Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What to Expect! (for Thur 10.29.09)

Notes from the Farmer:
  • Please allow your avocado to ripen outside the refrigerator for 1-3 days checking it each day for softness. Make sure that you take advantage of the recipes that Sarah works so diligently each week to provide and send us your as well.
  • The corn this week is definitely that last. Separate the kernels from the cob with a sharp knife and make delicious corn and potato chowder.
And don't forget to visit Heavens Harvest Farm to keep updated about your Fall CSA and any other upcoming notices, events or specials!

(PS: This is Amy and I'm back from my 5-week stint in the UK . . . can't wait for the CSA on Thursday! I'll be updating the blog frequently, so be sure to stay tuned!)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

A French Garlic Soup

This is a wonderful soup that can be made with little work on a work night. The garlic mellows while it simmers and ends up mild and delicious. Best of all it's a creamy and satisfying soup that has NO cream :)

French Garlic Soup

(This recipe was adapted from 'The French Menu Cookbook' by Richard Olney. Originally published in 1970)


(picture courtesy of Heidi Swanson from 'www.101cookbooks.com')

Ingredients (makes 4 cups of soup)

  • 1 quart (4 cups) water
  • 1 bay leaf, fresh bay leaves are more fragrant than dried ones
  • 2 fresh sage leaves
  • 3/4 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • a dozen medium cloves of garlic, smashed peeled, and chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt, preferably grey salt
Binding Pommade
  • 1 whole egg
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 1/2 ounces freshly grated Parmiggiano Reggiano cheese
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more to drizzle at the end
  • day-old crusty bread,(AJ King's walnut bread is phenomenal here!!)


Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan and add the bay leaf, sage, thyme, garlic, and salt. Heat to a gentle boil and simmer for 40 minutes. This infused broth can be done ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator or freezer if time is an issue.

Remove from heat and discard the bay and sage leaves from the garlic broth (or strain if you want, but keep the garlic). Taste and add more salt if needed.

With a fork, whisk the egg, egg yolks, cheese, and pepper together in a bowl until creamy. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil, beating all the time, then add (slowly! slowly!), continuing to whisk, a large ladleful of the broth. This is tempering, has to be done slowly so you don't cook the eggs, yet! (you will in a moment don't worry). If the soup looks curdled, you went too fast.

Stir the contents of the bowl into the garlic broth and whisk it continuously over low-medium heat until it thickens slightly, (your eggs will cook in this process). The desired thickness is a matter of personal taste. The author says to cook it "just long enough to be no longer watery" I prefer the consistency of half-and-half which is a minute or two longer.

Place a handful of torn bread chunks into the bottom of each bowl and pour the soup over the bread. Finish with a drizzle of very good extra-virgin olive oil, garnish with a sage leaf & thyme sprig and serve immediately.

Buon appetito!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Apple Spice Autumn Cupcakes

Here's a wonderful way to eat our CSA apples!

Apple Spice Autumn Cupcakes

(recipe courtesy of Cupcake fun)


Ingredients: makes18-24 standard cupcakes

For cupcakes:

2 eggs

3/4 cup milk

1/3 cup butter melted

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon baking powder

2 cups apples peeled and chopped

For Icing:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

2 packages (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened

8 cups sifted confectioners' sugar (about 2 lbs.)

2 tablespoons milk

1 tablespoon apple cider

1 teaspoon orange zest

For decorating:

Large Red Spice Drops

Large Green Spice Drops

granulated sugar


Preheat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, beat eggs with milk, butter and vanilla. In separate bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon. Add to egg mixture; stir just until moistened, do not over mix. Stir in apples. Pour into prepared pan 1/2 - 2/3 full. Bake 18-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on cooling grid 5 minutes; remove from pan and cool completely.

Prepare icing by creaming butter and cream cheese together in a medium mixer bowl until smooth. Add sugar one cup at a time, cider, zest and milk. Mix well. Beat on high until smooth (only 30 seconds to 1 minute).

Ice cooled cupcakes with smooth frosting by using a spatula.

Make decorative apples with the gumdrops by pressing down in the center of the red spice drops on a surface sprinkled with granulated sugar. To make leaf, use a rolling pin to roll green spice drop flat on a surface sprinkled with granulated sugar. Cut leaf shape out with a knife and insert on top of apple.


Place one gumdrop apple in the the top center of each cupcake. Serve and enjoy.

Bion Appetito!