This Week’s Box 04/26/2014

The List

kale
tangelos
purple bunching onions
gold nugget tangerines
fennel
salad mix with spinach
chard
beets
lemons
bunch of 5 different herbs.

Crush a sage leaf and drop it in your water. Make a hot tea with a few leaves. Or take home a bunch of it and plan an epic meal around this most amazing herb/spice. A decent link on sage uses and recipes. Some of our customers, tie one of those little bunches of sage with string to make a little sage wand for smudging. This sage is not the white sage we have offered in the past. This is common garden sage. It is more mild and floral smelling. It also has has a wider range of uses than white sage.

Calendula appears to have the solar energy of sunflower, except, all that energy is packed into a tiny flower. Here at the ranch, we make a healing skin salve with calendula infused in olive oil with raw honey and green tea. Heart opening is the first quality that comes to mind when I think of calendula. It has an intoxicating smell. It is totally edible and has bookoo positive medicinal qualities to boot. Pull the petals off and sprinkle them on a salad or Make a hot tea with a couple whole flowers.

Lemon verbena will tell you everything you need to know about itself in one sniff. Crush a leaf in water. Make a hot tea. Chop it up fine and put it in a salad. Lemon Verbena loves to be invited to a veggie stir fry. Also make a great salad dressing when a few leaves are blended with olive oil, balsamic, lemon and honey.

Lavander. I am pretty sure we all know her.

Holy Basil actually ended up not making the cut at the last minute. There literally was not enough to cut. We put in a sprig of catnip instead.

Leaves of the Catnip Plant

Catnip

I consider all the herbs in the bunch to be mood enhancers. Mood elevators to be exact. Except for cat nip. This one falls on the sedative side of the spectrum. Even though kitties appear to go into a crazed bliss upon rolling in the stuff, it is because it is calming them into euphoria. Unfortunately for us humans, we can roll in cat nip all day, but if we do not make a tea of the leaves, we cannot feel the sedative effects of cat nip.

If your feeling up to it, take a little of each herb, crush it all up and let it sit in room temp water for at least half a day. This is called a cold infusion. Cold infusion can be as strong as a hot infusion since you are preserving all the constituents of the plants instead of cooking some of them off. Strain the water into another glass and enjoy. Once in a while, here at the ranch, we like to try and to gather anything and everything that is blooming or tastes good. We chop it all up fresh and let it sit in the sun in a jar for a few hours and then chill it. We call it the whole farm tea.

Spicy Beets and Tangelo Salad Recipe!

Here is some stir fried beets and greens recipe that uses beets, chard, spring onion and lemon verbena!

1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 to 12 teaspoon salt (to taste)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons dry sherry
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil, sunflower oil or peanut oil
6 ounces firm tofu, diced (1 cup)
2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 large cloves)
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
2 large or 4 small beets (1/2 pound), peeled and cut in 2-inch julienne (about 2 heaped cups julienne)
1 mediumspring onion. white and light green parts only, cut in half lengthwise, cleaned and sliced thin
1 pound beet greens or chard, stemmed, washed well in 2 changes of water, and coarsely chopped (about 6 cups tightly packed; it’s fine if water remains on the leaves)
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
1 sprig minced lemon verbena
2 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water or stock

1. Combine the sugar and salt in 1 small container, the soy sauce, sherry and sesame oil in another, and place within arm’s reach of your wok. Have the other ingredients in separate containers within arm’s reach of your wok.

2. Heat a 14-inch flat-bottomed wok over high heat until a drop of water evaporates within a second or two when added to the pan. Swirl in the oil by adding it to the sides of the pan and swirling the pan, then add the tofu and spread out in a single layer. Don’t stir for 1 minute, then stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes, until it begins to color. Add the garlic and ginger and stir-fry for no more than 10 seconds. Add the beets and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the onion and stir-fry for 30 seconds to a minute, until it softens, then add the beet greens and salt and sugar. Stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes, until the greens have wilted. Add the sesame seeds, soy sauce, sherry and sesame oil, the beets and lemon verbena and stir-fry for 1 minute. Stir in the dissolved cornstarch and stir-fry until the liquid in the wok glazes the vegetables and tofu, less than a minute. Remove from the heat and serve with rice, noodles or other grains.

Easy Kale Chips Made in the Oven 

Roasted Beets and Fennel Salad Recipe From Tiny Urban Kitchen

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