Wow, this week has been full!
When I last blogged we'd just given out the first veg share, following that work day/ first social event and then we did the share all over again.
Here are a few pics from that first pick up!
In between that we have been planting Pak Choi, Chinese Cabbage, Chicory, Endive, Winter Radish, Kohlrabi, Turnips and more Coriander.
The work day and social were held back to back as one event on Saturday 4th.
The sun shone for most of the day with only one shower to hide from.
The workday task was weeding the carrots, and the results are great, the Carrots were doing well but now they are in prime condition to be a great crop.
Unsurprisingly given the damp warm conditions we have blight coming through the Potatoes but we will still have potatoes into the autumn, after which the CSA steering group will decide if we buy in local organic potatoes to go through the winter with.
French beans doing really well, carrots great after work party weeded, leeks coming on well for autumn Squash starting to fruit, things are good ont the farm.
I thought I would post up the recipes that have been going out with the veg shares.
These have been compiled by a brilliant member of our steering group!
Not quite Nicoise
Not quite because there is no fish in it, and I’m not sure it needs the olives either, so I often leave them out, or use capers instead. Based on Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall’s recipe in River Cottage Veg Every Day.
For two (multiply up for more people)
250g new potatoes
120g French beans cut into about 5-6cm lengths
3 eggs. We always use organic or alternatively what I think of as very free range (the sort from hens that peck in back yards rather than the ones that just comply to the lowest legal standard for free range). Not only do they have a better life but they taste so much better as well.
A couple of large handfuls lettuce
A couple of sprigs of basil (about 8 leaves)
A scattering of tiny black olives or capers
Salt and pepper
For the dressing you need a tiny garlic clove (one of the little useless ones from the middle that you never know that to do with – or is that just me?); One and a half tablespoons good olive oil; half a tablespoon wine vinegar; half a teaspoon Dijon mustard and a pinch of sugar.
1. Cut the potatoes so they are similar sizes and boil until cooked. You need to cook the eggs and French beans at the same time. I usually steam the beans over the pan and drop the eggs into the boiling potato water for the last four minutes of their cooking time. Saves washing up multiple pans.
2. While the spuds, eggs and beans are cooking wash and dry the lettuce (a salad spinner really helps here, one of the few gadgets that gets cupboard space in our house) and pile into a large dish.
3. Once the eggs, potatoes and beans are cooked drain them and leave to cool.
4. In the meanwhile make the salad dressing by crushing the garlic clove to a paste with a bit of grainy sea salt and then put it and the rest of the ingredients into a little glass jar. Screw on the lid and shake like mad until it all emulsifies into a gorgeous golden coloured goo.
5. When the potatoes and eggs are cool enough to handle first cut the potatoes into wedges or chunks and toss them with a bit of dressing with the green beans. Toss the lettuce leaves with some more salad dressing. Peel the eggs and cut into quarters.
6. Assemble the salad by gently tossing the lettuce, beans and potatoes together in their bowl, adding the pieces of egg and the olives or capers if you’re using them. Then scatter over the shredded basil, drizzle with the rest of the salad dressing and season with salt and pepper.
These are named after the wonderful Polish chef who inspired this recipe by serving me something similar several years ago. They make a great summery alternative to roast potatoes.
Take small new potatoes, if necessary cutting them so they are not too dissimilar in size. Put them in a bowl with a tablespoon or so of olive oil, coarsely ground salt and pepper and some woody herbs. Thyme is good, but as often as not we use dried oregano. Toss the potatoes and flavourings together and pour into an ovenproof dish large enough so they can lie in a single layer but small enough so there is not too much space around them. Cook in the oven at about 200 degrees centigrade (gas mark 6) until they have a crispy outer but are cooked through to the point of a knife. They usually take about 45 minutes depending on the size of the potatoes and the vagaries of the individual oven.
Oma’s French beans
My Belgian grandmother’s recipe. A lovely alternative to simply boiling them.
Boil French beans until they are just cooked, meaning they cut crisply in half when you try one on the pan. Drain and refresh them (run under cold water to stop them cooking and help them keep their colour). Allow them to dry. In a heavy bottomed pan on a low heat gently sweat a finely chopped shallot in butter until they go sort of translucent, but don’t let them brown at all, then briefly sauté the beans in the shallot and butter mixture until they’re hot and coated in the oniony butter. Season with salt and pepper, then serve with the onions scooped over the top.