Friday, May 29, 2009

Radish and Pea Shoot Sandwich

I didn't make it to the store to buy fancy butter for the radish sandwiches but they still turned out well. All we did is butter some lightly toasted (homemade) bread, top with sliced radish and pea shoot and voila!

This is our first time having pea shoot and it's quite tasty! It tastes a lot like peas, imagine that? It's not so easy to bite through the pea shoot which was a little problematic for the sandwich. Mike said he would have enjoyed a little more flavor on the sandwich but I thought it was good as is.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Box #4

Box #4 brings more delicious goodness.

Green garlic
Green onion
Salad mix - I cannot explain to you how fantastic this mix is.
Spring radish - I heard radish. Time to buy some fancy butter for some radish sandwiches!
Pea vine
Rhubarb - A pie is in my future.
Hon tsai tai:

Steak with Saute Greens, Grilled Parsnips and Ramp Biscuits

To sum up this meal I ask, why go out to dinner when you can eat like this?!

We sauteed the greens with some walking onion, olive oil and red pepper flakes. Topped that with some grilled sirloin from Clancy's Meat and threw some grilled parsnips and leftover biscuits on the side. A fantastic meal for a beautiful spring day.

And of course, we had a nice glass of beer (thanks to our wonderful Portland friends).

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Box #3

We're finishing up Box #3. The contents?

Salad mix
Green Garlic
Egyptian Walking Onion
Spring radish
Sauté Mix
Garden Herb Packs

We went to the cabin for the holiday weekend and took a few items with us. We used the spinach salad to make a spinach, strawberry and onion salad with a poppyseed dressing. Delish!

Also while at the cabin, we made sunchoke dip with half of the sunchokes. Not my favorite recipe. Too bland and the texture wasn't right for me.

So far, the best use of the sunchoke was sunchoke pancakes (like potato pancakes). I think cooking sunchokes at a very high temperature so you get them nicely brown and crispy is the way to go. With the sunchoke pancakes, we had the asparagus with poached egg, ramp biscuits, and radish.

Sunchoke (jerusalem artichokes) Pancakes
via What's in the box

1 small onion
1 ½ pounds of Jerusalem artichokes, scrubbed
1 large egg, lightly beaten
½ cup of all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon of pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon of walnut or hazelnut oil (Optional) -- I used hazelnut
1 ½ teaspoons of kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
A pinch of cayenne
1/8 teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg
¼ cup of vegetable oil, or more as needed
1 tablespoon of butter

Using the shredder attachment, grate the onion in a food processor or through the largest holes of a hand grater, and transfer to a large bowl. Do the same with the Jerusalem artichokes.

Add the egg to the bowl and stir with a wooden spoon or spatula until well blended. Add the flour and stir in lightly; do not overwork. Add the maple syrup and the nutmeg, if using, and season with the salt, and the black pepper, cayenne, and nutmeg. Form into 8 or 9 equal pancakes, about 3 inches in diameter and a ½ inch thick. Place each pancake on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper.

Heat the vegetable oil and butter in a large heavy-bottomed skillet or on a griddle over medium heat. Working in batches, cook the pancakes until golden brown, about 5 to 7 minutes per side. You may need to adjust the heat as you work to avoid browning the outside of the pancakes too much before the inside cooks through. If the pan or griddle gets dry, add up to one more tablespoon of oil. Place the cooked pancakes on a plate lined with paper towels to drain, and cover loosely with foil to keep warm until ready to serve.

From Second Helpings from Union Square Cafe by Danny Meyer and Michael Romano

Ramp Biscuits
from Bon Appetit April 2009
  • 3/4 cup chilled buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup thinly sliced trimmed ramps (bulbs, stems, and green tops)
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 large egg, beaten to blend (for glaze)
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds, cracked
Preheat oven to 425°F. Mix buttermilk and ramps in small bowl. Mix flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper in processor. Add chilled butter to processor; using on/off turns, cut in butter until fine meal forms. Transfer flour mixture to medium bowl. Add buttermilk mixture; stir until dough forms. Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface and press out to 7-inch round, about 1/2 inch thick. Using 2-inch-diameter biscuit cutter dipped in flour, cut out rounds. Gather dough scraps; press out to 1/2-inch thickness and cut out additional rounds. Transfer dough rounds to baking sheet. Brush biscuit tops with some of egg glaze. Sprinkle with cracked coriander seeds. Bake biscuits until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Cool on rack. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

The last (and I mean last, we're not getting anymore) of our ramps, we made Ramp and Green Garlic Pasta.

Fantastic recipe. Simple and delicious. Even Owen liked it!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Box #2

Here's what box #2 contained:

Black radish
Salad mix

We're a little behind on box #2 because of our weekend of camping and some unexpected meals out this week. But, here's what we've done so far.

Asparagus on the campfire.

Spring Greens Salad with Goat Cheese and Dried Cranberries

BLT with Arugula instead of Lettuce (one of my favorite ways to have arugula!). I just noticed you can't see the bacon on the sandwich. I assure you there was bacon and plenty of it. It must be hiding under the tomato.

Bagel with Chive Spread and Arugula and another Spring Greens Salad

Chive Spread (adapted from all recipes)

3-5 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
A few dashes of garlic salt
12 ounce ontainer whipped cream cheese
8 ounce container Greek-style yogurt

Mix together. It's better the next day when the flavors blend together but who can wait that long? The second batch I made (yes, second), I used less cream cheese so it was about a 1:1 ratio of cream cheese and yogurt. I also tried 2% yogurt instead of whole. It's a little looser of a spread but still delicious.

Sorrel and Spinach Salad with Sunchoke and Chicken

Recipe coming soon...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Update: Box 1

I'm a blog slacker. We're finished with Box #1 and almost #2. Here's what we ended up doing with the rest of Box #1.

Ramps: Ramp Risotto, courtesy cook eat FRET via A Good Appetite. Result? Absolutely, positively delicious!

Ramp Risotto

1 1/2 T unsalted butter
7 ramps, sliced thin, greens & all. Keep the sliced bulbs & stems separate from the sliced greens.
1/4 c cream
salt & pepper
3 1/2 c broth (chicken or vegetable)
1/4 c white wine
1/2 T olive oil
1 shallot, minced
3/4 c arborio rice
1/4 c grated Parmesan
pinch - 1/2 t crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)

Heat 1/2 T of the butter in a small skillet over med heat. Add the sliced ramps bulbs & stems & cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Add the cream & cook for another few minutes until the cream has thickened slightly. Salt & pepper to taste. Set aside.

In a saucepan bring the broth to a simmer & keep it warm during cooking.

Heat 1 T of the butter & the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the shallot & sauté for a minute or two. Add the arborio rice & stir for 1 minute until coated. Add the wine & stir until completely absorbed. Add 1/2 c of the broth & cook until absorbed, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. Once absorbed add the next 1/2 c of broth along with the ramp greens & cook until broth is absorbed. Continuing adding the broth, 1/2 c at a time, as each addition is absorbed. When 1/4 - 1/2 c of broth is left, about 18 to 20 minutes, the rice should be creamy & tender but still have a bite. Add the final addition of broth, red pepper flakes & the cream ramp mixture. Stir to combine. Remove from the heat & stir in cheese. Serve immediately.

Sunchoke, Ramps, Black Radish and Burdock: We used the sunchoke, ramps and black radish in an adapted version of Quinoa Sunchoke Pilaf. Result? Pretty tasty. We'd make it again but it's not to die for or anything. Main pitfall? It tasted too healthy. Then, we fried up some burdock chips. We had to fight over these, Owen included. We also sauteed some fiddleheads from the garden to go with - those were fantastic.

Rhubarb: Mike made a delicious rhubarb sauce using a recipe from our farm, Harmony Valley, to go on top of some homemade vanilla icecream.

Rhubarb Sauce

For the simplest preparation, rinse the stems and chop into 1 inch chunks. With just the water still clinging to the pieces place in saucepan and add sweetner. Simmer over low heat, covered, until the rhubarb is softened. Stir frequently. If you prefer a thinner sauce, add several tablespoons of water. Adjust sweetner and simmer and stir until throughly mixed. Enjoy over ice cream, cake or just as a dessert sauce on the side. Serves 4

I'll try to do a big update tomorrow on what we did with box #2 before we get box #3!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Box #1

We got our first box of the season this past Thursday. The contents (next week, I'll remember to take a photo of the raw crops)?
  • sunchokes ... what?
  • ramps ... what?
  • sorrel ... what?!
  • overwintered spinach ... ok, I know what spinach is but overwintered?
  • overwintered parsnips
  • rhubarb ... yes! something I'm familiar with
  • burdock .... huh
  • chives ... yum!
  • black radish ... black?
  • decorative willow ... nice!
We did some research and found some promising ideas.

First off, the spinach and parsnips (Friday). This was easy. We used some spinach in eggs benedict and roasted the parsnips to go with steak. Let me tell you - roasted parsnips are to die for! I love parsnips but always forget about them.

Next up, the sorrel (Sunday). A quick story - when Mike was cleaning off the produce, he ripped of a piece of something green and said, "here, taste this!" and so I did. I expected something like the taste of spinach. But instead it was if I took a bite of lemon. And that is sorrel. Tasty stuff if you know that it is lemony before taking a bite. Mike found a bunch of sorrel recipes on this site and I decided on Quiche with Sorrel and Goat Cheese. I figure, anything with goat cheese has to taste pretty darn good.

Sorrel and Goat Cheese Quiche
A Luna Circle Farm original recipe

2-3 cups sorrel, coarsely chopped
a few scallions, chopped
3-4 ounces goat cheese (chevre)
3 eggs
1½ cups milk
¼ teaspoon salt
Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spread goat cheese (or any strong flavored cheese) in the bottom of a piecrust. Cover with chopped sorrel and scallions. Beat eggs, salt and milk together. Pour over greens. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until top is golden browns.

I followed the recipe as is and it was delicious! I was a wee disappointed with myself because I didn't make the crust. But cooking with a toddler around calls for shortcuts.

To come, ramp risotto and quinoa with sunchoke.