Thursday, November 18, 2010

week #25

Red Springs Family Farm
November 18, 2010 week 25

Lettuce Broccoli Garlic Yokatta Na
Mustard Greens Misato Radishes Paydons Acorn
Herb bag: Arugula Mizuna Parsley Dill Chives

A pleasant rain, though we’ve missed the sun! Levon is one month old and smiling so nicely lately. Lulah is basking in her new five-year-old-ness. The broccoli just keeps looking more beautiful. What a sweet Autumn.

Those of you interested in a basket next week – we’ll come into town on Wednesday. We’ll bring more broccoli, sweet red turnips (and their greens), some more diverse cooking greens, and sweet potatoes. Let us know.

This week – mustards! They smell strong – and they are one of the more potent greens we grow. We’ve heard stories of old timers around here who like to eat them raw with some hot bacon drippings on top. Whew! Here at home we prefer to cook them lightly – softening the taste. They love to be eaten with garlicky olive oil or butter, and some vinegar.

The shiny dark greens are Yokatta Na. We’re appreciating this versatile vegetable this year. You can treat it like spinach, arugula, or bok choy, and it will be delicious. Thin slices add a nice color, texture, and flavor to a salad. Braise it quick and hot for an omelet or stir-fry. Asian flavors work well, but it’s also soft enough to be an agreeable quiche green (substitute for spinach). I suspect that Yokatta Na might even work in place of broccoli in this delicious dish:

Broccoli and Tofu with Peanut Sauce
1/4 cup unsalted cashews 3 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
1 large onion, chopped (about 1 cup) 1 red or yellow bell pepper, chopped
1–2 cloves garlic, minced (1/2–1 teaspoon) 1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1 pound herbed firm tofu, well drained, cubed 3 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce, divided,
1/2 cup peanut butter (preferably chunky) 1/2 cup vegetable or chicken stock or water
2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
4 cups chopped broccoli, including peeled stalks

1. Toast the cashews in a dry, heavy skillet (preferably cast iron) over high heat until they start to brown in spots and become fragrant. (Be careful not to overtoast them.) Let cool and then roughly chop.
2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the peanut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, garlic to taste, and pepper flakes; sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a bowl.
3. In the same pan, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon peanut oil over medium-high heat. Add the tofu and 1 tablespoon of the tamari; sauté until the tofu starts to brown in spots, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the tofu to the bowl with the onion and bell pepper mixture.
4. In the same pan, mix the peanut butter, stock, rice vinegar, and remaining 2 tablespoons tamari. Heat over medium heat, stirring, until the mixture reaches a gravy-like texture and comes to a boil. Immediately turn off the heat and stir in the tofu mixture and sesame oil. Season to taste with more tamari.
5. Place the broccoli in a steamer basket set over 11/2 inches boiling water and cover. Steam for 5 minutes. Transfer the broccoli to the pan with the peanut butter mixture and mix well. If necessary, heat through before serving. Garnish with toasted cashews.

Have a beautiful weekend…
The Entwistles

If the only prayer you said in your whole life was,” thank you” that would suffice. ~Meister Eckhart

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