Tuesday, August 3, 2010

August 3rd week 12

Everyone and everything at Bluebird Farm has enjoyed several days of cool, cloudiness with the temps not breaking 80 degrees. How refreshing! That meant the soil cooled down from 90 degrees to the mid 70’s. The plants loved the perfect soil temps and we’ve been watching the veggies and grass grow. It was also the perfect time to transplant more cilantro, the last succession of squash and cucumbers, and an attempt to get snow peas seeds to germinate. Hopefully these last squash and cuke plants will have good growing conditions and we will all swim in their fruits.

The flowers are putting on a show

This must be the Week of the Pepper! You have several types of peppers in your box this week. Not all peppers are bell peppers and not all are spicy- check out the Corno di Toro! Look for several recipes for them at the end of this newsletter. If you can’t use them all, try roasting them and freezing for a pleasant surprise in bean chili this winter.

Pepper Flower
In your box:

Heirloom tomatoes or cherry tomatoes




Peppers- see below

What type of chiles and peppers are growing at Bluebird Farm right now?

Green bell peppers: sweet, versatile peppers that are picked before they have turned red or yellow. 2 types:

Red bell peppers: “Ace” is a productive plant- even through this heat that cause most others to drop their flowers! (no peppers if the flowers are dropped) We’ve been watching it develop larger and larger green bell peppers. There’s finally a handful of ripe red bell peppers coming on in the next weeks.

Clockwise from top: Jalopeno, Bell peppers, Coro di Toro, Poblano

Orange bell peppers: “California Golden Wonder” has been slow to grow and ripen, but offers a nice, small chunky pepper. Wait a few weeks to see if they ripen properly.

Long, Sweet Frying chile pepper: “Corno di Toro” or “Horn of the Bull” This highly regarded Italian heirloom is very popular for its sweet taste- never hot. For ease of slicing: try cutting across the whole pepper to make circles up the pepper and then remove the seeds if you wish.

Poblanos on left, Corno di Toro on right
Also try roasting!

Poblano: These are traditionally used for roasting and stuffing (Chile Rellanos is the most famous dish). From the Passionate Vegetarian, “Poblanos don’t offer a nice big cavity just dying to be stuffed. What they do offer is marvelous flavor- sweet, hot, with an undernote of chocolate- and an almost majestic color, a green so dark it’s nearly black. Their cavity is small and triangular; stuffing them is more like filling a small flat purse than a cup. Still, they are not to be missed”
Jalapeño: Small and wedge shaped- Some people love them and others don’t! You may leave the seeds and membrane in for the most heat.

Jalapeño: Small and wedge shaped- Some people love them and others don’t! You may leave the seeds and membrane in for the most heat.

Jalapenos in various states of ripeness

I love roasted chiles! I was first introduced to a freshly roasted chile while staffing a farmer’s market in Colorado for the ranch I was working on. My first bite was of a “Big Jim” chile stuffed with fresh soft sheep cheese, and it was love at first bite! The smells of the propane chile roaster rotating and flame roasting the chiles filled the air, bringing the locals to declare that the heights of summer had arrived!

Roasting chiles is simple. You char and blacken the chile or pepper with intense heat or direct flame. That means you can roast a poblano, chile, pepper, jalepeno or anything else with a gas grill, charcoal grill, gas stove range, electric or gas broiler.

Here’s a quick way to knock out a batch. Place the peppers or chiles with stems under a very hot grill or put the peppers or chiles on a baking sheet under a preheated broiler until the skin blisters slightly and is black in spots, about 5 minutes on each of two sides. Place in a large bowl with a towel over it until cool enough to handle; this steams the skin off. Peel most of the skin off. Don’t rinse the flavor away! Use a paper towel if needed! The pepper can then be used for days in many dishes. Or freeze for later.

Preparing for Stuffing : Cut a slit lengthwise from under the stem to the end point. Delicately scrape any seeds than can be easily removed. Stuff with your favorite stuffing.

Preparing for dicing: Cut a slit lengthwise from under the stem to the end point. Remove the stem, seeds and membrane. Slice and dice.

Or try this relish recipe
Peppers Stuffed with Chile Grits

Try this richly flavored recipe with roasted poblanos, green chiles or bell peppers or even an assortment of peppers! The piquant flavors of roasted peppers melt into the satisfying thick comfort of chile grits. Serve with chips ,salsa, and sour cream or plain yogurt next to shredded lettuce or cabbage.

Note: Have peppers or chiles prepared beforehand. Also note that the peppers are not baked after they are stuffed! I cook the grits while the onion is cooking to save time. Follow the directions on the package. It’s okay to use “quick” grits, just make sure to get plain flavored, watch the amount of sodium in the package, and make them thick!

1 tablespoon oil

2 medium onions, diced

1/2 tablespoon ground coriander

2 cups corn kernels, fresh, frozen or canned

1 clove garlic

1 cup thick cooked grits or polenta

3 tablespoons roasted, diced green chiles or poblanos, or more to taste

Salt and Pepper to taste

6 or 7 roasted poblanos or green chiles or (3 medium bell peppers- prepared for stuffing)

Heat the oil over medium heat, add onion and sauté for 4 minutes. Add ground coriander and corn and sauté for 3 more minutes. Add garlic, grits (or polenta), diced green chile, and stir to combine. The filling will need to be thick enough to stick together somewhat. If it’s not, cook and gently stir until thick.

Stuff the peppers or chiles and serve.

Chile Cheese Grits: Add ½ cup shredded cheese to the chile grit mixture and stir to combine

Good thing your farmers are so cool

Silly sheep enjoying new eats. Can you find the odd ewe in the photo below?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.