Monday, July 29, 2013

Week 5: Something Else

Remember the week two post? I said the weather was getting "normal"? Apparently I jinxed things because since then we have seen a spike of 91 degrees (the recorded high on the 18th of July) and a low of 41, which was recorded sometime this very morning.

Of course, today turned out to be beautiful. I am not going to mention what tomorrow might bring for fear of throwing things out of whack.

I will say that the extreme swings have been a challenge for the garden. The heat slowed down the cold weather crops (like the favas, which are recovering - slowly) then the cold came in and stalled the warm weather lovers.

As a result, the first round of very promising fava flowers came and went with no beans to follow, and the cucumber plants have been covered with these for almost a week and a half now:

Cute, but not ready to pick. 

So, the week 5 share will not include favas or cucumbers.

It will include: Frisee Endive, Kale, Snow Peas, Basil, Gilfeather Turnips (which are actually a rutabaga), Scallions, Parsley or Sorrel, Fresh herbs or Edible Flowers, and Something Else.

The share or two during the transition season - as we shift between the spring greens and the summer fruiting vegetables - are always the hardest to balance, but this year has reached a whole new level. So, we have "Something Else" in the shares this week. We have a little bit of a few warmer season things (beets, carrots, cauliflower, zucchini, etc) but not enough of any one of them to put in all of the shares, so one of the items will be a surprise this week.

Or, maybe, Surprise!
The gilfeather turnips, which are in fact especially delicious rutabaga, are making their first appearance at Wintergreen Farm this year. They are a Slow Food Ark of Taste variety and, now that I have tasted them, I think they are worth the acclaim. We've actually been eating, and enjoying, them raw right in the field. They are also fantastic cooked. If you need some rutabaga recipe ideas, click here. The greens are like tender kale, the roots will store best if you cut them off, but we'll leave them on for you. Please eat them!!

I would wager that you'd all like another endive recipe idea (or two). Try pasta salad, if you haven't yet. Cut up a head of endive and toss it into your favorite pasta salad recipe. It's seriously good.

So is this.
Frisee with Cherries and Feta

We were all raised on flavorless lettuce, so I know it can be really hard to figure out how to eat assertive salad greens. The key is to pair them with other assertive flavors, as in this salad recipe.
  • 1 head frisee endive
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • salt, pepper, and herbs to taste
  • about 8 ounces fresh cherries
  • about 2 ounces crumbled feta
Chop the endive into bite sized pieces, if you aren't sure how to go about that, click here. Though don't leave quite as much core behind as the woman in the video does, the white bits at the bottom are the sweetest part.

Whisk together the olive oil and balsamic vinegar, add salt and pepper to taste. You can leave the dressing at that or add a teaspoon or so of herbs. I used tarragon. Thyme would be good.

Pour the dressing over the endive, and toss to coat. Cover and place the endive in the refrigerator. At this point you are going to allow the dressed endive to rest for 15 minutes or so. The rest mellows the bitterness and evens out the flavor of the salad.

While the endive rests, pit and halve the cherries. Toss the cherries and the crumbled feta with the frisee just before serving.

No comments:

Post a Comment