Sunday, July 27, 2008

Pickled Beets

After the pickup last weekend, I headed upstate. Once there, my friend Cathy, who works wonders with the produce from her garden, taught me the following recipe.

Pickled Beets
  • 8 beets, roast or boiled, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 1 red onion, thickly sliced
  • 1 cup cider vinegar or tarragon vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 1/2 t. salt
  • 1/2 c. sugar
Bring liquid to a simmer and pour over layers of beets and onions in a quart jar. Place caps on jars, let cool for one hour. Refrigerate and eat the next day, or refrigerate for up to a week.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Rainbow Garden

In case you missed Gina's posting on the Google Groups, I'm copying it here word for word. Happy stories are worth repeating!

On July 15, the members of the East 4th St. Community Garden (in Windsor Terrace) received the following e-mail from one of our fellow garden members:

Dear Garden Community,

I work as a garden/chef instructor for [a local advocacy organization]. A few weeks ago we started a new gardening program at [a NYC public school] for 4th and 5th graders. Unfortunately, this past weekend someone vandalized our garden and pulled up and destroyed almost all the vegetables and herbs the kids and I planted. The kids were heart broken that all their hard work was trashed. But they are determined to start again.

I'm writing to ask if anyone has any plants (vegetables or herbs especially) that you don't want/need and feel could be transportable that you'd like to donate. We have five more weeks left in the summer program, so seeds are not likely to be the way to go. Of course we spent all our grant money on building the plot and buying the original seeds and plants. You'll get a big thanks from me and make a lot of kids happy.


I immediately e-mailed Eve to see if the farm had anything to contribute. She got back to me right away, saying that Ellen should call her immediately. The very next day, when the farm dropped off their Wednesday distribution in Manhattan, they brought a huge donation of plants for the kids. Here is what Ellen wrote to Eve that night:

Dear Eve,

Thanks so much for the plants! Some of the kids saw us bringing the plants into the school and were very excited. I can't wait to see all of them tomorrow when they walk into the room and see all the beautiful things you gave us! The school director and the director from [the local advocacy organization] were very appreciative and moved. (Frankly, my boss cried.)

All the best to you and yours this season. Thanks again — we are so grateful!!


Today, Ellen wrote to me saying that the kids had gotten all the plants in the ground and taken photos. Here is her message:

Thank you again. We had a great planting session yesterday. I'm totally wiped out! But it was really fun and the kids were really happy. They made some nice cards for the Garden of Eve which I hope to get into the mail today.

Attached are a few pictures of the kids planting yesterday and making a new garden sign—they chose "Rainbow Garden" as its name, for the variety of vegetables they now have and to represent the variety among them. This is the sweetest bunch of kids, really.

Thanks, Ellen

I am so happy that the Garden of Eve and our CSA could play a role in this great story! Bravo, Eve and Chris! The smiles on the faces of those kids says it all!

--Gina, KWT-CSA core group member volunteer

Monday, July 21, 2008

Saturday lunch

Pickup on Saturday resulted in:*
  • 1 head green lettuce
  • 1 bunch onions
  • 1 quart mesclun greens
  • 1 head napa cabbage
  • 2 sprigs of basil
  • 3 ears of corn
  • a few summer squash
  • delicious blueberries!
  • some apricots
  • 6 eggs
Add bit of fresh tuna = lunch for two. Still working on using the napa cabbage...

*Disclaimer: pickup description may differ from actual pickup due to faulty memory.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Iron Chef Kohlrabi

From our friends at the Williamsburg CSA:

Come to our "2nd Annual Iron Chef Kohlrabi" on Sunday July 13 from 2pm to 5pm @ McGolrick Park in Williamsburg and showcase your best original recipe that features kohlrabi. McGolrick Park will be our "Kitchen Stadium". (Look for signs as you enter the park near the intersection of Nassau Ave & Russell St). Event will be rain or shine-we will move indoors across the street to our Wednesday distribution site if showers erupt.

We'll all sample each others' creations, and the dishes will be scored by our panel of judges. The winning cook receives an Iron Chef prize pack! (Entries should have a judges tasting plate with 5 sample "bites" or tasting servings & a general CSA tasting plate to share with the masses and a written copy of the recipe. Judging will begin @ 3pm.) Bring a picnic lunch (& blanket or chair to sit on) and a dessert to share. (Oh yeah, bring your own plates & utensils too!) We will be chilling & eating together in the park, challenging each other with our Kohlrabi creativeness. (You don't have to enter to come; Everyone is welcome to join in the festivities.)

Feel free to bring friends--we will be inviting other Garden of Eve CSA's in the City to join us. Animal friends welcome as well.

Last year the competition was stiff as raw and cooked Kohlrabi dishes were pitted against each other....Smack talk was already heard at the Kick-Off Cocktail party about secret kohlrabi recipes....

You can find more info on Let the Battle Begin! Allez Cuisine!!

Photograph courtesy of Lawrence Farmers' Market

Friday, July 4, 2008

Arugula Pesto

Last week I was one of the last members to make the pickup before the bells rang at noon. As a result, my options for picking the biggest and brightest produce were greatly diminished. I had read about hail storms damaging crops and creating tiny holes in the leaves of greens; some of the items seemed effected (anyone verify?). While the damage is only aesthetic, the produce did not appeal to me raw. The solution came to me in the form of a suggestion from Aya:

Arugula Pesto
  • 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts or walnuts
  • 4 cups fresh basil or parsley or arugula, loosely packed
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 garlic clove
  • coarse salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Spread pin nuts or walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet; toast in oven until golden and fragrant, 5 to 8 minutes. Let cool completely.
2. In food processor, combine nuts, basil, parsley, or arugula, Parmesan, and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Process until finely chopped. With the machine running, pour olive oil in a steady stream through feed tube; process until smooth. (I skipped the two parts and blended it all at once. Seemed to work as well.)

Much nicer. Best of all it's freezable which means you can save it for January.