Monday, October 7, 2013

Week 15: Happy Birthday to Me!

It's my birthday.

Seriously, right now. Earlier we celebrated by swimming at the AmericInn and hiking the Summit Peak Loop. The color in the Porkies is perfect today, by the way.

Actually, this photo shows the cakes I made for Seda's birthday
party a few weeks ago. But you get the idea.

As I type Scott and Seda are preparing a birthday "cake" for me. It's an apple-carrot-green tomato crisp. You'll find the recipe at the bottom of this post.

And now you know three items to expect in the share this week. If you recall, the last two shares of the season are extra big. This is the first of those shares. You can expect: Apples, Green Tomatoes, Carrots, Daikon Radishes, Tomatoes (ripe ones), Beets, Onions, Rutabaga or Kohlrabi, Winter Squash, Celeriac, a choice of Herbs, Gold Ball Turnips or Winter Radishes, and Kale or Chard or Dandelion Greens.

The only new thing this week is daikon, which I will get back to in a second. The celeriac may be a challenge for some of you - perhaps you still have some lurking from last week. If you need some ideas for using it, you are in luck. I just went crazy pinning celeriac recipes on pinterest, you can find those if you click here. You could also add some celeriac to the fall soup recipe below.

The daikon is another storable radish (like the winter radishes - incidentally, if you want to store any of your root veggies be sure to remove the greens first and store the roots in the crisper or some other cold, humid place) and can be used similarly. The daikons are nice, because they are full of flavor - like the other winter radishes - but have a crisp juicy texture, more like that of the french breakfast radishes. If you need some more specific ideas, I pinned a few recipes here

Now, I have two recipes for you, just to make sure you can use everything in your shares.

The first is a thick soup. Scott invented it the other day. It is a lovely combination of savory and sweet, and filling with with a hunk of whole grain bread.

The second is my birthday crisp. I invented this recipe, mostly because I still really want to come up with a tasty dessert that features green tomatoes, and Scott made it. I would say that it's pretty tasty, but maybe a bit too sweet for my taste. I understand that he had a four year old helper, and they may not have followed the recipe exactly...Still, next time I would probably only use a quarter of a cup of sugar in the filling. Proceed according to your tastes.

Fall Soup
  • 2 small or 1 large orange fleshed winter squash, halved and baked (Scott left the seeds in and it turned out great - he has a thing for squash seeds. You can take them out if you don't share his thing.)
  • 6 large carrots, chopped
  • One bunch (6-10) gold ball turnips, chopped
  • 1 medium beet, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cups apple cider (or enough to cover the above ingredients)
  • Salt, Cinnamon, and Nutmeg to taste
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
Combine all of the ingredients, through the cider, in a large pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Turn the temperature to simmer and simmer until the vegetables are tender.

Once tender, puree the soup. We use an immersion blender (you should get one if you don't have one) but you could also use a regular blender or a food processor.

After pureeing, reheat the soup if necessary, and season to taste. Add butter to finish the soup.

Birthday Crisp

Scott made my birthday crisp in his cast iron pan.
Because he loves his pan as much as he loves me.

For the filling:
  • 2 large or 4 medium carrots, sliced in 1/4 inch slices
  • 1/4 cup water or apple cider
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg (or much less than that if you are using freshly ground)
  • 2-3 apples, sliced thickly
  • 2-3 green tomatoes, sliced thickly
For the topping:
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Place the carrots, water or cider, sugar, and spices in a large saucepan (or cast iron skillet if you are awesome like me husband). Bring to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer for about five minutes. Then add the apples and green tomatoes. Continue to simmer until the apples are just tender.

Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the topping.

When the filling is ready, transfer it to a pie plate (or leave it in your kick ass skillet) and sprinkle the topping evenly over it.

Bake until the topping is golden, approximately 15 minutes.

Sing happy birthday to me :)

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