Some Old Things and Some New Things

 Kohlrabi

Kohlrabi

Up until a couple of years ago we grew Kohlrabi.  One of the problems we had was size. It grew quite large rather quickly.  It is also known as the German Turnip, although it is not related to turnips. It is in the brassica family, and is a cultivar of wild cabbage. I love kohlrabi and I grew up eating it, as it was a common vegetable in Germany. My mother would buy it whenever she found it, and always made it the way she made cauliflower, in a delicious béchamel sauce.

Diet is like fashion, how people eat can change fairly dramatically.  In today’s world, a lot of people are gluten free, and some of us are just looking for ways to reduce our carb intake and get more fresh veg into our diets.  Kohlrabi is one of the vegetables people use for making “noodles”.  If you compare 140 gm of spaghetti (which is 1 cup) to 140 gm of Kohlrabi you are looking at 43 gm of carbs for pasta and just under 9 gm for Kohlrabi. 

I’m not really trying to sell you all on the virtues of Kohlrabi, but I realize growing vegetables is no longer as straight forward as it used to be.  There are many things we now need to consider.  The truth is I am looking at trends and don’t honestly know how the majority of our members eat.  But I would guess having ways to incorporate more fresh vegetables by and occasionally replacing it for dried pasta might be of interest to many of you. 


 Spigarello

Spigarello

As for the new thing; I met a farmer from the East coast a couple of years ago at the Market one Saturday. He asked me if we grew Spigarello, which I had never heard of, so obviously the answer was no. He was touting all it’s virtues, delicious, easy to grow, great yields, his customers were going crazy for it, and no one was growing it. Naturally I told Nigel about it but with life as it was for him the last couple of years, we never got around to trying it out. A member reminded me of it, when she posted a recipe on our Slack group (do you all know about our Slack group?  If you aren’t on there, email the office for the link).  Another member gave it a thumbs up too.

So what is Spigarello? Apparently it is the parent to broccoli rabe, and native to southern Italy. It is long stemmed, with curly leaves and tastes much like broccoli.  It doesn’t produce florets, but the flowers are edible.  You use it like kale or other greens, raw in salads or cooked. It grows to full maturity in 45 days, but we can begin harvesting baby leaves at only 21.  I am hoping to get seed ordered this week and get it into the ground as soon as possible.  It is pretty tricky planting it direct, rather than as transplants.  If we have really hot Indian summer weather it won’t be happy. But, as Nigel said, farming is a gamble, so I am going to give it a try. If it grows well and quickly from seed, it could be a nice addition.

This Week's Box September 26th -27th, 2018

 Transitional box this week. Fall veggies starting to make their way in!

Transitional box this week. Fall veggies starting to make their way in!

CONTENTS:

  1. In the box - and how to store it

  2. This Week's Recipes

  3. Shopping List

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

*Items in Box for 2

*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.

*Lunchbox peppers- Only wash them right before you plan on eating them as moisture decreases storage time. Store in a cool room to use in a couple of days, place in the crisper if longer storage is needed. Lasts up to one week.

OR

*Eggplant- Does fine left out in a cool room. Don't wash it, eggplant doesn't like any extra moisture around its leaves. For longer storage - place loose, in the crisper. Keeps 5-7 days.

*Grapes- Store, unwashed, in your refrigerator's fruit drawer. They last up to a week. 

*Parsley- Place in a glass with an inch of water in the fridge. Change water often. Can also be stored in a closed container in the fridge. Lasts up to one week.

OR

*ChardRemove 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.*CucumberCucumbers can be wrapped in a moist towel in the fridge. If you’re planning on eating them within a day or two after buying them they should be fine left out in a cool room. Lasts up to a week in the fridge.

Tomatoes- Depending on ripeness, tomatoes can stay for up to two weeks on the counter. To hasten ripeness, place in a paper bag with an apple.

*Cherry Tomatoes- Do not refrigerate until they are fully ripe. Allow them to ripen at room temperature. This will result in more flavorful, juicy tomatoes. Once fully ripe, place in a plastic bag and refrigerate. Will keep several days once ripe.*Onions- Store in a cool dry place out of the light. Lasts 2-3 months.

*Spaghetti Squash- Store squash in a cool, dry place up to 3 months. Refrigeration will make the squash spoil quickly.

*Sweet PotatoesStore in a cool, dark, well‐ventilated place. Never refrigerate ‐ sweet potatoes don't like the cold. Lasts up to 3 weeks if stored properly.

Radishes- Remove the greens (store separately) so they don't draw out excess moisture from the roots. Place them in an open container in the fridge with a wet towel placed on top. Lasts up to one week. 

Garlic ChivesStore in the refrigerator, wrapped in plastic. Should last 3-5 days.

Onion- Store in a cool dry place out of the light. Lasts 2-3 months.

2. THIS WEEK'S RECIPES

Waldorf Salad

Chili Sweet Potato Cubes

Simple Greek Yogurt Sauce

Chicken with Eggplant and Chard

Stuffed Spaghetti Squash with Chickpeas & Garlicky Arugula Cream

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

Shopping list for Stuffed Spaghetti Squash with Chickpeas & Garlicky Arugula Cream

1 TB Olive Oil, divided

2 TB Pine Nuts

1/3 cup Raw Cashew Butter

2 cloves of Garlic, peeled

1/2 tsp Lemon Zest

2 TB fresh Lemon Juice, divided

1/2 tsp Tamari

1 medium Shallot, small dice about 1/2 cup (If you don’t want to run out for Shallots, substitute onion from the share, just use a little less, maybe 1/3 cup)

1 1/2 cups cooked Chickpeas

Shopping list for Chicken with Eggplant and Chard

6 to 8 TB Sesame or Olive Oil

2 cloves Garlic, finely chopped

1 whole Chicken, 4 to 5 lbs, but into 8 pieces

1 tsp ground Allspice

1/2 tsp Turmeric

1 1/2 cups Chicken Stock or Water

1 dried Lime (optional, available at Middle Eastern Groceries)

Juice of 1 Lemon

Shopping list for Chili Sweet Potato Cubes

2 TB Olive Oil

1 tsp Chili Powder

Shopping list for Simple Greek Yogurt Sauce

1 cup Greek Yogurt

Juice & Zest from 1/2 Lemon

1 to 2 TB Olive Oil, depending on how creamy you want it.

Shopping list for Waldorf Salad

6 TB Mayo

1 TB Lemon Juice

1 cup Celery, thinly sliced OR use thinly sliced Radishes from this week’s share

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Waldorf Salad

Recipe from Simply Recipes Serves 4

I would use homemade Mayo, made from our eggs and probably do half and half with yogurt.  You can also use all Yogurt, but they suggest omitting the lemon juice and adding a tiny bit of honey, if you choose to make it that way. Since we don’t have celery yet, but we do have radishes, I am subbing there as well.

6 TB Mayo

1 TB Lemon Juice

1/2 tsp Salt

Pinch of freshly ground Black Pepper

2 Apples, cored and chopped

1 cup Grapes, sliced in half

1 cup Celery, thinly sliced OR use thinly sliced Radishes from this week’s share

Simple Greek Yogurt Herb Sauce

1 cup Greek Yogurt

Juice & Zest from 1/2 Lemon

1 to 2 TB Olive Oil, depending on how creamy you want it.

Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper, to taste

1/2 bunch Garlic Chives

1/2 bunch Parsley (and some basil if you still have some!)

Put everything into your blender and let it run until smooth.  Turn it off to push things down off the sides and let it run again.  If you have a regular blender, use a regular mouth mason jar, put the blender base on it and make your sauce in it.

Chili Sweet Potato Cubes

I made this for the breakfast this morning and it was so tasty and easy.  This makes enough for 2 to 3 people, depending on what else you are eating.  I think it would be a nice side dish to the Spaghetti Squash and Chickpeas.

2 cups Sweet Potato, peeled and chopped to about 1” cubes

2 TB Olive Oil

1/2 cup Water

1 tsp Chili Powder

Salt and Pepper to taste

In a heavy skillet, heat oil on medium to medium-high, then add cubed Sweet Potatoes.  Fry for about 3 minutes.  Season with chili powder and salt and pepper, mix well.  Have a lid ready, add water and cover.  Cook for about 3 minutes, then remove the lid and cook until water has evaporated and the sweet potato cubes are nice and tender.

Chicken With Eggplant and Chard

Recipe from NYT Cooking by Joan Nathan

6 to 8 TB Sesame or Olive Oil

2 lbs Eggplant

Sea Salt, to taste

1 Onion, chopped

2 cloves Garlic, finely chopped

1 whole Chicken, 4 to 5 lbs, but into 8 pieces

1 tsp ground Allspice

1/2 tsp Turmeric

1 1/2 cups Chicken Stock or Water

1 dried Lime (optional, available at Middle Eastern Groceries)

1 bunch Chard, about 1 lb, cleaned, trimmed and roughly chopped into 1 to 2” pieces

Juice of 1 Lemon

Heat oven to 375 F. And brush a baking sheet, liberally with 3 TB oil.  Slice tops and bottoms of the eggplant, then slice into 1/2” thick rounds and arrange on a single layer on baking sheet.  Brush rounds generously with some of the oil, sprinkle with a little salt, then bake for 20 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through.  Let cool.  Meanwhile, in a large, heavy bottomed pot with a tight fitting lid, warm 2 TB oil over medium-high heat.  Sauce onions and garlic until onions are soft and beginning to brown, reducing the heat as needed to avoid burning, about 15 minutes.  Remove to a plate.  Sprinkle chicken with salt, half the allspice and half the turmeric.  Add chicken to pot in a single layer, working in batches if necessary, and brown on all sides, adding oil if needed and removing chicken when it’s browned.  Arrange eggplant slices on the bottom of the pot and cover with the onion and garlic.  Add more salt, the remaining allspice and the remaining turmeric, then top with chicken, chicken stock or water and dried lime, if using.  Bring to a simmer, then lower heat to medium-low and cover the pot.  Cook for 30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through, then remove from that and let cool before refrigerating overnight.  The next day, skim off and discard the layer of fat on the top of the stew.  Add the chard to the pot and bring to a boil.  Cover tightly, reduce heat, and simmer slowly for about 15 minutes, or until chicken is heated through.  Fish out the lime, if using, and discard.  Arrange chicken on a platter surround by vegetables, serving sauce in a separate bowl. Squeeze lemon juice over everything and serve.

Stuffed Spaghetti Squash with Chickpeas & Garlicky Arugula Cream

Recipe from The First Mess by Laura Wright

This is one of the recipes shared on our Slack Group by CSA member Rose, so it comes member tested & recommended!


1 Spaghetti Squash (about 2 to 3 lb)

1 TB Olive Oil, divided

Sea Salt & freshly ground Black Pepper, to taste

2 TB Pine Nuts

1/3 cup Raw Cashew Butter

1/2 cup filtered Water

2 cloves of Garlic, peeled

1/2 tsp Lemon Zest

2 TB fresh Lemon Juice, divided

1/2 tsp Tamari

1 medium Shallot, small dice about 1/2 cup (If you don’t want to run out for Shallots, substitute onion from the share, just use a little less, maybe 1/3 cup)

1 1/2 cups cooked Chickpeas

Preheat oven to 400 F. Cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Place the halves face-up on a baking sheet and drizzle with 1 1/2 tsp of the olive oil. Season the squash with salt and pepper and slide the sheet into the oven. Roast the squash until tender strands start to pull away, about 45 minutes. Remove the seeds from the squash and set aside. While the squash is roasting, toast the pine nuts in a medium sauce pan over medium heat.  Once pine nuts are golden brown, remove and set aside.  Make the arugula cream: In an upright blender combine cashew butter, water, garlic, lemon zest, 1 TB of lemon juice, Tamara, arugula, salt and pepper.  Blend this mixture on high for about 45 seconds, or until totally smooth and fluid.  Check the cream for seasoning and adjust if necessary. Transfer the cream to a sealable container and keep in the fridge until ready to use. Return the medium sauce pan with the remaining 1 1/2 tsp of olive oil to the stove over medium heat.  Add shallots to the pan and cook, stirring often, until very soft, about 4 minutes.  Add the chickpeas to the pan and season with salt and pepper.  Once the chickpeas are warmed through, stir in the remaining tablespoon of lemon juice.  To serve, place warm squash halves on plates and gently pull out some strands of “spaghetti” to make a pocket of sorts. Divide chickpea mixture between squash halves.  Drizzle garlicky arugula cream over and garnish with toasted pine nuts and extra arugula. *If you want a nut-free version, I'd replace the cashew butter in the sauce with tahini and add maple syrup or other sweetener. You can also use any toasted seed instead.

This Week's Box: September 10th - September 16th

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CONTENTS:

  1. In the box - and how to store it

  2. This Week's Recipes

  3. Shopping List

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

*Items in Box for 2

*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.

Zucchini- Does fine for a few days if left out on a cool counter, even after cut. Wrap in a cloth and refrigerate for longer storage. Do not wash until ready to eat. Lasts 4-5 days. 

*Lunchbox peppers- Only wash them right before you plan on eating them as moisture decreases storage time. Store in a cool room to use in a couple of days, place in the crisper if longer storage is needed. Lasts up to one week.

*Basil- Trim the ends and place basil in a glass containing about 1 inch of water; then cover with a loose-fitting plastic bag and leave at room temp. Replace the water whenever it gets cloudy. Should keep for about a week.

*Eggplant- Does fine left out in a cool room. Don't wash it, eggplant doesn't like any extra moisture around its leaves. For longer storage - place loose, in the crisper. Keeps 5-7 days.

Grapes- Store, unwashed, in your refrigerator's fruit drawer. They last up to a week. 

Parsley- Place in a glass with an inch of water in the fridge. Change water often. Can also be stored in a closed container in the fridge. Lasts up to one week.

*CucumberCucumbers can be wrapped in a moist towel in the fridge. If you’re planning on eating them within a day or two after buying them they should be fine left out in a cool room. Lasts up to a week in the fridge.

*Tomatoes- Depending on ripeness, tomatoes can stay for up to two weeks on the counter. To hasten ripeness, place in a paper bag with an apple.

*Onions- Store in a cool dry place out of the light. Lasts 2-3 months.

Spaghetti Squash- Store squash in a cool, dry place up to 3 months. Refrigeration will make the squash spoil quickly.

Potatoes- Store in a cool, dry, dark place. Should keep for a week or more easily. If you want to store them for longer, say 2 or 3 months, keep them between 45-55 degrees, again in a dry place out of the light.

2. THIS WEEK'S RECIPES

Eggplant Parm

Chicken -Not Picatta- With Zucchini

Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

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

Shopping list for Eggplant Parm

5 TB Butter

Flour for dredging

2 Eggs, well beaten

About 2 cups Breadcrumbs

Grated Parmesan

Grated Mozzarella

Oil for frying

Shopping list for Chicken -Not Picatta- With Zucchini

1 Boneless, skinless Chicken Breast

Flour for dredging

2 TB Olive Oil

2 TB Butter

4 cloves Garlic, minced

Zest and Juice from 1 Lemon

Shopping list for Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

A good Olive Oil

Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Recipe by Ina Garten

Her recipe is made with 4 pints and serves 8, so this version is only enough for 2.

1 Pint Cherry Tomatoes

Good Olive Oil

Kosher Salt

Freshly ground Black Pepper

5 fresh Basil leaves, chopped or julienned

Sea Salt

Preheat the oven to 400 F.  Toss the tomatoes lightly with olive oil on a sheet pan.  Spread them out into one layer and sprinkle generously with kosher salt and pepper.  Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, until the tomatoes are soft.  Transfer the tomatoes to a serving platter and sprinkle with basil leaves and sea salt.  Serve over the Spaghetti Squash.

Chicken -Not Picatta- With Zucchini

I didn’t have any capers, or chicken stock thawed or white wine so I did this and it was perfect with the Eggplant Parmesan!


1 Boneless, skinless Chicken Breast

Flour for dredging

2 TB Olive Oil

2 TB Butter

Salt & Pepper

Zucchini, as much as you want to cook, thinly sliced, maybe quartered if the Zuke is large

4 cloves Garlic, minced

Basil and Parsley, finely chopped

Zest and Juice from 1 Lemon


More butter if you want to make a little lemon sauce, about another 2 TB, cut into little chunks

Thinly slice chicken breast.  Heat Olive Oil and butter in a heavy skillet.  Dredge the chicken in flour, salt and pepper.  Add to the pan once the oil/butter mixture is hot but not browning.  Cook until golden then flip and cook the other side.  Remove from the pan and put on a serving dish.  Throw in the minced garlic, give it a quick whirl around the pan, then add the zucchini.  Cook until the zucchini is done to your liking.  Put the zucchini onto of the chicken, trying to keep the oil in the pan.  Set the heat to medium, and add the lemon juice and zest to the pan, then add to the butter.  Whisk while it is melting, then pour over chicken and zucchini.  Top with basil and parsley and serve.

Eggplant Parm

Farmhouse Recipe

Thursday night I had a serious craving for Eggplant Parmesan and Chicken Picatta, so I closed my computer, poured myself a glass of wine and got into the Zen of dinner.  It was soooooo good I made it again Friday night, have been enjoying the leftovers and honestly I could easily make it again and keep going.  I don’t normally like leftovers, or eating the same thing twice in a week, but this harkened back to my childhood and old style Italian restaurants when the sauce tasted like someone actually cooked it and it didn’t come out of can.  I honestly can’t imagine how an eggplant hater wouldn’t enjoy this dish, so if you are an eggplant hater maybe you might consider giving it a try.  Of course the real secret here is making your own sauce from the tomatoes in the share, but hopefully most of you are already doing that.  If you aren’t try Marcella Hazan’s recipe, it is THE BEST fresh sauce ever.  I am including a version from Food52 so you have it.


2 lb Tomatoes

5 TB Butter

1 medium Onion, peeled and cut in half not chopped or diced

Salt to taste **For my Eggplant Parm I used Eatwell Rosemary Salt


First wash your tomatoes, cut the stem end off and quickly blanch in boiling water.  Allow to cool.  When you can handle them remove the skin.  You can coarsely chop or cut in half.  Put the tomatoes into a heavy bottom sauce pan, add the butter, onion and salt and cook uncovered at a very slow, but steady simmer for about 45 minutes, or until it is thickened to your liking and the fat floats free from the tomato.  Stir from time to time, mashing up any large pieces of tomato with the back of a wooden spoon.  Taste and correct for salt.  This can cook on the stove while you are prepping the eggplant.

For the Eggplant:

1 Eggplant, sliced to about 1 1/2” thickness

Flour for dredging

2 Eggs, well beaten

About 2 cups Breadcrumbs

Salt and Pepper

Grated Parmesan

Grated Mozzarella

Basil and Parsely, finely chopped

Oil for frying


Preheat oven to 375 F. Heat a large heavy skillet with a good amount of oil, at least 1/2” deep, to medium high.  Coat both sides of the eggplant in the flour, then dip into the egg.  I added about 3 TB of Parmesan to the breadcrumbs, along with some salt and pepper, and mixed it well.  After the egg dip, coat the eggplant with the breadcrumbs.  Carefully put the eggplant in the hot oil.  I use tongs and try not to splatter and burn myself too many times. Fill your pan, but don’t over crowd, you want working room.  Once golden brown, gently turn over and cook the other side.  You don’t want it to brown too quickly because the eggplant needs time to cook through, so if you find your eggplant is browning really fast lower your temp a bit.  I used a smaller baking dish which is a little deeper, it is about a 9 X 11.  I spooned in enough sauce to cover the bottom, then sprinkled on a little bit of our Rosemary Salt (I hadn’t salted my sauce).  Then I put down one layer of fried eggplant, sprinkled over Paremesan and Mozzarella.  Repeat it all with a seance layer of everything, with a final light topping of sauce. Pop it into the oven and bake until bubbling, about 30 minutes.  If you want you can add another layer of Mozzarella and Parmesan, turn the oven off and let it sit in there until the cheese melts.  When serving sprinkle on a little chopped Basil and Parsley.

This Week's Box September 3rd-9th

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CONTENTS:

  1. In the box - and how to store it

  2. This Week's Recipes

  3. Shopping List

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

*Items in Box for 2

*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.

*Chives- Wrap in a damp paper towel and store in a plastic bag in the fridge. Keeps about 1 week.

*Zucchini- Does fine for a few days if left out on a cool counter, even after cut. Wrap in a cloth and refrigerate for longer storage. Do not wash until ready to eat. Lasts 4-5 days. 

Basil- Trim the ends and place basil in a glass containing about 1 inch of water; then cover with a loose-fitting plastic bag and leave at room temp. Replace the water whenever it gets cloudy. Should keep for about a week.

Eggplant- Does fine left out in a cool room. Don't wash it, eggplant doesn't like any extra moisture around its leaves. For longer storage - place loose, in the crisper. Keeps 5-7 days.

Grapes- Store, unwashed, in your refrigerator's fruit drawer. They last up to a week. 

*Parsley- Place in a glass with an inch of water in the fridge. Change water often. Can also be stored in a closed container in the fridge. Lasts up to one week.

CucumberCucumbers can be wrapped in a moist towel in the fridge. If you’re planning on eating them within a day or two after buying them they should be fine left out in a cool room. Lasts up to a week in the fridge.

*Tomatoes- Depending on ripeness, tomatoes can stay for up to two weeks on the counter. To hasten ripeness, place in a paper bag with an apple.

Onions- Store in a cool dry place out of the light. Lasts 2-3 months.

*Potatoes- Store in a cool, dry, dark place. Should keep for a week or more easily. If you want to store them for longer, say 2 or 3 months, keep them between 45-55 degrees, again in a dry place out of the light.

2. THIS WEEK'S RECIPES

Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan & Pine Nut

Chickpea, Eggplant, and Tomato Tarts

Chicken, Eggplant, Onion and Cherry Tomato Skewers with Chimichurri Sauce

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

Shopping list for Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan & Pine Nut

1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 TB fresh Lemon Juice

1/4 tsp dried crushed Red Pepper

1/4 cup Pine Nuts, toasted

Small wedge of Parmesan cheese

Shopping list for Chickpea, Eggplant, and Tomato Tarts

1/2 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

1 Bay Leaf

3 Garlic cloves, minced

1/2 tsp Paprika

1/8 tsp ground Cumin

1 15 oz can of Chickpeas, rinsed and drained

6 Phyllo sheets 

Shopping list for Chicken, Eggplant, Onion and Cherry Tomato Skewers with Chimichurri Sauce

1 lb of Chicken meat, I used a combo of thigh and breast meat, cut into small chunks

1/2 cup Cilantro, same as with the Parsley

1 tsp dried Oregano

3 cloves Garlic

2 Green Onions, chopped

1/2 Serrano Pepper, seeds and veins removed

2 TB fresh Lemon Juice

1/2 cup Olive Oil

 

 

Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan & Pine Nuts

Shaved Zucchini Salad with Parmesan & Pine Nuts

Recipe by Ian Knauer Bon Appetit August 2010 About 6 Servings

Zucchini or Cucumber?  No matter which one you have, you can make a very simple, light salad with either.  Here is a recipe that uses the zuke, but you could use the cuke just as well!

1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 TB fresh Lemon Juice

1 tsp coarse Salt

1/2 tsp freshly ground Black Pepper

1/4 tsp dried crushed Red Pepper

2 lb medium Zucchini, trimmed

1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh Basil

1/4 cup Pine Nuts, toasted

Small wedge of Parmesan cheese

Whisk oil, lemon juice, 1 tsp coarse salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper, and crushed red pepper in small bowl to blend.  Set dressing aside.  Using vegetable peeler or V-slicer and working from top to bottom of each zucchini, slice zucchini into ribbons (about 1/16” thick).  Place ribbon in a large bowl.  Add basil and nuts, then dressing; toss to coat.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Using vegetable peeler, shave strips from Parmesan wedge over salad.

 

Chickpea, Eggplant, and Tomato Tarts

Chickpea, Eggplant, and Tomato Tarts

Recipe from Gourmet November 2005 Serves 4 as a main or 8 to 10 as a side

This looks like a nice meatless meal option, the eggplant and chickpeas make it a more substantial dish.

1 lb Eggplant

1 3/4 tsp Salt

1/2 cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

1 medium Onion, halved lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/2” thick slices

1 Bay Leaf

3 Garlic cloves, minced

1 lb Stewed Tomatoes, drained, reserving juice and coarsely chop

1/2 tsp Paprika

1/8 tsp ground Cumin

1 15 oz can of Chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 1/2 tsp Black Pepper

1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh Parsley

6 Phyllo sheets 

Peel eggplant and cut into 1/2” cubes.  Top with 1 tsp salt in a large bowl and let stand 15 minutes, then rinse in a colander under cold water and squeeze out excess water. **I no longer sweat my eggplant with salt, I find with ours it is fresh and I don’t find it makes enough of a difference to make it worthwhile.  Heat 2 TB oil in a 12” heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then cook onion with bay leaf, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 5 minutes.  Add 1 TB oil, eggplant, and garlic and cook, stirring, until eggplant is tender, 8 to 10 minutes.  Add tomatoes (without juice), paprika, and cumin and cook, stirring, 3 minutes.  Add reserved tomato juice, chickpeas. 1/2 tsp pepper, and remaining 3/4 tsp salt and simmer, stirring occasionally, until filling is thickened and most of the liquid is evaporated, a bout 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in parsley, then discard bay leaf.  To make the tarts, put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 425 F.  Line a large baking sheet with foil.  Unroll phyllo and cover stack with plastic wrap and a dampened kitchen towel.  Keeping remaining phyllo covered, lightly brush 1 phyllo sheet with some of the remaining oil and top with 2 more sheets, brushing each with oil.  Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp pepper, then cut stack in half crosswise with a sharp knife.  Spoon 1 cup filling into center of each half.  Crumple edges of phyllo and shape into a crescent, leaving filling exposed, then transfer to baking sheet using a spatula.  Make 2 more tarts in same manner, arranging about 1/2” apart on baking sheet.  Bake, rotating baking sheet 180 degrees after 10minutes, until edges of tarts are golden, 15 to 20 minutes total.  Serve immediately.  Notes” Filling, without parsley can be made 1 dat ahead, chilled and covered.  Stir in parsley before using.  Tarts can be baked 6 hours ahead and kept, uncovered, at room temp.

Roasted Tomato Salsa

Recipe from Kevin Is Cooking

2 lb Romas

2 Jalapeno Peppers - I used our Serranos, but used only 1 and took the veins and seeds out

1 large Onion

8 cloves Garlic - I used about 1/2 that much

1 Chipotle Pepper in Adobo Sauce - I made several batches and added more so it probably worked out to 1 1/2 Chipotle peppers

1 Lime

1 tsp Salt

Slice tomatoes and peppers lengthwise.  Remove skin from onion, halve and slice into 1/2” pieces.  Place tomatoes, jalapeños skin side up on a baking sheet with onion and garlic.  Place baking tray under broil and cook for 6-8 minutes until charred.  Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.  Ina blender or food process, blend with chipotle pepper until smooth.  Season with lime juice and salt to taste.  Chill cover until read to serve.

Chicken, Eggplant, Onion and Cherry Tomato Skewers with Chimichurri Sauce

This past weekend I had the honor of cooking a buffet meal for the birthday party for Paolo,  one of our CSA members.  He and his wife Louise, and their two daughters Francesca and Julianna are our Albany hosts.  It was such a treat to work on putting together this menu, which of course highlighted so much growing on the farm at the moment.  It was a simple spread which allowed the vegetables to take center stage and shine.  The evening  reaffirmed my belief that food from stores just never tastes this good.  Sure it might often look better, but the flavor is seldom equal.  And once again I was reminded that simple food, made with fresh and flavorful ingredients, doesn’t need much fussing.  For this meal I made Chimichurri Sauce and a Roasted Tomato Salsa, such great ways to take advantage of box ingredients (the recipes are below). 

 The spread!  Featuring our summer box contents

The spread!  Featuring our summer box contents

Chicken, Eggplant, Onion and Cherry Tomato Skewers

Recipe from the Farmhouse Kitchen

One of the two meat dishes I made were these skewers marinated in the Chimichurri Sauce.    The nice thing with kabobs/skewers is you can really reduce the amount of meat because visually you are not grabbing a slice or hunk of meat.  It is also a fun way to eat that kids tend to enjoy.  If you don’t have a grill, you can bake these in a hot oven at 450 for about 10 minutes, then turn and bake another 10 to 15.  It requires less time if the chicken pieces are smaller.   If you are doing this in the oven take advantage of having the heated and roast some potatoes to go with it!  Or you could cube up some potato and add them to to the skewers.

1 lb of Chicken meat, I used a combo of thigh and breast meat, cut into small chunks

Cherry Tomatoes

Eggplant, cubed about 1” 

1 Onion, cut quartered then cut into 2-3” chunks

Cut chicken and marinate in enough Chimichurri sauce to coat well (recipe to follow).  Let marinate over night or at least for several hours.  If using wooden skewers, soak in water for at least 30 minutes.  To assemble the skewers I first put on one chunk of eggplant and slide it all the way down leaving a good 2” of space for grabbing room.  Then I put on a hunk of chicken, followed by some onion pieces, followed by more chicken, followed by Cherry Tomato, then a bit more chicken and topped with eggplant.  I used the eggplant to cap top and bottom of the skewers.  I packed the chicken on pretty tight, I would recommend not doing that, as I found it was hard to determine if the meat was cooked well through.  Next time I will give the meat just a little bit more space.

Chimichurri Sauce

I read a lot of Chimichurri recipes and kind of put my own version together taking a little from all of them.

1/2 cup Parsley, finely chopped OR if you have a food processor, just rough chop

1/2 cup Cilantro, same as with the Parsley

1 tsp dried Oregano

2 TB Basil, rough chopped

3 cloves Garlic

2 Green Onions, chopped

1/2 Serrano Pepper, seeds and veins removed

2 TB fresh Lemon Juice

1/2 cup Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper, to taste

Put all of the ingredients into a food processor if you have one, and pulse until finely chopped.  This definitely tastes better after sitting in the fridge for a day.

 

 

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