Posted (Lori) in News

The air conditioning in my building is going to be turned off this week so that the cooling towers can be cleaned. And the temperature is going to stay fairly high all week. So I’m not planning to do much cooking. Luckily, the vegetables we’re getting this week don’t require much.

When I get home on Tuesday, I’m going to turn 2 of my peppers, half of my eggplant, 1 tomato (plus canned sauce), some mushrooms, and some zucchini (not from this week’s share, plus basil and onion into a big pan of ratatouille:

I’ll roast the rest of the peppers. After Tuesday, I won’t have the stove on for more that ten minutes until the weekend. There are lots of tomato recipes here:

I was planning to collect a batch of tomato recipes, ideas, and tips; but the New York Times beat me to it. I may try Tomatoes nicoise; creamy, garlicky tomato gazpacho (probably without the fried cheese) &/or the blender tomato soup; capreses antipasto (with my roasted peppers and without the prosciutto); tomato salad on a roll. I’ll also make celery salads, coleslaws, and panzanellas. You’ll find them on this website by scrolling down over the next few pages. I’ll use my ratatouille over pasta, in omelettes, and in sandwiches; I’ll pan-fry a chicken breast and poach a piece of salmon to go with them.

Over the weekend, I’ll try the Eggplant Tostadas that Chelsea recommended (it’s below) and this Corn and Cherry Tomato Quiche from Joanne’s blog. I haven’t tried the quiche yet, but Joanne says it’s wonderful and everything else I tried from her blog has been great. I’m pasting the recipe below, but if you follow the link, you’ll find fully illustrated, more detailed instructions.



The bright flavors of sweet summer corn and pan-roasted tomatoes make this corn and cherry tomato quiche the epitome of summer eating.

Yield: 1 10-inch quiche

For the pie crust

2 cups all purpose flour

¼ cup sugar

½ tsp baking powder

¾ tsp kosher salt

1 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed

¼ cup cold water

For the quiche

4 tbsp olive oil

1¼ cups fresh corn

1½ tsp kosher salt

1 garlic clove

2 cups cherry tomatoes

1 pinch red pepper flakes

3 large eggs

¾ cup + 2 tbsp creme fraiche

¾ cup + 2 tbsp heavy cream

¾ tsp freshly ground black pepper

2-3 tbsp parmesan cheese


In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt to blend. add the butter and pulse 3 times or until pea-size pieces form. Pour the water into the bowl and pulse another three times until the dough just starts to come together.

Dump the dough onto a clean work surface and gather it together by hand, kneading slightly until just starting to hold together. Press the dough into a ¾-inch thick disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least one hour.

Roll the dough into a 15-inch square. Gently transfer to a greased 10-inch tart pan, allowing the edges to drape over the sides. Gently press into the pan, making sure to get it into all the corners. Trim any excess dough. Freeze for at least 1 hour.

Heat oven to 350F.

Line the inside of the frozen shell with parchment paper and then fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 35 minutes, until the outer edge starts to brown. Remove the parchment and pie weights and bake for another 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned.

Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a medium pan over medium-high heat. Add the corn and ¼ tsp salt. Saute for 1-2 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

Add the remaining olive oil, then saute the garlic for 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add the tomatoes, ½ tsp salt, and the chile flakes. Raise the heat to high and cook, covered, for 3 minutes or until the tomatoes start to burst. Remove the lid and continue cooking, allowing to thicken for 3-4 minutes. Transfer the tomatoes to a plate.

Increase the oven to 450F.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, creme fraiche, cream, remaining ¾ tsp salt, and the black pepper.

Sprinkle the corn over the bottom of the cooked shell. Top with the cooked tomatoes. Pour the egg mixture over the top, making sure it doesn’t spill over the edge. Top with the parmesan. Bake for 25 minutes, or until set and golden. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Adapted slightly from Huckleberry: Stories, Secrets, and Recipes From Our Kitchen

Chelsea sent this recipe, from Blue Apron


4 Corn Tortillas

5 Ounces Multicolored Cherry Tomatoes

2 Sweet Peppers

1 Poblano Pepper—(if you substitute jalapenos, use half, they are hotter than Poblanos)

1 Avocado

1 Lime

3?4 Pound Eggplant

1 Large Bunch Cilantro

1 Shallot

1?4 Cup Mexican Crema (to make it, combine ¼ cup sour cream, ¼ cup heavy cream, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; mix well, cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temp for several hours. Once ready, store in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to three days. You’ll have more then you need for this recipe)

2 Teaspoons Tostada Spice Blend

(Ground Mexican Oregano, Ancho Chile Powder, Ground Cumin & Garlic Powder)

Makes 2 Servings  About 700 Calories Per Serving

Prep Time: 15 min | Cook Time: 25 to 35 min

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Cut off and discard the stem end of the eggplant; cut into 1?2-inch-thick rounds. Halve the tomatoes. Quarter the lime. Pit, peel and medium dice the avocado; place in a medium bowl and toss with the juice of 1 lime wedge. Pick the cilantro leaves off the stems; discard the stems. Peel and mince the shallot to get 2 tablespoons of minced shallot (you may have extra); place in a bowl with the juice of 2 lime wedges. Cut out and discard the stems, ribs and seeds of the poblano pepper and sweet peppers; thinly slice into 1?2-inch-wide strips.

??Bake the tortillas:

Lightly oil a sheet pan. Place the tortillas on the oiled sheet pan; drizzle with a little more olive oil, turning and flipping the tortillas to thoroughly coat. Bake 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown. Flip and bake an additional 1 to 3 minutes, or until browned and lightly crispy. Remove from the oven; immediately season with salt and pepper.

Brown the eggplant:

While the tortillas bake, place the eggplant in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and the spice blend; toss to thoroughly coat. In a large pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned eggplant in a single layer. (If necessary, work in batches.) Cook, flipping occasionally, 4 to 7 minutes, or until browned on both sides. Transfer to a plate.

??Make the lime crema & salsa fresca:

While the eggplant browns, in a small bowl, combine the Mexican crema and the juice of the remaining lime wedge; season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. In a medium bowl, combine the avocado, tomatoes, shallot-lime juice mixture and half the cilantro (finely chopping just before adding). Stir in a drizzle of olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.

??Cook the peppers:

In the pan used to brown the eggplant, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the poblano pepper and sweet peppers; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 5 to 7 minutes, or until softened and browned. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste.

???Finish & plate your dish:

Divide the baked tortillas between 2 plates. Top each with half the browned eggplant, cooked peppers, lime crema and salsa fresca (you may have extra salsa fresca). Garnish with the remaining cilantro. Serve with any remaining salsa fresca on the side. Enjoy!


This week’s share includes one herb and one vegetable about which I can’t get very enthusiastic. Regarding cilantro, several studies have shown that some people have genetic material that makes them hate this herb; I am definitely one of those people. About tomatillos, the best I can say is that they last a very long time in the refrigerator (before they turn to mush and get thrown away). But I know that many (most) people love both of them. So here’s a little bit about how to use them; if any tomatillo or cilantro lovers want to tell us why, please post a comment, or send me a whole new entry and I’ll post it separately.


Tomatillos are traditionally used in three ways — raw, boiled/blanched, or roasted/grilled:

Raw – Uncooked tomatillos add a fresh, tangy citrus-like flavor and are often used raw in Mexican table sauces. Finely dice or puree them.

Blanching – Mellows the flavor. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the whole tomatillos (husks removed and rinsed) and boil for about 5 minutes, until soft. Drain and crush or puree as directed in a sauce recipe.

Fire roasting – Leaving slightly blackened skins on enriches a sauce with a smoky, woodsy flavor. Can roast under the broiler, with a propane torch, or over an open flame such as a grill or a gas burner. Make sure the heat is quite hot, otherwise the tomatillos will turn mushy before being charred.

Dry roasting – Produces an earthy, nutty flavor. Place the tomatillos in a heavy skillet (preferably cast-iron). Turn heat to low. Roast for about 20 to 30 minutes, turning occasionally, letting each side take on a rich, burnished golden color before turning.

The information above is from Maraquita Farms, a California CSA. For more about tomatillos from Maraquita, see:

Here’s another group of tomatillo recipes:


This is probably the best-known use of tomatillos

1 pound tomatillos, husked, washed and cut into quarters

2 – 4 large hot peppers, stemmed, seeded if desired and roughly chopped

1/2 cup cold water

1/2 medium onion, cut in half

2 bunches cilantro, stems and leaves

2 teaspoons salt

In blender place tomatillos, jalapenos and water. Puree until just chunky. Add remaining ingredients and puree about 2 minutes more, or until no large chunks remain. This salsa keeps in the refrigerator, in a covered container, about 3 days.

Here’s a tomatillo recipe that I actually like. It’s a fairly standard salsa verde, but the honey and hot pepper reduce the sour tomatillo taste. It’s also quick and easy; some people object to the raw onion and garlic, though.

Place in a blender or food processor:


1 lb. fresh tomatillos, husked, cored, blanched (see above) and chopped roughly

1 small onion, chopped roughly

2 cloves garlic

2 sprigs parsley (original recipe called for cilantro)

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon (more or less to taste) fresh lime juice (or lemon juice)

1 small hot pepper; take out some of the seeds if you don’t want to it be very hot

Salt to taste.

Process for a few seconds if using as a dip (with chips or crudités), longer (until smooth) is using as a sauce for fish, chicken, or meat.


1 pound fresh tomatillos

4 celery ribs

1 cup packed fresh cilantro sprigs

6 radishes

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Remove husks from and rinse tomatillos under warm water to remove stickiness. Pat tomatillos dry and cut about three fourths into 1/4-inch dice. In a blender or food processor puree remaining tomatillos until smooth. Cut celery into 1/4-inch dice and finely chop cilantro. Slice radishes and cut into julienne strips. In a bowl toss together all ingredients and season with salt. Salsa may be made 1 hour ahead and chilled, covered.


Mermelada de Tomate Verde con Limon

Makes about 1 1/4 cups; from Patti’s Mexican Table

1 lb tomatillos, husks removed, rinsed and roughly chopped

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 cup water

4 tbsp fresh squeezed lime juice

Rind of a lime, whole or chopped

A pinch of salt

Place all of the ingredients into a saucepan set over medium heat. Let them come to a simmer and stir occasionally, letting them cook until it has thickened and achieved a soft and loose jam consistency, about 35 to 40 minutes.

Don’t wait until it has thickened too much, because it thickens considerably as it cools. Once it has cooled down, pour it into a container, cover tightly and refrigerate.


From Rick Bayless

8 ounces (5 to 6 medium) tomatillos, husked and rinsed

Fresh hot green chiles, to taste (roughly 2 serranos or 1 jalapeno), stemmed

5 or 6 sprigs fresh cilantro (thick stems removed), roughly chopped (or, if you don’t like cilantro, use parsley)

Scant 1/4 cup finely chopped onion


Preheat a broiler.

Roast the tomatillos and chiles on a baking sheet 4 inches below a very hot broiler until darkly roasted, even blackened in spots, about 5 minutes. Flip them over and roast the other side, 4 to 5 minutes more will give you splotchy-black and blistered tomatillos and chiles. In a blender or food processor, combine the tomatillos and chiles, including all the delicious juice that has run onto the baking sheet. Add the cilantro/parsley and 1/4 cup water, blend to a coarse puree, and scrape into a serving dish. Rinse the onion under cold water, then shake to remove the excess moisture. Stir into the salsa and season with salt, usually a generous 1/4 teaspoon.

GREEN RICE with tomatillos

1 recipe Tomatillo Salsa, recipe follows

6 Poblano or Ancho chiles, roasted, peeled and seeded

5 Romaine lettuce leaves

2 bunches cilantro, stems and leaves

4 scallions, white and green parts

6 garlic cloves, peeled

1/2 cup cold water

2 teaspoons salt

1/4 cup vegetable oil

3 cups long-grain rice, rinsed

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour the tomatillo salsa into a food processor or a blender. Add the chiles, lettuce leaves, cilantro, scallions, garlic, water and salt and process until liquified. Set aside. In a medium skillet heat vegetable oil over medium-low heat. Add rice, stirring constantly, until golden and crackling, about five minutes. Pour in the reserved green puree and stir to combine. Transfer to a 4-quart baking dish, cover with foil and bake until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, 30 – 35 minutes. Stir with a fork and serve hot.


From: What’s Cooking America

2 whole chicken breasts, boneless and skinless

1 pound tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and quartered

1 onion, chopped

3 cloves garlic, chopped or minced

1 Russet potato, peeled and quartered

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 to 2 fresh jalapeno chile peppers (stems and seeds removed) or according to your taste

4 cups chicken broth or stock

3 cups water

Coarse salt and coarsely-ground black pepper, to taste

1/4 cup sour cream

2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves

Prepare Tomatillos: Remove the husks before using, the husks are inedible. Tomatillos are very easy to cook with because they don’t need to be peeled or seeded. Their texture is firm when raw, but soften when cooked. Rinse before using as the tomatillo is covered by a sticky substance. Do not peel the green skin.

In a large soup pot (or cast-iron Dutch oven) over medium heat, add chicken, onion, garlic, tomatillos, potato, oregano, chile pepper, chicken stock, and water; cover and bring just to a boil. Reduce head to low and simmer 20 to 30 minutes until chicken is tender and the meat falls from the bone. Remove chicken from the pot to a bowl or plate and set aside to cool (when cool, take meat from the bones and shred into pieces). Refrigerate cooked chicken until ready to use.

Remove the soup pot from the heat and let the vegetables and broth cool slightly.

Working in batches, puree the vegetable and broth in a blender or food processor.

When ready to serve, reheat the vegetable soup puree over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until hot. Adjust seasoning if necessary.

To serve, place a small pile of the shredded chicken into each soup bowl. Ladle the pureed soup around the pile of chicken in each bowl. Top each bowl of soup with sour cream and cilantro.


Usually, when a recipe (like the tagine below), calls for cilantro, I automatically substitute parsley. But here are some ways to use this strong-flavored herb. It’s packed with vitamins and anti-oxidants, so if you like it, you’ll benefit by using it often. ‘

Ideas from the Kripalu blog (

  • Add cilantro into a stir-fry, toward the end of cooking to maintain the fresh flavor and oils that can stimulate digestion and minimize gastric distress.
  • Chop and toss into some of the fresh herb into guacamole.
  • Dab it. Essential oil of cilantro can be used topically to minimize skin inflammation. To use, add a small amount (a couple of drops) to your favorite cold sesame oil or almond oil for a light, soothing massage.
  • Throw a handful into a smoothie.  The oils in cilantro have powerful antimicrobial benefits. Add in its antioxidant profile, and cilantro is a detoxification superfood.
  • Stew a coconut curry. There’s nothing like a warming, ginger-cilantro curry to nourish and soothe.
  • Chop it like salad and eat a whole bunch! John Bagnulo recommends eating cilantro in higher amounts (tasty with chopped peanuts, mango, and crisp green lettuce) to boost gastrointestinal processes.
  • Season your dishes. Cilantro Mint Chutney (below)  is a staple in the Kripalu Dining Hall and goes well with many dishes, such as rice biryani, mixed vegetables, or quinoa and beans. See recipe below.
  • Finish sesame noodles with fresh, chopped peanuts and cilantro.
  • Garnish. A friend recently taught me to cook Brussels sprouts by roasting them in the oven for ten minutes, then searing them in a pan at a high heat to lightly blacken, then adding a dash of soy sauce, garlic, chopped cilantro, and a squeeze of lime juice. This is a show stopper! I served these for Thanksgiving and everyone fought for the last of the sprouts.
  • Add cilantro to a fresh-pressed juice for a cooling effect


Makes 1½ cups.

1 bunch cilantro, chopped

¼ cup mint, chopped

3 shoots green onion

¼ teaspoon jalapeno or more (to taste)

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoons minced ginger

2 tablespoons lime juice

¼ teaspoon salt

Make sure to rinse your cilantro well before chopping. Then combine everything in a food processor and pulse to combine.


The Kitchn


1/2 large head green cabbage, very finely chopped

1/2 cup peanuts, chopped

1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions

1 bunch cilantro, chopped (use at least 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, or more)

salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Dressing Ingredients:

2 T rice vinegar (not seasoned)

1 T agave nectar, honey, sugar, Splenda, or Stevia in the Raw granulated (Use Stevia or Splenda for Phase One version)

2 tsp. sesame oil

2 tsp. soy sauce

1 tsp. Sriracha or other hot sauce (or less, or this can be left out for a less spicy version)

1/4 cup canola or peanut oil


Cut cabbage head in half and save half for another salad. Remove core from the half you’re using, then cut cabbage into very thin slices (less than 1/4 inch) and turn cutting board the other direction and cut again to chop into very small pieces. Thinly slice green onions, chop cilantro, and chop peanuts.

In a bowl or glass measuring cup, mix together rice vinegar, sweetener of your choice, sesame oil, soy sauce, and Sriracha sauce if using. Use a whisk to mix in oil until dressing is well-combined.

In large plastic or glass bowl, gently combine chopped cabbage, sliced green onions, and chopped cilantro. Add dressing a little at a time, until salad seems as wet as you’d like it. (You may not need all the dressing.) Add chopped peanuts, and stir a few times until peanuts are mixed in. Taste salad for seasoning, and add salt and freshly ground black pepper as desired. Serve immediately.


½ cup sour cream

¾ cups chopped cilantro leaves

1 tsp. lime juice (or lemon juice)

¼ tsp salt

Mix all ingredients; serve over potatoes, as salad dressing, or with salmon or other fish.


By Christine Benlafquih, Guide

Cinnamon and honey are surprisingly delicious additions to this Moroccan tagine of chicken and tomatoes. The chicken is stewed until tender with lots of tomatoes, which reduce to a thick, sweet puree. A garnish of toasted sesame seeds and fried almonds add nutty contrast.

Serves 4.

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 55 minutes

1 chicken, whole or cut into pieces

6 or 7 tomatoes (approx. 3 lb.)

3 tablespoons butter

1 small onion, grated

2 or 3 cloves of garlic, pressed

small handful of fresh cilantro (coriander), finely chopped

1 1/4 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

1/4 teaspoon turmeric

1/4 teaspoon saffron threads, crumbled

1 cinnamon stick

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds (golden unhulled if possible)

handful of toasted almonds

Peel, seed and chop the tomatoes. Place them in a heavy, wide pot along with the butter, grated onion, garlic, cilantro, and spices. Stir to mix, then add the chicken.

Cover and bring the chicken to a rapid simmer over medium heat. (Do not add water.) Continue cooking, covered, for about an hour or until the chicken is very tender. Turn the chicken occasionally while it cooks.

When the chicken is tender, carefully transfer it to a plate. Add the honey and ground cinnamon to the pot, and reduce the tomatoes to a thick, sweet puree. Stir frequently and adjust the heat to prevent the sauce from burning.

Return the chicken to the pot to reheat gently for five to ten minutes, turning the meat once or twice. Arrange the chicken on a platter and cover with the sauce. Garnish with the sesame seeds and fried almonds, and serve.

Mushroom Share


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