Quart 'o' Baby Bells
German Extra Hearty Garlic
Jericho Romaine Lettuce
New Red Fire Head Lettuce
Italian Flat Leaf Parsley
Big Ole' Bell Peppers
Soma Sweet Sage
Notes from the Farm
I am unnaturally excited about the food in this week's share, and I can't fully wrap my head around the reasons...
It might be that there are some new foods we haven't had yet this season. It might be that we have more time in our days, these days, to take some appreciative cooking moments. It might be that I'm just excited... Any way you spoon the pudding, I'm excited, and really it's only the outcome that matters in the throws of epicurean ecstasy.
So, lets do this... cook something great this week... I mean, farms are great, it's good to support local agriculture, and thank you for the support, but when we get right down to the meat of this whole CSA scene we're a part of, well, it's really about cramming your pie-hole with nutritively dense, flavorful fresh food... so break out the salt, butter and bacon... it's pie-hole time...
Butternut Squash with Sage
2 tablespoons butter
2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 3/4-inch chunks
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage (or 1/2 teaspoon dried)
1. Melt butter in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add butternut squash. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing frequently, until squash is lightly browned, 5 to 6 minutes.
2. Add 1/4 cup water, and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover, and cook until squash is fork-tender, 8 to 10 minutes.
3. Toss with sage.
Brussels Sprouts with Maple and Cayenne
1 Stock brussels sprouts, taken off the stock, trimmed and halved lengthwise
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss brussels sprouts with olive oil; season with salt. Roast until brussels sprouts are browned in spots and tender when pierced with a knife, 15 to 20 minutes, stirring halfway through. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine syrup and cayenne pepper. Drizzle brussels sprouts with maple syrup mixture, stir to coat, and roast 1 minute.
8 tablespoons olive oil
1 large eggplant (about 1 pound), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 green bell pepper (ribs and seeds removed), finely chopped
1 zucchini (about 8 ounces), quartered lengthwise, sliced 1/4-inch-thick crosswise
1 garlic clove, minced
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 pound ground beef chuck
1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 pound rigatoni or other short tubular pasta
Parmesan cheese, shaved
1. In a Dutch oven or large (5-quart) saucepan with a lid, heat 6 tablespoons oil over medium-high. Add eggplant; cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a bowl; set aside.
2. Add remaining 2 tablespoons oil to pan; reduce heat to medium. Add onion, bell pepper, zucchini, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables have softened, 7 to 10 minutes.
3. Add beef; cook, stirring and breaking up meat with a spoon, until no longer pink, 5 minutes.
4. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, add tomatoes, oregano, and eggplant to beef-vegetable mixture; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce is thick and eggplant is tender, about 25 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Meanwhile, cook pasta until al dente, according to package instructions. Drain; serve topped with sauce and, if desired, Parmesan.