, 1 bunch of onions, 1 fennel bulb, 3 pounds of new potatoes, 1 pound of cucumbers.

Storage:  Everything needs to be kept refrigerated.  You can use all the green part of the onions as well as the bulb.

We finally got the cloth bags!  This means that you will be given a cloth bag today that you need to bring back each week.  If you pick up at market, you will be given a box who's contents you'll transfer to the cloth bag and give us back the empty wax box.  If you pick up at Catawba, you'll be given a cloth bag already filled and just bring back the empty bag next week.

Swiss Chard Frittata (of sorts)
1 bunch of swiss chard
4 to 6 eggs
salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese

1.  Wash the chard.  Shake off excess water.  Chop the leaves and stems into ribbons.  Steam the chard and stems for a few minutes to wilt the greens.
2. Drain water from steamed chard and place in on oven proof baking dish.  I use a pie pan.
3.  Over the chard, crack whole eggs.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper to your taste.  Grate Parmesan cheese over top.
4.  Place under your broiler in the oven until the eggs are cooked to your desired done-ness.  Eat just like this or over a cooked grain or mashed new potatoes.

Fennel is good for your digestion.  Fennel is juicy and sweet.  Fennel can be eaten alone or cooked into a dish.  It is a grand addition to chicken soup.  It is delicious in risotto with peas and shallots.  It is great to gnaw on like celery.  I often make a salad using the bulb of the fennel and a little bit of the frond.  I slice the fennel thinly starting at the bottom end and ending about 6 inches up the stems of the fronds.  This I place in a bowl and squeeze the juice of 1/2 a lemon over, add salt and pepper and let sit 30 minutes.  Eat it alongside anything.  Simply delicious.  For those of you who cannot find a love for fennel, the exchange box will be a good option for you.

Early Jersey Wakefield is an heirloom cabbage variety.  It is early, tender, and delicious.  Makes great slaw ans sauerkraut.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

June 8 or 11

Box contents:  2# new red potatoes, 1 head of napa cabbage, 1 bunch of lacinato kale, 1 bunch of red beets, 1 bunch of garlic scapes, 1 bunch of red scallions, 2 zephyr and 1 patty pan summer squash.

Storage:  everything needs to be stored in the refrigerator.  Potatoes were dug yesterday and will be best eaten this week.  If you think you'll keep them longer than this week before eating, transfer them to a paper bag.
Try making a slaw with the napa cabbage or enjoy it stir fried.
Napa Cabbage Slaw Recipe form Epicurious

Bulgur Wheat and Roasted Baby Beets and Their Tops
from Root to Leaf
1 bunch of small beets with tops
1 cup bulgur
2 cups vegetable broth or water
Kosher salt
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1 shallot, diced
freshly ground black pepper
juice of 1/2 lemon
4 ounces of fresh cheese, such as chevre, crumbled
Trim the tops from the beets and reserve.  Wash the roots and roast.

Wash the tops well and separate the leaves from  the stems.  Reserve the leaves.  Slice the stems crosswise to make small dice, and set aside.

Place the bulgur in a medium bowl.  Pour the hot broth or water over the bulgur and add a pinch of salt. Cover and let sit until the grains swell and become tender, 15 to 20 minutes.  Taste for seasoning and set aside.

In a medium skillet over medium high heat, warm 1 T olive oil.  Add the shallot and beet stems and season with salt and pepper.  Cook until they are tender, 2 to 3 minutes, and add the beet greens.  Using tongs, turn the leaves several times until wilted.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Slice the roasted beets into quarters and set aside.  ( You can peel the beets if you want but the skins are very tender and full of nutrients.)

In a large bowl, mix together the cooked bulgur and sauteed vegetables and stir until combined.  Taste for seasoning.  Toss the roasted beets with the lemon juice, salt, and 1 T olive oil.
Here I deviate from the recipe.  It says to divide everything among 4 bowls and layer and top with cheese.  I combine all the parts in 1 bowl and toss together and top with cheese.

We had a much needed rain over the weekend that has everything growing well...including the weeds.  The first snap beans are starting to bloom.  The cucumbers are about to be in full swing.  There are little green tomatoes on the comes summer!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

June 1 or 4

Box contents:  1/2# spinach, 1 head of romaine, 1 bunch of kale, 1 kohlrabi, 1 green garlic, 1 bunch of scallions, 1 bunch of radishes, 1# broccoli florets.

Storage:  All will keep best in the refrigerator in bags with air squeezed out, preferably in a drawer.

We had a special guest helping us wash vegetables yesterday.  Maddy Miller, who worked with us all last season, came to visit for one day.  It was a pleasure for all of us and most for the kids!

What's for dinner this week:
sauteed spinach and green onion quesadillas
steamed kale with lemon and green garlic dressing
thinly sliced radishes and kohlrabi dipped in hummus
raw broccoli salad

RAW BROCCOLI SALAD from Smitten Kitchen
2 heads broccoli (3/4 to 1 pound each)
1/2 cup thinly sliced almonds
1/3 cup dried cranberries, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup buttermilk, well shaken
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
Lots of freshly ground pepper

Trim the broccoli, and chop it into large chunks; then cut each chunk into thin slices. Cut the stems into thin slices, then stack the slices and cut them in the other direction, into thin matchsticks.  Cut the florets vertically into thin slices, slicing them from the stem up to the floret top.  Toss the sliced broccoli with the almonds and cranberries.  In a small bowl, whisk the buttermilk, mayo, vinegar, sugar, and salt until smooth.  Stir in the onion.  Let the onion marinate for about 10 minutes in the dressing to mellow it. Pour the dressing over the broccoli mixture, and add a generous amount of black pepper.  Stir the salad until the broccoli is evenly coated wiht the dressing  Serve immediately, or keep covered in the fridge for 2 to 3 days.

Yields about 8 cups slaw, serving several people. 
Maddy, Addiebelle, and Cyril cleaning red scallions