Sunshine for Dinner Rotating Header Image

June, 2010:

Meet a friend – in Ola Mae’s Kitchen

Boiled Greens with Lima Beans, photo courtesy Joseph Knight

A must-read:  Ola Mae’s Kitchen, the food blog of a dear friend and brave girl who learned her way around the hot, dusty roads of southwest Arkansas, then made her way to the hot, grimy streets of New York City.  She hasn’t forgotten how to eat her veggies, that’s for sure!  She is sharing an original recipe with the Sunshine For Dinner crowd – Boiled Greens with Lima Beans.  Thanks so much, Kim!   Enjoy!

Boiled Greens with Lima Beans

A delicious one-plate meal

  • 1/2 pound (8 ounces) dry Lima beans
  • 1 medium field tomato, diced as small as your knife skills will allow
  • 1/2 medium sweet onion (such as Vidalia or Walla Walla), finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup (approx. 20-25 stems) finely chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch of dried oregano
  • 1 small jalapeño pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 small lime, halved crosswise
  • 4 cups (32 oz.) vegetable broth
  • 8 cups fresh dinosaur kale*, rinsed and stemmed (approx. 1 large bunch)
  • 8 cups fresh flat-leaf spinach, rinsed and stemmed (approx. 1 large bunch)
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • Cotija cheese**, crumbled coarsely

Preparing the beans: In a medium-size heavy-bottomed pot, soak the beans in 6 cups of water for at least 5 hours or overnight. (Beans may split, but that’s alright.) After the soaking, drain the beans and cover again with 6 cups of fresh water. Cover and cook on medium-high heat for 30 to 45 minutes or until desired texture is reached. Any foam that forms on the water’s surface should be spooned away and discarded. Salt may be added to the cooking water after 25 minutes. Do not drain.

After the beans are set to soak: Combine the tomato, onion, cilantro, garlic, oil, and oregano in a medium bowl. Stir to combine. Add the jalapeño, a little at a time, stirring and tasting after each addition to make sure you don’t add too much. Slowly squeeze 1/2 the lime over the bowl, again stirring and tasting as you go. Finally, add salt and pepper in the same way as described above. Cover and set aside to allow the flavors to meld.

During the cooking of the beans: Pour the broth into a large, non-aluminum pot and bring to a boil. Add the kale and cook for 12-15 minutes. Add the spinach and cook 5 minutes more or until all greens are tender. Do not drain.

Serving: Using tongs or a fork, evenly divide the greens among three bowls. Spoon beans over each helping of greens. Top each serving with the tomato mixture and sprinkle each generously with cheese. Use the remaining 1/2 lemon to add a freshening squeeze of juice to each bowl.

Serves 3

Note: The cooking water of the beans should be discarded, but the broth can be strained and poured into a container and stored in the freezer. Use it to enrich the cooking water the next time you make pasta or rice.

*Dinosaur kale can also be found under the names Tuscan kale, black cabbage, cavolo nero, and laciniato.

**Cotija cheese is a sharp, salty white grating cheese that softens but doesn’t melt when heated. Look for it in Hispanic markets. Substitutes: Parmesan OR Romano OR anejo cheese OR feta cheese OR nutritional yeast. – Cook’s Thesaurus

Boiled Greens with Lima Beans from Ola Mae's kitchen, photo courtesy Joseph Knight

http://olamaeskitchen.wordpress.com/2010/06/30/boiled-greens-with-lima-beans/

Share this:

On the menu – June 28, 2010

Sweet Corn
Farm fresh eggs
Blueberries
Tomatoes – slicing
Blackberries
Eggplant
Summer squash
Bell pepper and sweet banana pepper
Peaches
Rosemary
Basil

Share this:

On the menu – June 21, 2010

Sweet Corn
Farm fresh eggs
Blueberries
Tomatoes – slicing
Cherry tomatoes
Summer squash
Bell Pepper
Peaches
Cucumber
Red onions
Rosemary and Thyme
Basil

Share this:

On the menu – June 14, 2010

Fresh Garlic

Farm fresh eggs

Blackberries

Green Onions

Tomatoes

Summer squash – straightneck yellow, green zucchini and ’Gold Rush’ zucchini

Bell Pepper

Peaches ‘Harbelle’

Cabbage

Rosemary and Thyme

Basil

Potatoes ‘Red La Sota’

Share this:

Making Peach Jam for the freezer

Pomona’s Universal Pectin is a lovely product that allows the making of jam or jelly with any amount (even NONE)  of any sweetener you like.  It is available in the Texarkana area at Granary Street health food store, 3425 New Boston Road
Texarkana, TX (903-831-5940), at least I bought some there a while back.

The jam that I made today had:

12 cups of mashed up peaches (plus juice of one lemon)

2 cups of sugar.

The quantity of fruit used the whole box of pectin – this is not a product like SureJell, where you use the whole box at one time – but you could have made three 4cup batches of jam or jelly with  one box of pectin.

For comparison, using low sugar SureJell, the recipe would have been:

12 cups peaches

9 cups sugar.

Just for fun, I looked up the recipe with regular, full sugar SureJell (brace yourself):

12 cups peaches

15 cups sugar.

Now, it is fun to knock sugar, and my jam does taste really fresh because the fruit flavor comes through, but let’s look for a minute at the function of sugar in “preserves” – our jams and jellies.  Sugar is a powerful antimicrobial agent in our canned goods, keeping deadly bacteria at bay.  These low sugar jams do not have enough sugar to act as a preservative.   In my opinion they are not suitable for hot pack canning.  That is why I am using this for freezer jam.  Furthermore, they may not have adequate acid for safe water bath canning.  Please refer to  your local county home economist or some “real” recipe, as in the packaging of your pectin, to insure safety.

These jams and jellies will not keep in the fridge for an eternity like your jar of smucker’s grape jelly, either.  They need to be eaten up within a week of thawing or opening the jar – no problem!  On toast, on biscuits, stirred into yogurt, warmed and poured over ice cream – you will find a way.

Another function of sugar in jellying and jamming is to hold color and brighten flavor.  Over time, low sugar preserves may darken.  This is natural and is not an indicator that they are unsafe, but if you show them to your grandma, who used 15 cups of sugar in her brilliant, bright jam, she probably won’t be too impressed by your dull orange peach jam.  That’s ok, we know why it isn’t technicolor.   And while jams with no sweetener are possible, adding  just a little does improve the flavor – for an all fruit jam, use apple juice concentrate as the sweetener.  In fact, we all think another cup of sugar would have intensified the flavor of our peach jam a little, so next time I will probably adjust the quantity.

peach freezer jam

peach freezer jam in bags

So, here is the jam.  My big revolutionary idea was to pack it for the freezer in pint size freezer bags instead of jars.  I run short on jars, and I plan to just squeeze it out of the bags into a clean jar to put in the fridge when I want to eat it.  The bags fit better in the freezer and I don’t have to worry about breakage.  I think it will work!

If anyone on my Sunshine for Dinner subscription wants a 1/2 bushel of peaches, call me, 870-653-3062.  I can bring it to you for $30.00.


Share this:

On the menu – June 7, 2010

a garden morning

a garden morning, last weekend

The first delivery of the season!  It feels good to be handing over bags of goodies again – everyone is smiling.

Fresh Garlic
Farm fresh eggs
Blackberries
Cucumber
Summer squash – straightneck yellow, green zucchini and ’Gold Rush’ zucchini
Bell Pepper
Peaches – cling type
Sweet Corn ‘G-90’
Rosemary and Thyme
Basil
Potatoes ‘Red La Sota”

This week we have a recipe from Jameson’s Orchard in Nashville, AR, where our peaches were grown.  I ate one of these muffins at the market on Saturday, and it was delicious!

Peach Muffins

3 c unbleached flour
1 1/2 t salt
1 t baking soda
2 c sugar
Pinch of nutmeg
4 eggs, well beaten, or substitute 1 c sourdough starter
1 c oil
1 t vanilla
Optional seasonings:  1/2 t ginger, 1/2 t almond extract, or 1/2 t cinnamon
2 1/2 c diced fresh peaches or WELL DRAINED canned peaches, diced

Mix the dry ingredients and make a well in the middle.  Gently stir in the egg, oil and seasoning.  Fold in the peaches.  Spoon 1/3 c batter into lined muffin pans, makes 24 muffins.  Bake at 350 F for 25-30 minutes. For peach bread, pour batter into two generously greased bread pans and bake for 1 hour at 350 F.

Share this:

Page optimized by WP Minify WordPress Plugin