Week 3 ~ CSA Newsletter June 6 – June 12, 2011

This Weeks Share: Head Lettuce, Scallions (Green Onions), Rapini (Broccoli Raab), Green Garlic, Swiss Chard/Spinach mix,  and Pea-Shoots.

Lettuce: Again we have full heads of lettuce in the share. In the early weeks of our growing season, the lettuces can make a heavy appearance in your share. Happy Salad eating!

Scallions (Green Onion): Actual sweet little green onions will make it into the share this week. Most people call them scallions, and they are small onions grown mostly for their mild flavor and the greens. These little spring onions won’t ever be mature, bulb onions. They are a delight in everything. They work  nicely (though distinctively different) as the green garlic in any dish from fresh salad to stir-fry.

Rapini (Raab): This week we have true rapini for everyone. This is the seed rapini selected to grow just what you will be eating, delicious rapini heads with a flavor somewhere between kale and asparagus. They are actually stalks of turnip greens that have been bred and selected for the shoot tips tips rather than the roots (turnip). Originally an Italian vegetable, rapini is now enjoying more renowned status. They look like mini-broccoli-heads, and have a broccoli/horseradishy flavor which mildly hints at the mustard genealogy. Parboil stalks for a minute or two, then saute for 3-5 minutes in heaps of green garlic and olive oil. We love rapini, cooked with our other greens (start with rapini as it takes a little longer) and Bragg’s liquid amino’s. Yum.

Rapini with garlic, sundried tomatoes and red pepper flakes

  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, cut into thin strips
  • 2 T toasted pine nuts
  • 3-4 cloves of head garlic or 2-3 stalks green garlic
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flake
  • 1 bunch parboiled rapini
  1. Heat oil, garlic and red pepper flakes in medium skillet over medium heat until garlic begins to sizzle, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  2. Increase heat to medium high, add parboiled rapini and sundried tomatoes and cook, stirring to coat with oil, until heated through, about 1-3 minutes.
  3. Season to taste with salt, serve immediately with the toasted pine nuts on top. This is GREAT with your pasta of choice.

Swiss Chard/Spinach mix: More yummy chard and perpetual spinach for your braising greens of the week. This spinach is more like chard than like baby spinach, but very tasty and mild. Remove stalks for best consistency while cooking, small leaved stalks okay. Does perfect in a light braise with a nice soft cheese and something sweet like dried apricots, raisins or candied walnuts.

Organic Warm Greens with Balsamic Vinaigrette and Chevre  from (with minor adaptations) Recipes from America’s Small Farms

  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves pressed (or green garlic minced)
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced white or cremini mushrooms
  • 3 cups greens (kale, swiss chard, collards or spinach) rinsed, dried and torn into pieces.
  • 2 cups lettuce or baby mesclun mix
  • salt and freshly milled pepper to taste
  • 8-12 ounces firm chevre, sliced thin or crumbled (we often use feta)
  • 1/4 cup pistachios, toasted
  1. Whisk together the oil, vinegar, garlic, honey and paprika in a small bowel.
  2. Bring 1/4 cup of the mixture to a simmer in medium saucepan over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Add kale greens (kale, swiss chard, collards or spinach) and cook just until it wilts, about 1-3 minutes.
  4. Toss the hot mixture over the lettuce greens in a large bowel adding salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Top, once plated, with the cheese and toasted pistachios
  6. Dress with the oil and vinegar mixture

Green Garlic: Yep. There’s more. We hope you can still enjoy some of this unique, eating in season spring vegetable item. Members have been asking about a way to preserve the green garlic. Can you make this sublime flavor last beyond the days of spring? I do know that pickling or preserving in oil, can produce a blueish mixture from garlic sulfurs reacting with minuscule amounts of copper in water to form copper sulfate. The FDA has warnings about storing garlic in oil. I hope to have a nice recipe from my own experiences later this summer…..stay tuned.

Pea Shoots and Tendrils: It’s exciting to have pea shoots for you this week…..but it also means that actual peas have a ways to go. The delicate and beautiful shoots of our pea plants are being harvested for your share, because they are lovely and taste wonderful, but also to encourage more branching and growth (flowering) in the plants. They are a lovely vegetable delicacy. You can add them raw to salads or lightly stir-fry. The great thing is they taste just like fresh sugary, snap peas.

Pea Shoot Salad with Chorizo, Almonds, Lentils, and Couscous  adapted Vegan recipe from Sleeping Frog Farm

  • 1 large bunch of pea shoots (washed with ends trimmed)
  • 1/2 cup cooked lentils, white beans, or fava beans
  • 1/3 cup roughly-chopped fennel bulb
  • 1/3 cup cured chorizo or soppresetta, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1/3 cup Spanish Marcona almonds
  • 1/3 cup cooked couscous or quinoa
  • 1 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Juice from one medium lemon + zest, 1/4 cup olive oil, minced green garlic and salt and pepper to taste for the dressing
  1. Chop pea sprouts into 1-inch pieces keeping the top halves separate from the base halves.
  2.  Heat olive oil in a medium sauté pan and then add the green garlic, bases of pea shoots and chopped fennel bulb.
  3. After the fennel begins to soften, add the legumes and parsley and warm.
  4. Remove from heat. Toss with chorizo together in bowl, adding dressing and salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Lay tops of pea shoots onto plates and then evenly place warmed couscous mixture over them. Top with Marcona almonds.
  6. Drizzle dressing on top of each plate and serve immediately. Top it all off with grated Parmesan if you like. The tips of pea shoots are delicious raw. They are good enough that you can do that. We were munching on them all day.

FARM NEWS: Here we are already at week 3 of our season. The amazing weekend of heat hopefully did some great work to grow the plants in the fields. We hope to be seeing more of summer and the effects soon. I am truly enjoying getting back into the routine of our pick-ups and meeting you, our fabulous members! I am getting to do more farming with our “helpers” these days…..our daughters help us the best they can, in their own special way. I hope to have some pictures up for you later this week. Things are blooming and the bees are finally busy buzzing out here…which means more food is on the way.

Thanks for your support! It means heaps.

Kip and Amy


1 Comment

Filed under CSA Newsletter, General Blogroll

One response to “Week 3 ~ CSA Newsletter June 6 – June 12, 2011

  1. The FOODday in the Oregonian this week had a few rapini recipes! Worth checking out!

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