Week #39 (2/24 only)

This week your basket contains: potatoes, cipollini onions, winter salad mix (arugula, Belgian endive, French sorrel, bok choi, and cabbage), winter squash (spaghetti squash or Delicata) and leeks.

While most of our tender greens have yet to recover from the cold weather we’ve been experiencing, mustard greens in one of our hoop houses are doing quite well as are the small bok choi and arugula allowing us to harvest two nice mixes for you the past two weeks. This week’s mix would work well in stir fry, soups or (if you are adventurous) as a hearty winter salad.  This recipe for soup from Cucina! Cucina! printed in Foodday is well adapted to winter vegetables.  Use your greens in place of the spinach.

LENTIL AND SAUSAGE SOUP

1 Tbs. unsalted butter

1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil

1 lb. Italian sausage links

½ c. finely diced onion

½ c. finely diced carrot

¼ c. finely diced leeks

¼ c. finely diced celery or celeriac

1 ½ c. uncooked lentils

4 c. low-sodium chicken broth

1 c. whipping cream

2 Tbs. Dijon mustard (or less)

1 Tbs. red wine vinegar

1 c. finely sliced mixed greens

salt and pepper

In a heavy-bottomed 2-3 quart saucepan, heat the butter and oil until the butter is melted.  Add the sausage links and brown evenly on all sides.  Cook for about 5 minutes or until sausages are cooked through.  Remove from pan and allow to cool.  Add the onion, carrot, leeks and celery or celeriac to the remaining butter in pan.  Cook over medium-high heat until the vegetables are tender.  Add the lentils and chicken broth.  Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to prevent lentils from sticking.  Hen broth comes to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook until lentils are tender, 40-45 minutes.  While soup is simmering, cut sausages into ¼ inch slices.  When lentils are tender, add sausage, cream, mustard, vinegar and three quarters of the greens.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Return soup to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 5 more minutes.  Serve in warm bowls with remaining greens divided among bowls and garnish with grated Parmesan cheese if desired.  Serves 8.

Leeks have withstood the brutal weather of this winter quite well. We will be giving more, but smaller, leeks in the coming weeks. This week the cipollinis in your basket could be used with the leeks to add a subtle sweetness to this recipe:

COTTAGE CHEESE AND LEEK PIE

 2 Tbsp butter

4 cups sliced leeks (3 or 4 leeks)

2 Tbsp flour

1/4 cup milk

1/2 tsp each salt, dry mustard

1/8 tsp each nutmeg, pepper

2 cups cottage cheese

3 eggs

1 single pie crust, unbaked

Sauté leeks in butter until tender, about 10 minutes.  Stir in flour, cook a few minutes, add milk and cook till thick.  Add seasonings.  Cool to lukewarm.  Blend cottage cheese with eggs.  Stir into leek mixture.  Pour into pie shell.

Bake at 375º for 45 minutes or till browned.  Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

LEONIE’S POTATO-LEEK SOUP

4 medium potatoes

4 Tbsp. butter

1 chopped leek

3/4 tsp. salt

6 cups stock or water

ground black pepper

snippets of fresh herbs: thyme, marjoram, basil

Chop leeks, including the greens, into ½ inch rounds, place into a bowl of cold water with 1 tsp of salt.  Leave soaking for ½ hour.   Clean and peel potatoes and dice into 1″ chunks.   Drain leeks and sauté in a saucepan with butter until translucent.  Add potatoes, stock, and seasonings.   Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender.   When done, puree the contents of the pan, making sure the puree is absolutely smooth. Return to the saucepan.   Thin with milk if soup is too thick. Heat gently, covered, until just hot. Do not boil.  Taste and adjust seasonings.  For a wonderful touch, swirl a Tbsp. of heavy cream into each bowl before serving.  Serves 4-6.

OUR CHICKENS HAVE STARTED TO LAY EGGS AGAIN. If you are on our egg list from last year, we will try to start giving you eggs again. If you want to be added to or removed from the list, please send us an email!

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