Friday, September 18, 2015

Good Eats Newsletter - September 9th, 2015

Localvore Members 
& Regular Veggie Only Share Members

This week your bag will contain:
Mesclun, Cilantro, Zucchini, Garlic, Broccoli,
Head Lettuce, Onions & Edamame!

And OUT of the bag:
Brown bag of Tomatoes

Localvore Offerings Include:
Pete's Greens Sweet Basil Pesto
Champlain Orchards Sansa Apples
Tullochgorum Popcorn

Half Veggie Only Members
Mesclun, Carrots, Cilantro, Zucchini,
Garlic, Broccoli

And OUT of the bag:
Brown bag of Tomatoes,

Good Eats 
Fall/Winter CSA 
begins in 5 weeks  
Sign up
by September 26th
and we'll send you a
cool Pete's Greens T or hat or bag.

Storage and Use Tips

Mesclun - Our mesclun mix is constantly changing to reflect the seasons we are in, currently consisting of lettuceses, chards and brassicas.  Below is a photo of Steve taken end of last week - he was planting the very last succession of outdoor baby greens.  He's been planting baby greens every week since the ground could be worked in Spring.  Store sealed bags of mesclun in the fridge for 5-8 days.
Corn – Fresh corn is coming to you this week from Bob & Kim Gray (and son Charlie who picked it for you this week) at Four Corner Farm in Newbury.  They are not certified organic but use excellent growing practices on their farm.  Our corn successions have been ravaged by blackbirds and racooons this season.  We are hoping a new succession coming in a week or so will be better.  In the meantime, this corn is super sweet, enjoy.

Zucchini –  Zucchini sometimes gets a bad rap because the plants can be so prolific.  But I just love a zucchini in my fridge in summer.  If you can't use your zucchini right now though you can shred them and freeze in 2-cup increments. Then you can pull a frozen bag out in the dead of winter and make a fresh loaf of zucchini bread or throw into an omelet or soup.

Garlic - The first of our own garlic is here!  And we have a beautiful crop this year.  We hope to get it out to you fairly regularly through Fall.  Store your garlic in a cool dry place.

Broccoli - We have great broccoli coming now as we just started harvesting a new planting.  Expect more cauli and broc in weeks to come.  

Cilantro – A member of the carrot family and related to parsley, cilantro is the leaves and stems of the coriander plant (the seeds of the same plant are the spice known as coriander). Cilantro has a very pungent odor and is widely used in Mexican, Caribbean and Asian cooking. The leaves and stems can be chopped and added to salads, soups and sauces, and can garnish many meals. I toss cilantro into any Mexican dish I am making, and love it in summer when I have tomatoes to make salsa. If you can't use all your cilantro just yet and wish to save it for a future dish, you can freeze it. Wash and gently dry your cilantro with paper towels. Then either put sprigs loosely in a plastic bag and freeze them. Or lightly chop cilantro, measure by the tablespoon into ice trays, fill remaining space in ice tray with water, and then after cubes are frozen, store in a plastic bag. You can take one out and thaw anytime you need to use it.

Tomatoes – As you know, we carefully sort out tomatoes to look for blemishes to try to get the best ones to you. But some tiny blemishes can grow quickly once packed, so please let us know if your tomatoes aren’t satisfactory and send a photo if you can so we can see what is happening! Keep your tomatoes at room temperature for the best flavor and texture, and use them quickly!

Edamame - The edamame (soy beans) in your bag are still attached to the stalks.  They are most tender right after harvest and lose quality as the days pass and they sit in the fridge.  So eat these right up (or freeze- they freeze beautifully for later use).  To freeze, simply blanch for 2 minutes in boiling water, plunge into cold water to cool them and stop the cooking, then drain and pack into bags. 

Onions – You'll receive either white onions this week or white cippolinis.  Store in a cool dark place.  

Head Lettuce - Large share members will receive a green curly leafed head.  Make sure to dry your head lettuce some before bagging and putting in your fridge.

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.

Localvore Lore

More freshly harvested fruit today from Champlain Orchards!  It's the height of apple season and every week a couple new varieties become available.  This week it's Sansa, an early season fresh eating apple that is a cross between Gala (the second most popular US apple) and Akane varieties (a terrific early season  apple developed in Japan and brought to US middle of 1900s).  Similar to Gala but with more complexity and fruitiness.
The organically grown White Lightning Popcorn comes from Steve and Loraine Lalonde of Tullochgorum Farm in Ormstown, Quebec, situated in the beautiful Chateauguay Valley of South-western Quebec.  Because popcorn requires a longer growing season than most types of corn, Steve and Loraine consider their area to be at the northern limit of successfully producing this crop. To their knowledge, they are the only commercial producers of certified organic popcorn in Quebec. Once popped, White Lightning possesses a delicate, crispy texture, and a slightly nutty flavor, vastly different from the more common yellow popcorn varieties with which most people are familiar with, and a world away from microwave popcorn!

A whirly-pop machine (air popper) is recommended in the 2 recipes below.  But for making a bowl of just good old popcorn you can always use a stovetop method.

Pete's Greens Sweet Basil Pesto is back in the share again this week.  We put up enough pesto this year to be able to provide it fairly regularly in the CSA.  It's such a great staple to have in the freezer.  Pesto is the perfect super quick meal when you come in the door late with no idea what to make for dinner.  Keep it frozen until you know you will use it and then you won't waste it (and it's perfectly fine to use some and toss rest back in freezer for next time).  Our pesto is made with our own basil plus garlic, olive oil, parm and romano cheeses, sunflower seeds, lemon juice, and salt. 

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.


Pico de Gallo - Who doesn't love good fresh summer salsa?
3/4 pound tomatoes (about 2 medium), seeded and finely diced 
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup finely chopped white onion
1 clove finely minced garlic
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice, or more to taste
1/2 teaspoon fine salt, or 1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 small fresh jalape├▒o or serrano chile (you can use fresh or pull a frozen one from freezer and mince well - remember to remove seeds of it will be really spicy!)
Calabacitas con Elote (Zucchini with Corn) - This is a very popular Mexican side dish and easy to understand why.  This dish is delicious and satisfying.  You probably don't have cotija cheese in your fridge and that's OK, you can use some grated romano or parm, or even a good aged cheddar.  
2 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound zucchini, sliced
3 roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped
1 fresh poblano chile pepper - seeded, deveined, and chopped
salt and black pepper to taste
1/4 cup crumbled cotija cheese
*Optional for more flavor (or decadence in the case of the cream)
*add 1/2 tsp dried oregano when adding in the corn
*add 1/4 tsp nutmeg when adding in the corn
*add in 1/4 cup heavy cream when you add the tomatoes
*mix in 1/2 cup cilantro just before serving
Place the corn in a saucepan with enough water to cover; bring to a boil. Place a cover on the saucepan, reduce heat to medium, and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat; cook and stir the onion and garlic in the hot oil until fragrant, about 5 minutes. Mix the zucchini and tomato into the onion and garlic; cook together 5 minutes. Stir the corn kernels into the mixture; add the poblano pepper. Season with salt and pepper; stir. Cover the skillet with a lid and cook until the zucchini is tender, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with the cotija cheese to serve.
Edamame -  Super simple and delicious.  Kid pleaser.
Remove the pods from the stalks
Steam the edamame for about 10 minutes, pod and all
drain well, toss with coarse sea salt and serve.
Pop the beans right out of their pods right into your mouth, they will be tender and delicious. You can also shell the beans before cooking and then add them to other dishes you are making.  
Roasted Corn and Edamame Salad
Got leftover corn?  This is a perfect summer salad to make use of it.
2 ears fresh corn, unhusked, or 1 1/4 cups cooked corn kernels
1/2 cup shelled edamame
1/4 cup chopped red onion (or white or scallions)
1/4 cup small-diced red bell pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon light mayonnaise (can use rice vinegar here)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped or grated ginger
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Soak fresh corn in cold water about 30 minutes. Heat grill on high. Grill corn in husk, 10 to 15 minutes, turning once. Let cool. Remove husks. Cut corn from cob into a bowl; combine with remaining ingredients. Cover and chill in refrigerator until ready to serve.
Spicy Thai Coconut Quinoa - This delicious recipe will require gathering up a few ingredients but its worth it.
For the Dressing:
1 2/3 cups fresh cilantro (from about 1/2 bunch), bottom thicker part of stems removed
3/4 cup roasted, unsalted peanuts
1/3 cup Sriracha hot sauce
2 tablespoons finely grated lime zest (from about 3 medium limes)
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 3 medium limes)
1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
2 medium garlic cloves
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
For the quinoa:
2 cups quinoa, any color or variety
1 (14-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
1 1/3 cups vegetable stock or low-sodium vegetable broth
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
1 (14- to 16-ounce) package firm tofu
2 medium carrots 
1/2 to 1 lb broccoli
4 medium scallions
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
For the dressing:
Place all of the ingredients in a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed, about 1 minute; set aside.
For the quinoa:
Rinse the quinoa in a strainer under cold water until the water runs clear. Place in a large saucepan; add the coconut milk, vegetable broth, and measured salt; and stir to combine. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the white outer casings on the quinoa have popped, revealing translucent little beads, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, line a large plate with several layers of paper towels. Drain the tofu, cut it into large dice, and place it in a single layer on the paper-towel-lined plate; set aside. 
Trim the carrots and cut them into 1/8-inch-thick rounds; set aside. Make 1/8-inch thick slices of the broccoli stem and cut the head into 1-inch florets; set aside. 
Thinly slice the white and light green parts of the scallions; set aside.
When the quinoa is ready, remove it to a large serving bowl and set aside.
Rinse the saucepan, fill it with water, and season generously with salt. Cover with a tight fitting lid and bring to a boil over high heat.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the tofu and cook without stirring until the bottoms are golden brown, about 4 minutes. (While the tofu is cooking, line the plate you drained it on with fresh paper towels.) Flip and cook until the other sides are golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes more. Using a slotted spoon, remove to the paper-towel-lined plate and season with salt; set aside.
Add the carrots to the boiling water and cook until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove them to the bowl with the quinoa. Return the water to a boil, add the broccoli, and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Drain in a colander and place in the bowl with the quinoa and carrots.
Add the cooked tofu, dressing, and scallions to the quinoa bowl and stir to combine. Garnish with additional cilantro, peanuts, and scallions before serving.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Popcorn
Need a tasty treat to bring to a party? This popcorn fits the bill, especially when presented in pretty little package. These 2 popcorn recipes are from one of my favorite blogs, Annie's Eats.  

1/2 cup unpopped popcorn
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tsp. butter
2 tsp. brown sugar
coarsely chopped semi-sweet chocolate, or chocolate chips

Line two baking sheets with wax paper.  Pop popcorn in an air-popper (a Whirley Pop is highly recommended) Spread popcorn in an even layer on prepared baking sheets.  Combine peanut butter, butter, and brown sugar in a microwave-safe bowl.  Microwave in 20 second intervals and stir, until melted and drizzle-able. Drop the peanut butter mixture in spoonfuls over the popcorn and gently toss to coat evenly (I find this is best done by hand).  In another microwave-safe bowl, heat the chocolate in 20 second intervals until fully melted.  Drizzle over the popcorn.  Let the chocolate set before serving.  Store in an airtight container.
Parmesan Thyme Popcorn with Browned Butter
If you're looking for a more savory, grown up popcorn, this is a great bet!

2-3 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 clove garlic, grated (or finely minced)
½ tsp. fresh thyme leaves, minced
1 tsp. olive oil
1/3 cup popcorn kernels
2-3 tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste

Place the butter in a small skillet over medium heat.  Melt the butter completely.  Continue to cook, whisking frequently, until the butter foams, bubbles slightly, and begins to brown.  Continue whisking until the butter is evenly browned, being careful not to burn.  Just before it is finished, stir in the garlic and thyme.  Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.

In a popcorn popper, heat the olive oil over medium high heat.  Add the kernels to the pot, cover, and cook, stirring, until all the kernels are popped. Remove from the heat, add in the browned butter mixture along with the grated Parmesan and stir well to coat evenly.  Season with salt and pepper to taste, and stir once more.


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