Tuesday, June 12, 2012

CSA 2012 Harvest Season Kick Off!

Week 1
June 12th and 13th
1 bunch kale
2 heads lettuce
1 bag arugula
1 bunch scallions
1 bunch bok choi
green garlic
1 bunch herbs
1 plant of your own!
It’s a wonderful, witchy day at Black Kettle Farm and we are hustling right, left and center.  It is the first big harvest day of the year, with hungry CSA members to feed and stylish restaurants to deliver to, kale bunching skills to be refined and lettuce fluffing methods to be perfected.  If that were not enough to get us a bit wound, there is some major, major electricity in the air.  The sun blazing and the wind swirling, plants are standing up on tippy toes, having cranked up their colors to psychedelic levels.  No doubt the universe is completely validating that IT IS ON.  It is an exciting time at the farm as the field starts to fill, the veggies start to flourish and the crew develops the rhythm of planting, weeding and now harvesting.   The pigs are settling into their routine of sleeping, scampering through the clover, putting their entire bodies in their grain bowls and every now and again collectively snorting, freaking out and running in a herd some where with great importance.  All is well at the Kettle.
In other news.....Way to go!  You are a CSA member, who loves local food, so it is time to eat like one.  Here are some tips on navigating through your share in the early season when it’s greens, greens, glorious greens.
Get to know fresh ginger, spruce up your spice rack and have a variety of vinegars on hand.  With ginger, grate it, sauté it with green garlic and add any green that you have, take it to easy Asian style levels by adding tamari, apple cider vinegar and red pepper flakes. As for vinegars, I love balsamic and white wine for salad dressings and apple cider to throw in with absolutely every thing that I sauté.  Although not local, fresh lemons to squeeze come in super handy.
Cook if you want to, but bok choi it is also great raw!  Just cut off the end and chop it all, including the stalks, it will beef up your lettuce based salad, and add new flavors and colors.  Cooked beans and any kind of seed always take a salad higher, go with black or pinto beans, sunflower or pumpkin seeds.
All greens, be it kale, collards, arugula, bok choi, you name it, they are all  so good with eggs!  For real, greens and eggs makes you big and strong.  Warm up some oil in a pan, throw in some garlic, chop said green, let it wilt and add your eggs.  Scramble to perfection.  So good and will keep your motor running.
Pesto is not just for basil any more!  Use kale or collards and it’s just as good and has way more nutritional value.  Double win!
Kettle goodness all around!  Here we go friends!  Can’t wait for recipe sharing, baby bouncing, tales of weather woes, whacky pick up antics and all the rest that links us every week from now until October.  BKF CSA hoot, hoot!


2 cups cooked bulgur  (any grain will do, try   quinoa, couscous or millet)

1 bunch Flat-leafed parsley, chopped finely
1 bunch scallions, finely chopped 
Lemon juice -- 1/2 cup
Salt and pepper -- to taste
Olive oil -- 1/4 - 1/2 cup
Cook bulgur and let cool.  Add the parsley, scallions, lemon juice, salt and pepper and stir together. Set aside for 15 to 20 minutes to allow flavors to mingle.
Adjust seasoning and stir in the olive oil. Serve chilled or at room temperature on a bed of lettuce.
Sautéed Bok Choi with Garlic and Ginger
1 bunch bok choi
1 1/2 tablespoons canola, vegetable or peanut oil
1-2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
3 tablespoons broth or water (or 2 tablespoons broth/water + 1 tablespoon wine)
salt to taste
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
red pepper flakes (optional)
Chop bok choi, leaves, white stems and all. Finely mince garlic and grate fresh ginger.Heat cooking oil. Add the garlic and ginger. Turn the heat to medium-high. Let the ginger and garlic gently sizzle in the oil. Add red pepper flakes.  When the aromatics become fragrant and light golden brown, add the bok choi leaves. Toss very well to coat each leaf with the garlicky, gingery oil for 15 seconds. Pour in broth, water or wine. Immediately cover and let cook for 1 minute. Season with salt and drizzle a bit of sesame oil on top.  Serve with rice or soba noodles.
Green Goddess Salad Dressing
1 garlic clove
1 cup packed avocado flesh (2 small)
7-8 tbsp water
5 tbsp apple cider vinegar
3-4 tbsp fresh lemon juice, to taste
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup packed fresh parsley
1/2 cup scallions
1 tsp kosher salt, or to taste
Pinch of cayenne (optional)
Sweetener, to taste (honey, agave, maple syrup)
1. Add garlic clove to food processor and process until finely chopped.
2. Add in the water, oil, avocado, parsley & scallions. Process until smooth.  Add in the lemon juice and apple cider vinegar slowly stopping to taste. If need be, slowly add small amounts of water for a smooth consistency and/or to balance the flavors.  Finally add in the sweetener to taste and sprinkle with salt.  Blend until smooth.  Dressing will keep in a jar in the fridge for a week.
Author’s Note: This dressing has a tangy kick to it from the vinegar and lemon juice. If you aren’t a fan of a strong tangy flavor, decrease the amounts used.

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