What is in the share today?

From Bruce and Jenny Wooster, Picadilly Farm:

Carrots, 5 pounds. These are a variety called “Bolero”, which we grow especially
for the sweet flavor and exceptional storage. The carrots may need another rinse, but many of the nutrients are in the outer layer of the carrots – unless it is your preference, they do not need to be peeled.

Potatoes, 5 pounds. These white “Superiors” are a solid producer of tasty spuds.
They come in all shapes and sizes, and we grade them only minimally. After you store your potatoes, check them occasionally, to be sure they’re not getting soft or sprouting, which would tell you it’s too warm.

Sweet potatoes, 4 pounds. Your 4 pounds will come as two large (did I say large?) sweet potatoes! The skins are surprisingly tender when cooked. We love to slice them, add sliced apples and cinnamon, and bake covered at 350 until cooked. Yum!

Winter squash, 5 pounds. This month, the squash varieties are “delicata”, “sweet dumpling” and “acorn”. Expect 4-5 pieces total. Of all of these, the delicata
(cylindrical and yellow) are the most perishable, so I’d suggest using these first. The acorn (the dark ones) and sweet dumplings (round, ridged and yellow) will keep longer. All winter squash are interchangeable in recipes. To use, cut open, scoop out the seeds and pulp, and bake face down until tender when pricked with a fork. Cook the seeds just like pumpkin seeds (see below). If you see a small soft spot in one of your squashes as the weeks go by, cut it out and cook the squash right up.

Pie pumpkin, one. To cook a pumpkin, either slice in half and bake in the oven like a squash; or peel,remove seeds and pulp, chop into chunks, and boil or steam. The seeds are delicious roasted. Rinse off the pulp, pat the seeds dry, marinate if you’d like (soy sauce, garlic, ginger), then bake at 250 degrees for 50-60 minutes, stirring a few times and take care not to let them burn (they are likely to burn at higher temperatures).

Onions, 2 pounds. Yellow onions. Not a high yielding onion crop this season – we have just enough for two pounds for each month’s share.

Beets, 2 pounds. They’ll keep all winter, in a plastic bag in the fridge! Like
carrots and other roots, beets also have lots of nutrients in the outer layer. I often leave the outer layer on. Try beets grated raw into a salad (just put the unused portion back in the fridge).

Red peppers, one pound. Last of the season! Though these italias are long and pointy, they are super-sweet and not hot. If your peppers are not fully ripe, put them in a bag with an apple, and leave them in or out of the fridge. They will fully color up. Peppers freeze well, too – chop and place in a container, freeze for cooking later.

Daikon, one bunch or one large piece. In Japanese, daikon literally means “large root”. Daikon are the most widely grown veggies in Japan, so we though we’d give them a try. The crop looks and tastes nice, the flavor a bit sharp. Try grated into salad, or try the pickle recipe below. They’ll keep for a few weeks in the fridge.

Overnight Chinese Daikon Radish Pickles, from http://www.allrecipes.com
1 1/2 C chopped daikon
3/4 tsp salt
1 T Rice vinegar
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp sesame oil (optional)

Toss daikon with salt. Cover and refigerate until 1-2 T of water is released, about 30 minutes. Drain and rinse the daikon, removing as much salt as possible. Pat daikon dry, and return to the bowl. Add remaining ingredients, stir. Cover and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. A day or two is even better.

Leeks, a bunch. I love noting that leeks are in the lily family; it only adds
to their elegance. They have a slightly milder and more refined taste than their onion cousins. The usable parts include the white stems and the pale green parts. The dark green leaves can be used for making stock. Cut leeks in half and wash thoroughly, to remove all the soil and grit that can get between the layers. Besides in the ubiquitous potato-leek soup, leeks are also delicious whole – braised, baked or grilled. They freeze easily – chop, put into a container, and freeze.

Celery, a bunch. The celery we can grow is best for cooking, because it is less watery than what we find in the supermarket. It will not keep as long as the traditional celery either – store it in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge. It will still cook fine, even if it gets a little rubbery. This celery if very flavorful, and the tops and leaves are delicious in stock.

Parsley, a bunch. We grow this flat-leaf variety for its nice flavor, and its ability to withstand some cold weather. Store in a glass of water in the refrigerator, and it will keep for some time. Wash it right before use.

Fennel, a bunch. This little-eaten food is actually quite versatile. Use the bulb
and the less woody parts of the stems in any way you can imagine – raw, sauteed, in soups or roasts. Use the feathery leaves like dill, as a seasoning. Fennel pairs well with beans, citrus, and Italian-seasoned foods.

Spinach, 3/4 pound. We’re actually leaving the spinach outside of the box, so it doesn’t get smooshed.Fall is the season for spinach, as the cool nights really help sweeten the leaves. We’ve washed this once, but it will need more washing. We don’t dry the spinach – for longest storage, wash and spin (or pat or air) dry the spinach, and then store it in a plastic or glass covered container in the fridge until you are ready to use it.

From Gretta Anderson, Belmont CSA:
These veggies haven’t been washed, just quickly dipped in cold water to get the field heat off of them.

Swiss Chard, a small bunch. Delicious lightly sauteed in olive oil with garlic.
Chop up the stems first and throw them in with the garlic, then add the chard leaves and saute until tender. Add to pasta. Throw in some olives. Mmmmm.

Lettuce, one head Last of the season. A crisp, sweet head of a romaine-type lettuce.

Escarole, one head. Cook it like Swiss chard and add some cannelloni beans and a dash of balsamic vinegar to finish it. Or try this recipe:

Escarole Sauteed with Black-eyed Peas
1 tsp olive oil
4 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 head escarole, washed and chopped
15 oz cooked black-eyed peas
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/8 tsp table salt, or to taste
1/8 tsp black pepper, or to taste
1/8 tsp hot pepper sauce, or to taste

In a large pot, heat oil. cook garlic over very low heat until very soft.
Stir in escarole and peas, increase heat to high and cook until escarole wilts. Stir in vinegar. Season with salt, pepper and hot sauce. Serve.

From Chris Yoder, Vanguarden CSA:
These veggies haven’t been washed, just quickly dipped in cold water to get the field heat off of them.

Asian greens, one head/bunch. Eat raw or stir fry.

Green peppers, one pound. Add to your stir fry or lettuce salad.

Hakurei turnips, one bunch. Cook the greens as you would Swiss chard. Eat the sweet turnips raw, in salad or add to your stir fry for a lovely treat.

From Cider Hill Orchard:
Apples, about 9 pounds. I talked with Glenn Cook, owner of Cider Hill, and asked how he selected the apple varieties you’ll find in the share tomorrow. He said he told the farm crew to “pick what’s peak right now”. And boy, did they! We packed the apples into bags today, sampling just a few as we worked. These are some mighty tasty apples! Most of these apples should be used in the next few weeks. Ghe varieties in the share include,
Braeburn: crisp, tart, will store for 4 months (this is the variety we will try to send with the New Amsterdam Project bike delivery shares, as well as the large driving cooperatives.
Gala: firm, sweet & tart, for fresh eating
Fortune: large, for fresh eating
Empire: best for baking!
Mutsu: for fresh eating, best for cider & sauce. Ripe when yellow.