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From Wellspring Charitable Gardens this Week - October 20, 2022


From the Garden this Week… Cucumber, Cherry Tomatoes, Eggplant, Peppers, Lettuce Mix, Carrots, Radishes or Salad Turnips, Winter Squash, Purple Beans, Basil, Parsley, Cilantro, & Fuyu Persimmons


Coming Soon… Pomegranates


Using your Produce… by Julie Moreno


With the last few weeks of summer produce coming. This is the time to save as much as possible. Each fall, I like to cook and freeze eggplant to use for Baba Ghanoush. I cut and freeze peppers raw to cook in chili beans in the winter. It also works well to make pesto and freeze it. It stores well in the freezer for 3-4 months. I love pickles and have always enjoyed the refrigerator pickles that come from the store. This recipe today is a Claussen knock off recipe. It is a ferment recipe where you leave the pickles out on the counter for a few days. They will naturally start to sour. The vinegar and the salt help to preserve the cucumbers before the additional acid from the ferment keeps the pickles preserved. Taste them after a few days in the fridge. They will change over time but are safe to eat for 6-8 months, if they


Fermented Pickle Recipe

- a Claussen knock off


1 large or 2 medium cucumbers

1 tablespoon minced onion

1 garlic clove, minced

1 teaspoon mustard seeds

1 head fresh dill or 1 teaspoon dill seed

1.5 cups water

½ cup vinegar

1 tablespoon kosher salt


* Slice off the blossom end of each cucumber and slice into spears or chips. Pack the cucumber into a quart jar with the onion, garlic, mustard seed, and dill seed. In a large measuring cup or bowl combine water, vinegar, and salt. Stir until the salt is dissolved. Pour the seasoned water over the cucumbers and spices. Cover the jar with lid, leaving it loosely capped. Let the jar sit on the counter out of direct sunlight for 2-3 days, and then store in the refrigerator for 2-3 days before enjoying the pickles.




Air-fryer Fried Green Tomatoes

by Debbie Wellman WCG Volunteer


Ingredients:


4 green tomatoes

2 eggs

3/4 cup cornmeal

3/4 cup panko or breadcrumbs

salt and black pepper to taste

vegetable oil for frying


Directions:


* Slice tomatoes 1/4 inch thick. Whisk eggs in a medium-size bowl. Mix cornmeal, breadcrumbs, salt, and pepper on a plate. Dip tomato slices in egg. Dredge in breadcrumbs, pressing to fully coat. Spay air-fryer with cooking oil and fill with tomato slices. Spray tomato tops with oil. Air fry at 400° for 8 minutes. Flip tomatoes and spay tops with oil and cook another 4 minutes. Done when golden brown. (Pan Fry: Into a large skillet, pour ¼ inch vegetable oil and heat over medium. Place tomatoes into pan in batches of 4 or 5, depending on the skillet size. Do not crowd; tomatoes should not touch. When the tomatoes are browned, flip and cook the other side. Remove and drain on paper towels.)




Not so sweet melons…


We have some melons out on the vine that will not completely ripen in this cooler fall weather. They are still good to eat, and I encourage you to enjoy them as a savory component to this salad or cut everything in a small dice for a salsa.


Melon Salsa


1 small melon, finely diced

2-3 radishes, finely diced

¼ cup finely diced red onion

2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or cilantro

1 sweet pepper, minced

1 hot pepper, minced

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

¼ teaspoon salt


Mix everything and eat immediately as a topping to chicken or fish or as a topping on salad.



Metaphors of Soil and Soul…


Reflection on (Im)Perfection

by Keith F Martin


Some produce in your harvest basket has been replaced with more attractive products provided by Perfection Farms, Inc. On second thought, probably not. We have noticed some of our fruits and vegetables showing “slight” blemishes that give them a rather “seedy” look. Their questionable shape, surface, or hue does not perfectly portray the ideal Form of The Melon, The Tomato, The Carrot, or The Squash, as Plato explained in his theory on the “fallen” nature of visible reality. (“What is the ideal Form of something named The Squash, anyway?”)


Aesthetic imperfections, unavoidable in our imperfect world, unabashedly reveal the natural, but varied, effects of sun, soil, and water on the surface of produce. These superficial blemishes proudly testify to their tree-, soil-, or vine-ripened goodness. At WCG, we happily refer to these deviations from the ideal form as “beauty marks.” Confucius said (Or was it Bruce Lee?), “Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without.” Yes, industrial farms have perfected techniques for providing flawless looking produce - using pesticides, early picking, culling undesirables, warehouse ripening sans exposure to sun, soil, and water - but at the expense of flavor and quality. They provide the perfect pebble rather than present a diamond in the rough. Have you tasted a store-bought tomato lately? It seduces the eye but savages the tongue.


We are hoping that your preference bends more toward superior taste than pleasing appearance alone, and we are trusting that you will thoroughly enjoy any “imperfect” looking produce you may find in your basket. If you do not, promptly let us know how we may provide you a more satisfying selection of fresh and flavorful vegetables, fruits, and herbs. Thank you for your support and your appreciation for quality that is not merely skin deep.



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