Previous month:
April 2007
Next month:
June 2007

Clagett Farm Recipes~Untapped Resources

Photos and Recipes~Rita Calvert 2007

So the message this week appears to be don’t discredit the stems and leaves! Again big time health benefits and/or essence for stock.

Tidbits Overheard at the farm while picking a few strawberries:
A “new to Clagett” young couple are grateful to be part of the CSA team. They missed out 2006 season and got on the waiting list for 2007. Now happily eating lush flavorful produce, they wonder why Clagett can’t just grow more!!  Farmer Carrie, maybe folks need to understand all that you handle and the complex system to expand growing areas!

Untapped Resources

Serves 2
In the directions below we use the steam saute technique. The water should cover the bottom of the pan up to about  1-inch.

1 tablespoon Asian toasted sesame oil
1 inch fresh water
8 ounces baby carrots
3 baby white turnips scrubbed with leaves and stems coarsely chopped
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
fresh thyme leaves, chopped

In a medium skillet, place the oil and water and heat until boiling on high. When boiling, add the carrots, turnips, leaves, stems and cover with a lid. Continue steaming until tender when pierced with a fork. Time will vary with the size of your pan but generally after 4-6 minutes. Remove vegetables (you can display them separately or mixed) and sprinkle with salt, pepper and fresh thyme.
Dscn1859_25

Steak and Lettuce Wraps

Serves 4

Our sprightly spring lettuce replaces a tortilla or rice pancake in this casual fare.

1 pound flank steak
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 cup diced peeled cucumber
4  radishes, thinly sliced
1/4 cup thinly sliced garlic scallions
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 head Boston  or Bibb lettuce, leaves separated

Preheat grill to medium-high. Sprinkle steak with salt and pepper. Oil the grill rack (see Tip). Grill the steak for 6 to 8 minutes per side for medium. Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Cut across the grain into thin slices.

Combine the sliced steak, cucumber, radish, garlic scallions, mint, basil and cilantro in a large bowl. Mix sugar, soy sauce, lime juice and crushed red pepper in a small bowl. Drizzle over the steak mixture; toss well to coat. To serve, spoon a portion of the steak mixture into a lettuce leaf and roll into a 'wrap.'

Grated Carrot and Black Olive Salad
Serves 3-4
from Simplicity from a Monastery Kitchen by Brother Victor-Antoine d’Avila-Latourrette

5 large carrots, sliced julienne style
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
2 green onions or 1 shallot, thinly sliced
15 medium whole black olives, pitted
4 tablespoons good olive oil
2 tablespoons wine vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
sea salt and pepper  to taste

Place the julienned carrots in a big deep bowl. Add the parsley, shallots, and black olives. Mix well.

In a separate bowl, place the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper, and mix thoroughly with a fork until a smooth sauce is achieved. Pour the sauce over the carrot mixture and mix the ingredients well. Refrigerate the salad and keep cold until ready to serve.

Carrot Yogurt Soup

Serves 4-6

We’re making everything with those Clagett sweet baby carrots so this recipe is adapted from Sunset's Make-Ahead Cookbook

2 tablespoon cooking oil
2 large garlic scallions chopped (should be cut in half, cleaned and then white and light green parts chopped. The dark green parts can be tossed or used to make stock.)
1 garlic clove or 1 stalk green garlic, chopped
1 teaspoon each curry powder and flour
3 cups stock: chicken or vegetable
3 large or 6 medium or 1 pound baby carrots, scrubbed and sliced
1 cup plain yogurt
cayenne pepper, ground
1/3 cup chopped, toasted salted peanuts

Heat oil in 3-4 quart pan over med. heat. When oil is hot, add onion, then garlic, stirring, until onion is soft. (About 10 minutes). Add curry powder and flour; continue to cook, stirring, for about 30 seconds. Add broth and carrots. Cover and simmer until carrots are tender when pierced (15 to 20 minutes).

Blend with immersion blender, food processor or regular blender with 3/4 cup of the yogurt until pureed. Season to taste with S and P and cayenne (use sparingly!). Let cool; cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day or freeze for up for 4 months.) Thaw overnight or defrost in microwave.

To serve: Serve at room temperature or hot. Garnish with peanuts, yogurt, and if you like carrot curls you can make by using a vegetable peeler and 'peeling' long carrot curls from a carrot. Put these curls in a small bowl of ice water to help them stay curly and crunchy before you serve them in the soup.

Toasted Anise Strips

Serves 12

These lovely bar cookies are actually a style biscotti (meaning twice baked). You can also add chopped lavendar leaves and any herb with a lemon essence. The cookies are great with the Chilled Strawberry Soup.

1/4 cup butter (no substitutes), softened
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tablespoon anise extract
1 tablespoon freshly chopped anise hyssop
2 1/2 cups cake flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add extract. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; add to creamed mixture and mix well. Spread half of the batter onto a greased baking sheet, forming an 11-in. x 5-in. rectangle. Repeat with remaining batter on a second baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes. Remove from baking sheets; cut into 1-in. slices. Place with cut side down on baking sheets. Bake 15 minutes longer or until lightly browned. Cool on wire racks.

Chilled Strawberry Soup

Serves 4

This recipe is “just in case” you get too many strawberries although Clagett’s this year are so sweet they don’t last long enough for soup!

1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 cups very cold water
2½ cups fresh strawberries (save a few to use as a garnish)
2 tablespoons sugar
Juice and zest of one lime
1 cup unsweetened apple juice
½ cup nonfat vanilla yogurt

Mix cornstarch with 1 cup of the cold water. In a saucepan, combine blueberries, cornstarch mixture, remaining water, sugar, lime juice and zest, and apple juice. Cook over low heat for about 12 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.  Allow mixture to cool for 30 minutes. Mix in a blender or food processor until smooth.  Chill well, at least one hour, then pour soup into bowls.  Swirl a dollop of yogurt into each bowl. Garnish with berries, and serve.

Dscn1850_6
The horses and their babies were fed a few treats from the Clagett trimmings of carrots and garlic scallions.


Clagett Farm Recipes~Burst of Spring Pickins’ 2007

by Rita Calvert, a chef and worksharer at Clagett Farm

Number One item: It's great to be back in touch with ya'll after what seemed like a long drawn-out winter. We were really just waiting to get back to the farm for some good "Farm chit chat"!

Mother Nature's Little Secret

We bet you didn't realize that those spicy somewhat bitter greens such as the “spicy mix” containing peppery arugula or watercress pack a whollop of nutrition. It has been said by an Indian chef that Americans need to be converted to the "bitter" taste. So load up and blend these greens with milder ones.

Tips & Tidbits

I overhead a mom saying she spreads peanut butter on just the stems of bok choy to feed her 6 & 7  year old children. The bok choy is finished before they realize it’s not celery.

Chesapeake Spring Salad

Serves 4

Since local is important, as well as organic, I will attempt to bring you recipes with suggestions and sources for locally and sustainably-produced products.

6 cups Clagett Farm romaine and salad greens
1 cup fresh strawberries, halved lengthwise
1/2 cup “Chesapeake Honey” Walnuts (see below)
Chapel Country Creamery Cave Aged Chapelle Cheese, shaved
Herbes de Clagett Vinaigrette (see below)

“Chesapeake Honey” Walnuts
2 cups walnut halves
1/2 cup local honey
sprinkle sea salt
Place the walnuts on a greased microwave safe plate. Drizzle with honey and toss. Sprinkle lightly with salt. Microwave for 2-3 minutes, tossing every minute to coat. Spread warm nuts on wax paper in a single layer to cool.

Herbes de Clagett Vinaigrette
4 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons peeled fresh garlic
8 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 tablespoons chopped lemon zest
4 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (parsley, basil, oregano, thyme)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Freshly ground black pepper
To make the Vinaigrette: in a small food processor, combine all ingredients and blend for 45 seconds to 1 minute until emulsified.

To assemble the salad:
Line plates with greens. Top with strawberries, walnuts and cheese shavings. Drizzle with vinaigrette.
Ritas_chesapeake_spring_salad

Black Bean Vegetable Soup with Locally Grown Toppings
                      
Serves 6-8

Half of the black beans in this spicy soup are pureed with tomatoes, the other half are simmered with carrots, onion and other veggies.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 carrots, chopped
6 leaves bok choy, chopped
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
4 cups vegetable stock
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup salsa (your choice of spiciness)

Locally Grown Toppings
thinly sliced garlic chives
grated cheddar cheese
chopped fresh radish

In large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat; cook onion, garlic, and carrots, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until onion is softened. Add chili powder and cumin; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add stock, 1 can of the beans.
Meanwhile, in food processor or blender, puree together tomatoes and remaining can of beans; add to pot. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until carrots are tender. Finally, add salsa and black pepper.  Serve with your choice of toppings.
Ritas_black_bean_soup


Farm and Sea Salad

Serves 4

2 (6 ounce) cans tuna, drained
1/4 cup finely diced celery
3 tablespoons chopped walnuts
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup finely scallion salt & black pepper to taste
1 medium head romaine lettuce, chopped
1/3 cup chopped radish

Sunflower Seed Dressing
3 medium cloves garlic, pressed
1 tablespoons prepared Dijon mustard
1 tsp honey
cracked black pepper
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
4 ounces silken tofu
1 teaspoon chopped fresh  herbs
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil a little water to thin if necessary

Mix tuna, celery, walnuts, parsley, onion, salt and pepper. Blend dressing ingredients in blender adding oil a little at a time at end (to incorporate.) Blend well to make sure sunflower seeds are ground. Mix desired amount of dressing with tuna mixture. Serve on bed of chopped romaine lettuce with chopped radish.

Enchiladas with Greens

One Straw Farm is an organic “outreach” place with one fiesty “Lady Joan Norman” as half of the farmer team. Rumor has it that her Swiss Chard Burritos are incredible. Here is the base recipe for using your choice of greens. Also use corn or flour tortillas as you prefer.

1 bunch greens- chard, collards, kale or a mixture of the greens
2 tablespoons oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup grated Chapel Creamery (Easton) cheddar cheese
corn  or flour tortillas
salsa of choice

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Sauté the greens in oil and garlic. Make a cheese sauce with milk, cheese, flour and butter. Mix cheese sauce into greens. Place the mixture into a tortilla, roll and place onto a greased baking dish. Cover with salsa and bake @ 375 for 20 min.

Spring Greens & Herb Risotto

Serves 2

This makes a generous amount of pesto, so use half and freeze the rest for the next time you make risotto.

For the spinach & herb pesto
3/4 cup densely packed stemmed spinach leaves
1/4 cup mixed flat-leaf parsley, thyme and tarragon leaves
1/4 cup chicken stock, as needed

For the risotto
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock; more if needed
3 tablespoons butter
1 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup dry white wine
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Prepare the spinach and herb pesto -- Put the spinach and herbs in a food processor or a blender. Process, adding a little stock to loosen if needed, until well combined. The pesto should resemble a very thick soup. Set aside.

Make the risotto -- Bring the stock to a boil; reduce to a simmer. In a medium, heavy-gauge saucepan over medium-high heat, melt 2 Tbs. of the butter. Stir in the rice, toasting just until it starts to sizzle and pop, about 1 min. It should not color. Add the onion, stirring constantly, and cook until translucent, 1 to 2 min. Stir in the wine.

When almost all the liquid has disappeared, after about 1 min., add just enough hot stock to cover the rice. Lower the heat to maintain a vigorous simmer; stir occasionally. When the stock is almost gone, again add enough stock to cover the rice, along with a pinch of salt. Check the risotto every 3 or 4 min., giving an occasional stir to make sure it isn't sticking to the bottom of the pan, adding just enough stock to cover the rice when the liquid has almost disappeared.

Continue this way until the rice is just al dente, about 20 min. total cooking time. Bite into a grain; you should see a white pin-dot in the center. Take the risotto off the heat. Add the remaining 1 Tbs. butter. Stir in half of the herb pesto (freeze the rest for another time) and the cheese. Stir vigorously for a few seconds. The risotto should be moist and creamy, not runny. Add more stock to loosen the risotto if you like, and more salt to taste, if needed. Serve immediately.

Photos and Recipes~Rita Calvert 2007


Coffee for sale at Saturday's pick-up

Recently we met a coffee roaster in Baltimore who works directly with a couple of farmers in Ethiopia and Costa Rica.  They sell organic, fair-trade, shade-grown coffee, and we were impressed with the smooth flavor.  We thought you might appreciate being able to buy some good coffee beans when you pick up your produce, so we've ordered just a few bags for this weekend.  If you like the idea, we can continue offering coffee in the future.  Each 12-ounce bag is $10.00.  They will roast it on Thursday, and you'll get it on Saturday, so it's extremely fresh! 
    We're keeping a small margin to make it worth our trouble, but really we're selling this for your benefit, so do give us feedback to let us know if you like the taste, and appreciate the option to buy it here.  If you like these first few bags, we'll buy more to offer at all the pick-up sites in the future.  We would also be able to re-fill your bags with a full pound for the same price of $10. 
    The name of the roaster is Farm Direct Roaster, and you can find out more information about the coffee farms from their respective websites: www.kaffaforestestate.com and www.greenearthcoffee.net.
-Carrie


Bring a few cups to your first share

In the process of getting ready for your first week of shares, we noticed that we're short on little pots in which you can take home your seedlings.  But rather than waste the plastic and money to buy more, we thought some of you might be willing to bring your own.  Lots of small containers would fit the bill--a single-serving yogurt container would work, or you could cut the bottom off a small plastic bottle.  I bet there's something in your recycling bin right now that would do the trick.  And don't worry, if we don't have enough containers, we can send your plant home comfortably in some newspaper. 

Now, to inspire happy thoughts of your coming salads, here's some pictures that Deborah Starobin-Armstrong took from the high tunnel...Lettuce2_4

Lettuce_among_carrots

Thanks!

-Farmer Carrie