From the garden this week, February 18, 2021
From the Garden this Week…
Broccoli, Carrots, Green Onions, Kale, Celery Stalks, Lettuce Heads, Rutabaga, Parsley, Oranges and Grapefruit
Coming Soon…Beets and Bok Choy
Using your Produce… by Julie Moreno
This week I wanted to use our parsley for a tabbouleh salad. The traditional middle eastern dish is meant to be a parsley salad first and our parsley is enjoying the cool weather. The problem for us is that a traditional tabbouleh salad uses parsley, tomatoes and cucumbers. In the hot summers of the Central Valley, we can’t easily grow all of these at the same time. So, my answer is to recreate this recipe with winter vegetables, when we do have the parsley. This is also a great place to put an extra rutabaga or any other vegetable. Feel free to make adjustments to the recipe depending on what you like. You can increase or decrease the amounts of vegetables or bulgur, or switch the grain to brown rice, if you are avoiding gluten. Recipes are just guidelines.
Winter Tabbouleh Salad
2-3 carrots, sliced
1 rutabaga, peeled and diced
2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 cup fine bulgur wheat
1 cup water
½ teaspoon salt
1 small garlic clove, minced (optional)
1 green onion, white and green parts sliced
Juice of 1 lemon
1-2 cups chopped parsley
¼ cup chopped fresh mint (if available)
salt, to taste
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Toss the carrots and rutabaga with salt, pepper and 1 tablespoon of oil. Lay the vegetables in a single layer on a parchment lined sheet pan and roast in the oven for 20 minutes. Place the bulgur, water and ½ teaspoon salt in a sauce pan, bring to a boil, then turn off the heat and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Let the bulgur sit for 20-30 minutes and then fluff with a fork. Transfer the cooked vegetables and bulgur to a large bowl, and toss with the garlic, green onion, lemon juice, parsley, mint and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Taste for salt and pepper and add more if desired. Let the salad sit for at least 30 minutes before eating if possible.
The Hens are Eating their Greens…
I got to feed the hens a broccoli plant that wasn’t producing broccoli. They love to eat their greens which is one of the reasons our eggs have more flavor than the ones at the store. As the weather warms though the spring, they will produce more and more eggs.
If you need an extra dozen, just let us know and we can add them in to your basket!
Chinese White Celery…
I love to feature an unexpected vegetable, and right now it is our Chinese white celery. This salad combines strong ingredients to pair with the celery. I found this online, and published it as written, but I would use raisins instead of dates and bleu cheese instead of Parmesan. If you’re not ready to go straight celery, you could toss this with lettuce and add a bit of extra salt.
Celery Salad with Almonds, Dates and Parmesan (bonappetit.com)
½ cup raw almonds
8 celery stalks, thinly sliced on a diagonal, leaves included
6 dates, pitted, coarsely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 ounces Parmesan, shaved
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Preheat oven to 350°. Spread out almonds on a small rimmed baking sheet; toast, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, 8–10 minutes. Let cool; coarsely chop. Toss almonds, celery with leaves, dates, and lemon juice in a medium bowl; season with salt and pepper. Add Parmesan and oil and toss gently; season with red pepper flakes.
Metaphors of Soil and Soul
By Ronda May Melendez
I am brought back to very basics this week with the idea of planting in succession. Each time that we plant a new row of any vegetable, we have committed to the internment of what was once a little life. And the seed readily makes itself available for said rest and consequent brokenness!!! And yet, I ponder their process of grieving. They had to die little by little in order to be dried up enough to be ready for planting.
1 Corinthians 15: 40-44 says, “There are also celestial bodies and terrestrial bodies; but the glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another. The is the glory of the sun, another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differs from another star in glory. So also, is the resurrection of the dead. The body is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption. It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power. It is sown a natural body; it is raised in a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.”
We can see this concept alive and well with our little seed friends. They give themselves freely in order that we may harvest the fruits of the lives they gave. And what generosity! More often than not, we harvest many times beyond the one life of the seed. As I write I think of fennel and how it goes to seed beautifully. There are all these little seeds on the tiny little stalks, hundreds coming from one large stalk. Many facets of the plant, but many little lives that will produce thousands more in due time.
Do we believe that about our lives? Are there facets in which we are being asked to die too? Is it difficult to believe that anything will be resurrected and go forth into enormous fruitfulness? God, please help us to see the truth of your Majesty and Might in these areas of our lives.