Sunday is for Spatchcocking, 2nd CSA Box and Romesco Sauce

As you know from last week’s post, I collected my first CSA box from Growing Things Farm a week ago Sunday.  I was committed to arriving earlier to the Ballard farmers market to pick up my second box. Long periods of darkness and rain in the region has meant a tough time for farmers this summer, especially berry producers.  In fact, the weather has been “downright scary,” according to Michaele the farmer at Growing Things Farm.  No berries again this week, but there were different greens than the first box, and lovely, fresh eggs.  I’m hoping for berries next week so I’m crossing everything for good luck and sunshine.

55 degrees and rain...Growing Things Farm at Ballard Market, Sunday, June 20

Here’s an inventory of my CSA Box, Week 2, along with ideas for incorporating into meals this week:

  • Green Cabbage…stewed with slab bacon, broth and onions on Sunday night
  • Curly Green Kale…most likely sauteed with garlic, olive oil and red pepper flakes and served with pasta for weeknight dinner
  • Eggs...Mexican eggs…poached eggs in chipotle chile spike tomatoes for Sunday brunch
  • Broccoli– roasted with olive oil, salt and pepper and served with Romesco sauce for weeknight meal
  • Kohlrabi- thinking about experimenting and preparing Bengali-style cooked in yogurt a la Anjum Anand…(see http://www.cookingchanneltv.com/recipes/bengali-style-aubergine-cooked-in-yogurt-recipe/index.html)
  • Peas (in the pod)- I love these cut up in salads, particularly cold potato salad dressed in a sauce of heavy cream, dijon mustard, scallions (from the garden) and dill

I still have some lettuces left over from last week’s box, as well as lettuces, cilantro and scallions ripe and ready from my garden, so I was relieved that no more lettuce appeared in my CSA box this week.

While I was at the market, I made an impulse decision to purchase a 4 lb. whole, fresh, organic chicken from Stokesberry Sustainable Farm in Olympia.  I had no agenda planned for this bird but considering this fowl had never been frozen, I was compelled to cook it when I got home.

I heard about spatchcocking a couple of years ago but I finally got around to it Sunday.  I’ve been watching reruns of Gourmet’s Diary of a Foodie.  The “Montreal” show included Paul Grimes demonstrating how to spatchcock a whole chicken (Recipe at http://www.gourmet.com/recipes/diaryofafoodie/2009/04/chicken-with-black-pepper-maple-sauce…confirming once more that Conde Nast demonstrated poor judgement by terminating Gourmet magazine).  Incredible results from spending just over an hour to make, prep to finish.  Dinner for two consisted of spatchcock chicken with braised cabbage and cous cous on Sunday night.  Leftover thigh and leg meat for chicken enchiladas verde last night.  Cassius was rewarded with a few scraps for being gorgeous.  I highly recommend spatchcocking if you aren’t squeamish about preparing meat. Applying kitchen shears to a whole bird carcass is a sensory experience like no other.

first try doesn't work- top pan should fit snug. Needs more weight, too.

Best solution. Cast iron grill pan weighted down by heavy mortar and pestle

Spatchcock complete

Lastly, I had been wanting to make Romesco Sauce to eat “tapas-style” with charred leaks or spring onions.  The recipe was featured in a recent Saveur magazine (http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Grilled-Green-Onions-with-Romesco) and I was really curious.  I wasn’t about to make another trip to the store for Ancho chile, but I had some roasted red peppers and a couple of raw red bell peppers that needed to be eaten in the fridge.  So I broiled and skinned those last two peppers and then made up this recipe for Romesco Sauce using only ingredients I had in my fridge and pantry.  I think it turned out really well.  Try it!

Romesco Sauce

makes a little over 1 pint

Romesco is ready to eat

  • 1 T blanched sliced almonds
  • 1 slice Pain Du George bread, stale, crust removed (any stale, crusty bread will do)
  • 5 small garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 tsp each salt and pepper
  • 6 roasted red bell peppers, flesh only (skinned, seeded)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil

In the bowl of a food processor, combine almonds, bread, garlic, salt & pepper.  Pulse until bread and garlic are minced.  Add the peppers and process for twenty more seconds to mix.  While processor is running, drizzle olive into the bowl to fully incorporate into the sauce.  Pour sauce into a bowl for dipping or into a sealable container to store in the refrigerator for later. Enjoy!

Cassius hopes I will drop the chicken

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