What’s in the box 6/28/16

Clockwise from top right: Green Romaine Lettuce, Red Romaine Lettuce, Fennel, Radicchio, Zucchini OR Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Sugarloaf Chicory

CSA Week #5 – June 28 – July 1

Click on an item below to see a photo and get cooking tips & recipes.

 A note on chicories….  Last week we harvested escarole, the first of our chicory plantings.  The chicory family is a wide and varied group-they can be loose-leafed or tightly-headed, tapered or round, smooth-leaved or frilled. They are also brightly colored, ranging from purest white and pale yellow to bright green or maroon. All members of the chicory family are favored for the bitterness that they all share, unlike lettuces which are chosen for their delicacy.

The chicories’ bite and texture combine nicely with richer ingredients in salads, like nuts, fruits, and sharp cheeses or bacon, smoked salmon, chicken, or ham.

This week we have two more chicories to harvest, radicchio and sugarloaf.  Both of these are mildly bitter and their leaves are tender. Try some of the recipes below and you might end up with a chicory addiction just like me!

Radicchio – I like to mix the radicchio and sugarloaf chicory together in salads dressed with lemon juice, olive oil, fresh crushed garlic, shaved parmesan and salt & pepper.  Slice the leaves into ribbons – the colors mixed together in the salad bowl are beautiful!  My brother-in-law loves to grill the radicchio, which is pretty amazing!  Try the recipe below.

Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw or Cooked When to Use: Within 5 days

Sugarloaf Chicory – This is the first year we’ve grown this chicory.  The entire head is tender and mildly bitter – you can remove the base and then slice ribbons all the way up the head.  

Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw or Cooked  When to Use: Within 5 days

Red Romaine Lettuce – It’s the perfect time of year for dinner salads!  With sliced chicken or fish (or roasted veggies) on top, these romaine leaves are sturdy enough to hold up well in heavier salads and dressings. You could also try lettuce wraps!
Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw  When to use: Within 5 days.

Green Romaine Lettuce
Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw  When to use: Within 5 days.

Fennel –  The bulbs are traditionally the part of the fennel used in recipes, but you can use the stems and fronds too.  It’s my secret ingredient in minestrone soup.  It really adds wonderful flavor to so many recipes. Here are some great recipe ideas from Serious Eats (even for the licorice haters out there!).  
Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw or Cooked When to use: Within 5 days.

Swiss Chard – Did you try Grannie’s swiss chard recipe?  It’s the one that gets the most requests in our house.  My mom also introduced me to swiss chard pesto. (What?! It’s delicious!)Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw Pesto, Cooked When to use: Within 5 days.  

Zucchini/Summer Squash – (2-3 pieces depending on size)
We’ve just started harvesting our summer squash and zucchini, so you can expect to receive it in your shares on and off through the summer months.  It is extremely versatile – use in soup, throw on the grill, bake some loaves of zucchini bread!  Try some of the recipes below.   Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw or Cooked, Baked When to use: Within 5 days. 

STORAGE NOTE
In general, greens should be stored in an airtight plastic bag or container.  They “go bad” when they dehydrate, so never put them straight in your fridge.  If you find that they have gone “limp”, a tell-tale sigh of dehydration, you can try soaking them in a bowl of cold water for a period of time.  Often they will perk right back up again!
  
Recipes

Grilled (or seared) Radicchio with Garlic, Balsamic & Mozzerella
Shredded Radicchio with Hard-cooked Egg, Walnut Vinaigrette & Breadcrumbs
Simple Fennel with Olive Oil & Parmesan
Fennel, Escarole & White Bean Salad with Gruyere
Balsamic Grilled Radicchio
Sauteed Zucchini with Mint, Basil & Pine Nuts

Bon appetit! xoMaggie

At the Farmers’ Market

As a separate program from our CSA, we grow produce for 3 farmers’ markets on Long Island.  Our CSA members are often our best customers at the market, so please stop by and say “hello”!

Islip – Saturdays 7am-12am
Port Washington – Saturdays 8am-12pm
Huntington – Sundays 7am-12pm

Click here for maps & directions to the markets.

One thought on “What’s in the box 6/28/16

  1. I’m surprised to see chicory so early in the year….. always thought of it as a late fall veggie. Someone said that being exposed to a cool night or two mellows the bitterness. Not complaining – I ate every last leaf lol it just made it a little harder to find recipes appropriate for summer. I made a home-made casear dressing (10 anchovy, 1-2 cloves raw garlic ground by mortar/pestal, 1/2t dry mustard, 1/4t salt, juice of 3 small lemons and an equal amount of oil – with or without 1 egg yolk – hit it with an immersion blender and then add whatever amount of grated parm works for you. that’s it) and did a combo of mixed romaines, small slivers of raddiccio and small slivers of sugarloaf chicory. This has been part of my lunch and dinner menu all week! Can’t get enough of it.

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