Monday, September 13, 2010

CSA News, Week 19

In Your Share . . .
Items in shares may vary depending on share size and harvest day. Each share may not have every item listed below.

Butternut Squash
The butternut is one of the most popular and most recognized of all the hard-skinned fall squashes. It will store very well for you (several months) at room temperature and is very versatile in that it can be substituted for most any other winter squash in recipes.

Butternut squash, like other winter squash, boasts 10 times the amount of vitamin A content of its summer squash relations, and is also an excellent source of potassium and fiber. Butternut squash is easy to steam, bake, roast, boil, and mash. Butternut squash is often the real ingredient in canned “pumpkin” pie filling, as it has excellent sweetness and consistency. Add small amounts to breads, muffins, cookies, and pancake batter for seasonal sweetness and color.

A brand new planting of cucumbers is ready to go – thanks to irrigation once again. Refrigerate.


Red Onion and Yellow Onion – organic

Bell Peppers

Jalapeno Hot Peppers – organic
Find a handful of hot jalapeno peppers this week, you may want to use fresh, freeze for later in the year, or slice and add to vinegar for a quick pickle. Capsaicin produces the pungency of hot peppers. This substance is soluble in milk but not water. Most of the intensity of a hot pepper resides in its seeds and inner ribs, so remove these to reduce heat, but retain them in cooking for the full blast. For greatest safety, wear rubber gloves while chopping and handling them. Do not touch eyes, nose, or mouth.

To freeze bell peppers or hot peppers: Wash and dry peppers, cut into bite-size pieces and place in an airtight container or zip-lock freezer bag. Peppers will soften when thawed, so take out only the amount you need and replace the rest in the freezer.

Radishes – organic
This week’s harvest offers some of the fall planted radishes. Several varieties are ready including the Easter Egg (round red, rose, and white) along with the heirloom White Icicle Radish (long tapered white). Refrigerate prior to use; know that you can use the leaves in a stir-fry or mixed with the kale greens; and enjoy the radish root either as a snack, sliced on sandwiches, or in the salad recipe found below.

Raspberries – organic
The fall bearing red raspberries have lowered their production of ripe berries from when we had such hot temperatures. As we shared with you earlier in the year, ripe berries appeared a full month earlier than we normally expect them. So, we may see them ending earlier than usual as well. As you know, they do not store for very long and are one of the most perishable fruits grown – so enjoy quickly. Find a new recipe below.

Yellow Squash or Patty Pan Squash or Green Zucchini

Tomatoes, Heirloom – organic
We are still harvesting a handful of tomatoes several times weekly, but this late in the season most of the plants have succumbed to all the heat and dryness. We find the flavor has intensified, though, and most of the slicing and salad tomatoes still have a wonderful taste. Store at room temperature.

Sweet Basil – organic

Garlic - organic

Kale Greens - organic

Recipes to Enjoy . . .

Angel Hair Pasta with Tomatoes, Garlic, and Basil
adapted from The New York Times

1 lb. angel hair pasta
4-5 tomatoes, cut into bite-sized chunks
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
Red pepper flakes to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Marinate tomatoes in olive oil, garlic, basil, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper for 4-6 hours. Boil angel hair in salted water until al dente. Drain, then toss with tomato mixture and as much Parmesan as desired.

Sautéed Yellow and Green Zucchini
Adapted from a 101.cookbooks dot com recipe. If you decide to double the recipe, divide and cook the zucchini in two pans. If you crowd the squash too much, it steams rather than browns, and loses too much structure, which isn't what you're after.

2 T extra virgin olive oil
5 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 red onion, thinly sliced
fine grain sea salt
2 medium zucchini, sliced into ¼-inch thick coins
a good handful of dill, chopped
¼ C toasted almond slices

In your largest skillet heat the oil over medium-high heat. Stir in the garlic and cook until it starts to take on a hint of color. Stir in the onion and a big pinch of salt, and cook until it starts to soften, a couple minutes. Add the zucchini, stir to get it coated with a bit of oil, and arrange the coins in as much of a single layer as your pan permits. Dial the heat up a bit if needed, add another pinch of salt and cook, stirring occasionally until the zucchini browns - ten minutes or so. Remove from heat and fold in the dill and almonds before serving. Taste, and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Serves 2 - 4.

Fire & Ice
Recipe adapted from Hamilton Hill Inn, a small restaurant that was open in downtown Georgetown during the 1980’s. This recipe works well with whatever items happen to be in season. Gets better if marinated overnight and will keep for several days.

4-5 small or 2-3 medium tomatoes, diced into bite-sized chunks
2 larger cucumbers, peeled & seeded if desired, cut into bite-sized chunks
1-2 onions, diced or sliced thinly
1 pepper, seeded –sliced into bite-sized pieces

handful of radishes –diced into bite-sized pieces

¾ cup vinegar
¼ cup water
1 ½ tsp celery seed
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
3 T sugar
little dry mustard

Mix dressing together and put in saucepan on stove. Bring to a boil. Prepare veggies and mix together in serving bowl. Pour hot dressing over top, stir, refrigerate, and allow to marinate at least 1 hour.

Berry Bombs
Our thanks to a CSA member for sharing this wonderful recipe for a special treat. She has used both raspberries and blackberries with success. It is dairy and gluten free because of the type of chips and butter. NOTE: She recommends using a "silpat" sheet which is a silicone like baking pad, great substitute for wax paper, can be used for no stick baking as well- very, heat tolerant and easy to clean. Available online many places.

½ pint raspberries
½ C "tropical source" semi sweet chocolate chips (good foods coop)
1 T Earth Balance margarine (good foods coop)
1 T Grand Marnier (not good foods coop)
3 T water

Put the silpat sheet on a baking sheet. Make separate mounds of berries, about 1 T or more for each mound, on the silpat sheet.

Melt margarine and chocolate chips over low heat in a saucepan, whisk, add liqueur and water. Carefully drizzle by tablespoon over each mound of raspberries.

Refrigerate the bombs on the pan for a while, maybe a few hours or more, until stiff enough to lift off with a spatula, or with your fingers if you are in a hurry.

Variation of Berry Bombs, recipe above.

Before covering berries with chocolate sauce mixture, top each mound of raspberries with about 1 T of unsalted creamy peanut butter (good foods coop).