August 19, 2020 Veggie Feast

Notes From The Farm

Leon and I went around yesterday and harvested and harvested and harvested…  The farm is showing it’s bounty right now.  August is definitely the best time for eating fresh foods around here!  Saturdays harvest may be slightly different depending on what is ready.  Enjoy!

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Dragon Tongue Beans, Yellow Beans, Rainbow Beets, Sweet Onion, Romanesco, Basil, Salad Mix, Kale, Carrots, Cucumber and Tomatillos

New This Week

Dragon Tongue Beans

Dragon Tongue Beans were first introduced to us by one of our favorite Texans, who had a little homestead farm going on a few years back.  It’s always fun to add to the variety of vegetables we grow, so we added these to the “for sure” list years ago after trialing them in a small plot.  They produce well, which is a must, and are very tasty.  They are bigger, flatter, and juicier than green beans, giving them an all together different taste and texture.  The purple color goes away when they are cooked, so if you are trying to bribe your kids to eat this by showing them the cool purple splashes your plan will go to pieces as soon as it comes out of the pot!

Yellow Beans

I must confess, yellow beans are one of my least favorite vegetables to harvest.  After picking the beautiful, large Dragon Tongue beans, yellow beans are sooooo slender and it takes forever to get a bucketfut.  But I did it anyway because I knew you would want to eat some.

Carrots

Finally!!  I taste tested several of these for you, just to make sure they were alright.  Yep, they are.  Whenever we harvest the first carrots of the season I remember my brother’s first visit to Montana, what seems like eons ago.  It was September and we were pulling everything out of the field.  At that time we were one of the only vegetable farms in the Bitterroot and hence one of the only vegetable vendors.  We grew a lot of carrots back then and sold them hand over fist.  My brother wiped the just harvested carrot on his pants to get most of the dirt off (we didn’t have a washing station at that field) and took a bite.  I have never seen anyone so excited about a carrot before, well, except Leon and I.  He exclaimed “That was the best carrot I have ever eaten!” And he was and still is absolutely correct.  Fresh farm carrots are the best you will ever eat.

Tomatillos

Okay, we didn’t give you very many tomatillos because they are just starting to ripen.  This is a little tease.  For those of you new to tomatillos they are the base of many salsas.  They are sticky little globes with a paper covering that you have to remove which makes them a pain in the a#* to work with.  After you get the paper covering off it’s best to give them a wash to get the stickiness off.  You could let these tomatillos out on your counter for a while to let them ripen up a bit more, if any of them have a crack in the skin you will want to use that one right away.  Tomatillos have a distinct musky, kind of sweet and sour taste that some people adore and others….not so much.  They can be eaten raw, but are often roasted or grilled,  They can be added to stews, any salsas, and are used in many Southwest and Mexican dishes.

August 12, 2020 Veggie Feast

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Red Cabbage, Green Beans, Kale, Dill Weed, Salad, and a Surprise

New This Week

Red cabbage

Red cabbage displays brilliant leaves of either a crimson or purple color with white veins running through them, and with its hue comes additional health benefits not found in green cabbage.

Red cabbage is often used raw for salads and coleslaw. This vegetable can be eaten cooked. It is the traditional accompanying side dish paired with many German meals—most notably, Sauerbrauten.

Keep cabbage cold to help retain its vitamin C content.

Green Beans

Store unwashed fresh beans pods in a plastic bag kept in the refrigerator crisper. Whole beans stored this way should keep for about seven days. Just prior to using the green beans, wash them under running water. Remove both ends of the beans by either snapping them off or cutting them with a knife. Green beans are a classic ingredient in Salad Nicoise, a French cold salad dish that combines steamed green beans with tuna fish and potatoes. Sautéd green beans are great with shiitake mushrooms. Or prepare the perennial favorite, green beans almondine, by sprinkling slivered almonds on healthy sautéed beans.

Recipes

Healthy Vegetable Sides - green beans in a white bowl

Green Bean Salad with Lemon and Dill Recipe

Source: Simply Recipes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans
  • 3 tablespoons fresh dill, minced
  • 3 tablespoons red onion, minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon (about 1 1/2 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon + 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Instructions

1 Trim the green beans: In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon kosher salt. You want the water to be salty like the sea.

While the water is coming to a boil, wash and trim the stem ends of your green beans.

2 Blanch the green beans: Add trimmed beans to water. Let boil for about 3 to 4 minutes. The color of the beans should be bright, and the texture cooked, but firm tender. Taste a bean to make sure it has the right texture.

Strain the beans and run under cold water to slow the cooking process. Shake off excess water, and pat them dry with a towel.

3 Make the dressing and toss to coat: In the bottom of your serving bowl, whisk together dill, minced onion, Dijon mustard, olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper. Add beans. Toss to coat.

Sesame Cabbage Rice Noodle Salad with Crispy Tofu ( or chicken)

Sesame Cabbage Noodle Salad with rice noodles, crispy tofu, scallions cilantro and crunchy roasted peanuts. Vegan, Gluten-free! | www.feastingathome.com #crispytofu #noodles #noodlesalad #cabbagesalad #asiancabbagesalad #vegan

Source: Feasting at Home

ingredients

  • 2 ounces vermicelli rice noodles
  • ½ head purple cabbage- finely sliced
  • 4 scallions, sliced at a diagonal
  • ¼ cup finely sliced red onion
  • 12 ounces baked or seared tofu ( see notes) or shredded chicken
  • 1 bunch cilantro ( chopped)
  • 2– 3 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
  • ¼ cup roasted peanuts ( optional)
  • handful sunflower sprouts ( optional)

Sesame Dressing:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey (or agave or cane sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon finely minced ginger ( or ginger paste)
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce or GF Liquid Amino Acids
  • ¾ teaspoon salt, more to taste
  • squeeze of lime

instructions

Set water to boil for the noodles.

Decide what tofu or chicken option you want to use and start that process. ( see notes on Feasting at home page)

Thinly slice the cabbage and add it to a big bowl. Add the scallions, red onion  and cilantro and toss.

Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a small bowl and toss with the cabbage.

Soak the noodles in the hot water ( turn heat off) for 1-2 minutes, stirring until just pliable. Do not boil the noodles! Just let them get tender and pliable. Al dente is perfect, they will get softer in the salad. Rinse with cold water, until they feel very cold. Drain well and add to the cabbage salad. Toss.

Add your choice of protein. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and roasted peanuts and sprouts if using.

Enjoy!

August 5, 2020 Veggie Feast

Notes From The Farm

Leon has been busy weed eating and irrigating during the heat wave.

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Romanesco, Beets, Ailsa Craig Sweet Onion, Summer Squash, Potatoes, Parsley, Fennel

New This Week

Romanesco

Romanesco is in the brassica family along with cauliflower and broccoli.  The unique chartreuse color and fractal pattern make it one of the more unusual and beautiful vegetables to behold.  Romanesco is mild flavored and crunchy.  It can be eaten raw, but also steamed, roasted or baked.

Beets

Young beets are tender, and full of flavor.  Surprisingly (or not) the greens have more nutrients than the roots and taste much like Swiss Chard.  They cook up like spinach, but can also be eaten raw and added to a salad.

Sweet Onions

In our trails Ailsa Craig onions beat the traditional Walla Walla onion.  They are equally sweet,  and uniform in size, but somehow store longer.  These onions are sweet and mild and a great addition to a summer meal.  They can be left out on the counter, or in the fridge.

Yellow zucchini

Yellow summer squash is a little splash of sunshine.  Use as you would zucchini.

July 29, 202 Veggie Feast

This Week’s Veggie Feast

 

Green Cabbage, Golden Cauliflower, Cucumber, Epazote, Summer Squash (or Zucchini), Lettuce Mix, & Fennel

New This Week

Green Cabbage

We are quite pleased with all of the brassicas this year, including the cabbage.  It stores well in the fridge, but you are sure to get more in the coming weeks so start eating!

Flame Cauliflower

Golden cauliflower is beautiful to behold.  It tastes just like cauliflower but has more beta carotene also found in carrots) than the white variety.  Saveur wrote “The Story behind Orange Cauliflower”, which is a short, easy read on its origins.  Use just as you would a white cauliflower.  Stores pretty well covered in the fridge.

Cucumber

Cooling, crunchy and long awaited, by me at least.

Epazote

Why recreate the wheel?  The folks over at The Spruce Eats wrote an informative, comprehensive article about epazote.  History, uses, recipe ideas etc.  Tell us what you think.

Recipes

Roasted Cauliflower Hummus

Source: Well Fed Soul

Ingredients

  • 1 head of cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
  • 1 tsp. salt, divided
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/3 c. tahini
  • 1/4 c. ice cold water
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp. za’atar seasoning
  • 2 Tbsp. cilantro, minced

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F and line a baking tray with parchment paper. Arrange cauliflower florets on the tray; drizzle with 1 Tbsp. olive oil and season with 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Toss with your fingers. Roast at 400 F for 30 minutes, flipping halfway. Remove and cool.

  2. Once cooled, add the cauliflower to a food processor. Add the remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil, remaining 1/2 tsp. salt, garlic, tahini, cold water, and lemon juice. Process 5-7 minutes, scraping down the sides, until smooth and creamy. Pour into a bowl and sprinkle za’atar and cilantro over top. Refrigerate up to 1 week.

    Cauliflower Soup with Hazelnuts and Bacon

    Source:  Epicurious

    INGREDIENTS

      • 1/2 cup blanched hazelnuts
      • 1 medium head of cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into small florets
      • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
      • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
      • 4 slices thick-cut bacon (about 4 ounces)
      • 1 small fennel bulb, chopped
      • 1 small onion, chopped
      • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
      • 1/3 cup dry white wine or water
      • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
      • 3/4 cup heavy cream
      • 2 bay leaves

    Instructions

      1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Toast hazelnuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, 10–12 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop.
      2. While the nuts are cooling, increase oven to 400°F. Toss cauliflower and 2 Tbsp. oil on another baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing once, until florets are browned all over and tender, 30–35 minutes.
      3. Meanwhile, cut bacon crosswise into 1/2″ pieces. Heat a heavy pot over medium and cook bacon, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, 10–12 minutes. Transfer to paper towels.
      4. Cook fennel, onion, and garlic in drippings in pot, stirring occasionally, until onion and fennel are very soft, 8–10 minutes. Add wine and cook until mostly evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add roasted cauliflower, broth, cream, and bay leaves; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until cauliflower is very tender, 20–25 minutes. Pluck out bay leaves; discard. Let mixture cool slightly.
      5. Working in batches, purée cauliflower mixture until very smooth. Strain back into pot; season with salt and pepper.
      6. Just before serving, ladle soup into bowls; top with bacon and nuts and drizzle with oil.
    1. Do Ahead
      1. Soup can be made 3 days ahead. Let cool; cover and chill soup and bacon separately.

     

     

July 22, 2020 Veggie Feast

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Fennel, Broccoli, Snap Peas, Salad Mix, Basil

New This Week

Fennel

Small bulbs are best for salads since they are tender, while larger bulbs are best suited for braising and baking. Fennel makes an interesting substitute for celery, and it takes well to braising, sautéing, grilling, and eating raw in salads. The feathery greens can be used for garnish or for seasoning egg salad, potato salad, or seafood dishes. Since the stalks are stringy, they are best used in soup stocks or throw them on the BBQ for aromatic smoke, cut off the stalks just where they emerge from the bulb. Fennel has a core, which is visible once the bulb is cut in half.  If the bulb is small it isn’t necessary to remove the core, but if the bulb is large the core will need to be removed with a paring knife. Fennel pairs well with olive oil, butter, thyme, orange, lemon, tomatoes, potatoes, olives, garlic, Parmesan and Gruyere cheese. If thinly sliced, the bulb makes a nice addition to an antipasti platter or goes well with pork.

Keep fennel refrigerated in a plastic bag, but try to use it sooner than later, as it tends to dry out quickly and the outer layers will brown.

Broccoli

The part of broccoli we usually eat are the immature flower head.  But don’t throw out the stem!  When fresh broccoli stems are pretty darn tender and tasty, with a milder flavor.  They can be roasted, baked or steamed.

Sugar Snap Peas

Sugar snap peas are basically candy in vegetable form.  Juicy, sweet, crunchy, perfect for snacking on a hot day.  You can snap the top off and peel the “string” along the length of the pea pod.  Or, for extra fiber, you can just use your teeth a bit more.  Totally delicious!  Best stored in the fridge.

Recipe

Shaved Fennel Salad

shaved-fennel-salad-600-a-520x3491 fennel bulb, shaved thin
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon of chopped fresh basil leaves
1 Tbsp chopped flat-leafed parsley
2 Tbsp shaved Parmesan cheese

Gently toss all of the ingredients together.

Prep time: 8 min

source:  adapted from Simply Recipes

 

July 15, 2020 Veggie Feast

Notes From The Farm

Sorry if you don’t like surprises but part of this week’s share is going to be a mystery.  In each box there will be one or two herbs and a leafy green, we just haven’t decided what they are going to be yet;)

Other news: Leon finished haying in record time this year!  Sometimes it drags on for weeks when the old equipment breaks down.  This year all he had to contend with is a flat tire on the baler.  We also finished the bulk of the weeding!  Mulching and minimum till have made a tremendous difference in slowing down the weeds.

Veggie news: Finally starting to get into some of the hardier veggies.  Potatoes, zucchini, summer squash, peppers… all coming along.  The cabbage and cauliflower plants look amazing.  We hope they yield well.  The broccoli plants themselves look great but are setting small heads once again.  Major bummer.  We are have planted two rotations of broccoli plants this year, so cross your fingers for the second wave.

This Week’s Veggie Feast

New Potatoes, Snow Peas, Salad Mix with Nasturtiums, Greens and Herbs

New This Week

New Potatoes

New Potatoes are a favorite of many.  These potatoes are harvested early and have delicate, thin skins.  There is probably some scientific reason why they taste so good, like a starch to sugar ratio, but I am currently not interested enough to look it up.  If you like potatoes you will probably really like these.  They cook faster than more developed potatoes, and tend to break apart easily.  Best stored in the fridge and used within the week as they do not keep well.

Snow Peas

Snow peas are flat, pale green pods with barely formed peas. These tender peas can be eaten whole, and are delicious fresh, steamed, sautéed, or added to stir fries.  Peas are best used fresh but if you need to store them, put them in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. If you would like to put up peas for freezing, they will need to be blanched in boiling salted water for 30 seconds and then chilled in an ice bath before freezing.