Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Newsletter 11/07/07

Pete’s Greens Good Eats Newsletter Nov. 7, 2007
IMPORTANT NOTE: Thanksgiving week Good Eats pickup is Tuesday Nov. 20, not the 21st. The times are all the same. Please make a note of it.
This week’s vegetable/localvore share contains: eggs, organic shitake mushrooms, organic cornmeal, delicata or acorn squash, sugarsnax carrots, hot peppers (although apparently they are not all hot), onions, leeks, chard, dill kale, salad turnips, potatoes, and cabbage and mesclun
This week’s root share contains: sugarnsnax carrots, 1 bu. celery (not advertised but it goes well with cooked roots), salad turnips, parsnips, rutabagas, leeks, and potatoes

This is the month of sweet, nutritious, colorful cooking greens. We are attempting to keep our outdoor kales, chards, mustards, pac choi, napa cabbage and more going as late as possible this season. They are covered with small wire hoops and double layer of floating row cover. Row cover is a fabric that lets water and most of the light through and provides a few degrees of frost protection. We plan to add a 3rd layer of row cover when it gets very cold and hope to take these crops into December. Try not to get bored with these greens as you will be receiving a lot the next few weeks. There are many great ways to eat them (steamed, sautéed, in soup, etc) Load up your families bodies with the nutrients these greens proved in preparation for the long and not very green winter ahead.
Some of you requested to not receive our free range chickens in your share as you are vegetarians. Our book-keeping for who is vegetarian got a little sloppy and I suspect that there are more of you who would prefer not to receive a chicken. We intend to distribute chicken sometime in the next couple weeks so please e-mail Pete if you would prefer no chicken. We will substitute tofu and other food in place of the chicken.
We were cruising along finishing our root harvest, feeling like we had just enough room in our storage facility for all our crops when we started to pick the half acre of cabbage. So much volume, it filled the space we set aside for it in no time at all. Fortunately our friends have an unused 10 by 20 ft. cooler that we can rent for a couple months until we clear some roots out of our cooler and make room for cabbage. Pete

All below is from Heather:

The eggs are from Pete’s, the cornmeal is from Butterworks Farm, and the mushrooms are from a new supplier to us, Tom Wisner. I have been working on sourcing local products for a couple weeks now, and it’s really exciting to have it come together in the share. I’m also the keeper of the hens, so I especially hope you enjoy the eggs! Please email me at heather@petesgreens.com for information about, or to suggest, localvore products. We are always seeking locally grown & produced foods.
Both of the shares this week read like soup to me. You could easily put together a rich potato leek soup, even incorporating some of the other roots and the celery in the root share. Another easy recipe to make is colcannon, basically an Irish mashed potato dish with cabbage, onion, and even kale added. Boil chunks of potato in salted water. Sauté the chopped vegetables you want to add in butter. Drain potatoes, mash with milk or cream, add vegetables, season with salt & pepper & a bit of the fresh dill. Cheese can also be mixed in or sprinkled on top. This mixture can then be baked, (nice with the cheese), or just served as is. This is comfort food for these rainy gray November days!
Consider whipping up some cornbread to go with your supper. This is my favorite super fast recipe:
CORNBREAD
2 eggs
1 c milk
¼ c oil
4 tsp baking powder
¾ tsp salt
¼ c sugar
1 c flour
1 c cornmeal
Preheat oven 400. If you have a 9” or 10” cast-iron skillet, put it in the oven to preheat with a pat of butter in it. Otherwise butter a baking pan and set aside.
Whisk together the eggs, milk, oil, salt & sugar. Whisk in the baking powder. Stir in the cornmeal and flour just to combine. Pour into the pan of choice. Bake 20 minutes, until set and golden.
As for all those Great Big Bunches of Greens coming your way, I have lots of ideas for you. I’ll share a few more over the next few weeks. Remember, they cook down to a much smaller volume!
POLENTA & GREENS
2 bunches cooking greens
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp olive oil
Dash red pepper flakes
2 carrots, halved and sliced (optional)
Italian seasoning herbs (optional)
Sliced shitake mushrooms (optional)
1 c grated cheese, provolone, cheddar, fontina, even feta, as you like
Wash and chop the greens. Sauté onion, garlic, and carrots and/or mushrooms in olive oil. Season with salt, pepper & red pepper and Italian herbs. Cook until browning and fragrant. Gradually add the greens, stir frying until all are incorporated and just wilted.
1 c polenta (coarse cornmeal)
3 c water
1 tsp salt
Boil water & whisk in polenta & salt. Turn down very low, watch out for sputters. Cook until thick, stirring often.
Brush a baking dish with olive oil. Pour in about 2/3 of polenta, spoon in the greens, top with remaining polenta & cheese. Take a butter knife and swirl through the top layers a bit. Bake @ 350 until bubbly and slightly browned, about 30 minutes.
A couple notes on this recipe. It is easily doubled, which makes a generous 10 x 14 pyrex baking dish. The polenta is easier to work with if it is poured right when it thickens. If you wait it will set up into a more solid form. Prep the vegetables and have all ingredients ready before you cook the polenta, so it will be ready at the right time, as the greens take just a few minutes.
Happy Cooking!
Heather

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