kale Tag

Pesto is a great way to combine some of the greens we get in our shares each week.  Traditional pesto uses basil, but the recipe this week features kale combined with garlic scapes and scallions.  This pesto can be used on pasta, grilled cheese, panini sandwiches or wraps, pizza, omelets, and so much more.  This recipe also freezes well.

Kale Pesto

Ingredients:
6 cups kale (chopped, packed)
1/3 cup garlic scapes, chopped (about 5 scapes)
¼ cup scallions, chopped
½ cup nuts (cashews, walnuts, or pistachios)*
1 lemon juiced (about 3-4 Tbsp juice)
1 tsp lemon zest
1 ½ tsp sea salt
½ cup parmesan cheese **
1 cup olive oil

  • To prepare kale: wash and dry. Remove stems and coarsely chop.
  • Place half of the kale into a food processor. Pulse to finely chop.
  • Add remaining kale, garlic scapes, and scallions to food processor. Process until all ingredients are finely chopped and well combined.
  • Add nuts, lemon juice, lemon zest, sea salt, and parmesan cheese to food processor. Pulse to combine all ingredients.
  • Scrape down the sides and pulse again.
  • With food processor on low, slowly drizzle in the olive oil.
  • Process pesto until smooth.
  • Add additional olive oil if you want the pesto to be thinner.
  • Store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to a week.
  • To preserve for later- place pesto in ice cube trays, freeze overnight. Remove cubes from tray and store in freezer bag.

 

*If using salted pistachios, do not add sea salt.  Taste the pesto at the end and add sea salt to taste.
**For a vegan or dairy free option, substitute with vegan parmesan or nutritional yeast.

 

Recipe and photos by Stephanie Borzio.  Stephanie is a mom of three active boys and is an autoimmune warrior.  After battling her own health for several years, Stephanie found healing through food and lifestyle changes, including joining Blooming Glen Farm CSA of which she is a long time member.  She is a Board Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach who is passionate about sharing healthy living tips and real food recipes.  Instagram and Facebook: Tru You Essentials; Website: www.truyouessentials.com

With the weather getting warmer it seemed the perfect time to cook some simple food that can be good on its own, be packed for a veg heavy picnic, or work as the anchor for food off the grill.

Dandelion & Kale Caesar
This salad is perfect for packing because the hearty greens actually improve after being dressed, becoming more supple and absorbing the dressing. For this reason we make the tonnato creamier than regular caesar dressing. (*Tonnato is an Italian condiment often made with tuna, anchovies, olive oil, and mayonnaise or egg.)

Ingredients
1/2 bunch kale, cut into quarter inch ribbons, bottom stems removed
1 bunch dandelion, cut every two inches, bottom stems removed
1 6oz can of tuna, drained
1 yolk
1 oz white wine vinegar
.5 oz grated pecorino cheese, with more to garnish
1 tablespoon water
1 garlic clove
3 oz olive oil
salt and pepper
anchovy filets
crusty bread to serve

Place the yolk, grated cheese, vinegar, water, garlic, and half the tuna in a blender. Blend on medium speed until smooth, then stream the oil in. Season with salt and pepper. Place the greens and remaining tuna in a bowl, and dress well, seasoning aggressively with black pepper and salt. Place a piece of well toasted crusty bread on each plate or container you are using and place the dressed salad on top of it. Sprinkle some extra cheese and place over a few anchovy filets.

Genovese Pasta Salad

In Genoa, where basil pesto comes from, they enjoy their pasta with beans and potato. It’s delicious, but rather than hot, it makes a great salad (even better when the first cherry tomatoes come). Just like the Genovese, you can cook everything in one pot.

Ingredients
8 oz Orecchiette, or your favorite short pasta
1 bunch basil
1/4 bunch parsley
1 bunch garlic scapes, ends and flower heads trimmed
1 oz grated pecorino
1 clove garlic, crushed
1.5 oz sunflower seeds
4 oz olive oil
4 small potatoes, quartered
1/2 quart green or wax beans, trimmed
1/2 lemon

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and salt aggressively. Add the pasta and cook according to the directions on the label. With 8 minutes to go, add the potato. With 1 minute to go, add the beans. Drain well and dress the pasta and vegetables in a little olive oil to prevent sticking. Heat a cast iron pan to smoking and place the scapes in. Add a shot of oil and let them char one minute, resist the temptation to move them, then turn, and let char another minute. Remove to a board, and let cool, then chop finely. Add the scapes, herbs, garlic, cheese, and seeds to a food processor. Blend thoroughly, then stream in the oil. Season with salt and dress the pasta and vegetables with it. Squeeze the lemon through and dress as soon as possible to eating.

Grilled Cucumber and Fennel, tahini dressing

Grilling cucumber brings out the vegetale notes, and makes it more nuanced, and somehow juicy, and the fennel adds good sweetness. Keeping the vegetables in large pieces helps them hold up.

Ingredients
1 cucumber, peeled
2 fennel bulbs
1 clove garlic, grated
2 Tbs. tahini
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 bunch of dill, chopped fine
2 Tbs. water
1 teaspoon smoked paprika, preferably from Coddiwomple Canning
2 oz olive oil
Sumac to garnish

In a bowl place the tahini and stream the olive oil in while continuously whisking. Next, add the lemon juice, and then the water until you reach the desired consistency. Add the grated garlic, paprika, and dill and season with salt. Cut off the fennel stalks and reserve for future use. Cut ends off the bulbs, then in half, and remove the out leaves. Cut the core out of the bulb in a ‘V’, leaving enough that the bulb stays intact. Cut the cucumber into quarters lengthwise, then slice away some of the seedy core to make a flat surface. Cut those pieces in half horizontally. Rub the vegetables with olive oil and season with salt. On a very hot grill, place the cucumber seed side down for one or two minutes until charred but still mostly raw. Remove and cool. Place the fennel cut side down on a less hot section, and cook until well grilled, and about half cooked. Remove and cool. Dress a plate with the tahini and place the vegetables over top. Give a liberal sprinkle of sumac and serve.

Minestrone

The first time my aunt went to visit our family in Italy each of our great aunts served her minestrone. More than 40 years later she refuses to eat it. I don’t suffer from the same affliction. Soup like this is restorative, and a great way to use the odds and ends left over from your CSA, plus the trimmings in broth, extra which can always be stored in the fridge for up to one week and frozen for no more than three months. We would serve it with a side of crusty bread or focaccia and a ball of mozzarella or burrata for a perfect lunch.

Ingredients
2 quarts vegetable broth (recipe below)
1 onion, small diced
3 cloves garlic, sliced
2 fennel stalks, sliced
1 squash, diced
1 cup peeled tomato and their juice, lightly crushed
1 cup dried beans, cooked ahead
1 cup kale, finely sliced
6 small potatoes, cut in half
1/4 bunch parsley, chopped
ground chili or chili sauce

In an instant pot, place all the trims from the vegetables for the week. Add a touch of oil and salt and turn on sauté . When you smell a bit of burning, and this is good!, add two quarts of water, seal, and pressure cook for 30 minutes. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, cook the vegetable bits in a heavy bottom pot until fragrant, then add the water and simmer for 70 minutes. Then strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve.

Sweat the onion and garlic on medium heat in some olive oil until translucent. Add a pinch of salt now, and every time you add an ingredient, to build the layers. Next add the fennel, and cook for one minute. Then the squash, potato, and kale, cooking until the kale starts to wilt. Then add the rest of the ingredients, bring to a boil, then cover and simmer on low for 20 minutes. Adjust the seasoning to your liking, and garnish with a splash of oil and some chili.

Palmer Marinelli is the Executive Director of Roughwood Table, an organization that uses heirlooms seed saving to shine a light on local foodways. Originally from Washington Crossing, he has been cooking locally for almost 20 years. 

Rice & Beans PeppersFrom Cuban black beans with yellow rice to Indian ramjah (kidney beans) with basmati rice, rice and beans is a classic, versatile dish that’s found throughout most cultures around the globe. Rice and beans are hearty, inexpensive, and super adaptable, making them a worthwhile addition to anyone’s kitchen repertoire. The key to making this not only a belly-filling meal, but also a nourishing and nutritious one is using whole grains and loading up on veggies. The recipe below uses heart-healthy brown rice, and loads of Blooming Glen Farm-fresh veggies that are packed with vitamins and minerals. The black beans bring plant-based protein, making this a nice rounded and complete meal.

As with many recipes on this blog, the one below is very much open for alterations, depending on your particular tastes, what you have available in your pantry, and what veggies you may need to use up from your share.  I’ve added lots of peppers to this version, since they’re abundant right now. The poblano peppers add a tiny bit of heat, while the frying peppers bring in some sweetness.  Greens are always a good thing to add to your meals; using them here brings in a satisfying chewiness, perfectly complimented by the soft peppers and beans.  Corn would be a nice addition and so would zucchini — feel free to use up whatever vegetables you have on hand!  You can substitute pinto or other beans in place of the black beans. You can even skip the rice and serve the beans over baked or smashed potatoes (leave skins on) or another whole grain. Experiment and have fun 🙂

Recipe note: I make rice and beans by first getting the rice going in a rice cooker, then moving on to the prep and cooking of the beans.  In most cases, by the time the beans are done, so is the rice.

Rice & Beans

Rice & Beans

Ingredients
2 teaspoons grapeseed oil
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped (~1 cup)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
4 poblano peppers, seeded and chopped (~1 cup)
4 sweet peppers, seeded and chopped (~1 cup)
1+ jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped (optional)
1+ cup kale, chopped fine
2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped (~2 cups)
2 15-oz cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1+ cup broth (No-Chicken Broth is good here)
2 teaspoons maple syrup
3 cups hot cooked brown rice*
Fresh cilantro (optional)
* I prepare rice for this recipe with broth, rather than water.

Method
Heat oil in a large skillet. Add onion and cook for a minute or two, until they begin to soften. Add garlic and spices, cook for one minute more. Add peppers. greens, and tomatoes, stir well, and cook until veggies are tender, about 8-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, mash 1/2-cup of the beans.

Add mashed beans, whole beans, broth, and maple syrup to the skillet. Turn up heat and bring to boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Uncover and simmer until reduced to desired thick consistency, about 5-10 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve over rice, topped with cilantro.

Post and photos by Mikaela D. Martin: Blooming Glen CSA member since 2005, board-certified health counselor, and co-founder of Guidance for Growing, an integrative wellness practice in Souderton. Read more about healthy eating and living on her site, http://guidanceforgrowing.com!

sweet potatoesIt’s hard to find a person who can’t appreciate sweet potatoes. They’re often something I recommend to clients who need to add a little more color into their diets — both literally and figuratively — because their sweet flavor, beautiful color and ease of preparation make them a relatively safe new veggie to try.  I’ve found that sweet potatoes, specifically fresh ones, have the ability to impress even the most fastidious of palates 🙂

Nutritionally speaking, sweet potatoes are most noted for providing beta carotene, which helps increase the cancer-fighting antioxidant, vitamin A in our blood. They also provide a healthy shot of fiber, vitamin C and manganese, in a low calorie, low fat, low cholesterol package.  As is the case with many fruits and vegetables, it’s important to eat the skin since that’s where many of its nutritional benefits are stored.

Unfortunately, we have a tendency to add far too many sweeteners in sweet potato recipes — the most classic example being, of course, the marshmallow-topped Thanksgiving sweet potato casserole! There’s nothing wrong with adding a small drizzle of maple syrup to sweet potatoes, but having these potatoes fresh in our CSA shares each week offer a great opportunity to experiment a bit and try them prepared different ways. We can simply bake them and top with a small dollop of butter, or mash them adding a sprinkle orange zest and cinnamon. They also make a good addition to soups and chilis, as seen in the chili recipe below. This chili pairs the sweet potato with savory and smokey spices, and boosts nutrition with heart-healthy black beans and one one of my all-time favorite superfoods, kale. An added bonus: In total, it uses five veggies (potatoes, kale, onion, peppers, tomatoes) from our share!

Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

sweet potato and black bean chili

Ingredients
2 small onions, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 tbsp chili powder
1-1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
2 cups chopped kale
1 cup sweet peppers, diced
3 – 4 cups sweet potatoes, scrubbed clean and diced.  Leave the skin on, but cut out any gnarly spots.
2 15-ounce cans black beans
1 24-ounce can diced tomatoes or equal amount of fresh diced tomatoes
1 cup vegetable broth
salt and pepper

Method
In a large, heavy-bottomed pot (I used a Dutch oven), sauté onion and garlic with a sprinkle of salt over medium-high heat for a couple minutes until onion begins to soften.  Mix in spices and cook for another minute. Add potato, kale and peppers and a splash of the broth and stir well.  Cover and cook for ~5 minutes until veggies begin to soften.  Add tomatoes, beans and broth, stir well and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Salt and pepper to taste, serve with vegan (or dairy) sour cream and fresh cilantro.

Post sources: Nutrition Data

Post and photos by Mikaela D. Martin: Blooming Glen CSA member since 2005, board-certified health counselor, and co-founder of Guidance for Growing, an integrative wellness practice in Souderton. Read more about healthy eating and living on her site, http://guidanceforgrowing.com!

Garlic scapes are the flower shoots that grow from the hard-neck varieties of garlic grown here on the farm. By plucking them from the plant, we encourage the bulbs to grow fat in the ground and simultaneously get yet another way to enjoy garlicky goodness.

Don’t be overwhelmed by the mass of these curlicues you’ve acquired in the last two weeks. Garlic scapes are wonderfully versatile. In any recipe that calls for garlic, you can replace one clove for about one scape. Because they are milder than cloves, garlic scapes can also be eaten more like a side dish than a seasoning. Just chop several into 2-inch segments and sauté on high heat with a bit of oil until they are tender and a bit caramelized.

I use garlic scape and kale pesto in this recipe to make a delicious filling for chickpea flour crepes. It may look and sound fancy, but it was a synch to whip up (I did it in about 10 minutes over lunch the other day). Chickpea flour is now widely available as a gluten-free substitute for wheat flour (I think I even found it in the local Landis). If you can’t find it or don’t have it, the recipe should work just fine with whole-wheat flour.

Use the leftovers of this pungent pesto to add flavor to soup or steamed veggies, toss with pasta, or garnish a rich piece of grilled meat.

Chickpea Flour Crepes with Savory Sautéed Veggies

Heat a small amount of oil or butter in a non-stick or cast iron pan. When oil is hot, add 1 cup sliced summer squash. When squash is tender, add 1 cup chopped kale, Swiss chard, or beet greens. Cook until greens are just wilted. Toss veggies with 2 tablespoons garlic scape pesto.

Whisk together one egg, ½ cup chickpea flour, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Slowly whisk in warm water until the batter becomes thin and pourable (thinner than pancake batter).

Ladle a small amount of the batter onto a hot, non-stick griddle or pan. Using the back of the ladle, spread the batter into a thin layer about the size of a tortilla. Carefully flip the crepe with a large spatula when the top starts to form bubbles and the bottom is golden brown. Repeat with the rest of the batter.

Spoon some vegetable mixture in the center of a crepe, sprinkle with some crumbled goat or feta cheese, and fold crepe over into a large taco shape.

Garlic Scape and Kale Pesto

In a food processor combine:

4-5 garlic scapes, chopped
½ cup kale, chopped
5 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons raw pumpkin or sunflower seeds (*pesto hint: you can replace pine nuts with sunflower seeds in almost any pesto recipe for a nearly identical taste at a much more affordable price)
juice of 1 small lemon
pinch of salt

Process until garlic and kale are minced and ingredients are well blended together. Pesto can be stored in the fridge for about a week.

Text and photography by Kate Darlington – Blooming Glen Farm second year intern, Colorado native, and food lover. 

Lemon & Leek Kale SaladKale shares similar health benefits with its friend, Swiss chard. In addition to being a cancer-fighting and heart health-promoting superhero (thanks to all those antioxidants), kale’s omega-3 and enormous vitamin K content make it a great tool to fight against the inflammation that’s linked to so many chronic health conditions.

My favorite benefit of kale though, is its detoxification abilities. Kale’s glucosinolates make isothiscyanates, which studies have shown assist our cell’s detox activities. The nutrition and compounds in kale assist in eliminating the toxic molecules in our body caused simply from the hazards of daily living; pollution, medication, processed food chemicals, etc.  We all could benefit from a little cleansing, right? 🙂

Kale is most often eaten cooked, but there are health benefits to eating our foods raw. The recipe below uses the acidity in fresh lemon juice to help “cook” the kale, leaving it a nice, soft and chewy texture.

Lemon & Leek Kale Salad

Lemon & Leek Kale Salad

Add dressing ingredients in a large bowl, stir until combined:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon tamari sauce
Juice and zest of one lemon
1/2 teaspoon of honey (use agave for vegan version)
salt and pepper to taste

Add to bowl:
1 bunch of kale (~20 leaves), stems removed, cut into bite-sized chunks or strips.
1 leek, white part sliced in half lengthwise and then into thin half-moons.

Stir into the dressing to well coat. A great method is to use your hands and “massage” the leaves with the dressing. Allow to marinate in fridge until ready to eat (ideally 4-8 hours, but it’ll be tasty after even just 30 minutes).

Stir in 1/4 cup seeds and/or chopped nuts (sesame and pumpkin seeds or slivered almonds are a great choice) right before serving.

Post and photo by Mikaela D. Martin: Blooming Glen CSA member since 2005, board-certified health counselor, and co-founder and -owner of Guidance for Growing, an integrative wellness practice in Souderton. Read more about healthy eating and living on her site, http://guidanceforgrowing.com!

Minestrone means “big soup” in Italian: a big soup of many vegetables. A tasty soffritto (a base of aromatic vegetables) made of celery, onion and herbs gives this soup a rich base and fall favorites like butternut squash and kale make it healthy and hearty. Traditionally, either white beans or pasta are thrown in at the end. In this version I decided to use both to make the soup a complete meal-in-a-bowl! As the season progresses you can also make a “winter” version of this using turnips, potatoes and cabbage in place of the squash and kale.

This recipe was an adaptation of Alice Water’s recipe from her book, The Art of Simple Food.


Fall Minestrone

If you are planning on making this with beans, I first suggest soaking 1 cup dried cannellini beans in plenty of water (beans will swell) overnight so they cook quickly and retain a nice texture.

The next day when you are ready to make your soup…

-Strain beans and place in large pot with fresh water and bring to a boil. Cook until tender but not mushy. About 15-20 minutes. Strain cooked beans but keep the liquid for later.

-Heat 1/4 cup of olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat and add 1 large onion, finely chopped and 3 stalks of celery, chopped. Saute until a rich golden brown color.

-Throw into soffritto:
1 bunch of kale or chard, roughly chopped
1 leek, diced
5 sprigs of thyme
1 bay leaf
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons of salt

-Cook for 5 more minutes until kale is wilted a bit

-Add 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Turn to medium-low heat and cook everything for 15 minutes with the lid on.

-Add 2 cups of butternut squash (about 1 small squash or 1/2 a large one) that has been peeled and chopped into 1/4 inch cubes. Cook for 15 more minutes. Taste for salt and add more if necessary.

-Add the cooked beans along with 2 cups of the bean cooking liquid and 1 cup of dried pasta (optional). Cook for 8 more minutes until pasta is tender. If  soup is too thick, add more bean cooking liquid. Remove the bay leaf.

-Serve in bowls, each garnished with some extra-virgin olive oil and grated Parmesan cheese.

Recipe and photos by Jana Smart- Blooming Glen Farm employee and frequent creator of creative recipes using farm fresh seasonal ingredients. Check out more of her recipes on her food blog http://www.agrarianeats.blogspot.com/