Week #48 4/21 & 24

This week your basket contains: radishes, potatoes, mustard greens, salad mix (lettuce, spinach, arugula, and endive), TURNIPS (full shares) or turnip greens (half shares), joi choi, MINT and Purple Sprouting Broccoli or raab or cauliflower.

 The potatoes we have been getting from Patrick Thiel seem to have gotten frost damage in storage. We’re sorry that so many of them have black spots inside. We tried hard this week to figure out which are bad, but it is difficult to tell. We gave them for a last time, hoping that you can use a percentage of them. The ones we have been eating are tasty, but hard to use.

Thanks to all of you that have gone to our new online garden starts store pumpkinridgegardens.square.site and ordered the plants you need. Some families have encouraged their neighbors to order! We can deliver their plants with your basket if they note that on their plant order online. I will package them separately. Although the web site states that pick up is the only option, we will deliver the starts as they are ready. This means that you may get a couple of deliveries as frost-sensitive plants are not ready at the same time as their hardier brethren. I will keep track of what has been filled and what is yet to come.

In addition to offering cheese from Fraga farm, we are also partnering with Cloud Cap mushroom farm! Right now, they are offering a mix of Shitake and Oyster mushrooms that we can deliver with your basket. Visit Cloud Cap’s website and click on Pumpkin Ridge Gardens to order directly through the site (credit/debit card only) at www.cloudcapmushroom.co/pumpkin-ridge-gardens.

Thank you also to those of you who have ordered flowers each week, two weeks or month! As soon as I have a good selection and two good legs, I look forward to making beautiful bouquets for you to enjoy! The flowers are $7/bunch.

Mustard greens love April! The joi choi in your basket is mild with crunchy stems and can be used raw or cooked. The mustard green leaves, both red and green, are spicy! If they are a little hot for your taste, cooking them makes them milder. Smoked paprika is a good substitute for the smoky bacon in the soup below.

PORTABELLO MUSHROOMS FILLED WITH BOK CHOY AND MINT

4 medium sized portabello mushrooms
sea salt/ fresh cracked pepper
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 fresh mozzarella balls, sliced
1 bok choy, chopped
1 tbsp. ginger, sliced
2 tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp. fresh mint, chopped
1 lemon, juiced
½ onion, sliced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove the stems of the mushrooms, place on a baking sheet, season, and sprinkle with fresh lemon juice. Place in the oven for approx. 4-5 minutes. Remove and put aside. In a sauce pan add 1 tbsp. Olive oil, heat, add onion, season, and sauté for 2 minutes, add ginger and bok choy and sauté an additional minute, add fresh mint  Place the sauté in the mushrooms, top with fresh mozzarella and place back in the oven for 5-7 minutes.  Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and serve.

SMOKY MUSTARD GREENS SOUP

½ lb. sweet Italian sausage

¼ lb. smoky Canadian bacon, diced

2 cups diced onions (or leeks)

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 cups thick tomato puree

4 cups chicken broth

8 cups finely chopped mustard greens

salt and pepper

Remove the casings and brown the sausage, breaking it up with a spoon. Remove the sausage from the pan and drain off all but 1 Tbs. of fat (if using chicken sausage, you may need to add some olive oil). Sauté the bacon, onions, and garlic in the fat until the onions are limp, about 5 minutes. Add the tomato puree, chicken broth, and sausage. Simmer the soup for 10 minutes. Add the chopped mustard greens and simmer the soup long enough to wilt the greens; they should be bright green and tender in about 3-5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve hot. Serves 6. From Joy of Gardening Cookbook by Janet Ballantyne.

RHUBARB is ready. We’ll send along approx. 1 Lb. for $3.  Just email to order.

Week #39 (2/18 & 21)

This week your basket contains: leeks, onions, carrots, potatoes, cabbage, and greens mix (kale, collards, and cabbage) 

Harvesting the kale yesterday we were seeing many little broccoli-like flower buds which are a sign of new spring growth to come.  We added them to this mix for a tasty little treat they call cimi di rapa in Italy.  This would be a great way to use your greens mix and/or your cabbage.

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

salt

6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1 Tbsp. paprika

½ c. dry red or white wine

1 ½ Tbsp. fresh thyme leaves

sugar to taste

black pepper

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.

PENNE WITH KALE AND POTATOES

½ lb. kale

2-3 Tbs. salt

1 large yellow-fleshed potato, ¾” cubes

14-16 oz. uncooked penne pasta

1-2 cloves garlic, chopped

3-4 Tbs. olive oil

fresh black pepper to taste

Clean the kale, removing tough ribs, and cut it into thin strips.  Bring 5-6 quarts of water to a rolling boil, add salt, potatoes and kale, cook for 5 minutes.  Add pasta and cook for ¾ of recommended time (should offer considerable resistance to the tooth).  Meanwhile, put the garlic in a large skillet and drizzle with 1 Tbs. olive oil over moderate heat.  When garlic begins to sizzle, remove from heat.  Drain pasta and vegetables, reserving 2 cups of the cooking water.  Add the pasta and vegetables to the garlic in the skillet and add 1 cup of the cooking water.  Cook over high heat, covered, until the pasta is done and surrounded by a creamy sauce.  Add more cooking water as needed.  Serve in bowls, topped with a drizzle of remaining olive oil and pepper.  Serves 8.  Adapted from Red, White and Greens by Faith Willinger. 

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