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Pickled Shrimp and Celery

Sarah West

Shrimp season is on its way out - celebrate the last hauls of the year with this unique preparation. Not as acidic as most vinegar pickles, think of the brine as a marinade, infusing both ingredients with delicacy and aroma. Picked Dungenness crab would make a decadent substitute, though may fare better when tossed with the celery post-pickling (just before serving) to avoid a vinegar takeover of its buttery qualities.

Serve for the salad course or make it the main dish with a side of roasted sweet potatoes or delicata squash slices.


Serves 6 as a side dish

Ingredients

For the pickling brine
1/2 Cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 Cup mirin
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 Thick slices fresh ginger
5 Black peppercorns
5 Juniper berries
1 Cinnamon stick

2 Bunches celery, outer stalks removed until just the tender heart stalks and their blanched leaves remain
1 Cup white wine
8 Black peppercorns
2 Bay leaves
Salt
1 1/2 - 2 pounds shrimp
Really good extra-virgin olive oil
Pepper
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh chives


1. Put all of the pickling brine ingredients in a non-reactive pot along with one cup of water and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved. Pour the brine into a wide shallow dish. Can be make up to 1 week in advance. Keep refrigerated.

2. Keep the celery hearts whole and put them into a large pot with the wine, bay leaves, and a generous pinch of salt. Add just enough water to cover the celery. Cover and simmer over medium heat until the celery is crisp-tender when pierced with a knife, 25-30 minutes. Transfer the celery to a cutting board. Cut the hearts crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick pieces and add them to the pickling brine.

3. Using the same pot and liquid in which you cooked the celery, poach the shrimp until just cooked (if still in their shell, leave it on until after they are cooked to avoid them curling to tightly or flaring into a "butterfly"). Drain the shrimp in a colander, peel (if necessary), and put in a bowl. Pour the celery and pickling brine over the shrimp; make sure everything is submerged. If there isn't enough brine to cover everything completely, just give the celery and shrimp a turn now and then. Cover, refrigerate, and allow the shrimp and celery to "pickle" for about an hour.

4. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the shrimp and celery to plates. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and garnish with celery leaves and chopped chives. Serve cold.



Based on a recipe from Canal House Cooks Every Day, by Christopher Hirsheimer & Melissa Hamilton.

Wild Mushroom and Herb Polenta

Sarah West

A quintessential fall recipe, pairing earthy wild mushrooms with the zesty brightness of fresh herbs, most of which will hang on until the first frost. Built like a pizza, this dish is easy to assemble and brings a touch of effortless elegance to the weeknight table. Serve with a salad of baby lettuces and frisee tossed in a light vinaigrette. 

Serves 2

Ingredients

4 Tablespoons olive oil
4 Cups wild mushrooms (chanterelles, porcini, hedgehog, etc.), brushed clean, large ones halved or even quartered
2 Garlic cloves, crushed
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 Tablespoon truffle oil (optional - could also used truffle salt from Springwater Farm in place of regular salt)
Salt and black pepper
2 1/2 Cups stock (chicken or vegetable)
1/2 Cup polenta
3 oz Parmesan, grated
2 1/2 Tablespoons butter
1 Teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 Tablespoon chopped chervil (sub parsley if unavailable)
4 oz soft-ripened cheese (such as Fraga Farm camembert or Willamette Valley Cheese brie), cut into thin slices

1. Heat half of the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add half of the mushrooms and fry just until cooked, 5-10 minutes; try not to move them much so you get golden-brown patches on their surface. Remove from the pan and repeat with the rest of the mushrooms and oil. Off the heat, return all the mushrooms to the pan and add the garlic, tarragon, thyme, truffle oil, and some salt and pepper. Keep warm.

2. Bring the stock to boil in a saucepan. Slowly stir in the polenta, then reduce the heat to the minimum and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. The polenta is ready when it leaves the sides of the pan but is still runny. If you are using instant polenta, this shouldn't take more than 5 minutes; with traditional polenta it could take up to 50 minutes (if it seems to dry out, add some more stock or water, but just enough to keep it at a thick porridge consistency).

3.  Preheat the broiler. When the polenta is ready, stir in the Parmesan, butter, rosemary and half the chervil. Season with salt and pepper. Spread the polenta over a heatproof dish and top with the soft-ripened cheese slices. Place under the broiler until the cheese bubbles. Remove, top with the mushrooms and their juices, and return to the broiler for a minute to warm up. Serve hot, garnished with the remaining chervil.


Based on a recipe from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi.

Summer's End Gratin

Sarah West

While you could make this recipe at any point during tomato-eggplant season, something about it calls out to the end of summer, when the chill that lingers in the shadows (or jumps right out and owns a whole day) makes you hungry for something comforting and warm. Any kind of eggplant works; to add a little more complexity to the preparation and the resulting flavor, grill the eggplant slices instead of sautéing.

I once cooked 1/2 pound ground lamb with the chard portion of this dish and found it highly satisfying. I've also used queso fresco or feta in place of mozzarella, and mustard greens instead of chard. Keeping the basic architecture the same, the fun part is tailoring the dish to the ingredients you have on hand and the flavors you like best. I imagine, once summer draws to a permanent close, that sliced delicata squash would make a nice substitute for the eggplant and canned whole tomatoes for the fresh ones.


Serves 4

Ingredients
1 1/2 pounds eggplant
Sea salt
Neutral vegetable oil (such as canola or grapeseed)
2 Tablespoons Olive oil
1 small finely diced onion
10-12 cups coarsely chopped chard leaves (about 1 pound)
Freshly ground pepper
Several large basil leaves, torn
1 or 2 large tomatoes, sliced 1/4-inch thick
4 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
Handful of cherry tomatoes 
1 cup fresh bread crumbs

1. Slice the eggplants into rounds a scant 1/2-inch thick (you should have about 8-10 slices if using globe eggplant). Heat a ridged cast-iron pan over medium-high heat. While the pan is heating, brush both sides of each eggplant slice with neutral vegetable oil. When the pan is hot, add the slices and cook for 6 to 7 minutes, rotating them 45 degrees and cooking for another 5-7 minutes. Turn the slices over and cook on the second side the same way, though they may take less time. Alternately, brush the rounds with oil and bake in a 375-degree oven until soft and nicely colored, about 25 minutes.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a wide skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for three minutes. Add the chard and a few pinches of salt, cover, and cook until the chard is wilted and tender, 5 minutes or so. Turn the cooked chard into a colander set over a bowl and press with the back of a spoon to remove some of the liquid.

3. Heat the oven to 350-degrees. Lightly oil a round or oval gratin dish large enough to told 6-8 cups.

4. Cover the gratin dish with half the eggplant slices and season with salt and pepper. Scatter the basil, then layer half of the tomato slices on top, followed by half of the mozzarella. Season again with salt and pepper. Strew the chard over the cheese layer and season lightly with salt and pepper. Layer the remaining eggplant, followed by the remaining tomato, and cheese. Tuck any small whole tomatoes here and there among the vegetables.

5. Toss the bread crumbs with 1 tablespoon olive oil and strew them over the surface. Bake until bubbly and the bread crumbs are browned, about 35 minutes. Let settle 10 minutes or so before serving.

Based on a recipe from Deborah Madison's, Vegetable Literacy.

Farro with Tomato & Onion

Sarah West

This delightfully easy one-pot recipe is highly adaptable: use any tomato you like and any onion. Try shallots instead, extra garlic, a different herb. Add chevre or feta crumbles to serve, or Italian sausage, or grilled zucchini or fennel (or all of the above). It's charming enough to make you want to eat it again and again, so you'll have plenty of opportunities to find your favorite permutation.

The least flexible part of this recipe is the type of farro you use; it is designed for semi-pearled (30 minute cooking time) or pearled (15 or fewer minutes cooking time) farro, both of which can soften before the tomatoes are completely obliterated. If you use unpearled farro (1 hour+ cooking time), expect something akin to a red-sauce farro-risotto, delicious in its own right.

Serves 2 as a main dish

Ingredients

2 cups water (or chicken broth)
1 cup farro
1/2 large onion, cut in half (lengthwise) again and sliced thinly
2 garlic cloves, minced or thinly sliced
1 pint of red cherry or grape tomatoes, sliced in halves or quarters (if you use slicing tomatoes: remove skins, then cut into chunks, about 1 1/2 cups total)
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
5-10 basil leaves, cut into thin ribbons
Grated parmesan cheese for serving 

1. If using semi-pearled, place water and farro in a pan to pre-soak for 10 minutes. Put water, farro, onion, tomatoes, salt, pepper flakes, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil into a medium saucepan and bring, uncovered, to a boil. Reduce heat to low and let simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally to keep from sticking, until the farro is tender and the liquid reduced to a sauce. 

2. Plate and sprinkle with parmesan cheese, basil, and fresh pepper, or anything else you can dream up. 


Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Green Mac & Cheese

Sarah West

I was inspired to make this after one of our volunteers brought something similar to a market potluck last year. I love the way the greens cut through the heaviness of homemade mac & cheese, making it seem (almost) healthy. During their brief spring appearance, I like to use nettles because their rich, nutty flavor pairs perfectly with cheese. Any greens will do: spinach, mustards, sorrel, kale, green onion tops, or even broccoli florets all make nice substitutes.  (Want to come to market potlucks? Inquire about volunteer opportunities at the info booth).

Nettles, while uniquely delicious and more nutritious than all other greens combined, come with one catch--they sting! Once boiled or steamed, nettles are perfectly safe to touch, but take care when handling raw leaves. Read more about handling and cooking with nettles here.

Ingredients:

1/2 - 3/4 lb nettles, boiled and drained
1 lb penne pasta (or your favorite shape)
8 tablespoons butter, divided
2 tablespoons white flour
1/2 cup milk
2 cups half & half
1 pinch red pepper flakes to taste
1 pinch black pepper to taste
1 pinch ground nutmeg to taste
1 tablespoon dry sherry (optional)
8 oz Gruyere cheese, grated
8 oz fontina cheese, grated
16 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated, divided
1/2 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
smoked paprika


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13 inch glass baking dish with 1 tablespoon of butter and set aside. Blend nettles and half & half in a food processor and set aside.

2. Bring a medium saucepan of water to boil and add penne pasta. Boil 8-10 minutes. Pasta should be al dente. Remove from heat, run under cold water, drain and set aside.

3. Place a large heavy saucepan over medium heat, add 4 tablespoons of butter. When butter melts, whisk in flour, stirring as flour cooks a minute or two. Add milk, stirring constantly to avoid lumps. Then the sauce is smooth, add half & half, nettles mixture and continue to stir. Add red pepper, black pepper, nutmeg and sherry, stirring continuously. Add the three cheeses, reserving 1/2 C of sharp cheddar for later. Mix well until all of the cheese has melted and the sauce is consistently smooth. Remove from heat.

4. Add pasta to the pot of cheese sauce; stir until well mixed. Pour into prepared baking dish. Evenly sprinkle top of baking dish with reserved 1/2 C of sharp cheddar cheese. Cover with panko and dot with remaining butter. Sprinkle with smoked paprika.

5. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until bubbling and slightly brown on top. Let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

This recipe invites creativity: Reduce or increase the amount of greens to your own tastes. Substitute your favorite melty cheeses, or use just sharp cheddar. Skip the panko or use your own homemade bread crumbs. Change up the spices. Try stirring in lightly steamed, whole broccoli or cauliflower florets. Process raw leaves with the half & half instead of cooked for a brighter green (even nettles can be used raw, just be extra careful getting them into the blender).

Recipe adapted from the Hedgebrook Cookbook.

Pasta with Cantaloupe

Sarah West

adapted from Marcella’s Italian Kitchen by Marcella Hazen

serves 4-6

This lovely late summer pasta is ideal for the crux of the season when melons are ripe in the field, and evenings cool off enough that we can welcome a bit of cream in our pasta sauce. Choose a delicate (preferably hand-made) pasta, such as angel hair, thin spaghetti, tonnarelli, or fettuccine. Many varieties of local summer melons work well for this dish.

Ingredients
4 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
3 cups diced cantaloupe (rind & seeds removed, melon cut into ¼ inch cubes) 1 cup heavy cream
1 Tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
½ tsp. tomato paste
~ salt
~ freshly ground black pepper
8 oz. dried pasta or fresh pasta made with 3 eggs & 1 ¾ cup flour

Steps

  1. Put the butter & oil in a 10-12 inch skillet and turn the heat to high. When the pan is hot but not smoking, add the melon and sauté for about 2 minutes, stirring often. The melon should soften, but not disintegrate.
  2. Add the cream, lemon juice, & tomato paste. Stir & cook over high heat until the cream has reduced by half. Season with salt & pepper & remove from the heat.
  3. Cook the pasta, drain, & toss it with the sauce. Serve at once.

 

from Chef Kathryn Yeomans The Farmer's Feast

Kebabs

Sarah West

Ingredients
1 lb. meat (lamb, chicken or beef) cubed
1 lb. (approx) firm tomatoes, cut into 1 inch cubes
1 onion, cut into thick squares
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme or oregano, chopped
~ salt and pepper, to taste
~ paprika (optional), to taste

Steps

  1. Mix together oil, garlic and herbs. Set aside.
  2. If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 10 minutes. Heat grill. If using a charcoal grill, place grill about 4 inches from heat source.
  3. Thread vegetables and meat alternately on skewers. Leave a little space between pieces. Brush skewers with oil mixture and season with salt, pepper and optional paprika to taste. Set aside while grill heats up.
  4. Place kebabs on grill when the grill is hot. Brush them with a little more olive oil as they cook. Turn kebabs a few times and cook until they are brown on all sides and meat is tender, about 10 or 15 minutes.
  5. Remove skewers from grill and place on a platter. Cover with a foil tent, let the skewers rest for about 5 minutes then serve.

Note: Looking for a vegetarian/vegan option? Use cubes of tempeh instead of meat.

Salmon in Salsa Xnipec

Sarah West

Xnipec
In the Yucatan, there is a salsa made with radishes, cilantro, chiles, tomato and bitter orange juice. The Mayan word is xnipec (pronounced shin-ih-pek), which means "hotter than a dog's nose", and describes a salsa that is so picante that it is likely to make a dog's wet nose hot. Bright, crisp, fresh flavors pair beautifully with rich seafood - salmon, scallops and the like.

Of course you can make the salsa as spicy as you wish. Fresh squeezed orange juice and a little lime zest and juice make for an acceptable substitute for the bitter orange juice (from Seville oranges, available in the winter – squeeze & freeze in ice cube trays for use when not in season).

I sauté the salmon, crisping the skin and searing the flesh golden brown. At the last minute, the salsa is added to the pan, sizzling and bubbling, bright and vibrant. I pair Salmon in Salsa Xnipec with deep green
radish tops that I sauté separately with a little olive oil, salt and pepper. Total utilization of the radish and spring sun-filled goodness flourishing on my plate.

Ingredients
2 portions of salmon (about 6 ounces each) juice of 3 oranges
the zest of 1 lime, plus 2 Tbsp. lime juice
2 serrano chiles, chopped (less if desired)
5 radishes, trimmed and sliced into thin matchsticks
3 green onions, thinly sliced
1⁄4 bunch cilantro, rough chopped
1 medium fresh tomato, diced, or 10 cherry tomatoes, halved 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil plus more for sautéing the fish sea salt to taste

Steps

  1. Combine the citrus juice and zest, serrano chiles, radishes, green onion, cilantro and tomato. Stir in 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Season with salt and set aside to allow flavors to meld, about a half an hour, and up to 3 hours.
  2. Season the salmon on both sides with salt. Over a medium flame, heat the skillet with enough oil to form a generous film on the bottom of the pan. Once the oil is hot enough to sizzle when the fish is added (the oil should be shimmering but not smoking), slip the filets into the pan and sear on each side, cooking to desired doneness.
  3. When the fish are sautéed to your liking, drain off any excess oil that remains in the pan and all at once, add the salsa to the pan. It should immediately bubble up and boil. Turn the pan off and remove the fish to a serving dish, pouring the salsa over the top. Eat at once, served with sautéed radish greens.

 serves 2

Sautéed Radish Greens


Ingredients
greens from 1 bunch of radishes, washed & drained 1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste


Steps
Heat the oil in a skillet. When the oil is hot, shimmering but not smoking, add the radish greens, tossing and cooking for a minute at most, until they wilt and are tender. Season with salt and pepper.

serves 2 

Note: Any tender spring green (pea shoots, fava bean tops, spinach, etc.) will work well with this dish, or combine various greens for added interest.

From the Recipe Collection of Chef Kathryn Yeomans
The Farmer’s Feast
http://thefarmersfeast.me/

 

Sarson Ka Saag

Sarah West

Ingredients
1 lb mustard greens and other field greens, coarsely chopped
½ cup water
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
1 fresh green chili pepper (ex. Serrano), minced
¼ cup cornmeal
½ teaspoon cumin seed, toasted 2 minutes in a hot dry skillet
~ salt
~ butter
~ fresh lemon or lime juice

Steps

  1. In a large saucepan, gently simmer the greens in water with the ginger and pepper.
  2. When the greens are tender, slowly add the cornmeal and mash the mixture with a wooden spoon. Cook until thickened, 7-10 minutes.
  3. Top with butter to taste, lemon or lime juice to taste, and cumin seed to taste.

recipe from Ayers Creek Farm