Notes from the Farm
This is the week we have been waiting for, when we can start putting more substantial vegetables into your bags/boxes. The star of the field this week is the bright cauliflower. We grow two varieties, the golden Flame, and purple Graffiti. Some say there is a slight difference in taste, and I suppose for the cauliflower aficinados this may be so. Either way it is a feast for the eyes! We transplanted the cauliflower, brocolli, and cabbage to the field in April. Due to an unexpected drop in temperature we had to dig it up three days later and nurse it in the greenhouse for two weeks. We lost several cabbage transplants, the broccoli bolted and the cauliflower took it’s sweet time. In fact we couldn’t tell if the plants were going to produce anything until a couple of weeks ago. But here they are in all of their colorful glory.
This Week’s Veggie Feast
Carrots, Romaine, Cauliflower, Yukon Gold Potatoes, Arugula, Sweet Onions, Parsley
New This Week
The perfect size for eating raw! They store well in the fridge, take the tops off first.
Part of the cabbage family, cauliflower is composed of bunches of florets on clusters of stalks. In Mark Twain’s words, “cauliflower is nothing but cabbage with a college education.” When fresh, cauliflower has a sweet, delicate flavor that pairs well with butter, olive oil, garlic, curry, parsley, saffron, cheddar, parmesan, blue cheese, and sun dried tomatoes. Tender, fresh cauliflower can be served raw or blanched with dips and seasoned salts. Cauliflower makes a great addition to many pasta dishes, soups, stews, and curries. Stored in a perforated bag in the vegetable crisper of your refrigerator, cauliflower should last for several days. See recipes below for some fresh ideas.
- 1 head cauliflower
- olive oil to coat
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- zest of one lemon
- 2 cups cooked grain- black rice, quinoa, freekah, farro, etc….
- 2 scallions, sliced
- 1/2 cup sliced kalamata olives
- 2 tablespoons capers
- 1/2 cup Italian parsley, chopped
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
Optional Garnishes: Pickled onions, marcona almonds, chili flakes, shaved pecorino
Preheat oven to 425F
Set grains to cook on the stove. Cook and cool to room temp.
Cut cauliflower into bite-sized florets, lightly toss in olive oil, salt and lemon zest. Spread out on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast 25 minutes, or until fork-tender, turning halfway through. Let cool.
Make the dressing, whisking all in a bowl.
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2–3 garlic cloves ( optional, or sub 1–2 teaspoons granulated garlic powder)
- 1 shallot, finely chopped ( optional)
- pinch salt and pepper
- zest from one small lemon
- ⅛ cup fresh chopped parsley (or sub other herbs)
Trim the leaves and stem off the cauliflower and cut into smaller pieces. (If using a box grater, cut into quarters and see notes)
Working in 2 batches, place 1/2 the cauliflower pieces into a food processor and pulse until it is uniformly and coursely ground. Place in a large bowl, lined with paper towels. Repeat with the second half.
Pat the top with paper towels, squeezing out any excess water.
To cook, either roast or saute.
To roast, preheat oven to 425 F. Remove the paper towels and place the cauliflower on a parchment lined sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil, a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper, chopped shallot, finely minced garlic and the zest of one lemon. Toss and spread out. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until golden, giving it good toss halfway though. Garnish with fresh parsley.
To saute on the stove top, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot and saute until golden and fragrant. Add cauliflower, garlic, salt and pepper and saute for a few minutes until you begin to smell the garlic. Turn heat down to low, cover and let this steam a bit until tender, about 5-7 minutes. Uncover, continue stirring, and add lemon zest. Cook until it starts to get golden. Sprinkle with herbs right before serving.