Sunday, January 6, 2013

Good Eats Newsletter - December 5th, 2012



MEAT SHARE MEMBERS - THIS IS A MEAT SHARE WEEK!
 
Localvore Members 
& Regular Veggie Only Share Members
take a LIGHT GREEN/TAN BAG
 
This week your bag will contain:
 
Baby Nicola and Red Norland Potatoes,
Orange Carrots, Sweet Salad Turnips,
Red Kale, Red Chard & Mustard Greens, Head Lettuce,
and Red Onions
 
And OUT of the bag:
 
1 bag Spinach Greens Mix
2 Acorn Squash
 
Localvore/Pantry Offerings Include:
Pizza Dough
Pizza Sauce
Pete's Greens Kraut
Pa Pa Doodles Farm Eggs
 
 
 
 
 
Small Veggie Only Members
take a YELLOW BAG
containing:
 
Spinach, Acorn Squash,
Baby Russet Potatoes, Orange Carrots,
Ruby Red Chard, Head Lettuce, and Red Onions
 
Thanks from
the Food Shelf
 
I would like to thank everyone who generously donated CSA shares
to the Food Shelf for Thanksgiving.  
 
As you know, it is very expensive to try and feed your family healthy nutritious food and the CSA donations were so exciting for all our families at the food shelf.  Your kindness is definitely appreciated by all the individuals who visit the food shelf.   
 
Thank you again.  ~ Cara
 
 
Storage and Use Tips
 
Red Chard and Mustard Greens - We had a major harvest in the tunnels last Wednesday and Thursday, before the temp dropped to 5 degrees on Thursday night (5 below with wind chill).  We were all munching on the chard as we harvested like crazy, marveling at how sweet it is!  The bag of loose greens in the regular veggie share this week includes ruby red chard and green wave mustard greens.  They show a little wear and tear from holding on through cold November nights, but you'll find the flavor is incredible!
 
Andrew, Molly, Annie, and Sean on Wednesday evening.  
As Sean described this photo, "we had just come in from the fields after harvesting outdoor kale and greenhouse chard.  It was pretty magical at the end of that business day.  The sun had set.  Snow was falling.  And there we were -- loading crate upon crate of winter greens.  The perfect vacation from my office cubicle." 
 
Spinach Greens Mix - You'll see purple leaves mixed into this week's spinach - they are radicchio leaves, to add a little color and flavor contrast to your salad.  Your bag may also contain some chard.  Do not be afraid, these greens together will make delightful salad and all can also be used in a cooked dish.  Sweet green and red and sharp bitter greens, side by side.
 
Baby Bakers - We included the baby russet potatoes in the small veggie share this week.  Like we've said, they are perfect for baking or roasting whole.  The skin is the best part (and contain most of the potatoes' iron, protein, and fiber), so don't bother to peel them!  Just rinse them in the sink and throw them in the oven.
 
Sweet Salad Turnips - These can be eaten raw, sliced into a salad, or just popped like candy.  They are also quite good roasted, whole or halved.  They are a light, sweet, treat in December.
 
Red Onions - If you don't use them up right away in salads or on your pizza, here is a recipe for red onion jam that will keep for weeks in your fridge, and goes well on any sandwich or alongside meats.  It perfectly breaks the richness of fatty sausage or steak.
 
 
Veggie Storage and Use Tips are our website too, so please bookmark the recipe and storage tip section. I am sure you will find it useful.
 
 
Localvore Lore
 
It's a pizza week again and Deb thinks these are her best batches of dough and sauce yet. Our pizza dough is made with Aurora Farm's organic unbleached VT white flour, Gleason Grain Snake Mountain Sifted whole wheat flour, local Sunflower Oil, salt and yeast. Use within four to five hours of thawing (ready to go the night you pick up share or store in freezer for later use). Coat a smooth surface with flour and cornmeal (just flour ok) so that the dough does not stick to the surface. Form dough into ball and flatten with heels of palms. Stretch dough with hands or use a rolling pin to form shape of baking pan (I use a cookie sheet so I form it into a square). Once dough is slightly stretched on surface you can stretch dough in the air with hands by making two fists held together with dough on top. Move each hand up, down and out turning the dough clockwise. Each dough can be stretched to a 16" round, for thicker crust make smaller. If you like light fluffy crust I put my baking sheet on the top of my oven while preheating and let rise. Otherwise set aside in neutral area till oven is ready at 425F. Cook 12-14 minutes until crust is golden brown and cheese bubbles.

Deb made the Pizza Sauce last Wednesday in our kitchen using our organic tomatoes (that we froze this summer), onions, sunflower oil, garlic, oregano, basil, fennel seed, salt, & black pepper.  The smell from the kitchen was incredible and farm lunch delicious.  It's coming to you frozen for easy delivery.  Defrost and put on your pizza or freeze it for later use.  You can of course use this on pasta too.

We are also sending out our sauerkraut which Deb made with our cabbage.  It will make a nice acompaniment to the Yak sausage for those of you who also get the meat share and great accompaniment Annie's mustard roasted potatoes and many other meals too.  We make kraut the old fashioned way.  Deb grates the cabbage and then pounds it into barrels in between layers of salt and fermentation begins.  Several months later, it is pleasingly mild and light flavored and full of health benefits.   It should last in your fridge for several weeks at least. A bit about fermentation... Lactobacilli are present on the surface of all living things. Left to ferment, lactobacilli convert the starches and sugars in vegetables and fruits into lactic acid, and it is this action that preserves this sauerkraut and many fermented foods. The benefits of lactobacilli go far beyond just preservation. The proliferation of the lactobacilli on fermented foods enhances their digestibility and increases vitamin levels. The lactobacilli produce numerous beneficial enzymes as well as antibiotic and anticarcinogenic substances and lactic acid also promotes the growth of healthy flora throughout the intestine. This is an excellent food and it is highly recommended that we each eat a small amount of fermented vegetables each day.

Another round of eggs from Deb's hens too.  Take note, Deb has been raising a new flock of pullets (young hens) to replace these girls that are laying for us now.  The young hens have started to lay now and in the coming weeks there will be a flock change.  We have scheduled eggs again for Dec 19, but after that there maybe a longer than 2 week span before the new flock is laying enough eggs for another delivery.  Right now I have them penciled into Jan 9 but we'll see how it goes.
 
 

Meat Share
 
Ray Shatney and Janet Steward raise award winning Scotch Highland Cattle in Greensboro, those red hairy cows. Over centuries, Scotch Highland Cattle have evolved to be very efficient grazers, able to yield great meat on a grass only diet. Their heavy hair coat enables them to stay warm without packing on additional fat, so the meat contains far less fat than other breeds. This week we have Greenfield Highland Beef Short Rib, a piece of meat that begs to be slow cooked until it is falling from the bone. Scotch Highland short ribs are unique in that they have a higher proportion of meat to bone than other short ribs. The reason for this is because Highland Cattle need to be able to forage for large amounts of food when it is available, and so they have more "spring of ribs" than other breeds. Their rib bones are thinner so they can expand to hold the quantity of food available, and there is more muscle between each rib to accomodate that stretching.  This is a special cut to be savored.
 
Starbird Fish Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon - This summer I was contacted by Anthony Naples of Starbird Fish, a local Vermonter who spends part of his year fishing in Alaska (pictured below). In Fall he flies back his catch frozen, and stores it locally and sells to CSAs and others who are interested. 
 
Wanting to understand more about the sustainability of Alaskan salmon I did a little research on the Alaskan fishery, and it's a cool story, the fishery is really well managed, a sustainability success story.  The state is divided up into 12 or so distinct geographic fisheries.  Each of these has rivers that run to the sea, up which salmon must run to spawn.  In order to maintain healthy stocks of salmon, a critical number of fish must be able to escape being caught ("escapement") and migrate upriver.  Biologists monitor escapement and fisheries are opened and closed daily to ensure adequate escapement numbers.  Adequate numbers of fish going upstream should mean adequate numbers of eventual offspring.  Alaska also has a highly regulated state run permit system and only permitted fisherman are alowed to fish within the Alaskan waters.  This overall control in the fishery has had excellent success in maintaining yields and the health of the fish and ecosystem.  The fish you will receive this week is sockeye salmon a high quality type of salmon known for firm red flesh, high fat content, good flavor.
 
McKnight Farm Organic Burger - The burger this week comes from McKnight Farm in East Montpelier.  Seth Gardner is a long time organic dairy farmer and we have been working together on a plan to regularly include Seth's beef in the Good Eats meat share.  You'll be seeing more of his beef in shares ahead.
 

 
This week you will receive either grass fed Vermont Yak Company Hoppy Brats made with Harpoon Ale  or Hot Italian Sausage made with lean, keen, and grassfed green yak meat.  These sausages have 1/6 the fat of beef and 40% more protein.  Vermont Yak Company was founded in 2008, the idea for the partnership born over a few beers and the quandary of what two of the families ought to do with their idle farmland. Naturally, Yaks came to mind. 
 
Vermont Yak Company now has 45 animals and demand for their meat is steadily growing. They are the only working yak meat business in all of New England. 
 
 
 
What To Do If You Have a Problem at Pick Up

Although we do our best to make sure that every delivery and pick-up goes smoothly, there are the occasional shortages and disappointments. Should you arrive at your pick-up site to find that your name (or share partner's name) is not on the list, one or more of your items are missing or that some of your produce is in unsatisfactory condition, please let us know right away!
 
Our goal is 100% satisfaction. If you email us (or call if you can't email) as soon as you discover the problem, we may be able to resolve it the same day or the following day. If you would like to receive an item that you missed at pick-up, you must contact us by Thursday morning.

If we have not heard from anyone, by Friday our site hosts are instructed to donate leftover food, ensuring that they do not end up with bad food on their hands.

If we can not resolve your issue right away, email us to arrange a replacement or substitution the following week.
 
 
Recipes
 
 
Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon Vinaigrette
One of my favorite salads of the year, this one suits the season perfectly.  When you have bacon leftover from a big Sunday breakfast, just crumble it into this salad for lunch!  Toss in your sweet salad turnips for a little extra crunch.
 
4 ounces baby spinach
2 large white mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 small or medium red onion, very thinly sliced
1 large egg, hard-boiled, chilled, peeled and thinly sliced
4 pieces thick-sliced bacon (about 4 ounces), finely diced
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon honey or sugar
1/2 teaspoon smooth Dijon mustard
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
 
Place spinach in a large, wide salad serving bowl. Scatter with mushrooms, red onion (see above for a different, mellower way to add the onions) and coins of hard-boiled egg. In a large skillet, fry bacon bits over medium-high heat until they’re brown and crisp and have rendered their fat. Use a slotted spoon to scoop them out of the skillet and spread them on a piece of paper towel briefly before sprinkling them over the salad. Pour out all but two tablespoons of hot bacon fat from the skillet. Reheat over medium and quickly whisk in the red wine vinegar, honey and Dijon. Pour over entire salad and season salt and pepper. Toss gently and serve hot. 
 
 
 
Pasta with Red Chard and Garlic ChipsAn easy option for a lazy night in the kitchen.  Good and garlicky.  Subsitute any cooking greens for the chard (spinach, kale, pac choi, whatever you have left in the fridge).  Great use for this week's spinach, chard, radicchio mix too!
 
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, cloves peeled and thinly sliced lengthwise though I am sure crosswise would work as well
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup dried currants (optional)
1 bunch red chard and/or spinach, stems and center ribs finely chopped and leaves coarsely chopped separately
1/4 cup water
1/2 pound spaghetti
1/4 cup Kalamata olives, cut into slivers
3 ounces feta, crumbled (1 1/2 cups)
 
Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium heat until it shimmers, then cook garlic, stirring, until golden, about 3 minutes. Transfer garlic with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain.  Cook onion in oil remaining in skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3 to 5 minutes.
 
Stir chard stems into onion mixture with water and 3/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Cook, covered, over medium-high heat until almost tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in chard leaves and cook, covered, until stems and leaves are tender, about 5 minutes.
 
Meanwhile, cook spaghetti in a pasta pot of boiling salted water (2 tablespoons salt for 5 quarts water) until al dente. Reserve 1 cup pasta-cooking water and drain spaghetti.
Toss spaghetti with chard, olives, and 1/2 cup cooking water, adding more cooking water if necessary. Season with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with feta and garlic chips.
 
 
 
Fresh Ricotta and Red Onion Marmalade Pizza
Needs no explanation.  Such a good use for this week's red onions.
 
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 cups thinly sliced red onions
1 1/2 teaspoons golden brown sugar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Pinch of dried crushed red pepper
1 cup fresh ricotta cheese
6 to 8 thin slices prosciutto (speck works as well)
Pizza dough for one pizza
Handful of spinach (optional)
 
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and sugar. Cook until dark brown and tender, stirring frequently, about 16 minutes. Mix in vinegar and crushed pepper. Cook until mixture is thick, about 1 to 2 minutes more. Season marmalade generously to taste with salt and pepper.
 
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 500°F. Roll pizza dough out onto the back of a baking sheet, sprinkled with cornmeal. Brush with remaining 1 tablespoon of oil; sprinkle with salt. Spread onion marmalade over the crust, dollop ricotta all over the onion layer and top with slices of prosciutto. Bake until caramelized and crusty, about 10 to 12 minutes.  Scatter spinach over the top right before the pizza is done, while it's still in the oven, so the leaves just barely have time to warm and wilt.
 
 
Easy Greenfield Highland Beef Short Ribs
These 2 recipes were provided by Janet & Ray, producers of this special beef.  Both recipes are sure to deliver great results. 

1.5-2.5 lbs short ribs
1 small leek, chopped white part only
1 small onion, chopped
2 c. chopped celery
1 large carrot, diced  
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced  
2 cups red wine or broth
1 Tbsp tomato paste      
Kosher salt          
Fresh ground pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the short ribs on a sheet pan, sprinkle with salt and pepper, roast for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees. Heat oil in Dutch over, sauté fennel, leek, onion, celery and carrots and cook over medium heat 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic, cook additional two minutes. Add tomato paste, wine or broth, salt, pepper and brown sugar and bring to boil. Place the ribs on top of the vegetables, cover the pot, put in oven and bake for two-three hours or until ribs are very tender, or place all in crock pot, cook 6 hours low or 3 hours high.

 
 

Even Easier Greenfield Highland Beef Short Ribs

1.5-2.5 lbs short ribs  
4-5 cloves garlic
2 cups wine, broth or combination

Brown short ribs in heavy skillet on medium high heat, five minutes each side. Place in crock pot with 4-5 cloves garlic peeled and sliced, wine and or broth, salt and pepper. Cook in crock pot 6 hours low or 3 hours high or in Dutch oven at 300 degrees for two-three hours or until ribs are very tender.
 
 
 
Mustard-Roasted PotatoesYou should really keep this on hand for any roots, anytime.  Keep it in a jar like salad dressing, ready for the roasting pan of CSA veggies. Try it with turnips, carrots, whatever you want.  If you like it, you'll like it with anything.
 
Nonstick vegetable oil spray
1/2 cup whole grain Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick or 1/2 ounce) butter, melted
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
3 pounds 1- to 1 1/2-inch-diameter mixed unpeeled red-skinned and white-skinned potatoes, cut into 3/4-inch-wide wedges
 
Position 1 rack in top third of oven and 1 rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 425°F. Spray 2 large rimmed baking sheets with nonstick spray. Whisk mustard, olive oil, butter, lemon juice, garlic, oregano, lemon peel, and salt in large bowl to blend. Add potatoes; sprinkle generously with freshly ground black pepper and toss to coat. Divide potatoes between prepared baking sheets, leaving any excess mustard mixture behind in bowl. Spread potatoes in single layer. Roast potatoes 20 minutes. Reverse baking sheets and roast until potatoes are crusty outside and tender inside, turning occasionally, about 25 minutes longer.
Transfer potatoes to serving bowl.
 
 
 
Roasted Turnips with Parmesan
Although your salad turnips are really great raw, a little parmesan and roasting time never did anything any harm…
 
2 pounds salad turnips, quartered
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan (1/2 ounce)
 
Preheat oven to 475 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet, combine turnips, cayenne, nutmeg, and oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss well to coat. Sprinkle with Parmesan and toss gently to combine. Arrange turnips in a single layer and roast until golden on both sides, 25 to 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.
 
 
 
Sauteed Chard with Toasted Breadcrumbs
This is another recipe to keep on hand, for any cooking greens.  Breadcrumbs add a great crunch to a bowl of hot buttery greens.
 
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 bunch chard
 
In a 5-quart saucepan, melt 1/2 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Add fresh breadcrumbs and a pinch each of coarse salt and ground pepper. Cook, tossing, until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside; wipe pan with a paper towel.  Slice chard crosswise 3/4 inch thick, keeping stems separate from greens.
 
In pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high. Cook stems, stirring, until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Add greens; cover and cook over medium-low until wilted, 5 minutes. Uncover; cook, stirring, over medium-high until pan is dry, 6 to 8 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper; add a pinch of sugar, if desired. Top with breadcrumbs.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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