Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Good Eats Newsletter - December 2nd, 2015

It's Giving Tuesday!
Learn More Below
Localvore Members 
& Regular Veggie Only Share Members
This week your bag will contain:
Spinach, Potatoes, Carrots, Beets, Leeks, 
Chard, Napa Cabbage, Lettuce
And OUT of the bag:
Butternut Squash
Localvore Offerings Include:
Sweet Rowen Farmers Cheese
Bread and Butter Farm Bread
Tangletown Eggs
Half Veggie Only Members
Spinach, Potatoes, Carrots, Leeks, 
Chard, Napa Cabbage
And OUT of the bag:
Butternut Squash
Learn more about how you can support the Vermont Farm Fund this Giving Tuesday!
Support your neighbors and help grow the local food system!
Learn more about Giving Tuesday here, and the Vermont Farm Fund here.
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Don't forget to spread the word about our Fall/Winter CSA to your friends and family this holiday season; they can still sign up!
Giving Tuesday:
Give Back to Your Community with the
Vermont Farm Fund
On this Giving Tuesday, we ask that you consider contributing to the local food system in a meaningful and powerful way by making a donation to the Vermont Farm Fund. A revolving loan fund, the VFF helps Vermont farm and food businesses grow enterprises, recover from disasters, and innovate new solutions to increase their impact on the community.
VFF began here at Pete’s Greens, after our barn burned down early in 2011. The outpouring of monetary support from the local community left Pete tremendously grateful and humbled, yet also inspired put this money back into the local community where it could help others build and grow their food businesses. Partnering with the non profit Center for an Agricultural Economy, the Vermont Farm Fund was born. Now, farmers and food business owners can take out loans from a local entity, reducing the barriers to growing their business, and empowering them to help future farmers when they pay back their loans. Since 2011, $491,000 has been loaned out through this revolving fund, making this a powerful way to grow Vermont communities and enable self-sustainability. 
This week’s all-VFF Localvore share highlights some of the many incredible ways that their loans have helped Vermont food businesses. We hope that you will consider contributing to the Vermont Farm Fund as a means of supporting your neighbors in growing Vermont’s local food movement.
Sweet Rowen Farmstead
When a freak fire destroyed Sweet Rowen’s leased bottling facility back in 2011, Paul Lisai used an Emergency Loan from the VFF to help build his own creamery on family land. Grateful that he didn’t have to sit at the bank and wait for a decision, Paul had his check from the VFF only two weeks after he applied. And, according to Paul, “Not having to make that first payment for a full year and, no interest to boot, gave us the means to concentrate on rebuilding.”
Bread and Butter Farm 
With their range of offerings outpacing their available building space, Bread and Butter Farm found themselves having to rotate bread baking; wash ’n pack; burger night; and educational events out of a single facility. A $20,000 Business Builder Loan helped Corie and Adam fund a combined renovation/addition of their existing facilities, giving more dedicated space to each business function.
Tangletown Farm 
We caught you up on two-time borrower Tangletown Farm a couple weeks ago, and how their VFF loans have helps establish and grow their egg business. The new loan that they took out last month will help them increase their flock of layers, improve their management of the birds and even make the retired gals available as ground pet food!
These local farms demonstrate the diversity and success of the Vermont Farm Fund. Each of these borrowers and many others have used the VFF to improve infrastructure, capacity, and diversity in their businesses. Your donation to the VFF will support the continued evolution and momentum behind Vermont’s agricultural economy!
Storage and Use Tips 
Spinach - We are excited to have a bag of spinach in the shares this week! This batch is made up of mid-sized leaves that are still tender enough to rip up and eat in salads. Wash the leaves in a sink or large bowl full of water, letting any sandy residue sink to the bottom. Lift out of the water and drain. You can also steam or wilt but will result in a smaller volume.
Potatoes - This week's potatoes are a mix of nicola (yellow), peter wilcox (purple), and modoc (red). A great mix for roasting, mashing, or salads. Leave the skin on while cooking for a visually pleasing dish. 
Carrots - Carrots are in the family Apiaceae, or the umbel family. Other members of the family include parsley, dill, parsnips, and fennel. Because carrots are biennial, they do not flower in the "first year", during which we typically eat them. Carrots store well in part because the plants are surviving in hopes of a second year of growth and reproduction. In storage, they actually increase their Vitamin A content for several months. Store in your crisper drawer to ensure that they retain needed moisture.
Beets - Golden beets are in the large share this week. They're great shredded and eated raw, or cubed and roasted.  Store raw beets loosely wrapped in a plastic bag in your crisper drawer.
Chard - Beautiful red chard is in your shares this week. Chard works great as a spinach substitute but needs to be cooked down a bit longer.  It also works well in soups and stews, or sauteed as a side.
Leeks - The leeks in your shares this week make a great substitute for onions in any recipe, but they're especially great in combination with potatoes in any dish, from pot pies to soups. Store in your crisper drawer, and rinse inside the leaves before chopping up.
Napa Cabbage - Napa cabbage is also known as Chinese cabbage, and works great shredded in Asian salads and stir frys. It's a bit sweeter than other cabbages, and will work as a great substitute for other cabbages in recipes.
Lettuce -Large shares will have head lettuce this week. Perfect for salads and sandwiches. Store in your crisper drawer. If you've run out of crisper space, some sources recommend separating leaves rolling in a paper towel, and placing in a hard-sided container in your fridge to prevent the leaves from being crushed.
Butternut Squash - Butternuts are a versatile squash that is great for cubing and cooking on your stovetop or roasting. They can be peeled with a vegetable peeler to easily remove the skin. No need to store 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.
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 Shelf, 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
As you know, our Localvore share is made up entirely of VFF borrowers' farm products this week! We hope that as you enjoy these foods you will be reminded of the support our Vermont community has for its own farmers and producers, and that you will consider donating to support the continued growth of the VFF.
3-Seed Bread from Bread and Butter Farm is their signature bread, made with organice whole rye and whole wheat, with sunflower, sesame and flax seeds. There's no beating a hearty slice of this bread toasted and topped with a thick slab of fresh butter. Adam suggests storing the bread on your counter in a paper bag for up to a week. It can be refreshed by warming it in the oven for 10 minutes to bring its fresh flavor and texture back to life.
Tangletown Eggs are the best around for flavor and freshness. These eggs provide vitamins and nutrients in addition to protein, which are packed into each egg from the rich and varied diet the hens are fed. The eggs' flavor and goodness are especially highlighted when poached or sunny side up!
Sweet Rowan Farmstead's VT Herb Farmer's Cheese is also a great addition to some crusty bread. This cheese is similar to cream cheese, and is spreadable and delicious.
Meat Share
This week's meat share includes a Pete's Greens Whole Chicken, as well as McKnight Farm Organic Steak. (A small number of bags will have TWO packs of burger instead of steak, so you can look for this substitution if you'd prefer). You will also have Maplewind Farms Chorizo or Andouille Sausage, and VT99 Hot Dogs. VT99 is a a collaborative endeavor between Pete's Greens and Jasper Hill. The pigs raised for these pork products are fed a highly nutritious diet containing organic veggies from our farm and whey from Jasper Hill's cheesemaking process. The hot dogs, pictured, have been kid-tested and approved! They do not have a casing, and are a bit longer than your average store-bought franks. Enjoy!
Butternut Squash Soup with a Spicy Sausage Confit
This recipe is adapted from Nick Stellino includes a confit with peppers and asparagus. To make it more seasonally appropriate, substitute diced potatoes and finely chopped chard.
For the Soup:
4 tablespoons Olive Oil
12 garlic cloves, thickly sliced,divided
8 fresh sage leaves
1 white onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into ½-inch rounds
½ teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
½ cup brandy or sherry
2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
6 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
½ white onion, finely diced
1 cup spicy smoked sausage,
cut into ¼-inch dice
1 cup potatoes, finely diced
4 leaves finely chopped chard
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons brandy
2 tablespoons softened butter
Salt and pepper to taste
½ teaspoon truffle oil (optional,
for an extra kick)
½ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
In a stockpot, heat the extra light olive oil over high heat. Add 4 cloves of sliced garlic and the fresh sage leaves, and cook over medium-low heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the onion, celery, remaining garlic, carrots, thyme and red pepper flakes to the pot. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring well, until the onion begins to soften, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the brandy or sherry, bring to a boil, and stir well to dislodge the brown bits at the bottom of the pot. Cook until the brandy or sherry is reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the pieces of butternut squash and the chicken broth, and bring to a boil; reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 40 to 45 minutes, stirring well every 15 minutes. Add the soup, in batches, to a food processor and process it to a smooth, cream-like consistency. Strain, place the soup back in the stockpot, and keep warm. Serve the soup in bowls and garnish with the Sausage Confit. Top with a generous sprinkle of shredded Parmesan cheese.
For the Confit:
Cook the extra virgin olive oil over high heat until it sizzles, then lower the heat to medium-low. Add the diced onion, stir well, and cook for 2 minutes, then add the sausage, napa cabbage and chard, and mix together. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook, stirring well, for 1 more minute. Add the garlic and the red pepper flakes, and stir well for 1 minute. Then add the brandy and cook 1 more minute. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the butter, and stir well until completely melted. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add the optional truffle oil, stirring well before serving. Set the confit aside and keep it warm until you’re ready to use it.
Stir Fried Napa Cabbage and Carrots
Here's a simple quick recipe that you could serve with brown rice. This is a basic stir fry into which you could sub in other veggies, some cooked chicken or pork or beef, and garnish with scallions too. From the 75th Anniversary Edition of the Joy of Cooking.
Combine in small bowl:
2.5 TB tamari
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1 TB canola oil (or sunflower)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 TB fresh ginger, peeled and minced
2 cups shredded carrots
1 medium Napa Cabbage, thinly sliced
Minced parsley or cilantro
Heat a wok or large skillet over high heat. Add and stir fry the garlic and ginger for a few seconds taking care not to allow the garlic to brown. Add the carrots and stir fry for 3 minutes. Add the cabbage and stir fry until tender, about 3 more minutes. Add the tamari mixture and heat through, stirring to coat the vegetables. Serve garnished with minced parsley or cilantro.
Turkey & Leek Shepherd's Pie
A great way to use leftover turkey from Thanksgiving!
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 large leeks, white and light green parts only, well washed and thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced carrots
3 cloves garlic,minced
1/3 cup dry white wine
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage, or 1/2 teaspoon dried, rubbed
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups diced cooked turkey, or chicken
1 cup frozen peas
1/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Mashed Potatoes:
2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
1/2-3/4 cup nonfat buttermilk, (see Tip)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
To prepare filling: Preheat oven to 425°F. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add leeks and carrots and cook, stirring, until the leeks soften, about 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, 1 minute more.
Pour in wine and stir until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add flour and sage and cook, stirring constantly, until the flour starts to turn light brown, about 2 minutes. Stir in broth and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and the carrots are barely tender, about 5 minutes.
Add turkey (or chicken) and peas and season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer the mixture to a deep 10-inch pie pan or other 2-quart baking dish and set aside.
To mash potatoes and bake pie: Place potatoes in a large saucepan and add cold salted water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook, partially covered, until the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and return the potatoes to the pan. Cover and shake the pan over low heat to dry the potatoes slightly, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat.
Mash the potatoes with a potato masher or whip with an electric mixer, adding enough buttermilk to make a smooth puree. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in egg and 1 tablespoon oil.
Spread the potatoes on top of the turkey mixture. With the back of a spoon, make decorative swirls. Set the dish on a baking sheet and bake until the potatoes and filling are heated through and the top is golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes.
Spinach-Apple Salad With Maple-Cider Vinaigrette
This deluxe version of spinach salad features a tangy sweet maple syrup vinaigrette,  sliced apple, onion and and goat cheese and is topped with sweet curried pecans. Add lettuce or chard for a greater variety of greens.
Sweet Curried Pecans:
1 (6-oz.) package pecan halves
2 tablespoons butter, melted
3 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon curry powder
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
Maple-Cider Vinaigrette:
1/3 cup cider vinegar
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2/3 cup olive oil
1 bag spinach, coarsely chopped
1 cup chard or lettuce, broken into bite-sized pieces
1 Gala apple, thinly sliced
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 (4-oz.) package crumbled goat cheese
Prepare Pecans: Preheat oven to 350°. Toss pecans in butter. Stir together sugar and next 4 ingredients in a bowl; add pecans, tossing to coat. Spread in a single layer in a nonstick aluminum foil-lined pan. Bake 10 to 13 minutes or until lightly browned and toasted. Cool in pan on a wire rack 20 minutes; separate pecans with a fork.
Prepare Vinaigrette: Whisk together cider vinegar and next 4 ingredients. Gradually whisk in oil until well blended.
Prepare Salad: Combine spinach and next 3 ingredients in a bowl. Drizzle with desired amount of Maple-Cider Vinaigrette; toss to coat. Sprinkle with pecans. Serve salad with any remaining vinaigrette.
Quick and Easy Baked Chicken
This is a Mark Bittman recipe that is a real crowd pleaser.   
1 whole chicken, cut into 8 parts, skin on:  2 breasts, 2 wings, 2 drum sticks, 2 thighs
1/4 cup oil
1/4 cup fresh herbs (or 1-2 tsp dried)
salt and pepper (I use 1.5 tsp or so for a big whole chicken)
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Put the oil or butter in a roasting pan and put the pan in the oven for a couple of minutes, until the oil is hot or the butter melts. Add the chicken and turn it couple of times in the fat, leaving it skin side up. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and return the pan to the oven.
After the chicken has cooked for 15 minutes, toss about 1/4 of the herb or herb mixture over it and turn the pieces. Sprinkle on another quarter of the herb and roast for another 10 minutes.
Turn the chicken over (now skin side up again), add another quarter of the herb, and cook until the chicken is done (180 F , or you'll see clear juices if you make a small cut in the meat near the bone) a total of 30-50 minutes at most. Garnish with the remaining herb and skim excess fat from the pan juices if necessary; serve, with some of the juices spooned over it.
*Add several cloves of garlic
*Add a cup or so of chopped onion, shallot, or leek.
*Add a cup or so of sliced fresh mushrooms, after the first 15 minutes of roasting.
*Add 2-3 lemons. When the chicken is done, squeeze the hot lemon juice over it.
*Use Compound Butter, Flavored Oil, or a Vinaigrette from the beginning of the cooking or as a basting sauce during the cooking.
*Stir in a dollop of grainy French-style mustard when the chicken is done.
*Add a couple handfuls of cherry tomatoes and some black olives after turning the chicken skin side up again.
*Stir in a cup of any salsa in the last 10 minutes of cooking or spoon on top of the cooked chicken before serving.
Did you know that the Harbison Cheese from Jasper Hill (that you received in your Localvore share a few weeks ago) just took home 'Best American Cheese' at the 2016 World Cheese Awards? Harbison also took home a Super Gold award, placing it among the top 16 of 2700 entries!  Congratulations to the team at Jasper Hill!

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