It’s been out of the fry pan into the fire this past week. The days have been so hot that Barb and I have found it callenging working in the garden in the afternoons. With both of us now in our 70’s we just can’t take the heat like we used to. That being said, the summer squash and peppers are loving it and really starting to grow. I was really worried there for awhile, as they just were just sitting there. This time last year we were almost ready to harvest the first of the zucchini….not so this year. With the cool nights of the past few weeks, they just were not liking it! Everything is looking pretty good out there right now. The flea beetles, which were quite bothersome in the early spring last year, are just now starting to show their nasty faces. It’s a good thing that this is the final harvest for the braising greens, as the beetles love those crops!
This week will provide you with the last of the spring peas, beautiful heads of cauliflower, broccoli florets, radishes, swiss chard, a colorful mix of heirloom beets with their tops, baby carrots and, of course some herbs. I am really pleased with the cauliflower. In past years I have found it difficult to grow them perfectly…similar to the broccoli. But this year I think I was blessed. They look spectacular.
Be sure and top your carrots before storing them. We leave the tops on because it is a great way to bundle and present them. You can either put them in a zip lock bag, or store them in water for crisp snacking.
The beet tops are considered a green. They can be braised, steamed, added to stir frys and Thai curries, or roasted with other veggies in a 450 degree oven. The beets can be steamed, boiled, pickled and I even like them grated raw into a green salad. If they are boiled or steamed, the skins slip right off. Otherwise you may want to peel them. I actually like the peels….just like carrots, as long as you scrub them good.
I am excited to announce that I will have organic, free range eggs available here every week for you to pick up. My friend Marlene Wilkin lives just down the road on Independent Lane. She grows heritage birds and her eggs are wonderful. I thought it would be a great way to introduce you to another local producer and give you the opportunity to cross one more thing off of your grocery list. The eggs will sell for $3 a dozen.
Don’t forget to bring your bags or boxes!
See you on Thursday…4-6 P
New recipies for your enjoyment.
Spicy Stir-Fried Sugar Snap Peas
1 lb. sugar snap peas
2 T soy sauce (can use low-sodium soy sauce if you prefer)
1 tsp. sesame seed oil
1 tsp. Sriracha sauce
2-3 slices fresh ginger root
2 large garlic cloves, sliced
1 T peanut oil
1 tsp. black sesame seeds or sesame seeds for garnish (optional)
Remove the strings from the each sugar snap pea by snapping the stem end and pulling the string down the side, then slice each one on the diagonal. (The sugar snap peas actually have a string on each side, but on most of them I only removed the string from one side.)
Mix the soy sauce, sesame oil, and Sriracha sauce in a small bowl and set aside.
Put the wok or heavy frying pan on the burner and preheat at least one minute. (It should feel very hot if you hold your hand above the wok.) When wok is hot, add the oil and let it heat until the oil is shimmering (about 15-30 seconds, depending on how hot your stove gets.) Add the sliced ginger root and garlic and stir-fry just long enough so that they become fragrant and season the oil, then remove. (Be careful not to brown the ginger and garlic or they will have a bitter taste.)
Add the sliced sugar snap peas and cook over high heat, stirring constantly, until the peas turn bright green and are just starting to cook, about 2 minutes. Pour in the sauce mixture and cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce just starts to coat the peas, about 1 minute more. (There will be some sauce in the bottom of the wok, but not much.) Serve hot, sprinkled with black sesame seeds or sesame seeds if desired.
Roasted Cauliflower Salad
Roasted cauliflower florets are the crunchy centerpiece of this salad, which is dressed with a sprightly vinaigrette.
2 heads cauliflower, cut into florets
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
1/2 cup pitted green olives
1/4 cup cleaned, trimmed, and thinly sliced radishes
4 cups watercress or you can substitute other tender greens
1/2 cup whole parsley leaves
1/2 cup blue cheese, crumbled
3/4 cup Apple-Cider Vinaigrette
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Place cauliflower in a large bowl and drizzle with olive oil; season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Transfer to a baking sheet and roast cauliflower until golden brown, about 25 minutes. Set aside and let cool, 10 to 15 minutes.
3. Transfer cauliflower to a bowl and add cherries, almonds, olives, radishes, watercress, parsley, and cheese. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with vinaigrette; toss to combine and serve.
Simple Spring Greens and Radish Sauté Recipe
Keep your health on track with this scrumptious and vitamin-rich radish sauté.
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 bunch radishes, sliced
4 green onions, sliced
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon celery seed
6 generous cups packed, chopped greens (such as beet greens and chard)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Heat butter and oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Sauté radishes for 3 minutes.
Add green onions and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in lemon juice, sugar, celery seed and chopped greens; sauté for 2 to 3 minutes more or until greens are wilted.
Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.