Dena’s Tips 7-24-13

La Montanita Coop helped us find organic peaches through the Arizona Patagonia Cooperative. We hope for more next week. 

The peaches will pair nicely with the rhubarb in a pie or crisp. You can also use the rhubarb for a sweet hot sauce with the Bulgarian Carrot peppers. Beware of these babies – they are hot. They are named carrot peppers because they turn a beautiful orange yellow when fully ripe. You can cut into pieces, dry them and then grind them in a coffee grinder and use in the powdered form. Farmer/chef Adam recommends using them with the cucumbers and scallions in a salsa. (My tomato plants from Steve and Adam have been giving me ripe tomatoes for about a week!) If your tomatoes are also ripe, add some to the salsa.

Last week’s pink teardrop shallots are uncured – they will cure on their own and the tops will dry and fall off. These are an elegant treat – I’ve been trying to get ahold of some for you for a couple of years. Obviously a member of the onion family, mince them finely. They are mildly flavored. Adam minces them with garlic and parsley and uses that mix as a base for salad dressing. They are a great pairing with mild summer squash; use in soups, omelets, pizzas, etc.

The big beautiful heads of lettuce are from Red Mountain Farm in Abiquiu. The crisp juicy hakura turnipsfrom Gemini Farm are a great addition to salad. Be sure to cook up the nutritious organic beet greens from Synergia Ranch.

And the fennel! This is another special treat. Member/chef Blythe likes to cut off the greens, slice the head in halves the thin way, brush with olive oil and grill. She also recommends using it as a base for salad dressing , and lastly, roasting pieces in the oven with other chopped roots. Fennel goes with all things Italian – add to antipasto, spaghetti sauce, pizza, etc. Here is a link to a recipe for a saladhttp://allrecipes.com/recipe/orange-and-fennel-salad/detail.aspx

And another to a soup recipe http://allrecipes.com/recipe/fennel-soup-ii/detail.aspx Just simmer till veggies are tender if you don’t have a pressure cooker. And lastly, a simple roasted fennel recipe from the beautiful Giada http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/roasted-fennel-with-parmesan-recipe/index.html
You can use the fennel fronds as a sweet accent to salads and soups – spread to dry and use them for a flavor boost throughout the year.

My son and I are getting together this weekend to celebrate our birthdays and we will be firing up the bar-b-q with fig wood from our old friend David at La Luz vineyards and grilling up fennel, lettuce, scallions and some squash from last week. I will use some of the carrot peppers in a barbeque sauce. Smokin’!

Have fun on your patio!
Dena
470-1969

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