Week 14: Dress the Greens
Summer is winding down and the crew has been hard at work weeding the fall fields. The next few weeks will be picking and cleaning up what remains of the summer crops, continuing to harvest, and seeding for late fall. The first harvest of fall provided us some chard, arugula, and Russian kale! Coming soon: radishes, several varieties of kale, lettuce, and Asian greens.
Farm tip: When making a raw kale salad, massaging the leaves is the key. Working the greens with your hands renders the leaves tender enough to eat without cooking. Step 1: Remove and discard large main stems. Step 2: Sprinkle the leaves with a pinch of salt and a splash of olive oil and start massaging between your hands. Do not over-massage. Simply rub the leaves together until they just start to wilt and break down. The leaves should be crisp and easy to chew but not mushy.
You do not have to massage the kale if you are shredding into thin pieces or chopping into small bits. In addition, you do not have to massage it if you will be dressing the salad well ahead of time and storing it in the fridge before serving. The acids in the dressing will break down the cellulose in kale in the same way as massaging does.
What better way to celebrate the return of greens than with vinaigrette recipes! When making a vinaigrette, there are a few things to keep in mind:
Keep the oil to vinegar ratio at about 3:1
If you want a smooth consistency where the oil and vinegar do not separate, you must use an emulsifier. Dijon mustard and egg yolks are excellent options.
Add lots of flavors like onion, garlic, herbs, and honey.
For simplicity, use pint-sized jars for easy dump, shake, and serve salad dressing.
Use these vinaigrette recipes to dress a salad, toss on vegetables, or as a marinade. Hope you enjoy this weeks post Dressing the Greens.
GARLIC HERB VINAIGRETTE
1/2 cup raw apple cider vinegar
1-2 TBSP dijon mustard
3 garlic cloves, minced
generous pinch of sea salt and black pepper
2 tsp dried herbs (basil, oregano, chives, thyme all work well)
1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil
Combine all ingredients except olive oil in a jar. Stir well with a fork. Add olive oil, cover tightly, and shake well until combined. You can also use a blender and drizzle the oil in slowly while it is running. Serve over your basic green salad with added chopped vegetables.
Notes: Recipe courtesy of Simple Bites (https://www.simplebites.net/three-homemade-salad-dressing-recipes-better-for-you-better-for-your-wallet/)
SIMPLE LEMON TAHINI VINAIGRETTE
2 cloves garlic, mashed
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 TBSP lemon juice
2 TBSP tahini
Combine all ingredients in jar. Seal and shake to combine ingredients.
Notes: Here's a tasty and healthful alternative to vinaigrette salad dressing that you can make quickly in a jar. The nutty taste of tahini in this dressing enhances every kind of salad green.
THE BEST BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE
1/4 cup aged balsamic
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2-3 TBSP honey
2 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper
Pour the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, 2 tablespoons honey, Dijon mustard, dried thyme, and garlic clove in a jar. Season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper.Place the lid on the jar and shake vigorously to combine. Once smooth, taste. Then add more honey or salt if needed.
SAUSAGE AND TURNIPS IN THEIR SHELL