Jun
30
    
Posted (Lori) in News

HOW TO TURN A HEAD OF LETTUCE INTO A MAIN DISH

I’m sure everyone knows how to make a salad, but in the coming weeks we’re going to be inundated with lettuces and greens and pretty little side salads are not going to be enough to use them up. Over the years, I’ve come up with ways to use my lettuce, with just a few extra ingredients, as a main dish. To call it a main dish, I need it to:

–Supply me with a reasonable amount of protein. I’m not a nutritionist—and if any of our nutritionist-members want to correct me, please do—but from what I’ve read, I think I need about 45 grams of protein a day. Spread over three to five small meals a day, my main dish salad has to have 10-15 grams of protein in it. The three cups of torn lettuce in my salad supply about 2.5 grams of protein, so I need at least 8, and up to 12 or 13 more grams of protein. The amounts of protein listed below are rough averages.

–Taste good.  The lettuces we get in our CSA shares are tastier than average—but I still need more taste and texture to make me happy.

–Fill me up. A bowl of lettuce is not going to keep me going until the next meal; I need to add something more filling.

Here are some of the things I add to my 3 cups of chopped or torn greens (I use lettuce, sometimes greens like mizuna or mustard greens, spinach or arugula when we get it, and herbs.

Beans and peas: lot of protein—average is about 8 grams per half cup. My favorite is the chickpea. Soybeans have the most, 14 grams in a half-cup. Agata & Valentina sells roasted soybeans that are crunchy and delicious.

Nuts and seeds: again, protein-packed. Almonds have 7 grams of protein in one-quarter of a cup. Toasting them for just a minute makes them taste even better.

Cheese—crumbled feta or chevre, shaved parmesan or dry jack, chunks of cheddar, shredded mozzarella—or any of the many interesting and yummy cheeses available through Lewis Waite Farms or in local stores. Cheeses average 7 grams per ounce.

Tofu—absorbs salad dressings, sort of like manna. And has lots of protein.

Animal protein—for non-vegetarians, just an ounce or two of grilled, roasted, or any other preparation of meat, poultry, or fish. Flaked salmon and strips of grilled chicken are two of the easiest additions. Leftover coldcuts—smoked turkey, roast beef, and ham, for example—are also easy and get rid of little bits of food that might otherwise go to waste. Leftover barbecued chicken or spicy sausage add strong flavor as well as protein. Chopped or sliced hardboiled eggs are also good.

Grains—A half-cup of carbs often makes the difference between hunger and satisfaction. Rice, quinoa, couscous, pasta, as well as lesser-known grains like faro, wheatberries, barley (look at Lewis Waite’s grain list for other choices)—are both interesting and filling.

Other vegetables and fruits—Tomatoes, of course, though they are usually not in our shares the same weeks as lettuce. But any raw or cooked vegetables go a long way in making a salad a main dish. Fruits—dried, cooked, or fresh—are also nice.

Salty things—olives, capers, and anchovies add a unique flavor

Dressings—You’ll find a nice batch of dressing in Recipes from America’s Small Farms, on pages 54-55 as well as throughout the book. Dressings add interesting flavors, and if they’re full of dairy (buttermilk, bleu cheese or protein-based ingredients (such as tahini or peanut butter), they also contribute significant protein.

YORKVLLE CSA

WEEK ONE RECIPES AND TIPS:

I just noticed that the previous email’s subject line reads CSA starts tonight; it’s really today, 4 pm.

Here are recipes and tips for this week’s vegetables. Most of it is picked up from last year—sorry, busy week for me. I’ll do more for next week—but if anyone has recipes that they want to share, please send them. And if anyone want to take a turn at creating the recipe page, just let me know. I find that it’s a fun job (when I’m not swamped with other work) and no one tries to edit every word I put down (so different from my day job!).

There are a lot more recipes on the Stoneledge website, www.stoneledgefarmny.com

HOW TO TURN A HEAD OF LETTUCE INTO A MAIN DISH

I’m sure everyone knows how to make a salad, but in the coming weeks we’re going to be inundated with lettuces and greens and pretty little side salads are not going to be enough to use them up. Over the years, I’ve come up with ways to use my lettuce, with just a few extra ingredients, as a main dish. To call it a main dish, I need it to:

–Supply me with a reasonable amount of protein. I’m not a nutritionist—and if any of our nutritionist-members want to correct me, please do—but from what I’ve read, I think I need about 45 grams of protein a day. Spread over three to five small meals a day, my main dish salad has to have 10-15 grams of protein in it. The three cups of torn lettuce in my salad supply about 2.5 grams of protein, so I need at least 8, and up to 12 or 13 more grams of protein. The amounts of protein listed below are rough averages.

–Taste good.  The lettuces we get in our CSA shares are tastier than average—but I still need more taste and texture to make me happy.

–Fill me up. A bowl of lettuce is not going to keep me going until the next meal; I need to add something more filling.

Here are some of the things I add to my 3 cups of chopped or torn greens (I use lettuce, sometimes greens like mizuna or mustard greens, spinach or arugula when we get it, and herbs.

Beans and peas: lot of protein—average is about 8 grams per half cup. My favorite is the chickpea. Soybeans have the most, 14 grams in a half-cup. Agata & Valentina sells roasted soybeans that are crunchy and delicious.

Nuts and seeds: again, protein-packed. Almonds have 7 grams of protein in one-quarter of a cup. Toasting them for just a minute makes them taste even better.

Cheese—crumbled feta or chevre, shaved parmesan or dry jack, chunks of cheddar, shredded mozzarella—or any of the many interesting and yummy cheeses available through Lewis Waite Farms or in local stores. Cheeses average 7 grams per ounce.

Tofu—absorbs salad dressings, sort of like manna. And has lots of protein.

Animal protein—for non-vegetarians, just an ounce or two of grilled, roasted, or any other preparation of meat, poultry, or fish. Flaked salmon and strips of grilled chicken are two of the easiest additions. Leftover coldcuts—smoked turkey, roast beef, and ham, for example—are also easy and get rid of little bits of food that might otherwise go to waste. Leftover barbecued chicken or spicy sausage add strong flavor as well as protein. Chopped or sliced hardboiled eggs are also good.

Grains—A half-cup of carbs often makes the difference between hunger and satisfaction. Rice, quinoa, couscous, pasta, as well as lesser-known grains like faro, wheatberries, barley (look at Lewis Waite’s grain list for other choices)—are both interesting and filling.

Other vegetables and fruits—Tomatoes, of course, though they are usually not in our shares the same weeks as lettuce. But any raw or cooked vegetables go a long way in making a salad a main dish. Fruits—dried, cooked, or fresh—are also nice.

Salty things—olives, capers, and anchovies add a unique flavor

Dressings—You’ll find a nice batch of dressing in Recipes from America’s Small Farms, on pages 54-55 as well as throughout the book. Dressings add interesting flavors, and if they’re full of dairy (buttermilk, bleu cheese or protein-based ingredients (such as tahini or peanut butter), they also contribute significant protein.

KOHLRABI

We’re getting kohlrabi in our shares this week; it’s a lesser-known vegetable and one that looks like it  came from another planet. Debbie describes some uses in her message below, but I find that its best role is as a crudite. Just peel, slice and then dip, dunk, or spread. It’s crisp, holds its shape, and doesn’t have a strong taste of its own. If you want more elaborate recipes, there is a bunch of them here:
1. Sliced thin and eaten raw. When raw, kohlrabi is slightly crunchy and mildly spicy, like radishes. You can toss them in a salad or eat them on their own with a drizzle of good olive oil and a sprinkling of sea salt.

2. Made into fritters. This is a great way to get kids to eat their kohlrabi! Shred the vegetable and mix with an egg and a few tablespoons of flour. Heat oil or butter in a flat skillet, drop on small mounds, and flatten slightly with the back of your spatula. Turn after a few minutes, and serve when both sides are crispy.

3. In soup. We particularly like kohlrabi in a creamy, pureed soup with mild spices so that sweet kohlrabi flavor can really shine through. Also, try adding it to recipes for Cream of Potato, Cream of Broccoli, and even Cream of Mushroom soup!

4. Roasted. When roasted in the oven, the outside of the kohlrabi caramelizes, and the flavor sweetens and mellows. You can slice the kohlrabi thin for toasted “chips” or cube it. We like to toss it with other roasted veggies like eggplant and potatoes for a hearty side dish.

5. Steamed. This is kind of a cheat-suggestion because kohrabi can be used in literally anything once steamed. We throw steamed kohlrabi into frittatas, stir-fries, and pasta dishes. We also like to puree it with a little cream and simple spices. We’ve also seen recipes for stuffing steamed kohlrabi into empanadas and calzones!

SAUTEED GREENS–and five ways to use it

Any of the greens we’re receiving—kale, Chinese cabbage, mustard greens—can be used in the following recipes

1 1/2 tablespoons butter

1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 pinch dry crushed red pepper

2 bunches greens, stems trimmed, leaves cut into 1/2-inch-wide pieces

1/2 lemon, juice of

salt

Melt butter and oil in heavy large pan over medium-low heat. Add garlic and crushed red pepper. Sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add greens; stir to coat. Cover and cook until tender (stirring occasionally) about 8 minutes. Squeeze juice from 1/2 lemon onto greens. Season to taste with salt.

Using Sautéed Greens:

1. Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms: Clean 2 portobellos and remove stems. Broil for about 1 minute; remove from oven. Pack the portobello caps with the prepared greens. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bread crumbs. Return to oven and broil for about 2 minutes. Cut in half or in quarters.

2. Greens with quick-cooking grains. For a main dish, mix the greens with grains that cook in under ten minutes

–Bulgur: Combine one part bulgar with three parts water. Bring to a boil; boil for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, cover; let stand for 4 minutes; drain excess water.

–Angel-hair pasta, pastina, or orzo—these cook in 3-5 minutes. Combine with greens and parmesan

–Israeli couscous cooks in about ten minutes

3. Beans and greens: I usually prefer cooking dried beans—but when it’s so hot, canned beans are easier. Chick peas, kidney beans, and cannellini are all great with greens. Drain the beans and rinse thoroughly to get out the “can” taste. Toss with the prepared greens.

4. Greens and tofu. Toss the finished greens with cubes of tofu.

5. Greens and meat. Toss the finished greens with strips of broiled chicken or beef

GREENS WITH TAHINI, YOGURT, and BUTTERED PINE NUTS (or ALMONDS)

Adapted from Jerusalem, by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi

1 lg bunch greens

2 ½ tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons olive oil (plus extra to finish)

About 3 tablespoons pine nuts (or, substitute slivered or blanched almonds because pine nuts are just too expensive)

2 small cloves garlic, sliced thinly (or a tablespoon of thinly sliced garlicscape)

¼ cup dry white wine, stock, or water

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Sweet paprika as garnish (optional)

Remove the stems from leaves—this is the part that takes the most time. Then chop leaves and stems separately. Steam or boil the chopped stems for about 2-3 minutes; then add the leaves and steam or boil about 1 minutes more. Drain and, when cool, squeeze out all the water. The greens should be quite dry.

While the greens are cooking, heat 1 tbs butter and 2 tbs oil in a large frying pan. Add the nuts and toss for about two minutes, until they begin to brown—be careful; they will burn very soon after they start to color. Remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon and reserve. Add the garlic and sauté for about a minute. Add the wine, stock, or water and cook for about 1 minute. Return the greens to the pan, add the last tablespoon of buRECItter and stir for 2-3 minutes until it is combined with the garlic and warmed through.

Divide the greens among 4 plates; spoon the tahini-yogurt sauce over it and sprinkle with the nuts. Drizzle with olive oil and paprika.

Tahini-yogurt sauce:

4 tbs tahini paste

4 tbs Greek yogurt (see note)

2 tbs freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 clove garlic, crushed (or 2 tsp chopped garlicscape)

2 tbs water

Put all the ingredients in a bowl and mix with a whisk until you get a smooth paste.

NOTE: If you have plain yogurt, it can be turned into Greek yogurt in a couple of hours. Put yogurt in a sieve lined with a coffee filter, placed over a bowl (or, attach the coffee filter to the top of an empty yogurt container with a rubber band. Cover, and leave in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight; the liquid will drain from the yogurt, leaving a thicker, creamier, Greek-style yogurt.

FUSILLI WITH GREENS—submitted by Luce, who notes that it is

very versatile and open to personal twists!

3/4 pound whole-wheat fusilli

3/4 pound mustard greens/mizuna, chopped and rinsed (or any other greens: escarole works great too, as does chard)

1/3 cup pine nuts (optional)

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 sliced garlic cloves

1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes

1/3 cup dried currants

4 Italian sausages (two sweet, two hot works well)

Freshly shredded parmesan cheese

1. Broil the sausages, and slice.

2. Cook pasta as package directs.

3. If using, toast pine nuts in a large, dry frying pan over medium heat; set

aside.

4. Add oil to pan, then add garlic, chili flakes and currants. Cook, stirring,

until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the greens. Cook until greens are tender.

5. Stir in drained pasta, sausages and reserved pine nuts. Serve with cheese.

CHINESE CABBAGE SALAD

From: How Stuff Works, by the Editors of Publications International, Ltd.

This is a great make-ahead dish: as it refrigerates overnight, the cabbage softens slightly and the tangy flavors blend even more. Try a crisp Asian pear or juicy seedless red grapes in place of the apple.

6 tablespoons cider vinegar

3 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon dark sesame oil

1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger

1 large crisp red apple, diced

1 medium (1 to 1-1/4 pounds) head Chinese cabbage

1/3 cup golden raisins

2 green onions, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

PREPARATION:

Combine vinegar, sugar, oil and ginger in large bowl; stir until sugar dissolves. Stir in apple.

Add cabbage, raisins, onions, cilantro and sesame seeds; gently stir until well combined.

Note

Store cabbage tightly wrapped in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. A one-pound cabbage will yield about 4 cups shredded cabbage.

PICKLED CHINESE CABBAGE—submitted by Lee’at

1 head Napa or Chinese cabbage (this works with plain cabbage as well)

5-6 slices of fresh ginger

5 oz. (1/2 cup + 2 tbsps) sugar

1 tbsp + 1 tsp salt

1 cup rice wine vinegar

2 cups water

1 carrot, peeled and cut into slivers

1/2 red bell pepper, cut into slivers (optional – I just added them for color)

1 tbsp Sichuan peppercorns

6-12 dried red chili peppers (depending on how spicy you want it)

Lop off the base of the head of Napa cabbage. Separate the leaves and wash them. Shake off excess water and blot with a towel. Stack several leaves together in the same orientation and cut a couple of 1-inch sections (the tougher white parts) – don’t throw them out, you’ll want to keep it all. Then slice the remaining leafy section lengthwise. Repeat with all of the leaves. The smaller leaves can be left whole. In a small saucepan, heat the ginger, sugar, salt, rice wine vinegar, and water. Stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved. When the mixture comes to a boil, remove from heat. In a large glass jar, layer the cabbage, carrots, bell pepper (if using), Sichuan peppercorns, and red chili peppers. Pour the pickling liquid (including the ginger) into the jar. Cover the jar tightly. Give it a shake. Place in refrigerator. Don’t worry if the liquid doesn’t cover all of the cabbage, over time the cabbage will wilt and settle into the liquid. Refrigerate for at least a day, but I prefer at least three days.



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