CSA WEEK #14

 
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Dinner is often the most celebrated meal of the day. Sitting around the table and clinking glasses with family, neighbors and strangers alike is one of the most vital ways humans connect. Sharing veggies straight from the farm, your local farmers market, or CSA box is one of the most vital ways to connect with nature and the healing power of good food.

We hope these recipes inspire you to gather around a table and celebrate the vitality and vibrancy of nutriccious foods! 


Bok choy is still one of the veggies that members ask us about wondering what else they can do with it aside from steaming or simply stir frying. And while my absolute favorite bok choy recipe usually includes lots of vibrant asian flavors, I’m up for sharing other ways to enjoy this hearty green...

WILD MUSHROOM & BOK CHOY PASTA
PREP TIME: 15 MINUTES    COOK TIME: 30 MINUTES    SERVES: 4 

Cashew Miso Sauce

  • 1 cup raw cashews, soaked in warm water for 30 minutes
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon white miso paste
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • tiny pinch of salt (optional)
  • 3/4 cup water

Pasta

  • 1 head of bok choy, or about 1 1/2 pounds baby pos chop (dark purple leaves)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 - 3/4 pound black trumpet mushrooms, torn
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  • 10 ounces pasta
  • 1-2 tablespoons sesame seeds

Prepare

  1. Prepare the sauce by draining the soaked cashews. Place the drained cashews along with the remainder of the sauce ingredients into a high speed blender. Whirl away on the highest setting until completely smooth and creamy. Taste test and adjust seasonings as needed. If the sauce seems too thick wait until after the pasta is done cooking and add reserved pasta water to thin the sauce as necessary.
  2. Trim the base of the bok choy and separate outer leaves from the stalk. Rinse and thoroughly dry the leaves. Slice the stems into 1/4 inch thick pieces. Stack the greens together and slice them in half lengthwise.
  3. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Once boiling add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
  4. Heat the oil in a large, heavy bottom skillet over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, bok choy stems and mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 3 minutes. Add the rice vinegar, salt and pepper. Continue to cook for about 1 minute longer. Add the bok choy leaves and toss until the leaves begin to wilt and turn bright green, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add the cooked pasta to the veggies and stir in the cashew-miso sauce, adding reserved pasta water to thin as necessary.

BOK CHOY SALAD WITH MISO TAHINI DRESSING & SESAME CASHEW CLUSTERS
PREP TIME: 20 MINUTES    COOK TIME: 5 MINUTES    SERVES: 4 

Sesame Cashew Clusters

  • 1 cup raw, unsalted cashews
  • 2 Tablespoons pure cane sugar
  • 1/3 cup sesame seeds 

Miso Tahini Dressing

  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons white miso
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup warm water

Salad 

  • 1 head of bok choy 

Prepare

  1. Heat a medium sized skillet over medium high heat. Add the cashews and toast, shaking the pan occasionally, until they're lightly browned on all sides. About 5 minutes. Remove the cashews from the heat and place them on a large plate. Return the skillet to the stove and add the sugar. The moment the sugar has liquified (this wont take long so keep your eyes out!) add the cashews and sesame seeds, tossing to coat them in the melted sugar. Do this quickly as you don't want the sugar to burn. Remove from the heat and transfer the nut/seed mixture to a plate to cool.
  2. Using and immersion blender or small food processor whisk together all the ingredients for the dressing. Taste test and adjust flavors if necessary.
  3. Remove individual stems from the head of bok choy and thoroughly wash them. Pat the bok choy dry and place on a large cutting board. Thinly slice the thick stems leaving the leafy greens whole (set the greens to the side)  Once all the stems have been thinly sliced, stack the greens, roll them, and using a sharp knife slice them into very thin ribbons. Place the bok choy stems and leaves in a large bowl and drizzle with half of the dressing. Toss well and if need be, add additional dressing to taste. Sprinkle with the sesame cashew clusters and serve.

RAINBOW CHARD PESTO PASTA WITH WHITE BEANS & ALMONDS
PREP TIME: 15 MINUTES    COOK TIME: 15 MINUTES    SERVES: 4 

Pesto

  • 2 cups packed chard leaves (reserve stems for another use)
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1/2 cup toasted almonds (toast them in a small dry skillet over medium heat for about 3-5 minutes, shaking the pan often)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • pinch of ground nutmeg (this is a lovely touch)
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Pasta

  • 8 ounces pasta of choice
  • 1 1/2 cups cups cooked cannellini beans (if from the can rinsed and drained)
  • 1/4 cup toasted almonds, roughly chopped
  • freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

Prepare

  1. Prepare the pesto by blanching the chard leaves in boiling water for 2 minutes. Remove from boiling water and place in a bowl of ice water. Drain by squeezing the leaves in a ball in a clean kitchen cloth. Reserve the water (and add a little more if needed) for the pasta.
  2. Add the blanched chard to the bowl of a food processor along with the garlic, almonds, cheese, lemon zest, lemon juice and nutmeg. Process until the mixture starts to mix together. With the motor running add the olive oil and continue to process until completely smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper. Taste test and adjust as needed.
  3. Bring the chard water back up to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
  4. Add the pasta to a big bowl. Stir in the pesto (if the pasta seems dry add a little of the reserved cooking liquid). Add the beans, chopped almonds, parmesan cheese and season to taste with salt and pepper.

FRIED GREEN MEATLESS "MEAT"BALLS
SERVES 3-4 AS APPETIZER

This recipe is a godsend to anyone who belongs to a CSA or tends a prolific garden. Any greens—beet, turnip, kale, chard, mustard, etc.—can be used here.

The recipe comes from Twelve Recipes by Cal Peternell, who notes that these "hot little balls make a nice snack or appetizer, but are also good later, to eat at room temperature out of hand on the go." I find them completely irresistible.

  • 1bunch greens, about 10 cups loosely packed, about 8 oz, see notes above
  • 3tablespoons olive oil or grapeseed oil
  • 1small yellow onion, diced
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/2cup cilantro
  • 1tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta
  • 1 or 2eggs
  • Oil for frying

Prepare

  1. Pulse greens in a food processor or finely chop with a knife—they should be small but not puréed or mushy. Set aside.
  2. Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat and add the oil, onion, and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, cilantro, and cumin seeds. Stir for 30 seconds. 
  3. Add greens to pan and sauté for a minute or two, until they have wilted. Turn the mixture into a large bowl. 
  4. Let cool for five minutes, then add the breadcrumbs and feta. Mix well, then taste for seasoning. Add more salt if necessary—this is your chance to get the seasoning right while the mixture is egg-free. Crack one egg into the bowl and mix with your hands to incorporate. Squeeze a small ball of the mixture. If it holds together, begin portioning out the remaining mixture into small balls. If it doesn't hold together, add another egg. I usually find one egg to be enough.
  5. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add balls to pan—they should sizzle when they hit the oil—then turn heat down to medium or medium-low. Cook until golden, about 2 minutes. Use a fork to flip the balls to the other side and cook for another 2 minutes or so. Serve immediately or at room temperature.

To you and yours, 

Cheers from Black Finger Farm.