Onions and beets are back this week, and we’re giving out the very last of our carrots! I’m sad to see them go, but it will also be nice not to have to clean and sort them anymore. . .
Pete’s Greens didn’t have any kale or chard or lettuce available this week, but they did have lots of baby napa cabbage, so we’re offering that. Napa cabbage is milder and more tender than regular cabbage, and is great stir-fried. The baby heads are sweet and crunchy and really tasty. If you don’t use it for the wonderful stir-fry recipe below, it’s also great chopped and tossed with shredded carrots and a simple vinaigrette and maybe a little fresh dill or mint.
This Week’s Produce
Approx. 2 baby napa cabbages (Pete’s Greens) ($5)
Our own frozen blueberries ($4)
2+ lbs. parsnip and carrot mix (parsnips from Jericho Settler’s Farm) ($5)
5 lbs. russet potatoes ($3.5)
3 lbs. sweet potatoes ($3.5)
2 lbs. beets ($5)
2.5 lbs. Canadian onions ($3)
Total retail value: $29
Tuesday, February 12 is the last pick-up day for the winter CSA. We have home-made blueberry jam to give out, and we’re planning on giving everyone a 5 lb. bag of Sunrise Orchard Macintosh apples. Everyone also will get 8 lbs. of potatoes and some onions. We’ll try to get something green from Pete’s, as well as some carrots and either celeriac or parsnips from Jericho Settler’s Farm. If you want to send me a quick e-mail letting me know which of these veggies you prefer, that would be great. Just put “celeriac” or “parsnips” in the subject line and I’ll go with whatever more people want. You can also share your feelings about one more week of beets; if enough people need a break I will probably make them optional for week 8.
Like frozen strawberries, frozen blueberries are excellent in smoothies. They make a great sauce, and you can toss them into muffin or cake batter. My favorite way to use them, though, is to add them to pancake batter. There is really nothing better than hot blueberry pancakes with Vermont maple syrup on a cold January morning. Frozen berries are prefect for pancakes; you can just mix them (still frozen) into the batter or sprinkle them on top of the uncooked pancakes in the pan. Because the berries were frozen individually, you should be able to break them up pretty easily once you open the bag and break the vacuum seal.
Here’s a link to a summer CSA newsletter with a blueberry pancake recipe: https://paulmazzascsa.com/?s=blueberry+pancakes
This could be the last week for the sweet potatoes; it depends how they did in the cold, and how many we have to compost. If you’re like me, you’ve probably been eating a lot of roasted sweet potatoes, sweet potato fries, and sweet potato soup. Here are some recipes for new ideas like fritters, pilaf, and sweet potato casserole:
The baby napa is from Pete’s Greens in Craftsbury. It was harvested right after Thanksgiving and kept in cold storage. Here’s a recipe for a napa stir-fry with pork from epicurious.com:
(This would also be great with thinly sliced or even grated carrots)
Stir-Fried Pork with Napa Cabbage
- 1 (1-lb) pork tenderloin
- 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 4 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar (not seasoned)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons water
- 2 lb. Napa cabbage, quartered lengthwise, cored, and cut crosswise into 1 1/2-inch pieces (10 cups)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
- 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves
Trim off and discard any silver skin from pork (do not trim fat). Cut pork across grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices, then toss with 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 2 teaspoons cornstarch, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a bowl.
Stir together vinegar, salt, remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce, and remaining 1/2 tablespoon sugar in a small bowl.
Stir together water and remaining 2 teaspoons cornstarch in a cup.
Rinse cabbage in a large colander. Tap colander lightly, then transfer cabbage to a large bowl with water still clinging to leaves.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until hot but not smoking, then add pork in 1 layer as quickly as possible. Cook, undisturbed, until pork begins to brown, about 3 minutes, then turn over and cook, undisturbed, until browned but still pink in center, about 1 minute more. Transfer pork and any juices to a plate. Do not clean skillet.
Heat remaining tablespoon oil in skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then stir-fry garlic and ginger 30 seconds. Add half of cabbage and stir-fry over high heat until cabbage is wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in remaining cabbage (skillet will be very full), along with any water in bowl, and soy sauce mixture, then cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until all of cabbage is tender, 4 to 5 minutes.
Add pork, along with any juices accumulated on plate, and bring to a boil. Stir cornstarch mixture, then pour into skillet and boil, stirring, until sauce is slightly thickened, about 1 minute. Season with salt, then serve sprinkled with cilantro.