Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Fall/Winter CSA Week 10 and Mustard Green Pesto

There was lots of action on the farm today.

When I went out to let me chickens out this morning, my ducks were avoiding the pond in a rather uncharacteristic manner.
As I approached the pond, I heard a splash. I was too late to catch of what it was so I hung around and waited.  I pretty much knew who to expect.
Then he appeared and yes, it was just who I thought. A muskrat.

This of course isn't a good thing for anybody, my pond included. Fortunately when I got home from deliveries, Mollie and I rounded up the ducks quite easily and they are in their winter abode for now. Safe and out of harm's way.

It was tough loading up the greens with the chickens carousing in the driveway.  They spotted the greens in the baskets and I nearly wondered if they were going to pop up into my car and devour the goodies.

Hard to figure when the grass is still green, but I guess all like variety in our diets.

Mollie was thrilled...thrilled I say, to be delivering vegetables with me because of a day off from school.
You can see the excitement in her eyes. My girls will most likely take over Tree and Twig soon. It's what they aspire to. Umm, yes. Right-ee-o.

I remember years ago when I spoke to a high school class I bored the kids beyond belief. Finally I asked the class if anyone wanted to be a farmer when they finished school. They looked at me like my head was a cauliflower. I was just that weird to suggest such a thing.
No hands went up. "Why not?" I asked. The work is too hard and the money too little was the unanimous reply.
I suspect my girls feel the same way.  It's just not what most kids think about doing.

Note the greens in the baskets today. It is going to be a green Christmas after all!
For a little info on the nutritional value of mustard greens, look here.

Some greens you may recognize, some you may not. It is a nice versatile mix of tastes and textures.
There are still beets coming out of the garden and they are delicious roasted with the stems on. Sweet and earthy.
If anyone has any favourite ways to prepare these greens and you'd like to share, I'd love to hear from you. 
In the meantime, Mustard Green Pesto is something just a bit different. 
This recipe is from Bon Appetit.

Mustard Green Pesto Pasta with Mushrooms



  • 1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup pecans
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3 cups (loosely packed) coarsely chopped mustard greens


  • 8 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
  • 1 pound fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 pound fusilli (spiral-shaped pasta) or rotelle
  • 1/2 cup coarsely grated smoked mozzarella cheese (about 2 ounces)



  • Blend 1/2 cup oil, pecans, and garlic in processor until finely chopped. Add vinegar, then Parmesan; process to blend. Add mustard greens alternately with remaining 1/3 cup oil in 2 additions each; puree until almost smooth. Season pesto with salt and pepper. Transfer to small bowl. DO AHEAD Can be made 6 hours ahead. Cover; chill. Let stand at room temperature 1 hour before using.


  • Melt butter in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and sage and sauté just until mushrooms wilt, about 3 minutes. Add wine and sauté until mushrooms are tender, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain. Return pasta to pot. Add pesto and mushrooms; toss to blend. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer pasta to bowl. Sprinkle with smoked mozzarella cheese and serve.


bluelacedredhead said...

Don't feel bad that your girls don't want to work the land. My Son was amazing with animals. Now that he owns his own home, he doesn't even have pets, nor does he have a veggie garden. The good news? He and My DIL subscribe to a local CSA. The lessons stuck on some level and I'm positive that your's will too!

Linda said...

I am sure you're right. I know my oldest daughter has a hard time buying veggies when she is away at school-she's too used to mine. I'd be really happy if they both decided to have a garden when they are older and have a place of their own. I kinda think that might happen!
Thanks for reading!