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SIO CSA Recipes Week 10, 2014
Mostly salads again here for this hot week. The Green Curry is quite quick so won’t keep you at the stove for long. And I noticed quite a few recipes call for lime juice or zest so pick up a couple of limes if you can. Happy cooking and stay cool!
Nicoise-like Salad with Grilled Onions
Cucumber, Sesame and Peanut Salad
Green Curry with Eggplant and Basil
Cucumber Salad with Tropea Onions, Dill and Blue Cheese Dressing
Farcous (savory Chard Pancakes) with Dill
Beans and Dill
And a late addition idea for the beautiful dill: I’ve been adding plenty of chopped fresh dill to bowls of black beans (cold), tomatoes, Tropea onions, and some good olive oil and I’m really enjoying the dill and beans combination. Give it a try!
You don’t really need a recipe for this classic. Just slice the tomatoes thickly on the equator and overlap with slices of fresh mozzarella and whole basil leaves and drizzle it all with the best olive oil you have and plenty of good sea salt. A little balsamic, sherry or red wine vinegar is good too but not a must. Good crusty bread is a bonus. And few thin slices of Torpedo onion wouldn’t be authentic but would be awfully good.
Nicoise-like Salad with Grilled Onions
I take the idea of Salade Nicoise and adapt it all summer long, i.e. take fresh and/or cooked vegetables, good Oregon Albacore (usually canned), and hardboiled eggs, drizzled with an herby and/or creamy dressing, as a complete, fabulous dinner.
Quantities are of course to be adapted to suit your needs and can be varied in all ways. You just want enough dressing for everything so scale that up if you’re using more vegetables.
This week grilled or raw Tropea Onions would be a lovely addition/variation. You could certainly also add roasted squash or diced cucumber to the mix.
¾ lb green beans, trimmed
¾-1 lb potatoes, scrubbed and cut into thumb-sized chunks (optional)
1 large or several smaller tomatoes, cut into 3/4-inch wedges
4 eggs, hardboiled
1-2 Tropea onions, thickly sliced into rounds and grilled or broiled with a little olive oil and salt or thinly sliced raw Tropea onion
1-2 cans albacore (5-6 oz) or fresh if you have it, seared
4 cups lettuce, washed and torn (optional)
10 sprigs of parsley (more or less), finely chopped or handful of basil leaves or 1 tablespoon chopped dill
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoon red wine vinegar (more to taste)
1 ½ teaspoons Dijon-style mustard
5 tablespoons good-tasting olive oil (more to taste)
2 tablespoons mayonnaise (or aioli if you happen to have some made) or Greek yogurt (optional)
Salt and pepper
My favorite way to hard-boil eggs is to bring the water to a boil and then immediately turn off the heat and set your timer for 9 minutes. Then drain the eggs and run under/let sit in cold water. This will give you perfectly cooked eggs with firm but slightly creamy yolks—no chalkiness or gray lines in site. Eggs like this are perfect for this kind of a composed salad. Peal eggs and cut into quarters.
Bring a large pot of water to which you’ve added 1 tablespoon or so sea salt to a rapid boil. Put in the beans and brink back to a boil as quickly as possible. Cooking really brings out the flavor in green beans and after 5 minutes you loose the “squeak” that you get if they’re not quite done enough. Drain them and run under cold water. I don’t bother with the ice-bath method but you certainly can.
Cook potatoes until tender.
Mix all dressing ingredients together.
Toss the lettuce, if using, with a little of the dressing and spread on a platter and arrange the quartered eggs, beans, potatoes and onions on top. Put the tuna, broken up into pieces in the center. Drizzle the remaining dressing over everything. Serve with good crusty bread.
Cucumber Salad with Peanuts and Sesame
This slightly unusual combination of ingredients and flavors is crunchy, cool, sweet/tart and rather addictive. Enjoy!
1 large cucumber, halved, seeds removed and thinly sliced or diced
1 jalapeno pepper, minced (Remove the seeds for a milder salad.)
1 clove garlic, finely minced
½ teaspoon fresh ginger, grated or finely minced
1 lime, zest and juice
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
½ teaspoon fish sauce
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon toasted black sesame seeds (regular are just fine—the black ones look great but the flavor is very similar)
2 tablespoons salted and roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
1/3 cup roasted, flaked coconut (an inspiration from a different recipe on 101cookbooks.com)(optional)
Fresh basil, mint, or cilantro or a combination of them, chopped
Place the cucumber slices or dice, and chile pepper in a large bowl, toss to mix. In a small bowl whisk together the garlic, ginger, lime zest and juice, rice vinegar, fish sauce, sesame oil, and honey. Drizzle the vinaigrette over the cucumbers and toss until thoroughly mixed. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to allow the flavors to deepen. Before serving add the sesame seeds, toasted coconut (if using) peanuts, and herbs and toss again. Taste and adjust seasoning and serve right away.
Thai Green Curry with Green Beans and Eggplant
I have made variations of this Thai-inspired curry for 15 years. It is not an authentic green curry but a tasty, quick adaptation. You can easily add chicken or tofu to it for an even heartier dish though it’s wonderfully rich and satisfying without as well.
The curry is even better if you have (kaffir) lime leaves–Whole Foods and New Seasons and many Asian grocery stores typically have them. They freeze perfectly so if you see some but plenty and freeze for future curries. But don’t worry if you don’t.
Serves 4 (generously)
2-3 handfuls of green beans, washed ends trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 medium Japanese eggplant, halved and sliced into half rounds
3-4 kaffir lime leaves (optional–see headnote)
1 – 2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 1/2 heaping teaspoon (or to taste) green curry paste (Thai & True is a great local Oregon brand)
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2-3 teaspoons fish sauce (can omit to make it vegetarian/vegan)
1 can coconut milk (full fat preferably but light will work too)
1/4 cup basil, packed and roughly chopped or torn
Salt to taste
Juice of half a lemon or lime (optional but excellent especially if you don’t have kaffir lime leaves)
White or brown cooked Jasmine or other long grain rice
Heat wok or large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add ½ cup of coconut milk (use the thickest, part usually at the top of the can) and bring to a simmer. Stir occasionally for 2-3 minutes. Add the curry paste, garlic and ginger and fry it for about 3-4 minutes until it’s fragrant. Then add the remainder of the coconut milk plus ½ can’s worth of water, lime leaves, if using, soy sauce and fish sauce. Bring to a boil and then turn down to a simmer and add the beans and eggplant and simmer for about 10 minutes until the vegetables are tender. Add the basil and cook for another minute or two. Adjust seasoning with a bit of salt or more soy sauce and/or fish sauce or salt if needed and finish with a generous squeeze of lime or lemon juice, if using. Serve hot over rice.
Cucumber Salad with Tropea Onion and Blue Cheese Dressing (& Vegan Alternative)
This is crunchy, fresh and delicious! The lime juice and zest are prominent and balance the richness of the Gorgonzola. You can certainly use shallots or regular onions, red or not for this but if when you have Torpedo onions, by all means use them.
This makes more dressing than you’ll need but it’s so good and if you think you’ll use it something else (with the tomatoes or green beans maybe), make it all and save the rest for something else.
1 large cucumber, washed, and sliced into about ¼-inch slices
½ – 1 Tropea onion, very thinly sliced (depending on how much onion you like)
2 tablespoons dill, chopped
For the dressing:
3 tablespoons Gorgonzola Dolce blue cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
Zest and juice from one lime or white wine vinegar if you don’t have a lime
1 teaspoon sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the blue cheese, sour cream or yogurt, lime juice and zest, sugar, salt and pepper until well combined. Cover and chill until ready to serve. Just before serving in a large bowl toss the salad ingredients; add about half the dressing and mix well to combine. Taste for seasonings and serve. Add more dressing if needed.
** Vegan alternative:
For a very different but very good variation on this make this dressing.
2 teaspoons orange zest
1/3 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1 jalapeño pepper, seeds and membranes removed, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Whisk orange juice, lime juice, jalapeño, 2 tablespoons dill, and zest in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in 1/2 cup oil; season the vinaigrette with salt and pepper to taste. Pour into a mason jar with a tight lid; keep in refrigerator and use as much as you need for the salad
Farçous (Savory Chard Pancakes)
–adapted from Around my French Table by Dorie Greenspan
These are an absolute cinch to make if you have a food processor. It takes 5 minutes to make the batter and a bit longer to fry them but they are so addictive. These are made all over Southwest France and I’m sure with variations of herbs and greens, but most typically they are made with chard, parsley and chives but they are delicious with dill as well.
They also keep and freeze well and make great snacks. You can also experiment with different flours and combinations of flours if you’d like. Half whole wheat flour works well and I imagine spelt flour would too.
This recipe makes a lot of pancakes so you can cut it in half or make the whole thing and just save some for lunch the next day. I promise you won’t have trouble eating them up.
2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (or half all-purpose and half whole wheat)
3 large eggs
½ cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped parsley
2 tablespoons chopped dill
2 tablespoons of chives, chopped (optional)
1 large bunch chard leaves, washed, shaken dry and center rib and stems removed (can save for other use)
Salt (these need a lot of salt! Start with 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt. Taste the first pancake and add more if they’re bland. They really need salt to lift up the flavors of the herbs and greens)
Freshly ground pepper
Vegetable oil or olive oil for pan-frying
For optional topping: a little salt, lemon zest and juice stirred into plain Greek or whole milk yogurt or just plain yogurt.
Preheat oven to 250 degrees and place a baking sheet in the oven.
Put milk, flour, eggs, garlic, herbs, salt and pepper in a food processor or blender. Mix until smooth. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed. Add the chard leaves to the batter (little by little if you don’t have a lot of space) and blend, but don’t over blend. The mixture does not need to be homogenous and is better with a bit of variation in size of the chard leaf pieces.
You can make these pancakes large, like crepes (and use a crepe pan if you have one) or smaller, like regular pancakes. Pour about 1 tablespoon of oil into your pan (less if it’s a crepe/non-stick pan) and heat over medium-high heat. Add the batter to the pan for whatever size pancakes you’re making and cook until for a few minutes until the edges begin to brown and curl. Flip them over and cook them for a couple more minutes until evenly browned. Place in warm oven while you make the remainder of the pancakes.
These are wonderful with a dollop of yogurt (especially Greek yogurt) to which you can add a bit of lemon zest and little lemon juice. Make a green salad and you have a lovely dinner.