Cooking With This Week's Box
Red & Yellow Onions: Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash & Tat Soi (see below)
Italian Garlic: Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash & Tat Soi (see below); Chili Lime Sweet Potato Gratin with Goat Cheese
Covington Sweet Potatoes: Chili Lime Sweet Potato Gratin with Goat Cheese; Deborah Madison’s Sweet Potato Flan
Butterscotch Butternut Squash: Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash & Tat Soi (see below); Grandma Yoder's Squash Pie; Roasted Butternut Squash and Shallot Soup
Tat Soi: Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash & Tat Soi (see below)
Collards: Collard Greens with Lime & Peanuts
Beauty Heart Radish: Winter Radishes with Sour Cream Dressing & Poppy Seeds
Shallots: Crispy Fried Shallots; Herb-Roasted Turkey with Shallot Pan Gravy; Roasted Butternut Squash and Shallot Soup; Shallot Marmalade; Wild Rice & Celeriac Gratin
It doesn’t seem possible that we’re down to our last three CSA boxes. Weren’t we just harvesting ramps not too long ago? Thanksgiving will be here next week and Christmas will follow close behind. Whether you’re looking for recipes to make for the holidays or just looking to find some tasty, seasonal recipes to try for weekly meals, this is a great time of the year to collect recipes from blogs, cooking magazines, etc. One of my favorite sites to peruse this time of year is Food52.com. I’ve already made a list of new recipes to try from their Food52 Thanksgiving Menu Maker. Check it out and you’ll find a lot of really good ideas for fall and winter vegetables.
Ok, time to get cooking with this week’s box and first on the list is our featured vegetable, the beautiful tat soi! If you aren’t familiar with tat soi, please take a moment to read this week’s vegetable feature article. Tat soi is a tasty and versatile green. This week I used it to make the featured recipe below, Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash & Tat Soi (see below). This turned out to be a pretty simple dish to make and very beautiful with contrasting colors of dark green, orange and purple from the red onions. Unlike many pasta dishes that contain dairy, this dish is not only vegetarian but also vegan. The chopped nuts with lemon zest that are used as a garnish is a perfect finishing touch to complete the dish. This can stand alone as dinner itself or is tasty side dish with a seared pork chop, grilled salmon or roasted chicken.
The other green in this week’s box is collards. Farmer Richard always tells us to “eat your greens every day,” so we’re doing our best to extend greens season as long as we can! This week I want to use them to make this recipe for Collard Greens with Lime & Peanuts. This is a simple, tasty recipe we featured in a previous newsletter. I like it served over rice and will sometimes add a little fish or chicken as well.
It’ll be awhile before we see those pretty little fresh red radishes again, so we turn our attention to storage radishes to get us through the winter. This week’s box contains beauty heart radishes which are more mild and sweet than other winter radishes. If you aren’t familiar with this radish and aren’t sure what to do with them, you might want to refer to this article in a previous newsletter from several years ago which includes a list of things you can do with a beauty heart radish. This radish has become a staple ingredient at Richard’s family’s Thanksgiving celebrations. We eat them as snack food when we travel during the winter---radish slices with cheese. It has to have more antioxidants than a wheat cracker!! You could also use this radish to make this simple, attractive salad for Winter Radishes with Sour Cream Dressing & Poppy Seeds. This is a tasty salad to enjoy throughout the winter when you’re looking for something fresh and crunchy.
|Celeriac and Apple Romoulade|
Photo from Romulo Yanes, MarthaStewart.com
What are you going to do with those rosy pink shallots? We packed these in this week’s box so you’d have something a little extra special to use for your Thanksgiving creations. There are a lot of fun things you can do with shallots. You could give them center-stage and make Herb-Roasted Turkey with Shallot Pan GravyCrispy Fried Shallots. Shallot Marmalade is another option that could add some class to a leftover turkey sandwich or serve it as an appetizer with bread and cheese throughout the holiday season. Lastly, this Roasted Butternut Squash and Shallot Soupmore reserved and simple option that is simply delicious.
Lets move on and tackle the orange vegetables in this week’s box starting with the carrots which are large, crispy, sweet and delicious! If you’re into spiralizing, these might be a good carrot to sprialize into a salad. This week I want to use these big carrots to make Carrot Fries. These will go great with grilled cheese or a cheeseburger. I also want to make these Apple and Carrot “Superhero” Muffins featuring oatmeal and almond meal. The blog this recipe comes from also includes options for using whole wheat flour in place of the almond meal. Serve these for breakfast or brunch.
|Sweet Potato Flan, photo from food52|
I’ve already suggested a few uses for the last orange vegetable in the box, butternut squash. If you aren’t feeling like Roasted Butternut Squash and Shallot Soupor Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash & Tat Soi (see below), may I make my annual suggestion to try my Grandma Yoder’s Squash Pie. I think about Grandma a lot this time of year and am thankful she shared this and many other family recipes with me that our family continues to enjoy.
We have reached the bottom of the box, so all that’s left is to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving! We’ve been very blessed this year to have the opportunity to be your farmers and I’ve enjoyed sharing recipes and cooking ideas with you each week. I hope you’ve found nourishment for your bodies as well as your souls throughout the season. Please meet me back here again in two weeks as we roll into the home stretch of the 2018 CSA Season with our final two deliveries. Happy Thanksgiving—Chef Andrea
Featured Vegetable: Tat Soi
Tat soi is one of my favorite fall vegetables. This is a gorgeous vegetable, but it’s also delicious and packed with nutrients. You’ll recognize the tat soi in your box this week as the large, dark green flower-like vegetable with long slender light green stems and rounded spoon-like leaves. Tat soi is a relative of bok choi and has a mild mustard flavor that has been sweetened by a few frosty nights. Both the leaves and the stems are tender and may be eaten raw or cooked.
Tat soi is one of the last greens we plant during the season with the intention to harvest it from the field as late as possible—early to mid-November. As the temperatures start to decrease, the plant lays itself flat to hug the ground for warmth. The result is a very open, flat rosette that has a deep, dark green color that intensifies with cold weather. Tat soi is very resilient to cold temperatures and can recover after being frozen. We did put hoops and a field cover over them to offer them some protection from the really cold nights. If you see some outer leaves on your tat soi that have a white to grayish hue, you’re looking at a little frost damage. You might also see some stems that have kind of a wrinkled, loose appearance. This happens sometimes when the stem freezes and then thaws. These stems and leaves are still good to eat and those frosty, cold nights are what make this green taste so mild and sweet! We hope you’ll be forgiving of a few frosted leaves as you appreciate the beauty and taste of this late season vegetable.
|Bok Choi Salad with Sesame Almond Crunch|
Try this salad with the Tat Soi in place of Bok Choi!
If you’re looking for recipes that use tat soi, you’re search will likely turn up pretty slim. Expand your search to include recipes that feature bok choi, spinach or even chard and you can use the tat soi in place of these greens. Tat soi leaves and stems are tender enough to be chopped and eaten raw as a salad. You can make a beautiful winter salad with tat soi, shredded carrot, slices of beauty heart radish and a light sesame-soy vinaigrette or even just a simple lemon vinaigrette. I like to make a simple salad like this and turn it into an entrée by adding seared flank steak or grilled salmon and some chopped toasted almonds or sesame seeds. Tat soi is also tasty used in stir-fries or wilted into brothy soups such as miso soup or hot and sour soup. In a previous newsletter we featured recipes for Tat Soi & Chicken Stir Fry and Pan-Seared Sesame & Garlic Marinated Tofu with Wilted Tat Soi. While I have a tendency to gravitate towards Asian ingredients and flavors when cooking tat soi, it also goes well with other flavors such as fennel, chiles and lemon as in the recipe for Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash and Tat Soi (see below) featured in this week’s newsletter. We have two recipes in our archives that have been very popular amongst our members and were written to feature bok choi. You can use this week’s tat soi in place of bok choi in this recipe for Spicy Ginger Pork Noodles with Bok Choi or this recipe for Bok Choi Salad with Sesame Almond Crunch.
To prepare tat soi for use, turn it over with the bottom facing up and carefully trim each stem from the base. Wash the stems and leaves vigorously in a sink of clean, cold water. Remember, tat soi lives very close to the ground so there is often dirt on the stems at the base of the plant. Once the leaves and stems are clean, spin them dry in a salad spinner or loosely wrap them in a large kitchen towel and shake them to remove excess water. If you are cooking the greens, it is a good idea to trim the stems from the leaves and put them in the pan first to give them a 1-2 minute head start before you add the leafy portion. To store your tat soi, place it in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator.
Spaghetti with Roasted Butternut Squash & Tat Soi
Yield: 3-4 servings
2 ½ to 3 cups butternut squash, medium diced
2-3 Tbsp olive oil
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium red onion, sliced thinly
¾ cup red wine
1 tsp fennel seeds
¼ - ½ tsp red pepper flakes
4 cups thinly sliced tat soi leaves & stems
8 oz dried spaghetti
Salt & Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Juice and zest of one lemon
½ cup toasted walnuts or almonds, finely chopped
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Put diced butternut squash in a mixing bowl and drizzle with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil. You want just enough to lightly coat all pieces. Season with salt and pepper and spread the squash in a single layer on a baking pan. Roast for 40-50 minutes or until the squash is tender and golden. Remove from the oven and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the finely chopped nuts along with ½ tsp salt and the zest of one lemon. The lemon zest is best done on a microplane so it is very fine. Alternatively, chop the zest finely with a knife. Set the nut mixture aside to use as a garnish when serving this dish.
- Next, put on a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil. Cook spaghetti until al dente. Before draining the spaghetti, remove one cup of the pasta water and set it aside. Drain pasta and set aside.
- While the squash is roasting and the spaghetti is cooking, heat 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil in a medium to large sauté pan over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and sauté lightly until they are softened and starting to caramelize. If they start to brown, reduce the heat. This will take about 15-20 minutes.
- Once the onions are caramelized, add the red wine, fennel seeds and red pepper flakes. Simmer until the wine is reduced by half.
- Add the roasted butternut squash and tat soi to the pan. Place the cooked spaghetti on top and stir to combine all of the ingredients. Add some of the pasta water and continue to cook over medium heat until the tat soi is wilted and tender.
- Season with salt and pepper and add 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice. Add a little more pasta water if necessary and simmer for another 4-5 minutes. Taste and further adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper, and/or more lemon juice.
- Serve the pasta warm and topped with the mixture of toasted walnuts/almonds and lemon zest.
Recipe by Chef Andrea Yoder