I think these recipes sum up where I am in my culinary life right now: raw salads. That is it. After a winter of soups and stews and roasted vegetables and all those dishes that feel so darn satisfying when the weather is cold, around here we have made the complete shift to summer salads. When the weather is steamy the very last thing I want to do is cook. I definitely don’t want to eat hot foods either. So I know you are all eating salads along with me, but thought I would remind you that these spring vegetables are so good eaten raw, tossed with a fresh dressing, perhaps served with a hard boiled egg and freshly baked bread.
Here we are, only week 2, and I am already obsessing about the weather. Sorry. I know you thought you could wait until June or even July to hear it. We have had such a hot dry streak we are already crying out for rain. The dry spell has enabled us to do all sorts of planting and transplanting, this is a good thing, but now we are hanging out for the deluge to water in all of our hard work. Hard to believe, mid May, but we already have over 300 tomatoes in the ground, mulched, staked and caged! Today’s harvest will clear out a couple of beds in our high tunnels and this very afternoon we will be setting peppers and eggplant in the salad turnips’ wake. Transition, timely transition, is what makes a CSA farm flow and we are always working to perfect those shifts.
We have had a short term WWOOFer here for the past month. (WWOOF or willing workers on organic farms is a world wide organization that pairs organic farms with folks wanting to travel and learn about sustainable farming practices. WWOOFers tend to be shorter term than apprentices often using farms in certain areas as hubs for exploration) Colleen, a California native, began her 6 month long personal search for a farming home in the South East here at Hill and Hollow. We worked and schemed with her for these past 4 weeks and are very sorry to see her depart this weekend. It was super fun to have someone here who knew her plants, worked hard and enjoyed all we had to offer.
I look out now at the lightning bugs doing their evening show. William is fast asleep and there is still a van to load and a long list of preparations for market tomorrow. I best hit print and be done here. I hope you all enjoy these spring greens as much as I do, it is just what our bellies crave on these hot days.
week two in your basket:
roots or leaves
Salad Turnip Salad
8- 10 medium sized salad turnips
1 – 2 tsp. Fresh lemon juice (how about hill and hollow’s own meyer lemons? Oh yeah!)
olive oil for drizzling
Salt and Freshly ground black pepper
Trim stem end and any scraggly roots off the turnips.
Scrub turnips clean. Slice turnips very thinly, ideally with a mandoline, but a sharp paring knife will work as well. Get the slices as thin as you can. Put sliced turnips in a medium bowl and toss with the lemon juice. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and a twist of freshly ground black pepper.
The Best Spinach Salad http://www.kristinschell.com/
4-6 cups fresh spinach
1⁄4 cup toasted pine nuts
2 tbs fresh lemon juice (again how about those hill and hollow lemons?)
4 – 5 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1⁄2 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt & pepper to taste
Squeeze the lemon into the bottom of a large serving bowl. Add olive oil and whisk until emulsified. Taste and add more lemon or olive oil to taste. Add salt and pepper. Gently tear spinach and add to the bowl. Top with toasted pine nuts and grated parmesan cheese. Toss and serve.