week 5: lettuce!

Three heads of lettuce!!! Here are some recipes from last week’s CSA share using lettuce (and many other CSA goods).

Grilled Hearts of Romaine with Homemade Parm Herb Dressing and Homemade Croutons
Parmesan Herb Dressing, see recipe below or store bought Caesar 
Parmesan Herb Croutons, see recipe below or store bought
Balsamic Marinated Canned Tomatoes, optional, recipe below
1 head romaine lettuce 
Prepare Croutons, Dressing, and marinade tomatoes. 
Peel leaves from the head of lettuce until you get to the interior heart (reserve leaves for other use). Halve the heart lengthwise.
Prepare gas grill for medium heat. 
Place romaine hearts on the grill for 2-3 minutes. Basically you want to get grill marks, barely cooking the lettuce. 
Top with dressing, croutons, and tomatoes. 
Creamy Parmesan Dressing
1 cup mayo (preferably homemade: see this post for blender mayo recipe) 
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, divided
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 garlic cloves minced
1 lemon, juice only
2 anchovies, optional (but highly recommended)
if not using anchovies, 1 tsp worstchesire sauce
1 Tbsp parsley, minced
salt and pepper to taste
Place all ingredients except parsley in a blender (only 1/4 cup parmesan). Blend until smooth. Stir in parsley and remaining parmesan cheese. Serve over lettuce. 
This dressing will keep for 1 week in the fridge. 
Herbed Croutons
1 lb day old loaf bread (french, country white, sourdough), cut into 1 inch cubes (or smaller if desired)
1 stick butter
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 Tbsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
2/3 cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 375.
Put bread cubs in a large bowl. Heat butter in skillet until begins to brown. Add garlic, stir briefly. Add thyme, stir and remove from heat. Pour over bread cubes and stir to combine, making sure all cubes are covered in butter. Add basil, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Toss. Place on cookie sheet. Bake until golden brown. 
Store in airtight container for up to 2 weeks. 
Balsamic and Basil Marinated Canned Tomatoes
this works with fresh tomatoes also, but since they aren’t ready yet…
1/4 cup canned diced tomatoes
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp oil
1 oz basil, chiffonade (stack, roll, and cut thin strips)
salt and pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes or up to 2-3 days. 
Lettuce Quick Bread
adapted from The Boxing Clever Cookbook
Sounds weird, tastes delicious. Think of it like zucchini bread, but with lettuce. The lettuce is essential, as it adds moisture/water to the recipe. Great toasted with strawberry preserves. 
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup oil, I used safflower oil
1/2 grapefruit, juiced (could use lemon or orange if desired)
4 eggs
3 cups All Purpose Flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinammon
freshly grated nutmeg, 1/4-1/2 tsp, optional
1 tsp salt
2 cups lettuce, finely chopped/shredded
1/2 cup walnuts, coarse chopped. 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Whisk sugar and oil together. Add grapefruit juice. Whisk. Add eggs and whisk well.  In another bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Fold flour mixture into oil sugar mixture just until moistened. Fold in lettuce and nuts. 
Pour batter into greased loaf pan. 
Bake for about 1 hour, until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. 
Garlic Scape Pesto w/Pasta
recipe adapted from Basics with a Twist by Kim A. Sanwald of Brickyard Farms
1 cup garlic scapes, chopped (about 10 scapes)
1/2 cup tightly packed Italian parsley
1/2 cup olive oil
Juice of 1 large lemon (about 3 Tbsp)
1 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
1/4-1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
3/4 lb pasta, I used farfalle 
While pasta is cooking according to directions on package, make pesto.
Place scapes and parsley in food processor. Pulse 3-4 times to combine. With processor running, slowly drizzle in oil. When mixture is smooth, scrape into a bowl. Stir in lemon juice, 1/2 cup cheese, salt and pepper to taste. 
Drain pasta (reserving 1/4 cup pasta cooking water) and run cool water over to stop cooking. 
Combine cooled pasta, pesto, and pasta water in a large bowl. Sprinkle on additional cheese. 
Suggested additions: 1/4 cup oil cured olives chopped, plus 1-2 tbsp oil from olives, 2.5 oz crumbled goat cheese, shredded leftover roast chicken. 
Makes a great lunch with toasted lettuce bread!
Beware: this pesto is very garlicky! 
Sweet and Sour Swiss Chard
adapted from Simply in Season
I like that this recipe uses the stems and leaves. Good over grilled pork chops. 
1/2 lb swiss chard (about 6-7 leaves)
1 1/2 Tbsp oil
1/2 medium red onion
1/4 cup dried cherries (or dried cranberries or raisins)
1 clove garlic
1 1/2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp honey
salt and pepper to taste
Remove chard stems and chop into small pieces. Stack leaves, roll up, and slice into 1 inch strips. Keep stems and leaves seperate. 
In a fry pan heat oil over medium heat, saute onion until softened about 6 minutes. Add chard stems and saute another 2-3 minutes. Add garlic, saute 1 minute. Add cherries, vinegar and honey, stir, cover and cook 5 minutes. Stir in chard leaves. Cover and cook until chard leaves are wilted, about 5 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
 Roasted Broccoli w/ Chipotle Chili Butter
1 canned chipotle chili pepper in adobo sauce
1 tsp adobo sauce
1 tsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter, softened
cumin, salt, pepper to taste
1 head broccoli
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. 
In the bowl of a food processor, place the chili pepper and pulse to chop. Add remaining ingredients and combine. 
In a bowl toss the broccoli with the soften butter spread. 
Place broccoli on a baking sheet.
Bake for 20-25 mintues. Broccoli florets will char a bit on the ends.  Broccoli will be al dente (cooked through but still offering resistance to the bite).
Kale and Black Bean Tacos
This dish can be made vegan, vegetarian, or with meat. I used smoked venison sausage; andouille or chorizo would be good as well. 
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 sausage links, optional
1 shallot, sliced
1 garlic scape, sliced thin
1 green garlic clove, minced (or 2 garlic scapes)
1 green onion, green and white part, sliced
5 Kale leaves, large stems removed, rough chop
2 cups cooked black beans 
1 pickled jalapeno, chopped
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder, optional
salt and pepper
6-8 small flour tortillas
Optional Toppings: sour cream, shredded pepper jack cheese or other cheese, spring salsa verde (see recipe below), chipotle chili peppers, adobo sauce
In a fry pan with olive oil, saute sausage if using until browned, add shallot saute until softened 3-4 minutes, add scape and saute another 2-3 minutes. Add kale leaves, green onion, garlic, black beans, pickled jalapeno, cumin, salt and pepper. Saute until kale leaves soften and wilt, about 7-10 minutes. Serve in flour tortillas with optional toppings. 
Spring Salsa Verde
adapted from In Season Cookbook by Sarah Raven
So, tomatoes are not ready, tomatillos also are not ready, but I’m ready for salsa…no problem, whip up some spring salsa verde for those kale tacos!
1 bunch parsley
1 bunch cilantro
4 cornichon pickles, rinsed
1 Tbsp capers, drained (about 30)
1/2-3/4 cup olive oil
juice of 1/2 lime
salt and pepper to taste
In a food processor (or with a sharp knife) pulse the parsley, cilantro, cornichons, and capers. Add the olive oil (start with 1/2 cup) and lime juice. Pulse to combine. Taste. Add more olive oil if desired. Salt and Pepper to taste. 
This entry was posted in basil, broccoli, chard, cilantro, kale, lettuce, parsley, scapes. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to week 5: lettuce!

  1. Katie Brandt says:

    Just made the lettuce quick bread and it’s delicious!

  2. Pingback: Cilantro | Groundswell Cooking

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