March 16, 2021

 

What’s in this Week’s VEGGIE BOX: Chard, Cilantro, Oranges, Lettuce, Grapefruit, Dried Peaches, Leeks

Bread this week: Sourdough Baguette or Puligese-your choice of one

 

Plant Starts for all your home garden needs

 

We do plan to once again sell plant starts, we are getting them ready for you now, we will send out a list of what we hope to have soon, and they will be available to purchase in beginning-mid April.

 

 

NEW TO YOUR DOORSTEP DELIVERY OPTION IN DAVIS

If you would like a to your door delivery, we now have that option at our Davis locations.

It will be $20 per month or $5 per week. Let me know if you are interested and we will put you in contact with the Delivery Company.

 

 

This Week on the Farm

Spring has sprung! Okay maybe officially it's in 5 days, but by the looks of it around here, I would say we are feeling pretty springy. Spring is always very exciting for me, because you can see our whole world come back to life. Trees that could convince us all that they had died, spring back to life, big fat juicy buds begin to pop on the Figs and Mulberries. Flowers start pushing their buds up towards the sun until they unfurl in all of their glorious colors and smells. The apricot and peach orchards have been in full bloom too, and after the petals begin to fall off the trees, you can see a little tiny fuzzy ball that forms just under the flower. In 3 shorts months, those fuzzballs will have developed into delicious fruit. 

My mom has spent the last two and a half months in the greenhouse planting away. We have peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, herbs, and flowers in there getting ready to be transplanted. I feel the most excitement towards farming during this time, when we are filled with anticipation of what's to come. Right now we can look at a flat of tomatoes and think blissfully about how delicious they will all be. The striped heirlooms, the Sungold cherry Tomatoes, the fresh basil too. I can imagine our fields of eggplant and peppers overflowing with big healthy plants, and wading through them hunting for the prize. I think about the perfect fields of crops. Nothing has gone wrong yet, so the future is perfect. Later things like weeds, bugs, heat, water, and human error will come and all will be as it always is. But for this moment, I can dream about my perfect summer, with days that are hot but not smokey, nights that are cool, and rows that are clean and kept. Spring is the most exciting time. 

In addition to the plants bursting out into the world again, the wildlife out here also begins to return to life. This last week's cool weather has most noticeably been exciting for the birds. They are so happy! Constantly chirping, peeping, and humming, providing the sweetest soundtrack for the workday. I have not yet seen any signs of babies to come, but I am sure they will be here soon.  

With daylight savings on Sunday, we now can enjoy the afternoon sun as well. It is just a magical time on the farm. The crew has gone home, and we all tend to continue on working, but now the light can linger, and we can spend a few moments at the end of the day enjoying the light from the porch. 

My Dad always has some curmudgeon-y old farmer comment to add in times like these, his latest being; "spring gives us energy and excitement because that is what we need to survive the amount of work that comes with it" and I cannot say that he is wrong. The spring weeds are quite a force to be reckoned with, some of you may remember my situation last year, but this year we are staying somewhat on top of things. Spring brings sun and rain, which brings one of the bajillion seeds that make up our weed seed bank, which brings all of the people of the farm out to try to pull them out. Over and over. But hey, the birds are chirping, the weather is cool, and the grass is green, how can one even be upset about the seemingly endless task at hand. 

I hope your week is filled with fresh flowers, chirping birds, and the smell of freshly mowed lawns. Have a great week~ Ali

Cilantro Soup

2 bunches cilantro , stems trimmed about 2 inches and washed

2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

2 tsp olive oil

1 cup slivered blanched almonds

2 tbsp unsalted butter

2-Jan small onion , about 1/3 cup

1 small leek , white part only, chopped, about 1 cup

1 garlic clove

2 tbsp all-purpose flour

1/4 cup dry white wine

1 1/2 cups 3.25% milk

1/2 tsp salt

Mexican crema , optional

Bring a medium pot filled halfway with water to a boil. Add cilantro and cook for 1 min. Drain and rinse under cold running water until cool. Squeeze out water, then transfer to a blender.

Add broth to cilantro. Whirl until puréed, about 1 min. Set a sieve over a deep bowl and pour puréed liquid through sieve. Use a ladle to press all liquid through sieve. Discard solids. Rinse out blender. Heat same pot over medium. Add oil, then almonds. Stir constantly until toasted, about 2 min. Transfer to a plate. Melt butter in pot. Add onion, leek and garlic. Cook until onion and leek start to soften, about 3 min. Stir in flour and cook 1 min. Add wine, stirring constantly until absorbed, about 1 min. Gradually whisk in milk until mixture thickens, about 2 min. Pour milk mixture into blender along with almonds and salt. Whirl at least 3 min until finely puréed. Return both almond-milk and cilantro mixtures to pot. Stir until warm. Ladle into bowls and top with dollops of Mexican Crema.

 

Orange Ginger Glazed Chicken With Swiss Chard

Orange Ginger Glazed Chicken:

1.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs (~6 thighs total)

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp. low sugar orange marmalade

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1/2 tsp ground ginger or 1 tsp fresh

3 fresh basil leaves, chopped

2 tsp oil for cooking

Salt and pepper to taste

Swiss Chard:

1 large bunch of Swiss Chard, stems trimmed, leaves cut into inch-wide pieces

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 shallot, chopped

2 tbsp. pine nuts

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large oven-safe skillet or sauté pan, heat oil over medium-high heat. Season chicken thighs with a dash of salt and pepper. Sauté chicken in pan for ~3-4 minutes per side. Pop in the oven to finish cooking (~5-7 minutes).

To prepare the glaze, combine all sauce ingredients (balsamic, orange marmalade, garlic, ginger and basil) in a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for ~10 minutes, until sauce thickens into a glaze.

In the meantime, prepare the Swiss Chard by heating oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, shallot, pine nuts and dash of salt and pepper. Sauté until garlic is fragrant and shallots become translucent, ~2 minutes. Pine nuts should be slightly toasting in this process.

Add Swiss Chard and stir to coat. Cover and cook until tender (stirring occasionally) about 8 minutes.

 

Grapefruit Vinaigrette

1/2 cup fresh squeezed grapefruit juice (about 1 large)

1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

3 1/2 tablespoons honey

1/4 teaspoons onion powder

1/4 teaspoons garlic powder

1 1/2 cups vegetable oil

Combine all ingredients in a mason jar and shake well. Alternately you could blend all ingredients except oil in a blender and then slowly with the blender running, drizzle in oil until combined. Store in fridge. For extra flavor, add in a little zest from the grapefruit as well.

 

Halibut Confit With Leeks, Coriander, and Lemon

1 tablespoon coriander seeds, plus more very coarsely chopped for serving

4 leeks, white and pale-green parts only, halved lengthwise, cut crosswise into 2" pieces

8 sprigs cilantro, cut into 2" pieces, plus leaves for serving

1 cup olive oil

1 lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed

Kosher salt

1 3-pound skinless halibut fillet, halved lengthwise

Preheat oven to 375°F. Coarsely grind 1 tablespoon coriander seeds in a spice mill or with a mortar and pestle. (Alternatively, you can coarsely chop with a knife.) Toss leeks, cilantro sprigs, oil, half of lemon slices, and 2 teaspoons ground coriander in a large roasting pan; season with salt. Roast, tossing occasionally, until leeks are tender and starting to brown, 15-20 minutes. Remove roasting pan from oven and carefully pour infused oil into a large heatproof measuring cup. Reduce oven temperature to 275°F. Season halibut with salt and arrange over leeks in roasting pan. Top with remaining lemon slices and ground coriander and pour infused oil over fish. Roast until halibut is just cooked through and starting to flake, 30-35 minutes. Cut halibut into large pieces and serve with leeks and lemon topped with chopped coriander seeds and cilantro leaves.

 

Dried Peach Cobbler

Sugar Mixture
1 C white sugar
3 Tbsp cornstarch

Fruit Base
1 lbs  Dried Peaches 
sugar mixture
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp lemon juice
¼ C water
pinch of salt

Topping
1 ½ C All Purpose Baking Mix
4 Tbsp of butter, melted
1 C of milk

When ready, preheat oven to 350º

Sugar Mixture In a bowl, combine sugar and cornstarch until well blended and set aside.

Fruit Base: Place peaches in an 8 x 8 square pan. Sprinkle peaches with the ¾ C sugar mixture (save ¼ C for the topping), water, cinnamon, lemon and a pinch of salt mix well with fork, and spread evenly in pan.

Topping: In a large bowl, combine baking mix, melted butter and milk, until it resembles a batter. Spoon over peaches. Sprinkle the remaining ¼ C sugar mixture evenly over the top Spoon ¼ C hot water over the mixture. Bake cobbler for 35-40 minutes, until lightly brown.