CSA Newsletter 2009

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 20


Welcome to the last week of CSA for this season. I just want all of you to know what joy it has been to be your farmer. It has been a blessing to grow your vegetables and to share with you their deliciousness, health and beauty every week. We hope that you’ve enjoyed eating them. Thank you for sharing in our successes and failures this year, for supporting local food and community. We hope to have you join us again next season. If not, we wish you luck in all your endeavors and we hope that you continue to support local farmers by buying local meats, veggies and other products from farm-stands, farmers’ markets or buying groups. 

We would like to try and give out any remaining veggies that are still left in the field on the Saturday before Thanksgiving. I will send out an email detailing what I still have left. It may not be a whole lot, but it will be some things to share at your Thanksgiving tables.

Pick up a brochure for our Meat CSA. We will have other products available for sale during pick-ups, so even if you don’t join the Meat CSA, keep in mind that on the first and third Saturdays of every month, we will be open for business with our meats, eggs, maple syrup and jams, as well as fresh baked breads from Clovertown Bakers, Frost Hollow goat cheeses and Sidehill Farm Yogurts. Come on by the house (the freezers can’t stay in the sugar house over the winter, so we’ll have everything at the big red house in the back.

                                       

 

What’s in your share (maybe)

Baby Bok Choi

Yellow Onions

Chinese Cabbage

Scallions

Winter Squashes- Godiva Pumpkins

Lettuce Mix

Parsnips

Potatoes

Storage Cabbage

Kales

Brussel Sprouts

Rutabagas

Celeriac

 

Pick Your Own

That’s a wrap

 

Vegetable of the Week: Godiva Pumpkin

These lovely decorative pumpkins not only look wonderful on your fall table, but they also harbor a delicious snack. The seeds of these beauties are hull-less, meaning they don’t have the tough outer shell that the seeds of pumpkins usually have. Instead they are a soft green, ready for roasting with a little tamari/soy sauce or plain salt. Pumpkin seeds are high in protein and many other nutritious vitamins and minerals such as zinc and Omega-3’s best known for lowering cholesterol and promoting prostate health.

Try this lovely fall holiday treat (thanks to Kristen Laney for the idea). Line a mini-muffin tin with paper liners. Melt some good dark chocolate chunks or chips in a double boiler. In the bottom of each liner place some roasted pumpkin seeds and a couple of dried cranberries. Spoon the chocolate over the top and tap the bottom of the tray on the counter to settle the chocolate a little. You can sprinkle a little specialty gray salt, chili powder or cinnamon on the top if you like a little adventure. Put in the refrigerator and cool until solid, about an hour. Enjoy.

 

 

 

Recipes of the Week: Sage-Roasted Fall Vegetable Salad

Adapted from Serving up the Harvest

Ingredients: Salad

1 cup wild rice

3 cups water

1 tsp salt

12 cups of peeled (opt) and diced fall veggies such as winter squash, carrots, beets, rutabagas, turnips, parsnips and/or celeriac)

1 onion, diced

1 Tbsp fresh sage, chopped

3 Tbsp olive oil

Fresh ground pepper

 

Cranberry Viniagrette

2 shallots, chopped

1 cup cranberry sauce/jam

2 Tbsp fruited vinegar or red wine vinegar

2 Tbsp fresh orange juice

¾ cup walnut or olive oil

Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

 

Directions:

Combine the wild rice, water and salt in a small saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the rice is tender and most of the grains have burst open 40-60 min. Let cool.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 450. Lightly grease a shallow roasting pan with oil.

Combine the diced fall veggies, onion and sage in a large bowl. Add the oil and loss gently to coat. Transfer to the roasting pan and arrange in a single layer. Roast for 30-40 min stirring occasionally, until the veggies are tender and lightly browned.

To make the vinaigrette, finely chop the shallots in a blender. Add the cranberry sauce, vinegar, orange juice and oil and process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

Combine the roasted veggies and vinaigrette in a large bowl. Toss gently to mix. Taste and add salt and pepper if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Pumpkin Seed Mole
Adapted from a Rick Bayless recipe, to be less spicy (you know, for kids).
1 cup of hulled pumpkin seeds, plus a few more for shaking on
1/2 large white onion, cut into chunks
3 garlic cloves, peeled
1/4 cup fresh cilantro (leaves only, loosely packed), plus more for garnish
3 leaves romaine lettuce
1/2 serrano pepper, without seeds
3 1/2 cups chicken or veggie broth
1 tablespoon canola oil
salt

Toast the pumpkin seeds in a large frying pan over medium heat. stir them frequently, so they don’t burn. You’ll hear the pumpkin seeds begin to pop. You’ll know you’re done toasting once all the pumpkin seeds have popped (from flat to rounded). The whole process should take about 5-7 minutes. Allow the pumpkin seeds to cool completely, on a clean kitchen towel.

Once the pumpkin seeds have cooled, put them in a blender along with the onion chunks, garlic, cilantro, romaine, serrano pepper, and 1 1/4 cups of the broth. Puree until smooth. Heat the oil in a saucepan, then add the puree, and cook over medium heat. You’ll need to stir it constantly so it doesn’t burn. After 10 minutes or so, it should be pretty thick, so stir in 2 more cups of broth. Then turn down the heat, and allow it to simmer, partially covered, for 20 minutes. Then allow it to cool.

When it’s cooled down, scrape the mole back into the blender, add a pinch of salt, and the remaining 1/4 cup of broth. Puree until nice and creamy. Rinse your saucepan out, then return the mole to the saucepan, and reheat (but don’t boil) before serving. Serve the mole on top of whatever you’re having, and garnish with cilantro and pumpkin seeds. Then rock on with your bad self.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 19


Hello all, this is Ian and Jan writing.  We wanted to take this opportunity to say how much we have enjoyed caring for your vegetables.  We hope you know that every day we spent in the fields this season we were working with you in mind, imagining how excited you would be for each lovely new item.  So, thank you for all your enthusiasm, especially to those with whom we worked side by side. And, of course, thank you to Desiree and John, who believed in us and gave us a real place to try out our ideas and the confidence to know that being  farmers does not have to be a far off dream.

 

So, that said, we are drawing toward the close of CSA.  This was originally slated to be the last week, but we’ve added a bonus pickup, so don’t forget to come on your regular day next week the 20th, 22nd, or 24th.   Things just look too good out there in the fields to quit. We are also planning on having a pre-thanksgiving pickup for everyone on November 21st, regardless of your pickup day. 

 

Brochures are out on the table for our new Meat CSA, starting the first of November. If you like our meats, or have thought about trying them, now is the time to sign up. You can choose how many times per month you pick-up and how much each time. It is also a pay at pick-up, so you don’t owe us for the whole season up front. We will also provide you with information and recipes about how to cook grass-fed and pastured meats to bring out their incredible health benefits and flavor.

 

                                            

 

What’s in your share (maybe)

Baby Bok Choi

Yellow Onions

Chinese Cabbage

Mustard greens (baby)

Scallions

Salad Turnips

Winter Squashes

Lettuce Mix

Carrots

Broccoli

Potatoes

 

Pick Your Own

That’s a wrap

 

Recipes of the Week:

From Serving up the Harvest by Andrea Chesman and Morning Glory Farm by Tom Dunlop

Chicken and Leek Pot Pie

5 split chicken breasts (about 4 lbs)

6-8 cups water, or to cover

1 onion, quartered

2 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole

1 bunch parsley

1 teaspoon black peppercorns

2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced

6 tablespoons olive oil

4 medium leeks, sliced

6 tablespoons unbleached all purpose flour

1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill

Biscuit topping:

3 cups unbleached all purpose flour

2 tablespoons baking powder

1 ½ teaspoon salt

2/3 cup butter, cut into pieces

1 cup buttermilk

 

1. Place the chicken in a large pot.  Cover with the water.  Add onion, garlic, parsley, and peppercorns.  Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to maintain a slow simmer for 35 minutes,  until the chicken is tender and no longer pink.  Turn off heat and allow the chicken to cool in the cooking liquid.

 

2. Cover the potatoes with salted water in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil and boil until just tender, 5-8 minutes, drain.

 

3. When chicken is cool enough to handle, remove the chicken from the broth. Discard the skin and bones. Chop the meat into bit sized pieces.

 

4. Strain the broth and discard the solids. Skim off any fat that rises to the top.  Reserve 3 cups broth for the potpie and refrigerate or freeze the excess for other recipes.

 

5. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Sauté the leeks in the oil until tender, about 5 minutes.  Sprinkle in the flour and stir until all four is absorbed in the oil.  Whisk in the 3 cups broth and stir until thickened and smooth.  Stir in the chicken, potatoes, and dill.  Season with salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil.  Keep hot while you prepare the biscuits.

 

6. Preheat the oven to 450 F.  Set out and ungreased 9×13 inch baking pan.

 

7. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and butter in a food processor and process until baking mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Pour in the buttermilk and process to make soft dough.  Knead a few times on a lightly floured board.  Pat out the dough to a thickness of about ½ inch.  Cut into 3 inch rounds.  By gathering scraps and patting out again, you should get 12 biscuits.

 

8. Pour the chicken mixture into the baking pan.  Place the biscuit rounds on top.  Bake for 18 minutes, until biscuits are golden and the chicken mixture is bubbling.

 

9. Let stand a few minutes before serving.

 

 

 

           Korean Salad

3 heads bok choi

½ cup sunflower seeds

½ cup almonds

¼ melted butter

3 pkgs ramen noodles, crumbled

Dressing:

3 tbsp soy sauce

¼ cup vinegar

½ cup sugar

½ cup oil

 

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees

 

2. Chop and set aside bok choi

 

3. Combine sunflower seeds, almonds, melted butter and noodles, and toast in oven until golden, stirring often, about 10 minutes. Let cool

 

4. Prepare dressing by combining all ingredients in a large bowl. Add bok choi and nut mixture just before serving. 

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 18


We have couple of weeks left! We’ve been out looking at the fields and thinking about distributions and we’re thinking that we are definitely going to go straight through for another two weeks (so Oct 20, 22 and 24th) and then we’ll see how the produce is faring and either skip a week or hold out until the Saturday before Thanksgiving and do a mass distribution of everything left on the 21st of November. That’s our hope anyway, we’ll keep you posted on the details….

You may have noticed that we are trialing a few new products in the last couple weeks. These are things that members have asked us to try and find and they seem to be very popular. Frost Hollow Farm’s raw milk goat cheese was a real hit and we hope to have more shortly and every week next season. We also are thrilled to offer Clovertown Breads this week- these are truly delicious breads (we had some for lunch!). We’ll have some samples out to try. Take home some of this amazing bread, baked fresh this morning!

Brochures are out on the table for our new Meat CSA, starting the first of November. If you like our meats, or have thought about trying them, now is the time to sign up. You can choose how many times per month you pick-up and how much each time. It is also a pay at pick-up, so you don’t owe us for the whole season up front. We will also provide you with information and recipes about how to cook grass-fed and pastured meats to bring out their incredible health benefits and flavor.

 

                                            

 

What’s in your share (maybe)

Baby Bok Choi

Red & Yellow Onions

Cabbage

Mustard greens (baby)

Scallions

Beets

Brussel Sprouts

Salad Turnips

Winter Squashes

Lettuce

Spinach

 

Pick Your Own

Flowers are open; you may take a nice bouquet.

Herbs are open. Look in both the Garden PYO field or in the Perennials.

 

Recipe of the Week:

Thanks to Marilyn Hickey for sending us this delicious sounding recipe. Perfect for warming up the whole house on these chilly autumn days.

Black Bean Chili w/winter squash

       1  tablespoon  olive oil

       1  large chopped onion (1 1/2 cups)

       1  medium diced yellow bell pepper (1 cup)

       3  garlic cloves, minced

       2  (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained

       2  cups  fat-free, less-sodium vegetable broth

       1  (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained

       1  (4.5-ounce) can chopped mild green chiles

       1  teaspoon  chili powder

       1/4  teaspoon  chipotle chile powder

       1/2  teaspoon  dried oregano

       1  medium winter squash (about 2 pounds)

       1/4  teaspoon  salt

. 1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper, and cook, stirring frequently, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Stir in beans, broth, tomatoes, green chiles, chili powder, chipotle chile powder, and oregano. Simmer, covered, 10 minutes. Uncover and cook 10 more minutes.

2. Cut squash in half lengthwise, scoop out and discard seeds, pierce with a fork a few times, and put in a microwave-safe dish with 1/4 inch water. Cover with plastic wrap; microwave on HIGH 8 minutes or until tender. Let cool; peel with a small sharp knife, and cut into 1/2-inch chunks. Stir squash into bean mixture; cook 5 minutes. Stir in salt. Serve warm.

 

I also wanted to share with all of you a couple of little tips for preserving some of the delicious food that you are bringing home- that way you can continue to enjoy them through the winter.

First- Freezing is the easiest and safest method of preservation. Almost all the greens except the lettuces can be lightly steamed or blanched until just wilted and then tossed into a freezer bag. When you want to use it, simply thaw in microwave or on the counter and then toss into sauces, stews and soups.

Brussel sprouts also freeze really well. Steam them lightly for no more than 30 seconds and toss them into a freezer bag and into the freezer. They will be just as delicious in January.

Second- some of these lovely winter squashes, onions and potatoes that we’re sending home are ‘cured’ which means they will last practically all winter if you keep them in the right conditions. Onions and potatoes both like it cool and dark. Beets will hang out in the humid drawer of your refrigerator for months (literally, almost all winter) and so will carrots. Make sure you cut their tops off.

Winter squashes actually store best right on your counter. Some of them taste best after they’ve sat for a while. Butternuts and Buttercups really shouldn’t be opened until after the Winter Holidays (they will be like candy if you wait). The spaghetti’s, delicata’s, and other acorn types are fine now, will be better at Thanksgiving. If you are unsure which is which, let us know and we’ll let you know. They really do like sitting on your counter, so use them as beautiful centerpieces and then eat them in midwinter for a special treat.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 17


This is the recipe issue of the newsletter! It will contain a few basic recipes that we love and may have already had in previous issues but deserve a revitalization because we have a return of many vegetables this week that we had earlier in the summer.

What’s in your share (maybe)

Swiss chard

Baby Bok Choi

Red & Yellow Onions

Cabbage

Lettuce mix

Arugula

Potatoes

Carrots

Brussel Sprouts

Chinese cabbage

Salad Turnips

Winter Squash

 

Pick Your Own

Flowers are open; you may take a nice bouquet.

Herbs are open. Look in both the Garden PYO field or in the Perennials.

 

Recipes of the Week:

Pasta with Arugula Pesto

Okay, so this week the recipe is incongruous with the veggie of the week, but salad turnips are easy and details of what to do with them are above. We love this pesto recipe- and you can substitute mixed mustard greens, turnip greens and so on.

8 cups arugula leaves

½ cup pine nuts, walnuts or cashews

2 garlic cloves

½ cup olive oil

½ cup freshly grated Parmesan

8 sun-dried tomatoes, softened and minced (opt)

1 lb vermicelli

Salt and fresh ground pepper

½ cup pitted cured black olives (opt)

 

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the arugula and blanch until just wilted, about 30 seconds. Remove the arugula with tongs and transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Let cool and then drain. Keep the water in the pot hot for the pasta. Squeeze out as much moisture from the arugula as possible.

Chop nuts and garlic in food processor, add the arugula and process until finely chopped. Add the oil, cheese and process until a thick paste. Transfer to a bowl and stir in tomatoes and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Return water to a boil and add pasta. Cook until al dente. Reserve ½ cup pasta water and drain pasta.

Transfer pasta to a serving bowl. Mix the arugula pesto to the pasta, using the reserve pasta water to add moisture if needed. Serve immediately with extra parmesan cheese.

 

Farmer’s Favorite Brussel Sprouts

Since I had to tell a lot of folks how to cook Brussels last week, I thought I would share with you all how we cook them in our house.

1 stalk of sprouts

½ lb bacon

1 small red onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

Generous amount of Parmesan cheese

Optional: dried cranberries and/or toasted pecans

Directions: So, de-sprout your stalk and clean up the sprouts. Then segregate them by size and either cook separately or cut the bigger ones into halves and quarters to match the smaller sized. Throw them in a steamer for a few minutes until they are bright, bright green and set aside. Toss bacon into a large, hot cast iron skillet and cook until done. Remove the bacon and pour off some of the fat, leaving a semi-generous amount in the pan. Turn down the heat and add the onion and sauté until soft, toss in the Brussels and garlic. Saute until Brussels are tender (you can add a little bit of water to the pan if they don’t seem to be getting there). Remove to a large bowl and toss with Parmesan, crumbled bacon and optional cranberries and pecans. This is a lovely festive side dish or you can toss it all with your favorite pasta for a delicious main dish.

 

Korean Cabbage Kimchee by Linda Ziedrich author of The Joy of Pickling

The favorite kimchee vegetable is Chinese (or Napa) cabbage. The Koreans ferment it in enormous quantities. They then pack the kimchee into huge earthenware jars, bury the jars in the ground up to the neck, and cover the lids with straw until the kimchee is needed. Kimchee almost always includes hot pepper, usually dried and either ground or crushed into flakes. Because the ground dried hot pepper sold in Korean markets is generally fairly mild, Koreans can use generous quantities. Some of the Mexican (and New Mexican) ground peppers now sold in supermarkets are comparable. If you can’t find ground pepper with a moderate heat level, you might combine sweet paprika and cayenne to suit your taste.

Makes about 1 1/2 Quarts

Ingredients:

3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon pickling salt

6 cups water
2 pounds Chinese (Napa) cabbage, cut into 2-inch squares
6 scallions, cut into 2-inch lengths, then slivered
1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoons Korean ground dried hot pepper (or other mildly hot ground red pepper)
1 teaspoon sugar

Instructions:

1. Dissolve the 3 tablespoons salt in the water. Put the cabbage into a large bowl, a crock, or a nonreactive pot, and pour the brine over it. Weight the cabbage down with a plate. Let the cabbage stand for 12 hours.

2. Drain the cabbage, reserving the brine. Mix the cabbage with the remaining ingredients, including the 1 teaspoon salt. Pack the mixture into a 2-quart jar. Pour enough of the reserved brine over the cabbage to cover it. Push a freezer bag into the mouth of the jar, and pour the remaining brine into the bag. Seal the bag. Let the kimchi ferment in a cool place, at a temperature no higher than 68° F, for 3 to 6 days,until the kimchi is as sour as you like.

3. Remove the brine bag, and cap the jar tightly. Store the kimchi in the refrigerator, where it will keep for months.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 16


So the Potatoes are in…..sorry for any confusion on the days. We did end up digging them on Saturday after all. There were not as many as last year, so with some volunteer help it all went smoothly. We also got our first frost over the weekend, it was fairly light, but it was enough to wipe out the basil and all the squash plants both in the field across the street and down on the floodplain (where the frost clearly pooled and was much heavier). So we got the winter squash and rest of the dry beans in yesterday. We usually make that into a lovely harvest day with lots of folks, but in all honesty- it was not ideal growing conditions for squashes this season, so the winter squash harvest was relatively light compared to other years. Greens and roots will still hang out through many frosts, and actually get better as they love the cool weather. Carrots and beets will start to get sweeter as they start to pull sugars out of their dying leaves and store them in their roots. Brussel sprouts will also be sweeter after a frost- the jury is still out on whether we’ve had enough of a frost to make them really sweet yet or not, but we wanted to get them out to you since we only have four weeks left of CSA…..

 

                                            


What’s in your share (maybe)

Swiss Chard

Baby Bok choi

Red & Yellow Onions

Cabbage

Beets

Lettuce mix

Mustard mix

Potatoes

Spaghetti squash

Leeks

 

Pick Your Own

Green Beans are done

Flowers are open, you may take a nice bouquet.

Basils are mostly done, you may still find some thai or lemon, but no Sweet.

Herbs are open. Look in both the Garden PYO field or in the Perennials.

Featured vegetable–: Spaghetti Squash

In the event that you haven’t ever had the opportunity to try one of these squashes. Well, I hope that it wasn’t a terrible experience. You see, most of the time, I have noticed that spaghetti squashes that are sold in the store are not fully ripened. So I would encourage you to give them another try. Ours should be a little sweeter and have a more nutty flavor than the bland ones that I’ve encountered. We have two varieties this year. One looks a lot like those usually found in the store, a yellowish, elongated oval. This is the standard and should actually be a nice golden yellow, not pasty.

The other variety looks nothing like what I expected, it was supposed to be a miniature version (since a lot of you love single serving sizes), but it appears to be a lot deeper in color. I would let it color up completely before cooking to let the sugars fully develop. As for cooking, it is my opinion that the flavor is best accentuated by baking in the oven rather than boiling. Then you just scrape the squash out of the rind with a fork and serve with your favorite sauce. While it takes a little longer to cook, it is a great wheat-free alternative to pasta.

 

 

 

Recipe of the Week:

 

Spaghetti Squash with Pine Nuts and Sage
I found this recipe on Mothering.com and it just sounded so delicious that I couldn’t resist. I haven’t had a chance to try it yet so let me know what you think. This recipe is for one of the larger variety spaghetti’s so ½ it for the smaller ones or cook 2.
Ingredients: 

1 spaghetti squash

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

1/4 cup grated pecorino romano cheese

2 tablespoons fresh sage, chopped

2 teaspoons butter, melted

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut the spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise, and seed it. Place the squash cut side down in a baking dish. Bake for 50 minutes. Scrape the stringy flesh from the squash rind with a fork. In a medium-size bowl, combine the squash, pine nuts, cheese, sage, butter, salt, and pepper. Serve immediately.

Mediterranean Spaghetti Squash

  • 1 spaghetti squash
  • 1 leek
  • 4 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch dice
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1-3/4 cups chicken broth (1 can or homemade)
  • 2 large boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 4 fresh sage leaves, chopped
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 roma tomatoes, chopped into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1/2 cup black olive wedges
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
  • Chopped parsley for garnish

Preparation:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Preheat oven to 375 F. Prick spaghetti squash all over with a skewer. Place spaghetti squash in a pan and bake for 1 hour. When cool enough to handle, cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise with a serrated knife. Scoop out the seeds, then shred pulp into spaghetti-like strands. Keep warm.

Cut leek in half lengthwise and rinse thoroughly in a sink full of water, making sure to remove all dirt. Drain and cut leek into strips about 3 inches long and 1/2 inch wide, including 2 inches of the green part and the center tender leaves.

Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Gently saute the bacon and leeks, stirring often, until leeks begin to brown and carmelize. Add garlic and cook 1 minute. Stir in flour and cook 2 minutes. Carefully pour in wine. Stir and cook 2 minutes, then add chicken broth. Bring to a simmer. Add chicken, thyme, sage, salt, pepper, and cream. Gently simmer until chicken is cooked through and sauce thickens, about 5 to 8 minutes. Add tomatoes, black olives, and Parmesan cheese and cook only until heated through.

Serve over cooked spaghetti squash and sprinkle with chopped parsley.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 15


Well, we cancelled the potato harvest last Saturday since the fields were too muddy for our fancy digger, but we’re going to aim for trying again this coming Saturday afternoon, if it rains we’ll try for Sunday this time (if it is raining- don’t come). Time is 2-4p and you’ll just be helping us pick up the taters and pack them into bags. As Autumn rolls in towards us we will start having more storage crops available and less of the summery vegetables. We will provide you with instructions on how to care for them so that they last well into the winter. Look for this in the next few weeks as we start to give out these tasty New England favorites. We are starting to put sections of the fields to ‘bed’ by seeding cover crops, tilling in plant residues from gone by plantings, and adding compost. We are still weeding however, so if you have a little spare time, it would be nice to get some beds really clean so that we can seed some cover crops underneath the veggies.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Kales

Swiss Chard

Baby Bok choi

Summer Squash & Zucchini

Onions

Cabbage

Beets

Garlic

Lettuce

Carrots

Mustard mix

Potatoes

Pick Your Own

Green Beans are going by quickly.

Flowers are open, you may take a nice bouquet.

Basils are looking pretty sad. Next season I will do a second planting and see if we can’t extend that a little longer into the fall.

Herbs are open. Look in both the Garden PYO field or in the Perennials.

Featured vegetable–: Returning Favorites

We just wanted to bring to your attention that we will shortly have a return of some favorites of the early summer vegetables that so many of you enjoyed (sometimes for the first time!). We will start by giving out delicious baby Bok Choi- you can cook these whole- we made them for lunch by simmering them in chicken broth and coconut milk with a little thai curry paste (red, green or roasted red- try the last if you don’t want it too spicy) which you can find in your local grocery store. We also have our mustard green mix again- only this time it will be very very mild. Even if you found it incredibly spicy in the early summer, the cool fall nights mellow out mustard greens. Eat them raw in salads or on sandwiches or grind into a pesto with garlic, nuts and parmesan cheese. In the coming weeks look for those amazing salad turnips and tender spinach as well, we know how much you all love them.

Recipe of the Week: Angry Red Planet
thank you to Caity Delphia for this delicious recipe

Angry Red Planet could also be called beet stew (not beef stew). This stew is simple, delicious, nutritious and very satisfying. Even those who don’t like beets enjoy this meal.

The name comes from the red color that this rich, hearty, vegetable stew turns as it simmers.

1/3 of your “portion” is short grain brown rice. So if you’re eating 2 cups of food, you’ll serve yourself 2/3 cup of rice and then top it with 1 1/3 cups of ARP.

Remember an average portion as a main course is 2 cups per person. For us, it is a meal unto itself.

Ingredients
4 Servings
Cooked Brown Rice 1 1/3 cups
Beets 1 cup quartered then sliced in ¼” slices
Potatoes 1 1/3 cups quartered and ¼” sliced
Carrots 2/3 cup¼” sliced
Onions 2/3 cup cut into ½” cubes
Spanish Peanuts (unsalted) 1/2 cup
Sharp Cheddar Cheese 2/3 cup¼” cubes

Brown rice can be prepared in advance, or start cooking it right away. It will take just as long to cook as preparing and cooking the rest of the meal.

Rice:water = 1:2

To yield 2 cups, boil 2 cups water. When the water comes to a boil, add 1 cup rice.Turn the heat to low and simmer for 45-50 min.
Then start preparing the stew. Coat a frying pan, at medium heat, with safflower oil to cook the beets.
Beets are cooked on medium to medium high heat for 5-10 minutes depending on how fresh they are. (5 minutes for fresh beets, 10 for stored beets.)
While they cook you can cut up the potatoes, carrots and onions.

Add the potatoes, carrots and onions and brown for another 6 minutes.
Then add water until the veggies are completely covered. It’s a lot of water as this is a stew. Bring to a boil, then simmer until all veggies are soft (25-35 min.) Add water as needed until the veggies are soft and there is still plenty of thick hot liquid. It is a lot like a volcano, bubbling and boiling.

While the veggies are simmering, roast the peanuts in a frying pan with a small amount of oil. When they are a rich, golden brown, turn off the heat and add a few good dashes of tamari (soy sauce) and cover the pan with a lid to prevent splashing. This will coat the peanuts and eventually “spice” the meal.

When the vegetables are soft and the liquid in the stew begins to thicken, add in the peanuts and serve.

Serve in a bowl with the rice portion on the bottom topped with the deep red vegetable stew. Then top-off your bowl of Angry Red Planet with the diced sharp cheddar cheese. Yummmmm!

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 14


POTATO HARVEST THIS SATURDAY AFTERNOON!!!! Come join the fun which starts at 2p and ends around 4. We’ll be getting out the potato digger but we need help picking up all the taters and putting them into bags.

You may have noticed that the cherry tomatoes are gone….they finally fully succumbed, as did all the other tomatoes in the field, to the tomato blight. We had been expecting this, but it was still sad to have to pull all the stakes out and disc them under with nary a tomato sandwich to show for all the work. Despite the gorgeous weather of the last two weeks, we still have some other diseases from all the previous wet weather taking hold in the fields. The basil looks particularly ugly, though we have hopes that it will grow out of it. The summer squashes are also going down quickly, so I don’t know how long we will continue to have it, despite adding in an extra seeding. However, on a good note, the brussel sprouts, broccolis and salad mixes are all looking exceptionally beautiful. We also hope that you are liking the sweet corn.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Kale- Red Russian & Tuscan

Swiss Chard

Summer Squash & Zucchini

Leeks

Cucumbers

Cabbage

Beets

Garlic

Lettuce

Sweet Corn

 

Pick Your Own

Green Beans are open but going by quickly.

Flowers are open, you may take a nice bouquet.

Basils are open; please take a large handful.

Herbs are open. You will find them in two places- the first is the cilantro is open just below the flowers- take no more than a small bunch. The second is in the perennial section- you will find marjoram, thyme, oregano, parsley, summer savory and winter savory, sage. Please DO NOT pick the lavender, or rosemary as they are too small. Please don’t hesitate to ask if you are not sure what’s what.

Featured vegetable–: Sweet Corn

Summer’s dream vegetable, the delectable sweetness of fresh corn. We grow four varieties of sweet corn to cover the whole season, though at times we’ve grown as many as eight while trying to find those that grow best in our soils. Our corn will probably taste less like sugar than those varieties you often find in the store since our corn is not meant to either travel far or sit on the shelf for at least a week. Instead you will find our corn to be nicely sweet, but still retaining that good, old-fashioned ‘corny’ flavor. We only grow the hybrid ‘super sweets’, not the triple xtra sweets.

Our corn varieties are meant to be eaten within a day of harvest and are truly best eaten within hours- our favorite way is straight off the plant, but since most folks like theirs cooked, our second favorite way is to put the pot on to boil and then make a mad dash for the field. We toss it in the boiling water for about 3 minutes and then pull it out and spread as much butter as we can get on it, a little salt and some chili powder. If we want to get really fancy, we squeeze some fresh lime juice on it. You can also soak it in water for 15 minutes without shucking and throw it on a hot grill for roasting.

 

Recipe of the Week: Pan-Fried Polenta with Corn, Kale and Goat Cheese

 

1 Tbsp butter

2 cloves garlic, minced

4 1/3 cups water

1 cup coarse ground yellow cornmeal

½ tsp salt

Kernels from 2 ears corn

Fresh ground pepper to taste

2 Tbsp Parmesan cheese

½ bunch kale

1 Tbsp olive oil

3 ounces soft chevre (goat cheese)

In a medium saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and stir constantly for about a minute. Add 3 cups of water and bring it to a boil.

While the water heats, quickly whisk together in a bowl the cornmeal, salt and 1 cup of water to make a smooth slurry. When the water in the saucepan comes to a boil, pour the slurry into it, whisking constantly for 3 minutes to prevent lumps from forming. Turn the heat to low. Cook the polenta for 40 min stirring with a  wooden spoon every 10 min or so.

Stir in the corn kernels and cook the polenta 5 min more. Add the pepper and the parmesan cheese. Pour the polenta into a lightly oiled 8x8inch pan and smooth the top with a plastic spatula. Let the polenta chill in the fridge for at least an hour. Cut away the stems and center stalks of the kale and cut the leaves into 3 inch pieces. Using a butter knife, cut the chilled polenta into four large triangles. Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over med high heat. When the oil begins to smoke carefully add the polenta triangles. Pan fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook until golden brown on the other side. Transfer to a baking sheet.

In the same skillet, toss the kale and remaining 1/3 cup of water. Cover and cook over med high heat for 4 minutes. Keep it warm.

Preheat the broiler. Place goat cheese on top of the polenta triangles and place under the broiler until cheese melts. Serve immediately on top of a bed of kale. Also delicious with slices of tomato or sautéed summer squash.

 

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 12


Been a long week with lots of animals to move to new fields, piglets born and it has just been hot….Even though it has been a relatively cool summer and this is probably all the dog days of summer that we are going to get, we farmers are still pretty tired of the sticky heat. But everything is growing like mad out there. We’ve been seeding out in the fields for the fall: scallions, bok choi, turnips, salad and mesclun and the seedlings are just hopping up out of the ground. We’re getting ready to harvest all the remaining potatoes- we’d love extra help getting them into bags and out of the field. Let us know if you are interested. It will probably be a Saturday afternoon gig sometime very soon.

 

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Kale- Red Russian & Tuscan

Swiss Chard

New Potatoes

Summer Squash & Zucchini

Shallots

Cucumbers & Lemon Cucumbers

Red Cabbage

Carrots

Garlic

Lettuce

 

Pick Your Own

Green Beans are open. First three beds are almost done, but the others are still going strong.

Flowers are open, you may take a nice bouquet.

Basils are open; please take a large handful.

Herbs are open. You will find them in two places- the first is the cilantro is open just below the flowers- take no more than a small bunch. The second is in the perennial section- you will find marjoram, thyme, oregano, parsley, summer savory and winter savory, sage. Please DO NOT pick the lavender, or rosemary as they are too small. Please don’t hesitate to ask if you are not sure what’s what.

Cherry tomatoes: Not much out there due to the spread of the blight but you may still get some. Try for a ½ pint.

 

Featured vegetable–: Swiss Chard

Swiss Chard is the spinach of the summer.

It is actually related directly to beets, only it was bred for large tender leaves and no root. We grow three varieties here (though there are many more including golden, a extra large white stem and a green). Argentata has a dark green leaf and a white stem, but the leaves are the softest and most tender of all the varieties we have tried. We also grow Ruby Red Rhubarb chard, so named because it looks just like Rhubarb (albeit smaller). This variety has a lot of flavor and in our opinion has the most ‘beet-like’ flavor of the chards, but it is beautiful in the pan and on the plate with its gorgeous red stems.  Bright Lights is a mix of all the colors of chard, everything from white, pink and red to gold, orange and a combination of all of the above. It is my favorite to bunch and sell at market, or harvest for you all because I love the colors. Too bad it doesn’t grow in the winter as I wish I could paint them all.

You can use it in many recipes as a direct substitute for spinach. It will have a slightly stronger flavor, but will still be delicious. Always strip the stems out of the leaf, chop and sauté first until just tender before throwing in the greens which you should cook until just wilting. Of course, you can always just sauté it with garlic and olive oil.

Recipe of the Week: Swiss Chard & Italian Sausage Lasagna

I made this last year for my mother’s birthday. It took a little longer than many of my meals, but it was amazingly delicious and well worth the time. It makes a great showcase meal for a special dinner or potluck! Vegetarians, just leave out the sausage! From Martha Stewart Living Magazine, Oct.2008

 

Filling:

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 ¼ lbs sweet Italian sausage, crumbled

3 shallots, peeled, halved lengthwise and cut into ¼ inch slices

3 pounds Swiss Chard, stems removed and chopped

3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1 Tbsp finely grated lemon zest

Fresh ground pepper

2 Tbsp lemon juice

 

Bechamel Sauce:

5 Tbsp unsalted butter

½ onion, cut into ¼ inch dice

1 ½ tsp coarse salt

½ tsp red pepper flakes

1/3 cup all purpose flour

4 ½ cups whole milk

 

Lasagna noodles, cooked to al dente and drained

8 ounces fontina cheese, grated (fancy, I know, but worth it for the extra deliciousness)

 

Preheat oven to 400. Make the filling. Heat oil in large pan over med-high heat. Add sausage, and cook, stirring until golden and cooked through. Transfer to a plate. Reduce heat to medium and add shallots to the pan. Cook, stirring often, until softened and translucent, about 4 min. Add chard and cook, stirring frequently until just starting to wilt, 1-2 min. add garlic, lemon zest, and salt and pepper. Cook until chard wilts completely, about 3 min. Stir in lemon juice, transfer to a colander to drain.

Make the béchamel: Melt butter in a med saucepan over med heat. Add onion, salt and red pepper flakes cook until onions are slightly translucent, about 5 min. stir in flour cook, stirring for 1 min. whisk in milk, a little at a time, until incorporated. Bring to a boil, stirring then reduce heat to low. Simmer stirring gently until thickened and creamy, about 10 min. Remove from heat, place a piece of parchment flush against the surface of sauce to prevent a skin from forming.

Using a 9×13 inch casserole dish use ¼ béchamel sauce on bottom, a layer of noodles then ½ chard and sausage. Top with a little more béchamel and another layer of noodles. Repeat, topping the last layer of noodles with last of béchamel and sprinkle with the grated fontina cheese. Bake until cheese is golden brown and sauce is bubbling, 30-35 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                          Week 11


Sorry for not having a newsletter last week. I fully intended to get one done, but ended up having an all day workshop on Tuesday and slicing my finger (3 stitches!) on Thursday. We’ve had a busy couple of weeks with two developments: first the happy news that we now have 3 healthy calves out on the pasture, 2 males and finally, our last one, a little female, born Monday morning. This has been wonderful since we lost the first calf of the season and it looked like we might have lost the second due to the disinterest of the cow, but he was adopted by the cow that lost her calf and is happily running around nursing off both of his mommas.

The other development is more closely relevant to you all as shareholders. We discovered the horrible Late Blight Fungus in our tomatoes this week. We aren’t surprised since every other farmer we know of, except for those that are conventional and are spraying heavy-duty fungicides every 3 days, have all lost their tomato and potato crops. We are sorry to join them, but we kind of knew that it was only a matter of time, since we are organic and refuse to spray poisons on our food. This means that more than likely we will not have tomatoes this season since the disease affects the fruits in addition to the foliage and stems of the plant. We have left the tomatoes in the PYO so that you may see what this disease looks like. If you have tomato plants at home, and if they have this disease, do not compost them! Instead, dispose of them by bagging the plants and sending them to the landfill, burning them, or burying them deep.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Swiss Chard

New Potatoes

Summer Squash & Zucchini

Fresh Red & Yellow Onions

Cucumbers & Lemon Cucumbers

Red Cabbage

Carrots

 

Pick Your Own

Green Beans are open. They don’t have to fit in your bag, please take up to ½ plastic storage bag for small share and a full bag for large share. The next planting is open for picking too. Look for purple wax beans! The other beds are still open.

Flowers are open, please pick only a small bouquet out of the annual beds (up to eight stems or so) and fill out with the perennials in the lower beds.

Basils are open for pinching only, no pesto yet! There is Sweet Italian basil, thai, purple opal and Lemon basil. Please go to the middle of the bed for picking, the first few plants are getting a little worn out.

Cherry tomatoes: Not much out there due to the spread of the blight. The blight is not as bad at the far end of the row so there may be some still out there.

 

Featured vegetable–: Basils

Some of you have been asking about the basils that are out in the PYO. Everyone seems to recognize the Italian basil, but the others are still a bit of a mystery for a lot of you.

The small leaved, purple stemmed basil is Thai basil. This is a delicious addition to a basic stir-fry- it has a cinnamony basil flavor with just a touch of anise that adds dimension and depth to your meal. Our favorite way to use it is to toss a bunch of our favorite veggies into a heavy skillet or wok with a little oil. While the veggies are still cooking, but tender, we throw in a half can of coconut milk and a dollop of green or red thai curry paste and a scant handful of chopped thai basil. Simmer the veggies in the sauce until tender. Serve with rice and chopped peanuts and/or a little scrambled egg.

The purple leaved basil is best used raw in salads. It is delicious with a mild basil flavor similar to the Italian basil and beautiful served with fresh Mozzarella and drizzled with good olive oil.

The Lemon basil is the lighter green leaved (and frequently flowering) basil whose leaves have a distinct lemon scent. This basil can be used in pestos for a different twist on an old favorite, but its real glory is to be found in a cream sauce. Add chopped lemon basil to any basic white sauce and be amazed. It brings a whole new world to alfredo or béchamel.

Recipe of the Week:

We thought we might as well share our favorite summer zucchini recipe even though we’ve already given a lot of info about the basils above because we don’t want you to get sick of squash just yet. So try this fabulous recipe, you won’t be disappointed. From the Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen.

 

Zucchine-Feta Pancakes

4 eggs, separated

4 packed cups grated zucchini

1 cup crumbled feta

½ cup finely minced scallions or onion

A little salt

Lots of black pepper

1/3 cup flour

Oil for skillet

Sour cream or Yogurt for topping

 

Beat the egg whites until stiff. In a medium sized bowl, combine zucchini, egg yolks, feta, scallions, seasonings and flour. Mix well. Fold the egg whites into the zucchini mixture. Heat a little oil in a heavy skillet. When it is very hot, add spoonfuls of batter, and fry on both sides until golden and crisp. Serve immediately with sour cream or yogurt.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                            Week 9


Wild Blueberries are here, fresh, delicious and ready for pick-up. The Benson Place is having a really good year. The rain has made for copious berries that are fat and full of juice. The bears are ever-present, but they said that they are not a big problem and they kind of like seeing them every day anyway. Share and share alike.

Bad news: some of our potato varieties are dying and the tomatoes don’t look that good either. I’m still holding out that it isn’t the horribleness that is the fungal Late Blight, but it is really hard to tell what is killing them.

The warm sun is working wonders out in the gardens. Veggies that we were convinced were doomed to not grow and produce are recovering and some have caught up with amazing speed (I think you could probably hear the corn growing). We might just get some pumpkins this year, though the jury is still out on any red peppers. We’re pulling green peppers off of plants that are only about 6-8inches tall in most cases when they should be almost 18 inches. Hopefully as the soil continues to dry out and warm up, more wonders will occur, we’ll keep you informed.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Lettuce mix

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Swiss Chard

New Potatoes

Beets

Summer Squash & Zucchini

 

 

Pick Your Own

Green Beans are open. They don’t have to fit in your bag, please take up to ½ plastic storage bag full. There are three types ready for picking: Provider and Jade are the two beds of greens, the other bed is made up of one row of Yellow Wax beans and one row of Dragon’s Tongue- an heirloom bean that looks like a Roma, but isn’t. It’s yellow with purple stripes and is thick, sweet and very juicy. Give it a try and we’ll think you’ll love it.

Flowers are open, please pick only a small bouquet out of the annual beds (up to eight stems or so) and fill out with the perennials in the lower beds.

Basils are open for pinching only, no pesto yet! There is Sweet Italian basil, thai, purple opal and Lemon basil. Please go to the middle of the bed for picking, the first few plants are getting a little worn out.

Cherry tomatoes: tasting only. We don’t really have enough to give out in quantity but it is so hard to see some sitting out there with no one to eat them. Even if they are split, pop them in your mouth for a delicious preview of pick-ups to come.

 

Featured vegetable–: Potatoes

Since we love variety around here, we have Red Norlands, Red-Golds, All-Blues, All-Reds, Fingerlings, Kennebec, Yukon Golds, and Russets in our fields for your eating pleasure. Now the season has not been great for our little earthen lovelies- they don’t enjoy wet soils and this year they have been very wet indeed. Also, it appears that some of our varieties are highly susceptible to fungal disease and have died off earlier in the season than they should have, leaving us with smaller potatoes than in better years. Such is the plight of the farmer. We are leaving those varieties that are still alive (if not exactly thriving) in the field to grow as much as they can. Some of the storage varieties, such as Kennebec, fingerlings and All-Blues are doing just fine and will hopefully plug right along until the final potato harvest in late September. We need the weather to stay warm and drier until then. 

 

Recipe of the Week: Potatoes ( & Kale)

It seems that one of my favorite cookbooks often pairs potatoes with kale and many recipes. Since this seems delightful to me and lots of you keep asking me what you should do with kale. Here are a few recipes from Preserving the Harvest,  by Andrea Chesman.

Portugese Kale Soup (Caldo verde)

1/2lb garlicky smoked sausage (such as a chorizo or linguica)

8 cups chicken broth

3-4 medium potatoes, diced

12 ounces of kale, stems discarded and leaves chopped (8 cups lightly packed)

Salt and fresh ground pepper

 

Combine the sausage and stock in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and simmer while you prepare the potatoes. Cover the potatoes with water in a medium saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Drain and briefly mash with a potato masher for a lumpy, uneven texture. Add to the stock along with the kale. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the kale is tender. Season with salt and pepper and serve hot.

 

Kale with Sausage and garlic-roasted potatoes

 

4 medium potatoes, sliced ¼ inch thick

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 Tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper

1 pound hot or sweet Italian sausage (uncased)

2 cups chicken broth

1 ¼ -1 ½ lb kale, stems removed and leaves chopped

Preheat oven to 425. Brush a large baking sheet with oil. Combine the potatoes, garlic and 1 tsp of olive oil in a medium bowl. Season with a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper and toss to coat. Spread the potatoes out in a single layer on the baking sheet and roast for 25 minutes or so, turning the potatoes a few times to brown evenly. Heat the remaining 1 Tbsp of olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Sauté the sausage in oil until no pink shows and the sausage is cooked through, about 8 minutes. Stir in the broth and the kale. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer until the kale is wilted but still bright green, 8-10 minutes. Mix in the potatoes. Season with salt and pepper and serve at once.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                            Week 8


I’ve still got the sign-up out for wild blueberries from The Benson Place in Heath and I will be picking them up on August 3rd, barring rainy weather in which case it will be the 5th. If you are a Saturday pick-up, we are happy to put them in the freezer if you would like though they should still be fine if refrigerated. We are pricing them by the pint ($4) and the quart ($7.75) this year. Chickens should be here in the freezer this week (she’ll try to get them to me by Tuesday, but if not, it will be Wednesday).

We’ve been informed by USDA that there is the potential for us to get a serious fungal disease, called Late Blight, in our tomatoes and potatoes. Apparently it has spread far and wide due to the mass distribution of infected tomato transplants sold by big box stores. This disease caused the Irish Potato Famine and is easily blown about by thunderstorms and thrives in wet, humid, cool conditions. As an organic farm, there is not a whole lot we can do to prevent it in our fields, so we are keeping an eye on the field and keeping our fingers crossed. If we do find it, we will try and isolate it (by yanking the plants out, sealing them in plastic bags and putting them in the dumpster). If it takes root in our fields, we will have no choice but to wipe them all out to prevent the spread of this virulent disease.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Lettuce mix

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Swiss Chard

Carrots

Beets

Summer Squash & Zucchini

 

Pick Your Own

Peas are done

Green Beans are open. They don’t have to fit in your bag, please take up to ½ plastic storage bag full. There are three types ready for picking: Provider and Jade are the two beds of greens, the other bed is made up of one row of Yellow Wax beans and one row of Dragon’s Tongue- an heirloom bean that looks like a Roma, but isn’t. It’s yellow with purple stripes and is thick, sweet and very juicy. Give it a try and we’ll think you’ll love it.

Flowers are open, please pick only a small bouquet out of the annual beds (up to eight stems or so) and fill out with the perennials in the lower beds.

Basils are open for pinching only, no pesto yet! There is Sweet Italian basil, thai, purple opal and Lemon basil out there….give them all a try.

Cherry tomatoes: tasting only. We don’t really have enough to give out in quantity but it is so hard to see some sitting out there with no one to eat them. Even if they are split, pop them in your mouth for a delicious preview of pick-ups to come.

 

Featured vegetable–: Summer Squash and Zucchini

Whew. It doesn’t really feel like summer to me until the summer squashes start coming in like gangbusters. I can honestly say that it is one of my favorite vegetables. I love their versatility, that they are practically hypoallergenic, and that they are so sweet harvested fresh out of the field.

This year we have your standard zucchinis and yellow squashes. We also have a couple of strange varieties that don’t often show up in grocery stores: Patty Pan (yellow, green and both), Zephyr ( large yellow squash with green tip- these are supposed to be big, but remain tender and sweet despite their size) and Cousa (green Lebanese squash that is a marvel for stuffing). Please please, don’t steam or BOIL these beauties- they lose all texture (except slime) and sweetness. Instead, try sautéing in olive oil with garlic or roasting (yes, you can do this on the grill!). They make great kabobs. You can also always substitute them, zucchini for summer squash, in recipes- they are the same thing only different colors and shapes.

 

Recipe of the Week: Summer Squashes from Lebanese Cuisine by Madelain Farah.

Contrary to most stuffed squash recipes this one calls for smaller squashes.

Kusa Mihshi (Stuffed Zucchini, Cousa or Yellow Squash)

3 lbs, up to 8 inches in length.

1 small chopped onion

Butter for sautéing

1 cup uncooked rice

1lb. lamb shoulder finely chopped or freshly ground lamb

1/8 tsp. cinnamon

1 Tbsp salt

Pepper to taste

1 lb can stewed tomatoes or 3 large tomatoes, peeled & diced.

Core zucchini leaving ½” walls be careful not to pierce shell. Rinse in cold water and drain. Saute onions in butter in large pan. Place rinsed, drained rice in a bowl. Add meat and seasonings; mix well. Then add half of the diced tomatoes to meat and mix. Stuff the zucchinis ¾ full. Arrange zucchini over sautéed onions and pour the rest of the tomatoes on top. Barely cover with water and 2 tsp of additional salt. Cover and cook on medium heat for about 35 minutes or until the rice is done. Gently remove zucchini to serving platter. Serve liquid on side to be pour over, if desired.

ZUCCHINI-CARROT CAKE

Thank you to Sue & Thom Smith for this delicious dessert (or breakfast!) cake recipe.

2 eggs
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup oil
1 ¼ cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp salt
1 cup carrot, grated
1 cup zucchini, grated and drained
½ cup chopped nuts (I use golden raisins)

Beat eggs with sugar until frothy.  Gradually beat in oil.  Add dry ingredients.  Beat at high speed 4 minutes.  Stir in carrot, zucchini, and nuts/raisins.  Pour into greased 9 inch square baking pan.  Bake in a 350 degree oven about 35 minutes, or until top springs back when lightly touched.  Frost.

Frosting

1 3-OZ  Pkg cream cheese, softened
3 tbsp margarine or butter
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar

Blend cream cheese & margarine.  Add sugar and vanilla, beat until smooth. Chill to set frosting and enjoy.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                            Week 7


We are going to start pre-orders this week for Earthfire Farm’s pasture raised broiler chickens and for The Benson Place’s wild blueberries. Order forms are on the table, but if you didn’t see them, you may email me at info@holidayfarm.com. Chickens are sold by the pound and will be somewhere around $5.25/lb with birds weighing in at between 3-5 lbs. They are also offering livers and feet if you are interested.

The Benson Place in Heath is on the top of the mountain and leave their berries un-sprayed., so basically organic without the paperwork. These are amazing, perfect for eating fresh, jam, pie or freezing. We are pricing them by the pint ($4) and the quart ($7.75) this year. I’m hoping that the price won’t be much different than last year but we will have to see (I also might get more of a discount if I get more than 100 lbs). You can also talk to me if you would like to get a certain number of pounds.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Lettuce mix

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Scallions

Carrots

Senposai Collards

Summer Squash & Zucchini

 

Pick Your Own

Peas are almost done but there are a few still out there, especially shelling peas.

Green Beans are now open. Pick only in the first bed up from the peas for now. The other varieties seem to be taking a little longer. Pick only what you will eat for a meal or two- please do not pick for canning or freezing. These are part of your bag so leave room!

Flowers- these are really just getting started so please pick only a small bouquet for now. Please refer to the board for a detailed explanation on how to pick the flowers so that we may continue to pick and enjoy them from now until frost. Thanks!

 

Featured vegetable–: Carrots

Many of you noticed that we had some purple carrots last week. These are an heirloom variety called Purple Dragon. These are actually a lot closer to the original wild carrots that were domesticated in Turkey. For unknown reasons, we then bred the color out of them so that they were orange or yellow or white. The recent popularity in heirloom varieties of vegetables has seen a marked return of these beautiful and dramatic carrots. We also have Atomic Reds- another rich, darker carrot. Both heirlooms have a deep carroty flavor that makes them the best choice for making carrot cake or muffins. They also look beautiful on the crudite platter mixed with other carrots.

 

Recipe of the Week: Carrots

Carrots, carrots, carrots. I thought you all might like a few ‘different’ carrot recipes that are simple, yet easy and delicious.

 Pickled Carrots with Ginger from The Vegetarian Planet by Didi Emmons.

After you’ve eaten the carrots, re-use the sauce to for anything other veggie that comes to mind including green beans, cucumbers, summer squashes….or more carrots.

1 cup sugar

1 cup rice vinegar

1 cup water

1 tsp salt

1 3-inch piece ginger, sliced ¼ inch thick

1 pound carrots, preferably small, scraped (you shouldn’t have to peel our carrots since they are so fresh- simply use the back of a knife to scrape their thin skins off)

In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, vinegar, water, salt and ginger. Bring the mixture to a simmer, and add the carrots. Make sure the carrots are completely immersed, then cover the pan. Simmer the carrots for 15-20 minutes or until they can be easily cut with a fork. Transfer the carrots and their liquid to a container with a lid and let them cool. Cover the container and refrigerate the carrots in their liquid until you are ready to use them. They’ll keep well for over a week.

 

Carrot Muffins

Little more complicated, but a good breakfast thing.

1 ½ cups unbleached flour

½ cup whole wheat flour

½ cup sugar

1 Tbsp cinnamon

2 tsp baking powder

3/4  tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

1 ½ cups grated carrots (4 medium)

½ cup currants or raisins

2 large eggs

¾ cup apple butter or thick apple sauce

2 Tbsp canola oil

1 Tbsp vanilla extract

2 Tbsp finely chopped walnuts (opt)

 

Preheat oven to 375. Lightly oil or butter 12 muffin cups. In a large bowl, whisk flours, sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, soda and salt. Stir in carrots and currants. In a smaller bowl, whisk eggs, apple butter, oil and vanilla. Stir into dry ingredients until just moistened. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups. Sprinkle tops with chopped nuts and bake for 20 minutes or until tops spring back when lightly pressed.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                            Week 6


The sun is shining down upon us finally! While it is still pretty cool out there (the peppers and tomatoes would like it to be a little warmer), the sun has made a huge difference in the fields. Not only are there less weeds since we could actually kill them in the last few days, but the soil is drying out and warming up and nutrients are more available to the plants rather than just washing away. We hope to have summer squash in the next week or so and the potatoes are just starting to size up so we will soon have new potatoes as well. Calves and piglets are soon to be born! We’ll let you know when it happens and where you can view them as soon as it happens.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Beets-mixed

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Scallions

Carrots

Senposai Collards

Cabbage

 

Pick Your Own

Peas are open for picking. If you haven’t, try the shelling peas, these delicious peas have an inedible pod and you need to pop them out to enjoy their sweetness. Don’t equate them with the ones you buy in the freezer section- these are so sweet they are better than candy.

 

Farm news: We will soon be taking pre-orders for Earthfire Farm’s delicious pasture raised chickens. She will be harvesting them in the next week or so. Look for a sign-up sheet!

 

Featured vegetable–: Cabbage

When exactly humans domesticated wild cabbage (a European coastal native similar to kale) is still somewhat a mystery but has been estimated at between a few hundred and a few thousand years b.c. The Greeks and Romans were both fond of it, espousing it as a preventative for drunkenness and a cure for hangover. Sauerkraut and other forms of pickled cabbage were spread throughout Eastern Europe by nomads.

We have a couple of lovely cabbages this year for you to try. While we are starting with the mini-green and arrowhead types this week we will also have some small red cabbages joining them in the near future. All are sweeter and milder in cabbage flavor than your standard grocery store cabbage since they are picked fresh the day you pick them up. They will not store well in your basement as these are meant for fresh eating so don’t try. We have storage cabbages going in the field for fall harvest and those are the ones you want to make sauerkraut from or store in the root cellar.

Recipe of the Week:

This week, upon request, we are including a couple of nice slaw recipes that are quick and easy and don’t require cooking. Keep in mind that they will all be best if let to sit to meld their flavors for at least an hour after mixing. Enjoy!

 

Basic Cabbage Slaw, from The Farm Cookbook, by Phillies Bridge Farm Project & Four Winds Farm

 

½ lb -1 ½ lbs of carrots (use more or less depending on how much you like carrots)

4 cups of finely slivered/shredded cabbage

1/3 cup white wine vinegar

2 Tbsp sugar

1 clove garlic minced

1 tsp fresh ginger, minced

Salt to taste

 

In a salad bowl, gently mix the vegetables, vinegar, sugar, garlic and ginger. Season to taste with salt. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. This recipe is also great using the Chinese cabbage, if you have any left.

 

My Mother’s Mustardy Slaw, from Serving Up the Harvest by Andrea Chesman, Storey Pubishing

 

4 cups grated green cabbage

2 carrots, grated

¼ cup minced onion

1 cup mayonnaise

3 Tbsp mustard

Salt and fresh ground pepper

 

Combine the cabbage, carrots and onion in a large bowl. Combine the mayonnaise and mustard in a small bowl and mix. Spoon over cabbage mixture and mix well until combined. Add the salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, up to 8 hours before serving.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                            Week 5


So, while we are still waiting for summer to really get going, things are happy for the slight warm-up we’ve had over the last few days. We’ve watched a few small things really jump up, but at least we’ve mostly managed to keep just one step ahead of the weeds and get everything in the ground kind of on time. We did watch two plantings of lettuce, ready to harvest, turn into little brown mounds of slime. So. Don’t be surprised if you don’t have any head lettuce this week. Or next week. If the rot doesn’t spread to the other plantings we should be fine in two weeks or so and have more of those delicious, crunchy heads for you.

I would also just like to shout out the reminder to everyone that we grow seasonal vegetables and since we don’t have high tunnels or many acres of fields under glass (which we could do, but would increase the cost of your share threefold) we are totally dependent on the weather and what the season can support. There won’t be sweet corn or tomatoes until August because we live in the Berkshires, not Virginia, or even Hadley (they are about two weeks ahead of here and have a much warmer climate). Season extensions are in the works, but we have to start small in order to keep the costs to a minimum.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Lettuce mix

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Scallions

Garlic scapes

Senposai Collards

Chinese Cabbage

 

Pick Your Own

Peas are open for picking.

Everything else is plugging along, but the rain has it all slowed down. We hope to open flowers and basil in the next few weeks.

 

Farm news: Sheep got haircuts last week and we now have wool fleeces available by the pound for hand-spinning, felting, or stuffing. Look for examples from our flock in the CSA room. 

 

Featured vegetable–: Chinese Cabbage

Don’t be intimidated by the size of this lovely asian cabbage because it will cook down so much in any recipe that you will wish that there was more. It is a must for any stir-fry or fried rice recipe. It is the essential ingredient in Korean Kim-Chi (a spicy pickled condiment similar to sauerkraut but with lots of garlic and chilis); chinese cabbage also makes the more delicious home-made egg rolls. And if you’ve never make egg rolls at home, this is a treat that your kids will love. Grab some of the egg roll wrappers from the grocer and whip up a favorite stir-fry. Stuff the wrappers and fry up for a special dinner (this does take a while but it is so worth it).

 

Recipe of the Week: Chinese Cabbage and Toasted Almonds

This is my mother-in-law’s recipe and we always beg her to make a double batch because we just can’t get enough of it. From Sally Stites-Robertson, Crabapple Farm

1 chinese cabbage, sliced crosswise with larger stems chopped

2 Tbsp Canola or sunflower oil

Toasted sesame oil

Soy sauce or tamari or miso paste (or all three)

1 package of rice noodles, any size

1 cup of almonds, sliced (if not toasted, toast quickly under the broiler until they are light brown but not burnt- watch them carefully!)

1-4 cloves of garlic

Heat a large pot of water on the stove and either cook or soak your rice noodles according to the package directions. Drain and rinse to remove starch.

Meanwhile, heat a wok or large heavy skillet on high until piping hot, then turn the heat down to medium and toss in the sesame oil and the stems of the Chinese cabbage. Saute briefly and then add in the leaves, the soy sauce and the garlic. Cook until the leaves just wilt. Toss in the soaked rice noodles and stir briefly- adding more soy sauce to taste. Remove from heat and add the toasted almonds. Serve immediately or chill with a little more oil to prevent sticky noodles. Garnish with sesame seeds, more almonds, or even a quickly scrambled egg.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                            Week 4


Well, maybe the rain will give us a break this week and let us get some weeding done. We’re running a little behind (but then again, so are the plants- too much rain is just too much). In any case, the work sign-up sheets are out on the table finally and we could really use your help. We’ve added sign-ups for weeding & harvesting work in addition to distribution help and for times during the week. If for some reason, the times or days don’t work for you, please let us know and we can figure something else out.

 What’s in your share (maybe)

Lettuce

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Swiss Chard

Baby beets (EAT those GREENS)

Garlic scapes

Senposai Collards

Mesclun

 

Pick Your Own

Peas are open for picking. Look on the board for which rows are ready and grab a berry basket for measuring. Please bring back our berry baskets as they are expensive and we’d like them to last all summer.

 

Farm news: Our new barn is underway. Last year we got a grant from the Farm Viability Program to  help us pay for a whole new pig barn and after a year of planning, architects, site surveys (thank you Hill Engineers!) and changing our minds, we now have a barn ready to go up. Some assembly required (you will see all the timbers lying in piles in the farmyard.

 

Featured vegetable–: Mesclun

We’ve had lots of questions about the mesclun mix, so I figured that we would highlight what goes into Holiday Brook’s CSA mesclun mix. Our mix is comprised of arugula, mizuna, green wave, ruby streaks and red giant mustards, tat-soi and red Russian kale; sometimes we will add some swiss chard and spinach to the mix depending on the season. It contains no lettuce even though we often add this to our salad mix. When we can, we like to offer this tantalizing mix separately than our lettuces so that you can choose to savor the lovely tender mustard greens by themselves raw in a salad with a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of salt and some shaved parmesan. You can also add them to a stir-fry, soup or toss them on a sandwich for a spicy splash to liven up your lunch. Our mesclun grows quickly if we don’t get to cutting it quickly, and when it is big we offer it as our braising mix- a nice group of larger greens that make for great pesto or tossed into any recipe calling for greens.

 

Recipe of the Week: Beet Salad with Walnut Dressing

I’ve doctored this recipe to accommodate this week’s beets and mesclun.

1 bunch baby beets (save those greens for a cooking green recipe or chop and throw into the mesclun mix)

4 tsp red wine vinegar

¾ tsp salt

¼ tsp black pepper

4 Tbsp favorite salad oil

¼ cup broken walnut pieces

Mesclun mix

 

You may either peel & grate your beets, or you may roast them whole in the oven until tender and then quarter them. Combine the vinegar, salt & pepper in a jar and shake until well mixed. Add the oil and shake until blended. Toss the beets, dressing and the nuts. Arrange greens on plate and top with the dressed beets.

 

This is also delicious with crumbled goat cheese, gorgonzola or feta.

Garden CSA 2009                                                                            Week 3


“When is my basket/bag full?”

Every week we strive to answer your most burning questions:  What is the best way to store lettuce?  How do I cook bok choi?  What is a garlic scape?  How old are those pigs?  What else happens here at the farm?  Who are the people who grow and harvest my food?  Did I miss the eggs?  This week we tackle the sometimes delicate question:  When is my basket/bag full? 

Our share size system is volume-based (also known as ‘market-style’).  We like this system a lot because you get to choose which vegetables go into your weekly share.  We adopted this system early in our history, dropping the then common CSA practice in which farmers determined specific amounts of each item for each members share — 1 head of broccoli, 1 lb of carrots, ¼ lb of spinach, etc.  The old system ensured fairness and equality, but often meant that folks would take something even if they knew they wouldn’t eat it. The market style ensures that you can take what you want to eat, and leave what you don’t.

Our system is honor-based.  We rely on all members to pay attention to our basic basket/bag limits in order to ensure fairness and avoid running out of some items.  This is why we remind you to use your baskets/bags, and why we try to comment tactfully when your basket/bag is full.  We truly dislike being Basket Police, and ask all members to pitch in!

Here are our basket/bag-filling guidelines

  • In general, all items must fit within your basket, including U-pick items.  By “fit within,” we mean the vegetables are comfortably fitted together and even a little mounded over the top, but not packed tightly and/or overflowing.  Tight packing is bad for your vegetables and our community.  If you have questions, please ask.  If we are commenting on your basket/bag fullness, please do not take offense.
  • We will let you know if an item does not need to fit in your basket.  This may change from one week to the next (for example, your lettuce might need to fit in your basket one week, but not several weeks later) and from one year to the next. We make this decision based on factors such as overall harvest amounts, timing of bumper crops, and size of individual items (particularly items like cabbage that nearly fill a small share basket).  Please trust and abide by our judgments on this.
  • Some items will be limited to ensure that all members get some that week.  We will post limits on the large baskets and the large white board.  Distribution helpers may also remind you of these limits.  Limits will change each week, so please look for posted amounts every week.   
  • U-pick items are intended for weekly use only, not for canning or freezing.  For example, we cannot grow ample produce to allow members to pick green beans for mid-winter eating.  Unless noted, U-pick items need to fit in your basket.  If we have bumper crops and you are interested in purchasing large amounts for canning or freezing, please talk with the farmers for price information.  

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Lettuce

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Salad turnips (the last until fall)

Radishes

Baby Bok Choi

Garlic scapes

Senposai Collards

 

Pick Your Own

Peas are open for picking. Look on the board for which rows are ready and grab a berry basket for measuring!

 

Farm news: New product in the Fridge: Sidehill Farm Yogurt! This delicious yogurt is creamy and sweet and comes in five flavors. It is made right over the hill in Ashfield by our friends Amy Klippenstein and Paul Lacinski with the help of their lovely  organic herd of Normande, Jersey and Canadienne cows (we’ve met them and they sweeties). They move their girls to fresh grass twice a day, leave their calves with them in the herd and in so many other ways are doing it all right.

 

Featured vegetable–: Peas

There are few people out there that don’t like peas in some form or another. Fresh peas are the fruits of spring and early summer, while still green, they bring a refreshing change from the now standard leafy fare of salad and greens. Peas also serve an additional purpose in the garden by taking nitrogen out of the air and ‘fixing’ it in the soil for ready access by the other plants that follow it. Nature’s fertilizer in its own silent and splendid way. We have three types of peas out in the field for you to pick and try this season. Sugar Snaps have an edible pod and pea, so you can eat the whole pod (usually on the way home from the farm). English shelling peas are a favorite with the kids. They love to pop these incredibly sweet little beauties right out of their tough shells and right into their mouths. New this year are snow peas, another edible pod pea, they should be flat with just a hint of little peas showing along one edge. They are delicious raw or tossed into stir-fries right at the end so that they turn bright green but still retain their perfect crunch (this is true for sugar snaps as well, though they rarely make it back out of the car).

Recipe of the Week: Sauteed Sugar Snap Peas with Carrots and Ginger-Honey Glaze

While I don’t usually like to include recipes that also have a vegetable currently offered by the farm, this one sounded so good that I had to include it. From Farmer John’s Cookbook, The Real Dirt on Vegetables: Seasonal Recipes and Stories from a Community Farm.

½-1lb sugar snap peas

2 medium carrots, peeled

2 Tbsp butter

1 Tbsp honey

A couple pieces crystallized ginger, chopped fine (about 1-2 Tbsp, to taste)

Fresh ground pepper

Remove strings from both edges of the pea pods. Cut each carrot into thirds and slice lengthwise so that they are about the same size as the pea pods. Place carrots in a steamer basket and steam until just crisp-tender, 3-5 minutes. Melt the butter in  a large skillet over medium heat and add the peas; cook, stirring frequently for 5 minutes. Add the carrots. Continue to cook until peas are bright green, about 3 minutes. Add the honey & ginger and cook for 1 more minute, stirring constantly, until the peas and carrots are glazed. Season with pepper to taste.

Note: You can always use fresh ginger if you have it on hand. I usually don’t and find that the crystallized ginger works just fine in a lot of recipes.

 

Rain, rain go AWAY!! We’ve had a lot of rain in the last week and wow, are the plants really growing. This includes the weeds. We’re busy out there in the fields whenever the sun is shining. We just got our International Cub Tractor back from the shop- this is Desiree’s 61 year old cultivating tractor (the little red one) and she has been working her way through the fields trying to get a handle on the weeds. We were starting to lose ground working with just hoes and hands, and were just starting to catch up when this newest round of wet hit us.

Twice this past week the rising river has drowned out our temporary electric fencing for the cattle, making it necessary to bring feed to them (as they were stuck on the other side of the brook next to the VEGETABLE field instead of on the pasture side). So far they seem to be staying where they belong….

We would like to e-mail out this newsletter to save on printing costs and to give you a heads up on what is coming for the week so that you can plan your meals around your coming vegetables. Please, please, make this easier for us by flagging our email address, info@holidayfarm.com as “safe” (especially if you have hotmail, aol or yahoo accounts!). We will also start posting the newsletter on the blog site (which is a great place to check out and keep up with what’s happening at the farm throughout the year) www.holidaybrookfarm.com .

We have some shares still available, so if you have friends that were interested, tell them to come on down- not on Tuesday, but Thursday and Saturday pick-ups are still open.

 


What’s in your share (maybe)

Lettuce

Kale- Red Russian, Green & Red Curly

Braising mix

Arugula

Salad turnips

Radishes

Swiss Chard

Baby Bok Choi

Garlic scapes

 

Pick Your Own

There is nothing out there yet folks, but the peas are getting there! We’ve planted almost everything, we’re just waiting on the growing.

 

Farm news: Don’t forget to check the freezers for farm-raised pork & BEEF!  We have moved the freezer into the distribution sugar house, and the fridge should be joining it in the near future. Look for local cheeses, yogurt and other goodies from local producers. Let us know if there is something you would like to see us carry in our farm store.

 

Also the weekly mountain bike races start up on Wednesday nights starting June 17th. Please be on site and registered by 5:45p for the kids race and 6p for the adult races. Fees have increased a little from last year due to rising insurance costs, but it is still well worth it for the fun.

 

Featured vegetable–: Salad Turnips

These little beauties are a spring and fall treat that some of you wait all season for. They are have a taste like a sweet, sweet crunchy radish with just a little bit of tang. They were developed to be eaten raw, though they are delicious in your favorite turnip recipe as well. Grate or slice them into your salads, chop them fine into pasta, potato or tuna salads for a great crunch. We slice them into a quick veggie stir-fry right at the end and our kids love the crunch and the way they soak up the soy sauce. And EAT those greens, they are loaded with vitamin C and are delicious. Jan and Ian chopped them fine into a batch of pasta they were making (rolling out by hand no less) and we added them to a pasta sauce. They make a bright green, tasty side dish if sautéed with a little bacon.

 

Recipe of the Week: Pasta with Arugula Pesto

Okay, so this week the recipe is incongruous with the veggie of the week, but salad turnips are easy and details of what to do with them are above. We love this pesto recipe- and you can substitute mixed mustard greens, turnip greens and so on.

8 cups arugula leaves

½ cup pine nuts, walnuts or cashews

2 garlic cloves

½ cup olive oil

½ cup freshly grated Parmesan

8 sun-dried tomatoes, softened and minced (opt)

1 lb vermicelli

Salt and fresh ground pepper

½ cup pitted cured black olives (opt)

 

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the arugula and blanch until just wilted, about 30 seconds. Remove the arugula with tongs and transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Let cool and then drain. Keep the water in the pot hot for the pasta. Squeeze out as much moisture from the arugula as possible.

Chop nuts and garlic in food processor, add the arugula and process until finely chopped. Add the oil, cheese and process until a thick paste. Transfer to a bowl and stir in tomatoes and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Return water to a boil and add pasta. Cook until al dente. Reserve ½ cup pasta water and drain pasta.

Transfer pasta to a serving bowl. Mix the arugula pesto to the pasta, using the reserve pasta water to add moisture if needed. Serve immediately with extra parmesan cheese.

One response

10 09 2009
Beatrice Goodman

i made leek/potato soup for the first time… YUM!!! perhaps there could be more recipes with them as they are a product that does not show up in most stores? bea

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