News and Events

  • October 30th, 2011
It’s really hard to believe that this concludes my weekly entry of recipes for the harvest!  I hope you enjoy a great bowl of soup made with the poblanos and cilantro, some wonderful pumpkin muffins to celebrate the season, the lush salads of spinach and mixed lettuces, young kale, winter squashes, and dressed with a sampling of honey from the farm!  Enjoy cooking as we have enjoyed planting, tilling, and harvesting all season long!  Cheers to great times in the fields and kitchen!

Lean Green Chicken Chili

as found on www.food.com and in a Pampered Chef recipe book.

This was pretty good—I added some sour cream as a garnish and it helped “tame the heat” for the kids (and me!).   It’s a great way to use the fresh poblanos and cilantro.

  • 8 (6 inch) corn tortillas, divided
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 cup chopped poblano peppers ( 1-2 medium)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 2 (14 ounce) cans reduced-fat chicken broth
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 1/4 cups salsa verde (green salsa) or 1 (10 ounce) cans green enchilada sauce
  • 2 tablespoons minced cilantro

 

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Cut 4 tortillas in half and stack them one on top of the other. Cut into 1/2-inch strips & toss with 1 teaspoon oil.
  3. Spread tortilla strips in a single layer in a baking pan. Bake 10-12 minutes or until crisp, stirring once. Remove from oven and set aside.
  4. Fold each of the remaining 4 tortillas into quarters & and coarsely grate using a box grater or your favorite method. Set aside. (Cook’s note – I opted to just finely chop the tortillas rather than grating).
  5. Toss chicken pieces with cumin.
  6. Heat remaining 1 teaspoon of oil in a large soup pan, add chicken and cook 5 minutes. Remove chicken.
  7. Add poblano peppers, onion and garlic to pan. Cook and stir 3 minutes.
  8. Stir in chicken, broth, beans, salsa and grated tortillas.
  9. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to simmer, uncovered, 15 minutes.
  10. Stir in cilantro, ladle into soup bowls and top with baked tortilla strips.

 

Spinach Salad

(1992 Southern Living Annual Recipes)

1 pound fresh spinach

1 apple, unpeeled, cored, and cut into thin wedges

2 tablespoons lemon juice

3 green onions, sliced

1 (2 ounce) package sliced almonds, toasted

2 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (optional)

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

2 to 3 teaspoons sugar

3/4 teaspoon dry mustard

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Remove stems from spinach; wash leaves thoroughly, and pat dry.  Tear into bite-sized pieces.  Toss apple wedges in lemon juice; drain.  Combine spinach, apple wedges, green onions, and almonds; toss with bacon, if desired.  Combine oil and remaining ingredients in a jar.  Cover tightly and shake vigorously.  Before serving, pour dressing over spinach mixture; toss.  Yield: 6 servings.

 

Perfectly Perfect Pumpkin Cheesecake (from Tasty Kitchen).

Melissa Ballard, farmer and friend, made this cheesecake —-it was heavenly!  The meal she fixed was great….but this dessert was unbelievable!  Sounds timely, but it was worth it!!!

Ingredients

  • FOR THE CRUST:
  • 1-¾ cup Gingersnap Cookie Crumbs (from About 40 Gingersnap Wafers)
  • 3 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • ½ teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoons Salt
  • 4 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, Melted And Slightly Cooled Down

 

  • FOR THE FILLING:
  • 24 ounces, weight Regular Cream Cheese (not Low Fat Or Nonfat), At Room Temperature
  • 15 ounces, weight Pureed Pumpkin (not Pumpkin Pie Filling)
  • 3 whole Large Eggs
  • 1 whole Egg Yolk
  • ¼ cups Sour Cream
  • 1-½ cup Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoons Ground Ginger
  • ⅛ teaspoons Ground Nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoons Ground Cloves
  • ¼ teaspoons Salt
  • 2 Tablespoons All-purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a 9″ springform pan by lightly spraying with cooking spray.

For the crust, pulse the cookies in a food processor until the crumbs are uniform. Add the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt and pulse to combine. Transfer to a medium bowl and add the melted butter. Combine thoroughly with a fork. When the mixture is evenly moist, crumbly, and holds together when you squeeze a handful, it’s ready. Press the mixture evenly over the bottom, and very slightly up the sides, of your springform pan. Chill for 5 minutes, then bake for 10 minutes. Let cool completely.

Prepare a water bath while the crust cools. Heat a kettle or pan of water to a soft boil. Have a larger baking dish or roasting pan ready to set the springform pan inside it. Once the crust is cooled, set the springform pan on a double layer of heavy duty aluminum foil and wrap the foil up around the outside of the pan.

For the filling, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the pumpkin puree and combine. Add the eggs and egg yolk, one at a time, incorporating each egg thoroughly before adding the next, and scraping down the sides of the bowl after each one. Beat in the sour cream. Then add the sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and flour. Beat just until combined, then beat in the vanilla.

Scrape the filling into the cooled crust and spread evenly. Set the springform pan in the larger roasting pan and add enough hot water from the kettle to come about halfway up the sides of the springform pan.

Bake until the top of the cheesecake is a deep golden color and the center is set, about 1 hour 30 minutes to 1 hour 40 minutes. It’s ok if there is a slight jiggle to the filling. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and run a thin-bladed knife between the crust and the pan sides, to prevent the cake from cracking as it cools. Let the cheesecake cool to room temperature in the pan on a wire rack. Cover and chill for at least four hours or overnight before serving. Top individual slices with fresh whipped cream.

 

Roasted butternut and/or acorn squash, Rachel Ray

3 medium butternut or acorn squash, cut in half, seeds removed

6 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces and softened

1/2 cup maple syrup

Freshly grated nutmeg

Freshly ground black pepper

 

Pre-heat the oven to 400°F.  Place butternut squash halves on a large baking sheet with the cut-side up. Divide the butter pieces among all six halves, smearing it all over the cut side of the squash.

Drizzle each half with maple syrup and season with freshly grated nutmeg and ground black pepper. Roast the squash for 40-60 minutes, or until the flesh is tender when poked with a fork. You can serve each person a whole half each or you can scoop out the flesh into a serving bowl – whatever makes you and yours happy.  Serves 6.

 

Thanksgiving Pumpkin Muffins (Paula Deen’s My First Cookbook)

 

(There’s no need to hurry up to use your pumpkins—they will keep nicely for a while as decoration, then when you are in the mood to celebrate the season, just cook one up for puree).

These would be great for a lunchbox snack!

What you’ll need:

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon allspice

3/4 cup light brown sugar

3 tablespoons molasses

1/4 cup canola oil

2 large eggs

15 ounces of pureed pumpkin

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup buttermilk

 

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.  Spray 15 muffin cups with baking spray or place cupcake liners in muffin pans.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and allspice.  In another bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, molasses, oil, eggs, pumpkin, vanilla, and buttermilk.  Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir together just until combined.  Don’t overmix!  Muffin batter should be lumpy.   Lade the batter evenly into the muffin cups, filling them about three-fourths full.  Tap the pans on the counter to make sure you get all the air bubbles out.  Bake for 20 minutes.   Have an adult help you take the pans out of the oven using oven mitts or hot pads.  Put the pans on a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes.  Run a butter knife around the muffins so that you can loosen them from the pans.  Let them cool completely on the wire rack.  Makes 15 muffins.

 

This week’s honey–it was gathered from the blooms of our vegetable plants!! It has been so neat to watch and learn about the wonders of honeybees this year!  Evidently in the first year of a hive, you are not supposed to expect to be able to gather any honey.  Due to the timing of the rains, the chances for lots of honey were slim, according to our beekeeper.  However, much to his and our surprise, we were able to get a little bit off of the hives while leaving plenty honey to feed the bees over the winter.  All of our CSA families and us got enough to sample—so if you are like me, you will use a little here and a little there to savor the flavors!  We are hoping we’ll get to harvest lots more from these amazing insects next year.

 

As this concludes the season of recipes for now, let me know if you come across a good one this winter—for posting when the ingredients are fresh or even for recipes using something you’ve put up.  We love sharing good tastes!

 

From our farm kitchen to yours, happy eating!
Mary

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • October 19th, 2011

With one week remaining of the CSA, we chose to combine a few items from summer along with items that are true to fall.  Everyone will get to enjoy a meal or two of freshly-picked greens—as we are planning for collards and turnip greens for everyone this week.  You will continue a beautiful assortment of winter squashes–and know that we encourage you to use as decoration until you are ready to prepare.  These are the last of the green (and yellow wax) beans, beautiful eggplants, an assortment of summer squashes, we even have had a second harvest of small cantaloupes (granted they aren’t quite as nice and sweet as during the peak of summer, but none the less you know where they are from!).  A lot was harvested today by “drowned rats” as the showers came in—it sounds like they will be here for a few days.  Please know that a lot of efforts have gone into this week’s share…trying to give you an ending of the seaso with a few weeks to remember.

Brain-boosting Grilled Eggplant and Red Onion Bruschetta

www.doctoroz.com

This brain-boosting bruschetta is an easy and delicious way to keep your memory sharp. Quarcetin from the red onions helps your brain perform at its best; nasunin, found in eggplant, protects the fats around brain cells. Lastly, rosemary’s wonderful aroma has been shown to improve memory.

1 1/2 cups roughly chopped grilled eggplant

1 cup roughly chopped grilled red onion

2 tbsp rosemary, chopped

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 tbsp olive oil

Toasted bread slices

In a medium to large bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well. Let the mixture rest for 30 minutes, so flavors can develop.

Serve on toasted bread slices.

 

Super Eggplant Subs

Rachel Ray, Cooking ‘Round the Clock, 30-Minute Meals and on www.foodnetwork.com

1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, eyeball it

2 large cloves cracked garlic, 2 cloves chopped garlic

2 medium eggplant, firm

Coarse salt and black pepper

1/2 red onion, chopped

1 (28-ounce) can chopped fire roasted tomatoes (recommended: Muir Glen)

1 small (8-ounce) can tomato sauce

4 sub rolls, split

1 cup fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced or torn

1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

1 pound smoked mozzarella, thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Heat a small pan with extra-virgin olive oil and cracked garlic in it over medium low flame. Trim ends of eggplants and remove a sliver of the skin off of 1 side, so the eggplant sits flat for you to slice it. Cut the eggplant into 1/2-inch thick slices. Arrange the eggplant on cookie sheets. When garlic sizzles in oil, using a pastry brush, brush both sides of sliced eggplant. Season eggplant with salt and pepper and roast in hot oven 15 minutes or until tender. Turn eggplant once.

Take a couple of tablespoons of remaining extra-virgin olive oil and place in a second pan, a medium skillet, over medium high heat. To hot garlic oil, add remaining chopped garlic and red onions. Saute the red onions and garlic 2 to 3 minutes then add chopped fire roasted tomatoes and tomato sauce then season with salt and pepper. Lower heat and allow sauce to thicken.

Remove eggplant from the oven. Get split sub rolls ready to fill, arranging the split rolls on a broiler pan. Preheat broiler to melt cheese on subs. Pile layers of cooked eggplant, roasted tomato sauce and torn basil into sub rolls, equally dividing ingredients. Top subs with grated cheese and smoked mozzarella cheese. Melt cheeses under the broiler. Serve subs hot.

Ratatouille

www.allrecipes.com   This is a great recipe to use many vegetables this week—and you can subsitute where needed or pull some out of the freezer!

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dried parsley
  • 1 eggplant, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • salt to taste
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 zucchini, sliced
  • 1 large onion, sliced into rings
  • 2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 2 large tomatoes, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Coat bottom and sides of a 1 1/2 quart casserole dish with 1 tablespoon olive oil.
  2. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic until lightly browned. Mix in parsley and eggplant. Saute until eggplant is soft, about 10 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
  3. Spread eggplant mixture evenly across bottom of prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with a few tablespoons of Parmesan cheese. Spread zucchini in an even layer over top. Lightly salt and sprinkle with a little more cheese. Continue layering in this fashion, with onion, mushrooms, bell pepper, and tomatoes, covering each layer with a sprinkling of salt and cheese.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.

(I like to saute the onions and peppers a little first—and if I have any pizza sauce on hand, I’ll add a little of that also.)

Greens

These are a very healthy vegetable!  You can often mix and match greens, or prepare them separately.  To store—put in zip-lock bag, unwashed and let as much air escape prior to closing.  Store in refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Collard Greens (These are the flat greens this week)

5-Minute Collard Greens

Collard greens are a highly nutritious green rich in calcium that are a great addition to your Healthiest Way of Eating. Long popular in the southern states, you will find out why they are becoming increasingly popular throughout the rest of the U.S.

1 pound collard greens, chopped

Mediterranean Dressing

1 tsp lemon juice

1 medium clove garlic, pressed or chopped

1 TBS extra virgin olive oil

sea salt and black pepper to taste

1-1/2 TBS sunflower seeds

1/2 red onion, sliced (add to steamers with collard greens)

6 kalamata olives, sliced

3 TBS pumpkin seeds

5 drops tamari soy sauce

dash of cayenne pepper

  1. Fill bottom of steamer with 2 inches of water.
  2. While steam is building up, slice collard greens leaves into 1/2-inch slices and cut again crosswise. Cut stems into 1/4-inch slices. Let both leaves and stems sit for at least 5 minutes to enhance their health-promoting properties.
  3. Press or chop garlic and let sit for at least 5 minutes to bring out more of its health-promoting properties.
  4. Steam collard greens for no more than 5 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a bowl. For more flavor, toss collard greens with the remaining ingredients and any of the optional ingredients you desire while they are still hot. (Mediterranean Dressing does not need to be made separately).  Serves 2

 

Christmas Collards,

from Southern Farmers Market Cookbook, Holly Herrick

Collards are the South’s most celebrated green.  Here’s a recipe that is lip-smacking “good enough” for Christmas dinner, but simple enough for a weeknight side dish.

2 large bunches of collards

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 (1-inch-thick) slab salt pork

1 small onion, halved and thinly sliced

generous pinch of allspice

salt and freshly ground pepper

1 cup chicken stock

1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Rinse the collards thoroughly and then de-stem (just hold the stem and wrap your thumb and forefinger around the stem with your other hand and strip the leaves away from stem). Stack the leaves in small piles and slice the collards into 1 inch squares.  Meanwhile, heat the oil and salt pork in a large sturdy pot over medium-high heat.  Add the onions and saute until tender, about 3 minutes.  Add the greens, allspice, salt, pepper, and stock.  Cover and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the greens are very tender, about 45 minutes.

Just before serving, add the vinegar and heat through.Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.  Remove ham and salt pork and discard, or, if desired, slice the pork and stir it into the dish.  Serve immediately.  Serves 4-6.

 

Turnip Greens (these are the ones whose leaves look like radish leaves…quite textured).

Wash the greens well.  If you have any large stems in your bunch, de-stem them.  Put 1 quart of water for every 2 pounds of greens into a pot.  Use 1/4 to 1/2 pound of salted pork for this amount.  Cut the pork into 1/4” strips and drop into the cold water.  Bring to a boil and simmer the meat by itself for 30 minutes, then add the greens.  Cover the pot and heat to boiling again and let the turnip tops wither down.  Turn the mess over in the pot once to complete the withering process.  When this has been done, press the leaves down under the surface of the water and continue cooking uncovered for another 30 to 45 minutes or until the greens are tender.  The actual time depends on the age and tenderness of the greens (the ones you are getting this week are young).  If you need to add more water to keep the greens covered, add boiling water.  This is from Crissy Gregg’s Cook Book, from Kentucky Keepsakes.

 

Saute of Green Beans and Roasted Peppers in a Catalina Sauce with fresh goat cheese and almonds (GREAT for kids)

1 red bell pepper

1 green bell pepper

3 cups fresh green beans, snapped and rinsed

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/3 cup coarsely chopped almonds

1/4 cup top-quality Catalina or French dressing (home-made is best)

Salt and freshly ground pepper

4 ounces fresh goat cheese

Roast the whole peppers under a hot broiler, turning  at quarter points, until they are charred all over.  Run the peppers under cold water and remove skins, seeds, and cores.  Pat the peppers dry and cut into julienne strips. Bring a large pot of generously salted water toa boil over high heat.  Blanche the beans until just tender, plunging all at once into rapidly boiling water and cooking for about 3 minutes.   Drain, then rinse beans in very cold water until they’re cool.  Drain and set aside or store overnight in the refrigerator for later use. When close to serving, saute the garlic in the oil in a large saute pan over medium-low heat until softened, about 3 minutes.  Increase the heat to medium-high.  Add the almonds, blanched green beans, dressing, salt, and pepper.  Toss and heat through for about 2 minutes.  Season and drizzle each serving with crumbled fresh goat cheese.  Serve immediately.  Note:  This could also be chilled and served later over fresh greens tossed in a big more dressing.

(courtesy of Southern Farmers Market Cookbook, Holly Herrick)

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • October 13th, 2011

This week the CSA shares are beautiful!  The freshness of colorful yellow and green beans, tender lettuce, young swiss chards, winter squashes, and end of the season tomatoes, sprinkled with radishes or specialty squashes.  Next week we are expecting a beautiful selection again of fall items!  There is a lot of diversity here with comfort foods along with the freshness of crisp salads and raw green beans that will make you stop and say “thank you for fresh food”!

Pumpkin Dip (for breads or cookies)

For those of you whom enjoyed the spread that accompanied the pumpkin bread on Sunday, here’s the recipe:

1 – 8 ounce package of cream cheese, softened

1- 18 ounce can of pumpkin pie mix (or the equivalent of fresh pumpkin + 1 tsp. ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. of ground ginger, 1/4 tsp. ground cloves)

2 cups of confectioner’s sugar

1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

Beat cream cheese in a mixing bowl until smooth.  Add pumpkin pie mix; beat well.  Add sugar, cinnamon, and ginger; beat until smooth.  Serve with cookies or bread.  Store leftover dip in the refrigerator.  (Makes 3 cups)

 

Butternut Squash-White Bean Stew

www.relishmag.com

Prep Time - 5 Cook Time - 45

tablespoons olive oil

cup slivered onion

3/4  cup thinly sliced celery

cups mushrooms, halved

cups cubed, peeled butternut squash

(14-ounce) can diced fire-roasted tomatoes

clove garlic, pressed

cups water

tablespoons tomato paste

3/4  teaspoon dried rosemary, crumbled

1/2  teaspoon coarse salt

1/8  teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

(15-ounce) cans Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained

Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (optional)

 

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery and mushrooms. Cook until vegetables start to brown, about 8 minutes.  Stir in squash, tomatoes, garlic, water, tomato paste, rosemary, salt and pepper. Mix well. Cover and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat and simmer until squash is tender, about 25 minutes. Uncover, stir in beans and simmer until stew consistency, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley, if desired.

Butternut /Acorn Squash Spice Loaf

I discovered this recipe last year and it was a huge hit every time I made it.  I really think you could use any type of winter squash or pie pumpkins for this.

1 butternut squash, or 2 acorn squash (or combination of the two)

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened

2 large eggs

2 cups self-rising flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 cup chopped pecans (I used almonds)

Cut squash in half lengthwise; remove seeds.  Place cut side down in a shallow pan; add water to the depth of 1/2 inch.  Cover with foil, and bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour or until tender.  Scoop out pulp; mash.  Discard shell.  Measure 1 -3/4 cups pulp; reserve any remaining pulp for other uses.  Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating mixture well.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.  Combine flour and spices; add to butter mixture alternately with squash, beginning and ending with flour mixture.  Stir in pecans.  Spoon into a greased and floured 9-x 5-x 3-inch loafpan; bake at 350 for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool in pan on wire rack 10 minutes.  Remove from pan, and let cool on wire rack.

Butternut Squash Gratin

We should begin harvesting spinach next week, so if you want to use the butternut for decor for a week, hold out for this recipe!

(Better Homes and Garden, clipped recipe in 2003, by Becki Hagerman)

1-3/4 to 2 pounds butternut squash

1 tablespoon olive oil

Salt and ground black pepper

16 cups fresh spinach

1 cup half-and-half or light cream

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup creme fraiche*

Preheat oven to 425 degree F. Lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish; set aside. Peel the squash. Slice to 1/4-inch thickness. Remove seeds from slices and halve large slices. Arrange slices in a 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Brush both sides lightly with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Bake, uncovered, 20 minutes. Remove. Increase oven temperature to 475 degree F.

Meanwhile in a 4- to 6-quart Dutch oven cook the spinach in lightly salted boiling water, half at a time, for 1 minute or until wilted. Drain and cool slightly; squeeze out excess liquid. Coarsely chop the spinach; set aside. In a medium saucepan combine half-and-half and cornstarch; cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Stir in spinach; spread mixture in bottom of prepared dish. Arrange squash over spinach mixture.  In a small bowl stir together Parmesan cheese and creme fraiche. Spread mixture over squash in dish. Bake, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until squash is tender and topping is lightly browned. Season to taste with salt and pepper, if desired. Makes 8 servings. Note: To make your own creme fraiche, in small bowl stir together 1/4 cup whipping cream (not ultrapasteurized) and 1/4 cup dairy sour cream. Cover with plastic wrap. Let stand at room temperature for 2 to 5 hours or until mixture thickens. When thickened, cover and chill in the refrigerator until serving time or up to 48 hours. Stir before serving.

 

Stuffed Acorn Squash

(allrecipes.com)

1 cup shredded zucchini

1/2 cup crushed saltines

1/3 cup ketchup

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoons dried minced onion

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

3/4 pound ground beef

2 large acorn squash

In a medium bowl, combine the first nine ingredients. Add beef; mix well. Cut squash in half; remove and discard the seeds. Fill with meat mixture. Place in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Cover and bake at 400 degrees F for 1 hour or until squash is tender. Uncover and bake for 10 minutes.  (You may want to go light on ketchup if you aren’t a big ketchup fan and a little cheese on top is a nice addition, too).

 

Here’s a great way to utilize “end of the season tomatoes”!

Tomato Gravy,

Flavors of Kentucky, Sharon Thompson, pg. 85

4 slices of bacon

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 medium onion, chopped

14 and 1/2 ounce can diced tomatoes (during the season, dice the equivalent fresh)

Water

Cooked rice

Fry the bacon in a skillet until crisp (cast iron if you have one).  Remove the bacon and save for another use. Pour off all but about 2 tablespoons of the grease.  Add the flour.  Cook for several minutes over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture, known as a roux, is medium brown.  Add the onion, tomatoes and a can of water to the roux and stir.  Simmer until thick.  Serve over the cooked rice.  Makes 4 servings.

 

 

The tomatoes that are still nice and firm, you’ve got to let them accompany the salad.  If there are others that aren’t so pretty, enjoy them as a side dish….warm, comfort food of fall, right?!

 

Escalloped Tomatoes

4 large fresh tomatoes

2 cups of soft bread crumbs, toasted

2 T. butter

1 medium onion, chopped

3/4 t. salt

1  T. sugar

Peel your tomatoes with the toasted bread crumbs and stir in butter, onion, salt and sugar.  Turn into casserole.  Bake in a moderate oven at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.  Makes 5 servings. (Kentucky Keepsakes, Elizabeth Ross)

 

I think the Black-Seeded Simpson goes great with French Dressing.

Here is a quick home-made dressing recipe that you are bound to enjoy—-light and delicious!  Again, compliments of Sharon Thompson, Flavors of Kentucky.  I made this the other day and quite frankly, can’t wait till lunch-time again to have it!

1/3 cup of sugar

1/3 cup of ketchup

1/3 cup of vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup canola oil

1 clove garlic

Combine the sugar, ketchup, vinegar and salt in a blender.  Slowly add the oil with the blender on medium speed.  Pour the dressing into a pint jar.  Split the clove of garlic and drop it into the dressing.  Place the lid on the jar and refrigerate.  Shake the jar before serving.  Be careful when pouring dressing so the garlic clove remains in the jar.  Makes 1 pint.

 

Sweet and Sour Green Beans

Now I will say, that these green beans are beautiful and I could eat a whole bag of them raw.  But if you’d like to cook them…here’s a recipe with a twist…

4 cups (or 1 quart) of green beans

4 slices of bacon

2 medium onions, sliced

1 tablespoon dry mustard

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons brown sugar

2 tablespoons sugar

1/4 cup vinegar

Cook the green beans in water to cover in a saucepan until tender. Drain, reserving one cup of the liquid.  Fry the bacon in a skillet until crisp.  Remove the bacon to paper towels to drain.  Drain the skillet.  Add the onions to the skillet.  Saute until brown and transparent.  Stir in the dry mustard, salt, brown sugar and sugar.  Add the reserved liquid and vinegar.  Bring to a boil.  Add the green beans and bacon.  Simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.  Serve with a slotted spoon.   (from: Pride of Kentucky)

 

Honey-Glazed Wax Beans

(www.epicurious.com)

for the beautiful golden wax beans this week, you may want to enjoy them really fresh in this light recipe!

1 1/4 pounds wax (yellow) or green beans, trimmed

1 tablespoon mild honey

3/4 teaspoon finely grated fresh lemon zest

1/4 teaspoon salt

Cook beans in a 4-quart pot of boiling salted water until just tender, 6 to 8 minutes. Drain in a colander, then immediately toss with honey, zest, and salt in a large bowl.  6 servings.

 

Bacon and Swiss Chard Pasta

by The Bon Appétit Test Kitchen, May 2008

1 pound linguine

12 ounces bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices

1 very large red onion, halved, sliced (about 6 cups)

2 large bunches Swiss chard, stemmed, chopped (about 12 cups)

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook linguine in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, cook bacon in heavy large pot over medium heat until beginning to crisp, about 10 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Drain all but 2 tablespoons bacon drippings from skillet. Add onion and saute over medium-high heat until softened, about 7 minutes. Add Swiss chard and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add pasta cooking liquid to skillet. Toss until chard is wilted and tender, about 4 minutes. Sprinkle vinegar over; cook 1 minute.

Add linguine and oil to sauce in pot and toss to coat. Transfer to large bowl. Sprinkle with bacon and cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

From our Fields to your Dinner Table, Enjoy!!

Mary and Crew

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • October 05th, 2011

As I flipped the calendar over this weekend, it’s hard to believe this is the last month of our CSA this season.  I guess time flies when you (we) are having fun!   We were hoping the lettuce would be ready to cut for this week, but it’s not.  So, postponing our fresh salads, we get to enjoy other tastes of fall this week with pumpkins and apples, greens, along with a few other tail-end harvests of summer.  I’m sure your kitchen will be smelling like fall so no need for the scented candles with a bag of goodies like this.  The apples alone bring sugar into the air!  We know you will enjoy. 

Speaking of apples—-you have a beautiful selection from Mulberry Orchard, our friends Matt and Amanda.  If you are in the area this fall (Friday through Sunday) you really need to treat yourself to some of their apple cider!  You can take a hay ride out to the pumpkin patch, enjoy a cider smoothie or even apple cider donuts.  

I had a good time collecting recipes for this week because of the variety and changing season.

We were at my parents’ house on Sunday and Mama was so excited to share this recipe she had clipped.  How appropriate for the season!  I can’t give credit where credit is due ‘cause I’m not sure which farming magazine it came from….but sounds wonderful and think it would fill the house with a sweet aroma as it cooks!

Cider-Braised Spicy Pork Stew

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

2 pounds boneless pork shoulder or pork butt, cut into 1 inch pieces

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 large onion, coarsely chopped

1 cup apple cider

1 cup chicken broth

1 tablespoon dried or fresh chopped parsley

2 ½ teaspoons original Tabasco brand pepper sauce

3 cups butternut squash chunks (or any type of winter squash)

2 cups brussels sprouts, each cut in half if needed

1 large apple, peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped  (Apples from Mulberry Orchard are a must!!!)

 Combine flour and salt in a bowl; add pork pieces.  Toss to coat well.  Heat oil in 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook pork pieces in batches until well browned on all sides. Repeat with remaining pork.  Remove pork to slow cooker.  Add onion, apple cider, chicken broth, parsley and Tabasco sauce.  Cover and cook on high for two hours or on low for four hours.  Stir in squash, brussels sprouts and apple.   Cover and cook two hours longer, stirring occasionally.  Serve with crusty bread.  Makes six servings.

 

How to Cook Pumpkin

I have to say that last fall I fell in love with cooking pumpkin.  Don’t really know what it was, but found it very rewarding.  Maybe it’s because of the taste of pumpkin is a taste of comfort to me—-remembering Thanksgiving with my family—-one of my favorite days of the year for sure!  I’d bake it and puree and pop in yogurt containers to have when we were ready for pie.

Baking is the most reliable and easiest method for cooking pumpkin.  Simply take the pumpkin or squash, cut it in half, remove the seeds and pulp, and place both sections face down on a cookie sheet. Bake for 30 minutes (or more for larger pumpkins) at about 350 degrees. A fork should easily pierce the skin and flesh.  After cooling, spoon out the now soft flesh and use as you would canned pumpkin (you may wish to puree it at this point, or add some water to adjust the consistency).   With the pumpkin in this solid form, it can be used immediately, refrigerated (for about a week), or frozen (for up to a year).

Pumpkin Spice with Nutmeg, makes 8 tsp.

Mix together: 4 tsp. cinnamon, 2 tsp. ground ginger, 1 tsp. allspice, and 1 tsp. nutmeg.

Pumpkin Spice with Cloves, makes 6 tsp.

Mix together: 4 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. ground ginger, 1/2 tsp. ground cloves, 1/2 tsp. allspice.

Brother Boniface’s Pumpkin Bread (from Southern Living),

compliments of CSA member and farmer, Melissa Ballard

 4 C all purpose flour

3 C sugar

2 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp ground nutmeg

1/2 tsp ground allspice

1/2 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp ground ginger

4 large eggs

1 C vegetable oil

1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin (or farm fresh, of course)

2/3 cup water

1 C chopped pecans – I use these sometimes and leave them out sometimes

 Beat first 14 ingredients at medium speed with an electric mixer just until dry ingredients are moistened.  Fold in pecans (if you are using).  Spoon evenly into 2 greased and floured 9 x 5 inch loafpans.  Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks.

 

Pumpkin Pie-cicles

2 1/2 lbs. butternut squash or a pie pumpkin

1/2 cup pure maple syru

2/3 cup light cream

1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

 To make a batch, cut a butternut squash or pumpkin into quarters and scoop out the seeds.  Boil, bake, or microwave the squash until it’s soft. Let the squash cool a bit before scooping its flesh into a medium-size bowl.  Add pure maple syrup, light cream, and pumpkin pie spice to the bowl. Use a potato masher to mush the squash and blend all of the ingredients.  Spoon the mixture into ice pop molds (we were able to fill 10), add sticks, and freeze for at least 6 hours before serving.

 

A quick note on the kale….remember the kale we had before?  You won’t believe this comes from the same plants.  As it has cooled, the insect pressure has lessened, so the new, young leaves of the kale plants are ready for harvest and aren’t bug-bitten to shreds!   Kale, like our Swiss Chards is something that can be harvested repetitively since they re-grow their leaves.  Makes for a great item in the garden!

Sautéed Greens

1/2 cup diced onion

4 cups chopped kale

1 TBS + 1/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth

3 medium cloves garlic, pressed

1 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 TBS extra virgin olive oil

salt and black pepper to taste

Directions:

Heat 1 TBS broth in a 10-12 inch stainless steel skillet. Sauté diced onions in broth over medium- low heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add kale and 1/4 cup broth.  Cover and simmer on low heat for about 7-8 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Toss with pressed garlic, lemon juice, soy sauce, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Serves 2

 

What to do with the long, slender, Japanese eggplant??

The skins aren’t as thick and tough and the flesh is sweeter…enjoy!

 “Do a simple fresh herb, balsamic, olive oil marinade. slice them in half lengthwise and marinate and throw on the grill”

or

Wash the eggplant, trim off the caps, halve lengthwise, and place them in a greased baking dish.  Spray canola oil, and give the cut surfaces of the eggplant another spray to keep them moist in baking. Chop a big pile of garlic and sprinkle over the eggplant to your preferred density, then drizzle the eggplant with a bit of olive oil.  Grind fresh pepper over the top, and sprinkle with Cajun spice and/or a bit of salt.

 Optional additions:

scallions, parsley, etc can be chopped in with the garlic, chili powder, cumin, oregano, rosemary, or the spice/herb of your choice to sprinkle on top.

 Put the pan in a 350F oven for about 30-45 minutes. The eggplant will thin and curl on itself a bit, and the garlic will become a crisp and nutty brown on top. At this point you can remove the eggplant and eat them directly, but I prefer to shut off the oven and let them slowly cool. This extra hour sitting at low temperature dries the eggplant out a bit more, concentrating and mellowing the flavors.

 

 

Grilled Peppers and Veggies

(Everyday Grilling by Southern Living)

¾ cup olive oil

¼ cup red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh rosemary

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil

1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 medium yellow bell pepper

1 medium red bell pepper

1 medium green bell pepper

3 medium zucchini

2 large yellow onions

1 medium eggplant

 Combine first 8 ingredients in large bowl.  Cut bell peppers into large pieces, discarding seeds and membranes.  Cut zucchini in half crosswise, then each piece in half lengthwise.  Cut onions crosswise into 1/3-inch slices.  Slice eggplant crosswise into ½-inch slices.  Add vegetables to marinate; too to coat.  Marinate at room temperature for 2 hours.  Remove vegetables from marinade, reserving marinade.  Grill over Direct Medium heat until tender and charred, about 10 to 12 minutes, basting occasionally with reserved marinade.  Serve vegetables warm, at room temperature, or cover and chill up to 24 hours.  Yield: 6 to 8 servings.

 

 

Poblano Peppers

Want an authentic Mexican meal?  Try this with your toppings of choice and side of rice and beans.

 Chiles Rellenos (Stuffed Peppers),

compliments of www.allrecipes.com

4 fresh poblano chile peppers

1/2 pound lean ground beef

1 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

salt and pepper to taste

3 eggs, separated

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

2 roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup corn oil

 Place whole peppers over an open flame (gas burner) or under the broiler. Roast, turning frequently until evenly black and blistered. Remove from heat, place in a plastic bag, and let them sweat for a while. This will allow the skins to peel of easily.While the peppers are sweating, place the ground beef in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring to crumble, until evenly browned. When beef is fully cooked, add the onion, garlic and tomato, and cook for a few more minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Remove the peppers from the bag, and peel off the burnt skin. You may wish to wear protective gloves. Run peppers under cool running water to rinse away any burnt pieces. Make a small vertical slit in the side of the peppers, and remove the seeds and veins. Stuff each pepper halfway with the ground beef mixture, then fill the rest of the way with shredded cheese. Close the slits, and secure with toothpicks.  Whip egg whites in a large glass or metal bowl until thick and fluffy. Add the egg yolks, and whip for a minute to blend in.  Meanwhile, heat 1/4 inch of oil in a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Coat the stuffed peppers with a light dusting of flour, then dip them in the egg so they are fully covered. Carefully place in the hot oil, and fry on both sides until golden. Drain on paper towels, then serve on a large platter. (or you may want to add a little enchilada sauce and/or cheese then warm for 10 minutes in the oven at 275F.)

Enjoy the good, hearty meals of real food from a real farm!  Thanks for the honor.

Lovin’ growin’ for you, 

Mary and extended family of workers

 



Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • September 27th, 2011

What a surprise!  I had really set myself up for a disappointment with brussel sprouts this season.  Last year they were so beautiful and this year…not so much.   The plants have just been more scrony.  However, I guess there is always hope and optimism in the heart of a farmer, so we kept giving them TLC….and we got ‘em.  We began cutting brussel sprout plants today and popping off the little jewels.  They aren’t beautiful and uniform like what you will find in the frozen food section of the grocery, but they are fresh and know you will enjoy.  Some are tiny and your recipe may call for you to cut into quarters—-don’t think you’ll have to do that on all of these because some are very small!

A quick lesson we will share….for those of you whom have come to the farm, or been to other vegetable farms, you may recall seeing rows of plastic where the plants are planted.  This is plastic mulch that helps create a more controlled environment for the plants.  Plastic mulch and drip irrigation supplies alone cost about $300, at minimum.  We didn’t realize how valuable the black plastic mulch was to brussel sprouts until this year when we thought we could “get by” with planting them into bare soil and just laying drip irrigation beside the plants.  The result gave us brussel sprouts that couldn’t even begin to compete with last years’….so next year…these beauties will be on plastic mulch.    You know it’s hard to believe we seeded these in the greenhouse back in March!!!  They have been a long time coming!  Good things come to those who wait!! Enjoy.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

1999, The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook

1- 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts

3 tablespoons good olive oil

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Cut off the brown ends of the Brussels sprouts and pull off any yellow outer leaves. Mix them in a bowl with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour them on a sheet pan and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until crisp on the outside and tender on the inside. Shake the pan from time to time to brown the sprouts evenly. Sprinkle with more kosher salt ( I like these salty like French fries), and serve immediately.

 

Creamy Fettuccine with Brussels Sprouts & Mushrooms

From EatingWell:  September/October 2009

Sliced Brussels sprouts and mushrooms cook quickly and cling to the pasta in our fall version of pasta primavera. Look for pre-sliced mushrooms to cut prep time. Serve with a tossed salad.

12 ounces whole-wheat fettuccine

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

4 cups sliced mixed mushrooms, such as cremini, oyster and/or shiitake

4 cups thinly sliced Brussels sprouts

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1/2 cup dry sherry (see Note), or 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar

2 cups low-fat milk

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1 cup finely shredded Asiago cheese, plus more for garnish

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water until tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain, return to the pot and set aside.  Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and Brussels sprouts and cook, stirring often, until the mushrooms release their liquid, 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add sherry (or vinegar), scraping up any brown bits; bring to a boil and cook, stirring, until almost evaporated, 10 seconds (if using vinegar) or about 1 minute (if using sherry).  Whisk milk and flour in a bowl; add to the skillet with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the sauce bubbles and thickens, about 2 minutes. Stir in Asiago until melted. Add the sauce to the pasta; gently toss. Serve with more cheese, if desired.

 

Beautiful sweet peppers—what to do with them??

This week we have the Yummy Orange sweet pepper (that is actually the name of them) that is apricot in color and the interesting purple bell peppers.  Both are perfect as a snack, plain or dipped in your favorite dressing.  They are perfect in green salads, cold pasta salads, a nice garnish to any meal, liven up a sandwich, lightly cooked in a vegetable medley, or stuff the orange peppers with cream cheese and ham for a heavy appetizer.  They really are a treat from above!

 

The Harvest shares enjoy the last Heirloom tomatoes of the season….

Try a light lunch of Heirloom Tomato Sandwiches…

1 and a half ounces of softened cream cheese

1 tablespoon mayonnaise

1/2 tablespoon of chopped fresh dill

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

4 slices of soft hearty-white sandwich bread

2 heirloom tomatoes, sliced into 1/4 inch thick slices

salt to taste

ground pepper to taste

In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, mayo, dill and garlic powder.  Spread evenly over slices of bread, layer with tomato slices.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top with other bread slices.  Serve immediately.  Yum!

 

We just couldn’t resist to offer some more sweet corn for the season.  Here’s one note in our “journal” that has been highlighted—-next year—put more focus on sweet corn space in the field and work on timing of it!!!  We have dearly missed having a field to go to grab a few ears for dinner!  This week, enjoy Gallrein Farm’s Corn.  (As a side note, they are a great place to visit during the Fall for a family day!)

Louise’s Corn Pudding (Flavors of Kentucky, Sharon Thompson)

This recipe is one I use very often (in a year following a plentiful corn crop)… It really is good enough to serve for Thanksgiving dinner and quick enough for a side-dish in a hurry!

16-ounce can whole kernel corn, drained (I use fresh cut-off-the-cob or frozen {no need to thaw})

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

salt and pepper

1/4 cup sugar

1 egg, beaten

3 tablespoons butter, melted

milk

Combine all of the ingredients, except the milk, in a 2-quart microwaveable dish.  Add enough milk to cover.  Microwave on high, uncovered, for 10 minutes.  Stir as the mixture cooks.  Makes 6 to 8 servings.

 

This week we have had a beautiful harvest of golden zucchini, patty pan squash, zephyr squash (half green/half yellow), and sunburst squash.   There are dozens of ways you can fix them.   Each are so full of flavor, you really could eat fresh, or slightly sauteed.  If you want a great one-dish meal, give this a try… This summer we have fallen in love with the combination of squash and pork sausage—-never knew the flavors would marry so well….but they do!

Mix-n-match squash casserole

4 cups of summer squashes, cubed (a variety is nice)

1 lb. of pork sausage, cooked and drained

1 cup of dry bread crumbs

1/4 cup of minced green bell pepper

1/4 cup of minced onions

1/2 grated parmesan cheese

2 large eggs, beaten

1/2 cup milk

1/2 teaspoon salt

Place squash and a small amount of water in a large saucepan; cover and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or possibly until tender.  Drain.  Add in all other ingredients; mix well.  Transfer to a greased 11-inch x 7-inch x 2-inch baking dish.  Bake uncovered for 30-35 minutes at 325 degrees.  Serve with warm bread and enjoy!

 

Every summer we end up having an over-grown zucchini or two (or more!) that make wonderful zucchini bread.  However, this week, you have this over-grown patty-pan squash that will work PERFECT for zucchini bread!  The ideal size of patty-pans are anywhere from 1 -1/2 to 4 inches in diameter.   Unfortunately, we overlooked that our younger patty-pan plants were bearing again, so here’s a cheers to everyone for making bread sometime over the next few weeks.  The patty pans will keep for weeks in your fridge until you have time to prepare.  The bread freezes well and will also keep in your refrigerator for weeks.  We thought about passing up on the opportunity to share the “accidental overgrown” patty pans with you because it’s not something we are proud of, BUT we want this CSA experience to be as if the garden was really in your backyard. And, if it were, 99% of you would at some point have overgrown squashes out there.  And, to best utilize what we grow, we find delicious recipes for mess-ups from the garden that result in happiness.  So, overgrown patty pan squashes will make delicious “zucchini bread”.

 

Old Fashioned Zucchini Bread (n/k/a Overgrown Patty-Pan Bread)

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

3 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3 eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

2 1/4 cups white sugar

3 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 cups grated zucchini

1 cup chopped walnuts

Grease and flour two 8 x 4 inch pans. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Sift flour, salt, baking powder, soda, and cinnamon together in a bowl.  Beat eggs, oil, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl. Add sifted ingredients to the creamed mixture, and beat well. Stir in zucchini and nuts until well combined. Pour batter into prepared pans.  Bake for 40 to 60 minutes, or until tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes. Remove bread from pan, and completely cool.

 

A delightful snack: Acorn Squash Seeds

1 cup winter squash seeds

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil.  After removing the seeds from the squash, rinse with water, and remove any strings and bits of squash. Pat dry, and place in a small bowl. Stir the olive oil and salt into the seeds until evenly coated. Spread out in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet.  Bake for 15 minutes, or until seeds start to pop. Remove from oven and cool on the baking sheet before serving.

 

In a rush to prepare dinner and wanna have some acorn squash?

Here’s a recipe for cooking it in the microwave...

(do note that this is sinfully good, so you may want to be disciplined and not eat all of the goodies that flavor your squash that pool up in the middle???)

2 medium acorn squash

1/4 cup packed brown sugar

2 tablespoons butter

4 teaspoons honey

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Cut squash in half; discard seeds (or save to bake as a snack). Place squash cut side down in a microwave-safe dish. Cover and microwave on high for 10-12 minutes or until tender.  Turn squash cut side up. Fill centers of squash with brown sugar, butter and honey; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover and microwave on high for 2-3 minutes or until heated through. Yield: 4 servings.

Herb of the week: savory

Fresh thyme can be preserved the same way as others—freeze or dry.

For herbs that are fresh, you only need half of what a recipe calls for when asking for “dried”.   Savory is great for mushrooms, meats,

Herbed Roasted Potatoes

2 tbsp. olive oil, divided
2 lb. low-starch potatoes (red or yellow skinned), halved or quartered
1/2 tsp. dried summer savory
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried marjoram
salt and fresh ground pepper

Preheat oven to 450° F. Use some of the oil to coat a heavy baking sheet or pan. Combine potatoes, herbs and remaining oil in pan and toss well. Season with salt and pepper. Roast until potatoes are golden brown, stirring frequently, about 40 minutes.

To shorten the cooking time, you can parboil the potatoes for 4-6 minutes before roasting. Drain well, add oil and seasoning and roast for about 20-25 minutes.

Lima Beans

Oh, boy, these little things grow you some patience!! We have two rows of lima beans planted, about 700 feet long.  The yield is terrible!  ”Expert lima bean growers” tell me this is normal and they will continue to bear hear and there until the end of the season.  So, with that, we all have to be patient.  We are keeping a log of who gets them in hopes that prior to the end of the season, everyone will have the chance to enjoy!  A few tips on them…..The pods are kinda rough looking, but it doesn’t matter since we only eat the beans inside.  You can use for a bean salad, garnish any salad with them, or cook them.  A trick I’ve learned is not to stir, but shake.  If you can’t eat right away, you can freeze them.  Hull, blanch, drop in ice-cold water, drain on towels until dry, scoop up and pop in a freezer bag.

Hope you have a great week in the kitchen!  Get ready for some fresh fall salads come next week!!

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • September 22nd, 2011

This week, enjoy mexican food with a side of seedless watermelon, preserve some fresh herbs, enjoy a dish made with okra, a light side of summer squashes, a desert of acorn squash.  This time of year is really neat. You think the garden is puttering out and there are still all kinds of great things you can do with the Harvest of the week!  We’ve slowed our sales to wholesale buyers to keep this “good stuff” in the hands of our CSA.  Late season items may not all be beautiful to some vendors, but those of us who appreciate whole foods for what they are—it’s fantastic!  Enjoy your meals this week!

 

Fajitas

Fajita Marinade  (can get prepared or make it homemade)

1 & 1/2 pound beef boneless top sirloin steak, 1-1/2 inches thick

12 flour tortillas (8 to 10 inches in diameter)

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 large onions, sliced

2 medium green or red bell peppers, cut into 1/4-inch strips

1 jar (8 ounces) picante sauce (1 cup)

1 cup shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese (4 ounces)

1-1/2 cups Guacamole (page  23) or prepared guacamole

3/4 cup sour cream

Make fajita marinade in small bowl.  Remove fat from beef.  Pierce beef with fork in several places.  Place beef in resealable plastic food-storage bag or shallow glass or plastic dish.  Pour marinade over beef; turn beef to coat with marinade.  Cover and refrigerate at least 8 hours but no longer than 24 hours, turning beef occasionally.  Heat oven to 325 degrees.  Wrap tortillas in aluminum foil.  Heat in oven about 15 minutes or until warm.  Remove tortillas from oven; keep wrapped.  Set oven control to broil.  Remove beef from marinade; reserve marinade.  Place beef on rack in broiler pan.  (For easy cleanup, line broiler pan with aluminum foil before placing beef on rack.)  Broil beef with top about 3 inches from heat about 8 minutes or until brown.  Turn; brush beef with marinade.. Broil 7 to 8 minutes longer for medium-rare to medium.  Discard any remaining marinade.  While beef is broiling, heat oil in 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Cook onions and bell peppers in oil 6 to 8 minutes, stirring frequently, until crisp-tender.  Cut beef across grain into very thin slices.   For each fajita,  place a few slices of beef, some of the onion mixture, 1 heaping teaspoonful each picante sauce adn cheese, about 2 tablespoons guacamole and 1 tablespoon sour cream on center of tortilla.  Fold 1 end of tortilla up about 1 inch over filling; fold right at left sides over folded end, overlapping.   Fold remaining end down.  What a hit!!

Marinade:

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

Mix all ingredients in shallow glass or plastic dish or resealable plastic food-storage bag.   Add meat and turn to coat.  Over dish or seal bag and refrigerate, turning meat occassionally.

Guacamole

2 jalapeno chiles

2 ripe large avacados (if firm when you purchase, sit on counter for a few days until softer)

2 tablespoons lime or lemon juice

2 tablespoons finely chopped chilantro

1/2 teaspoon salt

Dash of pepper

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped

1 medium onion, finely chopped

Remove stems, seeds and membranes from chilies, chop.  Cut avocados lengthwise in half; remove pit and peel.  Mash avocados.  Mix chiles, avocados and remaining ingredients in a glass or plastic bowl.  Cover and refrigerate 1 hour to blend flavors.  Excellent!!   (Betty Crocker cookbook)

 

Jalapeno Poppers

jalapeno peppers

cream cheese

smokey bacon

Split peppers lenghtwise and remove seeds.  Fill to the top with cream cheese.  Wrap with a half slice of bacon.   Place on baking pan lined with tin foil for easy clean up.  Bake at 350 degrees until bacon is crisp.  (Tomato Shed Cafe, Charleston, SC)

Caution: DO NOT touch your eyes or any sensitive areas before removing your gloves and washing your hands.  Please wear disposable gloves when working with hot peppers!!

Note:   Slick shiny jalapeno peppers are generally not as “hot” as those with duller skins and stretch marks.  It’s not fool proof, but a good indicator of the “heat” factor.  The membrane holding the seed is the “hot” part of the pepper, so if you want jalapenos without heat, remove ALL the membrane and seeds.

 

Jalapeno Slaw

Makes 6 to 8 servings

1 (10-ounce) bag of angel hair coleslaw mix  (or finely shred 1/2 half of a cabbage)

1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced

1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion

1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro

2 jalapenos, seeded and thinly sliced

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1 teaspoon honey

1/4 teaspoon salt

In medium bowl, combine everything.  Cover and chill up to 2 hours.    This is a really good addition to chicken tacos, garnished with a little sour cream and cheese.

(adapted from Paula Deen’s Best Dishes, August 2010)

 

Green Tomato Relish

Makes about 2 1/2 cups

about 1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar

about 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon mustard seed

1/2 teaspoon celery salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 1/2 pounds green tomatoes, quartered and seeded

1/2 cup coarsely chopped onion

In a small sauce pan, combine vinegar and brown sugar; cook over medium heat 2 to 3 minutes, stirring until sugar is dissolved.  In medium bowl, combine vinegar mixture, mustard seed, celery salt, black pepper, and red pepper.  Gradually whisk in oil until well blended.   In the work bowl of a food processor, pulse tomatoes and onion until coarsely chopped.   Drain tomato mixture thoroughly through a fine-mesh strainer, discarding liquid.  Add tomato mixture to vinegar mixture, stirring well to combine.   Cover and chill for at least 2 hours.   Store in refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

(this is 1/2 of the portion amounts provided by Paula Deen’s recipe)

Green Tomato Soup

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 cup thinly sliced ham, chopped

1 1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions

1 tbs. chopped garlic (2 cloves)

1 bay leaf

2 pounds of green unripe tomatoes, chopped

1 cup chicken broth

2 cups water

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. black pepper

sour cream

Heat oil in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, then cook ham, stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, 1 to 2 minutes.  Add scallions, garlic, and bay leaf and cook, stirring occasionally, until scallions are tender and lightly browned, 6 to 8 minutes.   Add tomatoes, broth, water, salt, and pepper and simmer, partially covered, until tomatoes are tender, 15 to 20 minutes.  Discard bay leaf and season soup with salt and pepper.  Top with a dallop of sour cream.

(Tomato Shed Cafe, Charleston, SC)

 

Squash Hushpuppies

1 cup grated squash

1 egg, beaten

1 small onion, chopped

1 tablespoon flour

cornmeal, enough to thicken

oil for frying

Mix together squash, egg, onion and flour.  Add enough cornemal to thicken mixture.  Spoon into deep fryer and cook until golden brown.  Drain on paper towels to remove excess oil.  Serve hot with fish, chili, green salads, etc.

 

Mediterranean Salsa

1 zucchini

1 yellow squash

1 ripe tomato

1 red onion

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 cup black olives

1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes

garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste

Dice zucchini, squash, tomato and onion.  Put in medium bowl.  Chop olives and sundried tomatoes and add to mixture.   Toss with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper.  Cool in refrigerator to let flavors meld.  This accompanies grilled salmon very well when you bring it to room temperature prior to topping salmon.

 

Shrimp and Okra

1 large onion, chopped

5 cup sliced okra

1 stick margarine

1-2 pounds small raw shrimp, peeled

flour

Saute okra and onion in margarine until they start to get tender.  Add shrimp and simmer until the okra is done.  Slightly thicken juice with flour.  Serve over rice.

 

Baked Acorn Squash

2 acorn squash, halved and seeded

Salt and pepper, to taste

1/4 cup of butter, diced

6 tablespoons of firmly packed brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place squash in shallow baking pan, cut side down. Bake in oven for 30 minutes, or until tender. Turn cut side up, season with salt and pepper, dot with butter, and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Bake for 20 minutes more.  (Also good if you have any pecans or walnuts to add prior to baking!).  This is almost too good to not be a dessert!!

The neat thing about acorn squash is that you can use as decor for weeks until you are ready to eat, or if you just can’t wait, go ahead and bake one up tonight.  They are SO good!  We also like to just add butter and maple syrup.  You are in for a great surprise if this is your first time to enjoy winter squash.

 

 

How to preserve sage?

To freeze, just rinse and pat dry the whole leaves, then put them in a resealable freezer bag. There is no need to thaw before using. This maintains the flavor a bit more than drying it.

 

How to preserve thyme?

To freeze, just rinse and blot dry with a paper towel.  Put in a zip-lock bag and freeze for a few weeks.  Then, go back and roll a rolling-pin over the bag, watch many of the herb petals fall off.  Here you can keep whole, or dice up and put into a canning jar with a tight lid, label and put back in your freezer to use the same as you would fresh herbs.  Remember, when a recipe calls for dried, you would need twice the amount of fresh (or frozen).

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • September 15th, 2011

This week’s CSA has quite a bit of variety from our farm and we are treating you with some of our neighbors corn from Gallrein Farms.  Here over the next few weeks as we are waiting on some of our fall crops, we are doing a little “clean up” of some items where other crops are just now starting to bear—so everyone may not receive the same items.

This past week encompassed an element of farming that isn’t traditional.  I spent both Monday evening and all day Wednesday “sharing tastes” of our summer harvest with folks.  Monday night was at the Shelby County Chamber of Commerce’s Taste and Tunes and Wednesday was at a Culinary Event hosted by Piazza Produce in Indy.  For both events I made the following recipe.  It’s kinda weird, but interesting and full of flavor.  I wanted something light and refreshing and to really capture the taste of summer.  Sarah Fritschner of Farm to Table helped me with this recipe…I encourage you to get daring and try it for your next get-together….great conversation piece!

Watermelon, Tomato and Mint Salad

(amended from Epicurious, Aug. 2008, Rick Rodgers)

1 watermelon (4-4 1/2 pounds), preferably seedless

3 large ripe tomatoes, preferably colorful, seeded and cut in 1-inch cubes

1/4 of a medium onion

4 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

a few dashes of salt

(The original recipe calls for more onion and 1 cup of crumbled feta cheese.  If you use feta cheese, omit adding salt).

Cut up the watermelon into 1 inch cubes (remove seeds if needed).  Transfer to serving bowl.  Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour or up to 12.  Add the tomatoes, onion, and mint to the watermelon and toss gently.  Add the feta (or salt) and toss again.  Serve immediately.

 

Freezer Slaw

cabbage

green pepper

carrots

Add 1 tablespoon salt; set 1 hour.  Squeeze out

1 cup vinegar

2 cups sugar

1 tsp. celery seed

1/4 cup water

Boil 1 minute; cool.  Pour over slaw and freeze.

(this recipe is from the St. Dominic School cookbook, Springfield, KY submitted by Bubba Robertson).  I thought it might be good for those of you who’d like fresh slaw in a few months.

 

Stuffed Banana Peppers

This comes from The Food Network and has amazing reviews.  The variety of banana peppers we raised this year are in fact Hungarian Wax, so they are perfect for this!  Hope everyone tries!

  • 1 pound hot ground Italian Sausage, roasted and chopped fine
  • 1/2 cup Locatelli Romano cheesee
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large egg
  • Olive oil to saute
  • 4 banana peppers (Hungarian hots or mild as preferred)
  • 1 cup marinara sauce, heated for service
  • Wedge dry ricotta cheese

Mix sausage, cheese, bread crumbs, salt and pepper, and egg together in mixing bowl. Season to taste. Adjust mixture with additional cheese and bread crumbs if too dry or moist – medium moisture for stuffing desired. Make a radial slice around the top of the banana pepper leaving the top intact. Pull back top and remove seeds if so desired. Gently stuff mixture into peppers. Place olive oil in hot saute pan. Gently place peppers in the pan and fry each side until browned. Place marinara sauce in middle of plate. Arrange peppers on top of marinara and grate the dry ricotta cheese on top of the hot peppers

 

While at the food show I helped with, I picked up an edible Indy magazine.  I came across this corn chowder recipe and thought it sounded good for this cool, rainy weather we are having.    Her trick for getting fresh corn off the cob is to put a 15-ounce tin can in the middle of a large bowl.  Place / prop the cob on the can and cut down, allowing the kernels to fall into the bowl.  Make the first cut about half way through the kernels and the second close to the cob.  This double cut releases more of the liquid and increases the chowder’s corniness.

Corn Chowder

by Andie Marshall

Makes 8 servings

1/4 pound bacon, finely chopped

1 tablespoon butter

2 large all-purpose potatoes, peeled and diced

2 large ribs celery with tops, diced

1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced

1 medium bay leaf, fresh or dried

1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup chicken stock

2 cups whole milk

2 cups cream

3 cups cooked corn kernels and liquid*

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Heat large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium to high heat.  Add chopped bacon and cook until crisp.  Remove bacon with slotted spoon; drain thoroughly and set aside.  Reduce heat to medium.  Add butter, potatoes, celery, onion and red bell pepper to bacon drippings.  Cook vegetables until tender, about 15-20 minutes.  Add bay leaf, thyme, salt and pepper. Sprinkle vegetables with flour and cook for 2 more minutes, stirring constantly.  Stir in the chicken stock, milk and cream, stirring constantly.  Bring soup to a bubble.  Add corn and bacon (saving some for garnish) and stir.  Simmer for 15 minutes.  Adjust salt and pepper seasonings to your taste.  Remove the bay leaf before serving.

* About 6 ears of corn will yield 3 cups of kernels and liquid.  If you are starting with raw ears, first boil the whole cobs in water for five minutes, then cool before cutting the kernels from the cobs.

Suggested garnishes: crisp bacon, oyster crackers, diced green onions.

 

How to cook FRESH Lima Beans (Harvest Share—we only picked the pods that were filled, and hoping with last week’s rain, the other pods will fill soon and everyone will get to enjoy some frsh lima beans before frost)

from www.restaurantwidow.com

It’s a little more time-consuming than frozen, but I think it’s worth the effort.  Remove the beans from the pods and rinse under cold water.  Place the beans in a small pot and cover with water.  Bring to a boil and boil them for about 5 minutes, or about 2 minutes after the skin has begun to look pale and puckery.  Drain and rinse under cold water until they are cool to the touch.  Remove the tough outer skins by poking a hole in the “belly button” with your fingernail or a knife.  The bean will pop right out – although the skins are a little tougher than fava bean skins, they pull away from the bean much easier than the favas, so this isn’t nearly as time consuming.  I like to skin them right over the same pot, and then cover them with water again.  Bring to a boil again and cook for about 10-15 minutes, or until the beans have reached desired softness.  Drain and return to the pot again, putting the beans (with no water) back over high heat for just a few seconds, to dry them off.  Toss the pan a little whilst doing this.  Remove from heat and drizzle with good extra virgin olive oil, or coat with a pat of butter, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

 

Something that is pretty fun about selling food is you get to hear all kinds of little tricks here and there.  One of the distributors we work with was telling me about this amazing eggplant dip called babaganoush.  I never thought I’d be able to remember the word, much less find a recipe.  Wanting to find something fun for this week’s eggplants—or come back to this recipe another week—the reviews were great!

Middle Eastern Fire-Roasted Eggplant Dip: Babaganoush

Total time: 40 minutes, yield is 4 cups of dip

www.foodnetwork.com

  • 2 large eggplants
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 2/3 cup tahini (sesame seed paste, available in the international aisle at the supermarket)
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Pita chips, for dipping

There are 2 ways to cook the eggplants. The first way, on the stovetop, is my favorite because it yields a much smokier-flavored babaganoush.

For the stovetop method: Turn 2 burners up full-throttle. Place 1 eggplant on each burner and, using a pair of tongs, turn every 5 minutes or so, until the entire surface of eggplant is charred and crispy, about 15 minutes. Don’t worry if the eggplant deflates a little. Remove from the burner and place on a plate to cool.

For the oven method: Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Prick the eggplants all over with a fork (this keeps the eggplant from exploding in the oven, so don’t skip this step). Place on a baking sheet and roast until softened, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

Regardless of the cooking method you choose, once the eggplant is cool enough to touch with your hands, carefully peel the charred skin off the eggplant. Discard the skin. Move the flesh onto your chopping board, slice off the stem and discard. Using your knife, mince the flesh until almost smooth. Scoop into a bowl.

Add the lemon juice, tahini, parsley, and a little salt and pepper. Whisk together and taste for seasoning. Feel free to add more lemon juice, more salt and pepper… it will vary depending on the size of your eggplant, and how you like your ‘ganoush! Serve with pita chips.

 

Ok, so I’ve had fun searching The Food Network’s website for some fun recipes today.  Every once in a while during the winter I’ll sit down and watch some of their shows and I love them.  One of my favorites is Bobby Flay—here’s one of his….and sounds super easy!

Grilled Oriental Eggplant

  • 4 Japanese eggplant, halved lengthwise
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup dry sherry
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 3 cloves garlic finely minced
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted lightly

Place eggplant in a large shallow baking dish. Mix together the soy sauce, sherry, sesame oil, and garlic in a small bowl. Pour the marinade over the eggplant and let marinate at room temperature for 1 hour. Preheat grill. Season the eggplant with salt and pepper to taste and grill on each side for 3 minutes, basting occasionally with the remaining marinade. Serve topped with the toasted sesame seeds.

Szechwan Eggplant Stir-Fry

This is from The Food Network and the reviews make it seem like it’s a real hit for  a true, easy Chinese dish!

  • 5 Asian eggplants, about 2 pounds
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 green onions, white and green parts, sliced on a diagonal
  • 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 fresh red chile, sliced
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  • Thai holy basil and fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

Cut the eggplants in 1/2 lengthwise and then slice crosswise into wedges, no more than 1-inch wide.

Heat a wok or large skillet over medium-high flame and add the oils; tilt the pan to coat all sides. When you see a slight smoke, add a layer of eggplant, stir-fry until seared and sticky, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove the eggplant to a side platter and cook the remaining eggplant in same manner, adding more oil, if needed.

After all the eggplant is out of the pan, add the green onions, ginger, garlic, and chile; stir-fry for a minute until fragrant. Add the broth. In a small bowl, mix the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, and cornstarch until the sugar and cornstarch are dissolved. Pour the soy sauce mixture into the wok and cook another minute, until the sauce has thickened. Put the eggplant back in the pan, tossing quickly, until the sauce is absorbed. Garnish with sesame seeds, Thai basil, and cilantro and serve.

 

This recipe was submitted by CSA member, Mary Smith.  Sadly Mary lost her father this past week and asked that I share this recipe that he loved (and very seasonal).  It has been an honor to realize that her father seemed to look forward to her dishes “from the farm” that she has been able to share with him this summer.

 

Mish Mash

1 Rutabaga, peeled, diced

6 Carrots, peeled, diced

3 Potatoes, peeled, diced

1 small Onion, chopped small pieces

3 Parsnips, peeled, diced

2 White Turnips, peeled, diced

Butter

Garlic Powder

Lawry’s Season Salt

Chopped fresh Parsley

All vegetables should be diced and separated in their own prep bowls as each is added separately.  Bring 8 cups of water to a boil.  Add Rutabaga and boil for 10 minutes.  Add Carrots and boil 5 minutes.  Add Potatoes and Onion, boil 5 minutes.  Add Parsnips and Turnips and boil 20 minutes or until soft.  Drain and mash together with Butter, garlic powder and Lawry’s (I never measure, just taste as I’m mixing).  Add chopped parsley for color.

*Mary, this gives me some encouragement to expand our root crops next fall!

 

We hope you are enjoying cooking, preserving and eating healthy.  We do hope you are expanding your palettes and trying some new dishes this summer!

From our farm to your kitchen,

Mary & Family

 

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • September 08th, 2011

I have to say this week is one of my favorites of the year—putting them together has been really fun—so much color from the striped or oriental eggplant, to the vibrant colors of the hot peppers and beautiful tomatoes, to the soft colors of the cabbage and honeydew….simple, yet stunning, images of the farm.  If you are reading this and you aren’t a member of a CSA, I think this variety will get your wheels spinning!   Yum!

This week has “stretched” me when it comes to recipes.  As I was putting baggies of hot peppers in CSA bags, I’m thinking….what are people going to do with these if they aren’t crazy about hot peppers?  So, I found some info for you and put it here.  I can enjoy a bit of heat now and then, but otherwise, I’d be scraping my tongue for days if I tried to enjoy many at once!

Hope you enjoy!

 

The following recipes were submitted by Melissa Ballard, beef farmer and excellent cook!

We’ve really enjoyed the two following recipes over the past couple of weeks and I thought I’d share.  The first is one that I cook every summer – I always end up adding more of the veggies than the recipe calls for.

Coastal Style Rice

2 Cups uncooked rice (can use white or brown)

1/4 onion, cut into chunks

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 Cup water

vegetable oil

1 1/2 cups chopped carrot

4 cups hot water

2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 cups corn (I use fresh)

2 cups coarsely chopped cabbage

Soak rice in warm water to cover in a large saucepan 5 minutes.  Drain and return to pan.

Puree onion, garlic, 1/2 cup water, and a small amount of oil in blender until well combined.  Pour off any excess oil.

Add onion mixture, carrot, 4 cups hot water and salt to rice; bring to a boil.

Add corn and cabbage to rice mixture and cook, covered, over medium-low heat 20-30 minutes or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed by rice.

REALLY flavorful and pretty too!

This next recipe came from Tasty Kitchen and I was skeptical at first but wanted to use up some eggplant.  It was soooooo good!  Josh and I both kept saying, wow, this is really good!  We used our beef in the recipe as well.

Eggplant Lasagna

1 whole Eggplant

2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 dash Salt And Pepper

1 pound Ground Beef

½ cups Chopped Onion

1 whole Egg Beaten

1 cup 2% Cottage Cheese

1 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese

½ teaspoons Salt

¼ teaspoons Pepper

1 can Diced Tomatoes (we Like Garlic, Basil, And Oregano Or Fire Roated), 14 Ounce Can

½ cups Tomato Paste

2 teaspoons Red Wine Vinegar

3 cloves Garlic, Minced

1 teaspoon Finely Chopped Fresh Oregano (or Dried)

1 teaspoon Finely Chopped Fresh Basil (or Dried)

1 cup Shredded Parmesan Or Other Italian Cheeses

Start by slicing the eggplant into thin slices. Arrange slices on a baking sheet with edges. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper. Roast in the oven on 450F for 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway through.

Meanwhile, brown ground beef and onion in a skillet on medium heat.

For the sauce, in a food processor (or blender) combine the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, red wine vinegar, minced garlic, oregano, and basil. When blended to desired consistency, add to browned meat and let simmer for about 5 minutes.

Stir together the beaten egg, cottage cheese, parmesan cheese and salt and pepper. Set aside.

To assemble the lasagna:

First, spread 1/3 of the meat sauce on the bottom of the 8×8 pan. Second, layer the roasted eggplant slices. Third, layer the cottage cheese mixture. Repeat layers until all of the ingredients are used. Top with the extra cheeses.

Bake for approximately 60 minutes at 375F, checking at 45 minutes.

 

Preserving Okra

If you want to preserve it, just dice it up (remove stems) and lay on a cookie sheet.  Freeze it overnight, then scrape off and put in a freezer bag.  Then you can add to chicken pot pie, soups, or even use to fry over winter.

If you want a stew to warm you up with these cool temperatures, here’s one:

Curried Tomato and Okra Stew

3 to 4 tablespoons oilive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

3 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tablespoons of curry powder (or to taste)

Salt and freshly ground pepper

3 cups sliced fresh okra

3 tomatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped

3/4 cup of water or chicken stock

Pinch of sugar, if desired

1/4 cup of fresh parsley

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the onion, garlic, and seasonings; stir.  Reduce the heat to medium and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.  Add the okra and saute 5 minutes.  Add the tomatoes, water, and sugar.  Cook until tender, about 30 minutes.  Taste and adjust accordingly.  Stir in the parsley.  Serve warm over rice or grits, or as is with a slice of cornbread.  Serve 6.    (From Hilly Herrick’s Southern Farmers Market Cookbook)

 

Heirloom Tomato Salad

A friend of ours, Serena Gilkison (black raspberry farmer), made this for a get-together we were at together on Saturday night.  I think I could have eaten the whole pan!

Arrange slices of mozzarella cheese on a serving dish (that has shallow sides).  On top of each slice of cheese, place a slice of tomato, then another slice of mozzarella cheese.  Top with pieces of basil.   Generously pour some Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing (she used Newman’s Own brand— I think) over the dish and let marinade for at least 45 minutes.

 

Coleslaw, from Outdoor Eating

Serves 10-12

2/3 cup mayonnaise

2/3 cup plain yogurt

dash of Tabasco sauce

1 medium head of white cabbage

4 carrots

1 green bell pepper

salt and pepper

To make dressing, mix the mayonnaise, yogurt, Tabasco sauce, and salt and pepper to taste together in a small bowl.  Chill in the refrigerator until required.  Cut the cabbage in half and then in quarters.   Remove and discard the tough center stem and finely shred the leaves.  Wash the leaves under cold running water and dry thoroughly on paper towels.  Peel the carrots and shred in a food processor or on a mandoline.  Alternatively, roughly grate the carrot.  Cut the bell pepper into quarters, then seed it and cut the flesh into thin strips.

Mix the vegetables together in a large serving bowl and toss to mix.  Pour over the dressing and toss until the vegetables are well coated.   Let the vegetable mixture chill until required.

 

Cherry Tomatoes

Last year we did a little farm market outside SHPS.  There was a very nice man named Derrick who visited with excitement weekly.  He loved the cherry tomatoes and shared this recipe with me.  Thought I’d share the wealth!

from:  www.pinchmysalt.com there are lots of neat ideas on this website—one that looks real good is to serve on toasted brushetta smeared with goat cheese!  I don’t have either at our house, but a little whole wheat bread with cream cheese may be pretty good too?

 

Slow-Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
(adapted from Smitten Kitchen)

Cherry, grape or pear tomatoes (or whatever tiny tomatoes you prefer)
Garlic cloves, unpeeled
Olive oil
Kosher salt
Combination of dried Italian herbs (such as fennel, oregano, basil, or thyme)*

1. Line a half-sheet pan with parchment paper and heat oven to 225 degrees.

2. Cut enough tomatoes to fill the sheet pan (about 2 small baskets should do the trick) and place them cut-side up on the parchment paper.  Scatter a handful of unpeeled garlic cloves throughout the tomatoes.

3. Drizzle olive oil all over the tomatoes, then sprinkle lightly with kosher salt.

4. Mix together some of your favorite dried Italian herbs (or just use a commercial blend) and measure out about 2 teaspoons of the mixture. Grind the herbs into a powder using a spice grinder or mortar and pestle then sprinkle evenly over the tomatoes.

5. Bake tomatoes at 225 degrees for 3-4 hours, or until they have shriveled but still contain a bit of moisture inside.  The time will depend on the size of your tomatoes, so start checking early.

  1. Let cool and eat immediately or store in a covered container in the refrigerator.  The garlic cloves can be peeled and eaten or stored in the jar with the tomatoes for a few days, refrigerated.

 

Spaghetti Garden Ragout

(from Gardens of Plenty, a recipe book from Bed and Breakfasts around the country)

(I thought this sounded like a great dish to use the immature winter squashes!  Everything I read, it sounds like they are fabulous if prepared as zucchini.)

“A quick saute of tomatoes, zucchini, and onions, combined with melted Mozzarella tops spaghetti al dente.  Serve with a glass of dry wine.  Our testers were mad about this recipe and used plum tomatoes; whole canned tomatoes otherwise”—Mast Farm Inn, North Carolina

1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

1 large clove garlic, minced

2 medium zucchini, thinly sliced and halved lengthwise

1 large onion, sliced into thin rings

2 medium tomatoes, seeded and quartered

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon minced basil leaves

1/4 teaspoon fresh oregano

1/8 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

1/2 pound thin spaghetti, cooked

2 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup grated Asiago or Parmesan cheese

(makes 2 servings)

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet.  Add the minced garlic and saute until the garlic just begins to brown.  Add the zucchini and onion and continue to saute over medium heat until tender.  Add the tomatoes, salt, basil, oregano, and pepper.  Cover and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes.   Remove the pan from heat and sprinkle with Mozzarella cheese.  Cover and allow the dish to sit for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the cheese melts.   Meanwhile, toss the spaghetti with the butter and cheese.  Arrange the pasta on a large platter and top with the warm vegetables.  Serve immediately.

 

What to do with these hot peppers if I’m not a fan of hot peppers?

****Caution, you may want to use gloves when handling these as hot peppers can irritate your eyes and skin****  We don’t need any visits to the ER this year!

www.allrecipes.com

Pickled Hot Peppers

“These pickled peppers are great in salads or to serve alongside a meat dish. These can be made less spicy by removing the seeds from the peppers.”

Ingredients

  1. 1 1/2 pounds banana peppers, cut into 1 inch pieces
  2. 1 pound jalapeno peppers, cut into 1 inch pieces
  3. 1/4 pound serrano peppers, cut into 1 inch pieces
  4. 6 cups vinegar
  5. 2 cups water
  6. 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  7. 1 onion, chopped
  1. Place the banana peppers, jalapeno peppers, and serrano peppers into a large pot. Add the vinegar, water, garlic, and onion. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 5 minutes (from reviews, not too long or may turn mushy)
  2. Ladle peppers into sterile jars, and fill to the top with the liquid, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Tap jars on the counter to remove air bubbles. Place two piece lids on the jars.
  3. Place jars in the rack of a large, canning pan, and fill with enough water to cover the jars completely. Bring to a boil, and boil for 10 to 15 minutes. Refrigerate jars after opening.

I think you could scale it down to make a jar or so of hot pickled peppers if you like.

 

Last night I made a pot of chili and put one of the little red cayenne-like peppers in it whole, then removed it before serving and it added a nice taste to it.  I’m going to dry some of these to keep for just that.

Our workers typically lay the chiles outside to dry, but I was curious how to dry some ourselves to keep for occassional use.  I found this info (with great reviews) on the website:  www.scottrobertsweb.com He sounds like a hot pepper expert!

Why Dry Hot Peppers?

The main reason to learn how to dry hot peppers is simply to enable you to keep them for a long time. Peppers can last for several days to a few weeks at room temperature or in the refrigerator before they start to rot. Freezing peppers, if done right, can make them last several months, but the thawing process can be a tricky one where often you’re left with overly soft and mushy chiles. Dried chiles can last from several months to a few years if store properly.

Removing moisture from peppers will magnify and intensify the heat, flavor, and natural sugars it contains. Dehydrated chiles pack more fiery punch and ferocity in both solid food and hot sauce recipes than fresh peppers. Plus, if you grind or crush dried peppers, you can use it as an all-purpose flavoring and seasoning for any occasion.

Preparing Chile Peppers to Be Dried

Before you start drying peppers please take the following precautions:

If you’re drying peppers indoors, keep the area well-ventilated. Warmed peppers will give off pungent fumes that are irritating to the eyes. If you have a ceiling fan, use it; or better yet, open your windows and bring in a portable fan or two to keep the air circulating and minimize the watery eyes and burned nasal passages. Take extra precaution around young children, pets, or anyone who is sensitive to spicy foods.

If possible, always wear gloves when handling hot peppers. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after touching hot peppers. Do not scratch your eyes, nose, face, or any other sensitive area of your body after handling.

Inspect each pepper before starting the drying process. Discard peppers if they have:

  • Soft, mushy, or spoiled areas
  • White, grayish, or diseased-looking spots
  • Have a questionable or rotten odor

Wash the peppers with warm water and dry thoroughly with a cloth towel.

Remove the stems from your peppers. If you’re drying in them in your oven or food dehydrator you may wish to slice the peppers length-wise (this will allow them to dry faster). If you’re drying the peppers indoors you may want to keep them whole as it usually takes a few weeks to dry and not cutting them open help prevent premature spoilage (but you may wish to experiment based on your regional humidity levels and temperature).

Drying in the Oven

You can dry peppers in any regular kitchen oven. It’s convenient that this method of drying can be done in just about any kitchen in the western world, but there is one big disadvantage; it may take several hours to a few days for the peppers to fully dry, depending on the size. It can also heat up your kitchen considerably if you’re drying on warm spring or hot summer day.

Simply position the peppers on a pan or cookie sheet in a single layer and place it in the oven. Set the oven to its lowest temperature setting, which is usually labeled as “WARM”, or just below 150 degrees Fahrenheit (120° to 140° is desirable). To allow moisture to escape, keep the oven door slightly open at least a couple of inches (now you know why it can make your kitchen hot). Every hour, rotate and/or flip the peppers over for even drying.

If you find peppers getting soft, brown/black, or extremely hot on the side where they touch the pan, then they’re getting cooked; you certainly don’t want this, as you’re just trying to dry these to use at a later date. To prevent this, try one of the following:

  • Turn down the temperature slightly. Not all ovens are calibrated the same – some may be off by 10° or more from the “real” temperature.
  • Flip the peppers over and move them around more often
  • Open the oven door wider

As soon as they’re fully dry, remove from the oven and place in an air-tight container. Larger, thicker-skinned peppers will take longer to dry than smaller or thin-skinned chiles.

Drying in a Food Dehydrator

This is the quickest and easiest way to dry not just chile peppers, but just about any fruit or vegetable.Once you have a dehydrator in your house or place of business and have it set up in a well-ventilated area, it’s time to dry your chiles. If the chiles are medium or large in size put them length-wise and place them on the dehydrator’s tray with plenty of space around each piece for good airflow. Smaller peppers (1 inch or less in length) can be left whole to dry.

If your dehydrator has a temperature setting, place it between 135 and 145 degrees. Let the chiles lay in the dehydrator for 8 to 12 hours, checking every so often to see if the smaller or thinner pieces have dried out. Larger pepper pieces may take a few additional hours to dehydrate.

You’ll notice that you’ll accumulate a lot of loose seeds on the bottom of your dehydrator. Be sure to save these either for replanting purposes or for using later in your dried chile recipes.

After complete, place your veggies in air-tight plastic bags or containers to prevent moisture from getting on them.

Drying Hot Peppers Indoors

This is the “easiest” method of drying peppers, yet probably the most time-consuming. Place whole or sliced chile peppers single-layer in a bowl, plate, or sheet and set them in a very dry, warm, and extremely well-ventilated area with loads of sunlight. Rotate the peppers regularly and discard any that show signs of softness or spoilage. If at all possible, place your bowl or sheet outdoors when the forecast calls for hot, sunny, and dry weather (this will speed up the drying process). Within one or two weeks, you should start seeing your beloved chiles get dry and brittle.

Drying Hot Peppers Outdoors

There are a couple of different methods for drying hot peppers outdoors. One, you can dry the aforementioned way of laying them out on a sheet and placing them outside when there’s a long string of hot and sunny days. Sun-drying can be very effective if the weather cooperates and if you’ve picked a spot where you can get maximum exposure to direct sunlight. If you’ve sliced the peppers, you may wish to place a screen over the sheet or bowl to provide protection from insects.

Another good way of drying chile peppers outdoors is to hang them from a string. Grab some whole peppers with the stems still on, take a long, sharp needle, and string them together with strong thread or fishing line through their stems.

Unlike decorative ristas (which clump several hanging chiles together in a tighter space), you’ll need to leave plenty of room in between peppers for proper airflow. At one end of the string, tie a small stick or wooden dowel to prevent the peppers from sliding off. Hang up your strand of peppers securely in an area where they’ll get plenty of sunlight and fresh air.

It can take up to two weeks of drying time in good weather.

When They’re Dry

Properly dried peppers should be devoid of any signs of moisture or soft “fleshiness”. Fully dried peppers can still retain a bit of flexibility in their skin – you don’t have to dry them until they’re brown, crumbling, or hard as a rock. But when in doubt, the pepper should be uniformly dry, slightly brittle, and have a tough skin.

What to do with them you’re done? You can:

  • Separate them by pepper type and store them in high-quality Ziploc-type plastic bags or plastic containers. This way you’ll always have a handy supply of dried peppers to use in sauces, soups, and other dishes.
  • Crush them in a food processor, blender, or spice mill and create a chile pepper seasoning.
  • Give them to family and friends as unique gifts so that they can spice up their own recipes.
  • Plant the seeds for a new crop of chile pepper plants.

 

from the work of our hands to your’s….Happy Cooking!


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • August 31st, 2011

Wow!  Talk about awkward!  It’s difficult getting “vegetable soybeans”, honeydew, tomatoes, bell peppers, kale, herbs, peaches, and watermelon from “place A to place B” in any sort of order.  I’m hoping nothing arrives smashed, but assure you that your family is in for a treat with the un-packing of goodies!!

Here’s some recipes, and interesting info for the week on your vegetables!  Enjoy.

 

What is the tall bouquet of soybeans?

One of my college roommates was telling us about “edamame” that she buys at her local farmers market in Hunington.  Overhearing the conversation between her husband and Shane was quite entertaining because Shane’s not one for recipe talk….but the long and short of was that we needed to begin growing edamame for our CSA customers because it was so good and to Shane it made perfect sense because they are edible soybeans—-we knew we could grow soybeans, so thought this sounded perfect.  As simple-minded as that sounds, I’ve been nervous about this sweet, nutty vegetable soybean all year long.  We purchased a few varieties of seed, hoping at least one would grow….much to my surprise they have done wonderful.  We have had very little insect pressure, no disease to my knowledge and we only had to chop out weeds once because they formed a canopy on the ground so quickly is discouraged a lot of growth for competition.   Shortly after their pods started forming, we got a rain.  It was perfect because it supplied the plant with the “drink of water” it needed to put energy towards producing it’s fruit.

A few months ago, I was so curious of their taste (I’ve tasted raw soybeans before and couldn’t figure out what was so exciting about them), so found a bag in the frozen food department of the grocery.  As Deanna and I were planning our field lay-out back in the spring, we steamed them, and enjoyed!  I have been excited since.

We’ve been keeping an eye on them, and this week the plants started to yellow, which is the sign that they are mature and time to harvest.  We are cutting bouquets of them so that you can see how they are grown and hope it will add to your experience.  What you will want to do is pick them from the plant, rinse/wash them to remove any soil.  The pods can be refrigerated for up to 10 days or blanch them for 2-3 minutes in boiling water and freeze them in a single layer.  After pods are frozen, store them in a plastic bag in your freezer for winter.

In Japan, the “branched bean” are eaten by boiling or steaming them in hot water until pods are easy to pop open (4-5 minutes), then sprinkle pods generously with salt or seasoned salt so that when you pop them in your mouth you will taste the salt also.  Just eat the beans, not the pods!

In China, the shelled beans are stir-fried with other vegetables.  The “hairy beans” are larger, sweeter, smoother, and easier digested than standard soybeans.  They contain about 38% protein and are rich in calcium, vitamin A, and phytoestrogens (plant-produced estrogens).  {all things in moderation}.

 

What is the wavy, blue-ish green bunch of stuff this week?

This my friends is Kale.  Kale is the “new big thing” in health food, although to many of us, we’ve been eating it since our mothers used to put it on the plate, whether we liked it or not.  Kale is great for digestion (one cup nearly 20% of daily recommendations of fiber),  is a superstar of antioxidants,  helps regulate the body’s inflammatory process, supposedly helps in the detoxification process, and is full of Vitamins K,A, and C.

Here’s a few things you can do with your kale.  I would recommend before doing anything to wash it well, even a few times.  The kale has been growing for a while and needless to say, some of Mother Nature’s finest have been nibbling on it.  The bug damage won’t hurt at all, but just wash it well, or you might get a little “extra protein” with your greens!!

Last season I had the pleasure of meeting Christina Collins as she would bring her children to our Farm Market we did outside of her husband’s work on Friday afternoon.  I loved to see the Collins family come because they took such interest in the food and were excited to see what they could enjoy in the coming week.  You know there are some people you meet and you just know they are good cooks….well, that’s my impression of her!  She shared this recipe as a family favorite and offered for me to share with others.  Christina and her family are now members of our CSA, so thought it most appropriate to share this recipe!

Christina’s Version of Zuppa Toscana

6 slices thick cut bacon, cut into strips widthwise

3 Tbsp minced garlic

1 pound italian sausage, if using link remove casing before cooking (we use mild)

1/4 cup diced onion

2 bay leaves

64 ozs chicken broth (we use low sodium)

1 pint heavy cream

5 large potatoes, skin on, sliced thinly

1-2 bunches of kale, stems and ribs removed and chopped (depending on how much green you like)

1 tsp red pepper flakes

Brown sausage, drain grease and set aside. Cook bacon, onion and garlic in stockpot until onions are translucent and bacon is cooked but not crispy. Drain 90% of the fat which has cooked off (or you can skip and just skim the top before adding the potatoes and kale).  Add sausage back to the stockpot, along with chicken broth, cream and bay leaves. Bring to a rolling boil, add in potatoes. Cook until potatoes are tender, add the red pepper. Add kale right before serving (amount of time before depends on how done you like the kale – we like it tender but not mushy so we add it approximately 10 minutes before serving).  Sprinkle with cheese before serving, if desired.

Here’s a recipe that was a hit last year—Kale Crisps.  They are a substitute for potato chips on movie night at your house if you let them be!

Kale Crisps

(from the kitchen of Susan C., CSA member)

Wash and dry kale, oil a baking sheet with oil olive. Spread kale out in a single layer.

Spray with olive oil (she uses a Misto). Sprinkle with salt. Bake for 8 or 9 minutes until edges begin to brown. “They’re nice and crispy…. almost like a potato chip.”

 

How to preserve fresh greens

Wash thoroughly to remove all dirt and grit.  Strip the leaves from the stalk (you can hold the stalk with one hand and with the other hand slide your hand down the stalk to easily remove the leaf).  Place up to 6 cups of raw greens (about 1 bunch of mustard or 2 bunches of kale) into 1 gallon of boiling water. Once water returns to a boil, keep it in there for 2-3 minutes (blanching process).  Immediately cool greens in several changes of cold water and drain.  Pack quart or pint sized freezer bags with the greens, leaving a few inches below the seal free of greens. Squeeze the air out, seal, and label.  Lay flat in your freezer and enjoy all year long!

Where did the peaches come from?

We have a beautiful selection of peaches this week from Mulberry Orchard.  Matt and Amanda, like us, are trying to diversify their farm, and this makes sense.  They are creating an atmosphere of agritourism and fine eating as they have created a market on their farm here in Shelby County, close to Cropper.  Their main items are peaches, apples, and pumpkins. In fact, their “busy time” is just around the corner—this is their first weekend to offer apple cider…they have several things for the children to do, which include “getting dirty”.   We thought we’d give you an insight of their harvest and invite you to celebrate Shelby County’s newest Orchard in a big way by coming out this fall.

Not that anyone needs a recipe to enjoy peaches….but just in case….

I remember this one from last year’s Edible Louisville magazine.  I found it on-line today and wanted to share…

HEIRLOOM TOMATO, SUMMER PEACH AND FRESH HERB “GAZPACHO” SALAD (Reprinted from Fast, Fresh & Green)

I call this a “gazpacho” salad not because it looks like one, but because you can roughly purée any leftovers in a blender, chill it and you’ve got a delicious gazpacho. The dressing for this salad has orange juice in it, but when I have it on hand, I like to substitute a store-bought mango smoothie drink (like Odwalla). When you toss the salad with the dressing, taste the juices; if they aren’t bright-tasting, add more balsamic vinegar or soy sauce. You can also add more mango drink if you need sweetness. Dress the salad close to serving to keep a nice texture, and remember to save some herbs for garnishing.

Serves 6

2 pounds heirloom tomatoes (a mix of sizes — including cherries — and colors is nice)
1 pound ripe peaches
½ small red onion (about 2 ounces)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice or mango
smoothie drink, and more if needed
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, and more if needed
1 teaspoon soy sauce, and more if needed
½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
¼ teaspoon kosher salt, and more if needed
½ cup lightly packed small whole fresh mint and basil leaves (or large ones torn into smaller pieces)
Edible flowers, petals separated if large, for garnish (optional)

  1. Core the large tomatoes and stem any cherry or tiny tomatoes. Cut the larger tomatoes into large, evenly sized pieces. To do this easily, first cut the tomatoes crosswise into thick slabs, and then cut the slabs into large dice (¾ to 1 inch wide). If the tomatoes are very irregularly shaped, just cut them into wedges and then cut the wedges in half. Cut the cherry or tiny tomatoes in half (if small) or into quarters (if larger). Put all of the tomatoes into a large, shallow serving bowl.
  2. Peel the peaches with a paring knife and slice them off the pit into wedges or chunks that are close in size to the tomato pieces. Add the peaches to the bowl. Slice the onion lengthwise as thinly as you can and add it to the bowl, too.
  3. Whisk together the olive oil, orange juice, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, lemon zest and salt. Pour the dressing over the tomatoes and peaches. Add half of the herbs, season with salt and toss gently but thoroughly. Taste the juices and add more vinegar, soy sauce and orange juice if you need to. (You can let the salad sit for a few more minutes and taste and season again if you like.) Before serving, toss again and sprinkle with the remaining herbs and the flowers (if using).

 

Also, a few months ago I was doing a “tasting” at one of the Louisville Fresh Market stores and as I was cooking up squash and zucchini on the grill, Mike from the Produce Department was grilling up peaches.  He’d put them on the grill for a very short time and they would bring out a sweetness I didn’t know existed!  So, if you have the grill on over this holiday weekend, throw a few on!

 

What do I do with all the peppers?

You know, it’s part of having a garden—sometimes you have a lot of one item!

This week if you aren’t interested in making stuffed peppers for dinner, I’m going to recommend you wash, cut out the stem and seeds, and cut into strips or dice, lay on a cookie sheet and freeze over night.  The next morning, scoop up with a metal spatula and put into freezer bags.  You will get to use all year long.  They won’t come out of the freezer with the same texture going into, but perfect for anything cooked.

 

Stuffed Peppers

(from Betty Crocker’s Cookbook, Bridal Edition)

prep time 15 minutes, cook time 15 minutes, Bake time 1 hour.   6 servings

6 large bell peppers

1 pound lean ground beef (I used our neighbors)

2 tablespoons chopped onions

1 cup cooked rice

1 teaspoon salt

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce (or homemade)

¾ cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Cut thin slice from stem end of each bell pepper to remove top of pepper.  Remove seeds and membranes; rinse peppers.  Cook peppers in enough boiling water to cover in 4-quart Dutch oven about 5 minutes; drain.   Cook beef and onion in 10-inch skillet over medium heat 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until beef is brown; drain.  Stir in rice, salt, garlic, and 1 cup of the tomato sauce; cook until hot.  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Stuff peppers with beef mixture.  Stand peppers upright in ungreased square baking dish, 8x8x2 inches.  Pour remaining tomato sauce over peppers.  Cover and bake 45 minutes.  Uncover and bake about 15 minutes longer or until peppers are tender.  Sprinkle with cheese.

Here’s an option from our CSA member and chef, Lee Ashbrook—-omit the rice from the above recipe, and stuff your peppers half full with the meat mixture, then top with mashed potatoes, and sprinkle with cheese—-just made Betty Crocker’s version last night….guess we’ll have to try this really soon!

What herb is this?

This week you may be receiving Rosemary or Oregano.  They are each one of my favorite!  Enjoy.  The rosemary looks like little branches from a cedar tree, and the oregano leaves are softer, more round-like.  Use them to flavor a multitude of dishes!

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
  • August 21st, 2011

Scalloped Cabbage

4 cups of shredded cabbage

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

2 tablespoons flour

1/3 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

3 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

1 tablespoon sugar

½ cup bread crumbs

1 cup hot milk

Drop the cabbage into boiling water in a large saucepan.  Boil for 15 minutes;  drain.  Layer ½ the cabbage in a large buttered baking dish.  Season with 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.  Sprinkle with the flour and cheese.  Dot with ½ of the butter.  Top with the remaining cabbage.  Season with 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.  Sprinkle with the sugar.   Dot with the remaining butter.  Sprinklw with the bread crumbs.  Pour the hot milk over the layers.  Bake at 400 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes or until the crumbs are golden brown.   Yield is 10 servings.

Source: Pride of Kentucky

 

Cabbage Casserole (“almost a meal”)

1 small head cabbage

1 pound lean ground beef

1/3 cup rice (instant, uncooked)

1 small onion

1 can tomato soup

1 can water

salt to taste

Shred cabbage coarsely and place in baking dish.  Brown meat and onion.  Stir in rice.  Pour over cabbage.  Mix soup and water; pour over entire casserole mixture.  Add more water if casserole seems too dry.   Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes in a  9x 12 inch casserole dish, greased.   Serves 6 to 8, so feel free to adjust ingredient amounts for smaller family.   (taken from Hilma Madison’s recipe in the Washington County Women’s Club cookbook)

 

Cabbage and Potatoes Sauteed

(this uses several items we have recently harvested)

3 Tbsp. unsalted butter or 1 strip of thick bacon plus 1 Tbsp. butter.

½ head cabbage (medium size)

1 (8 oz.) unpeeled potato, sliced (or equivalent)

¾ of a medium – large red or green bell pepper, seeded and cut into strips

1 large onion, sliced in thick rings

2 Tbsp. water

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. pepper

Shred the cabbage coarsely and soak it on ice water 1 hour to crisp.  In a very large skillet, sauté the potato slices a few minutes in butter.  Add the peppers and onion.   Drain the cabbage and add.  Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons water and season with salt and pepper.  Cover tightly and simmer-steam 10 minutes over medium heat.  Toss and keep cooking until the potatoes are done, about 20 minutes in all.  Do not overcook.  Serves 6 to 8. (taken from Tillie Eddleman recipe in the Washington County Women’s Club cookbook)

 

Saute of Green Beans and Roasted Peppers in a Catalina Sauce with Fresh Goat Cheese and Almonds.

1 red bell pepper

1 green bell pepper

3 cups fresh green beans, snapped and rinsed (golden wax beans are just fine!)

3 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/3 cup coarsely chopped almonds

¼ cup top-quality Catalina dressing

Salt and freshly ground pepper

4 ounces fresh goat cheese

Roast the whole peppers under a hot broiler, turning at quarter points, until they are charred black all over.  Run the peppers under cold water and remove skins, seeds, and cores.  Pat the peppers dry and cut into a julienne.  Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil over high heat.  Blanche the beans until just tender plunging all at once into rapidly boiling water and cooking for about 3 minutes.  Drain, then rinse beans in very cold water until they’re cool.  Drain and set aside or store overnight in the refrigerator for later use.

When close to serving, sauté the garlic in the oil in a large sauté pan over medium-low heat until softened, about 3 minutes.  Increase the heat to medium-high.  Add the almonds, blanched green beans, dressing, salt, and pepper.   Toss and heat through for about 2 minutes.   Season and drizzle each serving with crumbled fresh goat cheese.  Serve immediately.

Note:  This could also be chilled and served later over fresh greens tossed in a big more Catalina dressing.   Serves 6.

Source: Southern Farmers Market Cookbook, Holly Herrick

 

 

This next recipe was submitted by Hallie Bray, CSA member—-here’s her comments.  This sounds great and might be a good way to utilize some left-over vegetables in your refrigerator!

This was a new recipe that I tried for dinner – YUM!!!  The great thing is you can probably add or substitute any of the vegetables you prefer as long as they have a similar consistency.  Hope you like it.  It was a revamped version of a Giada deLorentis veggie casserole(with all the veggies I had in the fridge to throw together), here is my version:

Vegetable Casserole Ingredients

  • 1 medium potato or 2-3 small potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2-3 Chinese eggplant or 1 ½-2 cups regular eggplant, peeled and cut into quartered slices
  • 1 bell pepper (red or purple are nice for sweetness), seeded and chopped pieces
  • ½-1cup corn (1-2cobs), boiled and off the cob
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1-2 small white onions (can use red onion for more zing), thinly sliced into rings
  • 2 small or 1 large squash or zucchini (I used the patty pans), cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick pieces
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 large ripe tomatoes, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 1 cup grated cheese (Parmesan(powder is good too) or cheddar, or ½ of each)
  • 2-3 tablespoons dried Italian-style bread crumbs
  • Fresh basil sprigs, for garnish
  • Optional: 2 carrots(cut into pieces) or any other veggie that you have lying around

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.Toss the potato, corn, bell pepper, carrots, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a bowl to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss until coated. Spread vegetables evenly over the bottom of 13X9 inch (or larger) casserole dish.Optional: You can add a layer of cheese mixture (see below) here if you want more richness or more tomatoes here too if you like.Arrange the onion slices evenly over the vegetable mixture. Toss/coat squash/zucchini/eggplant in 2 tbls olive oil with a little salt/pepper and arrange over the onion.  Arrange the tomato slices over the top.Stir the cheese and bread crumbs in a small bowl to blend. Sprinkle the cheese and crumbs over the vegetables in the baking dish.Bake uncovered until the vegetables are tender, and the topping is golden brown, about 40-50 minutes (or more if added extra veggies). Garnish with fresh basil sprigs, if desired.

 

 

Gazpacho (appetizer or cold soup)

Melissa Ballard, (Bluegrass Beef farmer) sent me this—-she told me it is so healthy, while full of flavor and refreshing!

Here’s the gazpacho recipe from her Aunt Cathy.  She writes:

I’ve found at least the basis for our gazpacho we’ve made in the past.  You probably know that we are all experimental cooks so never follow a recipe exactly and often have to substitute ingredients but this is a good base.  Enjoy!

1 c. peeled tomatoes, finely chopped

1/2 c. finely chopped green pepper

1/2 c. chopped celery (I’m not sure I used this)

1/2 c. chopped cucumber

1/4 c. chopped onion (red onion is especially good or a mild sweet onion)

2 tsp. snipped parsley

1 tsp. snipped chives

1 small clove garlic, minced (I doubt we ever stop at “one small clove garlic”)

3 T. wine vinegar

2 T. salad oil (of course, olive oil can be good in this)

1 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper

1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

3 c. tomato juice

Chill.  Serve as an appetizer or cold soup.

 

This is taken from my MORE WITH LESS COOKBOOK by Doris Janzen Longacre

which is one of our family favorites as it’s so full of simple, natural recipes

and lots of wonderful suggestions for healthy eating.

 

Abundant Harvest Oven-Dried (or Roasted) Tomatoes

5 pounds tomatoes

(plums are easiest, but use whatever you have)

Olive oil to coat very lightly

3 minced garlic cloves (optional)

Kosher or sea salt

 

Preheat oven to 200 degrees.  Cut the tomatoes in half lenghtwise.  Toss iwth the oil, garlic, and herbs, if using, and salt to taste.  Arrange, cut sides up, in one layer close together but not touching, on baking sheets (perferably parchment-covered or nonstick).  Roast until half-dried or drived and shriveled, between 6 and 12 hours.  (Taste and remove them anytime you like, but only totally dried tomatoes can be stored at room temperature.)   Different sizes of tomatoes will dry at different times, so remove them as they are done if the batch dries unevenly.   Yield varies greatly depeinding  on how long you dry the tomatoes.

To store:  Store very dry tomatoes in a sealed bag at room temperature.  Reconstitue in water, broth, or right in a sauce of any kind.  Store roasted (half dried) tomatoes in oil in the fridge for several weeks, or in a plastic container in the freezer.

Serving suggestions:  Enjoy half-dried (roasted) tomatoes with olive oil (and garlic and herbs if you like) in an antipasto, over pasta, in any kind of sauce, or pureed with nuts and cheese for a spreadable tomato pesto.  They are also great on any kind of sandwich.  (Source:  The Locavore Way, Amy Cotler)

 


Posted in Recipes of the Harvest   Print This Post
Copyright 2011 Courtney Farms admin   Site Design by Liza Hartman