Collard Greens Relish

Hello,

If you have run out of time and/or ideas for your collard greens, give this recipe a try. It couldn’t be easier – just chop a few things and throw all ingredients into a saucepan. It takes a while to cook the greens but most of that time is hands-0ff. Plus, sugar and vinegar are great preserving mediums so you can keep this on hand for a while, making it perfect for last minute guests or to bring to a party.

I have only tried this straight so far but I can imagine it would go well with many different dishes. Slathered on cornbread, with crackers and cheese, tossed with rice and beans – anything that needs a sweet and tangy punch of flavor.

Enjoy!

Collard Greens Relish (adapted from here)
makes about 1 cup 

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound collard greens, stems removed and thinly sliced, leaves chopped into 3/4″ pieces
  • 6 medium scallions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded (or half of seeds removed for spicier relish) and minced OR 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup sorghum syrup
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/16 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/16 teaspoon ground clove
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 cups water

Directions:

  • Add all ingredients to a medium saucepan, cover and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until collards are tender, about 40 minutes. Remove lid and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until a small amount of syrupy liquid remains, about 20 minutes longer. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Transfer to an air tight container and store in the refrigerator for 2-4 weeks.

Weekly Farm Notes :: April 27th, 2015

Hello! Hope everyone is having a great start to the week. Below are this week’s farm notes. See you at the market on Wednesday!

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April 22nd Produce

Here are some of the items you may have picked up at market last week:

  • Black Summer Pok Choi: toss this Sesame Pak Choi with Asian noodles or rice and protein and you can have dinner on the table in no time.
  • Red Russian Kale: give this recipe a try for Garlicky Kale Salad with Crispy Chickpeas and use the green garlic in the dressing!
  • Rainbow Swiss Chard: don’t throw away those chard stems! See the recipe below for a little inspiration.
  • Tronchuda Beira Kale: I love fritters and these Potato, Scallion and Kale Cakes look like something I need to make very soon.
  • Butterhead Lettuce: we have grown this variety before called Adrianna. It has grown so strangely this year but is still very tender with a buttery texture. It is not washed because it is so delicate. Try this lettuce with some Red Russian Kale and the Summerfest Asian greens for a delicious salad.
  • Summerfest Komatsuma Asian Greens: wonderful rich flavor for salad, saute or soup.
  • Green Garlic: try this in the garlicky kale salad dressing listed above!

April 29th Produce

Below are some items that you can expect to see this week:

  • Red Dragon Mustard Greens: I thought this nutritional breakdown from Whole Foods was very interesting:
    • The cholesterol-lowering ability of steamed mustard greens is second only to steamed collard greens and steamed kale in a recent study of cruciferous vegetables and their ability to bind bile acids in the digestive tract. When bile acid binding takes place, it is easier for the bile acids to be excreted from the body. Since bile acids are made from cholesterol, the net impact of this bile acid binding is a lowering of the body’s cholesterol level. It’s worth noting that steamed mustard greens (and all steamed forms of the cruciferous vegetables) show much greater bile acid binding ability than raw mustard greens.
  • Garlic Chives: high in Vitamin C also rich in vitamins A & B, iron, calcium, sulfur and magnesium. Good tonic herb to take regularly.

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Recipe :: Chard Stem Relish

Looking for a fun way to use your Swiss chard stems? Here is a great recipe from Steven Satterfield’s Root to Leaf: A Southern Chef Cooks Through the Seasons. I made a batch this past weekend but haven’t used it on anything yet. I might drizzle a little over blue cheese on crackers. Let us know how you use it!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups diced Swiss chard stems
  • 1 cup red wine (I used Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook until stems are tender, 8-10 minutes. Remove stems with slotted spoon and reduce liquid by half. Let cool separately and combine. Store for 4 weeks.

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Events

May 16th: Wildwood Harvest is having an open house from 10am-2pm. I plan on bringing a picnic to enjoy on the farm – hope to see you there!

May 22nd: Crabtree Farms is hosting a “Buying Local on a Budget” class from 6-7:30pm.

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Other News

Have you read Alice O’Dea’s latest article? Check out her latest article on the benefits of eating beans!


Curtido (Salvadorian Sauerkraut)

Hi! This is my first post for Tant Hill Farm so I think an introduction is in order. My name is Laura Robinson and I just recently moved to Chattanooga with my husband and 16 month old son. I am a chef and have worked as a culinary instructor, personal chef and caterer in the past but I am now taking some time off to be home with my son. I will be blogging, creating recipes and helping with social media (follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest!). My passion is creating simple yet flavorful recipes based on local and seasonal food that both feeds the body and the soul.  I hope to help bridge the gap between buying local produce and figuring out what to do with it when you get home. Check out my website if you want more information on me and what I do. Now on to the good stuff!

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Fermented food has clearly moved into the American mainstream. Look up any “2015 Food Trends” list and it is bound to be close to the top of the list. However, it is anything but a fresh concept; humans have been fermenting food and drink for thousands of years. Not only to make food healthier and longer lasting, but also to make it oh so tasty.

I am just getting into home fermentation myself and traditional sauerkraut was my first experiment. This time around, I was looking for something a bit different when I stumbled across curtido, the Salvadorian version of sauerkraut. It is typically made with cabbage, carrots (both of which were in the Deep Winter CSA last week!) and onions and served along side cheese-filled corn tortillas, called pupusas. As much as I would love to make a traditional pupusa to eat along side the curtido when it has finished fermenting, the truth is I have limited time and will most likely stuff it in a grilled cheese (which I think will be equally as good!). I also think it would be great with marinated tempeh or grilled meat.

The following recipe was based on this one but the thing I love most about fermenting is that you really don’t need a recipe. Don’t have carrots? No worries! Don’t like spicy food? Leave out the peppers! I am by no means an expert but there are so many great resources available to learn more: check out anything by Sandor Katz, like Wild Fermentation and The Art of Fermentation, and Cultures for Health. There is also a great Facebook page called Wild Fermentation that has over 36,000 members, and I have found it to be a great resource.

In the end, I hope you use this as a starting point. Experiment and then share the results! We can’t wait to hear how it turns out. Enjoy!

Curtido

Recipe notes: 1) using a food processor or mandoline makes speedy work of slicing the vegetables; 2) you can use many types of salt, the best being those that are unrefined and natural – check out this link for more information; 3) I have found a variety of salt level recommendations – I prefer the one listed below but you need a kitchen scale (I love the Oxo digital scale) – if you don’t have a scale, this source recommends using 1-3 tablespoons of salt per medium head of cabbage (or equivalent of another vegetable).

Ingredients:

  • 2.25 pounds (5 small) cabbage, cored and sliced thin
  • 12.5 ounces (about 16 small) carrots, shredded on the large holes of box grater
  • 1 large onion, peeled and sliced thin
  • 3 large jalapenos, stemmed, seeded, cut lengthwise then sliced into half moons
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons dried red chili flakes
  • Salt: 3 tablespoons of salt per 5 pounds of trimmed and sliced vegetables
  • For brine if needed: 1.5 tablespoons pickling salt plus 4 cups water

Directions:

  • Add cabbage, carrots, onion, jalapenos, oregano and chili flakes to a large mixing bowl. Weigh ingredients to determine how much salt is needed (see recipe note). Add 3 tablespoons of salt for every 5 pounds of vegetables. I had a little over 3 pounds of vegetables so I used a little under 2 tablespoons salt.
  • Massage and pound the vegetables together until they have wilted and released their liquid. The goal of this step is get the vegetables to release enough of their own liquid to cover everything by an inch. You may massage everything for 5 minutes and have enough liquid or you may be at for 30 minutes and they still haven’t released much at all – it all depends on the water content of the vegetable.
  • Before you can determine if you have enough liquid to cover the vegetables, you need to pack them into whatever fermentation vessel you plan to use. There are so many options – this website does a great job of breaking it down. Although it is not ideal (because the mouth of the jar is small), I am using a large glass canning jar (see picture below). Once you have chosen a vessel, you need to start packing it with the vegetable mixture. It is best to do this layer by layer – add a couple scoops of vegetables and pound it down to 1) release as much liquid as possible and 2) remove any air pockets (lacto-fermentation happens in the absence of oxygen and the sauerkraut could spoil around any air pockets). Continue to repeat the action of adding vegetables and pounding them down until all of the sauerkraut is added. Hopefully the vegetables have released enough liquid to cover everything by an inch, but if not, use the brine amount listed in the ingredient section to cover the vegetables.
  • The next important step is to weigh the vegetables down as anything that rises to the surface will mold. Again, there are so many options here. I used a plastic bag, which I stuffed into the top of canning jar, and then filled it with water. Transfer the vessel to a cool, dry place to ferment.
  • Now all you have to do is wait! The amount of time is completely determined by your taste buds – taste it every day or two to see how it is progressing. It might only take 3-5 days for it to get to a place that you like. I plan to let mine go for a couple of weeks, maybe longer. You can even wait a couple of months but I am not sure I have the patience to wait that long!

Raw Curtido Fermenting Curtido