csa share – week 23

csa share week 23

Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Cipollini Onions – small Italian onions great for caramelizing
  • Shishito Peppers – everyone’s favorite “sometimes hot but mostly not” peppers for blistering in hot oil and tossing with salt!
  • Carrots
  • Bok Choy
  • Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Sunchokes – These are roots of a sunflower variety.  We enjoy them shredded and sauteed but they’re good roasted and in soups too.  Please note that they contain high levels of the carbohydrate inulin, which is difficult for some folks to digest.
  • Butterhead Lettuce
  • Bartlett Pears – I’m thinking this or this
  • Pie Pumpkin – my favorite basic pumpkin pie filling recipe below!

The share has shifted decidedly fallish over the past couple of weeks, just in time for Halloween.  We’ve been enjoying the return of the winter squash and various root staples in our own meals.  You can’t beat a good medley of roasted roots!

cauliflower

You wouldn’t know it from the past few shares, but our luck with cauliflower has been dismal this year.  Somehow we managed to fail the first couple of successions, causing us to question if spring and summer cauliflower are even worth trying for.  The succession we’re into now has at least reminded us how great it can be when it succeeds, so we’ll keep at it for the time being.  We hope you’re getting your fix of it, given how long you’ve had to wait to get some from us.

sunchokes

It’s also good to see the return of the sunchokes.  These are the roots of a specific type of sunflower that we discovered when we were CSA members, pre-farming.  The size of the roots is such a surprise given the tall, thin sunflower stalks. We love the nutty flavor and delicate texture of this root crop.  Plus they grow like weeds if they get some sun and water.  We know some folks have trouble digesting the inulin in sunchokes, so please eat them in moderation if you’re new to them. 

pie

And finally, it’s officially pumpkin pie season and we couldn’t be happier.  We’ll take any excuse for pie around here, but testing out the new variety of pie pumpkin this past week was a good one.  We had heard good things about Winter Luxury, and they seem to hold up in our taste test.  A fine grain for baking into pumpkin puree, and a nice sweet and mild pumpkin taste.  The lacy netting on the pumpkin skin is a fun decorative touch of this variety.  That recipe above has been my go-to for a basic pie filling after baking a pumpkin for the puree.  We hope you enjoy this week’s pie pumpkins in your favorite pumpkin concoction!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you next week!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Sunchoke Soup with Pumpkin Seeds

  • 8 cups water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 pounds Jerusalem artichokes (also called sunchokes)*
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped leek (white and pale green parts only)
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 7 cups (or more) vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • Ground white pepper
  • Shelled pumpkin seeds, toasted
  • Pumpkin seed oil (optional)
  • Sautéed chanterelle mushrooms (optional garnish)

Mix 8 cups water and vinegar in large bowl. Working with 1 Jerusalem artichoke at a time, peel and place in vinegar water to prevent discoloration. Set aside.

Melt butter in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onion, leek, and garlic; sprinkle with salt and sauté until soft and translucent, stirring often, about 12 minutes. Drain artichokes; rinse well and drain again. Cut into 1-inch pieces. Add to onion mixture and sauté 5 minutes. Add 7 cups vegetable broth, increase heat to high, and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until artichokes are very tender, about 1 hour. Cool slightly.

Working in batches, puree soup in blender until very smooth. Return to pot. Rewarm soup, adding more broth by 1/4 cupfuls if needed to thin. Stir in cream and season to taste with salt and white pepper. do ahead Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool, cover, and chill. Rewarm before continuing. Divide soup among bowls and garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds; top with a drizzle of pumpkin seed oil and some sautéed mushrooms, if desired.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Sunchoke-Soup-with-Pumpkin-Seeds-350413

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Thai Chicken Salad

For salad

1 bag of broccoli slaw about (2 or 3 cups)
1 cup sliced papaya
1 cup sliced cucumber
2 cups baby bok choy, chopped in small pieces (2 small bok choy)
1 red chili pepper, diced
4 cooked chicken breasts, shredded or cut in small pieces
1/4 cup chopped mint
1/2 cup peanuts or slivered almonds

For dressing

juice from 2 limes
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp peanut butter
1 tsp fish sauce
a pinch of red pepper flakes

  1. Add all salad ingredients to a large bowl and toss.
  2. In a smaller bowl mix all dressing ingredients together. Pour over salad and toss well.

From Jo Cooks, http://www.jocooks.com/healthy-eating/thai-chicken-salad/

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Cauliflower Cake

  • 1 small cauliflower, outer leaves removed, broken into 1 1/4-inch/3-cm florets (1 pound/450 g)
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled (6 ounce/170 g)
  • 5 tablespoons/75 ml olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary
  • 7 eggs (scant 1 pound/440 g)
  • 1/2 cup/15 g basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup/120 g all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/3 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 5 ounces/150 g coarsely grated Parmesan or another mature cheese
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Melted unsalted butter, for brushing
  • 1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon nigella seeds

Preheat the oven to 400°F/200°C.

Place the cauliflower florets in a saucepan and add 1 teaspoon salt. Cover with water and simmer for 15 minutes, until the florets are quite soft. They should break when pressed with a spoon. Drain and set aside in a colander to dry.

Cut 4 round slices off one end of the onion (each 1/4 inch/5 mm thick) and set aside. Coarsely chop the rest of the onion and place in a small pan with the oil and rosemary. Cook for 10 minutes over medium heat, stirring from time to time, until soft. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Transfer the onion to a large bowl, add the eggs and basil, whisk well, and then add the flour, baking powder, turmeric, Parmesan, 1 teaspoon salt, and plenty of pepper. Whisk until smooth before adding the cauliflower and stirring gently, trying not to break up the florets.

Line the base and sides of a 9 1/2-inch/24-cm spring-form cake pan with parchment paper. Brush the sides with melted butter, then mix together the sesame and nigella seeds and toss them around the inside of the pan so that they stick to the sides. Pour the cauliflower mixture into the pan, spreading it evenly, and arrange the reserved onion rings on top. Place in the center of the oven and bake for 45 minutes, until golden brown and set; a knife inserted into the center of the cake should come out clean. Remove from the oven and leave for at least 20 minutes before serving. It needs to be served just warm, rather than hot, or at room temperature.

From Epicurious via Epicurious by Yotam Ottolenghi, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Cauliflower-Cake-51254830

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