October 23, 2011
October 23, 2011
What a lovely potluck this Sunday! Thank you, everyone, for coming out. It's such a pleasure welcoming you to the farm, putting faces to names, and enjoying all your tasty food. We hope you enjoyed it, too. The food was delicious!
At the suggestion of a farm member during the September potluck, we a dded a campfire to the festivities, which was a big hit. The kids seemed to love it... adults, too. And yes, roasted marshmallows are an interesting dessert following loads of organic vegetable dishes, but, you know... it's tasty... and it's autumn... and the time was just right.
This was our last potluck this season, but we look forward to many more next year. We feel it's important to have many different opportunities for us to come together. Not only is it good to have fun, but there's also the opportunity to chat with you and talk about the veggies, answer questions, get your feedback, etc. Plus, we like to introduce our members to each other, too! We have lot's of ideas for next year... if you have any, too, please let us know!
2012 Shares On Sale Now... Discount Through Nov. 10!
Purchase your share of the 2012 Harvest before November 10 & receive a members-only discount... purchases after that date, at regular price are welcome, too!
What's In Your Share?
Celery is new this week, with other crops similar to the last couple weeks. Farm-fresh celery is full-flavored, and can be used like store-bought celery & eaten raw, but may be a bit tough & stringy, which means that it may be best in cooked dishes, where it should impart excellent flavor. For any soups, casseroles or stir-fries, add chopped celery with onions & garlic at the outset to make your dish especially tasty.
Both shares get swiss chard, too. See below for more recipes, but also check out the recipes from last week. Swiss chard is packed with vitamins & minerals, but may take some getting used to for some. We have an excellent fall crop, so we hope to add it to the share again in the coming weeks.
Recipes for the Week
Swiss Chard With Currants and Pine Nuts
3 tablespoons currants, raisins, or golden raisins
2 pounds Swiss chard, stemmed and washed in several changes of water, stems diced and set aside
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 to 2 garlic cloves (to taste), minced
3 tablespoons pine nuts
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Place the raisins or currants in a bowl and pour on hot water to cover. Soak 10 minutes and drain.
2. Fill a bowl with ice water. Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil and add the chard. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, until just tender. Transfer to the bowl of ice water and let sit for a few minutes. Drain and squeeze out as much water as you can. Chop coarsely.
3. Heat the oil over medium heat in a large, heavy nonstick skillet. Add the chard stems and cook 3 to 5 minutes, until tender. Add the pine nuts and cook, stirring, until they begin to color, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, about 1 minute or just until the garlic begins to smell fragrant. Add the chopped greens and raisins or currants and toss together until they are well coated with oil and heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve, or allow to cool and serve at room temperature.
Yield: Serves 4
Advance preparation: You can make this several hours before serving. Reheat gently on top of the stove if you want to serve it hot. The blanched greens will keep in a covered bowl in the refrigerator for 3 or 4 days.
Couscous With Fennel, Chickpeas and Chard
By MARTHA ROSE SHULMAN
1/2 pound (1 1/8 cups) chickpeas, soaked in 1 quart water for four to six hours or overnight
1 bunch Swiss chard, stemmed, leaves washed and coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 leek, white part only, cleaned and sliced
2 medium or 1 large fennel bulb, trimmed (save fronds), cored and chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon coriander seeds, ground
1 teaspoon caraway seeds, ground
2 teaspoons cumin seeds, ground
1 tablespoon harissa (more to taste; substitute 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper if harissa is unavailable), plus additional for serving
1 tablespoon tomato paste dissolved in 1/2 cup water
Salt to taste
1 1/3 cups couscous
1. Drain the chickpeas and transfer to a large pot. Add 1 1/2 quarts water. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer one hour while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
2. Tear the chard leaves off the stems. Wash the stems and dice. Wash the leaves thoroughly and chop coarsely. Set aside. Chop the fennel fronds, and set aside.
3. Heat the oil over medium heat in a heavy casserole, Dutch oven or, if you have one, in the bottom of a couscousier. Add the onion, leek, fennel and a generous pinch of salt, and cook, stirring, until tender, five to eight minutes. Add the chard stems, and stir together for a couple of minutes until they begin to soften. Add the garlic and ground spices, and stir together for 30 seconds to a minute until the garlic is fragrant. Add the harissa or cayenne and the dissolved tomato paste, and stir together for another minute or two. Add the chickpeas with their cooking liquid, plus another cup of water if you think there should be more liquid in the pot. Stir together, and bring back to a simmer. Add salt, cover and simmer 30 minutes to an hour until the chickpeas are thoroughly tender and the broth fragrant.
4. Stir in the chard greens and chopped fennel fronds. Simmer 10 to 15 minutes, until the greens are very tender and fragrant. Remove from the heat. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding salt, garlic or harissa as desired.
5. Reconstitute and steam the couscous. Serve in wide bowls, top with the stew and serve.
Yield: Serves four generously.
Advance preparation: The dish can be made through step 4 up to three days ahead and refrigerated. Bring back to a simmer, and proceed as directed. The couscous can be reconstituted up to a day ahead, then steamed before serving. The stew keeps well in the refrigerator for three or four days.
Nutritional information per serving: 549 calories; 11 grams fat; 1 gram saturated fat; 0 milligrams cholesterol; 95 grams carbohydrates; 18 grams dietary fiber; 153 milligrams sodium (does not include salt added during cooking); 21 grams protein
Martha Rose Shulman can be reached at martha-rose-shulman.com.
Two weeks remain in the harvest season after this week, and we plan to harvest a lot of greens, plus loads of green tomatoes & green peppers. And... sweet potatoes! We harvested sweet potatoes last week, and will give them out beginning next week! It looks like everyone should get from 5-10 lbs. of sweet potatoes (whether Half or Full Share). Janaki has prepared them already in a few ways and they taste wonderful!
In addition to harvesting, there is still some weeding to do. But, mostly, this is when we begin to jump fully into planning for the next year. Believe it or not, there are only 3 1/2 months until the first seeds are sown next year, and there is a LOT to do in the meantime. In fact, there is not much of 'off-season', since we spend most of the winter months solving as many problems as we can, purchasing all materials, seeds, etc., & setting out all plans & changes for the CSA and other markets. Managing a farm organically is a full-time, 12-month job, as it's essential to be fully prepared in every way. So... no time to waste!
We hope you enjoy the share this week, and will keep'em coming!
All the best,
Kris, Stacey, and everyone at Riverbend Roots!
Go to October 16, 2011
Go to October 30, 2011
Return to Member Page