You know you’ve had enough rain when you pull a carrot and the hole left behind immediately fills with water. . . so we are going to talk about eating food, rather than growing food today. (Although we did have fun preparing and planting our last transplants in the big greenhouse last week!)
Despite the weather we still have some really great crops. We are especially excited about the variety for this week’s pick up. Here is some of the food we have been eating (most of the recipes are approximations I found online, we don’t typically cook with recipes – although using them as guides is definitely useful if I’m trying something totally new).
Simple vegetable soup (you can add chicken, white beans, lentils, barley, pasta, rice . . . ) We used onion, shallot, celery, carrots, fennel, potatoes, garlic and lots of thyme and oregano. Some canned tomatoes would have been nice too.
Fish Tacos with Napa/Cilantro Slaw! These were really good. I don’t like the looks of a lot of the recipes online, so I’ll try to write what I did – the slaw would be good on it’s own, no tacos needed:
1 head napa (very finely chopped)
1/2 bunch cilantro (very finely chopped)
1 small red onion (very finely chopped)
1 large carrot (grated)
(mix vegetables with a fork until evenly distributed)
Make dressing in a bowl:
1/4 cup mayo or mayo substitute (we use Veganaise – we like the flavor better than mayo)
2 crushed garlic cloves
2 TBSP olive oil
1-2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 TBSP lime juice
1 tsp salt (you can add more to taste after mixing)
Whisk ingredients together until well blended. If you don’t like tang use less vinegar, or you can add sugar, but I try really hard not to use sugar because its not supposed to be good for me or something (says the lady who ate Oreo’s last night).
Taste the dressing BEFORE you put it on – if you don’t like it, doctor it first!
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Pour over the shredded vegetables and allow to mellow at least 1 hour. I usually leave it on the counter, but if I need to leave it for longer than that I will put it in the fridge.
The Fish Part – we baked Haddok in tin foil at 375 in the oven until cooked through.
The Tortilla Part – we used soft, flour tortillas and warm them on the pan before eating.
The rest – we also had arugula, black beans sauteed with roasted sweet potatoes and garlic, shredded cheddar cheese . . . .
Simple Alfredo Sauce on Rigatoni with Sauteed Onion, Peppers and Kale and Roasted Eggplant
Harvey loves Rigatoni – the large, tube pasta. He can look through them, put them on his fingers and I assume they also taste great . . . . he also like Parmesan cheese. Like, he would chew on the block if I let him – which I did once by accident. So we make my version of an alfredo sauce and pasta once every week or two.
Simple Alfredo Sauce – The way I make it is pretty similar to this, but I basically halve the recipe for 1 pound of pasta. I find that a good coating is plenty, I don’t need the sauce dripping off the pasta. I also always add at least a tsp of oregano and thyme. Probably not traditional, but so yummy.
*I also cut up a carrot into Harvey sized cubes and put them in the boiling pasta water. He likes carrot and its a great way to get his veggies cooked at the same time. He’s not a big fan of the other veggies in this.
Roasted Eggplant – This is actually simple. Don’t be afraid of eggplant. Seriously. This article also debunks the myth that eggplant needs to be salted. It doesn’t. I never do anymore. This week is your last chance for Upswing Eggplant until next July.
Sauteed Onions, Peppers and Kale – I think you’ve got this. Sometime I will add a dash of sherry or white wine after I have sauteed the onions and peppers, right when I add the kale and then cover for a minute or two . . .
Shishito Peppers – none of ours are hot. They are mild, with subtle pepper flavor. This is your last chance to try them this year. We suggest tossing them in oilve oil and baking at 400+ until they are blistered and cracked. Then just sprinkle with salt and eat as soon as they are no longer too hot to eat. Its a great pre-dinner snack, something to put in the oven while you are also roasting sweet potatoes.
Harvey ate his first sweet potato of this year, finally, last night. He has ignored them, refused to try them, thrown them on the floor. But last night, our computer, which is next to our kitchen table, was on slide show mode during dinner, and a picture of me from about 4 years ago came up. In the picture I’m holding a big beautiful sweet potato up to the sky (its a great shot, definitely in my top ten favs).
When he saw it he said, “Mama. Sweet Potato! Eat It!” I began to explain to him that when you harvest a sweet potato you first have to cure it, then wash it and cook it before you can eat it. As I was talking he turned to me with a big grin, fork held high above his head, then wham, down it came, skewering a roasted sweet potato cube which went immediate into his mouth! Hazzah!!
We don’t typically worry when he does or doesn’t eat something, but I was like, come on, sweet potatoes? They are the best. We are into savory sweets over the sweet recipes, like with marshmallows, or maple syrup, but we do like to indulge on Thanksgiving!
Did you know sweet potatoes is one of the only plant food with enough nutrition for a human to survive on solely for an extended period of time? Here is a silly, but interesting Popular Science article about it. The take away: eat a wide variety of foods!
Butter Roasted Sweet Potatoes
This is a fancy version of what we do multiple times a week. Many times we don’t even bother to peel our sweet potatoes. You can cut them thinner than in this video and they will cook faster. We usually just use olive oil.
Dad Dinner. We call it Dad Dinner because Kevin usually makes dinner about once/week, maybe twice (because I love to cook and I find it therapeutic, not because we are gender normative and think women should do all the cooking, in fact, he made two fabulous dinners the last two nights).
Dad dinner is really good and healthy too: Sushi Rice with Pan Fried Tofu and stir-fried vegetables (whatever is in the fridge – napa, bok choy, kale . . . all would be good). Use the links for tips, but we feel like keeping tofu on the menu once/week is important, since for some reason it is one of Harvey’s favorite foods – and we really like it too.
Sauteed Escarole with Garlic and Parmesan – For those of you in the summer share, you will remember my blog diatribe about bitter greens. Fall escarole is one of my favorite foods. I can slurp down a whole head by myself when sauteed with oil, salt and garlic. Yum.
Arugula salad with olive oil and salt. Wash it, drizzle a little oil, sprinkle a little salt, enjoy!
Roasted Root Vegetables
We especially like carrot, beet and rutabaga together right now!!
A lot of roasting, stir frying and fresh salads at our house. We hope you are enjoying your fall share. I can’t get this song out of my head. It’s silly, but I think Weird Al said is best, to the tune of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It”: Just Eat It!
What in the Share
We are attempting a lot of choice in this next CSA pick up – we will see how it goes.
Choose 7 items:
Choose 10 Pounds:
Acorn Squash (these will be limited to one/share because they are the last of them!)
Carnival Squash (These are amazing! Don’t be afraid – they are really simple to just cut up and roast, or you can try stuffing them)
Rutabaga (they are small this year! not more 7 pound rutabaga!)
Red and Yellow Onions
Green Peppers (some) – last chance, the plants are going to die Wednesday night!
Eggplant (some) – last chance, the plants are going to die Wednesday night!
(don’t worry Thursday members, we will pick yours before they get frosted)
Broccoli/Ripe Peppers Mix 1-1.5 lbs (actual weight will be based on yield)
A Pie Pumpkin!
Just a note: from the top list, all loose, leafy vegetables want to be eaten first, while things like bok choy, napa, celery and radish will last until next week) So if you pick, for example: lettuce, arugula, kale, radish, shishito peppers, celery and napa, I would make sure to eat the lettuce, arugula and kale by next Tuesday/Thursday depending on your pick up day. So plan your menu accordingly.