Monday, November 2, 2009

RECIPE: Apple Spice Cake with Brown Sugar Glaze

From Bon Appétit February 2007
Serves 12



Nonstick vegetable oil spray

3 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1 3/4 pounds Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, coarsely grated

1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 1/2 cups sugar

1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar

1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

3 large eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice


1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter

1/4 cup whipping cream

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt

For cake:
1. Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 325F.

2. Spray 12-cup Bundt pan with nonstick spray. Sift flour and next 6 ingredients into medium bowl. Drain grated apples in strainer. Using hands or kitchen towel, squeeze out excess liquid from apples. Measure 2 cups grated apples.

3. Using electric mixer, beat butter, both sugars, and lemon peel in large bowl until fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time. Mix in vanilla and lemon juice. Beat in flour mixture. Mix in grated apples. Transfer batter to prepared pan.

4. Bake cake until tester inserted near center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Cool in pan on rack 20 minutes.

Prepare glaze:
1. Stir all ingredients in small nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves and mixture comes to boil. Reduce heat to medium; whisk until glaze is smooth, about 1 minute. Remove from heat.

2. Invert cake onto rack set over baking sheet. Using small skewer, pierce holes all over top of warm cake. Pour glaze over top, allowing it to be absorbed before adding more.

3. Cool cake 30 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

RECIPE: Root Vegetables Anna

From Bon Appétit January 2009

Serves 6

Nonstick vegetable oil spray

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, melted, divided

1 1/4 pounds russet potatoes (about 2 medium), peeled, cut into scant 1/8-inch-thick rounds

1/2 3-inch-diameter celery root (celeriac), trimmed, peeled, halved, very thinly sliced (1 1/4 cups to 1 1/2 cups)

1 medium turnip, peeled, halved, very thinly sliced (1 1/4 cups to 1 1/2 cups)

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

1. Spray 9 1/2-inch-diameter nonstick oven-proof skillet with vegetable oil spray; add 2 tablespoons melted butter. Arrange half of potato rounds in skillet, overlapping in concentric circles. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Alternate celery root slices and turnip slices atop potatoes in overlapping concentric circles. Sprinkle with rosemary, then lightly with salt and pepper. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons melted butter. Top with remaining potato slices in overlapping concentric circles. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Press with spatula to compact.

2. Preheat oven to 400°F. Cook vegetables over medium heat 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook until bottom layer is golden, about 25 minutes. Uncover and drizzle with 2 tablespoons melted butter. Transfer skillet to oven; bake uncovered until vegetables are very tender and golden, 20 to 25 minutes.

3. Run small knife around vegetables to loosen from skillet. Place large platter atop skillet. Using pot holders, firmly hold skillet and platter together and invert vegetables onto platter. Cut into wedges and serve.

RECIPE: Beef Stew with Potatoes and Carrots

As winter rolls in, make this hearty stew to warm you up.

From Gourmet December 2008
Serves 12


For braised beef:

5 pounds boneless beef chuck (not lean), cut into 2-inch pieces

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 carrots, quartered

3 celery ribs, quartered

2 medium onions, quartered

1 head garlic, halved crosswise

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1/3 cup balsamic vinegar

1 (750-ml) bottle dry red wine (about 3 3/4 cups)

2 Turkish bay leaves or 1 California

2 thyme sprigs

3 cups reduced-sodium beef broth

3 cups water

For potatoes and carrots:

2 1/2 pounds small white boiling potatoes

1 1/2 pounds carrots

1. Braise beef:

Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle.

2. Pat beef dry and season with 2 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper.

3. Heat oil in 6-to 8-quart heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid over medium-high heat until it shimmers, then brown meat, without crowding, in 3 batches, turning, about 8 minutes per batch. Transfer to a platter.

4. Reduce heat to medium, then add carrots, celery, onions, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until well browned, about 12 minutes.

5. Push vegetables to one side of pot. Add tomato paste to cleared area and cook paste, stirring, 2 minutes, then stir into vegetables.

6. Add vinegar and cook, stirring, 2 minutes.

7. Stir in wine, bay leaves, and thyme and boil until wine is reduced by about two thirds, 10 to 12 minutes.

8. Add broth to pot along with water, beef, and any juices from platter and bring to a simmer. Cover and braise in oven until meat is very tender, about 2 1/2 hours.

9. Set a large colander in a large bowl. Pour stew into colander. Return pieces of meat to pot, then discard remaining solids. Let cooking liquid stand 10 minutes.

10. Cook potatoes and carrots:
While beef braises, peel potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch-wide wedges. Slice carrots diagonally (1-inch).

11. Add potatoes and carrots to stew (make sure they are submerged) and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until potatoes and carrots are tender, about 40 minutes.

Serve with crusty bread.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

FARM NEWS 11.1.09

Our 22cnd week of harvests is here. Sadly it is the end of the season for the CSA. It has been a bit of a mixed season but all in all we've had lots of great food. Plenty of greens, onions, garlic, sweet red peppers, salad mix, beets to name just a few. Best broccoli year ever! We wish we were sitting on stockpiles of winter storage crops like carrots, sweet potatoes, winter squash and potatoes. Unfortunately we really don't have anything left this year. So we are all in the same boat now. We'll be heading to the store soon for our vegetables.

Our fearless apprentices Cody and Alissa will be leaving this week. Although we wish we could recruit them for life, they seem inclined to look for other learning opportunities. Dan will be on his own but of course his list of projects never ends. He'll be spreading compost, tending the animals, putting plastic on the greenhouse, collecting leaves for compost making. Bea will be his sidekick when she's not at school as she is becoming quite the milker and loves to help with the leaves.

We celebrate this week as we see a break in the work coming, as we are buying our house and we will also be reunited with our adventurous kitty Bables. Our hope for the winter is for lots of family time, a little R&R for Dan and soon enough we'll be back at it again. It won't be long before Dan is into the seed catalogs again.

Thanks to all for a great season and we hope you'll be with us again for another year of bountiful harvests.

Your farm family,
Tracy, Dan, Bea and Baxter