2018 CSA Winter March 31st Mint
- Watercress Box
- Collard Greens 10×10
- Salad Mix 10×10
- Dozen Eggs
Fresh mint for this weekend as it marks the last day of our Winter CSA share and the first day of our Spring CSA share, as we formulate our seasonal calendar into 3 month long periods that start in January. Next week marks the beginning of ourfarmer’s market season, which runs from April to December in downtown Charlottesville and south of town at Forrest Lakes (through October). All CSA members receive a 10% discount on purchases made at either of our market stands.
Mint, violets and redbud blossoms are highlighted in photos this week as many will enjoy a mint sauce with lamb this weekend and the violets are blooming here. Redbuds have yet to pop out (budding and opening before the tree’s leaves) but I wanted to remind you of another edible flower that is easily wildcrafted.
And just in case you happen across some violets, consider trying some for a surprising twist. As with gathering any edibles from the wild, be aware to not gather right next to a road substantially travelled to avoid heavy metal accumulation from exhaust.
2018 CSA Winter March 17th Orange Leaves
- Kale 10×10
- Salad Mix 10×10
- Poultry Herb Mix
- Micro Mix
- Orange Leaves
A new idea to add to the menu this week: Orange leaves! My only experience with using a type of citrus leaf in preparing food was with the Thai lime leaf (Makrut) which I like in stir-fry dishes, curries, beverages and to use as a dental application against streptococcus mutans, which I had read about years ago of a traditional use in Thailand. Of course, it serves to reason that other types of citrus leaves are useful and delicious! The most common recipes I found on this topic were for tea, made with either fresh or crushed dried leaves, alone or added to black tea. James Wong at the Guardian blogged about enjoying them in mulled wine and cider. Elsewhere it is mentioned as a wrap for food and marinade in some Mediterranean recipes. There is one recipe idea from Brisbane of a beef and green bean stir-fry with garlic and soy sauce, which I would substitute the Thai lime leaf with the orange leaf. It can be used similarly to bay laurel leaves, leaving whole while adding to simmering foods or rice pot and then removed before serving. But it can also be sprinkled in as thin slivers to your dish, being sure to cook well. For best effect, scissor cut finely across the leaf, ensuring the minimal amount of spine and maximizing the softening of it. You can store your leaves in the fridge to use fresh, pop them into the freezer or dry and crumble them for the tea and spice cabinet. Hope you have fun with this different take on the orange tree! Enjoy
2018 CSA Winter March 10th wind storm
- Beet Tops bunch
- Mix of Citrus
- Salad Mix 10×10
- Baby Arugula box
- Poultry Herb mix
My apologies for missing a post last weekend but as you can see above, the 70 mph sustained gusts in the wind storm kept us busy with crisis management. Last week’s offerings were kale, baby salad mix, papaya, micros, sage, rosemary, poultry herbs, and 2 dozen eggs. First picture, below left, are Calamondin oranges, plus a few Thai limes. Below that, left, are kumquats still on the tree. These are an almost egg-shaped citrus which we usually eat whole, raw, or sliced up to garnish a salad or dish. These have a mild and sweet flavor, in contrast to the Calamondin which are thin skinned and very tart. Those I like to scissor cut broadly over a salad, including the skin, or add to a homemade dressing. These are great for accentuating the cooking of meats, stir-fry, sweet and sours, curries, and deserts, esp. fruit pies. Makes for a great marmalade or syrup for the table. For a quick, on-the-go energizer, try scissor cutting into your cup of tea or your water bottle. The rind will continue to release flavor for a refill. The Thai (or Makrut) limes are larger, have a bumpier look to the thick skin, and have a raised neck where it was attached. Although there is a bit of flesh and juice in the center, it is the skin that is most often used in cooking to impart its flavor to the likes of Pan-Pacific foods by way of a dash of zest. I store mine in the freezer, taking it out to grate a bit and returning for long term storage! Enjoy