Backyard Gardens CSA: Week 14 — September 5, 2013

Hi all,

It’s week 14 of the CSA already!  The summer seems to be flying by…yet we’re still expecting some amazing produce in the next two months.  Our fall crops are on the way — and with this rainy weather of late, a nice bowl of squash soup next to a wood stove sounds just about perfect.  (You can tell I’m still soggy from this morning’s harvest, right?)

We’re welcoming a new employee, Robin, to the farm this week.  She spent all summer on rivers in Idaho, and is joining us to be crew leader next season.  Make sure to stop by and say hello!  She’s at market tonight until 6, if you read this in time…

And speaking of — the Thursday Farmers’ Market is still going, running with shortened hours from 4 to 6 p.m.  The Courthouse Concert Series is over for the season, but we’ll have Heidi Muller and Bob Webb join us on the Gazebo stage for our last Thursday market on September 19.  Many thanks to the Wallowa Valley Music Alliance for organizing that series again this year!  It adds a wonderful liveliness to the market.

WHAT’S IN YOUR BIN?

FullShare_9-5Full Share

1 bunch Basil
1# Cucumbers
2 Globe Eggplants
1 head Garlic
1 Walla Walla Sweet Onion
3 assorted Hot Peppers
3 assorted Sweet Peppers
1/2# Salad Lettuce
2 Large Summer Squash
1# Tomatoes (finally!)

HalfShare_9-5Half Share

1 bunch Basil
1# Cucumbers
2 Japanese Eggplants
1 head Garlic
1 Walla Walla Sweet Onion
3 assorted Hot Peppers
2 assorted Sweet Peppers
1/4# Salad Lettuce
1 Large Summer Squash
1/2# Tomatoes (finally!)

 

RECIPES

Ratatouille Tart

Recipe courtesy Smitten Kitchen

14 ounces frozen puff pastry, defrosted in the fridge overnight
1 Asian eggplant (can use globe eggplant cut into halves or quarters)
1 smallish zucchini
1 smallish yellow squash (can substitute one large summer squash for smallish zucchini + yellow squash)
1 longish red bell pepper
1/3 cup tomato puree (such as Pomi) or canned plain tomato sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
Few sprigs fresh thyme
1 cup crumbled feta

Serves 8

  • Heat the oven to 375°F. Lightly flour a work surface, lay the sheet of pastry out, and gently roll until it measures about 11 x 15 inches. Slide the pastry onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Prick the pastry all over with a fork, at about 1-inch intervals.
  • Spread the tomato puree or sauce evenly over the pastry, leaving a one-inch border around the edges.
  • Trim the ends off the eggplant, zucchini and yellow squash. As carefully as you can, trim the ends off the red pepper and remove the core, leaving the edges intact, like a tube.
  • On a mandoline, adjustable-blade slicer or with a very sharp knife, cut the eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash and red pepper into very thin slices, approximately 1/16-inch thick.
  • Arrange slightly overlapped slices of vegetables concentrically or in rows over the tomato puree or sauce, alternating vegetables. You’ll probably have a few leftover.
  • Drizzle vegetables with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and sprinkle de-stemmed thyme leaves over the vegetables.
  • Bake in the heated oven until the pastry is puffed and browned (including on the bottom), 25 to 30 min and the vegetables look softened. Slide onto a cutting board, sprinkle with the feta, and cut into squares or strips. (A pizza wheel worked surprisingly well for this.) Serve warm or at room temperature.

Jalapeno Egg Salad

Recipe courtesy the Homesick Texan

A good recipe for those hot peppers in your bins…

6 Hard-boiled Eggs
1 pickled or fresh Jalapeno, seeds + stem removed, diced Pepper (or similar)
1 Tbls finely chopped Green Onion
1 tsp chopped Cilantro
1/4 tsp ground Cumin
1 Tbls Mayonnaise
2 Tbls Yellow Mustard
1 tsp Lemon Juice
Salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste
Bread or Tortilla Chips for serving

  • Peel the eggs, then roughly chop
  • Gently stir in jalapeno, green onion, cilantro, cumin, mayo, mustard and lemon juice
  • Season with salt, pepper and cayenne
  • Serve

Zucchini Breakfast Casserole

6-8 Eggs
1 cup Ricotta Cheese
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
1/4 tsp Tabasco Sauce (or similar)
1 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground Black Pepper
3 cups grated Zucchini
1 1/2 cups chopped Plum Tomatoes
1/2 cup sliced, fresh Basil
4 cups cubed, day-old Bread
Olive Oil

Serves 6-8

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • In a large bowl beat the eggs. Add the ricotta and beat until smooth. Mix in the grated Parmesan cheese, Tabasco, salt and pepper.
  • Prepare the vegetables and bread. Once you chop the tomatoes, squeeze excess moisture out of them by pressing them in a sieve, or wrapping in paper towels and squeezing. Add the tomatoes, basil, and zucchini to the egg mixture.
  • Moisten the bread cubes with a little water then squeeze out any excess moisture using paper towels. Mix the bread cubes into the egg mixture.
  • Coat the bottom and sides of a 9×13 baking dish generously with olive oil.
  • Pour the egg vegetable mixture into the baking pan and even it out in the pan. Place in the middle rack of the oven. Bake for 30 minutes at 350°F.
  • The casserole should puff up and brown lightly. If it hasn’t after 30 minutes at 350, increase the heat to 425° and cook for 5-10 minutes further.
  • Remove from oven and let cool on a rack for 10 minutes before cutting into squares to serve.