From the Land 3.13

announcements

The CSA is still operating during normal hours during spring break. Students: only some of you have signed up for this week. If you are unsure please email or call us.

Also, please remember your reusable and/or plastic bags this week. We’re completely out of plastic bags, and would love some donations from your collection!

job posting: The Prescott Farmers Market is currently seeking a Managing Director. If you’re interested, you can see the job posting here: http://prescottfarmersmarket.org/20130223141/hiring.html. Resumes are due this Friday.

food for thought

full share: DeCiccio broccoli, hakurei turnips, red potatoes, salad mix, Quelites, radishes, Toscano kale, and dill – all from Crooked Sky Farm.

partial share: DeCiccio broccoli, hakurei turnips, red potatoes, and salad mix!

veg of the week

Quelites: Chenopodium album

Quelites is a general term that refers to any wild native Mexican green, but despite their popularity are not commonly found in grocery stores. The Quelites we are receiving today are also known as lambs-quarters. They resemble spinach and can be cooked in the same way. They differ from spinach in that they aren’t quite as fuzzy, are very nutritious, and don’t break down as fast or completely as spinach. They are very popular in Mexican and South American cuisine, and rural New Mexican children are commonly sent out to gather them from the sides of roads and ditches.

Uses: You can use Quelites in any dish you would use spinach. Put them fresh in a salad or add them to eggs – in a quiche, omelette or scrambled eggs.

To store: Store in a plastic bag in your refrigerator’s crisper bin. The greens will lose crispness after the first week, but are still edible for a few weeks after that.

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Crooked Sky Farm
By Alexander Deck

crookdsky2

Frank Martin has always enjoyed farming. In 1999 when he started the farm business, he was driving around and turned onto a road called Crooked Sky Road. When he asked how the road got its name, he was told that the natives in that land called that area “crooked sky” because of how the mountains made the sky look against the horizon.

Today, Crooked Sky Farms is broken up between property in Duncan, Virden, and four different urban locations in Phoenix ranging between 10 to 40 acres. One of the reasons Frank farms in the city is that there is not a lot of farmland available around Phoenix, but the biggest reason is to preserve existing farmland.

Crooked Sky sells at the many different farmers markets in Phoenix, has several of their own CSAs around the valley and in Flagstaff and Tucson, as well as contributing to our PCCSA. You can find out more about the CSA and farm here.

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sauteed quelites
adapted from The Food Network
serves 4

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 bag quelites, cut into 2-inch strips
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

In large saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When the oil begins to smoke, add the onions and jalapeno. Cook for 3 minutes until onions are translucent. Add tomatoes, and cook for 2 more minutes. Add the greens. Cook for 5 minutes until greens are wilted and tender. Add the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper. Serve.

lamb’s quarters with beans: quelites con frijoles
adapted from mexconnect
serves 4

  • 1 tablespoon corn oil (or your favorite cooking oil)
  • ½ cup chopped onions
  • 1 large clove garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chile seeds (from ancho, guajillo or any mild dried red chile)
  • 2 cups cooked pinto beans
  • 1 ½ pounds quelites
  • salt to taste

Heat the oil in a saucepan, add the onion, garlic and chile seeds and cook until the onion is just beginning to wilt.

Add the pinto beans and quelites and continue cooking until the greens have wilted. Add salt to taste.

For a vegetarian meal, serve with white rice. Leftover diced pork is a good addition for meat eaters.

peanut mole enchiladas with braised quelites and potatoes
adapted from food and wine

SMOKY PEANUT MOLE

  • 2 medium (about 1 ounce) dried ancho chiles, stemmed and seeded
  • 1/2 cup vegetable or olive oil
  • 1/2 small white onion, sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 pound ripe tomatoes
  • 1 cup dry roasted peanuts, plus a few tablespoons chopped for garnish
  • 2 slices firm bread (or 1/2 dry Mexican bolillo roll), torn into pieces
  • 2 canned chipotle chiles en adobo, seeded
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice, preferably freshly ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, preferably freshly ground Mexican canela
  • About 3 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup fruity red wine
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt, about 1 1/2 teaspoons, depending on the saltiness of the broth
  • Sugar, about 1 tablespoon

Tear the ancho chiles into flat pieces, then toast a few at a time in a dry skillet over medium heat: flatten with a metal spatula for a few seconds, until they crackle and change color slightly, then flip and press again. (If they give off more than the slightest wisp of smoke, they are burning and will add a bitter element to the sauce.) In a small bowl, soak the chiles in hot water for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain and discard the water.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a heavy, medium (4-quart) pot (preferably a Dutch oven) over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic cloves, and cook, stirring regularly, until well browned, about 10 minutes. Scrape into a blender jar. Set the pan aside.

Preheat the broiler. Broil the tomatoes on a baking sheet 4-inches from the heat source until blackened, about 5 minutes, then flip and repeat on the other side. Let cool, then peel, collecting all the juices from the tomato. Add the tomato to the blender, along with 1 cup of the peanuts, the bread, chipotles, drained anchos, allspice and cinnamon. Add 1 1/2 cups of the broth and blend until smooth, stirring and scraping down the sides of the blender jar; add more liquid if needed. Press the mixture through a medium-mesh strainer set over a bowl.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the remaining oil in the pot over medium high, until shimmering. Add the puree all at once. Stir as the nutty-smelling mixture thickens and darkens for about 5 minutes, then stir in the remaining 2 cups broth, the wine, vinegar and bay leaves. Partially cover and let gently simmer over medium-low heat for roughly 45 minutes, stirring regularly for the flavors to harmonize. If necessary, thin the sauce with a little more broth to keep it the consistency of a cream soup. Taste and season with salt, usually about 1 1/2 teaspoons, and the sugar. Cover and keep warm if using immediately. Mole can be kept in the refrigerator for two weeks.

FILLING

  • 2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
  • 1 medium red onion, sliced 1/2-inch thick
  • 4 cups loosely packed, sliced quelites
  • 3 medium red potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch dice and blanch in salted water until tender
  • Salt

ENCHILADAS

  • 8 corn tortillas (plus a few extra in case some break)
  • 2 1/2 cups Smoky Peanut Mole
  • A few tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts, for garnish
  • A few sprigs of parsley, for garnish

In a large skillet, heat the oil over moderately high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring regularly, until richly browned, about 10 minutes. Add the sliced greens and potatoes, cover and cook about 3 minutes (just to wilt the quelites). Uncover and cook, stirring frequently, until the greens are tender and the mixture dry, about 5 minutes longer. Taste and season with salt. Remove from the heat. (If not completing the enchiladas immediately, spread the mixture onto a baking sheet and cool completely; return to pan before continuing.)

Set up a steamer (a vegetable steamer in a large saucepan filled with 1-inch of water works well); heat to a boil. Wrap the tortillas in a heavy kitchen towel and lay them in the steamer; cover tightly. Boil 1 minute, turn off the heat and let stand without opening the steamer for about 15 minutes.

While the tortillas are standing, bring the mole to a simmer in a medium-size saucepan (if not already warm). Taste and season with additional salt if necessary; thin with additional water or broth to the consistency of a medium cream soup. Warm the filling over medium-low heat.

When ready to serve, make enchiladas a portion at a time: Lay 2 tortillas on a warm dinner plate, roll a portion of the filling into each one, lay the enchiladas seam-side down on the plate and ladle a portion of the mole over the top—cover the tortilla completely; be generous with the sauce. Sprinkle with peanuts and parsley leaves. Serve immediately.

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