It’s courgette season! Or zucchini, summer squash, whichever you prefer it’s delicious and infinity variable. Check out a former blog post and read on for new summer recipe.
Pasta is an easy summer option and last week we test drove this Zucchini Butter Pasta from Smitten Kitchen. Uses basil from your box, and shredded zucchini reduced to a velvety sauce. We used a green variety, but would be gorgeous with yellow!
Zucchini is also a great choice grilled! An easy peasy side to whatever protein you’re cooking up on the BBQ. With all these great options, no reason to have them stack up on you – so dive in!
After a cold, wet start, things are starting to pop around here! And folks may find their boxes to be a little hefty and hard to finish, especially if they have their own garden going on the side. It really is a shame though, to have that good food go to waste. What to do?!?!
For situations like this, the freezer is your best friend! But before you throw your excess produce in a freezer bag, you have to take just one step to prep them for cryostorage. It’s important to kill the bacteria that can start decay, even in the freezer. You might be familiar with blanching before freezing, but we find this affects quality and flavor (ie, soggy and bland) plus loss of nutrients, and have found a better way.
For harder veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, pea pods, zucchini – wash, cut into your preferred sized pieces, toss with olive oil and roast for 5 minutes on a sheet pan at 475. Cool. Bag. Freeze. You can easily save just one head of broccoli, or pounds of it. The coolest part is, when you pull it out for dinner someday, dump the frozen bits on your sheet pan, and roast at the same temp and time (and check for doneness). Voila! Delicious, caramelized roasted goodness!
For greens like spinach, mustard, kale – wash and coarsely chop. Put the lot into a microwave safe bowl and nuke for a couple of minutes, checking along the way, until soft and reduced. Cool to touch then squeeze the excess liquid out (save for smoothies!) chop again if you want a finer texture, pop into a freezer bag, flatten and freeze.
Sugar snaps are one of the highlights of the season, so crisp and sweet! Typically eaten out of hand, or chopped to top The Salad, we forget sometimes that they can also be cooked. While ours is the sesame version, another classic pairing is with mint.
Collards are making an appearance in your boxes this week! Often cooked down for hours with a ham hock, collards have the reputation of being tough and unyielding. Not so! Scroll down to find our favorite version of this super-nutritious superfood.
Welcome summer! The season perfectly captured in the aroma and flavor of a ripe strawberry. If yours actually make it into your house, we have some tips for an easy treat. We’ve dropped a few springs of fresh mint into your box as well this week. Simply core and slice your berries, folding a tiny bit of sugar (if desired), and leave to macerate on your counter while you chop your mint. If you’d to get a little fancy, stack your washed mint leaves, roll into a cigar, and slice across to create thin strips. Otherwise, chop finely, and gently mix into your strawberries. Put into some pretty bowls (I use teacups) and serve plain or as you like with cream. Or you can whip up some buttermilk shortbread. I like to freeze leftover shortbread to be ready for any other summer fruit that comes rolling in. Enjoy!
This weekend, we joined the nation in celebrating Fathers! We marked the occasion with grilled Thai Chicken from our partners at Riverbird Farm, and French Sauteed Greens, featuring Pac Choi, Mustard and Kale. Really, you can use any leafy green you have on hand, garlic, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and red pepper flakes. Comes together in about 10 minutes. That and brown rice made a satisfying and nourishing meal. Plus pie, because you know, Father’s Day 🙂
Those of you who have been following for a while no doubt remember The Salad. A dinner entree so yummy and versatile that it’s a weekly mainstay in our house from the first spring greens to the last gasp of summer. Constantly changing and beautiful to behold, it’s part celebration, part creativity and nourishing in every respect.
Last week’s version had all the greens, asparagus (blanched with the noodles), leftover chicken, the last overwintered carrot, mint, lemon balm, chives. The week before included chopped mushrooms. Raid the fridge, use what you like and make it your own.
Dressing (serves 2-3):
1/4 cup peanut oil
2 tsp dark sesame oil
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp mirin
2 Tbsp lime juice
Gather a bunch of salad greens: lettuces, spinach, mustard, Tatsoi, Pac Choi, turnip and radish greens, etc. Tear a healthy amount and toss with a few Tbsps of the dressing. Make a base of the salad on your plate. Top with a handful of cooked soba noodles. Layer chopped radish, turnip, snap peas, asparagus, or crunchy goodness of your choice. Garnish with cooked chicken, pork, steak, fish, egg or vegan protein (leftovers from weekend grilling!). Dust with a healthy amount of chopped herbs: chives, basil, mint, cilantro, etc. Chopped nuts or seeds are welcome. Chive or borage flowers a decorative plus. Spoon more dressing on top. Take a picture. Enjoy!
Spring is the season for greens! In addition to lettuce, you’ll find your box has Pac Choi, Radicchio, Tatsoi, and Mustard Greens. If these are unfamiliar to you – don’t despair! The internet is full of tips and recipes, and we’ve got a few here. Spring greens are a tonic to the body following the winter – bursting with flavor and nutrition! One way to use them is to add them to whatever else you happen to be eating: spun in your smoothie (Tatsoi), burrowed into burritos (Pac Choi), or layered in your lasagne (Mustard Greens). One of my favorite ways to start the day includes sauteed greens with an egg on top.
Some people love the little bite Radicchio brings as an addition to their salads, others not so much. If you’re not a fan of assertive flavors – fear not! Cook’s Magazine suggests soaking shredded leaves for 30 minutes in water while you’re prepping the rest of your meal, et viola!
This weekend we made 10 minute Pac Choi which was an immediate hit – so delicious and instagram-worthy gorgeous! With just a few pantry ingredients, it’s a keeper for us, and hopefully for you!
Check out the plant list for this week’s selection. Lots of great choices for your kitchen garden! Plus EGGS – $7/doz. Stop by the farm this Saturday and Sunday, 9am-2pm. Cash or check only please. 928 Wilson St. NE.
Check out the plant list for this week’s selection. Plus EGGS – $7/doz. Stop by the farm this Saturday and Sunday, 9am-2pm. Cash or check only please. 928 Wilson St. NE. Heads up, next weekend (May 21 and 22) will be the last plant sale of the season.