We’re very excited to begin our Main Fall CSA season! We hope to have a productive and successful 10 weeks. Members like you provide critical financial support at the beginning of the season to fund the continued investment in seed, tools and all the resources necessary to continue to nurture an ecologically sustainable environment, to provide full-time employment and to grow the highest quality food we can.
In your share this week will be:
Fuyu Persimmons: Unlike the astringent Hachiyas, Fuyus can be eaten firm like an apple or pear. These fruits are squat and flat and are excellent in salads or as a raw snack. The Kitchn compiled a list of baking recipes for persimmons – some call for the softer, Saijo, but the Fuyus can be applied very well here too. Let ripen for a day or two for deeper orange coloration and sweetness.
Shishito Peppers: These peppers are somewhat in the middle on the bitter-sweet spectrum. Though not quite as sweet as our Jimmy Nardello peppers, a blistered shishito sautee makes its own way in the world. Here’s an excerpt from Epicurious (orginially published by Deborah Madison):
Here’s what you do. Heat a little olive oil in a wide sauté pan until it is good and hot but not smoking. Add the peppers and cook them over medium, tossing and turning them frequently until they blister. They shouldn’t char except in places. Don’t rush. It takes 10 to 15 minutes to cook a panful of peppers. When they’re done, toss them with sea salt and add a squeeze of fresh lemon. Slide the peppers into a bowl and serve them hot. You pick them up by the stem end and eat the whole thing, minus the stem, that is.
You can probably do fancier, cheffy things with them, but they’re terrific like this. For variety, I sometimes use a little toasted sesame oil instead of olive oil and finish them with togarashi. If you have leftovers, an unlikely event in my experience, chop off the stems and put the peppers in an omelet or some scrambled eggs.
Mizuna: Mizuna is a Japanese mild mustard that can be used in soups and salads. We consistently pick these leaves young to ensure tenderness. I personally like to steam/heat wilt these leaves in stir-fries or when making pasta of any kind!
Cucumbers: Beyond a raw snack or use in a salad, I’m highly recommending this Bread & Butter pickle recipe from Food & Wine. Pickling is a wonderful way to utilize a larger volume of veggies if you have a stock of them in your fridge and make for a cooling snack or a side pairing.
Sweet Potato Fingerlings (Carolina Ruby or Covington): Packed with nutrients, these smaller sweet potato fingerlings are a healthy and colorful addition to any meal. Whether mashed, roasted, or baked, this versatile crop spells Fall in many ways. As Thanksgiving approaches, its probably not a bad idea to start practicing a mini version of a Sweet Potato Casserole for Turkey Day.
Roselle Hibiscus: These are the calyxes of our Roselle Hibiscus plant. Also known as Sorrel or Florida Cranberry, these fruits are primary used to make a semi-tart tea that can be consumed hot or cold. You can bring the calyxes (there’s 1# in your bag this week) in about a gallon water to a boil, reduce to a simmer and let steep for 20-40 minutes, depending on desired strength. Sweeten to taste with honey, sugar or agave.
Mustard Greens: One of my favorite cooking greens. Mustard greens pack a punch unless steamed, or sautéed. Once you do cook them, the spice is adequately neutralized and serves as a wonderful complimentary flavor as a side item or served over a bed of rice. All varieties of Mustard are a rich source of Vitamins A, C & K.
Tokyo Turnips: These small roots are incredibly tender and make for easy pre-cook processing (most can simply be halved to be cooking ready). Steam, sautee, roast or simply shave into a salad!