This week your basket contains: potatoes, cauliflower or Romanesco, RUTABAGA, Brussels sprouts, garlic, beets, collards, winter squash, and leeks.
This is the first of two larger baskets we will be delivering prior to the holidays. Our December schedule will be as follows: Double baskets on 12/12 & 19; skip deliveries on 12/26 & 1/2; resume normal deliveries on 1/09. This info is also posted on the home page of our web site.
After nearly 30 years of farming, rutabagas remain a bit of a mystery to us. It seems that they either fail, or grow so huge we almost can’t put them in your baskets (hence many were cut in half today). Rutabagas are not a common element in most people’s diet. However, they add an umami flavor to any dish they appear in. The easiest way to use them is to add them to the mix of root vegetables you will be roasting. This recipe is another way to use them that is popular in our home.
CREAMY, SMOKY WHIPPED RUTABAGA
3 1/2 to 4 pounds rutabagas (two small or one large vegetable)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 garlic cloves, peeled and roughly chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 cup whole milk
4 ounces cream cheese, cut into small chunks
2 tablespoons smoked olive oil
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
Freshly ground black pepper
Cut the rutabaga(s) in half crosswise. Place a half cut side down on a stabilized cutting board and carefully shave off the peel with a large chef’s knife. Cut the peeled rutabaga into small slices about 1 inch thick. Repeat with the rest of the rutabaga. Heat the butter in a large, heavy 4-quart pot, set over medium heat. When the butter has melted, stir in the chopped rutabaga and the garlic. Stir to coat the vegetables in butter, then sprinkle them with the salt. Pour in the milk and bring to a simmer, then turn the heat to low and cover the pot. Cook for 30 minutes, or until the rutabaga is very tender and can be easily pierced with a fork. Turn off the heat and remove the lid. Let the vegetables cool for about 5 minutes. At this point you can either leave the rutabaga in the pot and use a hand mixer to whip it, or you can transfer it to the bowl of a stand mixer and use the paddle. Drop the cream cheese into the rutabaga and use the hand mixer or stand mixer to mash it into the vegetables. The rutabaga will crumble then slowly turn into a mashed potato consistency. Add the olive oil and smoked paprika and mix thoroughly. Taste and add more salt and some black pepper, if necessary. Serve immediately. Adapted from thekitchn.com.
BRAISED LENTILS WITH GREENS AND BACON
1 ½ lb. greens
1 bay leaf
4 c. low-sodium chicken broth
1 ½ c. French lentils
5-6 slices bacon
1 large onion, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. paprika
½ c. dry red or white wine
1 ½ Tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
sugar to taste
sherry vinegar or lemon juice to taste
Bring 4 quarts of salted water to a boil. Remove greens from thick stems. Coarsely chop greens and finer stems. Finely chop the coarse stems and set aside. After rinsing leaves, add them to boiling water and cook until tender, about 4 minutes. Immediately drain greens and transfer to a bowl of cold water. Once greens have cooled, squeeze firmly to remove excess liquid. Set aside. Meanwhile, add bay leaf to chicken stock and bring to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add lentils and simmer until tender, 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
Cut bacon crosswise into 1/3-inch-wide pieces. Brown the bacon in large Dutch oven over medium heat. Transfer pieces to paper towel-lined plate and set aside. Discard all but 2-3 Tbsp. rendered fat; add stems, onion, carrot and large pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until very soft, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and continue to cook until vegetables begin to brown and stick to pan. Add paprika and cook, stirring constantly, until aromatic and toasted, about 1 minute. Add wine, thyme and large pinch of sugar; cook until liquid has evaporated, 1-2 minutes. Stir in lentils and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover pot, and cook until flavors have blended, about 20 minutes. Stir in cooked greens, adjust seasonings with salt, pepper, sugar and sherry vinegar or lemon juice to taste. Serve immediately, garnished with reserved bacon. From FOODAY.
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