Accidental Locavore Farmbasket Week 14: The End of Corn, and Beginning of Cardoons

by Anne Maxfield on September 27, 2010

Accidental Locavore Orange Cauliflower

Maybe I just whine too much this time of year, but I don’t think I’m the only one, am I? A girl should be happy for such a colorful box of veggies as I got this week. Beautiful pale orange cauliflower, big purple cabbage, red potatoes, yellow (wax) and green beans, green zucchini, red tomatoes, as well as some little yellow and red ones, and purple eggplant. But corn, no corn, and that makes me sad because the tomatoes are the next to go, and my basil is looking a little the worse for wear. The summer is just to damn fleeting.

So, stop complaining and start cooking! Made a good batch of tabbouleh with the tomatoes, some mint and parsley from my garden, click here for the recipe. Am getting closer on the amazing cauliflower gratin from Bobby Flay’s Bar Americain, but not quite there yet. Having the two colors of cauliflower did give me style points (at least in my own warped mind). You can tell me what you think when I post the recipe and photos on Friday, OK? And did a quick batch of Brussels sprouts with bacon for dinner with friends last night. Sprouts were so sweet!.

Last week I went to the Gallery Talk at Sotheby’s for the heirloom vegetable auction. The talk about saving seeds and how little money and care goes into safeguarding the world’s food in case of a dire emergency is pretty frightening. Rather than getting bent out of shape about the newest name and marketing for high fructose corn syrup, we should really be concerned about seed banks and libraries.

My big ah-ha moment came when I went to the farmstand that was set up outside Sotheby’s and I purchased my first cardoons. They’re a member of the thistle family, but look like weird celery. Supposedly they taste like artichoke hearts, one of my favorites. I’ve never eaten them, and didn’t think they grew anywhere near here, so I’m excited to try them. Most recipes I’ve seen online do them in a bechamel sauce with some Parmesan cheese, so here goes. I’m thinking a lamb chop would be a good accompaniment.Any other ideas?


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Mista September 30, 2010 at 12:01 am

Sort of off topic, but you mentioned your basil, and I must say – hay. My neighbor is obsessed with it, and he brought it over to my ever wilting basil in July, to cover it with compost and hay, and have not watered it since, AND it's 3x the size, and still kickin.

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