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Posted 6/6/2013 5:17am by Rod Hornbake.

 

Hakurei Turnips are like sweet radishes.  We like to slice them thinly and drizzle with olive oil.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  LOTFOTL farms in Wisconsin has posted a number of recipes for these treats.  

 

Posted 5/30/2013 5:01am by Michael Melillo.

 

Napa Cabbage

This week's CSA box includes Napa Cabbage.  This may not be familiar to every member.  Also known as Chinese Cabbage and has a milder flavor than dutch cabbage.  Here are some ways we like to use this versatile vegetable.

You can use the parts differently

The outer leaves are a bit tougher and are best used in soup.  (Most or all of these may have been removed during harvest and cleaning.  The head above has been cleaned and the outer leaves removed.)

The upper green portion can be sliced crossways and added to a tossed salad.

The crunchy lower portion is great as a stir fry vegetable.

Asian Cole Slaw

This is a great way to use the whole head minus any tough outer leaves.  Slice a head crossways in 1/8-1/4" thicknesses.

Add 1/2 thinly sliced Vidalia onion (or scallions)

Top with dressing and let sit for 15 minutes before serving

1 1/2 TBS vegetable oil

1 1/2 TBS rice vinegar

1 1/2 TBS Spring roll dipping sauce (bottled, in the asian section)

1 tsp Fish sauce

You can substitute for the last 2 ingredients with 1 TBS brown sugar, 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/4 tsp dried red pepper flakes


Vietnamese Chicken Salad Gourmet | August 2008

Adapted from Kia Dickinson

Since emigrating from Vietnam in the 1970s, Kia Dickinson has been generously sharing her incredible recipes with everyone she meets, including food editor Ian Knauer. This colorful mix of moist poached chicken, cabbage, carrots, and fresh herbs tossed with a wild, tongue-searing dressing is the quintessential summer salad—cool, colorful, and very fresh. When preparing this recipe, Dickinson uses the leftover poaching liquid to make rice.

Yield: Makes 8 servings
Active Time: 1 hr 
Total Time: 1 1/2 hrs
For salad:
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
1 tablespoon finely chopped peeled ginger
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh red chiles (preferably Thai or cayenne), or to taste
1 whole chicken (about 3 1/2 pounds)
1 (2-pound) green cabbage
1/2 pound carrots
1 tablespoon sugar

For dressing and topping:
1/3 cup Asian fish sauce
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh red chiles (preferably Thai or cayenne)
2 teaspoon finely chopped peeled ginger
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
5 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2/3 cup coarsely chopped salted roasted peanuts
1/2 cup packed torn basil leaves
1/2 cup packed torn mint leaves

Equipment:
an adjustable-blade slicer

Accompaniments:
lime wedges; thinly sliced fresh red chiles (optional)

Make chicken and vegetables for salad:

Stir together lime juice, garlic, ginger, chiles, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, then rub all over chicken, inside and out. Marinate, covered, at room temperature while cooking vegetables.

Thinly slice cabbage with slicer. Cut carrots into thin matchsticks (1/8 inch) with a knife. Cook vegetables in a large pot of salted boiling water (2 tablespoons salt for 6 quarts water) until crisp-tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a large sieve or colander with a slotted spoon (return water to a boil) and rinse under cold water to stop cooking. Drain well.

Add sugar to boiling water, then add chicken with marinade and cook, covered, 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let chicken stand in cooking liquid, covered, 30 minutes. Carefully transfer chicken with tongs to a cutting board and let stand until cool enough to handle. Coarsely shred meat (and skin if desired), transferring to a large bowl.


Make dressing while chicken cools:

Bring fish sauce and brown sugar to a simmer in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Blend mixture in a blender along with chiles, ginger, and garlic (use caution when blending hot liquids). Stir in lime juice.


Assemble salad: 

Transfer to a large sieve or colander with a slotted spoon (return water to a boil) and rinse under cold water to stop cooking. Drain well.

Add sugar to boiling water, then add chicken with marinade and cook, covered, 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let chicken stand in cooking liquid, covered, 30 minutes. Carefully transfer chicken with tongs to a cutting board and let stand until cool enough to handle. Coarsely shred meat (and skin if desired), transferring to a large bowl.

Make dressing while chicken cools: 
Bring fish sauce and brown sugar to a simmer in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Blend mixture in a blender along with chiles, ginger, and garlic (use caution when blending hot liquids). Stir in lime juice.

Assemble salad: 
Toss vegetables with half of dressing and chicken with remainder. Serve chicken over vegetables and sprinkle with peanuts, basil, and mint. Serve at room temperature or chilled.


Cooks' note:
• Chicken can be marinated up to 1 hour.
• Chicken and vegetables can be cooked 1 day ahead. Chill separately (covered once cool).
• Dressing can be made 1 day ahead and chilled in an airtight container.



Follow this link to more ideas


For those who like to pickle, Napa is the primary ingredient in KIMCHI.  Additional supplies of Napa are available to supplement your box if you want to make up a big batch.  Talk to Michael if you are interested.


Posted 5/30/2013 4:31am by Michael Melillo.

Tuscan Kale

This week's CSA box includes Tuscan Kale.  Here are some ways we like to prepare this treat.

This variety of kale is the preferred one for Italian cooks.  In Tuscany it is referred to as Cavolo Nero (black cabbage) .  Kale is a great source of lutein, vitamins K, A and C as well as significant amounts of manganese, copper, fiber, calcium, iron, the B vitamins and many other elements.

Large leaves have a central rib that is a bit chewy.  Remove the rib using scissors or a sharp knife.  Small leaves are more tender and do not require this work.

As a side dish, steam or sauté the kale.  We like to sauté it in olive oil with garlic and a pinch of red pepper and a little salt.  Especially good served with salmon.

With pasta.  There are endless ways to combine pasta and kale.  Most recipes add garlic and a pinch of red pepper.  Many add white cannellini beans or chick peas.  Here is one of our favorites from Bon Appetite

  •  1 pound Tuscan kale, or other variety (about 2 large bunches), stems trimmed
  •  Kosher salt
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 cup coarse fresh breadcrumbs
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped, divided
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 anchovy fillets packed in oil, drained
  • 1/4 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 pound orecchiette (little ear-shaped pasta)
  • 3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan or Grana Padano

 

Working in batches, cook kale in a large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 4 minutes. Using tongs, transfer to a rimmed baking sheet; let cool. Set aside pot with water. Squeeze out excess liquid from kale; chop leaves and finely chop stems; set aside.

 

Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add breadcrumbs and cook, stirring often, until beginning to brown, about 4 minutes. Add one-third of chopped garlic and cook, stirring often, until breadcrumbs are golden, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and transfer to a paper towel-lined plate; let cool.

 

Heat butter and remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a large heavy pot over medium-low heat. Add anchovies, red pepper flakes, and remaining two-thirds of chopped garlic; cook, mashing anchovies with a spoon, until a paste forms, about 2 minutes. Add reserved kale and 1/2 cup water. Cook, stirring often, until kale is warmed through, about 4 minutes.

 

Season with salt and pepper.

 

Meanwhile, bring reserved kale cooking liquid to a boil; add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking liquid.

 

Add pasta and 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid to kale mixture and stir to coat. Increase heat to medium and continue stirring, adding more cooking liquid as needed, until sauce coats pasta. Mix in Parmesan and 1/2 cup breadcrumbs; toss to combine. Divide pasta among bowls, drizzle with oil, and top with remaining breadcrumbs.

 

 

As an appetizer prepare "Kale Chips"  (from Bon Appetit).

 

Remove the center rib as above.  Preheat oven to 250°F. Toss kale with oil in large bowl (one TBS for a pound of kale). Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Arrange leaves in single layer on large baking sheets. Bake until crisp, about 30 minutes for flat leaves and up to 33 minutes for wrinkled leaves. Transfer leaves to rack to cool.

As a salad

 

Smaller leaves work best.  Cut crossways into 1/8" strips.  Toss with olive oil and lemon juice and salt to taste or top with grated parmesan or other cheese

 

In soup

 

There are lots of great recipes but my favorite is to sauté some onions and garlic in olive oil with a pinch of red pepper.  Add chopped Kale and chicken or vegetable stock.  Cook until tender then add a can of white cannellini beans.  Heat through and correct the seasoning.  Serve drizzled with olive oil, some crusty bread, and red wine.  Pass the grated parmesan if desired.

 

In the Juicer

 

Surprisingly delicious and extraordinarily healthy are numerous combinations of kale, other veggies and fruit in the juicer.  I like to combine kale, carrots and apples.  Yum.

Posted 5/29/2013 8:10pm by Rodney Hornbake.

Hello CSA Members!

Its almost impossible to comprehend but the harvest season for 2013 is upon us! Saturday, June first is opening day at the farm! We encourage you all to come early (3pm) to meet Farmer Mike (if you havent already) and join him for a grand farm tour.  For those of you who have chosen Saturdays as your pick up days, pick up will begin promptly at 4pm and end sharply at 5:30.  An email alert will be sent to each member reminding them of their pick up day and time.  This is all so very exciting for everyone here at the farm.  For months we've put our shoulder to the wheel and put in very long hours week after week and now we look forward with great anticipation to sharing the fruits of our labor with you.  We hope you will all join us for this monumental occasion!

With Great Excitement,

Michael Melillo
Land Steward
New Mercies Farm
203-427-3953

Posted 5/28/2013 4:26am by Michael Melillo.

We made good use of the rainy Memorial Day weekend finishing the boxes for each members CSA share.

The boxes are made of locally grown white pine, milled at Congdon's on Beaver Brook Road just a mile from the farm.  The wood is green and each box will get lighter as the wood dries.

CSA Boxes

Posted 5/26/2013 6:52am by Michael Melillo.

From GreenKitchenStories.com 

Check out our recipe section for the recipe.   See the tab for recipes by hovering your pointer over "What we grow" on the banner at the top of the page

Posted 5/26/2013 6:09am by Michael Melillo.

One of our truly wonderful neighbors alerted us to a colony of pink Lady's Slippers in full bloom along Beaver Brook Road near the farm.  These are hardy native orchids that take 15 years from seed to maturity.  What a treasure!

Posted 5/9/2013 11:46am by Rodney Hornbake.

We are very very pleased to announce that New Mercies Farm will be collaborating with our sister farm The Wooly Pig in Madison, CT this year! The Wooly Pig is a small scale farm which raises poultry and rabbit with the same values and stewardship as New Mercies!  Please visit their website for complete details and be sure to mention that you would like to "pick up your share at New Mercies Farm."

Thank you,

Michael Melillo

Land Steward

New Mercies Farm

203-427-3953

Posted 4/13/2013 6:54pm by Rodney Hornbake.

Hello Local Food Connoisseurs!

New Mercies Farm is looking for a few volunteers to help with the spring planting of Broccoli, Kale, Swiss Chard, Cabbage, Head Lettuce, Onions and LOTS of Potatoes! Sound like FUN? We thought so too! Come and get acquainted with Farmer Mike and the Land owner Rodney Hornbake and the delicious food we hope to be sharing with all of you this season.

When- This Wed Apr17 @2pm until the cows come home

Where- The Farm, 256 Beaver Brook Rd, Lyme

If you are interested in volunteering simply respond to this email with the approximate time we can expect you.

 

Thank You for supporting local agriculture and our farm,

Sincerely,

Michael Melillo

Land Steward

New Mercies Farm

203-427-3953

Posted 3/18/2013 11:19am by Michael Melillo.

Spring is this Wed. officially, and we are raring to go!

On a chilly Sunday Rodney Hornbake, our industrious land owner and I, the land steward, broke ground for the first time since the inception of New Mercies Farm.  Using our newly purchased 853 BCS tractor and a low impact rotary plow we we're able to plow under 1/2 acre of cover crop. Not bad for a days work!


 

Meanwhile in the greenhouse...

Over 6000 seedlings of onions, broccoli, kale, napa cabbage and swiss chard are just as anxious to get their roots firmly rooting in that freshly plowed field!  Planting day is set for the day after Monday. No fooling!!!

We are currently brooding 68 chicks in our heated greenhouse that will be raised on pasture for eggs in the spring.  They are just two weeks old but have already quadrupled in size!