Hey all, welcome to week "3" of Winter CSA!!! We've got an interesting share for you this week, as Farmer Jen put so well last week, we're definitely getting creative. But, along with that creativity came a realization for me as a farmer and an (avid) eater, that eating seasonally in places where it (sometimes) gets cold enough to kill most crops, you have to rely on the varieties and practices that are tough enough to withstand such extremes. That means as eaters we have to deal with thicker skins, tougher leaves, edible parts hidden by inedible parts...etc. All of this just looks like more work, but if we remove the fact that it's inconvenient for us from our minds, we can realize how much better and more rewarding it is to roast a frost-sweetened turnip, or sautee some tough braising greens in February (hint hint) than it is to eat a flavorless tomato. This is a journey we're taking together, we learn to grow things better and hopefully figure out how to close these hunger gaps, and you, our biggest supporters so graciously learn alongside us. Thanks for coming along with us!! Don't work too hard, happy eating!
BRAISING MIX: A mix of kale, mustard, and chicory, that works beautifully as a side simply sauteed with oil and salt on high heat until wilted.
GOLDEN GLOBE TURNIP: One of our hardier roots that made it through the cold unscathed. Roast this baby along with a mix of other winter vegetables (perhaps some purple potatoes), some oil, salt, pepper, rosemary, oregano....mmmmm...for an easy side.
STYRIAN SEED PUMPKIN: This pretty green and yellow pumpkin was bred so that its seeds don't have the tough outer hull on them, making them perfect roasting and snacking. If you cut it open, scoop out the seeds like it's a jack-o-lantern, clean the seeds up a bit in a sieve over the sink to get all the gunk off of them. Once you have a bowl of (mostly) clean seeds there are tons of recipes out there for sweet, salty, spicy, whatever type of flavorful goodness you prefer on your crunchy, healthy snack. I prefer to do something like this so that the seeds get saturated with the salty brine before I roast them in the oven.
SALSIFY (Large only): This lesser known root is a relative of the parsnip and has a sweet, subtle flavor. Originally cultivated in the Mediterranean, it was traditionally boiled or steamed and then added to soups as a thickener or simply mashed and served as a puree. If you want to get geeky about it here is an in-depth resource about it. Otherwise I'd recommend just peeling them and adding them to the other veggies you're seasoning and roasting.
DRIED JIMMY NARDELLOS (Large only): This is one of our creative additions this week, which Chef Kerri recommends you remove the stems and then add them to a sauce or soup while simmering to allow them to rehydrate before being blended smooth, or they can be crushed and added to soups and sauces as a homemade paprika! Very Flavorful!
SHALLOTS (Large only, not pictured): Friendly allium to round out any meal, not quite an onion, not quite garlic, just right :)