Saturday, August 28, 2010


So, I was all excited about the cool nights for:  soups!  But then we get this heatwave, so, how's about some gazpacho with a little Mexican flair?  This one came highly recommended from a friend (who has lived South of the border no less), from Epicurious: 

Tomato Tomatillo Gazpacho

  • 1/2 pound fresh tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and quartered
  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatoes, chopped, divided
  • 1/2 cup chopped white onion, divided
  • 1 fresh serrano chile, coarsely chopped, including seeds
  • 1 garlic clove, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro

puree tomatillos, half of tomatoes, and half of onion with chile, garlic, vinegar, and 1 1/4 teaspoons salt in a blender until smooth.
Force through a medium-mesh sieve into a bowl, discarding solids.
Stir in remaining tomatoes and onion, water, oil, and cilantro. Chill until cold, at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.

Also recommended from a fellow CSAer, LeAnn Smith:

Here's a swiss chard recipe that I really liked.  I used fresh farm share tomatoes instead of the diced, I also used the onion and garlic from you guys.


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Abundance is right!

If Anyone is wondering why I seem in a daze for the next few weeks, it's due to Francis Michael May, born Friday the 13th, 7 pounds, seven ounces (I'm definitely going to get a numerologist in on that one).  We will still be having all the veg, just have to thank Jessyloo in advance for working her self silly for a week or two while I get it together.  Got a nice set of beans coming and the brasicaas are so far free of sweet midge (super small fly that has messed them up in previous two years, and has wreaked havoc with spring kale).

Couldn't help but include this shot of Ciaran and I enjoying Champy's Birthday.  All the other mascots in town come to help him celebrate.  I bet you didn't know that both Ponderosa steakhouse and Hannaford's have mascots.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Abundance: canning and freezing, flatbread and zucchini caponata

Enjoying the abundance?  I am.  Although, it can be overwhelming, as well as our intentions of what to do with all of it.  As in, canning, etc.  But, I know with a little extra effort, in the middle of the winter, I will be thanking myself... as well as Josh, because, if anyone desires more tomatoes, we can contact him and get them for 1.50$ a pound!  Nice, eh?  So, just drop him (not me :), I just am the recipe girl) an email at

So, the little extra effort.  First of all:  Tomatoes can just go into the freezer in a freezer bag, whole.  Then throw them in soups or sauces or whatever.  Not too much effort, if you have the space and no desire to can.  And second and third: tomato sauce and salsa recipes.  Both could also go into the freezer, or canned.

Tomato Sauce
from Alice Waters Art of Simple Food

Peel, seed, and dice 2 lbs ripe tomatoes.
Save the juice, strain out the seeds and add juice to tomatoes.
Peel and smash 5 garlic cloves
Add garlic to 1/4 of olive oil in a pot over medium heat.
When garlic sizzles, add tomatoes in juice with a large pinch of salt.

Cook at a simmer for 15 minutes.  Pass through a food mill for a smooth sauce.
Add some herbs a few minutes before done.
Add some onion and saute before adding garlic
pinch of chile for spice...

(my own additon) Or why not saute other veggies and throw 'em in (eggplant...)

Salsa canning recipe
, from my archives:

Throw together:
4-5 jalapenos, do not remove seeds
3 green peppers, chopped
8 cups chopped tomatoes, do not remove seeds or skin
6 carrots, chopped
3 medium onions, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tbsp salt
1 6oz can tomato paste
1/2-1 cup of vinegar

Also,  as I'm not going to be around next week, and I'm not positive I'll be able to be online.  If so, I will email out the veggie list, but consider this next week's recipe, as I will be quite occupied.  This one is for a simple flatbread for using to make an sort of veggie concoction on top of. 

Oat-Whole Grain Flatbread (from my Mother-in-law, who got it from a Quaker Oats recipe pamphlet from the 60s.)
2/3 cup milk
1/4 veggie oil
1 1/4 cup flour
3/4 cup oat flour (just grind up some oats.), or substitute 1/3 cup flour if you don't have
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt

Combine all the dry ingredients, then add milk and oil.  Knead 10 times.  Bake at 425 for 7 minutes.  Add toppings, bake again until golden, about 10 minutes.  We usually do pizza toppings, either a red sauce or pesto, both are good. 

Lastly, a link from a fellow CSAer, Keren Turner, for yummy zucchini caponata.  Thanks!


Saturday, August 07, 2010

Shell Beans and Summer Vegetables Stewed in Their Own Juices

Today's recipe is from Deborah Madison's Local Flavors, my workhorse cookbook for cooking from the CSA and farmer's market.  The recipe is the most used of all the rest in the book... I don't follow it too closely--I throw in what I have, and if something is missing or substituted, that's fine.  That said, definitely don't skip the basil puree!

Shell beans and Summer Vegetables Stewed in their own Juices:

  • T oil (sunflower or olive oil (save 3 T for Basil Puree))
  • 2 bay leaves
  • onions (chopped into large pieces)
  • cloves garlic (plump, peeled and halved (1 clove set aside for Basil Puree))
  • thyme sprigs (fresh)
  • sage leaves
  • 12  small carrots (3-5")
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3⁄4 lb new potatoes (small)
  • 1⁄2 lb beans (yellow wax or green, ends trimmed)
  • tomatoes (medium, peeled, seeded and chopped into large pieces, juice reserved)
  • 1 bell pepper (yellow or orange if possible, cut into 1-inch strips)
  • lb summer squash (cut into large pieces)
  • lb shelling peas (shelled)
  • 1⁄2 c basil leaves (packed)
  • 1⁄2 c parmesan cheese (grated, optional)

1 . Warm the 3 T. oil with the bay leaves in a large casserole or dutch oven over low heat. When fragrant, add the onions, 6 of the garlic cloves, 2 of the thyme sprigs, and the sage. Cover and cook while you prepare the vegetables.
2 . Leave small carrots whole or cut fat ones into 4-inch lengths. Add them to the pot right away since they take the longest to cook. Season with salt and pepper. If the potatoes are like large marbles, leave them whole. But quarter large ones and cut fingerlings in half lengthwise. Lay the potatoes on top of the onions and carrots. Cut the beans into 3-inch pieces and add them, along with the rest of the veggies except the shelling beans, to the pot, seasoning each layer with salt and pepper.
3 . Strain the tomato juice over all, than cover and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 40 minutes to an hour. If tightly covered, the vegetables will produce plenty of flavorful juices. If the pot seems dry, add a few tablespoons water or white wine.
4 . While the veggies are cooking, simmer the shell beans in water to cover with the remaining garlic and thyme and a little oil. When tender, after 30-45 minutes, season with salt and pepper. Add the beans, with any liquid, to the pot.
5 . Make the Basil Puree shortly before serving: Chop the basil and garlic in a food processor with the oil and enough water to make a puree. Stir in the cheese .
6 . Serve the veggies in soup plates and spoon the Basil Puree over them.


Friday, August 06, 2010

High Summer, No Greens

So, we're right at the midpoint of the farm season, and I haven't done much blogging, in part because Carin is doing such a good job keeping everyone up to date and in the know re veggies, but thought I'd give some thoughts from the field. 

As any of our long time members know, every year is different, and this one seems to be no exception: we will be giving out melons the earliest ever, and they taste great, and furthermore, for the first time we will be doing two weeks of melons.  Tomatoes also doing well, and we are likely to move up to two pounds a person for next week, but what is lacking this time of year is greens.  It seems odd to me, Chard and Kale are such standbys at Open Heart, but this year one third of our kale patch got wiped out by sweet midge, a little devilish fly that likes to kill the growing center of brasicas (cabbage, cale, broc, etc) - which is why I planted a super-ton of collards along with our normal fall planting of cauliflower and broc, and it looks good, and I suspect it will be ready for eating in a few weeks.

Most other things in the field are coming along smashingly.  The only issue with the pumpkins is how to get them into your hands: they are giant.  You might have noticed all cucurbits are doing fairly well this summer, the cukes and squash are constant.  It also looks like the eggplant is setting up for a fall run, lots of flowers I think helped by these cool nights we are starting to get. 

I have been trying to seed lots of greens too, like arugala and a second round of spinach, so eventually some of those will start to be coming our way. 

Also been thinking about this shady section of our newer field.  It has never produced that well, most veg just doesn't like shade, even if it doesn't like super hot either (like you think lettuce or peas or spinach might do well with shade, but I think what they really like is spring and fall), so, pictured right is the answer to all our shade issues, jerusalem artichokes.  Besides being a perennial cutting flower for members they will yield a little tuber that doesn't really taste at all like an artichoke to me, but is a yummy compliment to all those other ones you get in the winter, at least something different.