This was my first week with a farm share. The Clemson Student Organic Farm sold shares and so I bought a small family share. It’s not exactly a Costco deal, but it supports a terrific cause and I don’t mind splurging a bit on such a cool thing. Still, what a good thing it is that I didn’t buy a full share, because my first week, I got:
- 12 leaves curly kale
- 1 head red kale
- 1 head romaine lettuce
- 1 head tatsoi
- Turnip greens
So, with all that, I had a week of dishes to make.
Saturday morning: kale chips. Everyone kept telling me these were simple and they really are. My first attempt, I just baked them too long and they were smoky tasting. That’s because they were more or less burnt. This time, I just washed the kale, spun in my salad spinner to dry, torn into pieces and baked at 375 for about 10 minutes after spraying with olive oil and dusting with salt. Not bad! I found if you try to eat them the next day (or so), you’re best off putting them in the toaster oven for a couple of minutes to crisp back up.
Saturday: Salmon with Tatsoi and Red Onions. What the heck is tatsoi? That is certainly what I asked myself when I picked this up. So, looking around, it’s a green similar to bok choy. My original intent had been to make a stir fry, but as I looked around, I changed my mind. Fresh caught salmon bought at my local Ingles, a red onion and I was set. We did not make the salmon according to the recipe. Instead, my husband put Asian fire run on it and grilled it. The rest of the meal was made according to the recipe (well OK we used white balsamic vinegar instead of champagne) and it was delicious. Man, some seriously sweet onions!
Sunday: we had a pizza covered with arugula one time at Summa Joe’s, a restaurant in Anderson that tries to use local ingredients if possible. So, pizza it was. This meal is always fun because it allows everyone to customize their pizzas. The dough is this:
- 1 c warm water
- 1 T yeast (or package)
- 1 T sugar
- A fair amount of salt
- 1T oil
- up to 3 c flour
Add the yeast, sugar and salt to the warm water (to me it’s hot. that wrist test? I have cold hands.) Wait 5 minutes. If it’s good and bubbly and smells like bread, you’re gold. Mix in the flour half a cup at a time until good and stiff, and turn out on a board and knead for a few minutes, working in more flour. Place in an oiled bowl (or if you’re lazy like me, you just put it back in the bowl you were using), cover and go away for an hour. Punch the dough down, divide into 6 balls and let it sit for about 10 minutes. Then, you stretch these into 6 crusts of your liking. I put them on cookie sheets with a little corn meal underneath them.
For the sauce, you can use canned sauce, but I like this little sauce from Mollie Katzen. Combine 2 ounces dried tomatoes with 1 c boiling water and let sit for an hour. Let’s say you do it at the same time as the crusts. You then take a lot of parsley and basil, like half a cup packed of each, and puree in a food processor. If you are like me, you only had parsley, so you added some dried. A less than ideal substitute, but you do what you gotta do. You add 2-3 cloves of garlic, maybe some salt, and the tomatoes and the water and you puree that. Bingo, sauce. Super rich tasting without any added oil.
Then you customize your pizzas. Mine had tomato slices, olives, onion and a little feta cheese. When it came out of the oven, I topped it with arugula. My husband had bacon and sausage, onion, olives, tomato slices and mozzarella and parmesan cheeses. He skipped the arugula. Variety is the best thing, right?
Monday: I had bought some tempeh to have with our turnip greens, but my husband suggested we have black eyed peas. I was going to avoid that because the last time I made these, he said he didn’t want to eat them that often. So, that was fine with me and when I got home that night, I got ready to make the peas in the magic pressure cooker. Wait a sec, where are the black eyed peas? We’re out? Oh crap! I’m forced to punt now. So, I made black beans instead. Normally, I soak these puppies before pressure cooking, but fortunately, you can also not soak them. It just takes 12 minutes instead of 3, so I was OK. I put my usual onion, lime and garlic mix on it. For the husband, I threw his pork riblets in the oven as he asked. (They go to a martial arts class on Monday night, so dinner’s on the table when they get home, because it gets out late.) And the greens. Again, I washed them and spun them in my salad spinner. Then, these were sauteed in my wok in a tablespoon of oil with this vinaigrette: 2 T balsamic, 2 t honey, 1 T mustard. These were delicious! Unfortunately, it proved to be a very acidic meal for the other two, so if I had to do it again, I’d merely flavor the beans with a little salt and cumin, no lime juice. Otherwise, a great meal.
Tuesday: I was going to make a bulgar salad for the radishes, of which I gave half of them to my father, who loves radishes in his salad. Alas, to make room in the fridge, the bag with the kale and the radishes sat on the counter for a large part of the evening. When I woke up, the kale had survived just fine. The radishes? Not so much. So, they were tossed. So, a search online found a kale pasta dish that would do the trick, from Cooking Light. The directions involved making a dish that took forever. If I had to do it again, I would 1. Just roast the dang parsnips and onions OR if I wanted to avoid heating up the kitchen, I’d cook them at the same time. 2. Slice the parsnips thinner so they really would take 12 minutes instead of 20+ and 3. Use more olive oil for the sauce. I did have enough sense to avoid attempting to make the sauce with hot water and cheese, as was suggested, but the husband felt the dish needed something to tie it all together and he was right.
Wednesday: leftovers, kind of. Not enough pasta to split for dinner, so the husband had a chicken breast and I added a sweet potato to the pasta dish for me and the kid. Oh, and I did add that olive oil and that made the dish MUCH better.
Thursday and Friday, I was out of town, so that was the week! The romaine was used in salads and when the end of the week arrived, I gave it to coworkers. Next week, more kale and arugula, along with broccoli and radishes.