Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 18

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10-24-17

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 18

Large shares: Acorn squash, red cipollini onions, winter kale, rapini, rosemary, fingerling potatoes, carrots, parsnips, sweet peppers, jalapenos   

Small shares: Acorn squash, red cipollini onions, winter kale, rapini, beets, parsnips, sweet peppers, jalapeno   

Greens share: baby lettuce, rainbow lacinato kale, Italian parsley   

Roots share: shallots, carrots, daikon radish   

Juicing share: carrot seconds, beet seconds, apples, lacinato rainbow kale, cilantro, rapini     

Dear CSA members,

Well, we have come through an intensely rainy and windy week and back into the gorgeous fall blue skies and sun. Our fall colors seem to be at their peak in the trees, cover crops are coming up and looking very green, salmon are running again and so it is a very beautiful time out here on the farm.

I think we got over 5 inches of rain over the last seven days here, and our Chehalis river is looking completely different than it did two weeks ago! This time of year we have to start watching the hydrologic forecast to be sure to be aware and ahead of any flooding that may be eminent. Often times in this valley we are disrupted by flooded roads and blocked access to some of our fields and our beautiful rivers and wetlands do their thing throughout the winter. Its something we have learned to live by and around.

I really can’t believe that the sweet peppers and jalapenos in the high tunnel are still doing so well and even came through a solid week of frozen nights! We have an abundance of them right now and so I wanted to make sure you got a good share. I expect you may see more peppers before the CSA is over!

This is the last week for one of our farm hands Trevor, who hails from Maine, and has been with us for just over a year. We had a really fun crew party last Saturday to celebrate and hit the bowling alley for some fun, beer and pizza. We all work really hard all summer and its nice to finally have some time and energy to relax and have a good time together!

New crops for you this week:

Acorn squash: this winter squash is a very familiar one to most of us. Acorn squash has a sweet, nutty flavor and is excellent baked, sautéed, or steamed. Acorn squash is also delicious made into soups. The seeds can be cleaned and roasted and make a tasty and nutritious snack. This and all the other squash will keep for quite some time in a cool dry place – in fact flavor will improve over time!

Rapini is essentially the Italian equivalent to turnip greens. Used extensively in Italian and Chinese cooking, it is not as popular in the United States but is gaining popularity. The stems are generally uniform in size (hence cook evenly) and need not be peeled. Clean it as you would other greens, removing the bottom portion of the stems, which appear tough (sometimes the stems are tougher than other times depending on the age of the rapini). They stems can be removed up to where the leaves begin, and sautéed before adding the leaves to the pan. This vegetable is a source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as potassium.  To maintain crispness, refrigerate, unwashed, loosely wrapped in a plastic bag or wrap for up to 3 days.

Parsnips: parsnips are a root vegetable member of the carrot and parsley family that has been eaten in Europe for centuries. These sweet white roots are excellent served mashed, baked, boiled, roasted, made into fries, and cooked into soups and stews. You can store them in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator for quite some time to come if desired. We plant parsnips very early in the spring in order to have them ready for harvest when the cold weather sets in as they sweeten up with the cold and frosty weather.

Winter kale: This variety is the hardiest of kales, with finely curled, thick blue green leaves. Here are some great tips for success with kale. https://food-hacks.wonderhowto.com/how-to/tricks-making-delicious-tender-kale-salads-every-time-0157621/  

Have a great week,

Asha

Lentil and Vegetable Stew with Kale: Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large pot over high heat. Add 1 large chopped onion, and 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped, 1 medium celery root, peeled and chopped, and 1 medium rutabaga, peeled and chopped; sprinkle with salt and pepper and sauté until beginning to soften and brown, 10 to 11 minutes. Stir in 1 lb brown lentils, rinsed and 1 Tbsp herbes de Provence. Add 8 cups vegetable broth and 1 large bunch kale, ribs removed and leaves coarsely chopped. Bring to a boil, stirring to incorporate Kale. Reduce heat to med-low, cover with lid slightly ajar, and simmer until lentils are tender, about 20 minutes. Add more broth to thin, if desired. Season with salt and pepper. (From the March 2011 issue of Bon Appétit magazine).

Maple-Braised Acorn 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 Acorn 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.)

Fusilli with Rapini, Garlic and Tomato Wine sauce: Fill a sauce pan with enough water to cover 1 bunch of Rapini that has been trimmed and cut into 1 inch peices. Sprinkle in some salt and bring the salted water to a boil, and add Rapini, cook until bright green and just starting to becoem tender, about 2 minutes. Drain and cool in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain well. Fill a pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling , stir in 1/2 cup uncooked fusilli pasta. Cook the pasta, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the pasta has cooked through but is still firm, about 12 minutes. Drain well. While the pasta is cooking heat 3 tbsp olive oil in a sauce pan over medium heat. Add 2 chopped cloves of garlic and cook and stir the garlic for about 2 minutes, sprinkle with salt and black pepper, and stir in 1 spring fresh rosemary, 1/2 tsp dried Italian herb mix, and 1/4 tsp crushes red pepper flakes. Stir in the blanched Rapini, 1/4 cup white wine, 1 can diced tomatoes; remove the rosemary sprig, and bring the mixture to a boil. Mix in the cooked pasta, 2 sliced green onions, 1 minced clove of garlic; simmer for 1 minute. Remove from heat and top with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.

Parsnip Puree: cover 2 c. peeled and chopped parsnips with water in a medium pot. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook until very tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Drain and place in a food processor with ¼ cup milk, 1 tbsp butter and salt and black pepper to taste. Puree until smooth.

Baked acorn squash with brown sugar and butter: Preheat oven to 400. Cut 1 acorn squash in half and scoop out seeds and stringy pulp. Mix together 2 tbsp brown sugar, 2 tbsp softened butter, 2 tbsp maple syrup, and salt and pepper to taste. Rub the inside of the squash with this mixture. Place the squash cut side up on a baking sheet and bake the squash for about 1 hour or until tender when pierced with a fork.

Winter Squash Shepherd’s Pie: Preheat oven to 400 with rack in top third of oven. Put 2 ½ lbs cubed, peeled winter squash on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast squash, covered, until tender when pierced with a fork, 20 to 25 minutes. Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large, wide pot over high heat. Add 2 lbs lamb stew meat, cut into bite-sized pieces, 1 tsp salt, and ½ tsp pepper. Cook, stirring as needed, until meat is browned on all sides. Add 1 medium onion, cut into wedges, and 3 chopped garlic cloves and cook until vegetables are starting to soften, about 2 minutes, transfer lamb mixture with juices to a bowl; add 4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into ½ inch chunks and 8 oz medium mushrooms, stems removed. Reduce heat to medium low. Add ¼ cup flour to the same pot and cook, whisking continuously, until flour smells toasted, about 1 minute. Pour in ½ cup red wine and 1 cup beef or chicken broth and simmer, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 4 minutes. Pour over the lamb mixture and stir to combine. Spoon the mixture into 6 individual ramekins. Mash the squash in a bowl with 1 tsp salt, and 1/3 cup cream, adding more cream if needed until mixture is consistency of mashed potatoes. Dollop over the lamb. Bake until browned and sauce is bubbling, about 30 minutes. Let sit 10 minutes; sprinkle with 2 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley. Serves 6. (from Sunset October 2012)

Roasted Winter Squash and Beet salad: Preheat oven to 400. Tightly wrap 1 lb small beets in aluminum foil bundles. Place on middle shelf of oven. Roast 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until tender when tested with a sharp knife. Remove from oven; cool slightly. Peel beets and set aside. Place the slices of 1 ¼ lb of winter squash on a rimmed baking sheet. Toss with salt, pepper, and 1 tbsp olive oil. Place on middle shelf in oven; roast 15 minutes. Drizzle 1/3 cup maple syrup over the squash, and roast another 10 minutes, or until tender; cool. To make the dressing: in a small bowl whisk 1 tsp Dijon mustard, ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, and ¼ cup maple syrup together. Add 1/3 cup olive oil and whisk until smooth. Season to taste. To assemble, place 3 cups mixed salad greens in the middle of a large plate. Arrange beets and squash on the greens. Pour half of dressing over salad. Sprinkle with 1/3 cup fresh pomegranate seeds. Pass remaining dressing. Serves 6 to 8.

Easy Rapini: wash and chop 1 large bunch rapini greens (discard stems). Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large dutch oven. Add 1 chopped shallot, 1 clove chopped garlic, and 1 tsp chopped cayenne pepper (or to taste) and sautee until tender. Add the washed and chopped turnip greens and cook down for 3 minutes. Season with pepper. Mix together 1 cup chicken stock and 2 tbsp Dijon mustard. Add to the turnip greens and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add 1/3 cup toasted pecans and serve immediately.

Grilled pepper and herb relish: heat a grill to medium-high ( 400 to 450 degrees). Grill 1 ½ lbs sweet frying peppers, covered and turning occasionally, until softened and lightly charred. 7 to 12 minutes then transfer to a medium bowl as done. Let stand until cool enough to handle. Pull off pepper skins that come off easily ( no need to remove all of them), pull off stems, and swipe out seeds with your hand, working in a strainer over a bowl to catch juices. Finely chop peppers, then return to bowl with juices. Stir in ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, 1 tbsp wine vinegar, and 2 tbsp coarsely chopped fresh marjoram, oregano or basil leaves. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.  (from Sunset September 2017 issue)

Pepper, cucumber, and chickpea salad: toast 2 tsp ground cumin in a small frying pan over medium high heat, stirring often, until fragrant, about 2 min. Pour from pan and into a large bowl. Stir in ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, zest of one large lemon, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tsp each minced garlic and kosher salt and ½ tsp black pepper. Seed 1 lb sweet peppers and cut into 1 inch pieces. Slice 1 large thin skinned cucumber into ¼ inch rounds and cut in half again if large. Add peppers, cucumber, and 1 can chickpeas that has been rinsed and drained to the salad and toss to blend well. Let stand about 1 hour, then stir in 1 cup loosely packed chopped Italian parsley.  (from Sunset September 2017 issue)

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Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 17

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10-17-17

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 17

Large shares: Kabocha squash, carrots, yellow Finn potatoes, celeriac, red cipollini onions, chard, beets, mizuna, garlic, cilantro  

Small shares: Kabocha squash, yellow Finn potatoes, celeriac, watermelon radishes, chard, cilantro, red cipollini onions  

Greens share: green cabbage, escarole, yukina savoy  

Roots share: parsnips, black radishes, turnips

Juicing share: Green cabbage, carrots, beets, cilantro, chard

 

Dear CSA members,

The last week has brought us freezing nights, even down into the high 20’s here. With today’s’ rain and wind I’m starting to feel like were getting deep into the fall season. I am truly amazed that my high tunnel tomatoes and peppers actually survived to see another week!

We are starting to harvest many of our fall root crops that are beautiful and at their best during the fall. Parsnips, many types of hardy radishes, parsley root, sun chokes and much more. Things get difficult to dig out in the field once the ground becomes saturated. The soil becomes mud and sticks to everything, not to mention difficulty moving around while carrying heavy crates, and eventually even the trucks get stuck in the deep mud. At that point we transition to using the 4×4 tractor and a trailer to haul stuff out of the field. Our crew gets even more props for working so hard out there as conditions become less pleasant!

We are at the beginning of another farm improvement project down at our big barn. Joseph and the crew are starting to build a new insulated room for us to store root crops and potatoes for the winter. It’s going to be great to have a place to stash them for when the weather gets really cold. If we ever get down into the teens for any amount of time our ground will freeze and we will lose those crops. This time of year and into the winter is really the only time that we can get any infrastructure improvements done! The summer is just too slammed with planting and harvest!

This really is a fitting box this week for the fall vibes that are going on, and there are quite a few new crops.

Celeriac: the large and unusual knobby root with celery-like tops is celeriac. When the root is scrubbed and peeled, inside is a firm ivory flesh. The celeriac roots is very low in starch and is a nice alternative to potatoes and other starchier root vegetables. It tastes like a subtle blend of celery and parsley. You can use it in soups, grated into salads, roasted in a pan of other root vegetables, or even French fried instead of potatoes. Stores well in the crisper drawer for several weeks with the tops removed.

Kabocha Squash: A deep green skin, squat shaped squash with an intense yellow-orange color on the inside. The meat is sweeter than a butternut squash and fairly dry, good for making sauces and soups with. Before eating make sure the stem is very corky and dry which shows maturity. The squash itself will keep for many weeks if kept on the counter and dry. I think these are very beautiful and make a nice decoration in the kitchen.

Mizuna is a Japanese green that has a mild earthy, peppery taste. It is very tender and makes excellent salads and stir-fries. It will keep for 3 to 4 days loosely wrapped in plastic and stored in the crisper drawer of your fridge.

Yukina Savoy: An Asian green that looks a bit like spinach, but tastes like a mild mustard. It is pretty, and easy to grow, cold tolerant, nutritious, and great steamed or in stir-fries.

Black radish: This is the first year we have tried to grow black radishes. I think they are very cool looking with their textured black skin in contrast to the pretty white insides. Its flesh is crisp, white and slightly bitter and offers a hot radishy bite. The skin of the Black radish is particularly piquant, for a milder radish flavor peel Black radishes prior to serving. Black radishes can be enjoyed raw or cooked in a variety of different preparations. Sauté and braise to be served as a vegetable side dish. Cook like a turnip and smother in cream or butter. Dice and add to soups, stir-fries and stews to add a radishy bite. Grate or chop into matchstick size and add to mixed green salads. Their size makes them ideal as an hors d’oeuvre when sliced and served alongside an assortment of dips. Their flavor is enhanced by chervil, chives, sea salt and parsley. To tone down the heat of radishes slice, salt and rinse with water prior to using. To store, remove greens and wrap radishes in plastic. They will keep refrigerated for up to two weeks.

Turnips: Turnips are creamy-white with a lovely purple, red or greenish upper part where the taproot has been exposed to sunlight. Like swedes, turnips are a root vegetable and member of the cabbage family. They are a good source of vitamin C and, before the arrival of the potato, turnips were one of the main sources of sustenance for the English peasantry. These turnips are pretty mild, don’t necessarily need to be peeled and will keep for several weeks in the crisper drawer of the fridge. Great roasted in butter, boiled and mashed, braised or made into soups.

Now that we are at week 17, for those of you who haven’t signed up for the automatic payment plan now is a great time to check your balances and send in checks to take care of what remains. We have 5 weeks of CSA to go!

Have a great week,   Asha

Roasted Kabocha squash with pancetta and sage: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Halve and seed 1 4 lb kabocha squash. Roast squash cut side down, in an oiled roasting pan in the middle of the oven until tender, about 1 hour. When cool enough to handle scrape flesh from the skin. Heat 1-cup vegetable oil in a small deep saucepan until it registers 365 on a deep -fat thermometer. Fry 20 whole fresh sage leaves in 3 batches until crisp, 3 to 5 seconds. Transfer leaves with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Cool 1/4 lb sliced pancetta that has been coarsely chopped in a heavy 4-quart pot over moderate heat, stirring until browned. Transfer pancetta with slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Add 1 tbsp olive oil to pancetta fat remaining in pot, and then cook 1 large chopped onion, until softened. Stir in 2 minced cloves of garlic and 1 1/2 tbsp of chopped fresh sage and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add squash, 1 1/2 cups chicken broth, 3 1/2 cups water and simmer 20 minutes to blend flavors. Stir in 1 tbsp red wine vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Serve sprinkled with pancetta and fried sage leaves.

SWEET AND SPICY ROASTED KABOCHA SQUASH: 1/2 small to medium sized kabocha squash, 3 Tbs light brown, natural cane, plus a bit more for sprinkling, 1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper or hot chili powder, more or less to taste, 1/2 tsp ground cumin, 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg, 1/4 tsp salt, 1 Tbs soy sauce Oil for drizzling – pumpkin seed oil is preferred, or use toasted sesame oil, argan oil, or walnut oil.  Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet or two with silicon baking liner or parchment paper. De-seed and cut the squash into slices about 1/2 cm or 1/4 inch thick. (Use a sturdy knife for cutting squash or pumpkin, on a stable surface, and be careful!) Combine all the dry ingredients. Toss the squash slices in this until coated thoroughly. Add the soy sauce and toss well again. Spread the slices in a single layer on the baking sheet. Drizzle over them with the oil, and optionally sprinkle more sugar on them. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, then turn over, drizzle with more oil and sprinkle more sugar, and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Buttered Turnip Puree: peel and chop 3 large turnips. Combine with 1-quart milk, 3 fresh thyme sprigs, and 1 clove of smashed garlic in a saucepan. Simmer over medium heat until the turnips are tender. 20 to 30 minutes. Drain, discarding the thyme but reserving the liquid. In a food processor, puree the turnips with 1 stick butter and 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Season with salt and pepper and serve hot.

Celeriac and Apple Slaw: Trim, peel, and cut into 1-inch matchsticks, 1 12oz Celery root. Cut 1 large Johnagold apple into matchsticks (2 cups). Combine together with 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp fresh cider, 2 tsp sugar, 2 tsp Dijon mustard, and 2 tsp chopped fresh parsley. Let stand for 30 minutes before serving. Celeriac Mash: Peel and dice 3 ½ cups of celeriac. Cook celeriac in a large saucepan of boiling slated water for 15 minutes. Add 1 12 oz potato that has been peeled, and cut into 1 ½ inch chunks, and boil until celeriac and potato are very tender, about 15 minutes longer. Drain. Return to same saucepan; stir over medium-high heat until any excess liquid in pan evaporates, about 2 minutes. Add ¼ cup heavy cream and 2 Tbsp butter; mash until mixture is almost smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Braised Turnips: Cook in boiling water, uncovered, over high heat for about 6 minutes: 1 ½ lbs turnips. Peeled, left whole if small, quartered if large. Drain. Melt in a large, heavy skillet over high heat 3 tbsp butter. Add the turnips and cook, stirring, until coated with butter, about 5 minutes. Add 1-cup chicken stock, ½ tsp salt, and black pepper to taste. The stock should come to bout ¾ inch up the side of the turnips; add more stock or water if needed. Reduce the heat, cover the skillet, and simmer until the turnips are tender but still slightly resistant to the tip of a sharp knife, 10 to 20 minutes. Remove the turnips to a serving dish. Boil the cooking liquid over high heat until reduced to a thin, syrupy glaze. Pour it over the turnips and serve immediately.

Caramelized Onions: Heat 2 tbsp butter and 2 tbsp olive oil over med-high heat until the butter is melted. Add 3 lbs onions, thinly sliced. Sprinkle with 1 tsp salt. Cook stirring constantly, 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and brown, about 40 minutes. Add ½ cup dry white wine or water. Stir and scrape the pan to dissolve the browned bits. Remove from heat and season well with salt, black pepper and grated Parmesan cheese.

Mushroom, Chicory (Escarole), and Celery Root Salad: Preheat oven to 375. Wipe dirt from 1-½ lbs mixed wild and cultivated mushrooms such as Maitake, oyster, and chanterelles. Trim any tough ends, and cut mushrooms to make all pieces about the same size. Toss in a bowl with ¼ cup olive oil, ½ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp pepper. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake, stirring occasionally, until browned, 30 t 45 minutes. Let cool. Make dressing: sprinkle a peeled garlic clove with ¼ tsp salt, mince and then flatten with the side of a chef’s knife into a paste. Scrape paste into a jar with a tight-fitting lid and add 2 tsp whole grain mustard, 1 tsp honey, ½ tsp fresh thyme leaves, ¼ cup Champagne vinegar and ¼ cup olive oil. Cap jar and shake until emulsified. Peel 1 8 oz celery root, then cut into matchsticks, dropping them into a bowl of water to prevent darkening. Pat dry, then put in a large salad bowl and add 12 cups loosely packed escarole, endive and radicchio, leaves torn into bite sized pieces. Add mushrooms. Toss gently with dressing. (Also from Nov 2011 issue of Sunset)

Honey Balsamic Beet Salad: place 2 lbs trimmed and scrubbed baby beets in a baking pan. Combine ½ cup balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp honey, and 1 tbsp olive oil; pour over the beets. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover and bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes or until tender. On a platter combine ½ cups cooked quinoa, 2 cups watercress or arugula, and the beets and roasting juices. Top with chopped fresh tarragon. (From Better Homes and Gardens Magazine November 2012)

Potato-Swiss Chard Curry: Cut 3 medium, unpeeled purple potatoes, into 1-inch cubes, Put in a large pan, cover them with water and bring to the boil. Boil them for 4 to 6 minutes or until tender-crisp. Drain. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over med-high heat. Add 2 cloves chopped garlic and sauté for a minute. Add the cooked potatoes, 1 tbsp sugar, 1 tsp ground cumin, ½ tsp salt, and ¼ tsp cayenne pepper. Cook 2-3 minutes more. Stir in 3 cups chopped chard, and 1 lb diced tomatoes (canned is fine too). Reduce heat to med-low, cover and simmer for 4-6 minutes. Serve over rice.

Roasted Winter Squash and Beet salad: Preheat oven to 400. Tightly wrap 1 lb small beets in aluminum foil bundles. Place on middle shelf of oven. Roast 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until tender when tested with a sharp knife. Remove from oven; cool slightly. Peel beets and set aside. Place the slices of 1 ¼ lb of winter squash (delicata or kabocha) on a rimmed baking sheet. Toss with salt, pepper, and 1 tbsp olive oil. Place on middle shelf in oven; roast 15 minutes. Drizzle 1/3-cup maple syrup over the squash, and roast another 10 minutes, or until tender; cool. To make the dressing: in a small bowl whisk 1 tsp Dijon mustard, ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, and ¼ cup maple syrup together. Add 1/3-cup olive oil and whisk until smooth. Season to taste. To assemble, place 3 cups mixed salad greens in the middle of a large plate. Arrange beets and squash on the greens. Pour half of dressing over salad. Sprinkle with 1/3 cup fresh pomegranate seeds. Pass remaining dressing. Serves 6 to 8.

Yukina Savoy sauté: Heat 2 Tbsp sesame oil in a large skillet. Add 1 thinly sliced leek, white and light green part only, thoroughly washed, or 4 cloves chopped garlic, sauté for 2 to 3 minutes. Add in I bunch Yukina Savoy, de-stemmed and coarsely chopped. Sauté until just wilted. Remove from heat and add ½ Tbsp rice vinegar and 1 Tbsp Tamari. Season with black pepper and serve over rice.

Yukina Savoy with Sesame Ginger Dressing: Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add 2 heads of yukina savoy that have stems removed and leaves torn into pieces. Cook 1 minute. Remove immediately and plunge into ice water to stop cooking. Drain. Whisk together 4 tsp soy sauce 1 ½ tsp sesame oil, ¾ tsp minced fresh ginger, 1 Tbsp rice vinegar. Toss greens with the dressing and garnish with 1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds. (Both recipes from http://www.twoonionfarm.com).

Swiss chard with lentils and feta cheese: heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a medium saucepan. Add 2 cloves chopped garlic, and 2 red cipollini onions chopped. Sauté until tender. Add in 1-cup brown or green lentils and stir. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 30 min. meanwhile, wash 1 bunch of chard and trim off the stem ends. Chop the stems into ¼ inch pieces, and the leaves into bite-sized pieces. In another sauce pan, heat 1 tbsp olive oil, add the chard stems and salt and pepper to taste and sauté until tender, about 5 min. add the chard leaves and cook until wilted, about 2 min. stir in 4 tsp red wine vinegar and the reserved lentil mixture. Sprinkle with about ½ cup feta and more salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 14

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9-26-17

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 17

Large share: beets, carrots, cipollini onions, garlic, yellow finn potatoes, lettuce, radicchio, sweet peppers, sweet corn, rosemary, heirloom tomatoes, bell pepper

Small share: beets, carrots, cipollini onions, garlic, yellow finn potatoes, lettuce, bell pepper, rosemary, heirloom tomatoes

Greens share: lettuce, lacinato rainbow kale, chard

Roots share: parsnips, red carrots, shallots

Dear CSA members,

This is going to be a quick letter this week. Our big potato harvest is in full swing on this gorgeous fall day! Joseph is digging the rows with the potato digger attached to the tractor and the crew is out picking them up and bagging them. We will place them in temperature-controlled storage for the rest of the year so they won’t rot or start sprouting again. Last week we harvested all 6 tons of our winter squash and placed it in storage at our big barn!

This is likely to be our last round of heirloom tomatoes for the year. Large shares got sweet corn, and smalls should get it next week! New this week we have sweet peppers, cipollini onions, radicchio, and parsnips for the roots share

Radicchio: This hardy winter green is in the chicory family, it has a bitter taste that mellows with the onset of cold weather and also when you grill or roast it. Raddichio is an excellent addition to salads particularly when paired with cheese, fruits and toasted nuts. I liked this article from the New York Times  http://www.nytimes.com/1988/12/21/garden/radicchio-tasty-but-so-misunderstood.html?pagewanted=all

Cipollini onions:  Pronounced chip-oh-LEE-nee, this is a smaller, flat, pale onion. The flesh is a slight yellowish color and the skins are thin and papery. The color of the skin ranges from pale yellow to the light brown color of Spanish onions. These are sweeter onions, having more residual sugar than garden-variety white or yellow onions, but not as much as shallots.

The advantage to cipollinis is that they are small and flat and the shape lends them well to roasting. This combined with their sweetness makes for a lovely addition to recipes where you might want to use whole caramelized onions.

Parsnips: parsnips are a root vegetable member of the carrot and parsley family that has been eaten in Europe for centuries. These sweet white roots are excellent served mashed, baked, boiled, roasted, made into fries, and cooked into soups and stews. You can store them in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator for quite some time to come if desired. We plant parsnips very early in the spring in order to have them ready for harvest when the cold weather sets in as they sweeten up with the cold and frosty weather.

Have a great week,

Asha

Quick Pickled Beets: Combine 4 medium beets, scrubbed, trimmed, halved, and cut into ¼ inch slices. 1 small onion, peeled and thinly sliced. ¾ cup apple juice or water, ¼ cup apple cider vinegar, 1/8 tsp ground allspice, and a pinch of sea salt in a pressure cooker. Lock the lid into place and over high heat bring to high pressure. Lower the heat just enough to maintain high pressure and cook for 4 minutes. Reduce the heat by running cold water over the cooker in your sink. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to allow any excess steam to escape. To serve, lift the beets out of the liquid with a slotted spoon. Serve warm or chilled. (from Recipes from an Ecological Kitchen by Lorna Sass).

Grilled Radicchio: heat grill to high heat. Slice your radicchio 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.

Radicchio salad with pear, goat cheese and hazelnuts: In a large bowl whisk together ¼ cup olive oil, 3 tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 ½ tsp sugar and season with salt and pepper. Tear up about 1 pound radicchio into bite sized pieces, add 1/3 cup blanched and toasted hazelnuts (almond and walnuts would work too) chopped. Serve salad topped with 1-cup goat cheese and diced pear.

Parmesan Potato Gratin: preheat oven to 325. Brush the bottom of a 3 quart baking dish with 1 tbsp olive oil; set aside. Shave 4 cups parmesan cheese into thin strips; set aside. In a small bowl combine 4 slices of crisp cooked and crumbled bacon, 2 thinly sliced green onions, 2 tbsp snipped fresh chives. In the prepared baking dish place 2 lbs peeled and finely sliced potatoes. Sprinkle with ½ tsp each salt and freshly ground black pepper, half the bacon mixture and ½ tbsp snipped fresh rosemary and ½ tbsp snipped fresh thyme. Top with half the parmesan (2 cups). Dot with 2 tbsp unsalted butter. Repeat layers using 2 more lbs potatoes, and additional fresh herbs, and 2 additional tbsp butter. In a small bowl whisk together ¾ cup whole milk, ¾ cup heavy cream, and 3 tbsp all purpose flour; pour evenly over potatoes. Bake, covered, for 1 ½ hours. Increase temperature to 400. Bake, uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes more or until potatoes are tender and top is golden brown.

Pepper, Cucumber, and Chickpea salad: Toast 2 tsp cumin seeds in a small frying pan over medium-high heat, stirring often, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Pour from pan into a large bowl. Stir in ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, 1 tbsp lemon juice, zest from one large lemon, 1tsp minced garlic, 1 tsp kosher sea salt, and black pepper to taste. Seed 1 lb bell peppers and or sweet thin skinned frying peppers and cut into ¼ inch rounds. Slice 4oz of peeled cucumber into ¼ inch rounds and cut in half again if large. Add peppers, cucumbers, and 1 can rinsed and drained chickpeas to the salad dressing and toss to blend well. Let stand about 1 hour, then stir in 1 cup chopped flat leaf parsley. ( from Sunset Magazine September 2017 issue)

Grilled pepper and herb relish: Heat grill to medium-high. Grill 1 ½ lbs bell, sweet frying or pimento peppers, covered and turning occasionally, until softened and lightly charred, 7 to 12 minutes, transferring to a medium bowl as done. Let stand until cool enough to handle. Pull skins off the peppers, pull off stems and swipe out seed with your hand, working in a strainer over a bowl to catch juices. Finely chop peppers, then return to the bowl with the juices. Stir in ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, 1 tbsp sherry or wine vinegar, and 2 tbsp coarsely chopped fresh marjoram, oregano, or basil leaves. Smear this spread over bread with goat cheese, as a topping for grilled fish, chicken or steak; even pasta sauce. (from Sunset Magazine September 2017 issue)

Corn Chowder with Wild Rice: remove the kernels from 4 ears fresh sweet corn, reserve. In a stock pot over medium heat, combine the halved cobs of the corn and 7 cups of water, and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove cobs with tongs and discard; reserve stock. In a stockpot over medium heat, cook 6 slices diced thick cut bacon, stirring often, until cooked through but not crisp. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Add 1 peeled and diced large carrot, 1 large red onion, diced. And 3 tbsp butter. Season with ½ tsp salt and cook until carrot and onion soften, about 15 minutes. Add 4 minced cloves of garlic and 2 tsp fresh minced rosemary, and cook for 1 minute. Add corn kernels, 5 cups of reserved corn stock, ¼ tsp pepper,  and 1 tsp salt and bring to a simmer. Transfer half a cup of soup to a blender and puree until smooth. Using a fine mesh sieve, transfer pureed soup back into stock pot. Stir in 3 cups cooked wild rice and reserved bacon into soup. Serve immediately.

Kale Caesar Salad: Preheat oven to 300. For croutons, mince 2 garlic cloves, in a medium saucepan warm ¼ cup olive oil and the minced garlic over low heat; remove. Add 4 cups bread cubed into 1 inch pieces. Sprinkle with ¼ tsp salt. Stir to coat. Spread bread pieces in a single layer on a shallow baking pan. Bake 20 minutes or until crisp and golden brown, stirring once. Cool completely. Meanwhile, for the dressing, in a blender combine 4 cloves garlic, ½ cup olive oil, 6 anchovy filets, ¼ cup lemon juice, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, and 2 egg yolks. Blend until smooth. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Remove stems from 3 large bunches of lacinato kale and thinly slice the leaves. Add the dressing, and using your hands work the dressing into the kale. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. To serve, sprinkle with 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese and top with croutons.

Fall Potato Salad: Toss 2 lbs cubed potatoes with salt and olive oil and spread on a baking sheet. Roast in a 450 degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes. Combine with various fall vegetables of your choice; onion, shallot, garlic, carrots, roasted winter squash,celariac or parsnips for example. Toss with fresh tomato wedges, basil, thyme or other herbs of your choice. Dress with ¼ cup olive oil whipped with 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar.

 

Wobbly Cart Farm Fall CSA box #2

10-28-14

Wobbly Cart Farm fall CSA box #2

Large share: parsnips, escarole, butternut squash, yellow onion, rainbow lacinato kale, rutabaga, sweet peppers, purple potatoes, jalapeno peppers, cilantro

 Small share: parsnips, escarole, butternut squash, yellow onion, rainbow lacinato kale, rutabaga, sweet pepper, jalapeno peppers, and cilantro

 

Dear CSA members,

Well, I would like to think that things are finally going to start slowing down around the farm this week, and they are in their way. Unfortunately, with the perceived reduction in workload comes a simultaneous reduction in crewmembers. Many of our loyal and hard working crew head off to greener pastures about this time of year, leaving those of us left with many more hours of tasks to complete. All with fewer daylight hours and more challenging conditions in which to complete them!

The good news is as of next week our markets will be scaled back to just Thursday –Sunday, as this will be the last Tuesday for the Chehalis farmers market. Also, Fall CSA will end on Tuesday November 11th. Visions of a much-needed rest are starting to look closer to a reality!

Once the harvest workload slows down, amazingly we will turn our attention to planning for next season. We will begin going over our crops successes and failures and make variety selections for next season. Seeds will be ordered, bookkeeping and paperwork of all kinds will be done, tractor maintenance will hopefully be performed, and by February we will be busy planting early crops in the greenhouse! It’s quite astonishing all that goes in to planning and succeeding on a small organic vegetable farm and more and more it seems that we have very little downtime in doing so!

On that note, I will leave you to enjoy your vegetables for this week. Amazingly, we still have sweet peppers this week, as well as a nice selection of hardy greens, root vegetables, and sweet winter squash. Here are also some notes about vegetables that you may not be familiar with.

Rutabaga: this cross between a cabbage and turnip is one of the many edible manifestations of the brassica family. Rutabagas have been eaten for centuries by humans and are excellent roasted and mashed. They are very high in nutrients and fiber and low in calories.

Escarole: these hardy and bitter greens are one of our fall and winter stars. Escarole is much like lettuce in texture but adds a very nice bitterness that pairs well with sweet flavors of fruit and balsamic vinegar. You can also grill or braise them and then dress with a vinaigrette. I have also heard that soaking the greens in water for a few hours will reduce some of the bitterness if so desired.

Parsnips: parsnips are a root vegetable member of the carrot and parsley family that has been eaten in Europe for centuries. These sweet white roots are excellent served mashed, baked, boiled, roasted, made into fries, and cooked into soups and stews. You can store them in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator for quite some time to come if desired. We plant parsnips very early in the spring in order to have them ready for harvest when the cold weather sets in as they sweeten up with the cold and frosty weather.

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 in the oven with salt or soy sauce 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!

 

Thank you all,

 

Asha, Joe and the crew at Wobbly Cart

 

 

Parsnip Puree: cover 2 c. peeled and chopped parsnips with water in a medium pot. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook until very tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Drain and place in a food processor with ¼ cup milk, 1 tbsp butter and salt and black pepper to taste. Puree until smooth.

Butternut Squash Cheesecake with Chocolate crust and Salted Caramel: Make crust: Preheat oven to 350. Whirl 9oz of chocolate wafer cookies in a food processor until finely ground. Whirl in ½ cup melted unsalted butter just until incorporated. Pour crumbs into a 9-inch spring form pan and press over bottom and about 1inch up the sides of the pan. Bake 7 min, then let cool on a rack. Reduce heat to 300. Make filling: In a large bowl, with a mixer on medium speed, beat 3 8oz pkg cream cheese, at room temp, ¾ cup sugar, and ½ cup light brown sugar, and 1 tbsp flour until smooth. Beat in 4 large eggs, one at a time. Add in 1 cup of cooked, pureed, butternut squash, ¼ cup each heavy cream, sour cream, and maple syrup, the zest of 2 medium oranges, 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice. Beat until just blended. Wrap the bottom of your pan with foil, pressing it up the outside. Set the spring form pan in a roasting pan and pour filling into the crust. Pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come about halfway up the side of the ring pan. Bake until the cheesecake barely jiggles in the center when gently shaken, about 1-¼ hours. Let cheesecake cool on a rack 1 hour, then chill until cold, at least 5 hours. Whisk 6 tbsp store-bought caramel topping with 1/8 tsp table salt in a bowl and spoon over the cheesecake. Arrange ½ cup coarsely chopped toasted pecans around the rim and sprinkle flaked sea salt over pecans for garnish. (Adapted from a recipe in the November 2011 issue of Sunset Magazine.)

Rutabaga and Carrot Soup: In a large saucepan, sauté 1 medium onion in 1 tbsp butter for 5 minutes. Add 3 small carrots and 1 small rutabaga peeled and chopped. Add ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp ground ginger, and ¼ tsp nutmeg. Sauté for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 1-cup vegetable or chicken stock and cook covered, on low heat for 20 to 30 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and tender. Puree the soup with 2 cups orange juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with unsweetened whipped cream and a dollop of cranberry sauce.

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.)

Lentil and Vegetable Stew with Kale: Heat 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large pot over high heat. Add 1 large chopped onion, and 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped, 1 medium celery root, peeled and chopped, and 1 medium rutabaga, peeled and chopped; sprinkle with salt and pepper and sauté until beginning to soften and brown, 10 to 11 minutes. Stir in 1 lb brown lentils, rinsed and 1 Tbsp herbes de Provence. Add 8 cups vegetable broth and 1 large bunch kale, ribs removed and leaves coarsely chopped. Bring to a boil, stirring to incorporate Kale. Reduce heat to med-low, cover with lid slightly ajar, and simmer until lentils are tender, about 20 minutes. Add more broth to thin, if desired. Season with salt and pepper. (From the March 2011 issue of Bon Appétit magazine).

Kale Cabbage Salad: Stem and chop one bunch of kale, finely shred ½ a red cabbage, finely chop ½ a red onion, and grate 1 large carrot and place in a large serving bowl. For the dressing combine ½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, 1/3 cup dark sesame oil, 2 tbsp brown sugar, 3 tsp freshly grated ginger, and sea salt and pepper to taste. Pour the dressing over the salad and top with ½ cup toasted, chopped almonds.

Kale, White Bean and Escarole Soup: In a large soup pot over low heat, add 3 Tbsp olive oil and sauté 2 oz pancetta, finely chopped, 1 large yellow onion, chopped, 4 cloves minced garlic, 1 celery stalk, finely chopped, and 1 chopped carrot until tender and fragrant, 15-20 minutes. Add 2 cups kale, stems removed, leaves washed and chopped and 5 cups Escarole, stems removed, leaves washed and chopped. Cook until the greens are wilted and tender, about 10 minutes. Stir in 1 cup chopped tomatoes and cook another 10 minutes. Pour in 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock and bring the soup to a boil. Once boiling, cover the pot, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add 2 cans cannellini beans and cook uncovered for 20 minutes. Just before serving, add the juice of ½ lemon, stirring to combine and salt and pepper to taste.

 

 

 

 

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #17

2013fallcsaflyer2 Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #17

Large Shares: Spinach, Delicata Squash, Leeks, Potatoes, Red Onions, Butterhead Lettuce, Carrots, Sweet Peppers, Celariac, Parsnips, Fresh Thyme, Garlic

Small Shares: Eggplant, Delicata Squash, Leeks, Red Onion, Lettuce, Carrots, Cabbage, Fresh Thyme, Garlic

Dear CSA members,

Seems like almost overnight the leaves have turned color and are blowing down in the fall wind. What happened to summer? The week’s have flown by and now we are reaching the end of our season. It has been an amazing journey and such a pleasure growing and packing these vegetables for you. Hope you have enjoyed the journey as well! We still have tons of produce in the fields and barns to carry us through the next several months, as this week’s box will reflect. We have many of our best fall staples this week. A fresh bunch of spinach for the large shares, as well as, our first taste of leeks, Delicata squash, thyme, celariac and parsnips. Delicata squash is a delicious winter squash variety. This long yellow and green striped squash will keep for several weeks on your counter top or in the pantry, and in fact will develop more flavor in time. To eat cut in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds and bake face down in a buttered glass baking pan at 350 degrees until tender. Scoop out the sweet and tender flesh and enjoy. There are many ways to use winter squash including baking them into pies. If you don’t want to eat it now, it will keep for several weeks, so no hurry. The large and unusual knobby root with celery-like tops is celeriac. When the root is scrubbed and peeled, inside is a firm ivory flesh. The celeriac roots is very low in starch and is a nice alternative to potatoes and other starchier root vegetables. It tastes like a subtle blend of celery and parsley. You can use it in soups, grated into salads, roasted in a pan of other root vegetables, or even French fried instead of potatoes. Large shares will also get 1 lb of parsnips. These are the gorgeous white carrot-like roots. Indeed, they are related to the carrot and have been eaten as a vegetable since antiquity. The parsnip develops an incredibly sweet and rich flavor once we have had several weeks of cold weather, a phenomenon that has occurred early this year! You can enjoy parsnips peeled, then roasted, fried, boiled and mashed and even raw. Both parsnips and celeriac will keep a very long time if wrapped and refrigerated. Thyme is an herb from a low growing woody perennial plant. This aromatic herb can be used for cooking, medicine, and aromatic purposes and stands up very well to our robust fall and winter vegetables. The leaves are excellent fresh added to your dishes near the end of cooking to preserve the delicate flavor. Also, you could easily dry your thyme for later use by spreading the sprigs out in a warm dry location for a few days, then stipping the dry leaves off into a storage container. And last but not least, another star of the fall and winter: leeks! These tall alliums look like giant scallions and are and excellent addition to your fall and winter menu. Slice the leek lengthwise and rinse out any sediment before chopping. The white part is the most desirable and adds a sweet subtle onion flavor to your dishes. Leeks are superb in soups, braised, or sliced very thin and crisp-fried and a garnish. Hope you enjoy! And please remember to return your CSA boxes to the drop site and well as clear up any remaining balance on your account before the season is over. Thank you! Asha, Joe and the Crew at Wobbly Cart

Fall Potato Salad: Toss 2 lbs cubed potatoes with salt and olive oil and spread on a baking sheet. Roast in a 450 degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes. Combine with various fall vegetables of your choice; onion, garlic, carrots, roasted winter squash,celariac or parsnips for example. Toss with fresh tomato wedges, basil, thyme or other herbs of your choice. Dress with ¼ cup olive oil whipped with 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar.

Roasted Carrots with Parsnips and Thyme: Preheat oven to 350. Peel and trim 1 lb each of carrots and parsnips and cut them inhalf lengthwise. Large ones can be quartered. Place them on a large rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle the carrots and parsnips with 3 tbsp olive oil and 2 tbsp honey. Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Scatter 6 sprigs of fresh thyme on top. After 10 minutes, give the veggies a toss and put back in the oven for another 10 minutes until soft and slightly caramelized. Serve warm.

Celeriac Mash: Peel and dice 3 ½ cups of celeriac. Cook celeriac in a large saucepan of boiling slated water for 15 minutes. Add 1 12 oz potato that has been peeled, and cut into 1 ½ inch chunks, and boil until celeriac and potato are very tender, about 15 minutes longer. Drain. Return to same saucepan; stir over medium-high heat until any excess liquid in pan evaporates, about 2 minutes. Add ¼ cup heavy cream and 2 Tbsp butter; mash until mixture is almost smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Leek and Potato Gratin: Preheat oven to 375. In a large pot of salted boiling water, parboil 3 lbs potatoes, sliced 1/8 inch thick, for 5 minutes. Drain potatoes well and set aside. In a large skillet, heat 2 Tbsp unsalted butter over medium heat. Saute 10 medium leeks, white and light green parts only, halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into 1 inch pieces (washed thoroughly), and 4 chopped garlic cloves until leeks are tender about 7 minutes. Set aside. In a buttered 9 x 13 inch baking dish, arrange half of reserved potatoes in an overlapping pattern. Pour 1 cup cream and ½ cup milk over the top and sprinkle with 1 tsp salt. Top with reserved leeks and arrange remaining potatoes. Pour another cup of heavy cream and ½ cup milk and sprinkle with ½ tsp salt. Bake until potatoes are tender, top of gratin is golden brown, and most of the cream and milk have been absorbed, about 45 minutes. Garnish with parsely. Serves 12. From November 2011 issue of Country Living magazine).

Delicata Squash with Thyme and Cider Glaze: Peel 2 medium Delicata squash with a vegetable peeler, cut it in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds with a spoon. Cut each piece in half lengthwise again, then crosswise into ½ inch thick slices. Melt 3 Tbsp unsalted butter in a large skillet over low heat. Add and 1 Tbsp coarsely chopped thyme and cook, stirring, until the butter just begins to turn golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Do not brown the herbs. Cooking the herbs in butter mellows their flavor and improves their texture. Add the squash to the skillet, then 1 ½ cups unfiltered apple cider or juice, 1 cup water, 2 tsp sherry vinegar, 1 tsp salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat at an even boil until the cider has boiled down to a glaze and the squash is tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Taste and season with pepper and additional salt if needed. ( from The Herbfarm Cookbook by Jerry Traunfeld).

Delicata Squash Rings: Preheat oven to 375. Take a whole delicata squash and slice it across sideways. This will make ring shapes out of it. Scoop the seeds out of the middles of your squash rings. Lightly oil a large cast iron skillet with olive oil. Lay the rings out in a single layer across the skillet. Place in the hot oven. Bake for about 10 minutes. Then flip the rings with a spatula. Bake the other side until both sides are lightly browned and the squash is tender. Remove from oven and serve.

Frizzled Leeks: Cut 2 leeks (white and very light green parts only) into 2 inch lengths and then cut lengthwise into very fine shreds. Rinse the shreds thoroughly, using your fingers to separate the pieces and remove any grit hiding there. Drain thoroughly and blot dry with a clean towel. While the leeks dry, heat 2 to 4 cups canola oil in a deep pan. The pan should hold about 1 ½ inches deep of the oil. When the oil surface is shivering, add a few leek shreds and fry for 10 to 15 seconds. Remove the leeks to a paper towel lined platter to drain and cool. The oil should be hot enough to crisp the leeks golden brown in about 10 to 15 seconds, adjust temperature as needed. Fry the leeks in small batches until all are golden and crisp. Lightly season them with salt and use for snacking or to top salads and creamy soups. They will keep in an airtight container for 3 days at room temp.