Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Good Eats Weekly Newsletter - December 7, 2016

It's a Meat Week! If you have a Monthly Meat Share, don't forget your red bag!

Localvore Members 
& Full Veggie Only Share Members

This week your bag contains:

Mesclun Mix,  Parsley
Red Chard,  
Jerusalem Artichokes, Rainbow Carrots,  Red Beets
Shallots, Garlic

Out of the bag:
One Squash

Half Veggie Members
take a YELLOW BAG containing:

Mesclun Mix, Red Chard
Jerusalem Artichokes, Rainbow Carrots, Red Beets

Out of the bag:
One Squash

Localvore / Pantry Offerings

Fat Toad Caramel
Full Sun Canola Oil
Pete's Greens Chimichurri

*** Friendly reminder: Please, only take what is listed by your name! ***
"Your vegetables are first class, top notch, and awesome quality. Opening the bag each week is like a Christmas present. I look forward to each delivery!"
(actual comment from an actual member!)

You could make someone's Christmas bright this December with the gift of a Pete's Greens Good Eats CSA Share!

A CSA share is a great way to give meaningful gifts this Christmas and support a local small business.

You can buy a share in someone's name or give them a gift certificate for their own share!

Give the gift of fresh veggies!

To buy a gift share for the rest of the fall/ winter share, sign up here: 

To buy a gift share for Spring 2017, visit here: 

For other options, please contact Taylar at
Around the Farm

Thanks so much to everyone who filled out the veggie frequency survey! We're combing through the results to see how we've been doing and how we can improve the shares. 

Some of the key takeaways:
Squash is a favorite! We'll keep sending you squash as long as we have it! Expect to see it through the end of the year.

Things most of you want often: onions, salad greens, carrots, sweet potatoes, and kale.

Onions: We recognize there have been some bad onions. I sincerely apologize and have alerted our crew to be more thorough when sorting and packing. When we're packing the bags, we do test cuts of each onion crate. It can be hard to tell which are not-so-good, but we'll keep a more careful eye on this. If you ever have a bad onion or veg, please let me know!

Earlier newsletter: I wish I could send this out well in advance for the menu planners out there, but unfortunately we often have to adapt at the last minute. Sometimes it's changes to veggies or pantry items, other times it's pick-up instructions. If you're really curious, email me for a preliminary veggie list. I will try to get the newsletter out earlier in the day.

Thanks for the feedback! We appreciate knowing the good and the bad. 

~ Taylar

Sprouts taking seed!

Storage and Use Tips 
The mesclun mix this week includes a combination of claytonia, baby spinach, and lettuces. Claytonia is a winter green. Both shares are also receiving what might be the last of our chard. Chard can be eaten raw or cooked. It is a nice addition to scrambled eggs, cooked in a frittata, or added to pastas, sauces, and soups. Try cooking the stems first as they take longer. To get the maximum nutrition from greens, cook them longer at a lower heat. Enjoy this bout of freshness among the roots!
Sometimes confused with ginger, Jerusalem artichokes are a funky, knobby root and are often known as "sunchokes".  You might know of this plant as a beautiful yellow flower on tall stalks that blooms in summer (I found some growing in my yard this summer!). The tuberous roots, which appear in your shares, are edible. Eat with or without the skin and prepare as you would potatoes: roast, saute, bake, boil, or steam. They can be stored for a few weeks in your fridge. Some of you will find that your artichokes are red on the end. No, there was no bleeding involved but the combination of air, water, and the artichoke cause some varieties to turn red. I hope to find out more about this in the coming weeks. 
Both shares are receiving red beets and rainbow carrots. Multiple varieties of sweet winter carrots provide the rainbow of colors found in these roots. Beet colors stay true while cooking but if boiling together the red color will take over. I prefer to halve and roast in the oven on 350F. When beets are soft the skins are easily removed. Cool the beets and then dice or slice how you would while preserving the colors of individual beets. Toss in dressing etc when cool or reheat with a meal. Make sure to keep beets in fridge until you want to use.  If you don't use your carrots and beets right away, store them in your crisper drawer to make sure they retain needed moisture. 
A close onion relative, shallots are sweet and mild with a hint of garlic flavor. They work well raw, thinly sliced in salads or dressings. They can also be carmelized, like in this heavenly recipe, or sliced and carmelized like onions on your stovetop. Store in a dark, cool, dry place for up to one month.
And don't forget your OUT OF THE BAG squash. This week we have a winter medley of squash for you to choose from - pick a squash, any squash! Each squash is about 1.75 pounds. We have butternut squash available (the light tan color, shaped like a dumbbell), sweet sugar dumplings (yellow with orange coloring, very sweet), carnivals (looks like the dumpling but has green flecks - it's a cross between an acorn and a delicata), and acorns (greenish orange). All squash should be stored around 55 degrees. None of our squash are coated with any protective additives - it's their natural flesh! However, some squash may have blemishes that can be scraped off or even eaten as is. 

Need to Skip a Week?

If you're ever not able to pick up your share, please let us know at least one week in advance. We can either skip your share and give you credit, send it the next week, or donate it to the food pantry. It's up to you!

Sorry, we cannot skip a share or change pick-up sites with less than 48 hours notice.

** Heads up: There will be no delivery the week of December 26th **

Meat Share

The McKnight Farm Sandwich Steak is an organically grown, thinly cut piece of sirloin and is the cut that makes a Philly cheese steak. This meat takes only about 2 minutes in a hot pan to cook. Add peppers, onions, and tuck into a sandwich with your favorite cheddar. Or, fry it up with eggs for a traditional steak and eggs breakfast to keep you trucking through the morning. Also fantastic for Asian dishes that call for thin pieces of quick cooking beef and for steak salads.

This month features an array of fresh cuts from VT99, our partnership with Jasper HIll. These hams are about 3.5 pounds, plus or minus. They were cured and smoked but are not cooked. Ham is cut from the hind leg of the pig. It is leaner and a bit tougher than the meat from the shoulder
of the pig (called the picnic ham or the boston butt). Smoked hams have been smoked and cured; this is the salty ham you are most familiar with. Because they have been smoked they are partially cooked, but you still must cook these steaks. Maple sugar, maple syrup or honey are nice to add, particularly if you have children who like a sweeter flavor. Braising (cooking in liquid) works well so as not to dry out the meat. Also from VT99, you will have a dry-cured Salami that is perfect sliced at room temperature and paired with bread or crackers, cheeses, fruit, and olives. **The salami is out of the red bags.**

Lastly, you have ground pork. This is perfect for dumplings, meatballs, breakfast patties... the sky's the limit! Found a favorite use for it? Let me know!

Localvore Lore

This week's pantry share is full of all different flavors to excite your palate! Fat Toad Farm's caramel is a sweet treat perfect for topping ice cream sundaes. Pete's Greens Chimichurri is savory and a burst of flavor to any meal. And Full Sun's beautiful GMO-free, organic canola oil makes an earthy, full flavor for sautes, dressings, and marinades.

Fat Toad Farm in Brookfield is a family business (at right) makes goat’s milk caramel using traditional Mexican cooking methods and only a few simple, all-natural ingredients. This caramel is made in cajeta style, meaning largely using dairy products (as opposed to much of the conventional caramel sauce made with high fructose corn syrup). It’s this process that results in a creamy, not super sweet, caramel. At the start of 2016, Fat Toad Farm began a partnership with Vermont Creamery to source a year-round supply of fresh, local goat's milk from Ayers Brook Goat Dairy, a first-of-its-kind model goat dairy in the United States run by Vermont Creamery. You’re receiving a jar of Original Caramel flavor. Store it in the fridge to preserve freshness.

Started in 2014, Full Sun Company produces sunflower and canola oils sourced from around New England and cold-pressed to make artisanal oils. Full Sun is based in Middlebury. Their oil mill is New England's first non-GMO-verified mill. Currently, 2 - 3% of Full Sun's seeds are grown in Vermont or within a 100-mile radius. The rest come from farms contracted to grow the special canola seeds. This canola oil is low in saturated fat and contains healthy omega-3 and -6 fatty acids. This oil is a fresh and delicious craft oil to use every day for cooking, sauteeing, in marinades or dressings. Please keep in fridge for freshness!

Chimichurri was made in our kitchen at Pete's Greens. We thought it would be the perfect complement to the meat in your shares this week. This very flavorful Argentinian condiment is made with fresh parsley, cilantro, cider vinegar, jalapenos, garlic, olive oil, and salt.   It is usually served alongside meats, but it can also liven up a sandwich or eggs and toast, go along with grilled potatoes, or complement roasted veggies. For a super simple sandwich try a slather of chimichurri and good cheese between a couple slices of good bread. It's coming to you frozen.  You can use it right away or freeze for a few months before thawing out to enjoy. This is one of the most popular items in the pantry share! Let us know how else you use it.


Jersualem Artichokes with Parsley
Total time: about 10 minutes. Serves 3 - 4

1- 1 1/4 lbs Jerusalem artichokes, sliced 1/4 inch (note: small shares are getting about 1.5 pounds while large shares are getting 1 pound)
2 T chopped fresh parsley
1/2 T butter
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper

To start, bring a pot of water to a boil and add the sliced Jerusalem artichokes.  Return the water to a soft boil and cook about 3-5 minutes, until chokes are tender but not soft.  Drain cooked chokes and return to the pot used for boiling.  While the cooked Jerusalem artichokes are still hot, add the butter and stir, melting the butter and coating evenly.  Add the garlic and parsley and stir to combine, then season with salt and pepper to taste.

Simple Roasted Sunchokes

.5 pound sunchokes, sliced into half-inch rounds
.5 pound potatoes or carrots, sliced into half inch rounds
2 Tablespoons oil
1 TB lemon juice
Sprinkle with dried Rosemary or thyme
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the sunchokes with the oil & lemon juice. Sprinkle with the herbs. Bake in a shallow gratin dish with the herbs for thirty to forty-five minutes or until done. (Pierce them with the tip of a knife. They should be mostly tender but offer some resistance. Don’t let them get mushy.) Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve immediately.

Roasted Beets and Blue Cheese Salad
Adapted from Michael Symon’s recipe on

1 pounds red beets
4 TB olive oil
1 tablespoons sea salt (plus a bit more at end at your discretion)
2-4 ounces blue cheese
1 orange juiced and zested (or subsititute a bit of lemon juice or a bit of apple cider vinegar)

Brush beets with 1 TB olive oil and sprinkle with 1 TB salt (this seems like a lot but beets will get skinned later removing much of the salt). Place in a preheated 400 degree oven and bake for 1 hour or until beets are tender. Remove skin from beets and slice into 1/4-inch thick discs and set aside. Place beets on plate. Top with crumbled blue cheese. Drizzle with remaining olive oil, zest and orange juice. Sprinkle with sea salt to taste and serve.

Roasted Beets and Carrots with Rosemary Garlic Butter
You can make a big batch of this recipe and use the leftovers to add color and flavor to a green salad, or serve with eggs for a healthy breakfast!

3 cups cubed peeled red beets
2 cups cubed peeled carrots
3 tablespoons butter or ghee
3 garlic cloves, mashed
½ teaspoon dried rosemary
Sea salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Place the beets in a large mixing bowl, and the carrots in a 9 inch by 13 inch glass baking dish. (Mixing the roots separately keeps the carrots from turning pink from beet juice.)

Place the butter or ghee in a microwave-safe coffee mug and add the garlic. Microwave until the butter is melted. Stir in the dried rosemary.

Pour half of the melted butter mixture over the beets, and pour half over the carrots. Sprinkle generously with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Toss each of the root vegetables to coat them with the butter mixture.

Transfer the beets into the baking dish with the carrots.
Roast for 55 minutes, stirring halfway through. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Beets with Pistachio Butter
This is a huge hit every Thanksgiving! It's super simple - cook the beets (roasted or boiled) and add the pistachio butter! Eat the beets hot or cold. From Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian

4 large or 8 medium beets
½ cup neutral oil like grapeseed or corn or pistachio oil
4 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
1 cup shelled pistachios (can also substitute walnuts)
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Bake the beets in covered roasting pan at 400 until tender about 45-90 minutes.  Meanwhile, put half the oil in a skillet over medium heat.  When hot, add garlic and cook for about a minute, then add pistachios; cook, stirring often, for about 3 minutes.

Remove from heat, let cool a bit, and transfer to a food processor.  Puree until smooth, adding more oil as necessary; the consistency should be thinner than that of peanut butter, just pourable.  Taste and adjust. 
The pistachio butter can be covered and refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Slip the skin off of beets and cut them into chunks. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Put the beets in a serving dish and spoon the pistachio butter over the top; garnish with chopped pistachios.  Serve hot or at room temperature.

(variation) Carrots with Walnut Butter
Substitute roasted carrots cut into chunks, for the beets and walnuts for the pistachios.  Toss the carrots in some oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast at 375 F until tender.  Proceed with recipe.

Chimichurri Steak Sandwich
Extra virgin olive oil
1 Spanish onion (or other white or yellow onion)
kosher salt
Pinch of crushed red pepper
Kaiser rolls
½ lb. Camembert (or other cheese of your choice)

Preheat the broiler. Season the steak generously with salt and let sit for 10 minutes before cooking.
Coat the pan used for the onion with olive oil and place over high heat. You want to get it REALLY hot—the oil should almost be smoking. Working in batches so you don’t crowd the pan, cook the steak slices for about 1 minute on each side. Reserve the cooked slices and repeat until all the steak is cooked.

Cut the rolls in half and toast under the broiler.

Divide the steak evenly among the 4 rolls. Arrange the sautéed onion in an even layer on top of the steak, then drizzle the meat with the chimichurri. Place 2 slices of Camembert on each sandwich and transfer to the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the cheese is really nice and melty.

While the cheese melts, coat a nonstick sauté pan with olive oil and bring to medium heat. Crack the eggs into the pan and fry until the whites are cooked through but the yolks are still runny.

Top each sandwich with a sunny-side up egg and finish with a BIG drizzle of the chimichurri. Close the sandwich, squish it, get lots of napkins, and eat the deliciousness.

Pork Fried Rice
Fried rice is a great way to use up veggies hanging out in your fridge. While this recipe, which comes from Martha Stewart, uses peas and carrots, try throwing in any leftover tatsoi or leek from last week or finely diced squash, or whatever veg you prefer. This recipe should only take about 30 minutes. To make vegetarian friendly, omit the pork or substitute tofu.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons plus 1/4 teaspoon soy sauce
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1 bunch scallions, white and green parts separated and thinly sliced (could also use leeks)
1/2 pound ground pork
2 carrots, shredded
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 cups cooked white rice (about 3/4 cup uncooked rice)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar (no rice vinegar? use distilled white vinegar instead)

In a wok or large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over high. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, lightly beat eggs with 1/4 teaspoon soy sauce to combine. Add eggs to wok and swirl to coat bottom of pan. Cook, without stirring, until almost set, 1 minute, then fold in thirds with a spatula. Transfer cooked eggs to a work surface and cut into 1/2-inch pieces.

Add 1 tablespoon oil to wok and swirl to coat. Add garlic, ginger, and scallion whites and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add pork and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Add carrots, peas, and rice and stir to combine. Add cooked egg, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, and vinegar and cook, stirring constantly, until rice is coated, about 1 minute. Let cook, undisturbed, until warm, about 1 minute. Top with scallion greens and serve.

Cooking a Ham
Cooking a smoked ham is a bit different than cooking hams you get from the supermarket that have been sugared, brined and pre-cooked. The first thing to think about is making sure your ham is thawed all the way through. The next step is finding the right pan to roast your ham in. The best way to roast meat is using a roasting rack that elevates your meat and allows air flow under the meat as well as allowing your meat to drip, and not cooking it in the juices. Next lets talk rub, it is a good idea to put a flavoring rub on the outside of the ham, Amy prefers a basic olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper (note this is different than a glaze). Last you will want to think about a glaze. The glaze can be made out of many sugary combos, a simple one Amy uses is a brown sugar glaze (2 c brown sugar, 1 c apple cider (or orange juice), 1 tsp ground cloves), but there are many out there with very interesting flavors. Mix glaze ingredients, bring to a boil and simmer over medium heat for 10-15 minutes, set aside until it cools and thickens.

Option 1: Ham with Glaze
Preheat oven to 500F. First wash off the ham and dry with a paper towel. Set ham on roasting rack, fat side up. Score the fat with a knife making an argyle impression in the outer layer of fat. Then literally rub on the rub with your hands or a pastry brush. Cook for 20 minutes at 500F, this will result in good crackling of the outer fat layer. Remove from oven and apply glaze with pastry brush. Reduce heat and continue cooking at 350F. Glaze every 45 minutes until internal temp is 145-150F, about a total of 2 1/2 hours. Save extra glaze to pour over ham when serving.

Option 2: Ham with Rub
Thaw your fresh ham, and cut off the fat. Cover with a dry rub (for example, garlic powder, sea salt, paprika and fresh ground black pepper).  If you have time, put ham in a covered container in the fridge for 4 - 24 hours. The longer it sits with the rub, the more flavors it will absorb (but it can also be started right away). 
Cook in a 225 degree oven for 1 hour per pound (until about 145-150 degree internal temperature is achieved). Alternatively, place it in your crockpot with some liquid (water, stock, or wine, about 1.5 cups), and cook on low for 7-8 hours. This way you can start it in the morning and forget it! You can add potatoes, onions, and carrots to the pot roast as well. The meat should fall apart relatively easily with a fork. It’s great on its own, or try it on a sandwich!

No comments: