Wednesday, August 24, 2016

August 24 or 27

This weeks' share includes:  1 bunch of carrots, 2 delicata squash, 1 pound of heirloom string beans, 1& 1/2 pounds of sweet peppers, 1 pound of torpedo onions, 2 garlic heads, 1 globe eggplant.

Storage:  Garlic and Delicata out of fridge.  All else refrigerated.

The heirloom string beans are a few different varieties.  The largest ones that are slightly flat with somewhat to very formed beans inside are Goose Beans.  The short, shiny ones are Greasy Beans.  The third, round variety is from a seed swap last fall in West Virginia and I'm ashamed to say that I have temporarily forgotten the name.  At any rate, they are all flavorful and contain more protein thanks to the formed beans within the pods.  You do need to pull the strings off of them.  Video on how to String beans
Pole beans are one of my favorite foods all year even though they require a bit more work.  Their flavor is worth it.  We would grow lots more of them if it were easier to grow them organically.  There are 2 challenges (at least!) which are that they must be trellised and that there is no organic control for Mexican Bean Beetles other than killing them by hand.  It takes time to build a trellis and once trellised, you cannot cultivate that bed with a tractor so the weeds can be prohibitive to the beans growth.  Pole beans take longer to grow and form beans than bush varieties so the bean beetles can do a lot of damage before the beans are of edible size.  Despite these challenges, we have a good enough crop this year to put them in the shares!  I hope you love them as much as we do!
There are many recipes and methods for cooking them.  We keep it simple.  I just string them, snap them in half, and put them in a skillet with an inch or so of water and a couple of onions cut in quarters, a little salt and pepper.  I let them simmer until they're soft...30 to 40 minutes and then eat.
There is a great recipe in the Root To Leaf cookbook by Steven Satterfield for "Pole Beans in Eggplant-Pepper Broth".  Its too involved for me to type out but if you're interested, look it up or let me know.  

Delicata Squash are the earliest "winter squash" ready to eat.  They are so sweet and need only be cut in half, seeds scooped out, and baked in a 4oo degree oven face down on a sheet pan until soft.  It takes about 20 to 30 minutes.  We eat them plain or with a little butter.

Sweet peppers!  Try them roasted, try them sauteed with onions, try them stuffed, try them as the main ingredient in pasta sauce, try them raw dipped into hummus or baba ganoush.
Beans just after trellising

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