|Sunburst pattypan, the most photogenic of our|
We'll be taking a lot to the Keweenaw Co-op this week, so as not to bury the members in summer squash, but members will definitely get some too and the squash should keep coming until frost. Start posting you favorite summer squash and zucchini recipes on the facebook page now!
This week's share will also include: Head Lettuce, Chard, Thai Basil, Beets, Fennel, Sorrel, Cucumber(s?), Tomatoes etc. from the hoophouse, and another selection of herbs or edible flowers.
Several people have asked about the Thai basil at pick-up. And because it is new to so many of you, we decided that everyone should have a chance to try it. That's just the way we CSA farmers roll. I LOVE to use Thai Basil in rice noodle dishes, especially with eggplant. Try sauteing some tomato, summer squash, and eggplant, if you have it, lightly in peanut oil and your favorite soy sauce (add a bit of five spice powder, ginger, garlic, fish sauce or other favorite Asian flavors as well). When the vegetables are just finished cooking, pull the pan off the heat and stir in a generous handful of coarsely chopped Thai Basil. Serve this over rice noodles that have soaked in hot water for ten minutes (or prepared according to the package) and dressed with peanut oil, soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, sugar or honey, and garlic. If you aren't a rice noodle fan, serve it over rice with the same sauce on the side for diners to season with.
|Thai Basil, with its dusky purple hue.|
|U.P. Fennel is never quite as large and luxurious as|
California grown, but it makes up for that with FLAVOR.
Glazed Pork Chops with Braised Fennel
Use a jam that is fruity and acidic. Apricot, peach, and raspberry all work very well. Blueberry would not. I've made this with homemade cherry tomato jam with particularly good results.
- 1 Tablespoon Olive oil
- 4 pork loin chops
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup jam
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 medium fennel bulb, bulb and stalks chopped into bite sized pieces, fronds reserved
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a pan that is large enough to hold all four pork chops in a single layer.
Lay the pork chops in the pan, sprinkle both sides of each chop with salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Briefly brown both sides of each chop, about 30 seconds per side.
Stir together the jam and balsamic vinegar. Turn the heat down to low. Spoon the jam and vinegar mixture evenly over the chops. Allow the pork to cook for approximately five minutes on each side, spooning glaze over the chops whenever they are turned, and frequently as they cook.
When the chops have reached your desired degree of doneness, remove them from the pan and keep them warm on a serving dish.
Turn the heat back up to medium and add the chopped fennel bulb and stalks to the glaze and pan drippings that remain in the cooking pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about five minutes or until the fennel is just tender. Overcooking the fennel will cause it to lose much of its unique flavor.
Meanwhile, finely chop about half a cup of the reserved fennel fronds.
Arrange the cooked fennel bulb and stalks over the pork chops and sprinkle the minced fennel fronds over the entire dish.
|I have got to hook up with a food photographer...|