June 22nd CSA

 Finally yesterday, the rain.  Despite extra water and drip irrigation in many of our plots and tunnels, there is nothing like rain to wake the garden up.  Many, many crops have been sitting patiently through the winter-like weather two weeks ago and then the desert conditions of last week.  I have written a produce list below, but Thursday and Friday shares may deviate quite a bit from this list.  Nothing to complain about though.  We have things alive and beautiful in the gardens.  Pollinators are busily buzzing around, and flowers and small fruits are roots are encouraging us with what is to come.
So, for this week (tentatively):
Salad Mix
Radishes (Cherriette and Pink Beauty)
Scallions (white and purple)
“Tokyo Bekana” braising green (pictured above)
Rhubarb OR Asparagus
Kale (several varieties to choose from)
 Here is a great link about “Tokyo Bekana”–the light green braising green you get to try this week.  You can use it fresh or stir fried/wilted in much the same way as bok choi or napa cabbage.  It is lovely and mild.  Chop it up in a salad or wilt it with some ginger or garlic.  Let us know how it turned out!

Tokyo Bekana Salad, Asian Greens Salad

RECIPE: Asian Greens Salad

Serves 4-6. Or two, if you are talking and me and my husband.

Salad ingredients

1 head of Bok Choy OR 1 Bag of Tokyo Bekana OR 1 head of Napa Cabbage
Cilantro
Green Onions

Prepare the Greens:

Cut the very end of the stem off all the bok choy/pac choi and Tokyo Bekana leaves. Coarsely chop the remaining leaves and stems into ½ inch pieces. If you are using scallions, cilantro or another vegetable, chop it up and add it to the choi. Wash the greens and get ready to toss them with the dressing.

Sesame dressing ingredients

2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
½ teaspoon sesame oil
2 Tablespoons canola oil
1 ½ teaspoons agave syrup (or honey in a pinch)

Add all dressing ingredients to a bottle and shake, shake, shake.

The “Crunchies”

1 teaspoon canola or mild-tasting oil
1 bag of ramen noodles (organic or otherwise – use only the noodles, not the flavor packet)
1/3 cup slivered almonds

Prepare the Crunchies:

Lay an unopened bag of ramen noodles on the counter or floor and whack them with a meat tenderizer until they are fully crushed. Careful, the bag might pop if you get too excited while you do this! Heat a skillet over medium-low heat and add the oil. When it is warm, pour in the crushed noodles, discarding the flavor packet. Add the almonds. Stir occasionally and cook until the noodles are just golden brown.

Combine everything in a salad bowl, toss and enjoy!

…And an amazing and simple kale salad–for all the fresh and abundant kale!
(sorry I could not provide the strawberries)

Strawberry almond kale salad with citrus vinegrette

1 bunch kale, stemmed
1 lb. strawberries, sliced (you can use less than a pound!)
1/4 cup sliced almonds
Juice of 1 lemon
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. agave (or other sweetener like honey or sugar)
1/8 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. black pepper
3-4 Tbsp. orange juice (optional)

  • Tear the kale into bite-sized pieces and massage with your hands until soft, about 30 seconds. (This makes the kale easier to eat.) Place in a bowl and add the strawberries and almonds.
  • To make the dressing, combine the lemon juice, olive oil, agave, salt, and pepper and pour over the salad. For an extra kick, splash orange juice over the salad and enjoy!

CSA Week 1

P1040676Off to a good start…

Our first CSA week has begun, despite a week of cold, rainy, early spring-like temperatures.  (I heard the weather referred to as “Junuary.”) We are just pulling out of that pattern, and the plants are loving it.  Lots of great greens this week–the ones that love the rain and cool.  It will all catch up as it always does.  I can’t tell you how many times farmers and gardeners have talked about “stagger planting” seeds to be ready at different times–only to have the second or third rounds of planting catch up to the first one.  It’s hard to outwit mother nature–though we never give up trying!

This week, enjoy:

  • Head Lettuce (2 heads)
  • Bok Choy
  • Kale (Red Russian, White Russian or Vates)
  • Broccoli
  • Basil

In case you are not familiar with the delicious possibilities of Bok Choy (an asian green, very high in beta carotene), here’s a simple recipe from the Food Network that is easy to customize;

Bok Choy with Ginger and Garlic

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
8 cups chopped fresh bok choy (about 1 large bunch)
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
Salt and ground black pepper

Directions

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook 1 minute. Add bok choy and soy sauce cook 3 to 5 minutes, until greens are wilted and stalks are crisp-tender. Season, to taste, with salt and black pepper.

Copyright 2005, Robin Miller, All Rights Reserved