June 23 - What's in the Box
Dandelion, Beets, Swiss Chard, Kale, Artisan Lettuce, Potatoes, Carrots, Onions, Scallion, FRESH GARLIC, HERBS. Local Hudson Valley Farms (IPM/Not organic) CHERRIES and Greenhouse Tomatoes
Greeting from the Hudson Valley… Today our cousin Mark picked cherries so we are putting a tasting in. A lot of the cherries in the Hudson Valley did not make it due to a late frost during blossom. But we are nestled close to the river and it we have a few. If you have questions about what is in your box you can contact us via our website. If you find that any of your greens have wilted, don’t worry, they can be revived by after washing them in cold water, put them in the fridge.
Note about cooking greens: Blanching Greens takes some of the bitterness out, softens them up, and helps retain color and vitamins and it is a must if you are freezing your greens. Blanch greens in a large pot of boiling salted water. Time varies from 15 seconds (Swiss Chard/Spinach) to 2 minutes (kale/collards) then drain and cool with cold water (I normally do not blanch spinach or swiss chard because I just put them on heat just enough to wilt them). Also, stems of your greens can be prepared in lots of ways, but for Kale and Collards they should be blanched and cooked well. Swiss Chard stems are easily edible and don’t need much but Kale and Collards are fibrous but when cooked well and seasoned can be delicious.
Dandelion add a punchy bitterness to salads when raw. If you add them to your salad, chop them fine. Raw dandelion greens are also packed with iron and are a good source of prebiotics. As mentioned, try blanching if you want to take some of the bitterness out of them. They season nicely with EVO, onion, garlic, dash lemon – add parmesan/white beans.
Swiss Chard: Swiss chard leaves are tender and have a taste similar to beet greens and spinach. The leaves can be slightly bitter and are less vegetal in flavor than kale. The crunchy stems are slightly sweet and have a similar taste and texture as bok choy stems. The mild flavor allows for cooking with your favorite seasoning and can be included in many recipes (soups, lasagna, etc.). This is a tender green so don’t overcook!
KALE: This is a beloved veggie packed with nutrition. But we recognize that there are people who may not fall into the kale-lover category. My recommendation is after washing to take the leaves off the stem and cut into small slices/pieces/almost shred and toss with seasoned olive oil and store in fridge. It will be there when you are ready to prepare either for raw salad, sautéing, soup, kale chips, etc. Kale likes garlic but can be seasoned with lots of other herbs. Also, the stems of the kale can be eaten. When you de-rib the leaves, slice the stalks and add them to a skillet with chopped garlic (scapes), onion (scallion). Cook until they turn soft and translucent. Chop up the leaves, add them to the pan, and continue to cook until the leaves are tender.
Artisan Lettuce: We grow 28 varieties of lettuce and they have been selected over many years looking for both tasty and colorful varieties. Lots of other ingredients to brighten your salad. I find simple dressing seasoned EVO, Lemon and Herb of choice is best.
BUNCHED BEET: A favorite summer dish in our family is lightly sautéed beet greens (touch of vinegar) with cottage cheese and cubed beet roots. You can sub with burrata cheese and thinly slice the cooked beets around the bottom of the plate add the sautéed beets greens and burrata on top. Beet greens will add nice flavor to your salad. Prep and cook time for beet greens is similar to chard – so your seasoning will be the trick.
HUDSON VALLEY GROWN (IPM / not organic) : We are excited to share with you from our farming friends a taste of the first of the season Hudson Valley CHERRIES. They have a more complex flavor than California cherries, with both sweet and tart and always delicious. We are providing tomatoes from Chris’s Greenhouse, a young farmer who Amy works with, until our tomatoes come in!
Seasonings: In addition to Parsley, Fresh-pulled Garlic is not cured and is moister than the usual “cured” garlic, and it can be crushed, baked, diced, etc. just like normal garlic. This is a special treat so please take the time to enjoy the difference a fresh Hudson Valley Grown garlic makes. SCALLION is a staple seasoning in my house – I keep my kitchen scissors near as I add scallions to many dishes. It can be used in a base seasoning prep with onions, garlic, thyme, sweet or hot pepper, tomato. Mint not sure whether you will get Peppermint or Spearmint, both can be used to make hot or cold tea.and can be used to brighten your salad or of course in a refreshing mojito cocktail. You may be getting SAGE and/or Oregano. We are also including Lemon Balm / Verbena, because we love this herb. The problem is that it is cold sensitive like basil. So today we are trying to wrap it to see if it can get to you without chill damage. We use this herb for tea (hot and cold) and also in any recipe calling for lemon. It will be refreshing in your salad and pairs with nicely fish and chicken. Having fresh herbs will turn most veggie dish into a tasty treat. Of course, pairing and understanding how much to use is a life-long culinary exploration. What you don’t use, you can always freeze.
Sometimes we will have to make last minute substitutions so the list may not be 100% correct – but close. We look forward to growing for you and thank you for supporting local Hudson Valley farms!