Our Veggies + Recipes

Artichoke

IMG_7689These little treats are not available for long, and handling baby carciofi is different than preparing full-sized ones. The Italian chefs I know first prepare a bowl of water (1 qt.) with a half lemon or so squeezed into it. Then, trim away outer leaves until reaching the tender, pale green center. Snip the tops, peel around the base and sides until you have a nice, firm-tender, symmetrical nearly-bite-sized nugget, pop it in the water to keep it from oxidizing/discoloring, and move on to the next one. No need to remove the choke, the whole thing is edible. Marinate, sauté or roast – Yum!  Click Here for Artichoke Recipes

 

Arugula

ArugulaSpring greens with a bite! Arugula, a.k.a. “rocket,” is a peppery, tonifying leafy green, great all by itself with a light vinaigrette (lemon juice or white balsamic    vinegar with olive oil, salt and pepper) and shavings of pecorino. Its flavor profile    is similar to watercress, spinach, endive, dandelion greens, or radicchio, so it pairs   nicely with milder salad greens. Toss raw arugula into sandwiches, pasta, pizza,  egg dishes, even sautéd vegetables for extra color, pizazz and sophistication. Click Here for Arugula Recipes

Basil

IMG_7484The herb of gods and goddesses. What scent makes you want to breathe in more deeply, what flavor is so singular yet versatile that it becomes the signature ingredient for everything from Mediterranean caprese to Thai cuisine to nouveau specialty ice creams? Basil is a ripe tomato’s best friend, the perfect finishing touch to bowl of pasta with roasted sweet peppers, the original pesto aphrodisiac and it generally enlivens any vegetable (or fruit for that matter) that ripens in its same harvest window. So—use liberally, early and often! Click Here for Basil Recipes

Beans

IMG_7816There’s just nothing like the snap and crunch of a fresh green bean…even when they’re purple, yellow or spotted as some Wildwood Farm varieties are (use them all the same, even the wonderful, meaty, long and lumpy Romanos). Their skins have a little friction against the tongue, a mildly rasp-like texture, earthy and not unappealing eaten raw. My favorite treatment is to blanch briefly in boiling salted water, shock in icy water, and spin or pat dry. The color’s intensified, the texture smooth and silky, and they’re ready for consumption or further preparation any which way you like. Click Here for Bean Recipes

Beets

IMG_8390Enjoy beets raw – grated into salads, juiced or smoothied – or cook them up as soon as you bring them home (see suggested methods below), to be conveniently used warm or cold in salads, as a simple side veg or appetizer. Remove beet greens with their stems, leaving about 1/2″ stem attached to the beet root, and store in a plastic bag in the fridge. Stems can be chopped fine and tossed into any vegetable sauté or salad; beet greens should be tasted raw, to determine tenderness and flavor. Click Here for Beet Recipes

Bok Choi

IMG_7010Whether using full-size heads or the more tender baby bok choi, this versatile Asian green can be used a myriad of ways. It can be chopped up for a spicy kimchi instead of Napa cabbage; it can be braised, sautéed, or used in vegetable stirfries. With full-sized bok choi, the stems are almost a different animal than the leaves, so their preparation and cooking time varies accordingly. Bok choi stems should be chopped smallish and cooked long enough that the pulpy interior becomes tenderized, almost melty, instead of fibrous. The leaves can be torn, chopped or sliced into strips and will require less time in the pan. Click Here for Bok Choi Recipes

Broccoli

IMG_7308Steam, grill, blanch, roast, stirfry, chop it fine and add it raw to a cabbage slaw… There are 100 ways to eat the little broccoli bunches that will arrive in your share. In past years, the florets have been smaller and the stems longer than conventional store-bought broccoli – don’t overlook the tastiness of the stems! Taste first, then peel if necessary to remove any outer skin that’s too fibrous, and enjoy the sweet crunchiness as crudité, alone or with hummus or other dip, or added to salads or stirfries. Click Here for Broccoli Recipes

Broccoli Rabe

IMG_7195Use the whole bouquet! The spicy leaves, pretty florets and tender stalks of broccoli rabe (also known as raab or rapini) are a springtime treat to be enjoyed as simply as possible: a few green garlic shoots chopped fine, or regular cloves of minced garlic, can be sautéed in olive oil along with a rough chop of rabe, and seasoned with a bit of salt and pepper. Rabe can also be tossed with olive oil, salt and pepper, and thrown onto the grill. Perfect on its own or added to already-cooked grains or pasta. Click Here for Rabe Recipes

Cabbage

IMG_7333One of the many cruciferous vegetables in the family Brassica included in Wildwood Farms’ roster, both red and green cabbage (also Napa and Savoy cabbage varieties) will make repeat appearances in your shares. So many benefits! Crunchier and longer-lasting than lettuce, but as versatile in salads; able to withstand heat, so useful in stirfries or soups; healthful in myriad ways but not least by adding lots of tasty soluble fiber to keep your digestive tract happy. Cabbage is an unsung superstar and there are lots of ways to make it delicious, besides putting a few shreds on top of your fish tacos. Click Here for Cabbage Recipes

Carrots

IMG_7187Depending on the season, you’ll find baby carrots, regular-size carrots, sometimes big huge carrots best for roasting when Fall months come around, and occasionally rainbow carrots – beautiful reds, yellows and oranges all in one bunch. Nobody doesn’t know what to do with a carrot, but we have a few recipes to share if you’re looking for something different. One tool that lends itself particularly well to certain preparations is a spiral peeler, inexpensive online or at specialty kitchen stores. Click here for Carrot Recipes

Cauliflower

IMG_4675Cauliflower makes a surprisingly delicious purée (steam, then use a food processor, perhaps adding a splash of stock) to use as a dip or a side, but my favorite is breaking it into small florets and oven-roasting (toss with a little olive oil, salt and pepper first) until the tips are a bit blackened and the sugars have caramelized – 45 min. or so in a hot oven yields a pan full of intensely sweet morsels. They can also be tossed into a grill basket with neighborly vegetables like peppers, broccoli, onion, etc. – just don’t rush them (if you’re grilling meat as well, depending on the type and cut, the vegetables may well take longer). Click Here for Cauliflower Recipes

Celeriac

Sometimes referred to as celery root (appropriately, since that’s what it is), these little tennis- to softball-sized hairy root balls make up in versatility what they lack in beauty. If roots arrive with leafy green stalks attached, trim them and store separately (use like celery or parsley). Celeriac must be peeled, but then it can be roasted (or otherwise cooked) and shredded into salads, puréed into a soup, combined with other root vegetables and just generally relied upon as an alternative to whatever other winter vegetable you may have grown tired of repeating. Like all root vegetables, they store well. Enjoy their mild celery-like flavor and starchy potato-like texture. Click Here for Celeriac Recipes

Collard Greens

Be not intimidated by these impressive greens! They’re easy, just use them like kale. To remove spine, hold stem end tightly in one hand, take a chef’s knife in the other, and run the blade from base to tip on both sides of the stem. Stack your stemmed leaves, roll them up, and slice crosswise into 1-in. chunks (or narrower if you prefer). Boil, steam or sauté … Smoked meat (hamhock, bacon, pancetta or turkey) cooked with onion, garlic, a bit of liquid (water or stock), salt, pepper, a splash of cider vinegar and some heat (chile pepper, chile flakes or hot sauce) provide all the flavor you need. Click Here for Collard Green Recipes

Cucumbers

cucsThe uncommon thing about Wildwood English cucumbers: they don’t have the bitterness of their conventional store-bought brethren. You generally don’t need to peel them, although if it’s a texture thing, try peeling in alternating ribbons, so some of the skin is left on. A favorite treat: slice them vertically into sticks, slice horizontally into small cubes, and combine with cherry tomatoes sliced in half. Add a little shredded basil, some olive oil, salt and pepper, a splash of vinegar if you wish – though un-acidified is also delicious. Or, pickle them – you don’t have to do the whole canning thing, just add a vinegar brine and refrigerate. Awesome on sandwiches, in salads or by the mouthful! Click Here for Cucumber Recipes

Eggplant

IMG_8462I agree with Nigel Slater: the best way to make friends with eggplant is to use plenty of good, fruity olive oil. Eggplants are divine, but they can’t be eaten raw; they become vehicles for the flavors they travel with. The flavor and texture transformation from firm, spongy and bitter to tender, melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness is gratifying and can be as simple as slicing, oiling, salting and grilling (my favorite), or it can be more involved: caponata, a vegetable tian, ragout, baba ghanoush, eggplant parmesan, or Asian/Thai stirfries. Their beautiful shiny skins and pleasing shapes are beguiling, and you’ll be surprised what you can create with them. Click Here for Eggplant Recipes

Fava Beans

IMG_2430Enjoyment of these delectable early-summer morsels requires an old-fashioned approach: you must earn it. The labor of love repays you with goodness you can’t find from any other legume. Resign yourself to a double shelling: one removes the beans from the pod, and then individual beans are peeled. So worth it! Laurel loves them any and every way; added to a bowl of warm pasta (buttered, or tossed with pesto, or chopped fresh garlic, kale, and basil) is but one path to favalicious divinity. Click Here for Fava Bean Recipes

Fennel

IMG_4651This aromatic bulb lends itself to many culinary possibilities, and the feathery fronds are delicious as well! Use it sliced raw in salads, or bake, sauté, roast, or grill. We find that we enjoy this vegetable more and more every time we prepare it!

Click Here for Fennel Recipes

Garlic

IMG_8520No doubt, odes have been written to garlic – if they haven’t, they should’ve been. Name a single other plant with as much mythology, mysticism, broad adoption across countless culinary and cultural traditions… For that matter, name one with as much flavor packed into such a small nugget! An immune booster, a preservative, a magic talisman, an essential ingredient and the thing that people – whether they know it or not – are probably most commonly referring to when they walk into a warm kitchen, take a deep breath, and reverently utter, “Oh, that smells heavenly!” Use early and often, in every way possible. Click Here for Garlic Recipes

Garlic Scapes

IMG_2304The scape is the garlic’s flower stalk, which, in order to direct most of the plant’s energy toward the maturing bulb, must be trimmed. Score! Scapes are most flavorful fresh, and shouldn’t be overcooked. They can be sliced raw into salads, stirfries, egg dishes, pasta, or anywhere else you would use garlic or scallion; minced and blended with softened butter or cream cheese; added to a toasted cheese sandwich or sautéed on their own as a side dish. They can be grilled, but can be fibrous. Pickling or making scape pesto can extend their usage life.          Click Here for Garlic Scape Recipes

 Green Garlic

IMG_7026This spring treat satisfies our garlic cravings before the full-sized bulbs are ready… Use like regular garlic! It’ll be milder, sweeter, fresher-tasting and more subtle. It looks like a large scallion, sometimes with a bit of bulb. Both the white (or pink-hued) bottoms and most of the tender green stalks can be used. Green garlic complements everything: fish, fowl, veg and eggs. Try briefly warming it, finely chopped, in butter or olive oil, then spread over steaming, roughly mashed potatoes, polenta or risotto. Use raw in dressings, dips, sauté’s or fresh herb salsas. Click Here for Green Garlic Recipes

 Green Onions

IMG_7112The secret weapon that can bring salads and otherwise pedestrian dishes to life, whether you’re chopping and adding them to salsa, mixed greens, potato salad, beans and rice, eggs and bacon, anything Asian or Mexican, or garnishing a bowl of clear broth or cheesy chili. Snip off the little root ends and follow the stalk up to where white becomes pale green, then dark green – preserve as much of the dark green ends as seem fresh, chopping them off where they become wilty or discolored. Kind of a personal preference. They can even go whole on the grill, but not for long! Click Here for Green Onion Recipes

Jerusalem Artichoke

Also known as sunchokes, these irregularly shaped little knobs are packed with nutrients. As humble as they are novel, the starchy little tubers can be peeled if you like (or not), boiled and puréed (perhaps in combination with other root vegetables such as parsnip or celeriac), or added to soup. One chef poaches them tender, then flash fries them for a crispy exterior and creamy interior. You can scrub and slice them, cover with salted water and cook until tender, and mash them like potatoes. Or, thinly slice cooked, cooled chokes into a salad for an artichoke-like flavor in a totally different package. Click Here for Jerusalem Artichoke Recipes

Kale

IMG_7014If Wildwood has a signature offering, this may be it…in multiple varieties, appearing intermittently throughout the entire growing season (weather depending). With its rise from relative obscurity to superfood celebrity, some may feel kale has peaked and become passe…not us. For kale lovers, it’s welcome at every meal: Breakfast smoothie, or a mess of greens with a fried egg? Raw massaged kale salad for lunch? Kale chip appetizers followed by braised kale and caramelized onions with dinner? Truly, this versatile vegetable is super-kale-ifragilisticexpialidocious! Click Here for Kale Recipes

 Kohlrabi

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These tasty orbs are in the genus Brassica, along with the cabbage, broccolini, and kale in your share this week. With a tasty flavor and delightful crunch, they are a novel treat on the table. Typically our go-to with the kohlrabi is to slice into matchstick pieces (after peeling purple skin) and toss with lime and salt for a tasty fresh slaw, but there are many other uses as well. Click here for Kohlrabi Recipes

Leeks

Leeks are amazing. They fill a lovely and absolutely unique flavor and texture niche among relatives like onion, shallot, green onion, spring onion, etc. Grit can hide between the many layers, so clean carefully: Chop off the top greens where they become fibrous or frayed, slice the root ends off, and slice remaining stalk in half vertically, then rinse under running water and pat dry. From here, Bob’s your uncle! Classically paired with potatoes in soup, they’re good for so much more. Finely sliced and sautéed in butter, salted and peppered, they’re a perfect side dish or topping for fish. Roasted, grilled, steamed – experiment and add them to anything. Even try them raw with greens or other veg. Click Here for Leek Recipes

Lettuce

IMG_7170Tender heads of butter lettuce, voluminous blooms of green leaf lettuce, spicy mixes of feathery, spiky salad greens…Wildwood’s lettuce offerings deliver an abundance of variety in texture and flavor, plus superior food value over store-bought. As our frequently consulted Nigel Slater says, “I feel slightly uncomfortable without lettuce in the fridge, in much the same way I do without a lemon or a lump of craggy-edged Parmesan. I wouldn’t feel much of a cook without the wherewithal to make salad.” Click Here for Lettuce Recipes

Mustard Greens

IMG_4775Just about any letter of the alphabet that is a vitamin can be found in these peppery, delightfully bitter cruciferous greens. While a staple in traditional soul food and Indian cookery, those methods can call for long-cooking and boiling, destroying much of the nutrients, flavor and texture. Short cooking (sautéing) is better way to preserving their vibrance. If young and tender, they’re great raw in fresh salads, paired with milder greens. Match mustard greens with bacon, cheddar cheese, corn, cornbread, curry, garlic, ham, hot sauce, lemon, onion, salt pork, and smoked turkey. Click Here for Mustard Green Recipes

Onions

IMG_7663Not just “onions.” Besides the basic red or yellow, you may find petite Cipollinis (great for skewering or pickling), sweet Walla Wallas, the exotic Long Red of Tropea or the good-enough-to-eat-raw on a sandwich Ailsa Craig, a nice big variety named for an island off the coast of Scotland. Chopped raw in salads and salsas, slow-caramelized as a condiment (or as the basis of anything to do with sautéed greens and many other vegetables), minced into 1/3 of the famous mirepoix (onion, carrot, celery) to form the basis of stock, soup, stew, etc. …Onions truly are indispensable! Click Here for Onion Recipes

Parsnips

The root vegetable that looks like carrots or daikon radish, but tastes like something between turnip and rutabaga. Parsnip goes anywhere that carrots, beets, celeriac, sunchokes or any other roots or tubers may go, including potatoes. Scrubbing, slicing (at least in half, or into rounds or evenly-sized sticks) and roasting is the typical preparation, particularly in combination with other roots. Soups, purées and even soufflés can be created with this homely little vegetable with the subtle flavor profile. Click Here for Parsnip Recipes

Peas

There seems to be a certain popularity to fresh mint as a flavor complement to freshly shelled peas. Personally, I’ve never gone that far because to me a fresh pea is a completely self-contained sphere of perfect flavor, the epitome of spring, requiring little in the way of adornment, save perhaps a touch of butter and salt. And that’s only if I can wait long enough to actually cook them, with the briefest steaming or blanching, because they’re also completely delicious raw. An East-coast farmer swore by a time-honored tradition of enjoying the first peas of the season swimming in delicious raw dairy-fresh, creamy-fat milk. Choose your delivery! Click Here for Pea Recipes

Peppers

IMG_8305Sweet Italian peppers with thin skins and elongated, narrower shapes may arrive side-by-side with traditional bell peppers in green, red, gold, orange or purple; chile peppers like Anaheim, Serrano or jalapeno may also grace your CSA share. The beautiful thing is the timing, so that these treasures may often be accompanied by onion, tomatillo, perhaps cilantro or tomato – and if that isn’t salsa in a box, I don’t know what is. Be inclusive and adventurous with your peppers, raw or cooked (sautéing, grilling, stuffing them first and then grilling…) They go with more than you might think, and add subtle or zippy flavor wherever they go. Click Here for Pepper Recipes

Pumpkins

Aside from the two obvious apps – jack-o’-lanterns and pie – pumpkin is appropriate and satisfying in so many ways (note absence of reference to Starbucks spiced latte). Pumpkin loves being combined with other types of winter squash, or used interchangeably in many recipes. A pumpkin may be relieved of its stemmed lid and gutted of its seeds, then stuffed with cubed bread, sausage or bacon, a bit of Gruyere and cream, and roasted whole in the oven. It can be carved into chunks and steamed, combined with lentils into a curry or dal, puréed into a soup, puffed up in a soufflé, or baked into sweet or savory scones. Nothing like the flavor of pumpkin to officially declare, and celebrate, the arrival of fall and winter. Click here for Pumpkin Recipes

Potatoes

IMG_8304You don’t have to be Irish to live on potatoes. They’re the wonder food, the comfort food, the starch that goes with everything, yields to a multitude of preparations, and makes everybody happy–from the kids to the old people. Boil them, steam them, quarter and roast them, mash them, make a salad, make soup or fry them up as latkes, crispy hash browns or – if you’re brave and have a deep frying pan–french fries. The other great thing: they’ll keep a decent amount of time, stored in a cool dark place. Don’t refrigerate them, at least not until they’ve been cooked. Add garlic, green onion, garlic greens, basil – any aromatics will pair well with potatoes. Click here for Potato Recipes

Radish

IMG_7021Best eaten young, raw and crisp, with cold pale butter and a little saucer of sea salt flakes in which to dip them (more about that below). Try them sliced and dropped into yogurt with white wine vinegar, fresh mint or dill, and some salt. They need no pepper. They are in their element in a light lemon juice and olive oil dressing with masses of cilantro and mint leaves. So sayeth the gospel of Nigel Slater. Click Here for Radish Recipes

 

Salad Turnips

IMG_5014The sweet, crunchy, surprising little vegetable that’s something between a radish and a turnip, milder than both and probably a bit more versatile too. They can be braised or sliced into stirfries, but they’re wonderful raw, sliced into salads or eaten alone with a sprinkling of salt or a dip of hummus. They have a slight cabbagey flavor, but don’t let that put you off–embrace a new favorite alternative to the crudité plate! Click Here For Salad Turnip Recipes

Shallot

IMG_8307Nothing quite matches the presence of shallot, making them a comforting staple to have in the pantry. Listen to Nigel Slater’s appreciation: “Refined in flavor and possessing an extraordinary elegance, the shallot has a milder taste than the onion. Its golden skin and the flesh beneath tend to have a pink blush, and it is usually easier to peel. Used in high-level restaurant cooking, as a base for classical French sauces, they’re worth a more down-to-earth treatment too.” Check the Vinaigrette section for a marvelous (and very simple) mustard-shallot salad dressing. Click Here for Shallot Recipes

Spinach

spinachIt came of age in the 70s, when spinach salad, wilted with warm bacon vinaigrette, tossed with hard-boiled egg and sliced mushrooms, became ubiquitous. Nothing wrong with that, but spinach can do so much more. Blended into fresh green drinks, stuffed into chicken ala Florentine, torn into salads, simmered in an Indian saag, or reduced to a steaming, tender lump in a pan of butter and olive oil, to be spritzed with fresh lemon and consumed immediately. Wash and dry carefully, to remove any fine grit, before preparing. Click Here for Spinach Recipes

Summer Squash

IMG_7339Patty-pan, yellow crookneck and green zucchini make up the summer squash parade. Put them on the grill in slices, on skewers or in a basket with companion veggies; spiralize zucchini into “noodles” that can substitute for pasta; shred or slice squash thinly into frittatas, cube them up for ratatouille or stirfry them with whatever else you got. Use them fast so they don’t get pithy or mealy; there’s no shortage of ways to consume squash! Click here for Summer Squash Recipes

Swiss Chard

ChardSimply beholding a bunch of fresh chard, with it deeply veined leaves and sometimes brightly hued stems, makes you feel healthy…and indeed it’s not only gorgeous, but loaded with vitamins, minerals and calcium. You’ll want to preserve all that goodness with a light touch. Think of it as two crops in one: crunchy stalks can be chopped up and used in place of celery in many recipes, while leaves can be enjoyed raw in salads, quickly sautéed, or used in egg dishes as you would similar sturdy leafy greens like spinach, kale, cabbage, or even finely chopped broccoli, kohlrabi greens or collard greens. Click here for Swiss Chard Recipes

Sweet Corn

IMG_0917My grandpa grew sweetcorn in the Willamette Valley and when we visited, he wouldn’t let us pick or shuck the corn until the water was already boiling. The sugars change into starch rapidly after harvest, so use your corn as soon as you get it. It’s great on the grill; there are many opinions as to the best method, but I like removing nearly all the husk but the last innermost leaves, removing the silk and then putting ears on the grill with the leaves protecting them from direct heat. Eaten on the cob with butter and salt is hard to beat, but, cooked or raw, corn is delicious and texturally pleasing when sliced from the ears into salads (especially with green beans and tomatoes), tacos, enchiladas, cornbread, just about anything you like. Click Here for Sweet Corn Recipes

Tatsoi

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Beautiful, dark green tatsoi is often described as the flavor offspring of spinach plus bok choi, and can be used similarly to either, raw in salads or chopped into stirfries. There’s a nice mustardy, cabbagey “bite” and a pleasing shape to their little scoop-like leaves. Click Here for Tatsoi Recipes

 

 

Tomatoes

IMG_7664Try to use them quickly (as if that’s a chore, they’re so delicious). Tomatoes don’t really like refrigeration, but they don’t last long in the heat either. Slicing and adding a little salt, olive oil and basil may be all you need – a splash of vinegar too if you like. For a good Italian, this and a few crusts of toasty bread constitute breakfast. Chop them into salsa cruda; stew them into chili, ragout, or marinara sauce; dry them and preserve them in oil…just don’t let them go to waste. Click Here for Tomato Recipes

Tomatillos

IMG_8238Tomatillos should be stored in a paper bag and will last at least a couple of weeks in the fridge. When ready to use, husk them and rinse the sticky resin off before drying and proceeding with your recipe. Green or purple tomatillos can be used interchangeably. While they can be used raw in salsa, roasting mellows the flavor. “I absolutely love the flavor combination of tomatillos, onion, garlic, and anaheim peppers–all roasted to charred perfection,” says Laurel. Fortunately, all those ingredients tend to ripen simultaneously. Tomatillos add tanginess to other dishes too, and seem to go particularly well with pork. Click Here for Tomatillo Recipes

Winter Squash

IMG_8454Variety within variety – kind of a Wildwood trademark. Just as you won’t be limited to one or two types of onions, the CSA allows you to sample several types of squash: Red Kuri kabocha, Thelma Sanders acorn, Butternut, Delicata and spaghetti squash may be on the menu. There is so much more to do with squash than split it in half and bake it in the oven – not that there’s anything wrong with that! Thai or Indian curries, soups or purées, salads that combines sturdy greens with cubed, steamed squash and nuts or cheese…and let’s not forget fritters, or baked goods like scones and pies.  Click Here for Winter Squash Recipes