Sunday, July 26, 2009

This week in CSA - Fava beans and plums

Oh CSA, how do I love thee? I opted for a 1/2 fruit share on top of my veggies and while the cherries and currants were OK in the last delivery this week's 5 lbs of plums and 2 lbs of peaches blew them out of the water. Oh! So wonderful.

While many groans of 'more chard' were heard, I was glad to see some cooking greens in the delivery. In the next few months I'm going to seriously miss those tender early summer leaves. Green smoothies are a great place to get rid of the excess. This evening I had a simple dinner of sauteed chard with ginger, carrots, garlic, green onions, soy, and the last of a nice bottle of red to deglaze the pan with a smoothie for dessert. I left the fresh greens out of the smoothie and I missed their earthy flavor.We may be getting a little tired of chard, but I may never want a smoothie of just fruit again.

This weeks adventures included Fava Bean Pesto and a little foray into preserving these delicious fruits: plum chutney.

Now, I had a little leftover pesto in the freezer from my garlic scape pesto, so I pulled that out and doctored it up with this little recipe:

Fava Bean Pesto

  • 1 cup fava beans, peeled and blanched
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic
  • handfull of pine nuts
  • fresh basil and parsley
I pureed the fava beans in the oil with the basil and parsley in the mixture. I like the pine nuts to add a little more texture, so I rough chopped those and added them once the pesto was the consistency I wanted. For a little extra moisture I used some of the pasta water. Sorry it's not more exact, I sometimes just cook by feel. Also, I think this recipe would be awesome with some sharp cheese, goat cheese, or even feta.

Plum Chutney (canned):

There were two wonderful recipes for Plum Chutney that I found online, and using my favorite Ball Blue Book as a guide for the processing, this concoction came out amazing!

I used this recipe for the helpful canning instructions and I used it for a guide on adding the red onion to the mix. I did not use the garlic, but the spices in this recipe from epicurious really called to me, so I stuck to the red wine vinegar, fresh ginger, mustard, pepper, star anise, cinnamon, sugar, red onion, and plums. Using 2 lbs of plums and 1/2 a red onion it made 7 4oz pints of chutney.

Pair it with farmer's market pork and put a jar in gift baskets to share the CSA flavor.

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