- Thanks for all your box returns; the next distribution is Thursday March 23rd.
- Please remember that once your maple syrup is opened it needs refrigeration.
Farm News from Jane
So if March comes in like a lion and will go out like a lamb does that mean as it came in like a lamb it will go out like a lion? It was over sixty degree on the first and then down to zero and the 5th. So perhaps it is just an expression of the volatility of March’s weather and gives us hope for the pleasant weather that is soon coming! Whichever the case, fluctuating temperatures help to supply the awaiting buckets with fresh sap. Last week’s “run” of sap allowed us to fill pint jugs of freshly made maple syrup for all our winter shares; Woohoo! I’ve really enjoyed the treks through the woods gathering sap. Some years the deep snow or thick mud make it a more difficult job but this season as the woods are fairly dry it has been a very pleasant task. And now that all the ice in the pond has melted away it is so exciting to see it full to the brim! At the end of last season the springs in the pond had begun to overcome the almost daily irrigation use and to refill it. Now the happy pair of geese has lots of water to enjoy as they prepare to nest. The migratory birds are back earlier than usual. We’ve seen and heard the lovely songs in the morning again; robins, red winged blackbirds and of course the many melodies of the starlings that never do find their way south are a very joyful sound. I have to admit though that it makes me feel more urgency in the morning to “get up and at’em”… But the beginning of daylight savings time this weekend will alter the perception of that a bit. I guess it doesn’t really matter for us unless we have to “be someplace” at a certain time! The advent of spring has also brought three new calves to the farm; it seems a bit early but momma knows best!!!
The onions received their first haircut this past week and more and more seeds have been sown and germinated in the heated greenhouse. The warm weather and sunshine has caused the spinach to grow quickly and kale, Swiss chard, bok choy and Napa cabbage have been transplanted out in the high tunnel with the spinach. It’s always a bit of an adventure when the first spring veggies are “put out” on their own form the comforts of the heated green house into the unheated high tunnel. They are protected by layers of row covers which gives them an extra twenty degrees of warmth. But they still have to make that transition and “harden off” before they adjust themselves to the new climate and begin to grow anew. It a watch and see progress that requires a bit of faith and hope; but it is written ‘hope springs eternal’…
And on that note I wish you good eating at your St. Joseph’s table and your St. Patrick’s Day celebrations! Jane
Produce: Maple Syrup! Carrots French fingerling potatoes Onions Chioggia beets Garlic Kohlrabi Head lettuce Spinach
–The maple syrup is a medium grade in color and flavor. The darker the color the more intense maple flavor. I am a maple snob and reserve a good portion of the dark syrup we make for home use.
– The French fingerling potatoes (as many of the roots and brassicas like kales and crucifers) become sweeter the longer they are stored. They are preparing themselves to sprout because they are a biennial vegetable. (They need two full seasons to produce seed).
– If your onions start to sprout enjoy the sprouts as scallions.
– We had some small bulbs of garlic sorted out so we tucked one in each garlic share.
AUTUMN BEET AND VEGETABLE SALAD WITH CHEESE AND NUTS
Dressing: 1/3 cup minced onions; 5 tablespoons cider vinegar; 3-4 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or parsley; 11/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard; 1/2 cup olive oil; salt and pepper to taste
Salad: 2 cups cooked, diced yellow or red beets; 1 1/2 cups blanched, diced carrots; 1 1/2 cups cooked, diced waxy-type potatoes; 1 cup diced roasted red peppers; 11/2 cups diced Jonathan apples; 4-6 ounces cheese, crumbled; 2/3 cup nuts, toasted 6-8 minutes at 350 degrees
Make dressing: Combine onions, vinegar, basil or parsley, and mustard. Whisk in olive oil in a thin stream. Season with salt and pepper. To assemble the salad, toss each type of vegetable and the apples, one type at a time, with enough dressing to barely coat them. Arrange in separate piles in a wide, shallow bowl. Serve at room temperature. Just before serving, sprinkle salad with cheese and nuts, add more salt and pepper to taste, and toss gently. The original recipe calls for blue cheese and hickory nuts, but other nuts and cheeses can be used according to your preference.
Makes 8-12 servings; Recipe from MACSAC
DIJON ROASTED BEETS
3 lbs beets, uniform in size (about 2 inches); 4 Tbsp olive oil, divided; 1 tsp salt; 1/2 tsp black pepper; 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard; Juice of one orange; 1 tsp sugar; 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar; 1 Tbsp fresh minced rosemary
Trim beets of all but 1/2 inch stem and root. Place beets in roasting pan; add 1 Tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast at 400 degrees 45 minutes or until beets are tender. Whisk mustard, orange juice, sugar, and vinegar in bowl. Whisk in remaining 3 Tbsp olive oil and rosemary. Set aside. When beets are cool enough to handle, rub to remove skin cut into quarters. Add warm beets to bowl and toss with dressing. Let stand 30 minutes while beets absorb dressing. Makes 8 servings
1/2 pound beets, cooked; 1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger; 1/2 tsp grated orange rind or 1/4 tsp ground ginger; 1/3 cup orange juice; Salt and freshly ground pepper; 1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice to taste; 1/2 tbsp cornstarch; 1/2 tbsp butter or margarine; 1 tsp sugar; Grated orange rind for garnish
Cut cooked beets in julienne strips; set aside. In small bowl mix orange rind and juice, lemon juice, cornstarch, sugar, ginger, salt, and pepper to taste. Melt butter or margarine in saucepan; add orange juice mixture. Stir over medium heat until mixture boils; reduce heat. Add beets and return to boil again. Remove and serve with sprinkling of grated orange rind for an extra touch. Serves 2
SPICY CARROT DIP
1 onion; 3 carrots, plus extra to garnish; grated zest and juice of 2 oranges; 1 tablespoon hot curry paste; 2/3 cup plain yogurt; handful of fresh basil leaves; 1-2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, to taste; red Tabasco sauce, to taste; salt and freshly ground black pepper Finely chop the onion. Peel and grate the carrots. Place the onion, carrots, orange zest and juice and curry paste in a small saucepan.
Bring to a boil, cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes, until tender. Process the mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth. Let cool completely. Stir in the yogurt, then tear the basil leaves roughly into small pieces and stir them into the carrot mixture. 4 Add the lemon juice and Tabasco and season with salt and pepper. Serve within a few hours at room temperature. Garnish with grated carrot. Serves 4
CURRIED CARROT AND SWEET POTATO SOUP
2 tablespoons olive oil; 3-4 carrots, peeled, ends removed, and cut into small pieces; 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces; 1 small onion, peeled and chopped; 1 garlic clove, peeled and minced; 2 tablespoons sweet curry powder; 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth or water, or as needed; 1/4 cup orange juice; Salt and freshly ground black pepper; Chopped chives
Heat oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the carrots, sweet potatoes, onion, and garlic. Sauté until vegetables are tender and onions are translucent, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in the curry powder and continue to cook for 1 minute. Add vegetable broth to cover the vegetables and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer until the carrots and potatoes are fork tender, approximately 15 minutes. Remove from heat and puree the mixture with a handheld blender, or transfer mixture to a blender or food processor in batches if necessary, and puree until texture is smooth. If the mixture is too thick, add more broth or water. Transfer puree back to stock pot if necessary, and slowly whisk in orange juice. Heat through, and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into soup bowls, and garnish with chives to taste. Note: If you want to serve the soup cold, chill and top with crème fraiche or yogurt. 4-6 servings
Recipe from Kristina Creighton
BROWN SUGAR OR MAPLE GLAZED CARROT
1 lb. medium carrots or parsnips, 1T butter, 1T brown sugar or maple syrup
Cut the carrots or parsnips in half, both crosswise and lengthwise or in bite sized pieces.
In a medium saucepan cook the carrots or parsnips, covered, in a small amount of boiling salted, water for 8-10 minutes or until crisp tender. Drain; remove from pan. In the same pan combine the butter, brown sugar or maple syrup and dash of salt. Cook and stir over medium heat until combined. Add carrots or parsnips. Cook, uncovered about 2 minutes or until glazed, stirring frequently. Season to taste with black pepper.
HOT BEET & CARROT SLAW
2 T butter, 1 large clove garlic, 2 beets; fist sized, 1 medium carrot, ¾ C orange juice, salt and pepper
Prepare beets and carrots by peeling and grating. Crush and finely chop garlic. Sauté garlic in butter for 2 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook 5-8 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
SPINACH PESTO DIP
10 ounces frozen spinach, chopped; 1/4 cup walnuts; 1 teaspoon basil; 1/2 teaspoon oregano; Dash of salt; 1 clove garlic, crushed; 1 cup sour cream; 1 cup mayonnaise
Thaw spinach and drain. Blend all ingredients in blender. Cover; chill. Yields 2 cups; Recipe from Especially Herbs.
1/2 pounds spinach; 1clovesgarlic, coarsely chopped; 1+1/2 T olive oil
Remove spinach stems and wash leaves thoroughly. Sauté garlic in olive oil in pan. Add wet spinach. Cover. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes over low heat. Mix. Serves 1-2; Recipe from The Fruit and Vegetable Stand
WHEAT BERRY SALAD WITH GREENS & BEETS
3 medium beets, 6 tablespoons olive oil, Salt and Freshly ground pepper, 2 cups whole wheat berries
1 bunch kale or 2 cups spinach, 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar or other vinegar, 1⁄2 cup minced shallots, 1 tablespoon finely chopped sage, or 1 tsp if dried, 2 garlic gloves, 1⁄2 cup dry white wine
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees and roast chopped beets until tender. Bring wheat berries, 5 cups water, and 1⁄4 teaspoon salt to a boil. Cook over medium heat until tender. About 25-30 minutes. Remove stems from kale, slice leaves, and add to pot with wheat berries (or chop and add spinach or other greens if using). Cover and remove from heat. Steam until wilted, about 5 minutes. Drain and mix in a bowl with beets, vinegar, and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Use salt and pepper to taste, toss.
In a medium skillet heat 2 tablespoons olive oil, add shallots and a pinch of salt and cook over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes or until brown. Add the sage and cook for one minute, add garlic and cook for an additional minute while stirring. And wine and simmer, while continuing to stir, until evaporated. Add to salad, toss, and serve. Can be made ahead and refrigerated. Recipe form red Fire farm
1-1/2 lbs. potatoes; 1 onion; salt and pepper; nutmeg; 5 eggs; butter
Peel potatoes and onion and cut into pieces. Place in blender container with seasonings. Cover and blend on high speed until potatoes are grated and well mixed with the seasonings. Drain well, but do not squeeze dry. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Do not use blender for adding eggs. Melt a small amount of butter in a crepe pan. Cook potato crepes the same as any crepes. Sprinkle with more seasoning and serve immediately. Makes 6 servings
GREEK CHEESE AND POTATO PATTIES
1 1/4 pounds potatoes; 4 ounces feta cheese; 4 scallions, chopped; 3 tbsp chopped fresh fennel; 1 tbsp lemon juice; I egg, beaten; flour for dredging; 3 tbsp olive oil; salt and freshly ground black pepper
Boil the potatoes in their skins in lightly salted water until soft. Drain, then peel while still warm. Place in a bowl and mash. Crumble the feta cheese into the potatoes and add the scallions, dill, lemon juice and egg. Season with salt and pepper (the cheese is salty, so taste before you add salt). Stir well. Cover the mixture and chill until firm. Divide the mixture into walnut-size balls, then flatten them slightly. Dredge in the flour. Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the patties until golden brown on each side. Drain on paper towels and serve at once.
2 c. cubed peeled kohlrabi bulbs (2 medium); 3 medium potatoes 1/4 tsp. paprika; 6 drops Worcestershire sauce; 3 to 4 slices bacon; 3 eggs, separated; 1/3 c. milk; 1/8 tsp. ground red pepper (cayenne)
Cook kohlrabi in boiling salted water until tender, about 20 minutes. Peel and halve potatoes; cook in boiling salted water until tender. Drain vegetables; combine and mash, or put through ricer. Add paprika and Worcestershire sauce. Broil or fry bacon until crisp; crumble into the vegetables along with 1/4 c. drippings. Beat egg yolks; add milk and red pepper; thoroughly mix with vegetables, whipping as for mashed potatoes. Let cool slightly. Beat egg whites stiff and fold into vegetables. Heap lightly into greased 2-qt. baking dish, set in pan of hot water, and bake in slow oven (325°) 40 to 50 minutes, or until risen and delicately browned. Makes 8 servings
BUTTERMILK GARLIC DRESSING
1-2 medium garlic cloves; 4 tablespoons minced leeks; 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar; 1/2 cup buttermilk; 1/3 cup sour cream; large pinch sugar; 1/2 cup olive oil
Mince garlic; mash to a paste with fork or back of knife. Whisk garlic, leeks, vinegar, buttermilk, sour cream, and sugar in bowl. Gradually whisk in the olive oil. Season generously with salt and pepper to taste. Makes almost 11/2 cups; Recipe from MACSAC
MARKET RAGOUT OF KOHLRABI AND PEAS
1 tbsp butter; 6 spring onions, halved; 1 large kohlrabi, peeled and chunked; 1 marjoram or thyme sprig; sea salt and freshly ground pepper; 1 pound pod peas, shelled; a few handfuls baby spinach; dollop crème fraiche; 4 large basil leaves, slivered
Melt the butter in a skillet and add the onions, kohlrabi, and marjoram or thyme. Add water to cover halfway and a teaspoon of salt. Simmer while you shuck the peas. As soon as the vegetables are tender, after 12 to 15 minutes, add the peas and spinach and cook until the spinach has wilted down, a few minutes more. Stir in the crème fraiche and add the basil. Taste for salt and season with pepper. Serve this as a side dish or a course by itself. With a starch (puff pastry, ravioli, even buttered toast), it can be offered as a vegetarian main dish. Serves 2
KOHLRABI PANCAKES WITH FLAXSEEDS
Adaptable to many vegetables, these savory pancakes go great with Cucumber Tzatziki, plain yogurt, or sour cream.
1 pound kohlrabi (peeled), 3 tbsp ground flaxseed (whir whole ones in a blender or processor until ground), 2 tbsp flour
1/4 tsp salt, 1 carrot, 1 tbsp oil for frying (coconut oil is tasty)
Grate the kohlrabi and carrot (a food processor makes it easy). In a large bowl, mix the ground flaxseed, flour and salt. Then add the grated carrot and kohlrabi and mix. With your hands, form smallish patties about 1/2 inch thick. Cook in a frying pan with the oil until each side is golden brown. Add more oil if needed between rounds of pancakes. I love the way the ground flaxseed holds these together! You could also get them to hold together with egg if you don’t have flaxseed. You could probably finely chop kohlrabi greens too, and add those in to this. Recipe from red Fire Farm
FABULOUS GARLIC MASHED POTATOES
2 1/2 # potatoes, peeled and cut into 2 in. chunks, 3 garlic cloves peeled, 1 t. salt. Plus additional to taste, 2/3 C chicken broth, ¼ C sour cream, ¼ t freshly ground pepper, 1/8 t grated nutmeg
Place potatoes and garlic in a large saucepan and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat and add 1 t salt. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and cook until the potatoes are tender about 15 minutes. Drain the potatoes, return then to a pot, and place over low heat for about 1 minute until thoroughly dry. Transfer to a large bowl, or leave them in the saucepan to mash. Add the broth to the potatoes, and mash with a potato masher or handheld electric mixer to make a smooth puree. Add the sour cream and continue to mash until the potatoes are light and fluffy. Season with pepper, nutmeg and salt to taste. Makes four side dish servings; recipe form AMA’s Family Health Cookbook
1/2 cup butter; 2 garlic scapes, minced; 1 Tablespoon parsley; 1/2 teaspoon oregano
Soften butter to room temperature. Combine other ingredients, mixing well. Use with meats, breads, and vegetables. Yields 1/2 cup.
1/2 pound salt cod; 3 tbsp olive oil; ¼-1/2 cup heavy cream; 1-2 cloves garlic, peeled; pepper to taste; 1/2 cup mashed potatoes (optional)
Soak cod overnight in cold water to cover. Change water more than once if cod seems very salty and dry. Drain and rinse well. Simmer very gently in fresh water 10-15 minutes, or until cod is soft. Warm the oil and cream in separate pans. Mash the garlic and put it in a food processor. Add the drained cod and process until blended. With the processor running, add half the oil gradually through the lid opening, then half the cream. Repeat and process until puree is smooth. Add pepper and taste for seasoning. If you add potatoes, beat them in by hand. Serves 3-4
ZIPPY GARLIC DRESSING
2/3 c. salad oil; 1/4 c. wine vinegar; 1 tsp. sugar; 3/4 tsp. salt; 3/4 tsp. dry mustard; Dash freshly ground pepper; 1 garlic scape, minced
In a screw-top jar, combine all ingredients; shake well. Chill thoroughly before serving. Makes about 1 cup.