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Archive for the 'recipe' Category

blueberries

did you order blueberries?  are you totally overwhelmed with what to do with them?  Well, other than eat them straight…

The first thing we did with our blueberries was weigh out half into gallon freezer bags and pop them into the freezer for eating later on.  But what else?

first up, Alton Brown’s blueberry muffin recipe!  This is really the ur-muffin recipe as far as my family is considered.  (though I have to say, don’t bother with cake flour. All Purpose flour works just fine–and is what’s called for in the book-version of the recipe.)  And as a bonus, the muffins actually work better using frozen berries!

Jonathan's blueberry muffins

Second option?  Blueberry boy bait! This is like a blueberry coffee cake, and it’s delicious.  Really, you can’t go wrong with anything Smitten Kitchen does.

similar to boy bait, but much much fruitier is the blueberry streusel cake from the late, great Gourmet. This one has won over even the stubborn “I don’t like cooked fruit” people.

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Kale and other greens

Kale’s a tough one sometimes, at least for me. Lettuce, I know what to do with.  Chard and spinach, same thing.  Kale and other bitter greens, I think I’ve finally figured them out.

I wash them well (I wash them twice to get all the grit out of the curly leaves).  Then I heat some olive oil up in a large saute pan over low heat, and dump in a ton of sliced garlic–like 3-4 cloves of it minimum.  While that’s heating up, I strip the stems out, rough chop the leaves, throw them in the pan with a couple of pinches of salt, turn up the heat a bit and saute them until very wilted.  Throw a few grinds of pepper over top and eat!

I used to leave the stems in, or chop them as well, like I do with chard, but it finally dawned on me that those were the most bitter part and to strip them out first.  That made all the difference!

Here’s a great step-by-step how to on freezing kale from notmartha.org (a great site if you haven’t seen it). Plus, her tip on how to stripping the stems and chop the leaves is a great one!

How do you all prepare the bitter greens?

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Lettuce Soup

Member Alicia writes:

I made this last night and thought it might be something good to post to the website or email out to everyone since we’ve been getting so much lettuce! Especially for those that aren’t crazy about salads.

Lettuce Soup (from Recipezaar.com)
Ingredients
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
2 heads lettuce, finely chopped
3/4 cup milk
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups broth (vegetable or chicken)
1 teaspoon paprika
1 dash nutmeg
salt and pepper

Directions
1. Cook onion in butter till soft.
2. Add lettuce, then flour, then broth.
3. Boil 1 minute, stirring.
4. Pour in blender and add milk, nutmeg, paprika and salt and pepper to taste.
5. Blend for a minute, then return to pot and reheat.

Its not as gross as it sounds, its very similar tasting to a cream of broccoli soup though not as creamy. Went very well with some crusty bread and cheese : )

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Radish Recipe

Member Amy writes:

I have to admit, I’ve never been a radish lover, but I came across this recipe and I think I’m hooked! (Or perhaps it was the fact that these radishes were so fresh and organically grown!) They’re much milder when they’re cooked, so if you love that bite, you might want to stick with raw. If you want to share this link, it’s the last recipe on the bottom of the page (Radishes with Pasta and Radish Greens). http://www.urbanext.uiuc.edu/veggies/radish1.html Thanks again for this great new experience!

Amy Richardson

Thanks Amy!

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Escarole

Escarole, and the curly frisee that was the other choice, are members of the chicory family. Other chicories are endive and radicchio. These are hearty greens with a firm texture and slightly bitter taste.

Escarole can be eaten raw in salads, but it is best cooked. Slice into ribbons and cook quickly to retain its edge or saute low and slow with some garlic scapes to sweeten.

escarole

Escarole is famously paired with white beans in soups and casseroles. It can withstand a lot of cooking and a lot of strong flavors.

Frisee (not pictured), should be eaten raw in salds

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Radishes

Radishes are eaten raw. They range in flavor from a mild spice to full-flegged heat, but a radish is always cool and crisp. They are a great way to wake up the palate on hot, humid Jersey days. True believers just rinse and eat like a carrot. The French arrange them in bowls and dip in butter and salt. The English slice them paper thin and put into tea sandwiches. They are excellent sliced into salads or grated into slaws (see kohlrabi post). They are a colorful, spicy addition to a vegetable & dip platter.

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Garlic Scapes

garlic scapes

Welcome to one of the perks of CSA membership. The garlic scape is the top of the garlic plant, sort of like a big chive, but with more garlic flavor. Scapes keep very well in the fridge. Chop them and saute them much like you would use garlic. I have cooked the whole thing slowly in olive oil and they become soft and mellow. You can throw a whole scape into pasta sauce or soup. Experiment and enjoy.

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Tatsoi

Tatsoi is an Asian mustard green. It can be treated like any Asian green–chopped and stir fried with oil and garlic. Throw in some ginger and soy sauce if you like. You could stir fry this with some of the bok choy and garlic scapes. Don’t forget to cook the stems.

I like Asian greens quickly wilted in some oil with garlic and ginger. I throw them in a bowl and top with some dumplings, a splash of dumpling sauce and a sprinkling of flax seeds.

tatsoi

You can get a large assortment of frozen Chinese and Japanese dumplings at East West Market on Bellville Ave. in Bloomfield. I like the pork and leek, but the have vegetable, shrimp, chicken, etc. Head to the sauce ailse and pick up the handy dumpling sauce. Easy peasy and really good.

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Snap Peas

Also called Sugar Snap Peas, these are one of the pea varieties with an edible shell. They make a good snack and are tasty with a dip. Chop them and add to salads. I put them into a potato salad once and it was really good.

They can also be cooked. Snap off the stem and pull the string to the end. Cook with a little water and butter until bright green and tender, 2-3 minutes.

snap peas

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English Peas

English peas, or shelling peas, are one of the harbingers of spring. Nothing quite matches the sweet crunch of a freshly picked pea. Timing is everything with peas. Pick it too soon and the peas are too small, wait too long and their sugars turn starchy. Heaven forbid you eat a pea several days past its prime–it is hard and bitter. They are also much better shortly after harvesting, so I urge you to eat them up!

english peas

To shell, simply open along the seam and scrape the peas out with your thumb. Collect in a beautiful bowl. Steam ever so slightly–no need to over cook– or shake in a shallow pan of boiling water. A couple of minutes should do it. They will turn bright green. The peas are great as is, but a bit of butter doesn’t hurt.

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