Farmers’ Market Box April 30th, 2020

This week’s local produce and featured farms:

Farmer’s Choice:

Strawberries – Valdivia Family Farms

Basil – Fresno Evergreen Farms

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Below are some great recipes for you to try out with the produce from this week’s box. Let us know on our Facebook Page or through twitter if you tried any of them with the hashtag #SpecialtyProduceFMB!

Farmers’ Market Box Recipes

Cold Sesame Noodle Salad with Bok Choy

Serves 6


1 pound linguine
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons peeled and grated fresh ginger
2 cups broccoli florets
One bunch bok choy, root end removed, and chopped into bite-sized pieces
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter (don’t use natural)
1/4 cup rice vinegar
Few drops Sriracha (optional)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 cups shredded chicken
4 spring onions (white and tender green parts), thinly sliced on the diagonal
4 medium-size carrots, cut into matchsticks (about 2 cups)
1/2 cup chopped unsalted dry-roasted peanuts
2 tablespoons sesame seeds


1.Cook the linguine in boiling salted water until 2 minutes short of al dente. Drain and put into a large mixing bowl.
2.In a wok or large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil, swirl the garlic and ginger in the oil for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
3.Add the broccoli and stir fry for 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to the bowl with the linguine. Add the bok choy to the wok and stir fry until it is wilted. Transfer to the salad bowl.
4.In a food processor or blender, combine the remaining oil, sesame oil, peanut butter, vinegar, Siracha and sugar.
5.Blend until smooth. Pour over the noodles, broccoli and bok choy. Add the chicken, onions, and carrots, and toss to coat. Garnish the salad with chopped peanuts, and sesame seeds.

Kale and Potato Cakes

Serves 6


1 pounds fingerling potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped green garlic
1 bunch kale, washed, spun dry, tough stems removed, cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup unsalted butter
2 to 3 tablespoons sour cream
1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
1 cup panko or fine dry breadcrumbs
Oil for frying


1.Put the potatoes into water to cover and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the potatoes are tender. Drain thoroughly.
2.While the potatoes are cooking, in a skillet, heat the oil, swirl the green garlic in the oil for 30 seconds, add the kale, and season with salt and pepper. Saute the kale until it wilts. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
3.When the potatoes are drained, put them into a mixing bowl, and mash the potatoes with the butter and sour cream. Add the Parmigiano and kale and mix until combined. Taste a bit of the mixture and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.
4.Using a portion scoop, form the mixture into patties (about 1/2-inch thick) Dip in the panko, and put onto a baking sheet. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours to firm up.
5.Heat 1/2-inch of vegetable or olive oil in a large skillet and fry the potato cakes until they are golden brown on each side. Transfer to paper toweling to drain and serve warm. The cakes can be made ahead of time and kept warm in a 350 degree oven.

Creamy Kale and Bacon Gratin

Serves 4


6 strips thick cut bacon, chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 small spring onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bunch kale, tough stems removed, leaves rinsed well and left damp, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano


1.Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and coat the inside of a gratin dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2.In a large skillet, cook the bacon, until crisp, remove from the pan, and remove all but 2 tablespoons of bacon fat from the pan.
3.Melt the butter, add the onions and garlic to the pan and saute until the onions begin to soften.
4.Add the kale, toss with the garlic, and onion, add the broth, cover and simmer for 3 minutes, util the kale becomes wilted.
5.Add the cream, reserved bacon, and lemon juice, season with salt and pepper, transfer to the gratin dish, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes until bubbling and the cheese is golden brown.

Blue Cheese Caesar Salad

Serves 4


One head romaine, washed, spun dry and cut into 1-inch ribbons
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1 1/3 cups olive oil
1 1/2 cups crumbled Gorgonzola cheese or your favorite blue cheese
2 cups garlic croutons


1.Put the lettuce into a salad bowl.
2.In a mixing bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, garlic, Worcestershire, Dijon, pepper, oil and blue cheese.
3.Season with salt if needed.
4.Toss the salad with some of the dressing, add the croutons and toss again.

If you would like to make a traditional Caesar, this is the dressing:


1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons anchovy paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper


1.Whisk together and proceed as directed above. The dressings will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days—they are great as a topping on baked potatoes, tossed into pasta or potato salads and as dips.

Romaine Salad with Creamy Spring Onion Dressing

Serves 4


1 head romaine lettuce, washed, spun dry and chopped into 1-inch pieces
2 spring onions, chopped using the white and tender green parts
1 cup mayonnaise
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 cup packed basil
Salt and pepper


1.Put the lettuce into a salad bowl.
2.In a food processor or blender, combine the onions, mayonnaise, zest, lemon juice, and basil. Puree until smooth.
3.Season with salt and pepper and toss with the romaine. The dressing is delicious over grilled fish, as a dip for veggies, and to mix into chicken or seafood salads.

Taste of Spring Potato Salad

Serves 4

The secret to great potato salad, is to use low starch potatoes, boil or stem till tender, then allow to cool completely before peeling and cutting. You can leave the skins on, but only if they are pristine, any trace of green tinge on the peel, you need to get rid of it. The green tinge is caused by exposure to light, and creates a toxin called solanine—it won’t kill you, but it will give you a terrible tummy ache.


1 pound fingerling potatoes, scrubbed
1/4 cup finely chopped spring onions
2 ribs celery, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons sour cream or Greek Style yogurt
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped dill
2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley
Salt and pepper


1.Cook the potatoes in boiling water to cover, or steam until tender.
2.Cool completely.
3.When the potatoes are cooled, peel and cut into bite-sized pieces. I find with fingerlings they need to be peeled, but that decision is yours.
4.Put the potatoes into a salad bowl, add the onion, celery, salt and pepper, and sprinkle with the vinegar. Toss to blend.
5.In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice, zest, garlic, dill, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Toss the dressing with the potatoes and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.

Roasted Fingerlings

Serves 4


1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 pound fingerling potatoes, cut in half lengthwise
Salt and pepper


1.Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, line a baking sheet with parchment, aluminum foil, or silicone.
2.In a bowl, combine the oil, potatoes, salt and pepper.
3.Spread evenly onto the baking sheet and roast for 40 to 50 minutes, turning once halfway through the cooking time, until the potatoes are crispy, and golden brown.
4.Serve warm.

Variations


a)Add 3 chopped cloves of garlic to the oil and potatoes.
b)Add 2 tablespoons rosemary to the oil and potatoes.
c)Add 1 to 2 teaspoons of your favorite dried herb to the oil and potatoes (because of the high heat, fresh herbs with the exception on rosemary will not hold up in the oven) Sprinkle fresh herbs over the cooked potatoes at the end.

Broccoli Potato Soup

Serves 6

This has been one of my favorite soups during self-isolation; it is an old recipe from Marcella Hazan, it’s so simple, yet delicious


3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound fingerling potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch dice
3 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
3 broccoli florets
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
salt and pepper


1.In a Dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons of butter with the oil. Saute the onion over medium-high heat, until almost caramelized–this will take about 5 to 7 minutes.
2.Add the garlic and cook another minute.
3.Add the potatoes, and saute for 3 to 4 minutes, until the potatoes have begun to color.
4.Add the broth, and broccoli.
5.Bring to a boil, simmer for 10 to 15 minutes until the potatoes are tender.
6.Add the remaining butter and Parmigiano, season with salt and pepper, and serve warm.

Chicken Miso Soup with Bok Choy

Serves 4 to 6


2 tablespoons vegetable oil
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 medium carrots, finely diced
One bunch bok choy, root end trimmed, and cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
1/4 cup white or yellow miso paste
8 cups chicken broth
3 cups cooked shredded chicken
12 oz. fresh udon noodles
4 scallions, finely chopped, using the white and tender green parts
Soy sauce and chili oil to taste


1.In a Dutch oven, heat the oil, swirl the garlic and ginger for 30 seconds until fragrant.
2.Add the onion, carrots and bok choy, and saute until the onion begins to soften.
3.Add the miso and chicken broth and bring to a boil.
4.Add the chicken and udon. Simmer for 5 minutes. Season with soy sauce (or salt) and chili oil (or pepper)
5.Garnish the soup with scallions.

Tangerine Shortbread

Makes about 20


3/4 cup sugar
zest from 2 tangerines
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 egg
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
Raw sugar for garnish


1.Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and coat a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2.In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar, zest, butter and vanilla.
3.Blend in the egg, and then add the flour and salt. This will be a thick dough.
4.Evenly press the dough into the prepared pan.
5.Sprinkle the dough with the raw sugar and bake for 40 to 45 minutes until the shortbread is a light golden brown.
6.Cool the shortbread and cut into squares.

Sunshine Carrot Cake with Tangerine Frosting

Makes one 13-by-9-inch baking dish, or two 9-inch baking dishes for a layer cake, about 24 cupcakes
For the Cake

Serves 6 to 8


1 1/3 cups canola oil
2 cups sugar
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla paste or extract
Grated zest of 1 orange
3 cups grated carrots
1 cup chopped tangerine segments
1/4 cup tangerine juice
1/2 cup chopped nuts of your choice (pecans, macadamia nuts)
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 recipe Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe follows)


1.Preheat the oven to 350°F. Coat a 13 x 9-inch baking pan, or 2 9-inch round pans, with nonstick cooking spray. Or, line 24 muffin cups with baking liners.
2.In a large bowl, beat together the oil, sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Add the carrots, tangerines, juice, and nuts, stirring until blended. Add the flour, baking soda, and cinnamon and stir to combine. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes.
3.Place the pan on a rack and let cool completely. Spread the top of the cake with the cream cheese frosting.
4.Do-Ahead: At this point, you can cover and refrigerate for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 2 months.

a.Bake cupcakes until a skewer inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs sticking to it, 15 to 17 minutes.

Tangerine Cream Cheese Frosting


Makes 6 cups, enough to frost two 9-inch layers, one 13 x 9-inch cake, or 48 cupcakes
One 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter or margarine
5 cups confectioners’ sugar
Grated zest of one tangerine
1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
Tangerine juice as needed


1.Using an electric mixer beat together the cream cheese and butter in a medium-size bowl. Add the confectioners’ sugar and zest, vanilla and beat until the mixture is of spreadable consistency.
2.If the frosting is too thick, beat in some juice, 1/2 teaspoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached.
3.Do-Ahead: At this point, you can cover and refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 6 months. I recommend you soften it at room temperature after it’s been refrigerated, so it’s easy to spread.

Strawberry Stuffed French Toast

Serves 6 to 8


8 large eggs
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon orange extract (or 1/2 teaspoon orange oil)
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
One 1-pound loaf sturdy white bread like Farmhouse white or Hawaiian Sweet Egg Bread
2 cup mascarpone cheese
1/4 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon orange extract (or 1/2 teaspoon orange oil)
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups sliced strawberries


1.Coat the inside of a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2.In a shallow mixing bowl, beat together the eggs, cream, orange extract and nutmeg. Dip 6 slices of the bread into the egg mixture, and lay the slices into the dish, wedging the pieces to fit (if your bread is large, it may only fit 4 slices)
3.In another bowl, cream together the mascarpone, orange juice, extract, and sugar. Spread the mixture over the egg battered bread in the pan.
4.Top with the sliced berries
5.Dip the remaining slices into the egg batter, and place over the strawberries in the pan. Pour any remaining batter evenly over the slices of bread.
6.Do-Ahead: Cover the French toast and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or up to 36 hours.
7.Remove the French toast from the refrigerator 45 minutes before baking to bring the pan to room temperature. Bake the French toast until golden brown and bubbling, 35 to 45 minutes. Remove from the oven; allow to rest for 10 minutes, before cutting into squares and serving with maple syrup or strawberry sauce.

Pesto Chicken

Serves 4


4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, tender removed, and breast flattened to about ¼-inch uniform thickness
¼ cup prepared fresh basil pesto (see recipe below)
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
½ cup heavy cream
Salt and pepper


1.Set a stainless steel or Scan pan skillet over medium high heat.
2.Brush each side of the chicken with some of the pesto.
3.Add the chicken to the pan and cook about 1 minute. Turn the chicken and cook until the chicken is cooked through—about 90 seconds. (this will vary if the chicken is thicker or thinner)
4.Remove the chicken from the pan, increase the heat to medium high and add the vinegar, stirring up the bits on the bottom of the pan.
5.Add the cream and any juices from the platter. And cook until the sauce has thickened and coats the back of a spoon.
6.Add the chicken back into the skillet and turn in the sauce, cooking for another minute. Taste for salt and pepper and adjust. Serve the chicken over a bed of cooked orzo pasta, or your favorite pasta.

Basil Pesto

Makes about 3 cups


2 cups fresh basil leaves
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup pine nuts
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1/2 cup olive oil
In a blender or food processor, process the basil, cheese, garlic, and pine nuts, and garlic together until broken up.
With the machine running, gradually add the oil and process until smooth.
Scrape down the bowl, and process again for another 30 seconds.
Do-Ahead: At this point, you can pour into a jar, float ½ inch of olive oil on the top, and refrigerate up for up to 5 days, or freeze for 3 months.

Dacquoise with Balsamic Strawberries and Basil

Serves 6

This dessert may not be that one-bowl cake, but it can be made ahead, and then assembled just before serving. It’s really worth the effort. This is the time to pull out the expensive aged balsamic vinegar, it makes a huge difference.
For the Merengue


6 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar


1.Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2.Line 2 large baking sheets with foil or parchment paper. Out line 4-inch circles on the foil or parchment.
3.In large bowl, with mixer at high speed, beat egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Sprinkle in sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating until whites stand in stiff, glossy peaks when beaters are lifted.
4.Spoon 1/8 of the meringue (about 3/4 cups) inside each circle on prepared cookie sheets. With narrow metal spatula, spread meringue evenly to fill circles.
5.Bake meringues 45 minutes. Turn off oven; leave meringues in oven 1 hour to dry. Transfer meringues on cookie sheets to wire racks; cool 10 minutes, then carefully peel foil from meringues and cool completely. Store in airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week.

For the Berries


2 cups sliced hulled strawberries
1/2 cup thinly sliced basil leaves
1/3 cup aged balsamic vinegar


1.In a bowl, toss together the berries, basil and vinegar. Refrigerate the berries till ready to serve.
2.To assemble the Dacquoise, place a merengue circle onto a dessert plate, and top with the berry mixture

@Diane Philips www.dianephillips.com Blog: www.cucinadivina.blogspot.com
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