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Heads UP! CSA for October 2nd

Something I’ve learned in the CSA is that the one word to describe our members best is ‘courageous’. You go after what you really love, you take charge of your own health and you create delicious recipes out of simple vegetables that make dinner a better place. You have the guts to get back to your roots, connect with your farmers and make sure you get the fresh, organic food you deserve – completely setting the standard for what NATURAL really means. That’s courage and together, by supporting small business and farms, we can continue to make sure that these options exist for generations to come.

October 2nd CSA contains:
BLUE LAKE GREEN BEANS
ROMAINE LETTUCE
CARROTS
RED TOMATOES
PURPLE GLOBE EGGPLANTS
POTATOES
GREEN ZUCCHINI
AMBROSIA MELON
RED BELL PEPPERS
CHIVES
BIG BOX ADD: CARROTS, DINOSOUR KALE, SALAD MIX, BARTLETT PEARS, CELERY

We have run through all the vegetables and the corresponding highlights on their nutritional tips. If you’d like to hear about something specific feel free to contact me. I’m in process of organizing them on our website. We are expanding out to other important things in the kitchen like seasoning and here’s a tip from Dani, our local nutritionist, on how to squeeze a little more health out of your seasoning routine:

Seasonings and spices are a great way to make your vegetables dishes delicious and nutritious! In a small quantity they give a huge boost. Have you ever considered seaweed as a seasoning? Seaweed provides minerals that most Americans are lacking in. It’s rich in magnesium, chromium and even iodine. Seaweed nourishes thyroid gland and helps prevent goiter. It naturally increases metabolism and aids in digestion. And is incredible for making the hair voluminous, shiny and lustrous! Some seaweed’s like arame, hiziki and kombu are powerful detoxifying agents that can help remove radioactive elements from the body. They even have been shown to have anti-cancer properties! Kelp has antibacterial and anti-viral abilities and is especially therapeutic for thyroid health. So how do we get this amazing food into our diets! My recommendation for starting out with seaweeds is always to try Bragg’s Seaweed Delight which blends kelp with other spices and makes a salty, Asian spice blend. Stir fry up that eggplant and zucchini from your box and sprinkle some healthful seaweed for an Asian flair!

By Dani Rhoades, N.C., Nutrition Consultant, www.wholesomepractices.com
Sources: Foundations of Nutrition by Ed Bauman

Eggplant has always been one of those vegetables that I’m a little uneasy cooking with. It’s a texture thing for me. But Martha Stewart got me all fired up to use one of her 31 recipes listed here (and one below). If you need some inspiration and don’t think the recipe below fits into your dinner plans please check out her website.

Ratatouille
(This hearty country dish from the Provence region of France is an easy mix of summer vegetables, garlic, and olive oil. Enjoy a bowl of it with crusty bread, or use it as a jumping-off point for breakfast, appetizers, or pasta dishes.)
yum!
Ingredients:
1 can (28 ounces) whole peeled tomatoes
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large eggplant (1 pound), cut into 1-inch pieces
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 large yellow onions (1 pound total), diced large
1 head garlic, cloves smashed and peeled
2 bell peppers (any color), seeded and diced large
2-3 zucchini (1 pound total), diced large
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon fresh marjoram or oregano leaves
2 to 3 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
Directions:
Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place tomatoes and juices on a rimmed baking sheet and use your hands to break tomatoes into 3/4-inch pieces. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons oil and bake until thickened, 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
Step 2: Meanwhile, in a colander, toss eggplant with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Let sit 20 minutes, then squeeze out excess liquid. In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat 4 tablespoons oil over medium. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until onions and garlic are soft, 5 minutes. Add peppers and cook, stirring, until crisp-tender, 4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Step 3: Add tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini, bay leaf, and marjoram to pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mixture comes to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low, partially cover, and cook at a gentle simmer until vegetables are tender but not mushy, 15 minutes. Season to taste with vinegar, salt, and pepper. Remove bay leaf before serving.

Salmon and Zucchini Baked in Parchment
(It seems like there isn’t enough time in the day. Check out this quick and nutritious dinner. Put on a pot of rice when the salmon goes into the oven. Both will be done at the same time, and you’ll have a complete dinner, with only one pot to wash.)

Ingredients: Serves 2
2 small zucchini, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
2 shallot, thinly sliced
2 tablespoon butter, cut into pieces
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
2 lemon slices, halved, plus 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
coarse salt and ground pepper
2 skinless salmon fillet (6 to 8 ounces each)
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Fold 2 large pieces of parchment paper (about 15 by 16 inches) in half to crease it; open, and lay them flat.
On one side of crease, mound zucchini; top with shallot, butter, dill, and lemon slices. Season with salt and pepper. Place salmon on top; drizzle with lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper.
To close, fold parchment over salmon; make small overlapping pleats to seal the open sides and create a half-moon-shaped packet. Place on a rimmed baking sheet; bake until salmon is opaque throughout, 15 to 17 minutes. Serve.
(Recipe from www.marthastewart.com)

Feta, Green Bean and Potato Salad
(Briny Kalamata olives and a vinegary feta cheese dressing gives this potato salad lots of flavor. The vinegary dressing made from Sherry vinegar and a splash of lemon juice really brightens up the potatoes.)

Editors notes: If you are unable to find Sherry Vinegar, Champagne or red wine vinegar are good substitutes.
Ingredients: makes 8 cups
•1 pound potatoes (2lbs in your CSA box)
•1 pound green beans, ends trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (4 cups) (1lb exactly in your box)
•1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved
•1 tablespoon finely chopped spring onion (or any mild or sweet yellow onion)
•1 tablespoon finely chopped chives
•2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
•3 tablespoons olive oil
•2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard
•2 teaspoons lemon juice
•2 ounces feta cheese
•Salt and black pepper, to taste
Directions:
1.In a pot, cover potatoes with 2 inches of water. Season with salt — 1 teaspoon for every quart of water. Bring water to a boil then reduce to a low simmer. Cook 15 to 20 minutes or until potatoes can easily be pierced with a fork.
2.While potatoes cook, set up an ice bath. Add cold water to a medium bowl then add ice. Transfer potatoes to ice bath. Then, slice potatoes into 1/2-inch rounds.
3.Bring water that potatoes were cooked in to a boil then add green beans. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until bright green and crisp-tender. Set up a second ice bath. Transfer green beans to ice bath.
4.Combine potatoes, green beans, olives, onion and the chives in a large bowl.
5.Whisk vinegar, olive oil, mustard and the lemon juice until creamy. Add the feta cheese, stir well then season with salt and pepper. Toss salad with dressing to coat.
6.Leave at room temperature 10 to 15 minutes. Toss again, season with salt and pepper (as needed) then serve.
(Recipe from www.inspiredtaste.net)

October 2nd JUICE FEAST contains:
CARROTS
ROMAINE LETTUCE
CUCUMBERS
DINOSOUR KALE
PARSLEY
CELERY
FENNEL
FUJI APPLES from GIVENS ORCHARD
BARTLETT PEARS
DANDELION GREENS

When it comes to sugar I know that less is more, but when it comes to my juice I want it to taste good so I make sure to drink at least 32oz/day. Make sure to throw in enough apples, carrots or other fruit to your liking. This way you can add in dandelion greens and not even flinch!
I’ve been really busy this week and haven’t had a chance to follow any recipes. My go to juice contains: kale, romaine, celery, fennel, parsley or cilantro, lemon or lime, turmeric, ginger, dandelion greens, carrots and cucumber. It’s a filling concoction and has helped wean me off my afternoon coffee addiction with it’s natural high.

Organic or conventional…is it even a question? Well – when it comes to the price and availability we might be asking ourselves…”is it worth it??” Here’s some great thoughts from our local nutritionist Dani Rhoades:

Choosing organic is one of the most powerful choices you could be making. It might seem like a light decision to choose organic over conventionally raised produce, but the benefits are far and wide. Choosing organic guarantees that you are avoiding toxic chemicals, deadly pathogens, genetically modified foods, hormones, antibiotics, irradiation, synthetic fertilizers and nutrient-less food! Conventionally grown plant foods can have up to 40% less nutrients than organically grown produce and amongst these nutrients are Vitamin C, phosphorus, calcium, iron, vitamin B2 and others! Other studies have shown similar results especially in the areas of antioxidant levels. Especially when juicing, it’s absolutely critical to use organic produce as you’d be getting a saturated amount of concentrated chemicals in your juice- clearly well worth avoiding! With organic it’s two-fold, a lack of toxins and load of nutrients!

By: Dani Rhoades, NC, Certified Nutrition Consultant, www.wholesomepractices.com
Sources: Foundations of Nutrition by Ed Bauman