Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Golden Potatoes.  I've never been much of a potato lover. I am not your meat and potatoes type. But....garden potatoes, especially the varieties that I choose to grow like Yukon Gold potatoes have a delightful flavor.  And -of course- we don't use synthetic herbicides.

Heirloom Garlic.  The garlic has been harvested and is curing in the rafters of the barn- I'll have some at market this week.  It is very tasty!

Let's celebrate summer with Golden Potatoes, Heirloom Garlic, and Grilled Bratwurst! Don't forget some sauteed scallions and kale!

Liina’s Roasted Rosemary Potatoes
My friend Liina made this recipe at least once a week during college, filling the Warren Wilson College Eco-Dorm kitchen and common room with the cozy aroma of rosemary.

2 1/2 pounds of potatoes, quartered or chunked into 1 inch by 1 inch pieces
4 Tbsp. olive oil or cooking oil
2 cloves garlic, minced (Liina left out the garlic)
5 Tbsp. snipped fresh rosemary or 2 Tbsp. dried rosemary, crushed
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper

1. Preheat oven to 375 F. Place potatoes in gallon bag or very large Tupperware tub.  Add oil, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper to potato container and shake well to mix. 

2.  Add seasoned potatoes to several shallow roasting pans or cookie sheets, keeping the potatoes from touching.  (I use at least large 3 pans.)  

3.   Roast, uncovered, for 40 to 60 minutes or until tender and brown on the edges, stirring every 10 minutes.  Add additional salt and pepper if desired.

Cucumber yogurt salad
            Wash cucumbers well.  Finely slice, dice, or grate cucumber.  Mix with plain yogurt (greek style yogurts are particularly good for this recipe).  Add as much yogurt as you prefer.  This salad can range from being almost purely cucumbers with a yogurt dressing to a bowl of yogurt with some cucumbers in it.  Salt to taste. 

Add fresh flavor. Try adding dill, crushed garlic, diced spring onion, parsley, or another of your favorite herbs.  

Chard (or Kale or Spinach) frittata with goat cheese
Check out the link for this delicious recipe!
“ I made it tonight with your eggs, and chard, onions and goat cheese from other market vendors. Yummy!”  Caite McKinney, CSA member.

Creamy Baked Swiss Chard and Pasta
I don’t like to call anything “noodle casserole,” so I’m renaming this dish Creamy Baked Swiss Chard and Pasta.  You may omit the parsley if you wish. You can also cut back on the sour cream and cheese.  –Marie

Printed from COOKS.COM

3 tbsp. olive oil
2/3 c. chopped walnuts
1 lg. onion, thinly sliced
2 lg. carrots, coarsely grated
1 lg. bunch Swiss Chard, chopped
1 clove minced garlic
1/3 c. minced parsley
1/2 tsp. thyme leaves
8 tsp. soy sauce
1 c. sour cream
3 c. pasta
2 c. grated Jack cheese
Heat oil in large frying pan and saute nuts until lightly browned. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon, and then stir in onions and carrots.
Sauté until onion is translucent, and then remove from pan. Add chard, garlic, parsley and thyme and sauté until chard is limp.
Combine soy sauce and sour cream; add to chard mixture along with walnuts, onions and carrots.
Stir to mix well. Add salt to taste. Spread pasta in a lightly greased 2 quart casserole and spoon vegetable mixture over top.
Sprinkle with cheese and bake in 400°F oven for 15 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and casserole is heated through.
Serves 6.


The Mudpit  Road. 
Muddy path in the squash

We have sandy loam soils.  The soil in our big vegetable field drains water in record time.  But this May and June's approximately 20 inches of rain have kept some roads, paths, and fields very soggy.  Weeds love water and so do veggies, but the vegetable plants can get waterlogged and sad.

So many weeds!  Poor squash plants!
We don't use synthetic chemical like Roundup.  Weeding has to happen at key moments- but many projects need to happen at key moments, so sometimes the weeding doesn't get done.  Like when the soil is so wet that when you pull grass out of the ground, it will start growing again!

The hens love the beautiful clover that is still in the pastures from the cool weather!

We are growing some wonderful grasses and clovers!

Okra the dog likes to supervise our work.

Potato time!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Kale Pesto. Farmer John’s Cookbook, The Real Dirt on Vegetables.

This recipe is a winner.  Almost everyone loves kale chips ,right? Well, this recipe is the 2nd best sneaky food trick you can do with kale right next to making kale chips.  I add more garlic and salt to my version of this kale pesto.  I also double the recipe and use 2 bunches of kale. If you are going to dirty your food processor, may as well make some extra, right?  
This amazing recipe is from the farm of one of my favorite farm “characters,”  John Peterson of Angelic Organics.  If you haven’t seen it, you must see the vibrant and hilarious documentary, The Real Dirt on Farmer John.  And also, you should purchase the quirky, down to earth farm cookbook, Farmer John’s Cookbook, The Real Dirt on Vegetables. Every CSA member or market customer should have one!

Recipe is as follows…from Farmer John’s Cookbook, The Real Dirt on Vegetables
Kale Pesto

While your Italian grandmother might cringe at this being called a pesto, reassure her that this is just a contemporary spin on that classic dish and you will continue to also make it with basil and pine nuts.  But still, make this dish for her- she will certainly be won over.  This version of pesto is particularly good over roasted potatoes, but it works great over pasta, too.  You can freeze it, but if you do, don’t add the cheese; simply mix it in after the pesto has thawed, when you are ready to serve. Shareholder (adapted from the Seed Savers Calendar, 1998).
Makes about 1 cup

¼ cup                                    chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon plus
½ teaspoon                        salt, divided
½ pound                              kale coarsely chopped (1 bunch)
2 cloves                                                garlic
½ cup                                    extra virgin olive oil
½ cup                                    freshly grated Parmesan cheese (about 1 ½ ounces)
                                                Freshly ground  black pepper

1.        Toast the chopped walnuts in a dry, heavy skillet (preferably cast iron) over high heat, stirring constantly, until they start to brown in spots and become fragrant.  (Be careful not to over toast them, as the will burn very quickly once they are toasted.) Immediately transfer the walnuts to a dish to cool.
2.       Bring two quarts of water to a boil.  Add 1 tablespoon salt, then add the kale.  Cook kale until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain. (I only cooked the kale 5 minutes.)
3.       Put the garlic in a blender or food processor and pulse until minced.
4.       Add the walnuts and kale; pulse until well combined.  With the blender or food processor running, pour in the olive oil in a stead smooth pencil-thin stream.

5.       When the ingredients are thoroughly combined, transfer to a bowl.  Stir in the Parmesan, remaining ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper.  Serve hot or chilled.