The Chicory Family

A few of our farmers are growing a lovely array of chicories, so I looked up a bit more info to share and found this great blog from the Whistling Train Farm in Washington state. She has some great information not just on chicories, but on a lot of the same goodies we see in our shares, so it's worth a look around there.

Chicories include escarole, endives and radicchio in many varieties, and according to Whistling Farm's blog, dandelion, though I have not been able to confirm that on any other website.

 

We're excited to get some curly endive for the shares this weekThese leafy greens in the chicory family add a sharp bitter character to salads, but mellow and sweeten up a bit when cooked. If you aren't a big fan of the bitter greens, I suggest cooking them to minimize the intensity. They are delicious braised slowly in a broth or caramelized with a high heat saute with onions and garlic (or green onions or garlic scapes). Adding a splash of balsamic vinegar and date syrup can make some magic happen--don't be afraid to experiment.

We've seen some great varieties in the past, and we're hoping to see some of them again in the coming season, including curly endive, esacarole, frisee and a variety of radicchio called Virtus or Sugarloaf, which has elongated heads that are pale green with a crisp pale yellow interior. They look similar to romaine but have a bitter-sweet radicchio flavor that’s nice in mixed salads.

A common suggestion for using chicory raw in salads is to pair it with salty cheese, fruit and nuts, and to use an assertive dressing with lemon juice or a strong vinegar, like balsamic. The Whistling Train blog has a number of recipes for salads and cooking suggestions for chickories, so check it out and enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tip: Clean Greens

The greens we get (particularly some of the winter spinach) can be pretty dirty. Sometimes they're pristinely clean, but still, we suggest you always wash your food! Give it an initial rinse and then remove the stems and soak the leaves in plenty of clean water. I use my salad spinner, placing the leaves in the...Read more

Testimonials

We are very happy to have our products included in shares through Fair Shares.  The folks at Fair Shares have set-up a great distribution schedule that works with smaller scale local farmers taking into account weekly and seasonal limitations in harvesting. The staff at Fair Shares are easy to work with, being both friendly and professional.  They have been very straightforward about their needs and those that the share members represent. We look forward to growing with Fair Shares!

Bobbi Sandwisch, Live Springs Farm, Carrollton, IL 100% Grassfed Beef, Pasture-Raised Pork, Chicken, and Eggs