Week 4 of our summer CSA has come and gone, this week bringing some of the usual staples (garlic scapes, herbs), but also some new vegetables (mariachi peppers! the most fabulous, crunchy, earth-shatteringly delicious spinach I’ve ever tasted).
Here’s a shot of this week’s box:
2. Cippolini scallions
3. Red komatsuna
5. Bok choy
6. Bell peppers
8. Garlic scapes
11. Mariachi peppers*
*Kasha snuck the Mariachi peppers into my bag with firm instructions to make myself a spicy Paloma.
Which I did, immediately after I got home. She was right, damn delicious – tequila, spicy simple syrup, grapefruit, a match made in heaven.
To make the spicy mariachi pepper Palomas:
Make the mariachi pepper simple syrup by bringing a cup of sugar and a cup of water to a simmer. When the mixture is simmering and the sugar has dissolved, add 1 sliced mariachi pepper (I included the seeds), and let steep off heat for 30 mins. Strain and then use part for the cocktail. To make the roasted grapefruit garnish, roast some brown sugar-coated sliced grapefruits in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes, flipping halfway in between. For one Paloma, rim a glass with a cut lime, and kosher salt. Combine 1/3 cup grapefruit juice with a squeeze of lime and 2 tablespoons of mariachi pepper simple syrup. Add ¼ cup of tequila, stir, and top the glass with club soda. Double, triple, or quadruple as needed.
We get a newsletter each week from Bialas which makes recommendations on how to use the vegetables in our box. One idea that I kept seeing (and wrongfully ignoring) is to make the scapes into a butter for standout garlic bread. Seeing that I had a pile of scapes from this week’s box, and a few left over from last week, I took matters into my own hands, and made a big batch of scape butter. I’ve used this on everything but dessert.
To make the garlic scape butter:
Pulse 2 garlic scapes in a food processor until finely chopped. Add a stick of softened butter, and blend, adding a pinch of salt if the butter is unsalted. Optional: flavor the butter with herbs like tarragon or sage. Use the butter on anything from grilled steaks and fish to grilled / toasted bread, pasta and everything in between.
The butter played center stage on the dinner table that night with grilled steak and grilled bread – delicious on both. Served on the side was a fattoush salad that used up just about every green that I got in my box that week, including the carrot tops!
To make the CSA fattoush:
Pulse 2 garlic scapes in a food processor and add to a large bowl. Finely chop an entire bunch of parsley and add to the bowl. Add more chopped vegetables such as celery greens, carrot greens, romaine, mint, tomatoes, sweet onion greens, and cucumber. Tear 2 pitas into chunks and toss them in a large sautee pan that’s been coated with olive oil- adding a little more oil if necessary to make sure that the torn pieces come out crispy and golden. Season with salt and add to the large bowl of vegetables. When ready to serve, dress the fattoush with olive oil and red wine vinegar or lemon juice, some more salt, and cracked black pepper.
The garlic scape butter proved to be useful when I was ravenously hungry and needed a quick snack – a little toast, a swipe of garlic scape butter, some Jersey tomatoes, a glass of iced rose as they do in Provence…summer food at its finest.8 comments