August 3, 2009

3 Aug

Dear Farm Friends,

First I need to address a few items of business. We are approaching the end of the summer CSA season… three weeks left… but don’t worry, many of your favorite summer items will continue into the fall season.  For those of you on payment plans, you will be receiving statements this week and I will be seeking to collect the remainder of the payments for the summer season over the next few weeks. Since Matthew, our previous Administrative Director used to be in charge of payments, please contact me by email or phone if you have questions about your bill.

Also, if you are planning on signing up for the fall season, you should do so now. The online payment system is not working at this time (sorry), but we can either run your credit card at the Farm Stand or take personal checks. We are doing a significant amount of advertising over the next few weeks (look for our ad in the Santa Barbara Independent and hear our sponsorship on our local NPR station) to increase our CSA membership to 300. Be sure to make a payment to hold your spot. There is no need to fill out a registration form again, just be sure to note your name, size of share, and pick up day. I would hate to fill up with new people and not have our current members be able to continue to the next season. The fall CSA season is from August 25th through November 19th. It costs $260 for the small share and $468 for the large share. Please sign up and as always, contact me with any questions.

One of my favorite weekend activities with my friend Erick is making dinner for our families. Erick is a wonderful friend and cook with a good eye for pairing dishes and precise dicing. We grew up together here in Santa Barbara with both our mom’s in the kitchen making wonderful home cooked meals for us. We have now moved from our previous sous-chef status to head chef. This weekend we made steak with a peppercorn cream sauce, a salad of Fairview produce, D’Angelos walnut rye from the Farm Stand, and curried Fairview corn off the cob. The corn recipe was Erick’s improvisation from a dish he had at Houston’s (http://www.hillstone.com/#/restaurants/houstons/). See below for this recipe and a few more from our adventures in cooking. He likes to say that our produce is so fresh that it is FAIRVIEW FRESH!

– Jen Corey

Sneak Peek:

Small Share:

Strawberries

Lettuce           

Green Beans

Corn

Tomatoes

Shelling Beans

Peppers

Large Share

Shelling beans

Strawberries

Cucumbers

Lettuce

Garlic

Corn

Tomatoes

Green Beans

Peppers

Recipes (from the culinary adventures of Jen and Erick):

Curried Corn with White Beans (from the kitchen of Erick Ribbens)

Ingredients:

  • four ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 4 tbsp butter or olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp curry powder, more or less as desired
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1/2 to 1 can of white beans, washed and drained
  • 1 tbsp minced parsley
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg, more or less as desired
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Heat the butter or olive oil over med-high heat. Add the curry powder; sauté the shallot and corn until corn is fully cooked, 6-8 minutes. Add the beans, parsley, nutmeg, salt and pepper and continue to cook in the pan until beans are heated, just a couple minutes. Serve warm.

Baked Penne with Corn, Zucchini and Basil (from http://www.williams-sonoma.com)

Enriched with two kinds of cheeses, this baked pasta showcases favorite summer vegetables at their seasonal best, including sweet corn, zucchini and fresh tomatoes.

Ingredients:

  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 1/2 lb. penne
  • 6 Tbs. olive oil, plus more as needed
  • Kernels cut from 2 ears of corn
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 8 zucchini, about 2 lb. total, cut into half-moons
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 tomatoes, cored, seeded and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 Tbs. sliced garlic
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tbs. tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
  • 6 oz. mozzarella cheese, grated
  • 2 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 400ºF.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Generously salt the water, add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain the pasta and rinse under cold running water. Set aside.

In a 12-inch nonstick fry pan over medium-high heat, warm 3 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the corn, season with salt and black pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the corn is lightly golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Set aside.

Return the pan to medium-high heat and warm the remaining 3 Tbs. olive oil. Working in batches, add the zucchini, season with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini is tender and golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Add to the bowl with the corn. Repeat with the remaining zucchini, adding more oil to the pan as needed.

Set the pan over medium-low heat. Add the onion, 1 tsp. salt and black pepper, to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, garlic, oregano and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes soften and begin to form a sauce, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until the wine has reduced and the sauce is fairly thick, about 3 minutes more.

Add the pasta, tomato sauce, basil, mozzarella and half of the Parmigiano-Reggiano to the bowl with the vegetables and stir to combine. Transfer to the fry pan and sprinkle the remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano on top. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until golden brown on top, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm. Serves 8. Williams-Sonoma Kitchen.

Creamy Cucumber Salad (from Ina Garten’s Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics)

Serves:

8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 4 hothouse cucumbers, thinly sliced (3 to 4 pounds)
  • 2 small red onions, thinly sliced in half rounds
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 cups (32 ounces) plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh dill
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • Erick and I think this one is good with bell pepper or chunks of tomato.

Directions:

Mix the cucumbers, red onions, and 1 1/2 tablespoons of salt in a bowl. Pour them into a colander and suspend it over a bowl. Wrap the bowl and colander with plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator to drain for at least 4 hours or overnight. Discard the liquid that collects in the bowl.

Pour the yogurt into a sieve lined with a paper towel and suspend it over another bowl. Wrap the bowl and sieve in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. Discard the liquid that collects in the second bowl.

When the cucumbers are ready, roll them up in paper towels or a kitchen towel and press the towel lightly to remove most of the liquid. Place the cucumbers and yogurt in a large bowl with the sour cream, vinegar, dill, 2 teaspoons salt, and the pepper. Toss well and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and serve chilled.

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