This Week’s CSA
Zucchini, yellow crookneck summer squash, sungold tomatoes, cucumber, graffiti cauliflower, Walla onions, lettuce mix, lemon basil, carrots, garlic, dragon tongue beans and…
Elderberry shrubs are native to Montana. Birds love them, along with a few people. They are a bit sour and seedy for most to eat raw. They are often made into pies and syrups. The Mountain Rose Blog gives several ideas on making syrups. Also see recipe below. Elderberries syrup is used to treat colds and flu. It also tastes yummy, so maybe you want to eat it when your nose isn’t all stuffed up and you can actually taste it.
More beans. They are yellow.
Rumex crispus or yellow dock is native to Europe and western Asia. This plant is often thought of as a weed because it is found in disturbed sites. It is now found throughout North America and has a myriad of uses. It’s root is a well-known medicinal and the young leaves can be eaten. The flavor is a bit lemony. Best used as a lightly cooked green, careful not to over-cook, can turn to mush!
Homemade Elderberry Syrup
- 1 part fresh, fully ripe black elderberries (*see note for dried)
- 2 parts water
- 1 part raw honey (check local farmer’s markets or health stores)
- optional: bit of cinnamon stick and/or ginger root (dried or fresh)
Gather the fresh berries and make sure no stems remain. (The stems have some level of toxic compounds in them, try to get them all if possible.)
Place the berries in a saucepan and cover with twice as much water. So, if you gathered 1 cup of berries, use 2 cups of water. If you’d like, add a piece of cinnamon stick and/or dried or fresh ginger. These are both warming herbs and great for when you feel like you’re catching a cold. They also add an extra level of tastiness!
Place the pan over a medium burner and bring to a simmer. Adjust the heat as needed, to keep the berries at a low simmer and cook for around 30 minutes, smashing the berries with a fork occasionally as they cook.
Strain the juice from the cooked elderberries into a glass jar or pitcher. Discard the seeds and pulp, as the seeds should not be eaten.
Let the juice cool to a comfortably warm, but not cold, temperature, then stir in an equal amount of raw honey.
At this point, you can store the finished syrup in your refrigerator for a few weeks (or a month or two if you add a generous amount of brandy, vodka or an alcohol-based tincture as a preservative) or freeze the finished syrup in ice trays and store the individual cubes in freezer bags. Always thaw herbal mixtures in the refrigerator overnight, since high heat and microwaves will destroy many of the beneficial properties.
Source: The Nerdy Farm Wife
Toum (Garlic Paste)
Note: My friend Katie tried this recipe last fall. This condiment is to die for if you love garlic. She said it got milder after a few days but when she first made the toum it was quite zippy. It makes a lot so you may want to half the recipe.
Requirement: Must love garlic.
This is one of the more versatile condiments to have on hand. It can outlast the sprouting fresh garlic in your pantry and is at the ready for marinades, dips and sauces and as a spread for any savory sandwich. Its flavor will mellow only slightly over several weeks.
If you have access to a high-powered, commercial-grade food processor, the paste will turn out even fluffier and lighter than if you use a standard food processor.
Make Ahead: The garlic paste can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
- Scant 2 cups peeled garlic cloves (from about 7 heads)
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 cups canola oil, or more as needed
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from 1 or 2 lemons)
- 1/3 cup water
Combine the garlic cloves and salt in a food processor. Puree until as smooth as possible, stopping to scrape down the sides of the work bowl as needed.
With the motor running (for the next 4 steps), gradually add 1 1/2 cups of the oil in the thinnest possible stream; do not rush the process or the mixture will separate. Stop to scrape down the bowl.
Gradually add 1/2 cup more of the oil in the same manner; the mixture should begin to set up a bit, with the consistency of creamy cooked grits.
Gradually add the lemon juice. The mixture will become lighter and whiter.
Add 1/2 cup more of the oil in the same gradual fashion as before, then slowly add the water. The mixture will loosen but should not be runny.
Gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup of oil. The resulting garlic paste should be creamy white and fluffy, like beaten egg whites. If not, keep the motor running and add more oil to achieve the right color and consistency.
Transfer to a container with a tight-fitting lid; seal and refrigerate for a few hours before using, and up to 3 weeks.
Source: Splendid Table