We had amazing weather this last week, and it looks like it will hold for another few days. All of this sun recharges my soul and reminds me that indeed there is sun above those clouds. We aren’t the only creatures to respond this way; the fields feel different when I walk through them compared to the dreary days we had a week or two ago. The colors of the cover crops are deeper, the brussels sprouts ever so rounder and fuller, the rapini closer to starting their floral ascent. We’re all so lucky.
This week everyone received Orchidea chicory, onions, and kohlrabi. You were able to choose the rest of your share from the following: Purple Viking potatoes, sunchokes, garlic, sorrel, catsear, cabbage, kale, spinach, burdock, beets, polenta, baby chard, Brussels sprouts, winter squash, and carrots.
The chicory is beautiful leaf-type that works well as a fresh salad (see last week’s post for ideas in this direction). As always, if you are not a fan of the bitterness of chicory, slice it and soak in ice water to reduce the bitterness. This chicory would also work well in risotto; the buttery creaminess of the rice melds nicely with the walnut flavors of the chicory. The Guardian has a nice piece here with many ideas for cooking chicory–the recipe for penne with sausage and chicory calls out to me. (I am going today to pick-up pork at the butcher that friends of ours raised for us.) When I was teacher, an Italian colleague of mine would eat raw chicory with a sprinkling of sugar–just like her mother loved to do.
The onions are a white storage variety–strong and pungent enough to keep till spring. Nothing special here–they can be used most places.
The kohlrabi is a mix of purple and green-skinned varieties. The differences in flavor are negligible, and since you peel and discard the skin, these two varieties are interchangeable. But the purple ones are prettier, and what’s life without a little beauty?As I wrote a few weeks ago about these, they are good raw or cooked. If you are eating them raw, consider slicing them into very thin wavers and marinading with a vinaigrette (olive oil, salt, and lemon juice would be a nice minimalist approach). They work well as a less starchy substitute for potatoes. In fact I just made a green coconut curry with some of our goose using these, though I added some garlic at the end to this recipe. A stew made with beef, carrots, onions, barley and kohlrabi also sounds nice–check out a recipe here.
One last note: we’ll start accepting applications for our summer CSA soon, so if you are interested in continuing on with us during the summer and fall, let me know and I will reserve a spot for you.
Have a great weekend,
Harry & Jim