When I think of pesto, a variety of pasta dishes immediately come to mind, but this week, I wanted to push outside the box. This recipe offers a refreshing take on cooking with pesto that embraces all of its delicious qualities while inspiring a new approach, and it includes white beans, which I’m just crazy about. And it provides the perfect opportunity to dig into the delicious pesto in your shares this week, compliments of a Main Street Farms and Crooked Carrot collaboration! Pesto and White Bean Soup Inspired by the Food Network Kitchen Makes 6 servings Ingredients: 2-3 tbsp. Olive Oil 1 small Onion, diced 4-6 cloves of Garlic, sliced 1 bunch Kale, stems removed and leaves torn into chunks – or – 1 bag Baby Spinach pinch of Red Pepper Flakes 2 (15 oz.) cans Cannellini Beans, drained – or 3 cups cooked Cannellini Beans 1 cup Water 3 tbsp. Pesto 2 tbsp. Grated Parmesan 3 cups Chicken Broth 1/2 cup Roasted Red Peppers, diced 1/4 cup Kalamata Olives, chopped (Optional) Salt and Pepper to taste Instructions: Heat oil in stock pot over medium low heat. Sauté Onions until soft and translucent. Add Garlic and Red Pepper Flakes. Sauté until aromatic, about 1-2 minutes. Add Cannellini Beans and Water and simmer until thick, about 8 minutes. Stir in Pesto and Grated Parmesan Add Chicken Broth. Simmer for 15 minutes. Add Kale or Spinach and mix until just begins to wilt the leaves. Stir in Roasted Red Peppers and Olives. Add Salt and Pepper to taste. Serve hot with fresh, crusty bread. Image courtesy of: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchens/pesto-bean-soup-recipe.html.
We wanted to take a moment to celebrate our local partners who helped us kick off our very first Winter CSA share, back in December – Dave and Carly Dougherty of Food and Ferments! About Food and Ferments: Let’s just say, when we met Carly and Dave, we became instant friends and collaborators, sharing community with people of like minds and having the pleasure of growing vegetables for them to turn into delicious fermented foods. Although Carly is originally from the CNY area, she met Dave in his hometown of Philadelphia. With roots in farming and food, it wasn’t long before they teamed up to launch Food and Ferments in 2012. In 2014, they returned to Central New York, making their home and building their kitchen on the farmland where Carly grew up, at Twin Oaks Dairy, an organic farm still run by her family. While living in the big city together gave them broader perspective, returning to Twin Oaks was truly coming home, to deep connections with the land and farmers, to shared meals and family. Dave and Carly’s experiences together have given them a shared vision of a hybrid life – days spent shredding cabbage and culturing fermented beverages in the country, paired with weekends traveling to cities and local towns, selling goods throughout the east coast from Philadelphia to Upstate New York. You can find Food and Ferments near our Main Street farmstand in the C Shed at the CNY Regional Market in Syracuse every Saturday. Be sure to stop by, say hello, and try out more of their wide selection of deliciously fermented foods! About Old World Sauerkraut: Food and Ferments’ Old World Sauerkraut is made from Main Street Farms’ green cabbage, caraway seeds and sea salt. Carly and Dave’s favorite ways to eat it are: atop eggs and cheese on breakfast sandwiches alongside eggs and bacon in the morning as a condiment for hot dogs or sausage in lieu of salad dressing We enjoy Dave and Carly’s food and their friendship, and it’s been a treat to get to share their story and their handiwork with you!
This 2016 Winter CSA season, on top of all those veggies in your share, we are including one “value-added” item from a local producer at every pickup. This week, we’d like to highlight our special guest, Ithaca Soy and the item the item they are contributing to our CSA, Tofu Kan. About Ithaca Soy: We can’t even remember when we became friends with Adam Potenza, the owner of Ithaca Soy, but his company’s tofu has fed our addiction for years! Adam grew up working on his dad Tony’s soybean farm, which also happens to be the first organic farm EVER in New York State! Now, all these years later, Potenza Organic Farms is the exclusive supplier of Ithaca Soy’s soy. Adam exemplifies what it means to run a local business, and he’s one of the only handmade tofu producers in the state. About Tofu Kan: Tofu Kan is an original Ithaca Soy creation – baked, marinated tofu that comes ready to eat, with little-to-no preparation involved. Simply slice it thinly and layer it onto deli sandwiches, cube it and sprinkle it on top of salads and soups, mix it into a stir fry, or warm it up and serve it as a main course. Adam’s Recommendations: Start with a good sourdough bread and add Tofu Kan, thinly sliced onion, lettuce, and stone ground mustard. Slice thinly and sauté or fry in a heavy pan. Then add to peanut lime noodles! Cube and lightly cover in chili powder, smoked paprika and olive oil (or any oil). Bake on a baking sheet with parchment paper at 300º for 25-30 minutes. This gives a good mock-meat taste and you can add it to anything from chili to fried rice.
I think I fall into that unusual category of people who are crazy about Brussels sprouts. You could put a giant bowl of them in front of me and every last one would be gone within minutes. I hear that this is not the norm, though. If you find yourself with some Brussels sprouts on your hands and aren’t quite sure what to do with them, here are a few tips to help you through the preparation process: Storage: If you’re in possession of a stalk or 2 of Brussels sprouts but know you won’t be cooking them for a little while, leave them on the stalk and refrigerate them. If space is an issue, trim them off the stalk and store them, uncovered, in a bowl in the fridge until you’re ready to eat them. The outer layer will shrivel, and you’ll need to peel it off and discard it before preparing the sprouts, but they will still be crisp and yummy! Sprouts keep in the fridge for several weeks, if handled properly. Preparation: Trim Brussels sprouts off stalk, and cut off stem flush at base of each sprout. Before going any further, soak Brussels sprouts in warm water for 10 minutes. This will release any dirt and little unwanted critters that might be lurking around the top layers. Once soaking is complete, drain and rinse as usual. Discard any withered layers and trim off damaged areas before cooking. If cooking Brussels sprouts whole, cut a small X in the top (not the stem side). This will help the sprouts to cook through more evenly. Alternatively, cut sprouts in half, or in quarters if larger, to allow for quicker cooking while still keeping the layers of the sprout intact. Recipe Inspiration: My favorite way to cook Brussels Sprouts is actually to shred them by slicing them thinly with a knife. I caramelize some minced Shallots in a skillet with Bacon Grease, add the shredded Sprouts, a splash of Apple Cider to round out the flavor, and Salt and Pepper to taste. Sauté until they’re just wilted and voila! Simple, flavorful, and delicious! *Image courtesy of: http://www.taylorfarms.com/products/classic-vegetables/brussels-sprouts/.
This soup is a take on traditional Potato Leek Soup. I use ham stock instead of chicken, because it’s flavor complements the potatoes and cream so nicely. The buttermilk adds a tanginess that makes this soup stand out from other versions in complexity. For a vegetarian version, simply substitute vegetable stock in place of the meat stock. Potato Leek Soup By Holly Rodricks Makes 4-6 servings. Ingredients: 3 Leeks (white and pale green parts only), rinsed, halved, and sliced 3-4 tbsp. Unsalted Butter 2 large Potatoes, peeled, halved, and sliced thinly 1 quart Ham Stock (Chicken Stock or Vegetable Stock may be substituted.) 1 Bay Leaf 1/4 tsp. dried Lemon Thyme (Use regular Thyme, if Lemon is not available) 1/2 tsp. ground White Pepper 1/8 tsp. Nutmeg 1/2 cup Heavy Cream 1 cup Buttermilk Salt to taste Instructions: Melt Butter in skillet or large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add Leeks and caramelize, stirring occasionally for 15-20 minutes until soft, sweet, and translucent. (The goal here is to cook over a low enough heat that the Leeks and Butter do not brown/discolor.) While Leeks are caramelizing, bring Stock to a boil in a large stock pot. Add sliced Potatoes, Bay Leaf, Thyme, White Pepper, and Nutmeg. Reduce heat to simmer. Add caramelized Leeks. Allow soup to simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender and falling apart when mixed. Remove soup from heat and Salt to taste. Add Cream and Buttermilk. Use immersion blender to mix and liquefy. Serve hot with a fresh crust of buttered bread.