Well the much hyped snowstorm of the year last week turned into 4 inches of fluff in Craftsbury last week. But this week we finally got our share. We're glad to have it, ski trails needed some refreshing. If any of you have not experienced it we have sublime cross country skiing in Craftsbury. The Craftsbury Outdoor Center does a great job, they have a beautiful new touring center, but the best part is that we have trails that wind all through the Village. You can travel through town here on your skis and even to neighboring Greensboro where the trails meet the Highland Lodge circuit of trails. It's worth a trip to experience.
Our crew always most impresses me this time of year. They put in alot of unglamorous hours in the washhouse, washing, culling, and packing storage crops. It's hard, physical work in a chilly, damp environment. They are a committed devoted group that always stick with it until the job is done, and sometimes that is 8 o clock at night. Next time you're enjoying a carrot take a moment to appreciate the dedication of Emilie, Molly, Tim C, Tim F, Christopher, Alexis, Phil, Allison, Felipe, and Niles. Thanks, guys!
The washhouse crew: Back row: Christopher, Tim F, Tim C, Niles, Molly
Front row: Felipe, Allison, Alexis
Missing: Emilie and Phil
Last summer we were fortunate to buy a very nice gutter connected greenhouse for pennies on the dollar at auction. We are now planning its erection for this summer. This greenhouse, through the use of energy curtains that retain heat will allow us to moderately heat greenhouse space all winter so we can keep you supplied with lettuce, kale, chard, pac choi and more all winter long.~Pete
T-shirts and Bags are going out this week
For those members who ordered a Localvore or Veggie Only share and paid by September 21st your t-shirts or bags are going out this week.
They will be at your site in a bag with your name on it. Please remember to pick it up when you get your share.
If you didn't qualify for a free shirt or bag but would like to purchase one let me know!
The Spring Sharestarts in just 2 weeks!
Share Period: February 18th thru June 10th, 2015
In order to receive your first share on 2/18
payment must be received at the farm by Friday, February 13th
Join now!Start off your spring right with weekly deliveries of winter greens from our greenhouses and shoots house, lots of staples like potatoes, carrots, onions, beets and cabbage, plus frozen summer goodies like corn, sweet peppers, spinach and winter squash that round out the diversity. We provided greens every single week of the year last year, and this spring will be no exception.
As we head into the end of March and into early April crops begin to vigorously grow with increased daylight - winter greens and flavorful herbs are in abundance. Mesclun, baby spinach and arugula, chard, pac choi and various varieties of Asian greens begin to appear in shares. From late April into May you can expect a wide variety of these greens plus spring vegetables like salad turnips, baby beets, scallions and hardy herbs like dill and parsley.
In late May and into June warm season vegetables like European cucumbers, basil, and spring onions make their way into the share along with tender greens harvested from the field. Throughout the spring months we will continue to include preserved and frozen items to keep things interesting.
Storage and Use Tips
We have shoots again for all your salad needs. See below for this weeks' shoots recipe!
Adirondack Red potatoes have a dark pink skin and dark pink insides. The pigments in these two varieties offer higher levels of antioxidants than tradition white or yellow potatoes. The Adirondack Red is quite versatile being great for boiling, roasting and baking. At this time of year potatoes are best stored in the fridge in a plastic bag.
Parsnips have a nutty-sweet taste and a tender-hearty texture that is entirely distinct. For centuries, parsnips were a more common staple than the potato—and deservedly so. Satisfying, versatile, and highly nutritious, these delicious roots make a terrific base to any meal. Peel larger parsnips, and cut out the core if it seems woody. However you slice or chop parsnips, be sure to make all the pieces relatively the same size, ensuring an evenly cooked dish. Refrigerate unwashed parsnips in a loosely wrapped or perforated plastic bag for up to two weeks.
We have green cabbage for you this week. Wrapped loosely in a plastic bag, cabbage will keep in the crisper drawer for several weeks. Discard any exterior leaves that may have begun to tear and/or discolor before using.
Frozen spinach is great for casseroles, lasagnas, quiches etc. Thaw it, squeeze out the excess liquid and add it in. Or let it thaw on counter til it softens up enough to saw with a knife, and saw off section to use a lesser amount in a dish. You can put the remainder back in freezer. This is really great in pasta or even added to smoothies.
Large share members will also get our frozen broccoli. This was blanched for a minute or two in our kitchen before cooling and freezing. It is not a substitute for fresh broccoli in salads or places where you really need the veggies to be crisp. But they are fantastic for pastas, burritos, casseroles, quiches, soup etc. To reheat, bring some water to a boil in a pot and put in all or a part of the bag of broccoli (you can saw off chunks of frozen if you don't want to use the whole thing). Heat for 2-5 minutes, testing each minute after 2 minutes to see if it has reached the tenderness you seek.
This week we have all the makings for a pizza!
Elmore Mountain Bread has made up pizza dough for us. This is a large ball with enough to make 2 medium pizzas, or 1 large one. The dough is made with Fresh Stoneground Redeemer Wheat, Milanaise white flour, water, extra virgin olive oil, sea salt, and yeast. The dough is coming to you frozen so you can thaw it out for dinner that night or throw back into your freezer for a future pizza week.
Here are some tips for cooking your pizza. Use within four to five hours of thawing (ready to go the night you pick up share or store in freezer for later use). Coat a smooth surface with flour and cornmeal (just flour is ok) so that the dough does not stick to the surface. Form dough into ball and flatten with heels of palms. Stretch dough with hands or use a rolling pin to form shape of baking pan (I use a cookie sheet so I form it into a square). Once dough is slightly stretched on surface you can stretch dough in the air with hands by making two fists held together with dough on top. Move each hand up, down and out turning the dough clockwise. Each dough can be stretched to a 16" round, for thicker crust make smaller. If you like light fluffy crust I put my baking sheet on the top of my oven while preheating and let rise. Otherwise set aside in neutral area till oven is ready at 425F. Cook 12-14 minutes until crust is golden brown and cheese bubbles.
To accompany the pizza dough is Pete's Greens Pizza Sauce. It's made with our own organic tomatoes, onions, garlic, olive oil, salt, sugar, oregano, thyme, basil, & black pepper. It's also coming to you frozen for easy delivery. You can defrost and put on your pizza right away or freeze it for later use. You can of course use this on pasta too.
Brand new this week is Cellars Shredded Cheese. This is a new product for them, and at this point it's only available to commercial kitchens, so we are really fortunate to have it in our share. This batch of cheese is made with award winning Alpha Tolman cheese all shredded up and ready for whatever you can dream up. It would be amazing on a pizza, in some eggs, or made into fondue. There's a recipe on the package for fondue so be sure to check it out!
This week we have a Pete's chicken for you. These chickens were raised here at the farm, got lots of fresh air and exercise, and are tasty and nutritious. I don't think I've shared with you my favorite way of cooking these birds yet. I throw the chicken into the crockpot with lots of veggie scraps (onions, carrots, celery) and spices, and cover with water. Set it on low for 8 hours and at the end of the day you'll have lots of chicken broth as well as shredded chicken. I keep some broth out to use right away but freeze most of it in 4 cup increments in Ziploc bags or large yogurt containers. I use the shredded chicken in a Mexican feast one night (tacos and burritos), chicken pot pie or soup another night, and even have some leftover to add to salads all week. You could also freeze some of the shredded meat if you can't get through it all in a few days. You can get creative and add whatever spices you have on hand, or lemons and ginger, or whatever you've got!
The rib chops and Hot Italian Sausage came from the pigs we raised at the farm last year. They roamed free on 20 acres and enjoyed the good life renovating land, eating pasture, insects and minerals below the soil surface and taking care of our leftovers from the wash house. This meat is some of the highest quality pork around given the very high ratio of plants the piggies ate compared to grain.
Some of you will receive hot Italian sausage and some will receive Chorizo. Both sausages were made from our piggies grown right here on the farm. Both have a nice spicy kick to them, but nither is too spicy.
Rib chops are a pork chop cut from the rib roast. They can be cut boneless or with a baby back rib attached. Rib attached delivers more flavor when cooking. Because they are lean, they benefit from brining or wrapped when baking or baked in a sauce or cooked in some way to retain moisture. Chops are great because you can do so many things with them. They are just waiting to be flavored up in a recipe.
The organic steaks come from our friend and neighbor Seth Gardner at McKnight Farm in East Montpelier. Seth is a long time organic dairy farmer who regularly supplies beef to our meat share. You'll receive either Porterhouse, Rib, or T-Bone Steaks. Please marinate these steaks before cooking to help them retain moisture! They differ substantially from grocery store feedlot beef in that they will be much leaner. But they are super flavorful and contain many more good for you nutrients as a result of their grazing.
Changes to Your Delivery?
If you will be away some upcoming week, and need to make changes to your share delivery, let us know at least 1 week before the change. You can have your share donated to the Food Pantry, or you can skip your share delivery and you will retain a credit on your account toward the purchase of your next share.
Asian-Style Red Meets Green Salad
Last spring we had a shoots recipe contest to get some ideas from our members. Here's the winning entry of the contest from member Emily Donaldson.
1 head cabbage, finely sliced
1/4 c red onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
4 medium-sized carrots, coarsely shredded
1 bag Pete's Greens shoots mix (about 2.5 cups)
1/2 c toasted almonds, crushed or sliced
1/2 c dried cranberries
3 tbs toasted sesame seeds
3/4 c balsamic vinegar
1 tbs sugar
2 tbs sesame oil
1.5 tbs soy sauce
3 tbs orange juice
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground black pepper (or to taste)
Combine the cabbage, onion, pepper, carrots, shoots, almonds, cranberries and sesame seeds in a large salad bowl. In a separate small bowl, mix the sugar into the balsamic vinegar with a fork until it dissolves. Pour this mixture over the salad, then add the sesame oil, soy sauce, orange juice, garlic powder and pepper. Toss thoroughly until well mixed and enjoy! Makes roughly 12 cups of salad.
Roast Chicken with Caramelized Shallots
I found this recipe on David Leibovitz's blog. He's a renown pastry chef and cook residing in Paris. His blog is filled with great recipes including this one adapted from French Farmhouse Cookbook by Susan Herrmann Loomis.
I use a whole chicken cut into eight pieces; two legs, two thighs, and I cut each breast piece in half, crosswise, keeping the wings attached. You could also just use eight of your favorite chicken pieces.
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
4 large shallots, peeled and minced
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
One whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces
one generous handful of coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1. Preheat the oven to 425ºF (220ºC).
2. In a large baking dish, one which will hold all the chicken pieces in a single layer, mix the olive oil, vinegar, soy sauce, shallots, and some salt and pepper.
3. Toss the chicken in the mixture, so they’re completely coated with the shallots. Turn the chicken pieces so they are all skin side up.
4. Roast the chicken for about twenty minutes, until it starts to brown on top. Turn the pieces of chicken over. Scrape any juices and shallots over the chicken that may be clinging to the pan, and bake for another twenty minutes, or until the pieces of chicken are cooked through and the shallots are well-caramelized.
5. Remove from oven and toss in the chopped parsley, then serve.
Colcannon (Irish Potato Salad)
A member sent me this recipe last week saying it was perfect with last weeks' ingredients. I think it would also work well with this week's! If you don't still have a leek you can substitute a yellow onion or another shallot. Use your (thawed) frozen spinach in place of the kale and skip the green onions if you don't have them. Some of the Cellars' shredded cheese would also be stellar in this!
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup whole milk
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 large shallots, thinly sliced
1 large leek-halved and thinly sliced
1 bunch kale, stemmed and coarsely chopped
1 head cabbage, cored and coarsely chopped
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoons salt
2/3 cups chopped green onion tops
Cut and steam the potatoes until tender. Return to the still hot pot and add 1/4 cup butter, milk, kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoons pepper. Mash together.
Melt the remaining butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add shallots and leeks. Saute until they begin to soften. Add the kale and toss until soft and wilted but still bright green, about 3 minutes. Add the cabbage and toss until tender-crisp, about 8 minutes. Sprinkle with nutmeg, salt and the remaining pepper.
Mix the cabbage and mashed potatoes together well. Sprinkle with the green onion slices before serving.
Broccoli, Spinach Pesto, and Cheese Pizza
This pizza is delicious with a little hot italian sausage, sliced garlic, or hot peppers. Add your favorite toppings!
1 pizza dough, thawed
10oz broccoli, thawed
1/2 cup cheese
1# spinach, thawed and drained
1.5 cup walnuts, toasted
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
Coarse salt and ground pepper
Preheat oven to 500 degrees F.
In a food processor, combine spinach, walnuts, oil, and lemon zest. Process until mixture forms a smooth paste, scraping down bowl as needed. Season with salt and pepper.
Roll out dough onto a floured surface, sprinkle flour or cornmeal onto a baking sheet, and transfer dough to the sheet. Spread pesto over the surface of the dough, scatter broccoli over the pesto, and distribute goat cheese on top.
Cook until dough edges are brown, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, slice into wedges and serve immediately.
Spicy Honey-Glazed Parsnips
This might become your go-to side recipe - it goes with everything and is so easy and delicious.
2 pounds parsnips, peeled, cut into 3" lengths, halved, or quartered if large
1/4 cup olive oil
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
2 chiles de árbol, crushed, or 3/4 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
Preheat oven to 450°F. Toss parsnips and oil on a rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast parsnips, tossing occasionally, until tender and deep golden brown in spots, 35–40 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat chiles de árbol, butter, vinegar, and honey in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until butter is melted.
Drizzle chile-honey butter over parsnips and toss to coat.
Braised Wine Green Cabbage
1/2 head cabbage
1 cup carrots finely chopped
1/2 cup shallots finely chopped
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 stick unsalted butter
Shred the cabbage. Peel and dice the carrots and shallots.
Heat olive oil and butter in a pan over a medium heat and cook carrots and shallots for about 5 minutes.
Add white wine and boil for about 45 second to evaporate alcohol.
Add chicken broth and return to boil. Add cabbage to pan, stir and cover 5 minutes or until tender. Drain cabbage, place in a dish and salt and pepper to taste.