Saturday, April 14, 2012

rabbit food

It's that special time of year again.  The time when I frantically search for ways to use up strange and copious amounts of produce.  The time when I proudly support a local farmer, not the middleman.  That's right.  My CSA has started.  Our farmers, the Crisps, brought our first haul last Saturday, and it will continue until the summer.  I've chosen only to do the Spring season CSA this year, since we're moving in June.  I will be sad to leave the Crisps and Shepherd's Valley Farm.  Their vegetables are fresh and wholesome and their eggs are second to none.  The facts that I've been to their farm several times, met some chickens, observed the way they are rotated around their pastures, and the bright freshness of the sunshine-yellow yolks.  Something about all that makes me like their eggs a lot more than the ones from the store.

Our first batch was small and included lettuce, onions, carrots and radishes.  The first three were no problem.  I could deal with those all day.  Radishes are harder.  My sister loves to eat radishes raw, like a bunny.  I know the French relish raw radishes with sea salt and butter.  I've just never gotten down on that spicy flavor.  Instead, I like to cook them.  That's right - you can cook radishes, just like all the other root vegetables!  They take on an earthy sweetness, much like carrots or turnips or rutabagas.  As they cook in the sweet and sour broth they impart their pink color.  This was our side dish for dinner tonight.  (Note:  I didn't have a shallot, and this is only half a pound of radishes.  I also used honey because we were out of sugar, and plain white vinegar because we were out of white wine vinegar.  It was still delectable!)

Braised Radishes
1 pound radishes, scrubbed and trimmed, halved if large
1 C chicken stock
1 shallot, thinly sliced
2 T butter
2 T sugar
2 T white wine vinegar
salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. 

Bring to a boil, cover, and cook until radishes are tender (15 minutes or so).  Uncover, crank up the heat, and boil off the excess liquid until it reduces to a thick glaze.

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