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Monthly Archives: July 2011

Here is an omelette recipe shared by one of our CSA members, Fred Kaltreider.  If anyone else has a favorite recipe to share, please send it my way.

“Here’s a recipe I made up that uses the chard stems…and two pans.
I’m not giving measurements for this omelette, as they are flexible.” – Fred Kaltreider

Ingredients:
Swiss chard (or kale)
Garlic scapes (if you still have them) or garlic or bits of onion
Eggs at room temperature, whisked
Butter
Grapeseed oil
Prepared mustard
Pine nuts, toasted

Stem and chop chard, separating stem pieces first, and cutting them into 1/8-inch pieces.

Dry the stem pieces, but not the rest of the chard

Saute stems and garlic scapes (both in thin pieces) gently in butter or a mix of butter and oil, until soft

Toast pine nuts (or almonds) until they start to brown (in a pan on the stove or in a toaster oven at 350 degrees)

Steam the chopped chard in the clinging water with some prepared mustard, covered, in a saucepan or skillet.

Add eggs to the pan with the stems and make an omelette you will with the mustardy chard and pine nuts.

When you make an omelet like this, the green bits show on the outside.
Grated cheese is a nice addition to the filling.

Fred Kaltreider

Expected Harvest

beans – regular green beans and maybe some royal burgundy beans (a purple-podded variety)
cabbage – red or green
carrots
cucumbers – lemon, pickling (please see below) and slicing
lettuce mix
onions – fresh, sweet, white onions
potatoes – dark red norland (a red-skinned, white-fleshed variety)
summer squash & zucchini
sweet corn – a bi-color variety called brocade
swiss chard
tomatoes – cherry, heirloom and red varieties

Bonus Items
basil
cilantro
parsley, flat leaf
jalapeno peppers

 

Pickling Size Share:

We are still harvesting some nice pickling cucumbers so we will continue to offer the pickling size share of five pounds.

Right now we have a lot of beautiful chard waiting to be harvested and taken home to be made into someone’s meal.  Below are some recipes to help encourage you to try it or maybe even to eat more of it.  And, if  any of you have a favorite way to prepare Swiss Chard you’d be willing to share, I’d love to hear about it.

 

MILANESE STYLE CHARD

Serves 4 to 6

1 bunch (1 pound) swiss chard, trimmed of coarse stems and coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
6 scallions including green tops, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
Pinch nutmeg
1/4 cup chopped prosciutto or ham
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts or chopped walnuts for garnish

In a large deep skillet heat olive oil, add garlic and scallions and sauté until softened and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes.  Add chard, parsley, basil, nutmeg, prosciutto or ham and mix together will.  Cover the skillet and cook over medium heat until tender and wilted, 3 to 5 minutes.  Mix in Parmesan cheese and then add salt and pepper to taste.  Serve garnished with pine nuts or walnuts.

Kitchen Garden by Renée Shepherd

BRIGHT LIGHTS CHARD GRATIN

Serves 4 as a main dish; 6 as a side dish

2 pounds chard, including half of the stems
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 onion, finely chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup fresh bread crumbs
1 garlic clove, minced
3 tablespoons chopped dill or parsley
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup milk or cream or a mixture of cream and stock
1 cup crumbled fresh goat cheese

Separate the leaves and chard stems.  Wash the leaves in plenty of water, then coarsely chop them.  Trim the ragged edges off the stems, wash them well, then dice them into small pieces.

Melt half the butter in a wide skillet over medium heat.  Add the onion and chard stems and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion has begun to brown a bit, about 20 minutes.  Add the chard leaves, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt, and cook until they’re wilted and tender, another 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400ºF and lightly oil a 2-quart gratin dish.  Melt half the remaining butter in a small skillet and add the bread crumbs, garlic, and dill.  Cook, stirring for about a minute, then scrape the crumbs into a bowl and return the pan to the heat.

Melt the last tablespoon of butter, stir in the flour, then whisk in the milk.  Simmer for 5 minutes, season with 1/2 teaspoon salt, and add to the chard mixture.  Add the cheese, then taste the mixture, correct for salt, and season with pepper.

Pour the mixture into the prepared dish and cover with the bread crumbs.  Bake until heated through and golden on the surface, about 25 minutes.  Let settle a few minutes before serving.

Local Flavors  by Deborah Madison

CHARD BRAISED WITH GINGER, CILANTRO, AND RICE

Serves 4 to 6

2 big bunches chard, coarse stems removed
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, diced
1/4 cup white rice
2 tablespoons finely chopped ginger
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 cup chopped cilantro stems and leaves
Sea salt
Plain yogurt, or lemon wedges

Wash the chard well, then chop, but don’t dry them.

Heat the oil in a wide, heavy pot over medium heat.  Add the onion, rice, ginger, cumin, and paprika.  Stir to coat with the oil.  Cook for 2 minutes, then add the cilantro and the chard greens.  Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt, cover the pan, and cook until the volume has reduce, 10 to 15 minutes.  Give everything a stir, then reduce the heat to low, re-cover, and cook slowly for 40 minutes.  There should be ample moisture in the pot, but check once or twice to make sure that nothing is sticking on the bottom.  If the pan seems dry, add a few tablespoons of water.

Cook until the greens are really tender, 10 to 15 minutes more.  Serve warm or at room temperature, with yogurt spooned over the top or a squeeze of fresh lemon.

Local Flavors  by Deborah Madison

by Zoë Abram

Our harvest days go like this: First, we harvest greens, ideally when the leaves are still wet with dew – these hot days, that includes salad mix and chard. Later, we move into digging roots, picking fruits and other crops that won’t wilt. And then come the longer tasks. Green beans have unseated the peas recently as our longest harvest task. We leave beans for last also because it’s best to harvest when their leaves are dry — disease spreads quickly on wet leaves as we rifle through the plants. Soon tomatoes will join beans as a mid-day task, as they are also susceptible to transfer of disease this way.

So usually around 11 AM, we hunker down in the rows of green beans for the long haul, moving fingers fast through the narrow maxibel french beans or the purple royal burgundy beans. (Did you know? Purple beans are still “green” beans … the name green beans is given to all beans picked in their pod, to differentiate from dry beans.) As our fingers become more practiced in feeling for beans, we find space for our minds and conversations to wander.

Growing beans is a good learning experience – an exercise in precision and patience. Before we direct seed the beans, we carefully mark straight rows with chains behind the rototiller. We use a single row cultivator to weed between rows as the beans grow.  As I practiced navigating it through the rows, in just the right spots at just the right depth, I learned to appreciate those straight lines. I’m learning that you re-trace over and over the mistakes you make early in the season. When you accidentally draw a curve at the end of a row with the seeder, you must then steer the cultivator over that same irregular path.

Beetles love beans too. Bean leaf beetles can chew the leaves until they look like lace. This season, our first planting was eaten pretty badly by the bean leaf beetle, but they have recovered and are producing well. As summer comes, so do the Mexican bean beetles, a relative of the ladybug that can be devastating to bean plants when they are young. We see the spiky, yellow larvae of the Mexican bean beetle feasting on the underside of the leaves of our older bean plants, and also on the flowers and pods. We are using row cover, which is a porous, cloth-like protective covering for plants on our newest planting. So far, no noticeable damage to the young plants!

We predict a bumper bean harvest this season, with several more varieties on the way. Eat yours raw as a snack, simply steamed, or roasted in a hot oven with olive oil and salt. Add some to your potato or pasta salads. Or, here is a pickling recipe for “dilly beans,” my favorite summer treat. Keep them in your fridge for a quick and easy pickle, or process them in a hot water canning bath for 10 minutes and you can preserve summer for months!

Pickled Green Beans (aka Dilly Beans)
from Food in Jars, adapted from So Easy to Preserve

2 pounds green beans, trimmed to fit your jars
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 teaspoons dill seed or some fresh dill
4 cloves garlic
2 1/2 cups white vinegar (5%)
2 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup pickling salt (use a bit more if you’ve only got kosher)

Wash and trim your beans so that they fit in your jar. If you have particularly long beans, your best bet is to cut them in half, although by doing so, you do lose the visual appeal of having all the beans standing at attending.

Combine vinegar, water and salt in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. While it’s heating up, pack your beans into the jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace (distance between the tops of the beans and the rim of the jar). To each jar, add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 clove of garlic and 1 teaspoon dill seeds.
Pour the boiling brine over the beans, making sure to leave that 1/2 inch headspace. Use a plastic knife to remove air bubbles from jar by running it around the interior of the jar.

You’ve probably already met most of us at the pick-ups or farmers’ market, but in case you haven’t, here is a photo of the people who are working hard to grow and provide you with great produce this season.

From left to right are Zoe Abram, Colleen Hotchkiss, Sarah Cohen, Adrianne Witkowski, and Theresa Mycek.  Zoe and Adrianne are our full-season apprentices and Sarah and Colleen are our short season apprentices.  It has been a pleasure to get to know everyone and work together so far this season.

Expected Harvest

beans – french and maybe some royal burgundy beans, (a purple-podded variety)
cabbage – red or green
carrots
cucumbers – lemon, pickling (please see below) and slicing
eggplant – both Italian and Oriental varieties
lettuce mix
onions – fresh, sweet, white onions
peppers –  green and purple bell
potatoes – dark red norland (a red-skinned, white-fleshed variety)
radishes – french breakfast
scallions (A great dish to make with these are scallion pancakes.  I was introduce to them when Colleen, one of our apprentices made them for dinner.  Check out this website for a recipe)
summer squash & zucchini
swiss chard (see below for some recipes)

Bonus Items:
basil
cilantro
parsley, flat leaf

 

Pickling Size Share

We are harvesting some nice pickling cucumbers right now, and we would like to offer you the opportunity to receive a quantity that will enable you to make a batch of pickles.  A unit of pickling cucumbers will be five pounds.  We should have them during the next few weeks, and we will have enough for about 7 members to take 5 pounds each this week.  It will be first come, first serve, and to spread the bounty, we may end up limiting people to taking this quantity only once this season.  (I suppose this may change depending on how many people are interested in pickling.)  We don’t know how many of you are interested in pickling, but we thought we’d make the opportunity available to you.  Feel free to ask us for recipes or suggestions if you need any help.