Tuesday, July 3, 2012

CSA Week 4

2 Heads Lettuce
1 Bunch Kale
1 Bunch Chard
Purple Kohlrabi
Summer Squash
Garlic Scapes

Farm, farm, farm.  Veggies, bugs, hot, hot sun.  Farm, farm, farm.  
The news of the week is not the fact that our field is getting absolutely packed with food, food and more food, or the fact that our days are long, hot and action packed.  Every thing has been a bit of a blur, as a key member of the Black Kettle family went through a major ordeal from adventure to trauma to ultimate victory and now recovery.  One week ago, last Tuesday evening, dear friend, Kettle defender and spiritual leader Steve, the once barn cat turned extremely important companion, ate some kibble, sat next to me and purred and darted out the door, as per usual, to work on after hours projects, prowl the farm under the stars, asses all that needs assessment, inventory the spirits, and hopefully eat a mouse or two.  Our typical morning ritual consists of him waiting for me outside in the window box by the kitchen.  I let him in, he chows kibble, takes a few laps around the kitchen, works out the residual excitement of his evening’s antics, gives his cosmic thumb a good licking, listens to be a bit of NPR with me and crashes out for the remainder of the day, whilst I toil in the field and do my best to assist the veggies and feed the likes of you all.  That’s how Steve and I roll, we both have a lot going on.

Anyway, to make a long, long story, ever so slightly less long, Steve never showed up last Wednesday.  And then never showed up on Thursday.  And Friday.  Every one said that cats do this, they go on walkabouts, especially in the summer and they eventually get it out of their system and come on back.  I released Steve to the universe and blessed him on his journey and decided that he was on a big, huge and very important adventure and he would in fact come on home.  My heart was heavy and the farm missed his presence.  It just wasn’t as fun, nor did the place feel complete without him.  Even the pigs seemed to be vibrating on a lower frequency.  It was tough.  
Friday evening rolled around, the work day over, the hardworking crew clocked out, veggies harvested and the van packed for market, I finished up a quick project in the field, returned to the barn and laying by the door to the house was none other then STEVE!!!!!!  Three nights away, and there he was, but also there he wasn’t.  We will never know what happened.  Was he hit by a car?  Did he fall from a huge height? Was he in a fight with an evil gremlin warlock who was threatening the farm???  All that matters is that he got himself home, we got himself to me and I got him to safety and treatment.  Either he dragged himself to the barn, or he caught a ride on the back of an unicorn angel, he was a mess and his hind end was not working.  It was another three nights away, this time in the ER in Scarborough, which is both a wonderful place and the saddest place I have ever been.  The worst case scenario did not prove to be the actual case.  Our boy is very badly banged up, broken in a few places, sad, tired, shaved here and there, but home quiet and healing with all his limbs and organs intact.  
So it goes as a rugged farm cat.  Yet another reason to give thanks, put June behind us and rock on into July!  The farm lives in deep gratitude for all it’s community members from neighbors to veggie eaters to Mean Kitty, who sporadically lurks and eats food in the barn, to the good bacteria in the soil, to the whacky, whacky pigs.  We are all key collaborators.  With that in mind, on this day of Inter-Dependence, let’s acknowledge our amazing and glorious community and give our collective support and healing love to the number one feline inter-planetary superstar S-T-E-V-E!!!  steve!  Steve!  STEEEEEEVE!

Kohlrabi Home Fries


New York Times, March 6, 2012

1 large bulb kohlrabi
1 tablespoon rice flour, chickpea flour or semolina (more as needed)
Salt to taste
2 to 4 tablespoons canola oil or grapeseed oil, as needed
Chili powder, ground cumin, curry powder or paprika to taste
Peel the kohlrabi and cut into thick sticks, about 1/3 to 1/2 inch wide and about 2 inches long.
Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a heavy skillet (cast iron is good). Meanwhile, place the flour in a large bowl, season with salt if desired and quickly toss the kohlrabi sticks in the flour so that they are lightly coated.
When the oil is rippling, carefully add the kohlrabi to the pan in batches so that the pan isn’t crowded. Cook on one side until browned, about 2 to 3 minutes. Then, using tongs, turn the pieces over to brown on the other side for another 2 to 3 minutes. The procedure should take only about 5 minutes if there is enough oil in the pan. Drain on paper towels, then sprinkle right away with the seasoning of your choice. Serve hot.
Sautee some greens with garlic scapes, fry an egg, fire up these homefries and fancy brunch is served!
Marinated Kohlrabi Salad
1 lb. kohlrabi, washed and sliced
1/4 red onion, sliced
1/2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. fresh lime juice
1/4 tsp. Kosher salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 1/2 Tbsp. capers, drained and chopped
2 cups leaf or Bibb lettuce
Rinse red onion in a strainer and pat dry with a paper towel. Place sliced kohlrabi and sliced red onion in a large bowl.  Add the lemon juice, lime juice, salt, and pepper.  Stir to combine and set aside for 10 minutes.
Stir in the olive oil and capers.  Add the lettuce and toss to combine.  Season again with salt and pepper.
Still not sure what to do with your Kohlrabi this week??  
Do like the BKF crew, eat it raw, down the hatch, just like an apple, OR shred it right on top of your delicious salad OR cube it up and add it to your yummy garlic scape, greens and summer squash veggie sautee.  
Nothin’ says CSA believer/local food hardcore like a truly dedicated Kohlrabi Lover!  Go there BKFers!  The good ol’ cabbge turnip is the best!

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