Wobbly Cart Farm Fall CSA box #3
Large Shares: Carrots, Yellow Finn potatoes, Sunchokes, Parsnips, Cipolinni Onions, Garlic, Italian Parsley, Rosemary, Chicory Variegata di Castelfranco, Butternut Squash, Watermelon radishes
Small Shares: Carrots, Sunchokes, Parsnips, Cipolinni Onion, Italian Parsley, Butternut Squash, Watermelon radishes
Dear CSA members,
The year is rapidly drawing to a close, just as our hours of daylight quickly diminish. The dark days are here, yet many hardy crops continue to put on slow growth, getting their chance to shine as the more flashy crops of summer wither and die away. A walk through the fields reveals kale, Asian greens, cabbage, root vegetables of all kinds, chicory and escarole all in their prime and glowing in the subtle light and misty air. In the warmth of the barns and buildings stockpiles of potatoes, winter squash, onions and garlic give a warm satisfaction of provisions laid in for winter.
This is the time of year to enjoy that warmth of family, friends, and the gifts we have been given. To open up the cans of vegetables, pickles and fruits preserved throughout the summer and share them. To make a fire on a cold and blustery day and sit back in contentment. I hope you enjoy this week’s box.
Asha, Joe and the Crew at Wobbly Cart
Butternut squash: this large yellow bell shaped squash has a sweet and slightly nutty flavor. When ripe the flesh is deep orange in color. Butternut squash is best eaten roasted, grilled, or mashed to make soups, or desserts like pies and muffins. To roast: cut it in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds (reserve them to roast with tamari if desired) place cut side down on a oiled baking sheet, and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until softened. Once cooked the flesh can be used in a variety of ways or just eaten as is with butter and brown sugar!
Sunchokes aka. Jerusalem Artichokes: Sunchokes look like small, knobbly potatoes but crunchier, sweeter and do have a slight taste of artichoke. They practically contain no starch, but plenty of inulin (not insulin), which becomes fructose when spuds are stored in the ground or refrigerated. The humble sunchoke is considered gourmet fare by many. Raw, it’s an excellent substitute for water chestnuts in hot and spicy stir fries, or cooked in cream soups, broiled with sweet potatoes, or simply scrubbed and baked. Store them in an open plastic bag in the refrigerator crisper.
Cicoria Variegata di Castelfranco: This member of the Chicory family (related to escarole, endive and radicchio) is a hardy and gorgeous winter green. Best used in salads or quickly grilled whole it has a bitter flavor that goes well with sweeter vinaigrettes or paired with sweet root vegetables such as beets and parsnips.
Watermelon Radishes: this type of daikon radish originates in China where it is called shinrimei. From the outside it looks a lot like a turnip, but when sliced the inside reveal a beautiful pink color. Can be served raw or cooked, but will loose the gorgeous color if cooked. I prefer it as a quick pickle or grated into salads.
Simple Sunchokes: wash and peel 1 ½ lbs sunchokes. Drop them into a saucepan on boiling water to which you have added 1 tsp mild vinegar. Cook, covered, unitl just tender. Test with a fork after 15 minutes. Drain. Meanwhile melf 2 to 3 tbsp butter, add 2 tbsp chopped parsley and 2 drops hot pepper sauce. Pour over the artichokes and serve.
Simple seared fillet of beet with winter leaves: refresh 5 to 6 large handfuls of cicoria varigata di castelfranco, escarole, or raddichio in cold water then dry. For the marinade combine 1 ¼ cups soy sauce, 1 red chili, 3 chopped cloves of garlic, and ½ cup olive oil. Marinade 1 3lb fillet of beef overnight, or at least for several hours turning occasionally. Preheat oven to 425. Sear the beef until brown on each side in a griddle of frying pan, then roast for 15 to 20 minutes or until desired doneness. Prepare a dressing of 6 tbsp soy sauce, 6 tbsp olive oil, 1 chopped clove garlic, 1 red chili, and 1 tbsp freshly grated ginger. Thinly slice the fillet and arrange it on a bed of greens, drizzle with the dressing and sprinkle with chopped fresh cilantro.
Grilled Chicory: heat grill to high heat. Slice your chicory vertically, and discard any bruised leaves. Brush the greens with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with good sea salt and fresh ground pepper. Turn grill down to med-low. Place the greens on the grill and cook turning every 1 to 2 minutes until the leaves turn a rich crusty brown on both sides. 5 to 10 minutes. Cut the greens into 4 to 6 servings and serve warm or at room temperature with additional vinaigrette.
Garlic Roasted Root vegetables: Split 1 lb carrots in half lengthwise. Quarter 1 lb of peeled parsnips lengthwise. In a Dutch oven bring salted water to boiling. Add carrots and parsnips and simmer for 5 minutes; drain. In a very large skillet heat 1 tbsp vegetable oil over medium heat. Add 3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced and cook until fragrant and beginning to brown. Add carrots, parsnips, and 8 oz mini cipollini onions, peeled to skillet. Cook and stir for 5 minutes or until coated in oil and beginning to soften. Sprinkle with salt and ground black pepper. Roast for 30 minutes covered with foil at 350 degrees.
Maple-Braised Butternut Squash with Fresh Thyme: Melt 6 tbsp butter in a heavy large deep skillet over high heat. Add 1 3 to 3 1/2 lb butternut squash, halved lengthwise, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1 inch cubes, sauté 1 minute. Add 1 ¼ cups low-salt chicken broth, 1/3 cup pure maple syrup. 1 tbsp minced fresh thyme, 1 tsp coarse sea salt, and ¼ tsp black pepper. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer, to cook squash until almost tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer squash to a large bowl. Boil liquid in skillet until thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Return squash to skillet. Cook until tender, turning occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with more pepper, if desired. (From Bon appétit.)