From left to right: Roselle, Bok Choi, Easter Egg Radishes, Chestnuts, Fuyu Persimmon, Tulsi Basil, Arugula/Mizuna mix, Sweet Potato Fingerlings (not pictured: Tri-Color Beans::Thursday members only this week)
Welcome to November! If you snuck a few pieces of candy from your kids’ Halloween haul on Monday, don’t feel guilty – that’s why we’re here! With our first crops of lettuce (which you’ll be seeing soon), bok choi and “easter egg” radishes, Fall’s bounty is making its mark. These delicious and nutrient dense crops will nourish and excite your tastebuds through Thanksgiving season.
In your share this week will be:
Bok Choi: We highly recommend this asian cooking green as a stir-fry staple. It’s excellent sautéed with grated ginger and minced garlic. The Kitchn is a really great cooking/kitchen fare site that compiled 10 awesome recipes for using choi, from soups to a brown rice congee. Follow the link here.
Roselle Hibiscus: Try this recipe for “Florida Cranberry” sauce and save it for Thanksgiving! You can also pop your Roselle into the freezer, whole, to preserve for later use. Break them out for a festive Sorrell Drink around the holidays with a cinnamon stick and splash of rum. Substitute the pint of fresh Sorrell for the dried in the recipe. You do not need to remove the seed pods if you’re making a drink. You do want to remove them if you’re making relishes or jam. There are many variations including with ginger, cinnamon, cloves, etc. (Note: Wednesday members will receive Roselle this week, Tri-Color Beans next week)
1 1/2 c. orange or apple juice
1 1/3 c. sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
a couple of dashes of ground cloves
24 oz. Florida cranberries (seed pods removed)
1 c. raisins (golden or ordinary)
1 c. chopped pecans
*Chopped citrus and orange zest (Amy’s suggestion)
In a saucepan, combine juice, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently until sugar is dissolved. Add Florida cranberries and raisins, bring to a boil.
Reduce heat, simmer 3-4 minutes.
Remove from heat, stir in nuts. Chill for several hours.
Chestnuts: We recommend boiling these guys in a deep saucepan or pot (no specific amount of water, just adequately cover the chestnuts) for about 10-15 minutes until the inner flesh is cooked and begins to take on a “mashed potato” consistency. Remove from heat, allow chestnuts to sit in water for five or so minutes before draining and serving! If you do plan on roasting, be sure to make an incision with a very sharp knife in each nut to allow built up steam to ventilate. This recipe from Epicurious features chestnuts as the center for a Thanksgiving stuffing, which can be made now and frozen until Turkey Day! (Note: make sure to refrigerate your chestnuts and eat them within 1-2 weeks)
Fuyu Persimmons: These non-astringent persimmons can be eaten raw at a much firmer consistency than the astringent Saijos. Here is a Epicurious recipe detailing a Persimmon relish! If you’re planning on making a relish for Thanksgiving, the recipe can be made up to 3 days prior to serving, so you can make a practice batch now and try it again with the next Fuyu distribution. Otherwise, slice them onto your sandwiches or onto a salad!
- 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon mustard seed
1/2 cup sherry
1/4 cup sherry wine vinegar
4 firm-ripe Fuyu persimmons, finely diced and seeded if necessary (about 3 cups total)
1/4 cup dried currants
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
In heavy medium skillet over moderate heat, heat oil until hot but not smoking. Add onion and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Add mustard seed and sherry, then bring to boil and reduce until no liquid remains, 1 to 2 minutes. Add sherry vinegar, persimmons, and 1 cup water, then bring to boil and reduce by 3/4, about 8 minutes. Add currants and continue cooking until almost no liquid remains and currants are plumped, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in salt and pepper. Transfer 1/2 relish to food processor and pulse until smooth, about 30 seconds. Return processed relish to skillet and stir to combine. Transfer to airtight container and refrigerate at least 24 hours and up to 3 days.
Tulsi Basil: Tulsi, also known as “Holy Basil”, is at the epicenter of the Aruyvedic herbal tradition. As an adaptogenic herb, Tulsi contains a large swatch of medicinal properties ranging from immune boost response to its renown as an antioxidant. The benefits of Tulsi are best derived from making a tea – simply bring tulsi leaves and flowers (you can throw the whole bunch in, minus the rubberband!) to a boil, reduce heat and let simmer for 15-20 minutes or until your liquid batch is dark and carries Tulsi’s clovey fragrance. Drink warm or store in fridge for a cooling tea.
Sweet Potato Fingerling Mix: A mix batch of Murasakis and yams. The skin on these are thin enough where you won’t have to feel them should you throw these beauties in the oven and bake them with a little cinnamon or nutmeg. Here is a great link breaking down the best roasted sweet potato methodology.
Arugula/Mizuna Mix: High in vitamin C, folate and iron, these greens pack a mild peppery kick to any salad preparation. The Arugula spice here is a great counterbalance to the milder Mizuna taste. Chop the greens roughly and toss it with boiled new potatoes, olive oil, salt and pepper.
Easter Egg Radishes: The crisp flesh carries a mild pepperiness and is a great source of Vitamins A, C, potassium, zinc and dietary fiber. Include in a simple sautee with butter and salt OR try chopping and adding them to tacos and sandwiches for satisfying crunch and radishy zing. Not quite as biting as the red radishes, but still very flavorful!
Tri-Color Beans: Try a zesty lemon sautee with these tender beans: Sauté beans, lemon zest, salt, and pepper in olive oil or ghee (clarified butter) in a large skillet until beans are hot and cooked tender-crisp, 2 to 3 minutes. Squeeze lemon half over beans, and serve immediately. (Note: Thursday members will be receiving beans this week, Wednesday members will receive next week)