This Week’s Share
- Basil: Enjoy your last distribution of basil for the season. Despite some cold/moisture spotting on the leaves it still is great for making pesto, infused oil, or whatever your basil filled heart desires.
- Melons: Much to our delight the melons came on at the end of last week. Some you may have received your melon last week, but if not you can expect to see one in your share this week.
- Tomatoes: With the first day of fall just around the corner we thought it would be an appropriate time to do an update on the season’s tomato harvest. We hope you have enjoyed the tomatoes you have received so far this seaosn. At SIO we plan very carefully for each CSA crop, and within that planning we have specific harvest goals we intend to meet throughout the season. For the 2010 season we planned on each share receiving 8 pounds heirloom tomatoes, 8 pounds slicing tomatoes, and 15 pounds San Marzano Paste Tomatoes. We sowed the seed, transplanted the starts, trained and trellised the nearly 1/2 acre of plants, and have been doing our best to encourage the tomatoes to ripen to red. Despite our best efforts, this season continues to throw us one cool day after the next making each ripe tomato more precious than the last. With that in mind it is unlikely we will be able to reach our intended tomato goals for the 2010 season, and for that we apologize. For the first time we will be distributing green tomatoes to make use of some of the unripe paste tomatoes out in the field, as well as adding an interesting tomato twist to your shares (scroll down to Green Tomato Recipes). Thank you for your continued support and understanding through the less than ideal summer season we are experiencing. Although we cannot control the weather, we can give you our guarantee that we are working our hardest to give you best of what the season has to offer.
Basil and Garlic Infused Olive Oil
1 glass bottle or Mason jar
2 cloves garlic
1 cup basil (approximately)
3 cups olive oil
Peel the garlic and smash it with a heavy chef’s knife. Tear the basil, bruising the leaves to release the essential oils. Stuff the basil and the garlic into the bottle or mason jar. Pour the olive oil into a heat-proof pot or dish and place over a low flame, a glass Pyrex measuring cup works well. Heat the oil until very warm, but not bubbling. You’ll know it’s getting close when the oil’s texture appears to “thin”… you’ll sort of see “swirls” in the oil as this happens. DO NOT let it boil! Once heated, pour the oil over the herbs and cover. Let stand in a cool dark place for about 1 week. After a week, strain the oil, removing all remnants and store in the refrigerator for up to a week, or store in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Adapted from The New Moosewood Cookbook by Molly Katzen
Preparation: Soak 1 to 1½ cups dry baby lima beans in water for at least 4 hours. Cook in plenty of simmering- not rapidly boiling- water for 35 to 40 minutes or until perfectly tender. Try not to overcook the beans, or the soup will become gluey and lose its textural charm.
1 medium potato, diced (peeling optional)
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups onion, chopped
3 to 4 cloves garlic, crushed or minced
3 stalks celery, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon fresh chopped basil
½ teaspoon thyme
3 cups fresh corn cut off the cob (from 4-6 ears of corn)
2 to 3 cups cooked baby lima beans
4 cups milk (can be lowfat)
A generous amount of black pepper
Finely minced parsley, celery leaves, chives, or basil (optional)
Cook the diced potato in boiling water until just tender. Drain well, and set aside. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a kettle or Dutch oven. Add onion, garlic, celery, salt, and herbs. Saute over medium heat for about 10 minutes, or until the onion and celery are tender. Stir in the corn, and sauté for about 10 minutes more. Add the cooked beans. At this point you can puree some of the sauté in a food processor or blender and return it to the kettle, as this will make for a thicker soup Add potatoes and milk. Season to taste with black pepper and salt. Serve very hot, topped with minced fresh herbs.
Tagliatelle with Fresh Corn Pesto
From Bon Appetit (August 2010)
4 bacon slices, cut lengthwise in half, then crosswise into ½-inch pieces
4 cups fresh corn kernels (cut from about 6-8 ears)
1 large garlic clove
1¼ teaspoon coarse kosher/sea salt
¾ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted
1/3 cup olive oil
8 ounces tagliatelle or fettuccine
¾ cup coarsely torn fresh basil leaves, divided
Cook bacon in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp and brown, stirring often. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels to drain. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon drippings from skillet. Add corn, garlic, salt, and pepper to drippings in the skillet. Saute over medium-high heat until corn is just tender but not brown, about 4 minutes. Transfer 1½ cups corn kernels to a small bowl and reserve. Scrape the remaining corn mixture into a food processor/blender. Add ½ cup Parmesan and pine nuts. With machine running, add olive oil through feed tube and blend until pesto is almost smooth. Set pesto aside.
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 1½ cups pasta cooking liquid. Return pasta to empty pot. Add corn pesto, reserved corn kernels, and ½ cup basil leaves. Toss pasta mixture over medium heat until warmed through, adding reserved pasta liquid by ¼ cupfuls to thin to desired consistency, 2 to 3 minutes. Season pasta to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer pasta to large shallow bowl. Sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup basil leaves and reserved bacon. Serve pasta, passing additional grated Parmesan alongside.
From Serving Up the Harvest by Andrea Chesman
Note: The lasagna can be assembled and held for up to 8 hours in the refrigerator. Add 15 minutes to the baking time if it is cold when placed in the oven. The lasagna can also be baked in advance and frozen for up to a month. Bake it still frozen and covered with foil, adding 30 minutes to baking time.
1/3 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 large eggplants (3 medium or 4 smaller), peeled and sliced lengthwise 3/8 inch thick
1 pound (about 2 cups) ricotta cheese
1 egg, slightly beaten
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
3 cups shredded mozzarella
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
4 cups well-seasoned tomato sauce (homemade or pre-made)
12 no-cook lasagna noodles
Pre-heat the oven to 425˚F. Lightly grease two large sheets pans (preferred) or shallow roasting pans with oil. Combine the oil, garlic, rosemary, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste in a small bowl. Mix well. Brush the eggplant slices on one side with the seasoned oil and set the slices, oiled-side down, on the prepared pans. Roast in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, until browned on the bottom. Brush the second side with oil, turn the slices over, rotate the pan from the top to bottom and side to side, and continue roasting for another 15 to 20 minutes, until browned on the second side. Remove the pans from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 350˚F.
Combine the ricotta, egg, and basil in a medium bowl and mix well. Combine the mozzarella and Parmesan in a second bowl and toss to mix. To assemble the lasagna, spread about 1 cup of the sauce in a 9-inch by 13-inch baking dish. Place three lasagna noodles over the sauce. The noodles should not touch or overlap. Spread 1 cup of the sauce over the noodles. Arrange a layer of one third of the eggplant over the sauce. Spread one third of the ricotta mixture evenly over the eggplant. Sprinkle a fourth of the mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses on top. Repeat the layering twice. Top with remaining three lasagna noodles. Spread the remaining sauce on top. Sprinkle with the remaining cheeses. Cover with foil.
Bake lasagna for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until hot and bubbly. Let the lasagna stand for 5 minutes before cutting into serving pieces. Serve warm or hot.
From Vegetable Love by Barbara Kafka
Note: This recipe can easily be doubled or tripled. Packed into sterile jars, it will keep in the refrigerator for up to two months.
1/3 cup olive oil
2 small onions, finely diced (about 1½ cups)
2-4 stalks celery, trimmed, halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into ½-inch slices (about 1½ cups)
1 medium eggplant, trimmed, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes (about 4½ cups)
½ cup peeled and chopped ripe tomatoes (or 4 canned plum tomatoes, squeezed of excess liquid and chopped
1 ounce pitted olives, chopped (about ¼ cup)
2 tablespoons dark raisins, soaked in warm water for 10 minutes and drained
¼ cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon pine nuts
2 teaspoons kosher/sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a heavy 4-quart saucepan over medium heat until rippling. Add the onions and celery; cook, stirring, until wilted, about 4 minutes. Stir in the eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 8 minutes. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Heat to simmering. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, until the eggplant is very tender and the flavors are blended, about 30 minutes.
Cool the caponata to room temperature and let stand at least 3 hours before serving. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week. Bring to room temperature and check the seasoning before serving. Makes 4 cups. Serve as a side dish or first course.
Sweet Pepper Recipe
Linguine with Sweet Red Peppers and Kalamata Olives
From Bon Appetit (August 2010)
8 ounces linguine
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 sweet red peppers, stemmed, seeded, and cut into 1/3-inch cubes
16 Kalamata olives, pitted and quartered
3 large garlic cloves, pressed
¼ teaspoon (generous) dried crushed red pepper
1¼ cups chopped fresh basil, divided
1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for passing around the table
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain, reserving 1 cup of cooking liquid. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add peppers, olives, garlic, and crushed red pepper. Saute until peppers are just tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add pasta, ½ cup reserved pasta cooking liquid, 1 cup basil, 1 cup cheese, and vinegar. Toss until sauce coats pasta, adding more reserved cooking liquid by ¼ cupfuls if dry, about 1 minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup basil and serve, passing additional cheese.
Fried Green Tomatoes (with Buttermilk Lime Dressing)
From Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison
4 to 6 medium green (unripe) tomatoes
¾ cup fine cornmeal
3 to 4 tablespoons vegetable oil or clarified butter
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons chopped basil, tarragon, or parsley (for serving)
Slice the tomatoes crosswise 1/3 to ½ inch thick. Press each piece into a plate of cornmeal to coat on both sides. Heat the oil in a wide skillet over high heat until hot enough to sizzle a drop of water. Add the tomatoes, reduce the heat to medium, and fry on both sides until golden. Remove to a plate, season with salt and pepper, and serve with the chopped herbs, buttermilk lime dressing (recipe below), or mayonnaise.
3/4 cup whole or lowfat buttermilk
5 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (from 3-4 limes)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 cup finely minced fresh basil
1/4 cup finely minced green onion
1/4 cup finely minced fresh flat-leaf parsley (or celery leaves)
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
In a small bowl, whisk the ingredients together until thoroughly combined. Cover tightly and store in the refrigerator not more than 2 days. Makes 1 1/4 cups.
Spicy Green Tomato Jam
From the Oregonian FOODay (September 14, 2010)
Note: This zingy jam — more of a chutney — makes a great pairing for ham, prosciutto or any other pork product.
2 pounds green tomatoes
3 cups granulated sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 whole medium-hot dried red chiles (3 to 4 inches in length)
Dice the tomatoes, keeping seeds, juices, membranes and all. In a wide, nonreactive bowl, layer diced tomatoes with sugar, lemon juice and chiles. Let stand overnight so they can soak up flavors.
The next day, wash 2 pint jars and fill with hot water until needed. Prepare lids as manufacturer directs. Transfer tomato mixture to a large saucepan and cook over medium heat to gelling stage (240 degrees at sea level or 8 degrees above the boiling point of water at higher altitudes), about 30 minutes. If you don’t have a thermometer, use the saucer test: Place a small amount of hot jam on a chilled plate and place the plate in the freezer for a minute or two until the jam is room temperature; if the jam is set (a path remains when you draw your finger through the jam), remove it from the heat. Be sure to watch the jam carefully toward the end of cooking; it reaches the gelling stage quickly, and if it overcooks it will harden in the jars to a stiff mass. Ladle the hot jam into the hot jars, leaving 1/2 inch head space. Wipe jar rims with a clean, damp cloth. Attach lids. Process in a boiling-water canner for 10 minutes (15 minutes at 1,000 to 6,000 feet; 20 minutes above 6,000 feet). Makes 2 pints.
Green Tomatoes with Goat Cheese
4 medium green tomatoes
a tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons minced fresh oregano leaves
1 cup crumbled goat cheese (feta or chevre)
4 teaspoons olive oil
salt and coarsely ground fresh ground black pepper
Cut tomatoes into 1/2 inch thick slices. Coat a shallow baking dish with oil. Place tomato slices, in a single, overlapping layer, in the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle tomatoes with vinegar and scatter minced oregano over tomatoes. Top with crumbled goat cheese and drizzle with olive oil. Broil 5-8 inches below a preheated broiler and broil until tomatoes are hot and cheese is just starting to brown, about 7-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve. Serves 4 as a starter.