October 3 or 7 CSA

There is 1 more share after this week for the 2018 CSA season.

This weeks’ share includes:  2 butternut squash, 4 pounds of burgundy sweet potatoes, 3 small heads of lettuce, 1 bunch of Italian parsley, 1 small fennel bulb, 1 bunch of baby carrots, 1 bulb of garlic, 1/2 pound of aji dulce peppers.

We tested the sweet potatoes yesterday and the ones we saved taste good so here they are.  I recommend eating them in the next couple weeks.

The aji dulce peppers are producing loads of peppers right now so I wanted to give you enough to make the following recipe.

Puerto Rican – Style Aji Dulce Sauce (Ajilimojili)

12 -20 aji dulces, 7 garlic cloves, 1 small yellow onion, 1 cup extra virgin olive oil, 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar, 1 bunch of cilantro (about 2 cups), salt to taste, 1/2 teaspoon dries oregano, 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin, optional: 1 hot chile.

Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender and grind to a course sauce.  The sauce will keep in the refrigerator, tightly covered, for 2 to 3 days.

Serve with boiled or roasted sweet potatoes and / or irish potatoes.  In Puerto Rico it is served with boiled yuca.  It is also good with beans and rice or with chicken or beef.

 

 

September 26 or 29 CSA

This picture is Aaron’s and my hands after completing the worst job of our season.  Just before hurricane Florence didn’t hit us we decided to harvest all the orange sweet potatoes.  They looked great, our best sweet potatoes crop yet.  We tucked them away in an insulated walk-in and turned a heater onto low to “cure” the skins.  We checked on them daily for 4 days and then didn’t go for 2 days.  During that time, it got too hot in the room and we cooked 90% of them.  We had to go thru them because they weren’t all bad.  It was a grueling and constant reminder of our mistake.  There will be some sweet potatoes (we hope) in your box next week.  We wanted to hold them 1 more week to be sure they are in fact good.

This weeks’ share contents:  1 bunch radish, 1 bunch mild white turnips, 1 head of radicchio, 1 small head of celery, 1 bunch of kale, 2 pounds red onions, 3 pounds of satina potatoes, 1 kohlrabi.

I am aware that many of you do not love radicchio as much as I do but maybe give it one more try…A salad made of equal parts radicchio and pear or apple, some toasted walnuts, blue cheese and a balsamic vinaigrette is really quite delicious.

Radishes and kohlrabi combined make a great slaw and are also both great for adding to your ferments.

Delicious Turnips  (adapted from “The Talisman Italian Cookbook”)

3 T butter or oil

1 lb turnips, sliced thin

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp black pepper

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp flour

1/2 cup stock or water

greens washed and sliced thin

Melt butter or heat oil in pan, add turnips, salt, pepper, and sugar and sprinkle with flour.  Mix well, add stock and greens and cook over low flame 15 mins or until tender.

Creamy Kale and Potato Soup

Ingredients

  • 5 tablespoons butter or oil
  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 small head of celery, roughly chopped
  • 3 large potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 8 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2-3 cups chopped kale, stems removed
  • 2 cups milk (doesn’t have to be cows’ milk)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Heat the butter in a large pot over medium high heat. Add the onions, celery and potatoes and saute until golden brown, 5-8 minutes, sprinkling with salt and pepper. Add 6 cups of the broth and the kale; simmer for 5-10 minutes until the kale softens and becomes a darker green.
  2. Transfer the soup to a heavy-duty blender. Puree for 2-3 minutes or until the soup is completely smooth. Transfer the pureed soup back the pan and stir in the milk and the remaining 2 cups broth depending on how thick you want the soup to be. Season with salt and pepper.

 

September 19 or 22 CSA

Share contents:  1 pound of organic yellow corn grits from Farm and Sparrow, 1 pint of shishito peppers, 1 pint of okra, 2 butternut squash, 1 bulb of garlic, 2/3 pound of holey arugula, 1 head of frisee endive, 1 bunch of radish.

We also put 1 aji dulce pepper in your box.  These look like habaneros but ARE NOT.  They are barely spicy and have all the fruity flavor of habaneros.  Some people call them perfume peppers.

The arugula has lots of little holes in it compliments of an insect call flea beetle.  It is still good to eat and makes an excellent salad addition, pizza topping, pesto, tossed with caramelized garlic and pasta.

The corn grits are not from corn we grew.  Just thought it would be exciting to get them in a CSA box while our variety is low.  We did just harvest a corn variety we grew this year for grits so those will come along next summer…

Frisee and Radish Salad (adjusted from Chez Panisse cookbook)

ingredients for dressing:  1 lemon, Meyer or other variety, 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, 2 shallots, black pepper and salt.

to make the dressing:  peel and chop the shallots very fine, put them in a salad bowl, cover with the lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest , and let sit for 20 minutes.  Whisk in the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Add a splash of red or white wine vinegar if you’d like.

Wash the radishes, remove the tops and chop them very fine.  Slice the radishes in thin slices.  Cut the butt away from the frisee and wash the leaves well.  Spin dry and tear into pieces of your desired size.

Just before serving, toss all ingredients together with enough dressing to coat them, adjust seasoning as needed.

A thinly sliced apple, thinly sliced fennel, or pear is a good addition to this salad.

 

Shishito Peppers with Goat Cheese

First, de-seed and chop finely the aji dulce pepper.  Set aside.

In a hot cast iron skillet with a light coating of oil, char the shishito peppers whole.  You’ll need to turn them so that all sides get charred.  When all sides are blistered looking, remove from the skillet to a plate.

If you have a sweet onion around, you can do the same thing with it and add to the plate.

Sprinkle with salt, the diced aji dulce, and crumbles of goat cheese ( a little marjoram, seaweed, black pepper, nutritional yeast are good too).  Serve with good bread, crackers, flat bread.

There is a more complicated version of this recipe in the Bar Tartine Cookbook.  And another on Martha Stewart’s website.

 

September 12 and 15 CSA

Share contents: 3 pounds of red potatoes, 1 pound of red onion, 1 pound kale, 1 bunch of baby hakurei turnips, 1 pound of miniature eggplant, 1 1/2 pounds peppers (none hot).

We are still in the lull between summer and fall.  There should be more greens, arugula, radishes, lettuces coming…lets hope the rains from this hurricane keep the creeks in their banks here.

We harvested a good haul of pumpkins yesterday that will be ready to eat in 3 weeks or so.  The picture is of the growing tip of a pumpkin vine.  Sweet potatoes are a couple weeks away from ready to harvest.  All the field tomatoes are taken down and the beds sown down in cover crop of winter peas, crimson clover and oats.

After this week, there are 5 more weeks of the regular season CSA.  I would like to get past whatever the effects of this storm are and then see if we feel like we can do an extended share this year.

2 nights ago I roasted some mini eggplant by cutting them in half lengthwise and drizzling with olive oil, salt and pepper; then roasting about 15 minutes in a 425 degree oven.  Then I made a sauce of: 3 tablespoons buttermilk, 1 tablespoon mayo, half a red jalapeno, a little lemon zest and juice of half a lemon, a pinch of smoked paprika and a little salt.  We dipped the eggplant (and roasted okra too) in the sauce.  Pretty good!

 

August 29 or September 1 CSA

Share contents:  1 pound Italian Flat green beans, 1 pound summer squash and/or zucchini, 1 bunch of carrots, 1 bunch of dill, 1 pound of red onions, sweet peppers, 1 pint of okra, 1 pint of cherry tomatoes.

The bean are string-less and sweet and tender.  This is the last of the summer squash.  We like it best sauteed in olive oil with a little red onion and salt n pepper.

Carrot Salad with Fresh Dill

(also good with blanched green beans)

scrub and/or peel carrots, cut in half lengthwise and boil until tender in salted water with a crushed clove of garlic

drain and cool to room temperature

toss with a little paprika, salt, a pinch of coriander and cayenne

toss together with lemon juice, olive oil, and chopped dill and set aside to marinate for an hour before serving (if adding blanched green beans, add those just before serving to keep them bright green)