Siena Farms Blog
Our gorgeous little acorn squash are just perfect this time of year. They’re great with a holiday meal, but they also make a hearty, easy weeknight dinner by stuffing them with all kinds of things. If you’ve got some turkey-day friends who don’t eat meat, think about stuffing one of these li’l guys with something delicious and calling it a day. What a fantastic way to say “forget the turkey… eat this!” Fill up your recipe box with some of these gorgeous recipes we’ve found!
Brussels sprouts are really such a cute food – what else looks like a miniature form of another veggie (cabbage)?!? Many believe Brussels sprouts to have originated in Brussels, Belgium, but there are also food historians who believe they were cultivated in Ancient Rome. Brussels are also members of the brassica family (think broccoli, cabbage, collards, and kohlrabi) and are packed with lots of good nutrients like vitamins A & C and folic acid. Soooo… while we might eat them ’cause they’re just plain tasty, you can always eat ‘em because you know they’re fantastically good for you. Either way, get inspired to make a dazzling Thanksgiving dinner table!
- With shallots and mushrooms? Yes, please!!!
- Do you like it hot? Try this version with a balance of sweet honey and spicy sriracha!
- Not a huge Brussels lover – or maybe the kids aren’t…? Try this smoky gratin made with milk, not cream.
- To mix it up, how about not cooking them at all and trying this Brussels sprout and apple salad?
We’re in love with kale, but what can we say, we’re farmers and we love to grow everything! Lots of people get stuck thinking of kale being braised, enriching soups, and being made into chips and while those are all great things they’re not everything you can do with kale. This Thanksgiving, let it be part of your show stopping meal in a new way with these tasty tasty inspirations.
- Combine kale with healthy (and delicious!) quinoa for a side dish that packs a punch!
- How about a warm salad with crispy kale leaves, beets, and walnuts?
- Consider braising it with pancetta, and caramelized onions… a flavorful twist on a classic slow-cooked kale.
- Leftover turkey? No problem! Try this one-dish casserole with turkey instead of chicken.
Ignore that gnarly, funky exterior and get into what’s INSIDE that celery root bulb! Celery root (also known as celeriac) is actually not the root of a celery plant, although it is in the same family. It grows wild throughout the Mediterranean and parts of Northern Europe and is a wonderful, versatile veggie. You can enjoy it raw, cooked, pureed, roasted, and in soups, too. It’s celery flavor has an almost creaminess to it that makes it a unique, and fantastic fall flavor!
- Celery root makes a fabulous gratin… be sure to use your SF leeks in this recipe, too. Who doesn’t love cheese?
- New to celery root? Try it in a puree and if you’re timid, blend with cooked potatoes the first time to soften the flavor.
- Grab a head of our Savoy Cabbage and shave it all up with a walnut vinaigrette. Mmm!
- This recipe suggests chicken, but if you’ve got leftover turkey next week give it a go!
Now wait, we know what you’re thinking. When you were growing up kohlrabi wasn’t a Thanksgiving classic… but maybe it should have been! Kohlrabi has actually been cultivated for over 2,000 years and is a part of the brassica family (think broccoli and cauliflower). People tend to describe the flavor like that of a broccoli stem – just a bit sweeter and more mild. Here are some ideas of what to do with YOUR Siena Farms kohlrabi!
- Make ‘em into pancakes with lots of fresh herbs!
- Think about kohlrabi on your crudités platter before the meal.
- Create a beautiful slaw with shredded apples and cilantro.
- Add kohlrabi to a mash of root vegetables for a new twist!
- How about some kid-friendly fries? (To go with sandwiches made with that leftover turkey!)
There are some who feel like no Thanksgiving meal would be complete without turnips making an appearance on the table. Turnips are often associated with spicy and bittersweet notes, but at Siena Farms we grow exclusively sweet varieties. Some of the bitter notes that you’ll get from grocery store turnips actually come from the fact that they’re stored a long time, but our sweet guys are fabulously fresh and delicious. Chef Ana prefers them raw – shaved into salads or made into a slaw. Here are some turnip recipes to consider for your big T-Day!
- Here’s an Irish twist on mashed turnips, a Turnip Colcannon.
- How about a light slaw with dijon mustard and poppyseed dressing?
- Love dark greens? How about this take of spiced turnips and collards…?
- If nothing else, everyone loves a gratin, right? Try this one!
When you put out a beautiful table of food it’s those little things that seem to make all the difference. Pickling your own beets (especially our super-sweet guys) takes just a bit of time, but rewards you all winter long. Those tiny dishes of pickled things give a nice sweet and sour taste in the middle of heavier, richer foods that we normally put on our Thanksgiving table… so enjoy some tasty beet recipes!
- Combine beet with our turnips, rosemary, and chiles for an herbal and spicy treat!
- Pickle them with onions, black pepper and allspice to enjoy classic pickled beet flavor.
- Love crunch? How about this super simple raw pickled beet idea?
- Already have some pickled? Combine them with cranberries to make a fantastic relish!
- We just love the idea of Asian inspired beets with ginger and rice wine vinegar, too.
Oh, butternut squash… once we have had our fill of summer tomatoes and corn, we get so excited fill our bins at market with hard squashes! Just because butternut squash is a really popular variety doesn’t mean that you have to do the expected when it comes to making soup with it. Sure, it’s awesome when cooked and pureed, or cooked and pureed with apples (a classic!) but think of this veggie as a jumping off point for greatness. It’s a perfect, classy, and delicious starter course for your Thanksgiving extravaganza or a quiet night spent at home… without the extended family.
- With coconut and curry – we’re thinking about all that delicious Thai flavor!
- How about adding red lentils for some great texture?
- Forget the french onion soup, how about Gruyere croutons with your soup?
- No blender? You’ll still feel all warm inside from this version with beans, bacon, and swiss chard.
We are big fans of our Long Island Cheese pumpkins and although we admit we’re biased, we really think we know what we’re talking about. When it comes to making your holiday pies this year don’t even think about the canned stuff! The LI Cheese pumpkins you’ll find at the Siena Farms South End and at the Farmers’ Market at Copley are your dream come true. There’s lots of pumpkin flesh in there and they’re nice and meaty – not watery! Once you steam and puree your pumpkins you’ll be ready for anything…
- Packed into a gingersnap crust and buried in a cloud of heavenly meringue – this pie will pack a wallop!
- Oranges and pumpkin were made to be together… like in this pie with orange peel and rum.
- How about swirling our pumpkins with nutella? Need we say more?
- You could always add cranberries and pecans to take it to the next level.
We’d like to thank one of our favorite bakers on the planet, Maura Kilpatrick, for sharing the magic that is Pumpkin Jam with us… just a little pumpkin-y bonus on this cold Wednesday:
SOFRA’S PUMPKIN JAM
Yields 8 cups
This has become a signature item for us each fall. The formula is simple, equal parts of pumpkin by weight and sugar, spices are added after the jam is cooked.
Cooking the Pumpkin:
The pumpkin can be steamed in a basket over boiling water or roasted in the oven. Once the pumpkin is cooled, scoop flesh and weigh. Cook some of the pumpkin for jam and puree the rest for pumpkin bread.
The following recipe is based on 3 pounds of cooked pumpkin. Adjust as needed:
Combine the cooked pumpkin and sugar in large pot. Heat over medium heat, stirring well until sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat and cook until mixture thickens and turns a darker orange color – approximately 20- 30 minutes.
Cool jam and add:
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
If larger chunks of pumpkin remain, you can use a hand blender directly in the pot. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
Siena Farms carrots are the truly sweet, wonderfully crunchy, and completely beautiful (have you seen our rainbow carrots?!?) with a beautiful earthiness – a true taste of the farm! Just because we have carrots for the duration of our growing period, don’t think that we take that for granted. Fall carrots are a feather in our cap and worth waiting for all hot summer long.
- How about a French inspired recipe with walnuts, capers, mustard and dill?
- Take your guests to Morocco with this carrot salad with preserved lemon and harissa.
- This Asian take on carrot salad has nutty sesame seeds and zesty fresh ginger!
- Get a little Greek with mixed nuts and feta.
- What about this inspired take with tahini, curry and raisins?