Week 21: Bambi Came for Dinner

Looks like a good pick! (Photo by Claire Burnett)

Looks like a good pick! (Photo by Claire Burnett)

Good Morning Folks,
We hope you have been enjoying the fall bounty as much as we have!  As it turns out, you folks are not the only ones hungry this autumn. After seven years of waiting, we've finally been discovered...anyone have a guess? Buler? Turns out Bambi, and his entire extended family, have come for dinner on the farm this week. They prefer the tapas menu as opposed to full courses.  Nibble a little from each head of lettuce, a sampling of tomatoes for a nice caprese salad, then off to our neighbors for a dessert of fall strawberries. Good thing we don't have sweet corn. I suppose they feel safe in the veggie patch, fattening up for winter and hiding from hunters. Speaking of hunters, ironic how the hunted have now become the hunters (veggie hunters that is). Stay tuned for more gossip after the dinner party, we may have some good venison and vegetable recipes to pass along shortly.  Kidding!  (only sort of)

A full Saturday Market stand makes everyone happy! (Photo by Claire Burnett)

A full Saturday Market stand makes everyone happy! (Photo by Claire Burnett)

As we wait for the first kiss of frost to light along the river valley and sweeten up those fall roots, we will relish in the bounty of shoulder season. The Saturday market stand was so full of goodness that we had to stack boxes to make room for all the different varieties of food available right now. Frisee is back on the menu here at the farm and when combined with fall flavors, it makes for some fanciful vittles. Chop coarsely and serve with fall apples, blue cheese, and walnuts for a seasonal salad. Sautee with leeks, maple syrup,lemon juice, and good salt for a delicious side. Try in rustic potato garlic soup or just chase your three year old around the house with its pom-pom leaves.  

Also, Make sure to pick up some carmen sweet peppers at the stand. Those long, skinny, red peppers are actually sweet and nothing to be afraid of. Combine with tomatoes, onions, garlic, oregano, bay leaf, and a hint of cinnamon and they make a sensuous sauce for spicy sausage and broccoli raab pasta. Please your pallet with roasted corn pudding in an Acorn Squash bowl (see recipe below) or roast some delecata squash with some dried chiles and herbs and serve warm over a bed of arugula and some good mozzarella (thank you kinfolk cookbook!). Combinations are like the beach boys - endless as this summer. Dust off your record player, pour some good wine, and celebrate the season with the best meal in town. 

See y'all real soon!


This Week's Harvest

Most of a head of lettuce (just kidding)
Broccoli Raab (Saturday only)
Baby Bok Choy
Fennel Bulbs
Yellow Onions
Cabbage (various types)
Winter Squash
Salad Turnips

Roasted Corn Pudding in Acorn Squash by Vegetarian Compass

1 small (2 lb.) acorn squash, cut in half lengthwise and seeded
1 tablespoon clarified butter or olive oil
1 cup milk
1 egg plus 2 egg whites
1/2 cup fresh corn kernels (or more if you like)
1/4 teaspoon anise seed, chopped
1/2 cup chopped scallions (we used leeks)
a tiny pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1/3 cup grated white cheddar cheese

Preheat the oven to 375F degrees with a rack in the middle.

Rub the orange flesh of the squash with the butter/oil. Place cut side up on a baking sheet. You will want it to sit flat (and not tip), if you are having trouble just level out the bottom using a knife. If the squash is tilting on the pan, the filling will run out - bad news. Cover the squash with foil and bake for 40 minutes or until the squash starts to get tender.

In a bowl combine the milk, eggs, corn, anise seed, half of the scallions, nutmeg, and salt. Fill each of the squash bowls 3/4 full.  Carefully transfer the squash back to the oven without spilling (tricky!). Continue baking uncovered for another 30 - 50 minutes, or until the squash is fully cooked through, and the pudding has set. The amount of time it takes can vary wildly depending on the squash and oven. At the last minute sprinkle with cheese and finish with a flash under the broiler to brown the cheese. Keep and eye on things, you can go from melted cheese to burnt and inedible in a flash. Serve hot sprinkled with the remaining scallions.

Serves 4 - 6.

Prep time: 10 min - Cook time: 45 min