Tomato juice for 2017.

IMG_9778 tomato wash
Charlotte, Osha and Maggie wash a gazillion tomatoes.

Tomato harvests are at their peak.  We have more tomatoes than you need/want, so we will bottle some of this week’s tomatoes for next year’s tomato juice.  We picked plum tomatoes for your CSA boxes this week, and will make ripe slicing tomatoes into juice.  Contract Comestibles, a small food processor in East Troy, will process the juice for us.  That is a job beyond us in every sense (time, ability, legality).  Bottling is a great way to use surplus tomatoes at peak season, and we will be glad to have the juice tucked away for next year.  The tomatoes are in very good shape, so we predict a fine batch of juice.

As you probably noticed, we usually pack 4 lb tomatoes per CSA box at peak season.  We settled on that amount based on feedback from you folks.  Shoot us an email if you have any thoughts on the amount.  We are always open to suggestions and I have wondered if 4 lb per week is what everyone wants.   Beth

Extra tomatoes for sale next week?

We offered extra plum tomatoes for sale to Friday sites this week.  We think there will be enough to offer to the Thursday sites next week.  Watch for emails from us mid-week.

Veggie list and veggie notes (Sept. 1/2, 2016, week #16, purple EOW)

Plum tomatoes, 4 lb
Edamame soybeans, 1 bundle
Sweet corn, 5 ears
Green beans, 0.85 lb
Colored frying peppers, ~3
Oranos OR lunchbox peppers
Cucumbers or pickles, ~1 lb
Sweet onion (Walla Walla or Zoey)
Jalapeño chile (HOT), 1
Thai or Italian basil, by site, 1 bunch

Some sites get watermelon.
Some sites get large broccoli.
Some sites get small broccoli + heirloom tomato.
Some sites get a zucchini too.

Next week’s box will probably contain tomatoes, peppers, broccoli, onions, and more.

Plum tomatoes – Plum tomatoes are meaty, with higher solids and lower water content than slicing tomatoes.  They are the best tomato for sauce.  They make a fine salad too.
Edamame soybeans (bundle of green stems with pods attached ) – These edible soybeans are a treat.  Pull the pods from the stem and wash well.  It helps to submerge the pods and rub them together.  Boil in water until the pods have split and the beans are quite tender.  Season with salt and pop the beans out of the pods and into your mouth.  This Japanese specialty is becoming more and more popular in the USA.
Storage:  Remove the pods from the stems promptly and refrigerate.
Sweet corn – This corn is a bit starchy so the best use is to cut the kernels from the cob and add to a recipe.  This is the last corn of the season.
Oranos or lunchbox peppers – Oranos are orange.  Lunchbox peppers are smaller and mixed colors: red, orange, yellow.  Otherwise, these peppers are pretty similar.  Sweet, flavorful, crunchy, they are the perfect size to pack for lunch the first week of school.

IMG_9793 pepperID2
Pepper ID.  Clockwise from left; Italian frying peppers, Oranos, lunchbox peppers. Jalapeño chile (HOT) in the middle.

RECIPES FROM LAUREN

A SAVORY YOGURT + EGG BREAKFAST SALAD SITUATION
Adapted ever so slightly from a recipe by my absolute favorite, Molly Yeh

Takes 20 mintues
Serves 2-4 based on your hunger level

2 cups plain yogurt (Greek yogurt preferred)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon Kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
Fried eggs
1 avocado, diced
1 large cucumber, seeded and diced (or 2 pickles, diced)
3 tomatoes, cored and diced
Handful of Thai basil or Italian basil leaves, roughly chopped
Buttery toast

  1. In a large bowl, combine yogurt, olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper †and stir until smooth.
  2. Spread the yogurt out on shallow bowls or plates. Top with a fried egg or two followed by avocado, cucumber and tomato. Sprinkle with remaining salt and pepper along with roughly chopped basil.
  3. Serve with toast and enjoy!

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CREAMY CORN GRITS WITH CHARRED PEPPERS & ONIONS
Takes 30 minutes, plus additional 30 minutes for bacon
Serves 4-6

2 tablespoons butter
5 ears corn, kernels cut off cob (no need to cook first!)
1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups whole milk
2 cups water
1 cups grits (also known as corn grits, cornmeal or polenta; here’s what I always buy)
3 colored sweet peppers, any
1 sweet onion, peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch rounds
1 tablespoon olive oil
4-8 tablespoons maple syrup
Candied bacon, technically optional but very much recommended (recipe here)

  1. If you plan to make the candied bacon, I’d recommend starting now and then the meal will all be done around the same time.
  2. In a large stock pot or sauce pan, melt butter. Add corn, jalapeno, salt and pepper and cook over medium heat until beginning to soften (about 5 minutes). Add in water and milk. Reduce heat to medium high and wait for mixture to just begin bubbling. Stir once or twice with a whisk while waiting for it to bubble to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom of the pan.
  3. Pour in grits slowly, whisking while you pour them in to create a smooth texture. Reduce heat to a low simmer and continue whisking every couple minutes to keep the mixture from clumping or sticking. When grits look creamy and consistent, they’re ready! They cook very quickly, about 10 minutes. If they cease up while you prepare other parts of your meal, just cook them over low heat and add more milk until they have the desired consistency.
  4. Preheat your grill to high. Place whole peppers directly over burner. Toss onions with olive oil and place these slices directly over burner as well. Flip every two minutes or so and take off the grill once peppers are blackened and onions have grill marks. Peppers with take 6-10 minutes. Onions will take 4-5 minutes.
  5. Roughly chop grilled onions and set to the side. Once cool to the touch, peel skin off peppers, remove seeds and cut into strips. Add to onions in a small bowl.
  6. Add about a half cup of grits to a large bowl, top with onions and peppers followed by candied bacon (if using). Drizzle with a tablespoon or two of maple syrup and enjoy!

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LOCAL THYME RECIPES

Comforting Classics

Broccoli Slaw
Sherry Vinegar Marinated Roasted Peppers
Pizza Margherita
Maque Choux

Outside the Box Recipes

Roasted Broccoli with Marcona Almonds and Smoked Paprika Vinaigrette
Grilled Sirloin Steaks (or portabello mushrooms) with Pepper and Caper Salsa
Salsa “Quemada”
Brown Butter and Corn Pasta

Quick and Easy Meal

Thai  Cucumber, Green Bean and Tomato Salad

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