October 14 or 17 CSA, Last one for 2020

Last share of the year contains: 1 bunch each of leeks, beets, carrots, hakurei turnips and 2 small heads of bibb lettuce, 1 bag of baby greens, 1 bulb of garlic. There is also a bag of sweet potatoes for each share to make up for the missed box in September.

The bag of sweet potatoes contains 3 pounds of Murasaki sweets which are white inside and not as sweet as the orange ones. The other 9 pounds are orange. These will store best in a dry place above 50 degrees. They will continue to get sweeter the longer they sit.

The greens of the turnips and beets are great for eating as well as the roots. You can prepare them as the recipe for the beet greens and pasta from a few weeks ago recommends. Or you can braise or steam them or add them to soup.

TURNIP and TURNIP GREEN SOUP from Alice Waters

1 yellow onion, 1 clove of garlic,1/2 T olive oil, 1/2 T unsalted butter, 1 bunch young turnips with greens, 1 bay leaf, 1/4 tsp thyme leaves, 1 small piece prosciutto or smoked bacon, 4 cups chicken stock (or veggie or water), salt n pepper, Parmesan cheese.

Peel and slice the onion and garlic thin. Put in a pot with olive oil and butter and 1 tablespoon of water and stew, covered, until soft and translucent. Trim off the stems and greens from the turnips and reserve the greens. Trim off their roots, slice the turnips thin and add them to the pot. Stew them for a few minutes, until they begin to soften. Add the bay leaf, thyme, prosciutto, stock, and s n p. Cover and simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes.

Wash the turnip greens and cut them into 1/2 inch wide strips and stir them into the soup. Simmer the soup for another 10 minutes or so, until the greens are soft and tender. Garnish the soup with a few curls of shaved Parmesan. serves 4

Thank you for being a part of our CSA this year. 2020 has been the toughest year of my life for many reasons. I know it has been tough for most of you as well. Thank you for showing up every week to get your vegetables. Thank you for giving meaning to our work. It is a pleasure to grow vegetables for you. I hope that this fall and all its beauty bring you some joy and rest.

October 7 or 10 csa

this weeks’ share contains: 3 pounds of fingerling potatoes, 2 pounds of orange sweet potatoes, 1 bunch of beets, 1 bunch of collards, 2 little gem lettuces and a small bag of salad greens (baby red russian kale and fun jen cabbage), 3/4 pound of Asian eggplant

The eggplant is great cut in half lengthwise and sprinkled with olive oil and salt n pepper and oven roasted until browned. Then serve it spread on good bread or made into a dip for raw vegetables. It is great in stir-fries as well.

The fingerlings will keep for a month or more in a cloth or paper bag in your refrigerator. They are great roasted, shredded for home-fries, chunked up in stew, or par boiled and smashed and fried. The bag they are in now is biodegradable and will break down in a week or two in your fridge.

Next week will be the last box of the year. Along with your regular box you will each get a box of sweet potatoes to make up for the missed box 2 weeks ago.

September 30 or october 3 csa

This weeks’ share contents: 1 pound of kale, 1 bunch baby red beets with greens, 1 watermelon radish, 1 bulb of fennel, 1 pound red onions, 1 bulb garlic, 4 pounds of Burgundy sweet potatoes.

The sweet potatoes are ready to eat and taste sweet. They will continue to get sweeter the longer they sit. Store them in a dry place above 55 degrees F. DO NOT REFRIGERATE. You will be getting more of these as well as 2 other varieties of sweet potatoes in future boxes.

Following are 2 recipes adapted from Chez Panisse Vegetables

Beet-Green Pasta

Beet greens cooked this way can also be served as a side dish, without the pasta. Also, you can steam the baby beets separately and add to the dish.

1/4 cup currants, 1 pound or so of beet greens, 1 small bunch of mint, 2 medium red onions, 2 to 3 cloves of garlic, 1 bay leaf, 1/2 cup EV olive oil, 1 pound dried fedelini pasta, salt and pepper.

Cover the currants with boiling water, let them soak for 15 minutes, and drain them. While they are soaking, wash the beet greens, strip the leaves from the stems, and cut the leaves into chiffonade. Chop the stems into 2 inch lengths. Stem the mint, wash the leaves, and chop them into chiffonade.

Put on a pot of salted water for pasta. Peel the onions and the garlic and chop them both fine. Saute them with the bay leaf over medium heat in 1/4 cup of the olive oil for about 5 minutes or until they are translucent. Add the beet leaves and stems and the currants and cook 5 minutes more, covered. Meanwhile, when the water has come to a boil, add the pasta. Uncover the beet greens, season with salt and pepper, and add the mint leaves. When the pasta is cooked, drain it and toss well with the sauce, moistening it with a ladle of the pasta water and the rest of the olive oil. Serve immediately.

For a slightly more piquant dish, add a splash of vinegar and a pinch of cayenne.

Radish and Fennel Salad

The recipe in the book calls for dandelion greens. I use the radish greens instead.

1 meyer or other variety of lemon, 2 shallots, 1/4 cup EV olive oil, salt and pepper, 1 bulb fennel, 1 watermelon radish (or several small radishes), optional: white wine vinegar.

Wash and spin dry the radish greens. Place them in a bowl and sprinkle lightly with salt. Gently massage them until they start to sweat a little. Let them sit while preparing the rest of the salad.

Peel a few strips of zest from the lemon and chop very fine to make about 1/2 teaspoon. Juice the lemon; there should be about 1/4 cup.

Peel and chop the shallots very fine, put them in a salad bowl, cover with the lemon juice and zest, and let sit for about 20 minutes. Whisk in the olive oil and season with pepper. Add a splash of white wine vinegar if you like.

Trim the tops of the fennel where the leaves begin. Slice very thin with a knife or mandolin. Cut the radish in half and slice into thin half moons. Rinse the radish greens that have been salted and squeeze as much water out as you can.

Toss all the ingredients together with enough of the dressing to coat them. Taste to see if you need salt or more pepper and serve immediately.

This salad is also good with shredded fresh beets and kalamata olives.

September 16 or 19 CSA

This weeks’ share includes: 1/2 pound baby greens, 2 garlic bulbs, 1 pound onions, 2 pounds fingerling potatoes, 2 pounds okra, 3/4 pound habanada peppers (NOT hot!).

The baby greens are kale, collards and baby pac choi. They’re great as salad greens or lightly sauteed.

The habanada peppers can be de-capped on the stem end and stuffed with sausage and cheese or potatoes and cheese and baked for a great appetizer. They can also be fermented and used to make a great pepper sauce. I add a few hot peppers to give it heat but its great without too. They can also be pickled in vinegar with or without okra.

To pickle the okra, wash it and pack firmly into jars. (2 pounds will make about 3 pints. If you add peppers as well, it will make about 2 quarts.) In each jar put 1-3 peeled cloves of garlic, several habanada peppers and 1 hot pepper per jar if you want it to be spicy. Make a brine of 1 cup apple cider or white vinegar, 2 cups water, 2 teaspoons dill seed, 2 teaspoons mustard seeds, and 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons salt. Bring the brine to a boil and pour hot liquid over okra. You can just tuck it away in your refrigerator with a lid on once the liquid has cooled or you can process it in a water bath for 10 minutes. Either way, let it sit for several weeks before eating for optimal deliciousness.

The process of fermenting the peppers is one that I cannot put into words and instruction well here. There are 2 resources I use for fermentation instruction. They are Sandor Katz’ Wild Fermentation and The Noma Guide to Fermentation. I am not always successful but naturally fermented hot sauces are my favorite kind so I keep trying. Loosely, I use a 5.4% brine solution to ferment ( 3 tablespoons non-iodized salt dissolve in 1 quart of water).

September 9 or 12 CSA

Share contents this week;

1 pound of turkey red wheat flour (there will be cornmeal for those who are gluten free, just ask), 1&1/2 pound sweet peppers, 1 bunch leeks, 1 bunch turnip greens, 1 bunch radishes, 1/4 pound bird’s beak peppers, 1 bunch basil.

This is probably the last batch of basil for the year.

The turnip greens are from the mild hakurei turnips and are great raw as a salad green or lightly cooked or added to pesto.

The birds beak peppers are packed with fruity flavor, barely spicy, and make a great side mixed with other peppers onions and herbs. They’re good sauteed whole too and served with fish or grits. We haven’t been de-seeding them and the seeds are easy to eat and not bitter. They are great pickled too.

Sweet Pepper and Leek Sauce

de-seed and chop 1&1/2 pounds sweet peppers, cut the leeks into half moons 1/4 inch thick and wash them

In a deep skillet or dutch oven over medium high, heat enough olive oil to cover bottom of the pan. Add the leeks and saute until they start to get translucent. Add the peppers and some salt. Stir and let the two cook together until very soft. You can turn down the heat and put on a lid. When soft enough, puree leeks and peppers and return to a saucepan. Add several basil leaves, freshly ground black pepper, a little crushed red pepper if you like spice and let all this cook over low together for about 30 minutes. When you are about to serve it, add a few tablespoons of heavy cream. We eat this over penne pasta or potato patties.