Week of July 23rd

One thing (among so very many!) that we didn’t anticipate was how difficult it would be to come inside, sit in front of the computer, and write posts when the weather outside is glorious. So we’re working on that.

Last week was our first pickup, finally! It was great to see you all, though things were a bit disorganized. When we planned pickup days, it was March or something, and the reality of 90-plus degree days was impossible to imagine. The weather makes keeping veggies cool out on the lawn extremely difficult, but we’re working it out.  We’ll note here, just for record-keeping purposes, that you got snow peas, kale, salad mix, green onions, broccoli or cauliflower, and lambsquarters last week.

This week – tomorrow, July 23 – you’ll be getting snow peas, summer savory, salad mix, collards or kale, pak choi, and scallions.

Summer savory is an aromatic herb that is often used in bean and meat dishes. Some people claim it has anti-flatulence properties. Rodale’s Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs suggests that you “mince fresh summer savory leaves and combine with garlic, bay, and lemon juice as a marinade for fish,” and also that it would be good in twice-baked potatoes.  According to Deborah Madison, in Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, “Like thyme, it lends an earthy note to vegetables that’s grounding, rather than sunny and bright, the way marjoram and basil are.” Barbara Kafka, author of Vegetable Love, recommends using summer savory in stuffings, mushroom dishes, and salads.

How about some recipes for collards and kale? Some people find it hard to get used to cooking with these thick green leaves, which take so much more time to cook than spinach, chard, or mustards. They also require a bit of oil in the pan if you’re sauteeing them, unlike their waterier counterparts (again, like spinach).

Pavich Vegetables from The Farmhouse Cookbook (6 servings):

  • 4 large Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into eighths
  • 2 t. salt
  • 1 large bunch collard greens or kale, stems removed (about 15 oz. leaves), rinsed and coarsely chopped
  • 6 T. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 1/2 t. dried red pepper flakes

1) Place the potatoes in a large saucepan or stockpot, and just cover with water. Add the salt, stir, and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and boil the potatoes gently, partially covered, until they are nearly tender but still firm in the center, about 12 minutes. Add the greens, cover the pot, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have cooked down and turned dark green, about 15 minutes. The potatoes will be thoroughly cooked and a bit soft at the edges.

2) While the potatoes and greens are cooking, place the oil and the garlic in a small heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, and cook until the garlic turns a very pale gold. Remove from the heat, stir in the hot pepper flakes, and set aside.

3) When the potatoes and greens are cooked, transfer them to a warmed serving bowl, with any remaining cooking liquid, and either pour the garlic mixture over all, or serve it on the side.

Greens with Tomatoes and Asiago from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone (serves 2):

  • 1 large bunch collard greens, stems removed, leaves cut into large pieces
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled and diced
  • Several pinches dried oregano
  • Grated Asiago cheese

Simmer or boil the greens in salted water (use 1 t. salt per quart of water, add greens when water boils, and cook, uncovered, until tender, 5 to 20 min.), then drain. Put them in a wide skillet with the oil, garlic, and tomatoes. Season with the oregano, and cook over high heat until the tomatoes are heated through. Serve with cheese grated over the top.

Kale and collards are very very good for you, being “leafy green vegetables,”  full of vitamins and minerals, as well as fiber. There’s a reason everyone’s always saying we should eat more of these things. They’re good for your eyes, your heart, your bones… you name it and there’s a good chance that leafy greens are good for it.  For a nutritional profile on these and any other vegetables, go to

http://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp/search/

and enter the name of the food you’re trying to find out about. If you have a hard time learning to love these “cabbages without heads,” as Barbara Kafka calls them, you can try what Anna likes to do, which is pretend they’re not there. To that end, you can slice them thinly, sautee them until they wilt, and hide them in meatloaf, meatballs, hamburgers, or casserole of most any sort. This is the kind of thing they tell you to do to trick your kids into eating healthy food, and it works great for tricking yourself, too, if that’s what needs to happen. And may we also remind you that absolutely everything is good if you deep-fry it (though perhaps that’s not the best habit to get into).

Pak choi is another leafy green, pretty much just a small bok choi. Recently, we cut some in half, marinated them in sesame-ginger salad dressing, then grilled them. Delicious. They can burn pretty quickly on the grill, though, so keep your eye on them. The birds have been after our pak choi, so while they’ll taste fine, they’re maybe  a little bit ugly. That’s ok, we love them just the same :).

So we’ll see you all tomorrow. We’ll remind you one more time, though it seems you’ve mostly got it figured out: 12-2PM and 4-6PM, and bring your own bags! And in case you haven’t heard it enough times (!) – don’t forget that we’ve got eggs!

One last thing; yet another reminder 🙂 – we’ll take your empty egg cartons as well as any plastic produce bags you get from the store. We’ll wash the bags ourselves so you don’t need to worry about it.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: