Archive for June, 2012

Vote for us on the Mission Small Business Grant by Chase & Living Social!!

Please remember to VOTE for us using your Facebook Page for the Mission Small Business Grant Program!  We need 140 more votes by Saturday in order to apply for the grant.  Go to:  http://www.missionsmallbusiness.com and scroll down on the right-hand side to login & support.  Login using your Facebook page and then search for French Prairie Gardens in Oregon.  Click on Support and then feel free to share that you voted with your friends on Facebook so that we have a chance to apply for this grant!!!

The 4th of July is almost here!  We at French Prairie Gardens love this time of year!  For the St. Paul community the 4th is always Rodeo time, and we as owners wouldn’t miss the Rodeo for anything!  If you haven’t had a chance to enjoy it you should take a trip down to catch a show!  And don’t miss the July 4th Rodeo Parade!  Our owners, John and Karren have been putting on a spectacular parade for over 10 years!  If you are looking for things to do before you make the show, come on in to French Prairie Gardens!  We are kicking off our Happy Hour On Wednesday July 4th from 12pm-7pm!

A Note regarding  NEXT WEEK’S CSA PICK-UP::  Since July 4th is a Wednesday this year, Deliveries will take place Tuesday July 3rd. If you pick-up at French Prairie Gardens you can pick-up Tuesday afternoon or on Wednesday from 12pm-7pm.

Here’s a couple recipes that I have already used on the blog, but only some of you got beets!  Also, looking for a patriotic recipe for your 4th of July picnic?  Check out the recipe below for Sugar Cookie Strawberry Pizza!

Roasting Beets:

Simply Peel and Slice beets into 1/4 inch slices. Toss with oil of your choice and roast for 25 min in a 375 degree oven.

*Mixed Green Salad with Beets & Pecans*

2 beets
1/3 cup broken pecans
1/2 to 3/4 pound salad greens, lettuce or spinach
1 ounce goat cheese, crumbled (about 1/3 cup)
1 to 2 T chopped fresh herbs (chives, tarragon or parsley)
Dressing:
1-1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
2 T sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar

1 small garlic clove, minced or pressed, optional

Salt, freshly ground pepper

1/2 to 1 tsp Dijon mustard, or to taste

3 T walnut oil
1/4 cup olive oil

 

Heat oven to 425 degrees.

For salad, cut away beet leaves by slicing across top end of beet, about 1/2 inch above where stems and root meet (save leaves for another purpose or place in with the spinach and salad greens). Follow directions listed above for roasting the beets.

Toast pecans in dry skillet over medium heat, shaking pan or stirring nuts, until they begin to smell toasty and are lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer them immediately to a plate or bowl.

Toss beets with salad greens, pecans, goat cheese and fresh herbs.

For dressing: Mix together vinegars, salt and pepper to taste, garlic and mustard. Whisk in oils. Taste. If you want dressing to be a bit more tart, add another 1 teaspoon vinegar. Toss with salad and serve.

Serves 4 – 6

*Sugar Cookie Strawberry Pizza*

Recipe Courtesy of All Recipes

1/2 c. butter, softened
3/4 c. white sugar
1 egg
1 1/4 c. flour
1 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 c. Sliced Strawberries or variety of fruit
1 (8 oz) package cream cheese
1/2 c. white sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and 3/4 cup sugar until smooth. Mix in egg. combine the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt; stir into the creamed mixture until just blended. Press dough into an ungreased pizza pan.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool.
  4. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese with 1/2 cup sugar and vanilla until light. Spread on cooled crust.
  5. Arrange desired fruit on top of filling, and chill.

Strawberry Season is almost gone! ;(

We love Strawberry season, because there are so many great ways to enjoy them!  Some of you may have some leftover so I have included a great smoothie recipe for a quick snack or a late night treat!  It uses coconut milk, which is a delicious favorite around our house, with a natural sweetness to it, you don’t even need to add sugar!

Katey has a 2 year old that is usually pretty good about eating dinner, but there are certain veggies that she doesn’t enjoy.  This week she made the Creamed Spinach recipe that even her two year old couldn’t leave on the plate!

The third recipe is a Sugar Snap Pea Salad that you could use with either a mixture of Sugar Snap and Snow Peas or just one!  Even though the Sugar Snap Peas are a wonderful sweet treat to snack on, I still am finding it hard to go through them!  So here’s a great recipe that I am going to have with Turkey Burgers tonight!!

All this sunshine, means that there are more veggies on their way!  Unfortunately it is almost the end of Strawberry season, but we have lots of delicious fruits that are on their way to getting ripe!

Some of you may be looking for a date night…check out our Grilling in the Garden Dinners!  They take place the 3rd Thursday of the month June through September!  Our first dinner is tomorrow!  Call now to make your reservations at 503-633-8445, cost $30 per person!  The weather looks like it is going to be amazing!  You will have a chance to enjoy some of the great recipes that we make for our families!

 

 

Our June Grilling in the Garden Menu:

•Fresh Spinach Salad topped with fresh picked Strawberries, garden onions, crumbled goat cheese, & balsamic dressing.

• Grilled Stuffed Pork Chops with farm grown apples & goat cheese filling with a side of Sautéed Snap Peas and Pilaf.

• Individual Strawberry Tarts served with vanilla ice cream.

Strawberry Banana Smoothie
Author: Brianne @ Cupcakes & Kale Chips
Serves: 1-2
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 frozen very ripe banana, cut into chunks
  • 1 cup coconut milk
Directions
  1. Place all of the ingredients into a blender, Vita-Mix, or Magic Bullet, and blend until smooth. Freeze Strawberries or Bananas to make the smoothie thicker.

Creamed Spinach

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 10 ounces fresh spinach, washed and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons chicken broth (or water)
  • 1/4 cup half-and-half
  • 1/4 cup grated Mozzarella cheese (Melissa d’Arabian also uses leftover string cheese)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

In a large sauté pan, melt butter with olive oil. Sauté chopped shallot over medium heat until soft and caramelized. Stir occasionally to avoid burning, about 7-8 minutes.Add chopped spinach, and toss with caramelized shallots. Add chicken broth, and increase heat to medium high. Cover pan with lid, and let spinach steam down for 3-4 minutes.Remove lid, and add in half-and-half. Allow the liquid to reduce by a third, stirring to keep from burning.

Once reduced, turn heat down to low, and gently stir in the Mozzarella cheese until it starts melting. Add the Parmesan cheese, and stir just until it starts to melt then turn the heat off. (Note: The cheese will continue melting).

Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve.

Sugar Snap Pea Salad with Mint, Almonds, and Caramelized Onions

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

1 pound sugar snap peas
1/2 medium onion
1 handful fresh mint leaves (about 1/4 cup chopped)
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon zest (from 1 lemon)
2 tablespoons lemon juice (from ½ lemon)
Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation

  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a rolling boil.
  2. Meanwhile, chop the onion into half moon slivers. Allow to caramelize over medium-high heat in an oiled sautee pan (about 25 minutes).
  3. Wash the sugar snap peas and de-string them if necessary, snapping the tip and removing the fibrous strand running lengthwise. If the snap peas are young though, you won’t have to do this. Drop the sugar snap peas into the pot of boiling water. Cook for 2 minutes, then strain out and drop them into an ice bath.
  4. Once the snap peas are cooled, strain them out and place half of them in a large bowl. Shell the other half, adding the peas to the bowl. Julienne the remaining pod shells lengthwise and add to the bowl.
  5. Roughly chop the mint leaves. Toast and roughly chop the almonds. Add mint, almonds, and caramelized onions to the bowl.
  6. Mix together the rice vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice and zest, and drizzle over the salad. Toss well, add salt and pepper to taste. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

Until next week!

– Farmer Stacy 🙂

Snow Peas & Snap Peas are here!!

We have been told by many CSA members over the years that every Wednesday is like Christmas to open the bag and see what’s new from the farm!  This year, in an effort to come up with better recipes and figure out how to utilize all the produce in the CSA bags, two of us owners decided that we should prepare two extra CSA bags for us.  That way we can take photos and come up with uses to blog about here and make useful suggestions for our CSA members.

A little background: Katey Meza, one of our owners has two children, a 2 year old and a new 7 week old!  I am Stacy Bunke, known as Farmer Stacy in these blogs, am married, my husband and my dog Lola are using all of the contents of our CSA bag.  Lola only eats the occasional Strawberry or snap pea :).  We both have different diets, which we thought would make putting together recipes a fun and exciting challenge!  My husband and I eat Paleo, while the rest of my family including Katey eats the Standard American Diet.  We are both really active, while the Meza’s enjoy running and the Bunke’s are members at Crossfit Oregon City.

Onto the fun and exciting recipes!  I found that I wasn’t very good at eating my spinach, Popeye would not be proud.  So this week I decided to throw in an easy Spinach Recipe.  Enjoy your Snap Peas, Snow Peas, Carrots, & Spinach this week with these fun and exciting recipes!!

Snow Pea & Carrot Saute

 Snow Pea & Carrot Saute

5 Servings Prep/Total Time: 20 min.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh snow peas
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 medium carrots, julienned
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper

Directions

  • In a large skillet, saute snow peas in butter for 3 minutes. Add
  • carrots and garlic; saute 1-2 minutes longer or until vegetables are
  • crisp-tender. Add remaining ingredients; heat through. Yield: 5
  • servings.

Garlic Sauteed Spinach

Garlic_Sauteed_Spinach

Ingredients (serves 4):

1 1/2 pounds baby spinach leaves
2 tablespoons good olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped garlic (6 cloves)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Lemon
Sea or kosher salt, optional

Directions:

Rinse the spinach well in cold water to make sure it’s very clean. Spin it dry in a salad spinner, leaving just a little water clinging to the leaves.

In a very large pot or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil and saute the garlic over medium heat for about 1 minute, but not until it’s browned. Add all the spinach, the salt, and pepper to the pot, toss it with the garlic and oil, cover the pot, and cook it for 2 minutes. Uncover the pot, turn the heat on high, and cook the spinach for another minute, stirring with a wooden spoon, until all the spinach is wilted. Using a slotted spoon, lift the spinach to a serving bowl and top with the butter, a squeeze of lemon, and a sprinkling of sea or kosher salt. Serve hot.

Enjoy!

From Ina Garten

SUGAR SNAP PEAS WITH HAZELNUT BUTTER AND SAGE

Submitted by Diana Shaw

Serves: 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes

Because you must judge the color of the butter as it cooks, avoid dark colored pans like unlined anodized aluminum or non-stick for this recipe.

  • 2 tablespoons chopped hazelnuts
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 lb Sugar Snap Peas
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • ground black pepper
  • 3 Slices of chopped Bacon

Toast hazelnuts over medium heat in small skillet, shaking pan often to promote even cooking, until just fragrant, 3-4 minutes.

Heat butter over medium heat in medium saute pan until it browns to color of brown sugar and smells nutty, about 5 minutes. Take care not to burn.  Fry Bacon, add peas, and saute until cooked through then add sage, and nuts; toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste; serve immediately.

I hope you enjoyed this weeks share of recipes!  Until next week!

– Farmer Stacy 🙂

Two Great Recipes for CSA Week #1

One thing that we love about this time of year is the fresh produce that is just starting to ripen in the fields!  I have really learned to love beets!  This is a simple and easy way to roast them, quickly for a salad.  Put gloves on when peeling if you are worried about getting your hands stained.  Feel free to use the beet greens for your salad also!  They are just a delicious as the bulbs!  Some of you may be getting them next week in your bags instead.  Mother Nature didn’t want all of them to ripen just yet. For those of you that didn’t get beets…skip down to the Strawberry Spinach Salad Recipe!

Roasting Beets:

Simply Peel and Slice beets into 1/4 inch slices. Toss with oil of your choice and roast for 25 min in a 375 degree oven.

*Mixed Green Salad with Beets & Pecans*
2-3 beets
1/3 cup broken pecans
1/2 to 3/4 pound salad greens or spinach
1 ounce goat cheese, crumbled (about 1/3 cup)
1 to 2 T chopped fresh herbs (chives, tarragon or parsley)
Dressing:
1-1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
2 T sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar

Salt, freshly ground pepper

1 small garlic clove, minced or pressed, optional
1/2 to 1 tsp Dijon mustard, or to taste
3 T walnut oil
1/4 cup olive oil

Heat oven to 425 degrees.

For salad, cut away beet leaves by slicing across top end of beet, about 1/2 inch above where stems and root meet (save leaves for another purpose or place in with the spinach and salad greens). Follow directions listed above for roasting the beets.

Toast pecans in dry skillet over medium heat, shaking pan or stirring nuts, until they begin to smell toasty and are lightly browned, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer them immediately to a plate or bowl.

Toss beets with salad greens, pecans, goat cheese and fresh herbs.

For dressing: Mix together vinegars, salt and pepper to taste, garlic and mustard. Whisk in oils. Taste. If you want dressing to be a bit more tart, add another 1 teaspoon vinegar. Toss with salad and serve.

Serves 4 – 6

Strawberry Spinach Salad

  • 1 bunch spinach, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
  • 2 cups sliced strawberries
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup white sugar (sub honey if you are avoiding sugar)
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons poppy seeds

Directions

  1. In a large bowl, toss together the spinach and strawberries.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, vinegar, sugar, paprika, sesame seeds, and poppy seeds. Pour over the spinach and strawberries, and toss to coat.

See last week’s blog below called “Strawberries Have Arrived!!!” for: Balsamic Black Pepper Strawberries recipe and descriptions of all of our great Strawberry Varieties!

 

Strawberries Have arrived!!!

June is always a great time for farm fresh produce!  We always get so happy when we see those fresh strawberries ripen on those bushes!  Last week, we started our first picking of Strawberries!  We have many great varieties for fresh eating.  Two of our first varieties are the Honeoeye and the Earliglow.

The Honeoeye berry is a large fruit with a beautiful red color. It is firm, red clear through and is great for pies.

The Earliglow strawberry is uniform in shape and color. It is considered the best tasting berry on the market! Great for fresh eating, or baked goods!

Favorites that we will start getting in are the Shuksan, Benton, and the Hood Strawberry varieties.

The Shuksan strawberry plants have large, glossy bright red fruit with slightly indented yellowish red seeds. The fruit has medium-firm flesh with good flavor. It is good for fresh eating and excellent for freezing and preserves.

The Benton strawberry fruit is very bright, has excellent keeping quality, is conic in shape, and they have good flavor.

The Hood strawberry has large, bright, glossy red fruit turning dark when fully ripe. Fine, sweet flavor, excellent fruit quality. Excellent for preserves and jams, good for all other uses.

Stay tuned for more great new varieties and see what’s growing next!!!

Try this great Strawberry Recipe that is simple and easy!

Balsamic Black Pepper Strawberries

Balsamic vinegar and black pepper intensify the flavor of strawberries and bring out their sweetness. These berries are great with both sweet and savory dishes. Try them atop field greens with goat cheese, or serve them for dessert over ice cream or pound cake.

Serves 4 to 6.

Tip: The better the quality of the balsamic vinegar and berries you use, the better this recipe will be.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 quart (16 ounces) ripe strawberries, rinsed, hulled, and sliced
  • 3 tablespoons sugar (if you like things really sweet) *optional
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons good-quality balsamic vinegar
  • Freshly ground coarse black pepper

Preparation:

Place the sliced berries in a medium non-reactive bowl (such as glass).

Sprinkle the berries with the sugar and balsamic vinegar, and toss gently to coat. Allow the berries to macerate in the vinegar and sugar mixture for about 15 minutes.

Add 4 to 5 grinds of coarse black pepper to the berries, and toss to coat. Allow the flavors to blend about 5 minutes more before serving.

Serve the berries over salad, ice cream, or toasted pound cake. Or, try them in shortcakes, or serve in dishes with a bit of whipped cream or lightly sweetened mascarpone.