Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Haiku Tuesday - Scallions!

Never in my life
Have I seen such Enormous
Fresh, Bulbous Scallions
Do you have a haiku about your produce for the week? Or a tribute to scallions? Post in the comments!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

CSA Week #4

In the box for this week:

Fennel - I'd never actually seen fennel not already chopped up before

Scallions - The biggest ones ever!

Carrots - I had forgotten how good fresh from the ground early season carrots are.

Swiss Chard - In a rainbow of different colors

Dill - It was this or cilantro and the box I ended up getting had dill which at first I confused with the fennel

Collard Greens - I have never eaten or cooked Collard Greens. I'm slightly frightened of them.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Chana Saag

Or how to use up your spinach and your kale before it goes bad.

Can it still be called Saag if it has kale in it too?

This was actually a pretty quick dish to put together, although it did involve using the food processor, which really means having to wash the food processor. The recipe makes approximately 4-6 servings and works well over rice.

2 tbs olive oil

2 tbs butter

2 medium onions, chopped

1 tbs garam masala

1 tbs tumeric

4 tsp minced garlic (probably 4-5 cloves fresh)

2 tsp ground coriander

2 tsp minced ginger root

approximately 1lb of green leafy combination of spinach and kale, lightly torn

1 15 oz can of chick peas

1/2 cup of water

1 cup of non fat yogurt

salt and pepper to taste

Saute the onions in the butter for appoximately five minutes. Add all spices and continue to cook for a few more minutes. Add the greens and cook until fully wilted. Put greens and onion mixture in the food processor along with oil, pulse until shredded well. (I think this took less than 10 seconds in mine which made having to wash it after that much worse, but it is the quickest way to get the right texture). Return to pan, add chick peas, water if necessary, and cook for about ten minutes. Stir in the yogurt just before serving.

Next week I hear I'm getting Collard Greens and more Swiss Chard. We'll see what I come up with for that.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Haiku Tuesday

I'm beginning a new regular installment - Haiku Tuesday

When I was in college we used to leave notes that often took the form of haiku regarding cleaning one's dishes and other chores. I miss writing domestically minded haikus, so I thought I'd start a regular haiku section. If you would like to submit a haiku dealing with cooking, crafts, or general domesticity please email!

How many syllables
Does Kohlrabi have, and please,
How do you cook it?

Monday, June 21, 2010

More Pie Failures

or Why You Should Never Bring Pie to a Picnic.
My birthday was last week and to celebrate I had a picnic with a bunch of friends in the Sheep's Meadow in Central Park this past weekend. It was a beautiful day for a picnic, plenty of people were out enjoying the gorgeous weather, but not too many to make it overcrowded. There were several children celebrating birthday's in the same area, including three legged races and water balloon fight. All in all an ideal picnic day and I asked everyone to bring something while I brought pie.

You'd think I would have learned my lesson from the last attempt to bring pie somewhere. Despite having a plastic pie saver so that I don't repeat the mess I had last year when taking a pie on the subway to a Newsies sing along on the Upper West Side where I ended up with pie juice dripping out of the pie dish all over me, my scarf, and the subway car, it's still inevitably a disaster whenever I try to take pie out of the safety of my apartment.
For the picnic I made two pies - Strawberry, Peaches and Cream pie and Three Berry Star Pie (Strawberry, Blackberry and Blueberry). I made both pies the night before thinking they'd have plenty of time to cool and be less liquidy the next morning. I tried making the crust dough in my food processor for the first time and as was my fear, when I wet to roll it out, the texture was off. I added eggs and milk and put the dough back in the fridge and was able to salvage the dough however so I thought things were looking up.
Three Berry Star Pie Before

Three Berry Star Pie After

This was the obvious problem of pie juice shifting during carrying. Not as big a mess as last time since the pie had cooled over night, but it still made for a tie dyed sort of pie look.

Sadly I don't have a before picture for the Peaches and Cream pie, but it was a lovely one crust pie with a brown sugar crumble topping. After pulling it out of the oven around midnight, I covered it with foil to protect it without thinking too much about it. It looked perfect. I was tired so I figured I would photograph it the next morning for the blog, but by morning the crumb topping had mostly melted into the rest of the pie. No matter, I thought, it would still taste good. Then when I unwrapped it at the picnic it had REALLY melted. I tasted it, but the texture was so funny that sadly this was one pie that just never got served.

On the plus side the salad I made with my CSA share partner for the picnic turned out fabulously including the roasted beets.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

CSA Week #3

In the box for this week is:

Toscano Kale (which a preliminary internet search leads to very few suggestions for, but I imagine works like most kinds of Kale)

Garlic Scapes (given over to my share partner for the cause of pesto)

Baby Spinach (according to them anyway it's baby spinach, more like adolescent spinach)

Baby Arugula

Red Boston lettuce (leading to the conclusion that the first week's Red Boston lettuce was really in fact Romaine because this clearly looked like a red version of Boston lettuce)


Kohlrabi (which looks sort of like an alien egg baby that I really have no idea what to do with.)

Semi-Failure Pie

I was invited to a friend's to watch this year's Tony Awards (my thoughts on which I'll spare you on this blog as they have nothing to do with food, crafts or general domesticity) and I of course decided it was an opportunity to make pie. However clearly I had not made pie in some time, and I yet again forgot to pick up more tapioca because I've been out of it for weeks, so while still tasty (since really any homemade pie is tasty to some degree or other), the end result was an extremely runny Strawberry Blackberry Pie.
Better luck next time. And there will most assuredly be a next time as berries are super cheap at my fruit and veggie market.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Escarole and Swiss Chard Quiche

Due to the overwhelming amount of greens in last week's CSA and egged on by the goat cheese and eggs in my fridge that were about to go bad, I opted to make quiche. I added onions and mushrooms as well as escarole and Swiss chard from the week's farm bounty and mixed it with some cream, Parmesan, goat cheese and of course eggs. I'd never actually cooked with either escarole or Swiss chard before as I've always been a bit afraid of all those big leafy greens.

I have now eaten quiche every day for at least one meal all week long.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

CSA Week #2

Or what do you do with this much escarole?

In the box this week:

A huge head of Escarole (the above picture is only half of the share)

A head of Romaine lettuce

a head of Boston lettuce

2 Baby Japanese Salad Turnips (sadly only two...I really liked these last week)

a big bunch of Swiss chard

baby bok choy

and garlic scapes

Garlic scapes seem to be the darling of the food blogging world and I've never tried them, so I'm somewhat excited, although they don't look like much amidst all the other produce.

I wonder what escarole pie would be like?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Return of the Pie!

More from the CSA bounty:

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

I used this pie making opportunity to use a new mini cookie cutter set I have in the shape of Noah's ark and the animals. I've never made a strawberry rhubarb pie before and I fudged the measurements for the filling based on a number of different recipes (primarily that old standby the Betty Crocker Cookbook). I used almost two full cups of sugar for the filling which is more than I normally put into a fruit pie filling and made the whole thing a bit sweeter than I personally like, but still very good. Sadly rhubarb is not the easiest thing to come by in my neighborhood and so I'll have to wait until the next time the CSA box has some to experiment with it again.

Friday, June 4, 2010

CSA Week #1

It's been a while since I've posted anything because I've been very busy with the end of the school semester and a lot of paper writing, but now that it is over I am ready for a summer of cooking, baking, sewing, beading and being generally crafty.

Yesterday was the first pick up of the season for the CSA I joined and here is the bounty:

There is red and green Boston lettuce (I never knew it came in multiple varieties!), French breakfast radishes, Baby Japanese salad turnips, arugala, spinach, rhubarb and strawberries.

I made a salad today using CSA produce and some leftovers in my fridge and discovered that Japanese salad turnips might just be my new favorite thing. It was a fantastic salad and with the heat and humidity that we've been having it was very filling and refreshing.

Stay tuned for my first strawberry-rhubarb pie!