|18th Harvest Week||July 25th - 31st, 2005||
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we are and who we become is dependent in large part on whom
What’s in the box this week: (stuff that’s in one size share that’s not in the other is at the top of its respective list so you can easily see the difference. Remember, small shares will generally have smaller quantities of the duplicate items. – Debbie)
Extra Fruit Option:
Sat Aug 6
Sat. Sept. 17 Permaculture workshop #2 - Water mgmt; swale design/construction
Sat. Sept. 24
Sat. Oct 22
In this week's share I would like to introduce you to a "wild vegetable" which has been eaten for centuries in many parts of the world, it's called Purslane (Portulaca Oleracea) and at this time of year grows readily among our "other" vegetables. Purslane is a multi-stemmed succulent with small, oval leaves (see picture in Debbie’s recipe database). This "exotic wild vegetable" might already be a mainstay in your backyard without you knowing about its rich culinary tradition. The USDA lists purslane as a pervasive weed (the 7th worst worldwide) but to many of us who love its earthy, slightly acidic flavor and crisp, succulent stems and leaves, the word "weed" hardly seems fair. Most of the time we call plants weeds because they appear uninvited almost anywhere, here on the farm I try to coexist instead of fighting them and right now we have a beautiful crop of purslane growing together with a maturing crop of beets. You will probably read this with suspicion thinking ‘Farmer Tom has really lost his mind trying to make us eat weeds’ but I really believe that many of our so-called weeds are actually both tasty and nutritious. Besides the popular purslane, other "culinary weeds" popular among gourmet restaurants and often used as salad greens are lambs quarters, dandelions, mallow, pigweed, thistle, sorrel, and even cattails. So don't be shy about cooking with purslane. Maybe you can look at your weeds with a different eye recognizing that they could be a healthy addition to your diet.
Although Purslane is rarely seen as a cooking vegetable here in the United States, this green has a long and interesting history. English medieval cooks and gardeners loved purslane and the ancient Greeks made flour from purslane seeds and pickled its fleshy stems. Today it's often served fresh in salads, either alone or with other salad greens. Juan tells me that in his hometown in the State of Guanajuato they like to cook purslane (commonly known in Spanish as verdolagas) with chili peppers, eggs and pork. And in China its sharp flavor and slightly slippery quality is valued in combination with noodle dishes. I like to chop clusters of young fresh leaves and combine them with other "sweeter" vegetables such as potatoes, cucumbers, beets, and tomatoes (they're coming). It can also be added to fish, grills and omelets by simply sprinkling the Purslane leaves with coarse salt, lemon juice and olive oil.On a healthier note, recent research has confirmed that purslane is one of the best vegetable sources of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as carotene and vitamin C. No wonder historically purslane was described as a blood cleansing remedy to cure heart and liver problems and also help diabetics. – Tom
For those of you who get the extra fruit option, over the next 2-3 weeks you will be getting beautiful European plums. They are a bit more tart, and in this country are commonly turned into prunes. In Europe it is popular to eat them fresh, or use them to make delicious fruit tarts. If you decide to turn them into prunes you can dry them in the sun on trays.
Lastly (drumroll...) the news we’ve all been waiting for: this week
we are starting to pick our first cherry tomatoes! By next week everyone should
start getting at least a basket as a part of their share. A more prolific melon
harvest will start next week, and sweet corn soon thereafter. Peppers (hot
and sweet) and eggplants are almost ready for harvesting in sufficient quantities
to make it into shares (1-2 weeks), maybe along with the tomatoes my crystal
ball is showing me.
(scroll down for recipes)
from Debbies Kitchen . . Have
a recipe youd like
to share? Contact
4 C chopped cooked beets*
*about 4-5 medium beets, more if smaller.
In a blender or food processor,
combine the beets, apple juice, and buttermilk and purée until
smooth. Transfer to a bowl or storage container and stir in the dill
and scallions or chives. Refrigerate at least 2 hours. Add salt to
taste and serve topped with finely chopped cucumber.
Steamed Broccoli with Skordalia Thessalonike Sauce
Makes 2 generous cups
2 C peeled diced potatoes
Combine potatoes and garlic in a saucepan with water to cover. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until very soft. Drain and transfer to a medium mixing bowl. Mash together potatoes and yogurt with a hand masher (do not do this in a food processor as this makes the texture of the potatoes gluey. Having attempted mashed potatoes in a food processor once I can vouch for this warning! – Debbie). Mash until quite smooth. Stir in the dill, scallions, salt and pepper. Serve immediately at room tem-perature or chill to serve later, allowing it to return to room temperature just before serving.
Moosewood suggests simply
steaming fresh broccoli and then ‘drizzling
the Skor-dalia Thessalonike’ over it.
Summer Squash with Chermoulla
In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients except summer squash and purée to form a smooth sauce. Add salt to taste. Set aside.
Meanwhile, slice and lightly steam your summer squash [or broil or grill if you like. I like to slice squash lengthwise, score the flesh in a diamond pattern, baste lightly with olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and broil ‘em – Debbie]. Serve steamed or otherwise cooked squash, maybe on top of some cooked couscous or steamed rice, with the chermoulla poured over all.
Potato Bean Salad with Curried Mango Yogurt Dressing
3 C cubed potatoes
In a saucepan, bring potatoes and enough cool salted water to cover to a boil on high heat. Lower heat and simmer 15 minutes, adding green beans for last 7 minutes of cooking time so they are done together. Drain, place in a large bowl and immediately stir in sliced red onions. Stir in drained chickpeas and set aside to cool. Combine all dressing ingredients, and when veggies are cool, stir in dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste, and either serve immediately or store, covered, in the refrigerator.
*Click Here* to go to the recipe database.