The selection this week is a result of of the cool spring we were having a few weeks ago. Last week when I mentioned the cool spring setting us back, we had a few nice alliums to round out the share. This week we do not have those items, so greens it is. I know for a fact that some of you will love having the stellar selection of greens this week, but for those of you who need some guidance on how to use them all this week, please scroll down for more details.
The good news is that everything looks great at the farm. Sam and I are setting drip irrigation up all over our plots and watering everything in. (We went from deluge to dry in no time!) We are 90% caught up on all the plantings, only the second succession of crops need to be planted. We have had some nasty bug and critter issues, more than usual this year, but reacted fast and are seeing good results. I will post pictures later in the week of the pretty cucumber and summer squash plants–saved in a pinch from the cucumber beetle!
But for now, here is the produce list for the week:
2 heads lettuce
1 bunch arugula
1 bunch raab
1 bunch chard
mixed spring braising greens
If you wrap your greens well, they should last several days in the fridge, with the exception of the arugula and perhaps the lettuce. Shake excess water off the leaves before doing so to prevent spoilage. You can use plastic, or a reusable bag made for this purpose. All greens are cooled in a cold water bath at the farm to lengthen the shelf life, but they are not washed. Before eating, they should all be rinsed thoroughly and spun dry.
Lettuce and Arugula: Make a salad
To use up the lettuce and arugula this week, I would make a salad (or two). Mix the arugula with the lettuce, and make a nice, slightly sweet dressing. Add chives and some crusty bread and its lunch! Use the arugula towards the beginning of the week–it notoriously does not keep. If your arugula gets a bit wilty in the fridge, fret not! Simply saute it.
1-2 TBS maple syrup
1/4 cup good olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
Place all ingredients in a jar with plenty of salt and pepper, put lid and jar, shake it up and dress salad.
This one is a member favorite. I have gotten so many responses from folks ranging from, “Its my kid’s favorite,” to “It’s my new favorite,” to, “Yay raab!” Here are the meals ideas members tell me about:
-Spring Raab with garlic, sausage and pasta
-Spring Raab with garlic, olive oil and pasta
-Spring Raab with tomato sauce and pasta
So, I guess the moral is, eat raab with pasta!
Chard is in the same family as spinach, and that is exactly how I use it. This time of year, the stems are much less prominent, but as the season progresses and the plants grow, the stems can become massive. They are completely edible and delicious. I chop them up and start sauteing them before I put the greens in the soften them. The French use the stem as a separate vegetable, braising it or grilling it are two good ways to use it up. My favorite chard recipe is a chard and onion filled filo tart. As I mentioned last week, chard is also a great burrito filling. It goes great with chili and cumin.
These greens are a mix of kale, Asian greens and mustard. They are sweet and tender this time of year. The stems are small enough to eat, so prepping them is quite simple. A good, quick idea for greens as a side dish is to cook them with plenty of garlic and them serve them with whatever main dish you are serving along with crusty bread or even polenta triangles. You can also serve cooked garlicky greens on top of olive oil slathered toast, like a bruschetta.