Monday, September 2, 2013

Good Eats Newsletter - August 28, 2013

Localvore Members 
& Regular Veggie Only Share Members

This week your bag will contain:

Baby Spinach; Potatoes; Carrots; Eggplant;
Beans; Lettuce; Celery; Onions; Cucumber

And OUT of the bag:

Pint or Brown Bag of Tomatoes

Localvore Offerings Include:

Red Hen Cyrus Pringle Bread
Champlain Orchards Zestar Apples
Honest to Goodness Apple Cider Vinegar

Small Veggie Only Members
take a YELLOW BAG containing:

Baby Spinach; Potatoes; Carrots; Eggplant;
Lettuce; Celery; Onions

Fall/Winter Share
  It's hard to believe that the Summer Share
only has 6 weeks left!  The Fall/Winter share begins on October 16th.

We hope you will join us this fall and winter.   We'll be harvesting lots of good green food way into December.  Even through the dead of winter we'll be sending out salad fixings every week.  You will receive the wide variety of produce that you have become accustomed to.

Visit our website for more Fall/Winter Share info
or Sign up Now!

Storage and Use Tips

The potatoes are Large French Fingerlings.  These are awesome potatoes!   They aren't the standard size of a Fingerling potato (long and skinny) but the size of a regular potato with the delicate skin and flavor of a fingerling and a creamy yellow inside.  These potatoes can be used just like regular potatoes in an assortment of roasted, broiled, baked, grilled, or boiled dishes.  Store in a paper bag in a cool, dry place. No need to peel, just scrub clean before cooking.

The bunched carrots are crunchy and colorful.  Keep these in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge.

There are 2 different types of Eggplant - you will get either Black Beauty which is a traditional looking eggplant, or Japanese which is a long skinny one.  Eggplant prefers to be kept at about 50 degrees, which is warmer than most refrigerators and cooler than most kitchen counters, so it will do best with extra protection of your crisper drawer. Wrapping unwashed eggplant in a towel is a bit better than in plastic because the towel will absorb any moisture.  Keep your wrapped eggplant in the hydrator drawer of your refrigerator. Used within a week it should still be fresh and mild.

Large share members are getting green, yellow, and purple beans.  The beans are just about done on the farm so enjoy the last of the season's bounty.  You can steam these beans, incorporate them into a stir fry, or make them into a featured dish (recipes below). 

We have a variety of lettuce this week.  You will get a head of red leaf, red/green butterhead, salanova, or panisse.  All types are great as a salad or added to a sandwich.  I've been adding red leaf lettuce to my sandwiches lately and it makes such a nice, crunchy addition!

The celery is just gorgeous!  It's a hefty bunch with a nice bit of greenery at the top.  Add cut up celery to any recipe or enjoy it raw as a snack.  Now that the kids are back to school I know I'll be cutting some up and sending along in their lunches.  Be sure to save the greens - though you may not use it this week celery leaves make a great flavorful addition to soups so chop tops and then freeze in plastic bags for use this Fall.  You will be glad you did.

Veggie Storage and Use Tips are on our website too, so please bookmark the recipe and storage tip section.  I am sure you will find it useful.

Katt working on the beans.

Sterling College Viewbooks available for you tomorrow at your site!

Our neighbor, Sterling College, is a small and progressive college in Craftsbury Common, just up the hill from the farm. The Sterling curriculum focuses on the liberal arts through the lens of ecology, and they are one of very few colleges with a comprehensive program in sustainable agriculture. Sterling students and faculty grow a lot of their own food - about 20 percent of what's served in the dining hallis produced on the Sterling Farm, and many Sterling alumni go on to work in the Vermont food system.

Tim Fishburne, our wholesale manager, is a Sterling alum, and he's profiled in the newest edition of the Sterling Viewbook. This week, you can pick up a copy of the Viewbook with your share, and learn a little more about the college that the environmental activist and
author Bill McKibben calls "one of the most important places in the country."

Changes to Your Delivery?
If you will be away some upcoming week, and need to make changes to your share delivery, let us know at least 1 week before the change. You can have your share donated to the Food Pantry, or you can skip your share delivery and you will retain a credit on your account toward the purchase of your next share.

Localvore Lore

From Red Hen Baking Co. we have Cyrus Pringle bread, made entirely with VT grown wheat flours. Randy developed this delicious bread in 2009 following Tom Kenyon's (Aurora Farm, Charlotte) first successful harvest of a hard red winter wheat variety required for bread making. He has modified the bread a little since he first baked it, adding a little of Ben Gleason's whole wheat for a better flavor profile. The bread is named after Cyrus Pringle, a reknowned wheat breeder who lived and farmed in Charlotte in the late 1800s. The wheat varieties that he developed for our region are becoming popular again today with farmers who are returning to growing wheat locally.

I am loving the great apple varieties at Champlain Orchard already - we had 5 or 6 different varieties to choose from for this week's share.  We ended up going with Zestar apples which is an early Honeycrisp type of apple.  It has a sweet flavor and is great for fresh eating.

Jo Liddell and Bob Machim carved their homestead, Gingerbrook Farm, out of the woods of South Washington, VT 40 years ago. As they cleared for their fields, they found wild apple trees and decided to keep them. The land around their home is dotted with these old wild trees and it is from these trees and others nearby their farm that Bob makes their cider vinegar. This is the real macoy, Honest-to-Goodness cider vinegar as they call it, a health tonic, and almost good enough to drink straight! It starts with unpasteurized apple cider that Bob seeds with a "mother" culture of yeast that ferments the cider. The difference between apple cider gone bad due to the infiltration of natural airborne yeasts and a good artisanal cider vinegar is in controlling the process. The mother culture makes a big difference, as does the fresh cider used for the vinegar, and the aging process. Bob ages this vinegar for two years and pours the beautiful amber liquid from big wooden barrels in a corner of his home. In time, you may find a slippery gelatinous mass forms in your cider vinegar. Fear not!  This is just more "mother" forming in your jar.  Just remove it from jar and continue to use your vinegar.

I use cider vinegar for cooking, made into salad dressings, or just drizzled plain onto my salads.   Amy drinks it weekly in switchell that she uses as both an energy drink and electrolytes for running.   Here's her recipe: 1/2 cup cider vinegar, 1/4 molasses, 1 tsp ginger, 4 cups water.


Carrot Slaw
I love this easy recipe!  It travels really well so it's great for a picnic or potluck.

 2 pounds carrots, peeled and ends trimmed
 5 tbsp country-style Dijon mustard
 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
 3 tbsp minced fresh chives
 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
 2 lightly packed tsp orange zest (from 1 medium orange)
 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

Fit a food processor with the grating blade. With the processor running, feed carrots down the tube to grate them. (Use the hopper to push carrots through.) Alternatively, grate carrots on large holes of a box grater. (You should have about 6 cups.)
Whisk together remaining ingredients in a nonreactive mixing bowl until evenly blended. Add carrots, and, using clean hands, toss together until they are well coated. Season well with freshly ground black pepper.
Let marinate at least 15 minutes and serve.
Grilled Vegetable Kebabs
This is a great basic recipe for grilled kebabs.  Get creative with the veggie combinations!

5 c. vegetables (squash, onions, eggplant, cherry tomatoes, etc.)
1/4 c. balsamic vinegar
1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. chopped tomato
2 T. maple syrup (the real stuff)
2 T. chopped fresh herbs (basil, sage, thyme, rosemary etc)
1 T. lemon juice
4 cloves minced garlic
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper

Cut the vegetables into bite-size pieces or leave them whole, depending on their shape.  (For example, you’d want to chop up zucchini but not so much the cherry tomatoes.)  Place them in a large bowl.

Whisk together the remaining ingredients, pour the marinade over the vegetables and stir to coat.  Refrigerate.  Leave the vegetables to marinate for several hours (anywhere from 1 to 24 hours of marinating will do).

Thread the vegetables onto bamboo or metal skewers.  If you’re using bamboo skewers, it’s a good idea to soak them in water for at least 30 minutes so they don’t catch on fire when you put them on the grill.

Grill the kabobs over medium heat for about 8-10 minutes, turning once.

Tomato and Green Bean Salad
For a side salad, combine the following ingredients in a large bowl and toss them with the vinaigrette.  For a lunch or dinner salad add several ounces of cooked chickens, or chickpeas for a vegetarian option.

2 cups halved cherry or grape tomatoes (about 1 pint)
8 ounces trimmed green beans, steamed for about 5 minutes
1-2 tbsp capers
Salt and pepper to taste
3/4 cup olive oil (good quality) 
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar 
2  tablespoons water 
2  tablespoons honey 
1 1/2 teaspoons salt 
1/4 teaspoon pepper 

Combine vinegar, water, honey, salt and pepper in a blender. Drizzle olive oil into blender until combined.
Grilled Eggplant with Tomatoes, Basil and Feta
1 large eggplant (about 1 1/2 pounds), trimmed, cut lengthwise into 1-inch-thick slices
Coarse salt
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
2 cups cherry tomatoes (about 10 ounces), halved
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
1 ounce feta cheese, crumbled (about 1/4 cup)
Pinch of red-pepper flakes
1/4 cup packed fresh basil leaves, torn if large
Generously season eggplant slices with salt. Place vertically in a colander, overlapping them. Let stand 30 minutes; rinse and pat dry.

Preheat grill to medium-high. Liberally brush cut sides of eggplant with oil. Grill, turning once, until tender, about 4 minutes a side. Mix tomatoes, pine nuts, feta, red-pepper flakes, and oil; season with salt. Spoon over eggplant; top with basil.
Wilted Spinach Salad with Warm Apple Cider and Bacon Dressing
This recipe comes to you courteous of Gourmet, October 1991.
5 slices of lean bacon, chopped fine
 2 tbsp minced shallot
 1/2 cup finely chopped apple
 2 tbsp cider vinegar
 1 1/2 cups unpasteurized apple cider, or substitute apple juice
 1 tsp Dijon-style mustard
 1 tbsp olive oil
 1 pound fresh spinach, coarse stems discarded and the leaves washed well and spun dry
In a large skillet cook the bacon over moderate heat, turning it, until it is crisp, transfer it to paper towels to drain, and discard all but 2 tablespoons of the fat. In the fat remaining in the skillet cook the shallot and the apple over moderate heat, stirring, for 1 minute, add the vinegar, the cider, and salt and pepper to taste, and boil the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until it is reduced to about 1/2 cup. Whisk in the mustard, the oil, and salt and pepper to taste. In a large bowl toss the spinach with the warm dressing until it is just wilted and sprinkle the salad with the bacon.

Braised Celery
There aren't many recipes out there with celery as the star.  Here's one I found by Alton Brown on the Food Network recipe that got great reviews.
8 stalks celery, rinsed and trimmed, leaves chopped and reserved
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Pinch kosher salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup good quality beef stock or broth
Peel any of the fibrous outer stalks of celery with a vegetable peeler and slice into 1-inch pieces on the bias.

Heat the butter in a 10-inch saute pan over medium heat. Once melted, add the celery, salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes until just beginning to soften slightly. Add the beef broth and stir to combine. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook until the celery is tender but not mushy, approximately 5 minutes. Uncover and allow the celery to continue to cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the liquid has been reduced to a glaze. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with the reserved leaves.

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