Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Good Eats Newsletter - September 30, 2009

This Week's Vegetable Share Contains
1 lb Tomatoes; 1 medium head of Napa Cabbage; 1.5 lbs Sweet Red Peppers; 1 lb Pac Choi; 1 Bunch of Large Leeks; Mixed Green and Purple Kohlrabi; Brussel Sprouts; Broccoli; 1 Bunch of Celery and 1 Bunch of Dill.

Localvore Share Members Also Receive
Red Hen All Vermont Potato Bread
Consider Bardwell Farm Manchester Cheese
Honey Gardens Apiaries Blueberry Honey

New Sites for Fall!

It's been a long time coming but we are finally adding some new sites to the Wednesday delivery schedule. So far we have added Richmond and Shelburne, we have traded one site for another in Montpelier, and we are considering adding a THIRD site in Burlington. It's exciting to have the opportunity to bring food to new people. We are also discussing a Newport option, and have explored Johnson a bit as well.

- We have wanted to add a Shelburne location. Our new partner in Shelburne will be Shelburne Vineyard located at 6308 Shelburne Rd. Pick up times still TBD as we fine tune the new schedule but they are likely to be noon to 5:30pm.

- On the Rise Bakery will be hosting the share and pick up times will be between 11 am and 6 pm.

- along with National Life, we will also be delivering to Montpelier Mud at 141 River St (just a short distance from current May Day Studio location). Pick up times
11am to 9pm.

- We'd like to
add a third location on the Northwest side of Burlington and to that end are looking at a couple new site options. Stay tuned for more on this.

- At this time, we are still just exploring this, but we may develop a partnership with some willing members who would pick shares up at the farm and bring them back to Newport for members there. Again, stay tuned for developments.

Pete's Musings

Fall harvest is in full swing, or would be if it could dry out a little. Last Saturday we harvested an acre and a half of gorgeous potatoes. They are stacked on 28 pallets in the barn and tomorrow we'll send them over the brush washer to clean off dirt and cull out the bad ones. We used our new digger which was great but has the unfortunate effect of making the folks working on it motion sick. There is a fast moving chain carrying soil, potatoes, and weeds, and the crew mans the sides of the digger to remove the weeds. I drove the tractor pulling the thing most of the day and only climbed onto the harvester for the last 4 beds. It made me so motion sick I went in the house and slept for 3 hours. Fortunately the rest of the crew is hardier than I am and only experienced minor discomfort. We have 3 more acres of potatoes and I'm growing concerned about the wet days we have ahead but I'm sure it will work out. After that we'll move onto Valentine radishes, followed by beets, turnips, carrots and celeriac and cabbage. All the crops look great and are appreciating the recent moisture. Greenhouse greens are looking nice, we'll be moving the moveable houses in another 3 weeks. Tomorrow we'll plant our large greenhouse in mizuna, arugula and tatsoi and that will finish our planting for the season. We hope you can join us for the fall CSA period, it will be better than ever. ~Pete

Just Two Weeks left before the start of the Fall/Winter share!
It's hard to believe that Fall share starts in just two weeks but it surely does. Please visit the Fall/Winter Share page for details and to download your sign up form.

Looking to split your share? If you are looking for someone to split a share with this Fall, take a peek on our Members Seeking page, where we post requests from people looking to split shares or share pick up duties etc. Already several members have found share partners for the Fall share. Please email me if you'd like to have a message posted there.

Pete's Pastured Chicken Order your chickens and fill your freezer. You can now order as few as 3 chickens and have them delivered to your Good Eats pick up site. Visit the Pastured Chicken page for order info including available delivery dates and to download an order form. These are great tasting chickens raised on an abundance of greens and grass throughout their lives. This is healthy, nutritious, vitamin packed meat that you can feel great about eating. Only $3.75/lb.

High Mowing Wins Lawsuit Against Genetically Altered Crops
The 9th Circuit Court in California ruled in favor of High Mowing Seeds, Center for Food Safety (CFS), Organic Seed Alliance and the Sierra Club in the lawsuit against the USDA regarding the premature deregulation of Monsanto's GMO sugar beets. This was an important victory and means that the USDA will likely require more thorough research and a full Environmental Impact Study prior to allowing more GE crops to be released. The lawsuit was brought by the groups in January 2008. They claimed that the agency failed to adequately assess the environmental, health, and associated economic impacts of allowing Roundup Ready sugar beets to be commercially grown without restriction. Sugar beet seeds are primarily grown in Oregon's Willamette Valley where seeds for other crops related to sugar beets, like organic swiss chard and table beets, are also grown. These crops would be at risk of contamination by wind pollination from the GM sugar beets. Some tidbits related to this story:

  • 1.1 million acres were planted in sugar beets in 2009
  • almost half of the sugar grown in the US comes from sugar beets
  • Roundup Ready crops allow farmers to spray their fields with Monsanto's Roundup herbicide without killing the crop. Constant application of Roundup has resulted in Roundup resistant weeds, and there are now millions of acres across the U.S. of such "superweeds", and farmers are using greater applications of Roundup or other, even more toxic chemicals
  • GM crops increased herbicide use in the U.S. by 122 million pounds – a 15-fold increase – between 1994, when GE herbicide-tolerant crops were introduced, and 2004
Support the Farm Share Program - Shop or Dine this Thursday
NOFA-VT's Share the Harvest Event
Each year for one day area restaurants that participate in Share the Harvest generously pledge 15% of their sales to support NOFA-VTs Farm Share Program. The Farm Share program enables limited income Vermonters to purchase a CSA share from a local participating farm by subsidizing up to 50% of the cost of the share. NOFA's annual Share the Harvest event is the sole fund raiser for the matching funds that NOFA contributes to the Farm Share program. Farm Share's ability to help people is dependent on the success of this event. So make your plans to dine out on October 1st. Or structure your week so that you can do your grocery shopping that day! A full 15% of what you spend that day will be donated to the program. The list of participating businesses can be found on the NOFA-VT website.

Localvore Lore This week's bread is an all Vermont Potato Bread from Red Hen Baking Co. Randy is baking this bread with a combination of potatoes from Foote Brook Farm and the fresh 2009 wheat flour from Aurora Farm in Charlotte. Randy is particularly interested to hear feedback on the breads made with this new wheat. Please share your comments by e-mail. I am really excited about the cheese in this share and really hope you like it as much as I do.

Consider Bardwell Farm is 300 acre goat dairy in West Pawlett, VT. The farm, originally founded by Consider Stebbins Bardwell was actually the site of the first cheese co-op established in VT in 1864. Now in the hands of four enterprising cheesemakers, the farm is once again gaining notoriety for the stable of award winning cheeses made there. Manchester is an aged raw goats milk cheese with an earthy, nutty flavor and bold bite. This cheese was an award winner at the American Cheese Society Awards in 2008, and was named one of the 100 World's Best Cheeses by Wine Spectator. Aged anywhere from four to seven months, Manchester is a robust and slightly spicy cheese. It’s texture and temperament make it perfectly suited to shave over salads, or as a table cheese. Please, please, please let this cheese warm to room temperature for full flavor!

We have a second serving of honey for you this week, this time Honey Gardens Apitherapy Honey is coming straight from the blueberry fields. Blueberries depend on honey bees for pollination for the setting of their fruit. When honeybees are brought to pollinate the blueberry flowers, the fruit crop is increased around 300% compared to relying on just the wild bees and other insects for pollination. Beekeepers bring their honey bees to the blueberry fields each season. Not only is pollination important to the berry farmer, but for the beekeepers the work comes at a time after a long winter where the income is gratefully received for all of the expenses of the honey season ahead. Todd Hardie writes:

The blueberry honey that we are sharing this week with Pete’s Greens comes from our friends in Quebec. It is the most remarkable blueberry honey that I have ever tasted. The blueberry flower is smaller than a honey bee, and in many seasons, the bees do not gather any “surplus” honey for their hives. In the last two years, the honey from the bees on blueberries has had between 10% and 30% blueberry honey in it. My sense is that this year the honey could be between 90% or more blueberry honey. The honey bees always go to the flowers that have the sweetest nectar in their neighborhood, and so depending on the season, with the blooming of flowers in a particular neighborhood, and the sun and the rain, the composition of blueberry honey is always different. Thank you for your support of the honey bees and those that work in agriculture. ~Todd

Storage and Use Tips
There are many, many storage and use tips on our blog for pretty much anything we have ever grown, you can enter veggie names in the search box to find info. Very soon we will be finished creating a new veggie info and recipe section on the website site which will be much more user friendly. Can't wait until it's finished! Until then please visit our blogspot if you want to know more about something in the share.

- The name means cabbage turnip in German and that is a pretty accurate description. It is a member of the cabbage family and its outer skin would attest to that. The greens look more like turnip greens however and the inner bulb can be a bit fibrous, like turnip. Raw, it is crisp, sweet, and clean, strikingly reminiscent of raw broccoli stalks. Cooked, it touts a mild, nutty, cabbage-like flavor that adapts beautifully to many cooking styles. It can be eaten raw and is great in salads and slaws. I can also be boiled, steamed, baked, roasted, etc. The greens may be eaten cooked like turnip greens or any other cooked greens. To prepare the bulb, cut off the leaves and stems. Use a vegetable peeler to pare off the tough outer layer. Or use a chefs knife to slice it off. Dice or shave up the inner bulb according to your recipe. Store loosely wrapped in plastic in the fridge.


Holy Brassicas! We have quite a showing from the veggie family that takes top rankings for health attributes. Brussels sprouts, broccoli, Napa cabbage, kohlrabi and pac choi - all are super healthy and packed with vitamins and cancer fighting goodness. I have selected recipes this week that highlight these power veggies.

Vegetable Strudel
This is a delicious dish from Mollie Katzen's Enchanted Broccoli Forest. Makes great leftovers and you can also freeze leftover squares and they re-bake beautifully. Serves 6-8.

1 tablespoon butter
2 cups minced onion
1 large carrot, diced
3 cups shredded cabbage
2 cups chopped broccoli
1/2 lb. mushrooms, minced
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
4 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoon minced fresh dill
5 scallions, minced
fresh black pepper to taste
1 cup crumbled goat cheese or feta cheese
3/4 cup fine bread crumbs

1/3 to 1/2 c olive oil
1 lb. filo dough

Options: substitute some thinly sliced kohlrabi or Brussel sprouts here for some of the broccoli or cabbage.
For a lighter dish, use less layers of filo dough.

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Have ready a 9" x 13" baking pan.

Melt butter in a large deep skillet or Dutch oven. Add onion, and cook for 5 minutes. Add carrot, cabbage, broccoli, mushrooms, and salt. Cook over medium heat until vegetables are just tender. Remove from heat. Stir in the caraway, garlic, lemon juice, dill, scallions, black pepper, cheese, and 1/2 cup of the bread crumbs.

Brush the pan with a little olive oil. Lay a sheet of filo in the pan and brush lightly with oil. Repeat this until you have a stack of about 12 layers. Sprinkle the stack of fill with the remaining bread crumbs, then add the filling, spreading it to within 1/2 inch of the edges. layer more fill over the filling, brushing each layer with olive oil, including the very top. Use the entire box of fill.

Cut unbaked strudel into squares and bake at 375 for 35 minutes or more until crisp and to desired brownness.

Lotus and Linguine with Wok-Fried Vegetables and Peanut Sauce
Peanut sauce drizzled over hot noodles and crispy wok-fried veggies makes a nourishing dinner. Leftovers become a welcome lunch. Adapted from the Rebar Modern Food Cookbook by Audrey Alsterberg & Wanda Urbanowicz. Serves 4.

1 recipe Peanut Sauce (below)
1 lb linguine noodles
1 TB sunflower oil
1 yellow onion, sliced
2 carrots, half moon slices
2 large red peppers, 1/2" triangles
1 Bunch Broccoli, florets and stem slices
1-2 Kohlrabi (tough outer skin discarded, and interior sliced thin)
1 small head Pac Choi or Napa Cabbage or combo, roughly chopped
2 bunches scallions, 1 inch long slices
sesame oil
optional: chopped peanuts, lime wedges

For the Peanut Sauce
1/4 c. smooth, natural peanut butter
2 cloves garlic
1 TB minced ginger
2 TB honey
1/4 c. minced cilantro (got any left from last week?)
juice of 1 lime (or a good splash from a bottle)
1 TB sesame oil
1 tsp sambal oelek (or substitute equivalent fresh hot red chile and a pinch of salt)
1/4 c. tamari or soy sauce
2 TB rice wine vinegar

In a food processor or blender, add all the ingredients through the sambal oelek or chili pepper and blend until smooth. Then add remaining ingredients and blend, seasoning to taste.

Peanut sauce tips - you may want more heat (peppers), or more or less ginger, or more or less cilantro. Make this to your liking! Also, this sauce will thicken a lot in the fridge. You can loosen it up by stirring in a little water or stock, or heat on stove top (or in microwave). Y0u can make this sauce a lighter creamier sauce by adding lite coconut milk in a 1:1 ratio.

For the Stir Fry
Heat a large pot of water for cooking the pasta. Begin cooking the noodles when you start your stir fry. The will take about the same amount of time. Have a colander ready to drain the noodles. Meanwhile in a small pot gently heat the peanut sauce, adding water to thin if necessary.

Heat a wok or deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and when very hot, add onion and a pinch of salt. Stir fry the onion until translucent and then add remaining vegetables in order of their cooking times, beginning with carrots and ending with .., bok choy and scallions. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Continue tossing and stirring, keeping them crisp and brightly colored. If they start to stick, add a splash of water and cover briefly.

Toss the drained noodles with a splash of the sesame oil. Divide the noodles among the plates, top with vegetables and drizzle with warm peanut sauce. Garnish with chopped peanuts, freshly chopped cilantro, and a lime wedges, if desired.

Napa Cabbage,
Kohlrabi, Carrot Slaw
Adapted from a recipe in Bon Appétit July 1998.

3 tablespoons rice vinegar
3 tablespoons sunflower oil
2.5 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1.5 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
1.5 tablespoons (packed) brown sugar
1 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
1 tablespoons minced garlic

1 Napa Cabbage chopped
2 kohlrabi peeled and cut into matchstick size strips
1 large red or yellow bell peppers, cut into matchstick-size strips
2 medium carrots, peeled, cut into matchstick-size strips
4 scallions, cut into matchstick-size strips
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Whisk first 7 ingredients in small bowl to blend. (Dressing can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before continuing.)

If you have a food processor you can use it to grate the carrots, kohlrabi and cabbage and peppers. Otherwise hand chop and mix together in a large bowl. Add dressing and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Braised Brussels Sprouts in Maple Mustard Glaze
From the book The Vegetable Dishes I Can’t Live Without by Mollie Katzen.
Serves 4 to 5.

2 TB olive oil (or sunflower!)
¼ cup minced onion
4 c/1 lb Brussels sprouts, halved or quartered lengthwise (or left whole, if tiny)
½ tsp salt
4 to 6 TB water
¼ c. Dijon mustard
2 TB maple syrup
freshly ground black pepper

Place a medium-sized skillet over medium heat. After about a minute, add the oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the onion and sauté for 3 to 5 minutes, or until it begins to soften. Add the Brussels sprouts and salt, and sauté for 5 minutes. Sprinkle in 4 tablespoons water, shake the pan, and cover. Cook over medium heat for about 5 to 8 minutes, or until the Brussels sprouts are bright green and fork-tender. (You might need to add another tablespoon or two of water during this time to prevent sticking. Just keep your eye on it, and your fork intermittently in it.) Using a small whisk in a medium-small bowl, beat together the mustard and maple syrup until smooth. Add this mixture to the pan and stir to combine. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature, topped with a shower of fresh black pepper, if desired.

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