Week 23- September 13th/14th

Dinner time…

Sharing dinner with friends and family is simply the best.  In addition to preparing meals for my immediately family all week long, I look for any excuse to invite company to share our mealtime.  Having grown up in a house where everyone was welcome, I am a firm believer that more is merrier.  A couple of close friends and I have begun what we like to call “family dinner”.  We get together once a week with children and spouses to prepare and devour dinner together.  As of late we have taken to giving our dinners a theme.  Everyone makes a dish or two and we alternate hosting the events.  Recent themes have been: tomatoes and basil, a Homemade Life (food memoir mentioned a few weeks ago), and anything grilled.

Try throwing your own pot luck style theme dinner with friends.  A CSA box is a theme all of it’s own!  Once a week is a little ambitious but once a month is downright reasonable and if you send us some photos and your menu we will include it here on our blog.

Last week's Tuesday share.




~ fennel, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ 4 ears bread and butter corn, Beccari’s Farm

~  pint edamame, Nu Way Farm, CF

~ 2# honeycrisp apples, Kistaco Farm

~ green onions, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ heirloom beets or tomatoes or Asian eggplant, Pucker Brush Farm, CNG/Blue Goose Farm, CNG/ Kistaco Farm

~ 1.5# new gold potatoes, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ green and yellow beans, Weeping Willow Farm, CF OR Hostetler’s Farm, CF

~ 1# Roma tomatoes, Clarion River Organics, OG


~ 1.5# heirloom tomatoes, Nu Way Farm, CF or Weeping Willow Farm, CF

~ 1.5# white potatoes, Weeping Willow Farm, CF

~ 3# Jonamac apples, Dawson’s Orchards

~ rosemary, Goose Creek Gardens, CNG

~ 1# Asian eggplant, Sunny Meadow Farm, CF or Blue Goose Farm, CNG

~ sweet pepper medley, Blue Goose Farm, CNG or Crighton’s Farm

~ green kale, Clarion River Organics, OG

~ red kuri squash, Clarion River Organics, OG

OG- Certified Organic                                                              CNG- Certified Natural Grown                                                   CF- Chemical Free


Fennel Orange Muffins

From Asparagus to Zucchini

  • 1 medium seedless orange, peeled
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups grated fennel
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Oil muffin cups (or use those amazing paper liner thingies) Puree orange in blender, then combine wtih eggs, oil, sugar, vanilla and fennel in a bowl.  Sift flour, baking powder and salt, then gently fold into wet ingredients.  Do not over mix.  Spoon into muffin cups; bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Makes 8-12 muffins.


Gratin of red kuri squash

November 05, 2008

Serves 4

Like many varieties of winter squash, red kuri squash (also known as Japanese squash, orange hokkaido, or uchiki kuri squash) offers a promise of nourishing dinners. With its bright orange skin, and small teardrop shape, you’ll easily recognize kuri; inside, the firm flesh has a creamy chestnut-like flavor. Baked, braised, steamed, or pureed, this squash tastes wonderful; serve it as a side dish or use it as a base for soups. For this simple gratin, you don’t need to peel the squash. Roast, steam, or boil it with potatoes, then puree them, and stir in grated zucchini. Add ricotta, parsley, and a flavorful cheese (blue works well), or a milder one (Fontina, which melts nicely). After half an hour, you have a delicious side dish that will make you rejoice over fall’s harvest.

Butter (for the dish)
1 small red kuri squash (a generous 1 pound), seeded and sliced
2 baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 small zucchini, grated  (just skip it if you don’t have one available!)
2/3 cup ricotta
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for the top
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
1/2 cup grated Fontina or crumbled blue cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 tablespoon butter, cut up (for the top)

1. Set the oven at 400 degrees. Butter an 8-inch square baking dish.

2. In a large saucepan fitted with a steamer insert, combine the squash and potatoes. Bring to a boil, cover the pan, and steam over high heat for 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender when pierced with a skewer.

3. Using a food mill or ricer set over a bowl, work the vegetables to form a puree. Or mash them with a potato masher until they are coarsely pureed. Add the zucchini, ricotta, nutmeg, parsley, 1/4 cup of the Fontina or blue cheese, and plenty of salt and pepper.

4. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish. Smooth the top. Add the remaining 1/4 cup cheese, butter, and a sprinkle of nutmeg.

5. Bake for 30 minutes or until the top is golden. Let the dish rest for 5 minutes before serving. Béatrice Peltre


Tuesday member can find out how to prepare their edamame in last week’s post.


Crighton’s Stuffed Peppers

Chris Crighton from Crighton’s Farm was kind enough to share her stuffed pepper recipe with us.  Of course, Chris cooks in bushels! This recipe is a precious and genuine reminder of how different city life is compared to farm life.  Chris and James have 6 children so I’m sure that it didn’t take them all that long to go through a bushel of stuffed peppers.  Use this recipe as a guide to making your own stuffed peppers at home.

Hi Karlin.  Only some guesswork and common sense will break this down into the amounts other people might make.  I only work with bushels!
1 bushel red, green, bicolor bell or elongated sweet Carmen peppers.
about 15 lbs. low fat ground beef (may add pork, veal, or lamb)
1 loaf whole wheat bread broken into half inch pieces
almost 2 pounds brown or white uncooked full time rice
1 peck really ripe tomatoes
about 12 sweet onions chopped small
1 dozen eggs
4 cups old fashioned oatmeal
Remove tops from peppers; clean out insides.  In a really big container (I use a rubbermaid plastic bin or bowl) put in cold meat, bread, all the rice, oatmeal, onions, eggs and chopped tomatoes (skin and all) and dig in with your hands (gloves if you like) and mix and mix.  If it doesn’t get creamy and pasty, add a quart of milk.  Mix and mix,  More milk if needed.
Fill peppers.  Put tops on if you saved them and like the look.  Put the amount that fits into your slow cooker in a package of your choice (zip bag, container with lid, freezer paper).  Freeze immediately.
To cook, place into your slow cooker and add tomato juice or sauce about half way up.  Cook on high at least 8 hours with lid on.  By using the slow cooker, all the juices and flavors meld.
In case you think I forgot the salt, we don’t use salt.  If you do just use what suits your tastebuds along with any other herbs and spices.


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