Just Harvested & In This Week’s Bins:

*CAMAROSA STRAWBERRIES (Frecker Farms, Organic, Carpinteria)
*KENNY GRAPEFRUIT  (Don Vincent, Organic, Goleta)
*PIXIE TANGERINES  (Somers Ranches, Santa Paula)
*RED CHARD  (Frecker Farms, Organic, Carpinteria)
*BROCCOLI   (Milliken Family Farms, Lompoc)
*RED RADISH   (Roots Organic Farm, Organic, Los Olivos)
*RED LEAF LETTUCE  (Frecker Farms, Organic, Carpinteria)
*BABY PURPLE ARTICHOKES (Roots Organic Farm, Organic, Los Olivos)

PURPLE CHOKES! Nothing says Spring has arrived like these heirloom artichokes from Jacob Grant. Beautiful in color, deep in flavor and generally have no spines for easy handling and minimal prep…leaving almost the WHOLE THING EDIBLE! We like to eat the stalks as well, you can spoon them out similar to eating bone marrow :)  *photo: jacobgrant
We’ve been eagerly awaiting strawberries from Alex Frecker, and this week they’ve arrived! Young farmer Alex Frecker has begun planting his biggest strawberry crop of his career planting over 60,000 strawberry plants at his Casitas Pass organic Farm. If all goes accorrding to plan, he’ll have high production through June, and if it stays really dry, possibly through the end of the year.

This Week’s Tips:

*Everything can go directly into the fridge…always a good idea to give your lettuce & greens a quick hydrating rinse and wrap in dishtowel before placing in the crisper. Berries are picked for PEAK ripeness, so be sure to enjoy pronto!

*PSA!!! Those chokes may have a pest/earwig or two hiding in the outer leaves, but an easy quick rinse does the trick. Small price to pay for these unsprayed gems!

*ARTICHOKE EVERYTHING from Martha: HERE

*ARTICHOKE BASICS—> CLICK HERE   

*USEFUL CHOKE PREP VIDEO FROM MARTHA—–> HERE

*DID YOU KNOW? In the United States, California provides nearly 100% of the U.S. crop, with Castroville being “The Artichoke Center of the World”. In 1947 Marilyn Monroe, then still going by her given name Norma Jean, was crowned Castroville’s first Artichoke Queen.

*Time to bust out your grapefruit spoons! Don Vincent and his daughter Breanne dropped off a fresh load for us yesterday and we are all excited to share one-of-a-kind fruit. A truly unique Grapefruit treat, called the Kenny Grapefruit can only be found at Vincent Farms in Goleta. A cross between a grapefruit and a navel, Kennys are known for their unparalleled low-acid sweetness, exceptional flavor, juiciness and big seeds.

*Kennys pair well with with other citrus, fresh herbs, strong cheeses, bitter greens, potatoes and seafood. Really great for breakfast sliced in half and eaten with a spoon, or segmented with yogurt, honey, granola, oatmeal, etc. Use the juice in cocktails, smoothies, syrups, jams, sauces or frozen desserts. Although Don Vincent prefers them by themselves, simply cut in half and eaten with a spoon.

This Week’s Recipes:

STEAMED ARTICHOKES w/ LEMON-BUTTER

INGREDIENTS:

artichokes

lemon juice

melted butter

salt

*Pro Tip—-slices radishes and put in melted butter for a post choke treat.

STEPS:

Bring about 1/2 inch water to a boil in a pan deep enough to hold the artichoke(s) standing up.

Add a teaspoon or two of salt (the artichoke will just be sitting it in, not submerged).

Set artichokes in the salted boiling water, cover the pan, reduce heat to maintain a steady simmer, and cook 20 minutes.

Check for done-ness – pull a leaf from close to the center of the leaves. If the leaf comes out easily, the artichokes are done; if there is resistance, continue cooking, checking for done-ness every 5 minutes. Depending on artichoke size, this can take a total of 40 minutes.

Add lemon juice to melted butter for an easy, delicious dip.

*adapted from smittenkitchen

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MARINATED & GRILLED (or oven roasted) ARTICHOKE

INGREDIENTS:

artichokes

¼  cup balsamic vinegar

¼  cup water

¼ cup soy sauce

1   T minced garlic

¼  cup olive oil

STEPS:

Boil or steam artichoke until bottom pierces easily, or a petal pulls off easily. (careful not to overcook)

Drain and ool. Cut artichoke in half lengthwise and any purple tipped petals.

Mix remaining ingredients in a large plastic bag. Place artichoke in the bag and coat all sides. For best flavor marinate in the mixture overnight in the refrigerator but should marinate at least one hour.

Drain artichoke. Place cut side down on a grill over a solid bed of medium coals or gas grill on medium. Grill until lightly browned on the cut side, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn artichokes over and drizzle some of the remaining marinade over the artichoke. Grill until petal tips are lightly charred, 3 to 4 minutes more.  Serve hot or room temperature

*adapted from cookingengineers

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EZ PAN ROASTED BROCCOLI

INGREDIENTS

  • 1.5 lbs broccoli
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 large garlic clove, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 Tbs. water

STEPS

  1. Trim and peel the broccoli stems. Cut the florets into 1-inch (2.5-cm) pieces, and cut the stems on the bias 1/4 inch (6 mm) thick
  2. In a 10-inch (25-cm) French skillet or fry pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until just golden and fragrant, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the garlic to a small bowl.

  3. Increase the heat to medium-high. Add the broccoli and red pepper flakes, and season with salt and black pepper. Pour in the water. Cover and steam for about 3 minutes. Uncover, stir and continue to cook until the broccoli is lightly browned and crisp-tender and the water has evaporated, 1 to 2 minute more. Scatter the garlic on top and serve immediately. Serves 4.

*adapted from 101cookbooks

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GARLICKY GREENS

INGREDIENTS

1 large bunch of kale or chard

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

fine grain sea salt

5 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped

1/4 cup Parmesan cheese (opt)

crushed red pepper flakes

STEPS

1. To de-stem each leaf of chard/kale, grab the main stalk in one hand and strip the leaf from the stem all the way up with the other. I then tear the big leaves into bite-sized pieces, but you can use a knife for this task if you prefer. Wash the greens in a big bowl (or sink) full of clean water, rinsing and swishing to rinse away any stubborn grit and dirt. Drain, rinse again, and set aside.

2. Hold off cooking the greens until just before eating. Then, in a large skillet heat the olive oil. Add a couple big pinches of salt and the greens. They should hiss and spit a bit when they hit the pan.

3. Stir continuously until their color gets bright green, and they just barely start to collapse – two, three, maybe four minutes, depending on how hot your pan is and how much structure your greens have. Then, just thirty seconds before you anticipate pulling the skillet off of the heat, stir in the garlic. Saute a bit, remove the pan from the heat, stir in the Parmesan, and add a big pinch of crushed red pepper flakes. Taste, add a bit of salt if needed, and serve immediately if not sooner.

*adapted from 101cookbooks

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SWISS CHARD TZATZIKI

In an otherwise traditional tzatziki, Swiss chard stands in for cucumber, adding a wealth of nutrients; whole-wheat pita wedges bring fiber to the hors d’oeuvre.

INGREDIENTS

1 bunch red Swiss chard, stemmed and finely chopped

1 garlic clove

1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

1 cup low-fat Greek yogurt

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 whole-wheat pitas, cut into wedges and toasted

STEPS

Prepare an ice bath; set aside. Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add chard; cook until just tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain. Immediately plunge into ice bath to stop the cooking. Drain.

Using a mortar and pestle, grind garlic and salt into a paste. Stir chard, yogurt, garlic paste, oil, lemon juice, and cayenne pepper in a medium bowl. Serve with pita wedges.

*adapted from bonappetit

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CHARD OSHITASHI

INGREDIENTS

1 bunch chard, preferably red, ends trimmed

2 tablespoons Japanese soy sauce

1 tablespoon bonito flakes (optional)

STEPS

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Working in batches, add chard and cook, adding more chard as space allows, until barely tender, 3 to 4 minutes.  You can add soy sauce now and enjoy it hot, OR, Drain, then submerge chard in a bowl of ice water.

When chard is cool, drain again, squeeze out excess liquid, and cut into bite-size pieces. Toss chard with soy sauce, top with bonito flakes, and divide among 2 bowls.

*adapted from marthastewart

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PAN WILTED CHARD

INGREDIENTS

2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1 bunch chard, tough stems removed and leaves coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

STEPS

In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute until lightly golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the chard and cook on high, constantly tossing the greens.

Cook uncovered until the greens are wilted. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Season to taste and enjoy.  Goes well in pastas, or with couscous, rice, or quinoa or also as a side dish for meat or fish

*adapted from MayoClinic

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GINGERY CHARD

I love this tangy and colorful side dish. It’s delicious on top of some grains, alongside fish, or even as a burger topping. Lemon and ginger help boost digestion, and the fiber in the greens is good for your belly.

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger (or more, can’t have too much)

1 bunch chard, trimmed, washed, and chopped into 1-inch strips

Juice and zest of 1/2 lemon

Salt

STEPS

Add the oil to a medium-hot pan and sauté the ginger for 1 minute. Then add the chard. Keep heat on high and let the chard wilt down before adding the lemon. Sizzling and popping is a good sound to hear. Be active tossing the pan in your hand.  Do a taste test and add a little salt if needed.

Toss together and serve hot.

*adapted from splendidtable

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2-MIN CHARD SAUTE

(prep time: 5 min)

INGREDIENTS

1 bunch chard stems removed, rough chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cloves of garlic, sliced thin

1 Chile de Arbol* or 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

*Chile de Arbol is a dried chile that you can find in most Mexican food sections of your grocery store. It adds great flavor and mild spice. I remove the top stem portion and then just crumble it using my fingers.

STEPS

*primarily use just the leaves, but a few rogue stems always end up in the mix and add such great texture and crunch to the dish.

1. Prep all of your ingredients and place a large skillet on medium-high heat. Let your skillet sit on the stove and heat up (note: this is the perfect time to pour yourself a glass of wine).

2. Next, add the olive oil to the pan with the chile (or red pepper flakes) and garlic, and cook until fragrant (about 1 minute). Scatter chopped chard leaves on top of hot oil. After about a minute, using tongs, turn the leaves until just wilted. Sprinkle with teaspoon salt. Turn off the heat and continue turning with the tongs. The chard will continue to cook as you turn the leaves. Toss into cooked pasta, serve on the side, with eggs, etc

*adapted from eatdrinkgarden

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ROASTED GARBANZO BEANS and GARLIC with CHARD

INGREDIENTS

BEANS

2 cups garbanzo or preferred bean

1 garlic clove, peeled

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

CHARD

1 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 garlic clove, peeled, crushed

3 small bay leaves, preferably fresh

1 onions, sliced

1 bunches Swiss chard, center stems cut out, leaves coarsely torn

1 cups veg/chicken broth

STEPS

1. GARBANZO BEANS:  Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine first 5 ingredients in 8x8x2-inch glass baking dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pour oil over; cover dish with foil. Roast until garlic is tender, about 45 minutes. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly, cover, and chill.

2. CHARD:Heat oil in large pot over medium-high heat. Add garlic, bay leaves, and shallots. Cover; cook until shallots are tender, about 2 minutes. Uncover; add half of chard. Toss until chard wilts and volume is reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Add remaining chard. Toss until chard wilts, about 2 minutes. Add broth. Cover and cook until chard is tender, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. Season chard with salt and pepper. Transfer chard mixture to large sieve set over bowl and drain. DO AHEAD: Can be prepared 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

3. Drain garbanzos and reserve oil; discard bay leaves. Combine garbanzos and chard in large skillet. Add 2 tablespoons oil reserved from garbanzos. Toss over medium heat until warmed through, moistening with more oil by tablespoonfuls if needed, about 5 minutes. Season with salt.

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