Last Week’s Newsletter

Here is a very late newsletter for last week. Sorry all for being behind. On Thursday, September 10, you got: tomatoes, turnips, carrots, tomatillos, arugula, dino kale, scallions, and your choice of hot peppers (cayenne, jalepeno, or pepperoncini).

Turnips are a classic fall vegetable that often accompanies pot roast. Another typical way of preparing them is to combine them with potatoes and make mashed potatoes ‘n’ turnips. If you want to make the flavor more exciting than the usual butter, salt, and pepper, you could try adding horseradish, or nutmeg. Maybe not both at once :). Or… maybe both at once would be good! Last week after pickup we made a pizza and we put thin slices of turnips on as one of the toppings.

Tomatillos are related to tomatoes but are NOT just little tomatoes. They have a tangier flavor than tomatoes and their thicker, somewhat waxy skin and firmer flesh lend themselves less to eating raw and whole the way we often do with tomatoes. They are perfect for making fresh salsas and can be used more or less interchangeably in dishes calling for cooked tomatoes. Try roasting them before you add them to dishes for a fuller flavor.

Arugula is a peppery-flavored salad green that people tend to feel very strongly about, either pro or con. You can use it instead of basil to make an unusual pesto – and if you have too much, you can freeze the pesto in ice cube trays and pop some out to use whenever you need it. When we made our pizza last week, we put a layer of arugula between the sauce and the cheese. Here’s an idea: put tomato slices on a bed of fresh arugula, sautee some garlic in olive oil, then drizzle the hot oil over the tomatoes and arugula. Taste the arugula first to make sure that you like it enough to eat it in such a nearly unadulterated fashion.

Finally, here is a recipe for a kale salad that uses raw kale (!) but against all odds is completely delicious. It’s quick to prepare but you do need to do one step the night before. This recipe came from Bon Apetit magazine, courtesy of epicurious.com.

Kale Salad with Pinenuts, Currants, and Parmesan

Makes 6-8 servings

  • 2 tablespoons dried currants
  • 7 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar, divided
  • 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 bunches kale (about 1 pound), center ribs and stems removed, leaves thinly sliced crosswise
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, lightly toasted
  • Parmesan cheese shavings

Place currants in small bowl; add 5 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar. Let soak overnight. Drain currants.

Whisk remaining 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar, rice vinegar, honey, oil, and salt in large bowl. Add kale, currants, and pine nuts; toss to coat. Let marinate 20 minutes at room temperature, tossing occasionally. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle cheese shavings over salad and serve.

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