Looking Ahead

Walking around the farm on a chilly fall morning, it is exciting to see how great the cabbages and the chard, and the other greens are looking.  But even more exciting is seeing the garlic shooting straight up, nice and green.  When I picked a bit off, the garlic aroma was strong and delicious.  Walking further out we came to the strawberry beds.  These are the plants that went into the ground this past August.  They, too, are looking vibrant and strong.  The leaves are a beautiful dark green and the plants are full and lush.  These plants are promises of goodness to come next spring and summer.

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Mixing Seeds

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Much of what we plant on the farm is started for us by the company Headstart. Doing our own starts is challenging; the pH of our water is not ideal, and it requires man power to manage, which we don’t have. Years ago, Nigel made the decision to give up doing starts on the farm and sent them all to Headstart. The past few years we have done mixed seeds for many of our crops because it made harvesting a bit easier, and saved us tremendous money on our start costs. Headstart charges $157 for 1,000 plants, but when we jump to 2,001 plants, the price drops to $83 per 1,000.  If we can get up to 5,001 it goes down to $54 per 1000. As you can see, we save a lot by sowing more seeds, and clearly being able to mix varieties really helped.

Unfortunately, this year, Headstart decided we could no longer send them seeds, AND no more mixing.  This is a problem for a few reasons, firstly, we don’t need 5,000 seeds of each variety at each planting.  As an example, we grow several types of cabbage: pointy cabbage, red, green, savoy, napa and a few different varieties of each of those types. It is important for us to maintain a good variety for the CSA shares, because no one wants red cabbage, week after week. What you do with savoy cabbage can be quite different to what you do with a pointy or a red cabbage. Clearly growing only 1,000 of each would make our Headstart costs astronomically expensive. You can understand the predicament we are in, and this is on top of our novice farmer status. 

But we persevered, Nigel taught us that for sure, and with some juggling, Cameron and I came up with ways to modify the orders. Now we will get half the variety mix in the first delivery, and the rest of the varieties in the second.  The deliveries are only two weeks apart, so there shouldn’t be any problem with a lack of variety. We still won’t be able to hit the cost breaks Nigel was able to reach, but we will make it work.

Working On Seeds

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Cameron and I spent much of the week working on the seed/plant orders for the coming year. After hours of compiling information from the last two years’ invoices for seeds, plants, and Headstart orders, it is time to start putting orders together, and get next year’s plan on paper.  Cameron did an amazing job of collating that massive amount of information, and I can assure you it wasn’t simple.  Nigel never planned for not being here, and so we don’t have a list to guide us through this process.  There are no simple or clear records of exactly what he ordered, when they were planted, how much was planted, how he put his mixes together, so it has been an enormous project pulling that puzzle apart and putting it back together again. I believe he never truly understood just how amazing his brain was, and how much information he juggled all the time, and how that is not a simple thing to decipher. 

None the less, we have come to a place where PO’s are being generated, and we are getting a sense of what we will grow next year and when. I am sure there will be a few things to slip through the cracks, but I feel very positive about the work Cameron has put into this project, and because of that I am confident our mistakes will be manageable.  

 

This Week's Box: December 4th - December 10th

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CONTENTS:

  1. In the box - and how to store it

  2. This Week's Recipes

  3. Shopping List

  4. Link to Digital Copy of Newsletter

1. IN THE BOX (IN ORDER OF WHAT TO EAT FIRST):

*Items in Box for 2

Chard- Remove any bands, twist ties, etc. Most greens must be kept in an air‐tight container with a damp cloth to keep them from drying out. Kale, collard greens, and chard do well in a cup of water on the counter or fridge. Keeps 2-3 days.

*Garlic Chives- Store in the refrigerator, wrapped in plastic. Should last 3-5 days.

Spinach- Store in the bag, unwashed, in the crisper. Take out what you plan on using and wash as you go. Will last 3-5 days.

*Arugula- Wash and dry well. Wrap with a damp paper towel and store in a glass container in the fridge. Lasts up to 5 days.

*Bok Choy- Store in a plastic bag in the fridge up to one week. Don’t forget to use the ribs!

Cabbage- Wrap cabbage in plastic wrap and keep it chilled in the refrigerator. An alternative to plastic would be placing it in a tightly-locking container that limits air flow. Properly stored, cabbage should last about a week. 

Radishes- Store radishes in a plastic bag in the crisper of the refrigerator and they should keep for at least a week. If your radishes have leaves attached, it is best to remove them, as they tend to leach moisture from the root.

*Lettuce- Keep damp in an airtight container in the fridge. Keeps for one week.

Broccoli- Place in an open container in the fridge or wrap in a damp towel before placing in the fridge. Lasts 1-2 weeks. 

*Pomegranates- Keeps up to a month stored on a cool counter.

Apples- Apples last much longer if they are placed loosely in the bin of your refrigerator. Wrapping them in brown paper from grocery sacks will also help to keep in the moisture of the apple. Keep apples slightly apart from each other. Lasts up to 2 months.  

*Butternut Squash- Store in a cool, dark, well-ventilated place. Many growers say winter squash gets sweeter if they're stored for a week or so before eaten. Will last several weeks.

2. THIS WEEK'S RECIPES

Gratineed Crespelle With Spinach & Butternut Filling

Marinated Lentils With Crunchy Vegetables

Dark Leafy Greens

3. SHOPPING LIST FOR ALL RECIPES (ASSUMES YOU HAVE SALT AND PEPPER):

Shopping list for Gratineed Crespelle With Spinach & Butternut Filling:

3/4 cup + 2 TB Flour

2 3/4 cup Whole Milk

2 Eggs

2 TB Butter, for making the crespelle

Pinch of Nutmeg

2 1/2 TB Unsalted Butter

1/4 tsp Cayenne

3/4 cup Gruyere Cheese

Shopping list for Marinated Lentils With Crunchy Vegetables

1 large Onion, quartered through root end

2 Bay Leaves

1 1/2 cubs Black Beluga or French Green Lentils, rinsed, picked through

1/4 cup Olive Oil

1 tsp Coriander Seeds

1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds

3 TB Sherry Vinegar or Red Wine Vinegar

4 Scallions, thinly sliced

1 cup Parsley and or Mint Leaves

1 cup thinly sliced Celery Hearts and leaves

Shopping list for Dark Leafy Greens:

2 TB Olive Oil

2 oz Salt Pork or Slab Bacon

Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes

4. CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE NEWSLETTERS PAGE AT WWW.EATWELL.COM. CLICK ON THE DATE OF THE NEWSLETTER TO DOWNLOAD A PDF COPY OF THIS WEEK'S NEWSLETTER IN COLOR.

Marinated Lentils With Crunchy Vegetables

Recipe by Claire Saffitz from Bon Appetit

I would play with this recipe by switching out a few ingredients.  Since we do not have celery in the share this week, I would experiment using the bok choy, the stems are crunchy and the leaves are tender.  I might try blaching the bok choy very quickly, and mostly the stem end, holding it in the water with tongs for a minute before submerging the entire thing. A few florets of Broccoli that you just lightly cook so they remain crunchy, would be a great addition to this dish as well!

1 large Onion, quartered through root end

2 Bay Leaves

1 1/2 cubs Black Beluga or French Green Lentils, rinsed, picked through

Kosher Salt

1/4 cup Olive Oil

1 tsp Coriander Seeds

1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds

3 TB Sherry Vinegar or Red Wine Vinegar

Freshly ground Black Pepper

6 Radishes, trimmed, very thinly sliced

4 Scallions, thinly sliced

1 cup Parsley and or Mint Leaves

1 cup thinly sliced Celery Hearts and leaves

Cook onion, bay leaves, and lentil in a large saucepan of simmering salted water until lentils are tender but still firm, 15 to 20 minutes.  Drain; discard onion and by leaves and transfer lentils to a medium bowl.  Heat oil in a small skillet over medium.  Cook coriander seeds and cumin seeds, swirling skillet, until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add spice mixture and vinegar to lentil, season with salt and pepper, and toss to coat.  Just before serving, top lentils with radishes, scallions, herbs, and celery, season with salt and pepper.

Dark Leafy Greens

Recipe form Tartine All Day by Elizabeth Pruitt

Nancy, one of our wonderful CSA members sent this to me, so it is a CSA tried and true recipe. The recipe suggests serving this with a Lemon Garlic Dressing, rather than vinegar, which is typical of the Southern version of this style of dish. They also serve it along side poached eggs, or on ricotta toast. Hope y’all enjoy it!

1 lb Greens, you can add the turnip or radish tops into the option mix along with the chard and or spinach

2 TB Olive Oil

2 oz Salt Pork or Slab Bacon

Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes

Sea Salt 

Freshly ground Black Pepper

1/4 cup Water

Strip the leaves from the stems.  Rinse and dry the leaves and slice into wide ribbons.  Chop the tender stems.  Heat the oil in a medium pot over medium-high heat.  Add the salt pork or bacon and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, until crisp.  Add the red pepper flakes and the stem pieces, then pile the greens on top.  Season with salt and pepper, add the water. Cover the pot, reduce the heat to low, let simmer for about 5 minutes.  Remove the lid and check the greens and cooking for a few minutes, if needed, until tender. 

Gratineed Crespelle With Spinach & Butternut Filling

Recipe from Gather by Georgeann Brennan

The original recipe is made with spinach, mushrooms and a parmesan based sauce.  Trying to keep it to as many Eatwell ingredients as I could, I used butternut squash instead of mushrooms. I had loads of chard in the house, so I used that instead of spinach. I also had a bunch of grated gruyere leftover from Thanksgiving so I switched that for the Parmesan.

For the Crespelle:

3/4 cup Flour

1 cup Whole Milk

2 Eggs

Pinch of Salt

2 TB Butter, for making the crespelle

Pour the milk into a mixing bowl, and very slowly whisk in the flour being careful not to let lumps form.  Stir in the salt, and then the eggs whisking well until a thin batter forms.  In an  8” pan, non-stick usually works best, melt 1 tsp butter and heat over medium-high heat.  When it forams, pour  2 TB of batter, quickly tilting the pan from side to side to spread the batter evenly, creating a very thin layer.  Cook about 1 minute until the edges curl and a few bubbles form.  Carefully flip over and cook the other side until golden, about a  minute.

For the filling:

1 bag Spinach or 1 bunch Chard, wash well, leave whole

1/2 to 1 bunch Garlic Chives, finely chopped

1/2 Butternut Squash,peeled, roasted, cut into 1” cubes

Salt and Pepper, to taste

Pinch of Nutmeg

Bring a pot of water to boil.  Turn the heat off and put in the greens.  If you are using chard, put the stem side down first to give it a bit more time, then submerge the rest.  You will have to do this in batches, unless you are using a very large pot.  Only blanch until the greens turn bright.  Put into a large strainer to drain and cool.  If you feel you cooked them too long, plunge them into cold water then strain.  Once cool enough squeeze as much liquid out as you can, then chop.  Squeeze again.  Put the greens and the garlic chives into a large bowl, sprinkle on some salt and pepper and the nutmeg, and mix well.  Add the butternut squash and mix again.  Use your hands, they will make this job much easier.

For the Sauce:

2 1/2 TB Unsalted Butter

2 TB All-Purpose Flour

1 3/4 cups Whole Milk

1/2 tsp Salt

1/2 tsp Pepper

1/4 tsp Cayenne

Pinch of Nutmeg

3/4 cup Gruyere Cheese

In a heavy bottomed sauce pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat.  When it has melted, remove from the heat and whisk in the flour to make a roux, or paste.  Return the pan to the heat and slowly drizzle in the milk, whisking it in thoroughly to prevent anty lumping.  Add the salt, pepper and cayenne and reduce the heat to medium.  Continue to whisk from time to time, until the sauce has thickened.  Add the Gruyere to the sauce and mix.  Spoon about 1/2 cup of the sauce into the vegetable mix

Preheat the oven to 425 F.  Butter a gratin or baking dish.  Take a crespelle and lay it out in the baking dish and fill with about 1 TB of filling.  Roll carefully, then slide to the far side.  Repeat until you have used all of the crespelle.  Pour the remaining sauce over the crespelle and bake for 10 minutes.  Pull them out and grate over some Parmesan cheese, slide the dish under the broiler for 3 to 5 minutes, until the top is golden brown, crispy and delicious!

This Week's Box: November 27th- December 3rd

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CONTENTS:

  1. In the box - and how to store it

  2. This Week's Recipes

  3. Shopping List

  4. Link to Digital Copy of Newsletter

1. IN THE BOX (IN ORDER OF WHAT TO EAT FIRST):

*Items in Box for 2

Fennel- If used within a couple days, fennel can be left out on the counter, upright in a cup or bowl of water (like celery). If wanting to keep longer than a few days, place in the fridge in a closed container with a little water.  

Chard- Remove any bands, twist ties, etc. Most greens must be kept in an air‐tight container with a damp cloth to keep them from drying out. Kale, collard greens, and chard do well in a cup of water on the counter or fridge. Keeps 2-3 days.

*Spinach- Store in the bag, unwashed, in the crisper. Take out what you plan on using and wash as you go. Will last 3-5 days.

Radish- Store radishes in a plastic bag in the crisper of the refrigerator and they should keep for at least a week. If your radishes have leaves attached, it is best to remove them, as they tend to leach moisture from the root.

*Stir Fry Mix- These baby mixed greens can be stored by lining a storage container with paper towels, place the mixed greens on top, and cover with another layer of paper towels and lock the lid. Make sure there is plenty of space and the greens are not jam-packed in there. Will last up to one week.

*Cabbage- Wrap cabbage in plastic wrap and keep it chilled in the refrigerator. An alternative to plastic would be placing it in a tightly-locking container that limits air flow. Properly stored, cabbage should last about a week.  

Broccoli- Place in an open container in the fridge or wrap in a damp towel before placing in the fridge. Lasts 1-2 weeks. 

*Leeks- Leave in an open container in the crisper wrapped in a damp cloth or in a shallow cup of water on the counter (just so the very bottom of the stem has water).  Will last at least a week.

*Rosemary -To keep green: wrap in a damp paper towel and store in a plastic bag in the fridge. Lasts one week or more. To dry, leave bound around the stems and hang - last 2 weeks to a month.

Butternut Squash- Store in a cool, dark, well-ventilated place. Many growers say winter squash gets sweeter if they're stored for a week or so before eaten. Will last several weeks.

Raisins- Store in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight. Refrigeration is recommended in hot environments. Should last several weeks.

*Apples- Apples last much longer if they are placed loosely in the bin of your refrigerator. Wrapping them in brown paper from grocery sacks will also help to keep in the moisture of the apple. Keep apples slightly apart from each other. Lasts up to 2 months.  

 

2. THIS WEEK'S RECIPES

Creamy Apple Cider Vinaigrette

Fresh Broccoli & Radish Salad with Apples & Raisins

Bottom Of The Box Bibimbap

3. SHOPPING LIST FOR ALL RECIPES (ASSUMES YOU HAVE SALT AND PEPPER):

Shopping list for Creamy Apple Cider Vinaigrette

3 TB Little Apple Vinegar, or whatever Apple Cider Vinegar you have at home

1 clove Garlic

3 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4 TB Greek Yogurt

1 TB Dijon Mustard

1/2 tsp Salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground Pepper

Shopping list for Fresh Broccoli & Radish Salad with Apples & Raisins

1 batch Creamy Apple Cider Vinaigrette (recipe included)

Shopping list for Bottom Of The Box Bibimbap

1/4 cup Gochujang - Korean red pepper paste

1 TB Rice Vinegar

1 TB Toasted Sesame Oil

1 TB + 1 tsp toasted Sesame Seeds

2 Garlic cloves

2 cup White Rice

2 TB Sesame Oil

3 TB Olive Oil, divided

2 Carrots, cut into 3” matchsticks (or use butter squash from the box instead)

1 cup packed Pea Sprouts

4 Eggs

 

4. CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE NEWSLETTERS PAGE AT WWW.EATWELL.COM. CLICK ON THE DATE OF THE NEWSLETTER TO DOWNLOAD A PDF COPY OF THIS WEEK'S NEWSLETTER IN COLOR.

Bottom Of The Box Bibimbap

Recipe from The CSA Cookbook by Linda Ly

This is a classic Korean dish, rice bowl.  The beauty is you can use any combination of veg from the box, chard, spinach, cabbage, leeks, stir-fry mix.  Instead of carrots use butternut squash!

For the Sauce:

1/4 cup Gochujang - Korean red pepper paste

2 TB Hot Water

1 TB Rice Vinegar

1 TB Sesame Oil

1 TB Toasted Sesame Oil

1 TB toasted Sesame Seeds

2 Garlic cloves, minced (use that microplane)

For the Rice:

2 cup uncooked White Rice, rinsed

4 cups Water

For the Bibimbap:

8 cups packed Greens, use Stir Fry Mix, Spinach, Chard, Cabbage

1 TB Sesame Oil

1 tsp toasted Sesame Seeds

3 TB Olive Oil, divided

2 Zucchini (I would skip this one because they aren’t in season for us now), thinly sliced

2 Carrots, cut into 3” matchsticks (I would use butter squash from the box instead)

1 cup packed Pea Sprouts

4 Eggs

To make the sauce, combine all of its ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.  To make the rice, bring the rice and the water to a boil in a medium saucepan.  Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer until the water is absorbed and the rice is cooked through, about 25 minutes.  

Meanwhile, bring another medium saucepan of salted water to a boil.  Blanch the greens about 1 minute, then drain and thoroughly squeeze out all the liquid.  Gather the greens into a clump and coarsely chop.  Transfer to a large platter, then drizzle the sesame oil and scatter the sesame seeds on top.  

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add 1 TB of the olive oil.  Stir in the zucchini and cook until tender, about 3 minutes.  Transfer the zucchini to the same platter as the greens.  In the same skillet over medium-high heat, add 1 TB of the olive oil, stir in the carrots (or butternut squash), and cook for about 5 minutes until tender.  

Transfer the carrots to the platter.  Divide the rice among four bowls and arrange the greens, zucchini, carrots, and pea sprouts on top of the rice.  

Reheat the same skillet over medium-high heat and add the remaining 1 TB olive oil, swirling it around to coat the surface.  Crack the eggs into the skillet, making sure the whites don’t run into each other.  Cover and reduce the heat to low.  Cook until the whites are set and the edges start to brown, about 5 minutes.  Top each bowl with a fried egg and serve with a few spoonfuls of sauce to taste.

 

Fresh Broccoli & Radish Salad with Apples & Raisins

Inspiration from the Farmhouse Kitchen

1 batch Creamy Apple Cider Vinaigrette (recipe included)

Broccoli form this week’s share

1 or 2 Apples, cored and cut into bite sized chunks

Radishes, washed and sliced thin, use as many as you like

1 small Fennel bulb, thinly sliced, save the fronds

2-3 TB Raisins

Separate the broccoli into small florets.  Cut the hard part off the bottom of the stock and peel the rest of it, then cut into bite size pieces.  If you prefer your veg not completely raw, you can quickly blanch, do the stem chunks first, then add the florets, pop everything into ice water to stop the cooking, drain well.  If you like you can plump the raisins a bit by soaking them in hot water for a couple of minutes.  Trim the bottom off the small fennel bulb and shave on a box grater on the slicer, or best use a mandolin. You can do the same with the radishes.  

To assemble put the broccoli, raisins, and apple into a serving bow.  Spoon on a little Creamy Apple Cider Vinaigrette, and toss.  Taste, add more if you like, if you nailed it, then top with radish and fennel slices.

Creamy Apple Cider Vinaigrette

Inspiration from the Farmhouse Kitchen

We are now offering Little Apple Vinegar as an extra.  If you haven’t tried it, I highly recommend it.  Makes a truly delicious salad dressing.  And since we just spent several days of overeating a nice simple way to ease our digestion is drinking water with a splash of ACV in it, and that is when I appreciate Little Apple Farm’s ACV the most!  So if you don’t have a bottle, order one for your next delivery.

3 TB Little Apple Vinegar, or whatever Apple Cider Vinegar you have at home

1 clove Garlic, minced or grated on a microplane

3 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4 TB Greek Yogurt

1 TB Dijon Mustard

1/2 tsp Salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground Pepper

I put all the ingredients into a small mason jar, regular mouth.  Attache the base of your blender and let it rip on medium speed.  Taste, adjust seasoning.  I personally don’t like sweet salad dressing, but if you do, consider dropping the garlic, and add a little honey.

Carrots

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Ah, the delicious Eatwell carrot, fighting for its life in a bed overrun by weeds.  Nigel always said we have great difficulty growing carrot here, and from what we saw in the field, that is indeed the case.  However, Cameron and I were talking to some plant experts while wine tasting in Winters a couple of weeks ago, and they asked how deep were we planting the seeds?  Hmmm, good question. As it turns out our seeder is set to a depth of 1” and carrots are planted at 1/4”, basically you don’t even have to cover them. Could that be the problem?  Seems odd that Nigel would have missed that bit of information. I always assume he must have had a reason for every thing he did.  I suppose the next step is to ask Roberto, the man who actually sows the seeds. Maybe we will have more Eatwell carrots in our future!

Turnips

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Learning through observing is pretty fascinating. It makes you realize that one observation leads to a multitude of questions.  As an example, looking at this bed of turnips it is striking the full coverage of turnip and lack of weeds. Cameron and I both wondered why. Could it be due to the fact that they germinate so quickly, 5 to 10 days, and are ready for harvesting in 37 to 70 days, so they are growing faster than the weeds? Is it because of their rapid growth along with the fact that we direct seed these so the planting is denser?  Or maybe weeds don’t like turnips, not completely unreasonable, since there are plenty of silly people who don’t like turnips :). It will certainly be interesting to watch  what happens with the turnip patch.

We Got Some Baby Chicks

A new flock of 1,000 chicks arrived this week from Vega Farms in Davis. They hatch them early in the morning then drive them out to us. Baby chicks are just so darned cute!  Agustin does such a great job of getting the chick house ready, cleaning (LOTS of cleaning), putting up new corregate to keep the sections divided, getting all the heat lamps in, spreading out the bedding.  Everything is nice and comfy cozy in there for the arrival of the little ones. In six months or so they will begin laying their first eggs. We can all look forward to pullets come May or June!

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Liz Made It Happen

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The flowers Nigel planted as a Thank You/Thanksgiving gift for you all are blooming. Liz is here this morning picking to make sure you get them. So one last Happy Thanksgiving from Nigel. I know how much he loved his CSA members, really as much as he loved the farm. You made this farm his home, his community and his life. Because of you Eatwell is what it is, a sanctuary for lots and lots of wild life, a place that grows wonderful food that feeds lots and lots of people, a work place that can keep employees employed year round, a place for us all to come together to experience being on the land, and the place I call home. As much as my heart breaks every time I write about him and his love of this farm, I really want you all to know how important you were to him. Happy Thanksgiving. Love, Nigel

This Week's Box: November 20th - November 26th

CONTENTS:

  1. In the box - and how to store it

  2. This Week's Recipes

  3. Shopping List

  4. Link to Digital Copy of Newsletter

1. IN THE BOX (IN ORDER OF WHAT TO EAT FIRST):

*Items in Box for 2

*Fennel- If used within a couple days, fennel can be left out on the counter, upright in a cup or bowl of water (like celery). If wanting to keep longer than a few days, place in the fridge in a closed container with a little water.  

Chard- Remove any bands, twist ties, etc. Most greens must be kept in an air‐tight container with a damp cloth to keep them from drying out. Kale, collard greens, and chard do well in a cup of water on the counter or fridge. Keeps 2-3 days.

Spinach- Store in the bag, unwashed, in the crisper. Take out what you plan on using and wash as you go. Will last 3-5 days.

*Turnips- Remove the greens (store separately) same as radishes and beets, store them in an
open container with a moist cloth. Will last 3-5 days.

*Dill- Keeps well in your fridge. Should last up to 7 days. For best results put stems in a jar with clean water as a vase and cover with a plastic bag to keep protected culture.

Persimmons- Store at room temperature until ripe, then refrigerate in a plastic bag. Lasts several days once ripe.

*Broccoli- Place in an open container in the fridge or wrap in a damp towel before placing in the fridge. Lasts 1-2 weeks. 

Leeks- Leave in an open container in the crisper wrapped in a damp cloth or in a shallow cup of water on the counter (just so the very bottom of the stem has water).  Will last at least a week.

Celeriac- Cool and damp is best, so an outdoor, shady vegetable rack is good and the bottom of your fridge even better. Healthy celeriac should keep, unwrapped, for several weeks without any significant loss of quality. Even when cut in half, they will still keep for a week or more, though you may need to shave off a layer to refresh the surface.

Thyme- All fresh herbs should be washed before using. Rinse the whole bunch under cool running water and dry them well — whether you're after a sprig or a giant handful, it will be ready for you whenever you need it. Will last 2-3 weeks.

*Butternut Squash- Store in a cool, dark, well-ventilated place. Many growers say winter squash gets sweeter if they're stored for a week or so before eaten. Will last several weeks.

Apples- Apples last much longer if they are placed loosely in the bin of your refrigerator. Wrapping them in brown paper from grocery sacks will also help to keep in the moisture of the apple. Keep apples slightly apart from each other. Lasts up to 2 months.  

 

2. THIS WEEK'S RECIPES

Yogurt Dill Sauce

Swiss Chard Gratin

3. SHOPPING LIST FOR ALL RECIPES (ASSUMES YOU HAVE SALT AND PEPPER):

Shopping list for Yogurt Dill Sauce

1 1/2  cups Greek Yogurt

1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Shopping list for Swiss Chard Gratin

5 TB Unsalted Butter

1 cup fresh White Bread Crumbs

3 oz Gruyere cheese, grated (1 cup)

1 Garlic clove, halved lengthwise, and finely chopped (I now use the microplane for garlic!)

1/8 tsp freshly grated Nutmeg

1 cup Chicken Broth

1/2 cup Heavy Cream

1 TB All-Purpose Flour

1 medium Onion, finely chopped

4. CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE NEWSLETTERS PAGE AT WWW.EATWELL.COM. CLICK ON THE DATE OF THE NEWSLETTER TO DOWNLOAD A PDF COPY OF THIS WEEK'S NEWSLETTER IN COLOR.

Yogurt Dill Sauce

Inspiration from the Farmhouse Kitchen

On Sunday we had visitors from the SF restaurant, Homage, for a tour of the farm and an early light supper.  I made a simple soup featuring our chard, chicken stock and some of my San Marzano Tomato Sauce. Along side we enjoyed some roasted Eatwell Butternut and with lots of fresh Dill I made a simple yogurt sauce.

1 1/2  cups Greek Yogurt

1/2 bunch Dill, stocks removed, finely chopped

1/4 cup hot Water

1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper, to taste,  I used Eatwell Rosemary Salt

*You could also add just a tiny bit of finely chopped Garlic, a small clove or half clove.  When I want finely chopped garlic I grate it on my microplane.

Mix the yogurt, dill, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper.  Taste a bit, then add a small amount of hot water and mix well.  Taste again.  I found the hot water brought out the flavors quite a bit.  Depending on how thick you want your sauce/dip add a bit more hot water or even a little more olive oil.  This sauce was great on roasted butternut, you could season it up some or use it as a dip with raw vegetables.

 

Swiss Chard Gratin

Recipe from Gourmet October 2000, shared on Eatweller’s Slack by Kristina

 

Every year for Thanksgiving I make Collard Green Gratin.  Kristina told me how much she loves this recipe, so I think this year I will give it a try!

5 TB Unsalted Butter

1 cup fresh White Bread Crumbs

3 oz Gruyere cheese, grated (1 cup)

1 Garlic clove, halved lengthwise, and finely chopped (I now use the microplane for garlic!)

1 TB finely chopped mixed fresh Herbs

1/8 tsp freshly grated Nutmeg

1 cup Chicken Broth

1/2 cup Heavy Cream

1 TB All-Purpose Flour

Salt and Pepper

1 medium Onion, finely chopped

3 lb Swiss Chard, leaves and stems separated and both cut into 1” pieces

1 lb Spinach, coarse stems discarded (I only chop off the very bottom), leaves coarsely chopped

 

Melt 2 Tb butter and toss with bread crumbs, cheese, garlic, herbs, half of nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste, in a bowl.  Boil broth in a small saucepan until reduced by half.  Add cream and keep warm.  Melt 1 TB butter in a small heavy saucepan over moderate heat and stir in flour.  Cook roux, whisking, 1 minute, then whisk in broth mixture and boil, whisking, 1 minute.  Season sauce with salt and pepper.  Preheat oven to 400 F.  Cook onion in remaining 2 TB butter in a wide 8 quart heavy pot over moderately low heat, stirring, until softened.  Add chard stems, remaining nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste and cook, stirring, until vegetables are tender but not browned, about 8 minutes.  Increase heat to moderately high and add chard leaves and spinach by large handfuls, stirring, until all greens are wilted.  Season with salt and pepper.  Transfer vegetables to a colander to drain well and press out liquid with back of a large spoon.  Toss vegetable with cream sauce and transfer to a buttered 12” oval gratin or 2 quart shallow baking dish, spreading evenly.  Top vegetables with bread crumbs and bake in middle of oven until bubbling and topping is golden, about 20 minutes.

Cook’s notes: Gratin may be prepared, without baking, 4 hours ahead and chilled, covered.  Bring to room temp before baking. Be sure to drain as much liquid as possible from vegetables so gratin isn’t wet.

Lilacs In November

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Cameron, Liz and I were heading back in from a farm walk on Friday.  Going back to the house we took the road on the western side of the farm.  All of a sudden Liz cries out “Look, Lilacs!”.  Seriously?  It’s November, is that normal?  Only the western end of the row has flowers, but they are beautiful and fragrant.  Lilacs were one of Nigel’s favorite things on the farm, so these   feel like a little gift from him, on a gray, cloudy day.

Stir Fry Mix

Have you ever wondered how that bag of Stir Fry Mix comes together?  Well here is a field that shows you exactly how some of it is grown.  Planting beds with rows of different greens saves the guys time from having to go to many different fields. To the mix they add some young chard and kale greens. 

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