Fall CSA Box #2 11-2-10
In this weeks box:
Bulk carrots Cauliflower
Beets Yellow Finn potatoes
Rutabaga Delicata Squash
Red Romaine Lettuce Hungarian Carrot Chili Pepper (hot!!!)
Welcome to all our newly joined Fall CSA members this week! I am truly amazed and appreciative of the interest we have had this year for the Fall CSA. I hope everyone will enjoy what the season has to offer, as there are still plenty of delicious things to eat in the barns, greenhouses and fields around Wobbly Cart.
This week we said good-bye to the majority of the crew…and said hello to the wind and rain! What was a crew of 8 during the summer has now become 2. Believe me it is no pick-nick for Joe and Lauren to head out into the mud puddles alone and harvest for CSA. Everything just goes a little slower when complicated by muddy sticky soil. Trucks get stuck in the deep wet soil, tools disappear easily, rain-gear gets sodden and weighs you down. The impassable roads often means the crew must lug boxes by hand to the waiting truck, and then standing around in even more water to wash and pack the produce. These guys really deserve our appreciation!
All the hard work has brought us some delicious rewards, however. One vegetable that may or may not be new to you is the rutabaga. This lovely purple and yellow root vegetable is thought to have a Scandinavian or Russian origin and to be the product of a cross between and cabbage and a turnip. Rutabagas are amazingly hardy and effortlessly withstand weather that even kale cannot take. I imagine that’s why they originated in some of the most freezing places on earth. I also imagine they have helped get a lot of people and animals through some very tough times in history. They are best eaten when roasted or boiled until tender, and then mashed with butter or pureed into a soup. Often, they are paired with carrots or other root vegetables like potatoes. Rutabagas are rich in Fiber, Vitamin C, Thiamin and Potassium, and they are delicious if you give them a try.
You also get to try Delicata squash. These long yellow and green striped squash are widely regarded among the best of the winter squash. They are my favorite too. Slice them in half and scoop out the seeds, then place face down in a baking pan with ¼ inch of water and bake at 350 degrees until tender. This is one squash that has so much flavor that it is great without butter and sugar added.
The last item I have room to mention is the Hungarian Carrot Chili. This medium- long , bright orange, pepper is really pretty to look at and very hot to taste. They are not at the very top of the heat index, but I have found that you should be careful with them! If you love hot foods then go to town. I even made a batch of home-canned Belizean style hot sauce with these!! Yummy.
For more info on the veggies and more recipes to try I always post our latest newsletters and recipes along with a photo of the CSA box contents on our blog, wobblycart.wordpress.com
Fall CSA Recipe Page #2 11-2-10
French Braised Carrots and Rutabaga
In a large heavy saucepan place 1 lb peeled and sliced carrots, and 1 lb peeled and sliced rutabagas with 2 cups chicken stock, 2 tsp sugar, 2 Tbsp butter, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook them, partially covered, over medium heat they are tender, about 20 minutes. Check the seasoning. Sprinkle with chopped fresh chives and serve in a warmed serving dish.
2 cups peeled, diced and cooked potatoes
2 cups peeled, diced and cooked carrots
1 cup peeled and diced tart apples
1 cup minced dill pickles
1/3 cup minced onion
2 cups cooked, peeled and diced beets
1 cup sour cream
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice or cider vinegar
dash of salt, sugar and freshly ground black pepper
Mix the diced potatoes, carrots, apple, pickles, and onion in a large serving bowl. Chill. Combine all the dressing ingredients and chill. Add the beets to the other vegetables just before serving so the salad will be the proper light pink color. Serve the dressing in a small serving bowl or fold it into the salad. Decorate with sliced hard-boiled egg if you wish.
From the Sundays at the Moosewood Restaurant Cookbook
Chinese Style Chard and Leek Soup
Heat a wok or large heavy soup pot on high heat for 30 seconds and then add 1 ½ tbsp peanut oil. Swirl the oil to coat the pan and add to it 2 minced garlic cloves, 2 large leeks that have been well rinsed and sliced, and 1 medium carrot that has been cut into match sticks. Lower the heat to a simmer and cook, covered, for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover the wok, increase the heat to high, and add 1 bunch of chopped chard leaves and ½ cup canned water chestnuts. Stir-fry for 2 minutes until the greens are wilted. Lower the heat to medium. Add 6 cups of flavorful vegetable or chicken stock, 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbsp rice vinegar, and salt and black pepper to taste. Heat through but do not boil. Serve immediately; garnish with strips of seasoned tofu if desired.
Adapted from the Sundays at the Moosewood Restaurant Cookbook.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut 2 leeks in half the long way leaving most of the greens and clean them thoroughly under running water. Slice the leeks lengthwise into long thin strips. Not rounds. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet and fry the leeks for 5 minutes over medium high heat, stirring frequently. Transfer the leeks to a baking pan, spread them out and bake for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes until done. Watch them closely so they don’t burn, but they should get very crispy. Sprinkle them with salt and let cool. Serve crumbled on a soup or salad.