Monthly Archives: April 2015

Recipe: Caramelized Butternut Squash Wedges with a Sage Hazelnut Pesto

We found this recipe to be pretty flexible.  We didn’t have the right cheese (we used some slightly dried out Dubliner) and added a little lemon juice since the squash is pretty sweet.  If you don’t have hazelnuts, you could substitute almonds, pine nuts, walnuts, etc.  We loved the result.  The recipe is from food52, and as usual you can see the original webpage by clicking on the picture.

Caramelized Butternut Squash Wedges with a Sage Hazelnut Pesto

Photo credit: James Ransom

 

 Author Notes: Sage and butternut squash are a classic pairing. This is my riff on that pairing – a combination of squash wedges roasted at a very high heat topped with a hazelnut, sage, and ricotta salata pesto-ish topping. The idea to make a pesto using sage was inspired by the sage pesto in the Zuni Cafe Cookbook. The finished dish is great hot or at room temperature. – melissav

Food52 Review: Remember that potato chip commercial that goes: “Betcha can’t eat just one?” Well, that’s kind of how we felt, eating these squash wedges right out of the bowl. With our fingers. In a 500-degree oven, melissav’s squash develops gorgeous bronzed edges and an almost candied interior. A hint of cayenne brings a subtle kick. The pesto, almost impossibly fragrant, is rich and subtle at the same time. It’s garlicky without being overpowering, the toasted hazelnuts give it richness and depth, and the ricotta salata lends the otherwise earthy pesto a fresh salinity. We dare you to eat just one wedge. – A&M

Ingredients

Sage, Hazelnut, Ricotta Salata Pesto

  • 1/4 cup sage, chopped
  • 4-5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 1/3 cup hazelnuts, toasted
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons ricotta salata, crumbled or chopped until a medium fine crumble
  • Salt

Butternut Squash

  • 2 butternut squashes [about 3.5 lbs total when unpeeled]
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoons cayenne, depending on taste

Procedure

  1. Preheat the oven to 500 and place a rack in the lowest slot in the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
  2. Peel the butternut squash, cut in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Cut each squash half in half widthwise, right where the slender part curves out to the bulge. Cut each quarter into about 1 inch wedges (see picture) and place in a bowl.
  3. Toss squash with olive oil, sugar, salt, and cayenne. Place in a single layer on baking sheet.
  4. Roast for 10 to 15 minutes until caramelized. Remove from oven and flip over. Bake another 10 to 15 minutes until caramelized on the other side and cooked through. The pieces on the edges of the baking sheet will caramelize first so you want to move around during the baking time.
  5. While the squash is roasting, make the pesto: Warm 3 tablespoons olive oil, sage, and garlic in a small pan over very low heat just until the oil bubbles. Pour in a small bowl, reserving the garlic clove. Place the toasted hazelnuts in mini food processor along with the garlic clove and process until a fine crumble and add to the bowl (alternatively, you can do by hand or in a mortar and pestle). Add the cheese to the bowl along with 1 to 2 tablespoons more olive oil and stir until combined and salt to taste. This is not a traditional pesto — more nutty than herby and not so much oil.
  6. Once the squash is roasted, place in a large bowl and toss with pesto to taste. Dig in.

Notes

  • Serves 4

–posted by Steven

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What’s in the Box for April 28 – May 1, 2015

In this week’s box we have:

  • salad reds and greens
  • Lacinato kale
  • rainbow chard
  • arugula
  • fennel
  • Bloomsdale spinach OR rapini
  • beets with tops
  • tenderstem broccoli*
  • leeks
  • sugar snap OR Green Arrow shelling peas
  • butternut squash
  • broccoli Romanesco
  • herbs: chives and sage

*tenderstem – use the whole stem, peeling is not needed –posted by Steven

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Earn a free CSA Box (a $35 value)

Lindencroft Farm is looking for 7 new CSA subscribers, and you can help.  If you are a current subscriber and you refer someone to us that becomes a new subscriber, we will give you a free box of veggies (i.e. we will take $35 off of your next month).  You can refer more than once and earn the box for each new subscriber, but once we have added the 7 new folks the promotion will be over.

Have them contact us at:  info <at> lindencroft <dot> com

Thanks!

–posted by Steven

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Know Your Veggies: Nepitella (Calamintha nepeta)

Nepitella is the Italian name for Calamintha nepeta.  It’s sometimes called lesser calamint in English.  A member of the mint family, nepitella grows wild in Italy, particularly in Umbria and Tuscany.  It’s flavor is something like a cross between mint and oregano, and can be used on nearly any savory dish.  We also throw a few leaves and some lemon slices in our water pitcher for a refreshing beverage .  This mint is growing in popularity, and we have seen it on pizza in SF.

Calamintha nepeta nepeta0.jpg

Photo credit: “Calamintha nepeta nepeta0” by Kurt Stüber [1] – caliban.mpiz-koeln.mpg.de/mavica/index.html part of http://www.biolib.de. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Calamintha_nepeta_nepeta0.jpg#/media/File:Calamintha_nepeta_nepeta0.jpg

–posted by Steven

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What’s in the Box for April 21-24, 2015

In this week’s (somewhat absurdly overflowing) box we have:

  • asparagus (sadly, may be the last week)
  • salad reds and greens
  • Lacinato kale
  • rainbow chard
  • purple Viking potatoes
  • wild arugula
  • Bloomsdale spinach
  • rapini
  • heirloom carrots
  • Farao cabbage
  • bunching onions
  • Green Arrow shelling peas
  • sugar snap peas
  • herbs: nepitella and tarragon
  • Eureka lemons

–posted by Steven

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Recipe: Grits and Greens

A couple of our subscribers have asked about what to do with collards.  So, this week’s recipe (really entitled “Fried Eggs and Collard Greens over Polenta”) should fit the bill.  A traditional, ubiquitous Southern classic, it’s from theKitchn.com, and as always you can click on the picture to pull up the original.

Fried Eggs and Collard Greens over Polenta

Photo credit: Emma Christensen

 

 Author Notes:

I know the Southerners in the group are going to wonder why these aren’t grits instead of polenta — after all, there are collard greens involved. Really, I find the difference in taste is pretty subtle, and I just happened to have some stone-ground cornmeal from Oxford, Mississippi, in my pantry, so I used that. This was finer than the grits I grew up with, so I’m calling it polenta. Please feel free to debate the topic in the comments.

I cooked my greens with bacon, but you can easily leave it out for a vegetarian version.

Tester’s Notes: 

This is one of those dishes that you’ll make once and then never need to look at the recipe again. Which is handy because it’s a particularly good breakfast to make the morning after a slightly overindulgent evening, if you catch my meaning. It’s also just as easy to make for one person as it is to make for a whole house of guests — just make an extra-big batch of polenta, throw in another bunch of collards, and fry up extra eggs.

If you’re new to collards, this bacon-y recipe is a grand way to be introduced. You can also sub in any hearty greens you might have handy, like spinach, chard, or kale. If you’re vegetarian, skip the bacon (obviously!), but I’d recommend adding some mushrooms or peppers to add a little variety to your bites of greens.

Oh, and P.S.: If you want to add some cheese to the polenta, I won’t tell anyone. Just sayin’.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 4 to 5 strips thick-cut bacon (about 1/4 pound), roughly chopped
  • 1 medium red or yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large bunch collard greens (14 to 16 ounces), stems removed and leaves sliced into ribbons
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 to 1 cup chicken broth
  • 4 to 8 large eggs (1 to 2 eggs per person)
  • Salt and pepper

Procedure

  1. Before cooking the greens, get the polenta going. Bring the milk and water to rapid simmer in a medium sauce pan. Add the cornmeal in a steady stream, whisking as you go. Season with salt and pepper (about a teaspoon of salt and a few grinds of pepper to start, to taste). Continue to cook, whisking, until the polenta begins to thicken.
  2. Reduce the heat to low and cover. Every 10 minutes, uncover the pot and stir the polenta, making sure to scrape the bottom and corners of the pan. The polenta is done when its creamy and no longer tastes raw, after 20 to 30 minutes. (If the collards aren’t quite done yet when the polenta is finished, you can turn off the heat and cover the pan to keep the polenta warm. When you are ready to serve it, stir to loosen it up and add a bit more milk if necessary.)
  3. Warm a large skillet over medium heat and add the chopped bacon. Cook until the bacon fat has rendered and the bacon is getting crispy. Move the bacon to one side of the pan and pour off all but a tablespoon or so of the bacon fat.
  4. Add the onions to the pan with the bacon and continue to cook until the bacon is as crispy as you like it and the onions are soft and beginning to caramelize, 8 to 10 more minutes.
  5. Raise the heat to medium-high and add the collard greens and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Stir and toss until the greens are coated in the bacon fat and beginning to wilt. Add 1/2 cup of the chicken broth, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat slightly and cover the pan. Cook for 5 to 10 minutes, adding more chicken broth if the mixture gets dry, until the collard greens are dark green and soft. Taste and add more salt and pepper as needed.
  6. Melt a little butter over medium heat in a non-stick or cast iron skillet. Fry the eggs in batches.
  7. To serve, put a big scoop of polenta on each plate and top it with the greens and bacon mixture and a fried egg or two. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and hot sauce, if desired.

Notes

  • Serves 4
  • Make-Ahead Breakfast: Leftover collards keep very well — I often make a big batch on the weekend and warm them up for breakfasts during the week. The polenta will firm up and lose its creaminess, but is also great reheated. You could also serve the collards with toast or any other prepared grain.

–posted by Steven

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What’s in the Box for April 14 – 17, 2015

In this week’s box we have:

  • asparagus
  • salad reds and greens
  • Lacinato kale
  • collards
  • sunchokes OR purple Viking potatoes
  • arugula
  • Bloomsdale spinach OR rapini
  • radicchio
  • herbs: marjoram, thyme, and chives
  • lemons

–posted by Steven

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