Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Good Eats Newsletter - Jun 9, 2010

This Week's Vegetable Share Contains:

2 lbs Nicola Potatoes; 1 Bunch Chiogga Beets w/ Greens; 1 Bunch Lacinato Kale; 1 Bunch Scallions; 1 Bunch Wild Arugula; 1 Head of Napa Cabbage; plus.....

1 Bag of Spinach
2 Head Lettuces (Speckled Red or Butterhead)
1 Large Tomato

Localvore Offerings Include:
Elmore Mountain Farmshare White Bread
Pa Pa Doodles Farm Eggs
Butternut Farm Maple Cream

Pete's Musings
We dodged a bullet here on Saturday. The Great Craftsbury Tornado of '10 passed within 1/2 mile of the farm. It tore the roof off a house, leveled a couple hedgerows, and sucked a shed off its foundation leaving a startled farmer knocked to the ground but unhurt. We are very grateful this little windstorm decided to avoid our greenhouses. We spent an hour scurrying around putting row cover on a couple acres of tender crops to protect them from potential hail. No hail but we got some rain hard enough to tear leaves.

Killing weeds continues to be priority #1. Cultivating tractors are out in force, crew is hoeing and handweeding any time we have a chance, and we are keeping them in close check. Crops are growing well. We really needed the weekend rain and the cool weather crops are enjoying the lower temps. Greenhouses are looking great. I think we are going to have our best tomato, pepper, and eggplant, and melon season. Second batch of chicks is keeping warm inside and the first batch is getting ready to go outside next week. Turkey chicks will be here later in the week. Pigs are thriving on the sweet grasses of the bottomland pasture - I think they are my favorite farm animal. We're graining them about 1/3 the recommend amount and they are growing well, getting much of their nutrition from the pasture. Sweet potatoes are planted, tomorrow the edamame will be set out.

Thanks for joining us this share period. I hope you enjoyed the share and that you will give us an honest assessment on the share evaluation form. We want to hear the good, the bad, and the ugly. We still have some spots in the summer share and hope to see you there or in the fall. ~Pete

Pete cultivates brussel sprouts using one of the cultivating tractors. There are several sets of adjustable tines on the tractor fore and aft, and when positioned correctly, and cultivated frequently, the weeds don't stand a chance.

Paul weed whacks between rows of rhubarb planted this spring. If the grass is kept low, the rhubarb can take off and will eventually shade the weeds out quite a bit.

Spring Share Ends, Spring Survey This Week
This is the very last delivery of the Spring share period. I hope you all have enjoyed being a part of Good Eats these past months. I have thoroughly enjoyed filling the localvore portion of the share, writing the newsletters, and my email contact with all of you this share period. Later this week you will receive the Spring Share Survey via email. PLEASE take a few minutes to go through the survey and give us your feedback. We read through these surveys thoroughly and take all the feedback to heart. Future shares will be shaped using the answers you give us. Thanks in advance for your answers.

Summer Share Begins June 16th
Procrastinators, if you haven't yet sent your sign up, this is it, your moment! There is still time to get your sign-up in before the share starts. If your sign-up arrives by Friday, I can still get you started for the first week of the share. Don't miss out on your weekly bags of goodness! We do still have summer shares available so please spread the word to people who may be interested.

Summer Vegetable and Localvore Share Sign Up
Summer Meat Share Sign Up

Storage and Use Tips
Wild Arugula - Wild arugula is a slightly more peppery arugula variety. Its pungent flavor adds a great kick to salads. I like the sound of the salad Bill has offered up this week that contrasts the sweet beets with the peppery arugula. Arugula also stands up well to cooking and is great in pasta dishes or braised. I have included a simple pasta dish below to.

Lacinato Kale - Also called black kale or dinosaur kale, this variety has very dark and bumpy leaves that stand up really well to cooking. This kale will retain its shape even in soups and stews. Kale is in the super veggie club, 1 cup packing 1300% of your daily requirements for Vita K, 200% of your Vita A, and nearly 100% of vita C, along with lots and lots more vitas and minerals as well as several compounds fairly well documented to be helpful in fighting certain types of cancers. And what's more, it's tasty, so eat lots.

Chiogga Beets - Originating in Chioggia, Italy this is the prettiest beet around. Slice through it to reveal the alternating scarlet and white rings. This variety is sweeter than most and tender and is often eaten raw where it has opportunity to show off it's beauty. Slice it thin and add to salads this week. Or roast them and then add to salads if you like. Cooking them through will cook away the rings though until the flesh is uniformly pink. Don't forget the beet greens! Use your beet greens as you might chard or spinach. I like mine sauteed asian style with garlic and tamari, or sliced into ribbons and tossed with garlic and tomato and pasta, or simply steamed and then dotted with butter and tossed with a nice vinegar. Tasty and healthy.

Localvore Lore
At Elmore Mountain Bread, Blair and Andrew are busy baking this week's bread. This just in from Blair.

We wanted to bake a bread for the share that has the same staple qualities as the Country French, but is lighter with hints of wheat and rye. This simple yeasted bread, which we are calling Farmshare White, is a new bread to us and has a similar flavor profile to our baguette. We think it will appeal to all kinds of palates and uses. ~ Blair

For over 40 years, the Marvin Family have been involved in maple production, while stewarding their 600 acre sugarbush. Butternut Mountain Farm produces a variety of products but maple butter is truly the cream of the crop. This is a new product for the farm and we are eager for your feedback, so please email comments.

We’re really excited to be developing a new recipe for our maple butter and to have this opportunity to share it with the folks in Pete’s Greens CSA. For those of you familiar with maple butter you’ll find that ours is more spreadable and less thick. No prying it out of the jar. For those of you who aren’t, maple butter, also known as maple cream, is a single ingredient product made solely from 100% pure (in our case) Vermont maple syrup. Try it on your morning toast or as a dip for fresh fruit. For a true Sugarhouse at Home experience use it to frost your favorite donuts. Our maple butter is best when refrigerated upon receipt and should always be refrigerated after opening. Also, you’ll likely notice a thin layer of maple syrup on top of the maple butter. Maple butter naturally separates, simply stir the syrup on top back in to reincorporate. We hope you all enjoy it as much as we do. Please email us to let us know what you think of our new product! ~Emma

Lastly, we have fresh eggs from "the girls" at Deb's Farm. French toast slathered with maple butter anyone?

Crunchy Raw Chioggia Beet Salad

1 bunch Chiogga beets, scrubbed, peeled and cut into fine matchsticks
2 granny smith apples, cored and cut into matchsticks
7 oz. feta cheese
½ bunch of fresh mint, smallest leaves picked
¼ cup sunflower seeds

Lemon-Honey Dressing
6 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. honey
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Whisk all ingredients together. Correct seasoning.

Dress the beets and apple matchsticks in a little of the lemon oil dressing and season with some salt and pepper. Taste and add more dressing if desired.

Divide the salad between four plates or put it on a big platter, crumble over the feta, and sprinkle over the baby mint leaves and the sunflower seeds.

Wild Rocket and Chili Spaghetti
This is a Jamie Oliver recipe and a great way to use some wild arugula also known as wild "rocket". From Serves 4.

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 clove of garlic, peeled and finely sliced

1 dried red chilli, crumbled

4 anchovy fillets in olive oil
(or sub a handful of chopped kalamata olives)
3 handfuls of wild rocket

zest and juice of 1 lemon

500g dried spaghetti

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

100g Parmesan cheese, grated

Heat a wide saucepan or frying pan over a medium heat and add the extra virgin olive oil. Add the garlic, chilli and the anchovy fillets and fry gently for a minute or so. Add 2 handfuls of the wild rocket with the lemon zest and juice and then remove from the heat. The rocket will wilt from the heat – mix it well with the garlic, chilli and anchovies.

Meanwhile, cook the spaghetti in plenty of salted boiling water, according to the packet instructions, and drain. Tip into the saucepan and toss together with the rocket and chilli sauce. Season well with salt and pepper and serve with some of the reserved fresh rocket and the grated Parmesan on top.

Kale & Potato Soup
4 large russet potatoes, washed, cut into large cubes
3 links linguica sausage, cut into small cubes (or andouille, kielbasa or chorizo...)
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 large onion, small dice
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 bunch kale, ribs removed, chopped
3 quarts chicken stock
3 sprigs fresh oregano, stripped and roughly chopped

Heat oil in soup pot Add linguica and sauté until the oil takes on a reddish hue.
Add onions and garlic and sauté until onions are translucent. Add chicken stock and bring to simmer. Add the potatoes and cook until they are just tender. Remove from heat. Add kale and oregano and stir until the kale wilts.

Cut thick slices of the Elmore Mountain bread. Rub with some olive oil and toast them in oven. Ladle soup into bowls and place a piece of bread on top.

Braised Napa Cabbage

3 tsp. neutral oil, sunflower, grape seed or vegetable
1head Napa cabbage, cut into 2 inch pieces
3 cloves garlic, sliced
2 tbsp. ginger, finely chopped
¼ cup water
1.5 tsp. cornstarch or arrowroot
¼ cup tamari
6 scallions, thinly sliced
1 tsp. rice wine vinegar

In a large skillet or wok, heat 1 tsp. of the vegetable oil . When it is very hot, add half the cabbage. Cook, stirring constantly, for 3 minutes or until leaves begin to brown. Remove them from pan. Use 1 tsp. of the remaining vegetable oil to cook the remaining cabbage in the same way; remove from the pan. Add the remaining 1 tsp. vegetable oil to pan. Cook the garlic and ginger, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.

In a small bowl, stir together the water and cornstarch. Stir the tamari into the pan. Add the cornstarch mixture and bring to a boil. Return all the cabbage to pan, stirring well to coat it all over. Cook, stirring often, for 5 minutes or until the cabbage is tender. Remove from the heat. Stir in the scallions and vinegar. Grilled chicken or shrimp can be added to this to make a complete meal. Just add the pre-cooked protein to the pan when tossing cabbage with tamari mixture.

Greens With Garlic and Chile
Here's a simple classic you can use this week with beet greens, kale or the spinach in the share.

1 bunch (about 1 lb.) greens of your choice
1 Tbsp. salt (for boiling water) plus more to taste
1 to 2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 to 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 to 3 whole, small dried chiles (such as arbol) or 1 fresh red chile such as fresno, sliced
Lemon juice (optional but delicious)

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, clean greens and cut off any tough stems. Chop greens into fairly large pieces and set aside.

Add 1 tbsp. salt and chopped greens to boiling water (except for spinach, you can skip this step if using spinach). Cook until greens wilt, 30 seconds to 2 minutes depending on toughness of the greens you're using. Drain and immediately rinse with cold water until cool. Use your hands to squeeze out as much water as possible from the greens. Set aside.

Heat a large frying pan or saute pan over high heat. Add oil, garlic, and chile. Cook, stirring, until fragrant and just starting to turn golden, about 30 seconds. Add greens and stir to combine. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until greens are tender and flavors combine, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve greens hot, warm, or at room temperature.

Roasted Beet Salad

1 bunch beets, trimmed
1/4 cup toasted walnuts or almonds
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. minced shallot
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp. cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 large Asian pear
3 cups arugula

Preheat oven to 425°F.
Wrap beets in foil and roast in middle of oven until tender. Unwrap beets and cool. While beets are roasting, toast desired nut in a small pan until just slightly brown. Stir together shallot, lemon juice, oil, vinegar, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Slip skins from beets and halve large beets. Cut beets into 1/4-inch-thick slices and add to dressing, tossing to coat.
Quarter and core pear and cut into julienne strips. Add pear and arugula and gently toss. Top with nuts. A good blue or goat cheese goes well with this salad and gives it some depth.

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