The heat wave combined with the long days of the solstice produced a massive growth spurt in the fields. The soil is warm to the touch and the plants are clearly relishing it. We harvested the garlic last week and it is curing in the newly shaded hoop house. It is hard to believe how cool it was in there even on the hottest days; the shade cloth is amazing.
We cut hay last week that cured nicely in the heat. Now we are fortunate to be bringing it in during these cooler days. After the mad dash that haying is back east, it feels rather luxurious to not have to worry about rain.
This week's pick list:
- Snap peas
- Garlic Scapes
- Tokyo Bekana
Grilled Vegetable Vinaigrette, from food52.com
Author Notes: Feel free to use any combination of grilled vegetables and herbs you've got, but this one is especially good. As Bloomfield writes, "This is a chunky dressing that makes each bite of a salad taste different. The dressing is also good spooned over a steak and sprinkled with crumbled blue cheese, or dolloped onto a lamb chop with some feta." We also loved it spooned onto toast, stirred into pasta or potatoes or tuna salad. Makes 2 cups
- 1 medium fennel bulb, outer layer, stalks and fronds removed, root end trimmed of brown bits
- 6 scallions
- 1 frisee (outermost leaves removed, bottom trimmed of brown bits, cut in half)
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1 teaspoon Maldon or another flaky sea salt
- 1 garlic scape, very finely chopped
- A five-finger pinch of fresh mint leaves
- A five-finger pinch of fresh marjoram leaves
Halve the fennel bulb lengthwise and cut each halfway through the root nub (so the wedges stay intact) into about 1-inch-thick wedges.
Heat a grill or heavy grill pan over high heat until it’s good and hot, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add fennel, scallions, and frisee. Cook, turning vegetables over occasionally, until fennel and scallions are lightly charred in spots and cooked through, but still have a little bite.
As they finish, pop the grilled vegetables into a bowl and cover until they’ve cooled fully. They’ll steam a bit and cook some more as they cool. Once they’ve all cooled, chop the vegetables into a mix of about 1/2-inch pieces, some smaller and some larger.
Pop the vegetables back into the bowl, add the oil, vinegar, salt and garlic, and stir really well. Toss the mint and marjoram together on a cutting board, give them a rough chop and stir them into the dressing.