2012 CSA week 21October 24, 2012
2012 CSA week 21 October 24th
In The Box
2 lbs Cauliflower
1 bunch Parsnips
1-2 heads scraggly ‘PIC’ Romaine Lettuce
1 bunch Watermelon Radish
1 bunch French Breakfast Radish
1 bunch Russian Kale
1 lb Broccoli (Fremont, York, PAE, Catholic Charities, Green MicroGym, Multnomah only)
1 bunch Baby Fennel (Hawthorne and Sellwood only)
1/2 lb Pimente di Padron Peppers
2 Corno di Toro Peppers
2 Acorn Squash
The farm looks good today. I don’t always feel this way. When the farm is at its most fruitful it is generally at its most chaotic. It is nice to see the order returning as the slowing harvest makes time for clean up and organization. With several good rains behind us the lushness of the valley can be felt again, especially when set against the bright colors of the fall foliage. With four more weeks left for the weekly boxes, I can almost take that deep breath, the one that tells me we made it. Another season passed, another cycle complete, plant, tend, harvest, (lose mind, regain sanity,) plan.
A bumper crop of Cauliflower means you’ll find two pounds in your box today. It was one of those harvests that had us asking “How much cauliflower can we actually put in a box?” Two pounds seemed about right and we sent a lot out to our restaurant customers too. I’m always surprised from one week to the next what will be the in demand vegetable with chefs. This week baby parsnips and cauliflower topped the list with the Russian Kale up there too. It is rewarding to see restaurants embracing seasonal menus more and more as the years pass and I am grateful for the creativity of our chef customers when our availability list thins in the winter months. Be warned…..apparently the Corno di Toro sweet peppers have become jealous of the Padron’s occasional hotness and are putting out their own random spicy fruits! Ryder (4) discovered this while ‘helping’ the crew harvest in the greenhouse yesterday. He bravely continued to eat them relieved that the next few weren’t hot at all. The process of harvesting almost a quarter of an acre of parsnips by hand continues and some of you will find baby parsnips in your box today. We usually reserve these plate-able little treats for restaurants that like to roast them whole, but we had barely enough time to harvest and wash enough for the boxes yesterday.
CROP NOTES AND RECIPES
1. Steam a whole head of cauliflower until it is al dente.
2. Transfer to a shallow dish or broiler-safe container.
3. “Frost” the head of cauliflower with a Dijon-style mustard with herbs mixed in. (or a mustard of your choice)
4. Use the mustard as “glue to adhere your choice of grated cheese.
5. Put under broiler briefly until the cheese is bubbly.
6. Serve immediately.
Whole Wheat Pasta with Cauliflower, Walnuts, and Ricotta Salata from Chez Panisse Vegetables by Alice Waters
2 heads cauliflower
1 medium onion
4 cloves garlic
1 pound whole wheat pasta
extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
1 pinch red peppers flakes
white wine vinegar
½ cup toasted walnuts
4 ounces ricotta salata or feta cheese
Put a large pot of water on to boil. Cut the cauliflower into small flowerets. Peel the onion and slice it very thin. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Put the pasta on to cook. Saute the cauliflower in olive oil in a large saute pan. When the cauliflower begins to soften, season with salt and pepper and add the sliced onion and red pepper flakes. Saute over medium to high heat until the vegetables are brown and tender. The cauliflower should still be slightly crunchy and should not taste steamed. Add the garlic and remove from the heat, tossing and stirring so the garlic doesn’t burn; if it starts to brown, add a splash of water. Add few drops each of vinegar and lemon juice and the toasted walnuts. Taste and correct the seasoning. When the pasta is done, drain and add to the cauliflower, adding enough extra-virgin olive oil to coat the pasta thoroughly, toss together, and serve, with the cheese crumbled over the dish.
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