For the second week of the fall season we are pleased to bring you:
Purple Daikon Radish, Baby Bok Choi, Purple Basil, Tri-Colored Beans, Roselle, Uncured Fingerling Sweet Potatoes, Tokyo Turnips and Mississippi Hull Peas (in shell)
Purple Basil- This hybrid basil variety has a slightly stronger anise flavor than the common green sweet basil. The dark opal color of the leaves intensifies with maturity, although variegated green leaves are considered normal. Enjoy this fragrant basil in floral arrangements, as a colorful addition to a salad, or infuse it in some vinegar, the dark color leaches into the vinegar, leaving it a beautiful shade of burgundy. Savor it now because it’s the last week of basil.
Purple Daikon Radish- A beautifully radiant purple radish that, when cut, exhibits a starburst of color perfect raw on top of greens or sauteed.
Baby Bok Choi- First of the season. Bok Choi is known for its mild flavor and is good for stir-fries, braising, and soups. Wash it, chop it and throw it in a skillet with some olive oil and garlic, toss some of your turnips and green beans in for this weeks CSA veggie stir fry.
Mississippi Hull Peas- Also known as Southern Pea or Cowpea. Jamie and lalo taught me how to peel these peas out of the safety of their speckled purple and green pods. Simply snap the pea pod in half and rip the seam, you may have to give it a little help with your thumb. Once you get it open you can run your fingernail or thumb all the way down exposing all the little peas sitting politely single file line. Cook the peas as you would any other peas, add a little bacon fat to partake in a southern culinary tradition. Cucumbers -Instead of Peas for Saturday Market Pickups.
Tri-Colored Beans- A small sample of what’s to come. Our green beans come in a variety of colors, green, yellow and dark purple you should get them in your shares at least a few times this fall.
Roselle Calyces- These dark red “roses” are actually the seedpod of the beautiful hibiscus flower. The calyx is the first part of a flower that develops and is directly attached to the stem of the plant. The beautiful light pink petals of the hibiscus flower form inside the calyx and then eventually wilt and fall off leaving behind the deep red calyces guarding the seed pod. You can peel the calyces and use them on top of salads or freeze them for later. Boil them and make a Hibiscus Tea– A favorite amongst vampires, ghosts and goblins this time of year.
Uncured Fingerling Yams- These sweet potatoes were harvested from the ground a little less than a week ago making them, for most of you, the freshest sweet potatoes you have ever tasted. Most of the sweet potatoes you find in stores and markets have been cured. Curing is the ancient process of preserving foods by drawing moisture out of them. Once the majority of water is removed or dried up the food becomes inhospitable for the microbe growth that causes food spoilage. The curing process takes a good three weeks so you should have some cured sweet potatoes for the rest of the season. Give these little uncured fingerlings a good wash or scrub and prepare as usual, the skin is so tender and most nutritious so don’t bother peeling them, unless you have a lot of time and patience.
Tokyo Turnips- No, those are not white radishes they are in fact a smaller, mild, turnip with hints of nutty, sweet, earthy flavors. These mini pearl like turnips can be enjoyed both raw and cooked. When cooked, they are tender, buttery, slightly spicy and taste like a cross between a radish and a turnip. Aside from the roots, the bright green tops are edible and can be prepared just like any other greens, make sure to give them a good washing before you toss them in a salad or sautee them. A favorite way to cook these tender turnips is simply with a little butter and sugar try this recipe: Caramelized Tokyo Turnips