10 Oct

Barley with Spring Greens

A wonderful way to enjoy your fresh spring greens

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup pearl barley
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, slivered
10 cups loosely packed torn mixed greens, such as spinach, Swiss chard, kale, tatsoi, mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Directions
1. Bring broth to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add barley and return to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 45 minutes, or until tender.
2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add scallions and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes, or until scallions are wilted.
3. Add the greens, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes, or until just wilted.
4. Fluff the barley with a fork and stir into the greens.

01 Oct

Sweet Beet Dressed Slaw

4 servings

Ingredients
• 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus 3 tablespoons
• 2 small to medium-sized red beets, peeled and grated
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 2 heaping tablespoons Dijon mustard
• 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
• 8 to 10 radishes, julienned
• 1/2 small head red cabbage, thinly shredded (can substitute green cabbage)
• 3 bias cut scallions
• 2 rounded spoonfuls dill pickle relish

Directions

Preheat a medium size skillet over medium-high heat with 3 turns of the pan of extra-virgin olive oil, about 3 tablespoons. Once you see the oil ripple in the pan add the grated beets, season with some salt and pepper and cook stirring every now and then until they are tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer the beets to a bowl and let them cool down a bit. Add the mustard and the vinegar to the beets. Whisk in the remaining extra-virgin olive oil in a slow and steady stream. Add the fresh dill, radishes, shredded cabbage, sliced scallions and relish and toss to combine, taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve now or the next day.

 

01 Oct

Potato, Bacon, and Greens Frittata

You can substitute sliced Canadian bacon for a lower-fat alternative in this hearty Spanish egg dish.

Serves: 6

Ingredients

1 1/4 cups roasted or boiled potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
3/4 cup cooked greens, such as mustard or kale, chopped
2 slices crisp cooked bacon, crumbled (optional)
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large sweet onions, thickly sliced
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
8 large eggs, lightly beaten

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350º. Heat oil in a cast iron skillet with ovenproof handle over medium heat. Add onions, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper; cook, turning with tongs, 10 minutes, or until well browned. Stir in vinegar and cook 1 minute longer. Stir in potatoes, greens, bacon, and 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.

2. Pour eggs over vegetables and stir to blend. Cook over medium heat until mixture begins to set, 3 minutes. Place skillet in oven and cook until set, 15 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes. To serve, loosen around edges with rubber spatula and turn out onto platter.

01 Oct

Roasted Broccoli with Orange

This simple recipe with orange and garlic puts a zesty twist on your average broccoli dish.

Serves: 4

Ingredients
• 1 lb broccoli, tops cut into florets and stems peeled, quartered lengthwise, and cut into 2″ lengths
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
• 2 tsp grated orange zest (optional)
• 1/2 tsp salt
• 2 tbsp orange juice (from 1/2 sml orange)

Directions
1. Heat oven to 425°F.
2. Line baking pan with foil. Put broccoli on pan and toss with oil, garlic, zest, and salt.
3. Spread in single layer and roast until edges brown and stems are tender, about 10 to 20 minutes depending on size. Don’t overcook. They should still be a little crunchy.
4. Toss with orange juice and season to taste with salt and pepper.

30 Sep

Ten Benefits to Buying Local

In these hard financial times, supporting local businesses is so important! Here is what our local Sustainable Business Council has to say about the benefits of buying local:

  1. Independent local businesses in communities with buy-local campaigns have higher sales growth than those in areas without a campaign.
  2. Independent local businesses return more money to the local economy than non-local businesses.
  3. Buying from and contracting with locally-owned businesses supports local jobs.
  4. Small firms (that are generally locally-owned) give more to charity on a per-employee basis than larger ones.
  5. Local residents have a greater influence on actions taken by locally-owned independent businesses than on non-local firms, which encourages the businesses to engage in more sustainable practices.
  6. There is a positive correlation between the number of small- to medium-sized local businesses and community wealth.
  7. Communities with a higher concentration of small, locally-owned businesses have healthier populations.
  8. Fuel consumed to get locally-produced products to market is often lower, reducing greenhouse gas emission and dependence on foreign oil.
  9. Locally-owned businesses often pay more in local taxes per dollar of revenue and thus provide more local government services to the community per dollar of revenue.
  10. Buying local builds community and supports your friends and neighbors.

Ten Benefits to Buying Local

23 Sep

Mario Batali’s Eggplant Parmesan Stacks

Mario Batali’s Eggplant Parmesan Stacks

Serves 4 to 6

2 large eggplant, about 1 pound each
Extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly-ground black pepper
3 cups basic tomato sauce, warm (recipe follows, or use your favorite)
About 12 leaves fresh basil (from 1 small bunch)
3/4 to 1 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced about 1/8-inch-thick
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1/4 cup fresh bread crumbs

Heat the oven to 450° F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper or foil.

Slice each eggplant into 6 disks about 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick. Brush both sides of each disk with olive oil, lightly season both sides with salt and pepper, and place evenly spaced on the lined baking sheets.

Roast the eggplant until the slices are tender throughout and lightly browned, about 30 minutes, flipping the slices once and rotating the pans top to bottom for even cooking. Check to see that the slices are tender by poking in a few places with a fork (if some slices are taking longer than others, you can remove the tender ones to a plate and continue roasting the rest).

Lower the oven temperature to 350° F. Scoot all of the smallest eggplant pieces to one of the same lined baking sheets, and on the other, place the 6 largest eggplant slices, evenly spaced.

Over each slice, spread a scant 1/4 cup of tomato sauce and sprinkle with a couple leaves of basil (torn into a few pieces if very large). Place one slice of mozzarella over each and sprinkle with about a teaspoon grated Parmigiano. Place a smaller slice of eggplant over each of the disks and repeat with tomato sauce, basil, and the 2 cheeses.

Bake uncovered until the cheese is well-melted, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small skillet, toast the breadcrumbs over medium heat with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt until golden and crisp, stirring often. Set aside until the eggplant is ready, then sprinkle the toasted bread crumbs over the top of the eggplant, and serve immediately.

Basic tomato sauce:

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 1 Spanish onion, 1/4-inch dice 4 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced Salt 3 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves, or 1 tablespoon dried 1/2 medium carrot, finely grated 2 (28-ounce) cans peeled whole tomatoes, crushed by hand and juices reserved

In a 3-quart saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and a pinch of salt and cook until soft and light golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the thyme and carrot and cook 5 minutes more. Add the tomatoes and juice and bring to a boil, stirring often. Lower the heat and simmer until as thick as oatmeal, about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with more salt to taste. This sauce keeps 1 week in the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer.

22 Sep

Baba Ganoush Tahini

Baba Ganoush Tahini

Ingredients

1 Eggplant
1 Lemon, juiced
8 oz Plain Yogurt
1 Teaspoon Garlic, minced
1/2 Cup Tahini Sauce
Water

Instructions:

Juice the lemon and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 F.

Slice the eggplant into rounds, leaving the skin intact, then place in a greased baking dish and bake for 30 minutes or until soft.

Remove from heat, cool and peel. Roughly chop and add to a food processor with the garlic, 1/2 of the lemon juice, yogurt, salt and pepper. Pulse until smooth.

Add in the tahini sauce, salt and pepper to taste, remaining lemon juice and about one tablespoon of water. Pulse until combined.

Serve with pita chips and enjoy!

21 Sep

Garden News – September 21, 2017

It’s wet and chilly out there!  I had to harvest some things this morning, which I really  don’t like to do when the plants are wet.  You can easily spread bacterial diseases like powdery mildew from plant to plant when touching them.

Some of you have been asking about funny  looking leaves on your tomatoes and squash.  So here is a picture of what the disease really looks like.

plant disease

If you catch it soon enough there are natural remedies that can be foliar sprayed….like baking soda and water, diluted milk, and if you happen to have a plant duster, any clay like bentonite or a product called Surround can be used.  It is too late at this point to do much about it in this cooler Fall weather.    But now you know what to watch for next year in your gardens or pots.

Here’s some of the goodies you will find in your box this week.  Swiss Chard, Scallions, Jalapeno and Cayenne Peppers, Carrots, Eggplant, Summer Squash and tomatoes.  The cucumbers are still in abundance, so you will be getting them, too.  I  hope you are using them in soups,  salads and dips and stretching your boundaries a little  to use them in some of the recipes I gave you a few weeks ago.

12 Sep

Corn, Black Beans, and Tomato Stuffed Pattypan Squash

Corn, Black Beans, and Tomato Stuffed Pattypan Squash

Serves 5
Ingredients:

3 large pattypan squash
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups cooked black beans (or 1 can, drained and rinsed)
2 ears corn, kernels cut off
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 Tbsp cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
salt to taste
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Put the squash in a large pot with about 1 inch of water. Cover pot, bring water to a boil, and let the squash steam until they begin to get tender (about 7 min). Remove squash from pot and let them cool. Once they’ve cooled, cut off stems and scoop out as much of the inside of each squash as possible. Roughly chop the scooped out squash and set it aside.

Heat oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Saute onion until it’s tender, and then add garlic and cook for an additional minute. Stir in chopped squash, beans, corn, tomatoes, and spices and cook for a few minutes. Place the squash shells into a large baking dish and stuff them with the bean mixture. Top each squash with a pinch of cheese. You will likely have tons of the bean mixture left, so pour this into the dish around the squash shells or bake it in a separate dish. Bake at 350 for 20 min.

08 Sep

Patty Pan Lemon Bread

Patty Pan Lemon Bread

Serves: 12

A very lemony Patty Pan Squash Sweet Bread that is light and airy. Perfect for breakfast, brunch, dessert or as an afternoon snack with tea or coffee you will be pleasantly surprised at just how much lemon flavor comes through. A divine treat for lemon lovers!

Ingredients

For The Bread
2 cups cake flour
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs, room temperature
½ cup vegetable oil
1⅓ cups sugar
½ cup buttermilk, room temperature
3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 Tablespoons lemon zest
1 cup Patty Pan squash chopped in a food processor
For The Lemon Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
3 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 Tablespoon lemon zest

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease one 9×5 loaf pan with vegetable shortening
Triple sift first three ingredients; cake flour, salt and baking powder and set aside
In the container of a blender add the next six ingredients; eggs, vegetable oil, sugar, buttermilk, lemon juice and lemon zest. Blend until well mixed.
In three batches, add flour mixture to blender. Pulse until just blended. About 5 pulses, then add next batch, pulse 5 times, add last batch of flour and pulse 5 times more. Be careful to not over mix.
Fold in chopped Patty Pan squash with a spatula right into the blender
From the blender container pour batter into the loaf pan and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
Check midway through baking. If top or sides are browning too much, cover with a sheet of parchment paper and continuing baking.
Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes in pan. Remove from loaf pan to a rack with parchment paper sheet underneath
Mix glaze ingredients together thoroughly. Pour over still warm Patty Pan Lemon Bread. Pull parchment paper from under cooling rack and replace with a new sheet. Pour the lemon glaze from the first parchment sheet back onto the Patty Pan Lemon Loaf to capture as much of the lemon glaze as possible. YUM!!!
Cool completely, slice and serve
NOTE: Add optional 1 cup chopped toasted pecans or 1 cup frozen blueberries or both to batter before baking

30 Aug

2017 CSA News – August, 30th 2017

We are so blessed to be living here in Billings

Well, I lied!   The new seedlings that we planted over the course of the last few weeks were starting to germinate, but  some of them did not make it.  I guess the hot weather, once again, did it’s number on them.  Is it ever going to cool off?  It’s already the end of August!  I am trying to decide on whether to try again, or if it may already be too late.  I do not have a  sense about how long the fall season will last.  Oh well!  The challenges in the garden are nothing like the challenges that people are facing in other parts of Montana with the forest fires, and in Texas with the Hurricane.  We are so blessed to be living here in Billings.  We have food to eat, water to drink and homes in which to live .   We have much to be thankful for!

Wendy harvested lots of beautiful carrots this week.  Aren’t they something!

Harvesting our many crops can be very labor intensive….especially the root crops like carrot, beets and onions.  Once they are forked out the soil,  they are washed, visually inspected, allowed to dry and then either bunched for our CSA boxes or bagged for bulk sales to our restaurants.  We are always amazed at the visual beauty of our veggies!

Beautiful Edirne Eggplant

Beautiful Edirne Eggplant

This weeks share will include some of these eggplant, along with the last of the summer lettuce, and more broccoli greens.  I hope you have enjoyed the greens.  Ben and Tyler at the Fieldhouse have been using the broccoli greens to wrap around fresh fish filet, and their guests have been loving it!   More tomatoes for you too, this week, along with Suyo Long Japanese cucumbers, more delicious haricot vert, patty pans, zucchini, and, of course, the herbs.

29 Aug

Refrigerator Pickles Recipe

Refrigerator Pickles

The garden is overloaded with slicing cucumbers. I was hoping that some of you would want to preserve some this year. Refrigerator dills or bread & butter pickles are so easy to make. They don’t have to be pressure canned or water bathed….just put in jars and kept in the refrigerator. Of course, they can canned, too, and stored in your pantry to use during the year. I have even seen recipes for freezer pickles. Here are a couple of recipes for you to try. Please come and take these babies off my hands, or I will be taking them to the food bank. I am selling them cheap!

Refrigerator Pickles
Makes 1 gallon

Slice pickles into jar (can either slice into rounds, or thin lengths)
Add sliced onions and green peppers (hot or mild). I like to add thinly sliced red peppers or red jalapeno or serrano, for both taste and color. Can eliminate peppers, but onions are a must.

Heat until dissolved:

2 cups apple cider vinegar
2 cups sugar
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp dry mustard
¼ cup salt

Pour over pickles and cool. Place in refrigerator. These will be ready to eat in 1 ½ -2 weeks. Will keep all winter.

Refrigerator Pickles

Easy Refrigerator Dill Pickles
Yields: 3 jars

Ingredients

10-12 pickling cucumbers
4 cups water
2 cups white vinegar
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar
big bunch of dill
1 head of garlic, skins removed, cloves smashed (less if its a strong garlic)
10 peppercorns

Instructions

Slice cucumbers into 1/4 inch slices or spears. Set aside
To make brine, combine water, vinegar, salt, and sugar in medium sauce pan. Bring to a boil and swirl to make sugar and salt dissolve. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
Add cucumbers to jars. Do not pack them super tight as you you’ll want room for the brine. Add the fresh dill, smashed garlic, and peppercorns to the jars. Finish by adding enough brine to cover the cucumbers. Seal with an airtight lid and store in the refrigerator for at least one week. Pickles should be good for at least 4-6 weeks after that.
This recipe made enough for me to fill one pint and two quart jars.

28 Aug

French Potato and Green Bean Salad

French Potato and Green Bean Salad

Ingredients

2 pounds medium potatoes, like Yukon Gold or Yellow Finn
Salt and pepper
1 bay leaf
1 large thyme sprig
3 garlic cloves, smashed to a paste with a little salt
1 tablespoon chopped anchovy
1 tablespoon chopped capers
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons white wine vinegar
⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 pound small French beans, or small romano or wax beans
4 large eggs
1 tablespoon thinly sliced chives
2 tablespoons roughly chopped parsley
2 tablespoons roughly chopped basil
6 to 8 anchovy fillets, optional, for garnish
8 ounces arugula, optional

Preparation

Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Add the potatoes, bay leaf and thyme branch. Cook at a brisk simmer until the potatoes are firm but easily pierced with a skewer, about 30 minutes. Remove and let cool slightly.
While the potatoes are cooking, make the vinaigrette: In a small bowl, stir together the garlic, anchovy, capers, mustard and vinegar. Slowly whisk in the olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Whisk again before using if the dressing separates.
When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, remove the skins with a paring knife and carefully cut into pieces 1/4-inch thick, or slightly thicker. Put the slices in a low bowl, season lightly with salt and pepper and add half the vinaigrette. Using your hands, gently coat the potatoes with the vinaigrette, taking care not to break them. Cover and set aside at room temperature.

25 Aug

Tomato Salad on a Roll

4 servings

This sandwich, a delight of summer, is a cross between the pan bagnat from Nice and the Catalan tomato bread with anchovy. And it’s dead simple. Tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, capers, anchovy and basil. A splash of red wine vinegar. This sandwich comes together quickly, but the ingredients need to stay inside the loaf for at least an hour. That way, the juicy tomatoes and all the tasty aromatics permeate the bread in a soggy, heavenly way. Eat it outside.

Ingredients

1 pound ripe tomatoes, in assorted colors and sizes
Salt & pepper
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
2 anchovy fillets, rinsed and roughly chopped, optional
1 teaspoon capers, rinsed
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
Pinch red pepper flakes
12 basil leaves
A few tender parsley leaves
4 fresh French rolls or a long baguette

Preparation

Cut larger tomatoes in thick slices or wedges and smaller ones into halves, and put them in a salad bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the garlic, anchovies (if using), capers, olive oil, vinegar, pepper flakes and half the basil, torn or chopped. Gently toss with the tomatoes and leave for 5 or 10 minutes.
Split the rolls or baguette lengthwise. Spoon tomato salad and its juices onto bottom of each roll (or bottom half of the baguette). Lay a few basil and parsley leaves over tomatoes. Replace tops and press lightly. If using baguette, cut crosswise into 4 pieces.
Cover sandwiches with a clean dish towel and wait for an hour or so before serving.

19 Aug

Chinese Chicken Zoodles

Chinese Chicken Zoodles

Serves 2

These Chinese chicken zoodles are a quick and easy 15 minute meal. Packed with flavors from your favorite takeout dish but way healthier for you!

Ingredients

3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon sriracha
1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup shredded cooked chicken
1 medium zucchini, spiralized on blade “D”
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
1/2 tablespoon melted coconut oil

Instructions

Whisk the soy sauce, garlic, coconut sugar, water, sriracha and cornstarch together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the onions and cook for 2-3 minutes until softened.

Add the sauce to the skillet and let cook for about 1 minute. Add the chicken and zucchini noodles to the skillet, toss to fully coat in the sauce and cook for about 2 minutes, until the zucchini noodles are just slightly softened. Serve immediately.