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Archive for May, 2009

5-061

  • herbs: chives, chervil, and cilantro
  • English peas
  • green hydroponic lettuce
  • Bordeaux spinach
  • strawberries (1 lb!)
  • eggs
  • blueberry muffins
  • radishes
  • green onions
  • red hydroponic lettuce

This week’s collection is very spring, don’t you think? The chive flowers, radishes, strawberries and the delicate green colors looked really pretty spread out on the table. The blueberry muffins are moist and delicious. These muffins are the right size, too, for a satisfying, quick breakfast or treat.

C Herbs

The herbs are cool for a couple of reasons. One is the chervil. I’m sure I’ve had this in herb mixes before, but I’ve never had it by itself. It tastes like a subtle parsley with a little licorice thrown in. I’ve already made some salad dressing by mixing some chopped chervil with vinegar, sugar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. It was really good on the delicate hydroponic lettuces and radishes. Here’s another vinaigrette recipe from The Spice and Herb Bible. It’s written to be served over seared tuna, but it will probably go with lots of things.

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Chervil Vinaigrette

Combine

1 tbsp chopped fresh chervil

1 tbsp cider vinegar

1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

1-1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

½ tsp crushed garlic

Whisk in

2 tbsp olive oil

until the whole thing emulsifies.

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We’ll definitely use some chervil and chives on salads and chives on loaded baked potatoes. If I had my way, I’d toss the chives, chervil, some garlic, salt and olive oil with fresh pasta. But I don’t think anyone else likes pasta without red sauce as much as I do.

The other reason I like this herb bag is the cilantro came in a manageable amount. I’m not a huge cilantro fan, but I can work with this much. I’ll add it to salsa and tacos sometime this weekend or next week.

Strawberry Freezes Forever or just for a few days

I went ahead and froze some of these strawberries after we had a couple go moldy in the fridge last week. My husband enjoys them fresh but doesn’t always get through the whole supply. Many more things can be done with frozen strawberries than can be done with moldy ones, so I’m freezing them now. Fresh frozen strawberries can be defrosted a little into a delicious slurry that’s just as good as fresh,  if not better on a hot day. Frozen berries can be added directly to smoothies and ice cream or put in a pot and cooked down to sauce. Or they can be used to make dressing for Bordeaux spinach.

But I don’t intend them to languish in the freezer for months. Freezing as a short term storage solution is what Mark Bittman wrote about this week. I find the concept helpful because I tend to think about my freezer as long term storage for enjoying stuff out of season rather than as a short term tool. It also inspires me to get back to organizing my freezer. Maybe.

Cooking for Mom

This weekend we’re going to make shrimp fried rice for my mom for Mother’s Day. I’ll use green onions and eggs and hopefully some pac choi from my mom’s CSA box. I don’t like English peas that much, so even though they’re naturals for fried rice, I’m not putting them in. Instead, I’ll cook them as a nice side with another meal.

Update on Peas

How to Cook Everything has a great, easy pea recipe. I ended up with a little more than a cup of peas, so I melted a tablespoon of butter (or you can use olive oil) in a little skillet. After it was hot, I added about a tablespoon of chopped chervil and chives to sizzle for a minute. (These seasonings were just one of the possibilities listed in the book for peas.) Then I added the peas and cooked them about two minutes. Right before they were done, I sprinkled a little salt and sugar over them. The recipe was easy and quick, but I still don’t like peas. Thankfully, everyone else ate them up with no problemh.

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Here’s this week’s haul. School’s out for a couple of months, and I am looking forward to having more time to play with my food.

  • 4-29Ezekiel muffins
  • eggs
  • pecans
  • oregano
  • spinach
  • red leaf lettuce
  • more lettuce (Bibb?)
  • more pecans
  • carrots
  • strawberries
  • collards

I also ordered extras from the online store. 4-29store

  • Café Campesino regular and decaf coffee – We’ve ordered from these guys before and enjoyed the coffee, so we were happy to see them added to the CSA store. The prices are about the same as on the Campesino website but without the extra shipping.
  • Honey – My husband drinks coffee, but I like tea with honey in it as well as peanut butter and honey sandwiches for breakfast. So I’ll have no problem getting through this jar of honey. There have also been reports that eating local honey helps with allergies. It seems like a tasty remedy to try although it’s important to remember not to give honey to children until they’re more than a year old and their immune systems can handle it.

This week

I’ve already enjoyed some scrambled eggs, salad, carrots, and most of the muffins.

Heaven on a blue plate!

Heaven on a blue plate!

Those eggs were last week’s eggs, and this week’s eggs are slated to become French toast for Sunday brunch. Probably with strawberries on top or that strawberry sauce mentioned in a CSA newsletter a couple of weeks ago.

The lettuce is already gone. It made three or four really nice salads along with the carrots and leftover arugula from last week. Now it’s time for spinach. I’m thinking about a spinach salad with hot bacon dressing for early next week.

These pecans are big which makes them easier to shell. Or at least you get more pecan meat per shelling. I plan to candy this bunch according to this recipe.

Leftovers

Several days ago, we had a nice CSA supper with sweet potatoes, salad, red cabbage, rice grits, and broiled flank steak.

csasupper1

I just cooked the grits like rice, and they came out fine. They have a really satisfying texture. After this supper, I decided to try rice pudding using rice grits. I found this easy recipe, and it was delicious. I could have eaten the whole pot in one sitting!

I still have some grits left. I think I’ll just cook them with rice and serve them alongside the spinach salad with bacon dressing.

I’ve got a lot of spinach, and I’m working on some kind of spinach alfredo dish to try. It’s always strange to me how you can have so much raw spinach but once you cook it down it’s hardly any at all!

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