Good Morning!

Bob's Red Mill buckwheat pancakes topped with Farm Share strawberries and blueberries (and peaches and blackberries).  A nice way to start the day!

Antibiotics in Animals Need Limits, F.D.A. Says

I want to pass along this is article from the NY Times that came out today; I think will be of interest to many blog readers.


An excerpt:

The F.D.A. released a policy document stating that agricultural uses of antibiotics should be limited to assuring animal health, and that veterinarians should be involved in the drugs’ uses.

While doing nothing to change the present oversight of antibiotics, the document is the first signal in years that the agency intends to rejoin the battle to crack down on agricultural uses of antibiotics that many infectious disease experts oppose.

And if you haven't watched Food, Inc. yet, watch it soon!

Collard Greens

The collard greens were gorgeous!

And so flavorful!  So, most Southerners think of slow cooked greens when they think of collards.  This is definitely how they are most often cooked, and for a just reason.  They cook slow in a stock that usually consists of ham hock; and the fatty, salty juices of the ham penetrate the often bitter leafy green.  While I have much respect for this method of cooking collards, I try to cook and eat food that is 1) easy (and quick) to prepare, 2) can be made with things readily available in my kitchen (I don't usually have ham hocks sitting around) and 3) is healthy.

So, here is my variation.  It turned out really well, and we ate our collards with smoked chicken my husband pulled off  the smoker that night.

Not-So-Slow-Cooked Collard Greens

4 small cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1 bunch of collard greens, rinsed and chopped (stems removed)
1/2 c. chicken stock* (ours bought frozen from Dave's Fresh Pasta.  We keep in on hand in our freezer for occasions such as this)
3-4 tbs Olive oil

In a large pan or dutch oven, heat olive oil until it begins to smoke.  Add garlic and let cook until brown.  Remove garlic cloves from oil, or if you prefer a stronger garlic flavor, leave the garlic in the oil.

Add chopped collard greens to the olive oil and sauté for 2-3 minutes.  Next add chicken stock, stir, and cover with lid.  Let cook until greens are tender, anywhere from 10-20 minutes.  The longer you cook them, the more they will soak up the flavor from the chicken stock.  Add freshly ground salt and pepper to taste.

* Real homemade chicken stock, not stock bought from a box or can in a grocery store, will add much more flavor to the greens.  If you can't make or find homemade stock, you might want to add a little more to the dish, e.g. sautéed onions, cayenne pepper, or bacon.

Another way to cook collards that I haven't experimented with sounds fantastic!

Brazilian Collard Greens
(from Gourmet)

1 1 /4 lb collard greens, stems and center ribs discarded and leaves halved lengthwise
3 garlic cloves
1 tbs olive oil

Stack half of collard leaves and roll into a cigar shape.  Cut crosswise in very thin strips (1/16 inch wide).  Repeat with remainder.

Mince and mash garlic to a paste with 3/4 tsp salt.  Heat oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat until it shimmers, then cook garlic, stirring, 30 seconds.  Add collards with 1/4 tsp pepper and cook, tossing, until just tender and bright green, 3-4 minutes.

Huevos Rancheros

Mmm mm.  We are big breakfast eaters, and one of our favorite things to do on the weekend is cook up a delicious, healthy (but somewhat indulgent) breakfast.  My husband whipped up some huevos rancheros the other day, and they were fantastic!!

With our Farm Share potatoes, shallots, radishes, and tomatoes, we gladly welcomed Saturday morning and later watched the sad USA World Cup defeat on full, happy stomachs.


Huevos Rancheros
These eggs were served without some of the typical fixings that come with huevos rancheros (corn tortilla, black beans or refried beans, and salsa); but this modification used a lot of Farm Share produce and was spectacular!

My husband sautéed our red potatoes with shallots and red chili peppers (de-seeded).  He then added some sliced radishes to the potatoes.  Two fried eggs were served on top of the bed of potatoes, and the eggs were topped with a "salsa" of sliced grape tomatoes and avocado (for extra punch, mix a pinch or two of cayenne red pepper into the salsa).

In addition to the ingredients we used, black beans, red and green peppers, and onions would be delicious.


6/23 Farm Share Arrival

This week's Farm Share arrival seemed, well, a little lighter than previous boxes.  I suspect the transition from an "East Coast" share to a "Local" share is still working itself out, because I think we usually enjoy a few more produce items than we got this week.  But that's okay!  It's not really all about quantity, but quality, too.  And this box was a good one.

This week we received red leaf lettuce, collard greens, red potatoes, popcorn (!), parsely, local strawberries and grape tomatoes.  Let me tell you what, these collard greens were some of the best I've ever had!

Happy (healthy) eating!

6/16 Farm Share Arrival

A week behind!!

Last week we received a great Farm Share box: beautiful rainbow Swiss chard, radishes, chives, two heads of baby bok choy, Boston lettuce, grape tomatoes, and blueberries.

I don't have pictures of how we used the produce (a testament to that laziness I was talking about earlier); we mostly ate blueberries as-is (so delicious!) and the tomatoes on salads.  The bok choy we sautéed in a stir fry and I used my previous olive and lemon Swiss chard recipe to compliment a steak one night for dinner.  We're still enjoying our chives and radishes, but I have to be honest, I missed the dark leafy lettuce greens we usually get and didn't enjoy the Boston lettuce quite as much.  Good thing we got a great head of red leaf lettuce the next week!

Simple salad and Easter egg radishes

The other week we made a simple salad with baby arugula from our Farm Share.  This arugula was divine!  Peppery, spicy, and so good--no dressing required!

We also had a bunch of Easter egg radishes that we used for a recipe suggested by our Farm Share newsletter.

The recipe was simple: On toasted baguette slices, place thinly sliced radish pieces and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  It was a nice addition to our salad; something a little different.  This would be a great (really simple and quick) appetizer for a dinner party!

Ravioli with Kale and Portabella Mushrooms

The summer months have turned me into a lazy blogger!  I know my posts have been far and few between, and I'll try to be better as the summer progresses.  After a few out of town trips and a couple crazy weeks settling back into town, my husband and I are back on a little bit more of a regular schedule and finally cooking again.

A few weeks ago it was a cold, rainy day in Boston.  "But wait, isn't this June?" you might ask.  It was, in fact.  June 9, to be exact.  However, it felt more like October 9.  Craving something warm and comforting, we picked up ravioli from Dave's Fresh Pasta and cooked up a meal with some Portabella mushrooms and Farm Share kale and grape tomatoes.

Hopefully this will be my last example of use of Farm Share produce in cold-weather dishes for a while!


6/9 Farm Share Arrival

Summer has begun!  We got back in town last week just in time to pick up our most recent Farm Share box.  We got a beautiful box with some wonderful produce, including kale, arugula, easter egg radishes, grape tomatoes, blueberries, green beans, cucumber, and romaine lettuce.

Happy (healthy) eating!