The heat and humidity the past week has been miserable, though not as bad as for the northwest. In my CSA box for week 8, was broccoli, green beans, lettuce, sweet onions, cabbage, raspberries, mint and peaches.
One of the first ingredients I used was the green beans. I found a wonderful salad on the website, Lidia’s Italy, for String Beans, Capers and Basil Salad. This tasty salad can be served warm or at room temperature. Although my husband was nibbling on it while it was sitting out, he said he would prefer to eat it cold; into the refrigerator it went.
Beside the ingredients mentioned in the recipe title, you’ll also need, red wine vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil. The beans are trimmed and blanched in boiling water for approximately 7 to 8 minutes until they’re just tender. Shredded basil, the drained capers, oil, vinegar and salt to taste are added to the beans and tossed together. This refreshing salad was a lovely accompaniment to my dinner that evening. The capers add another layer of flavor to the beans. Overall a great addition to my collection of cold vegetable salads.
With the items, Dreyer Farms includes a reference sheet which covers storage tips and recipes. On the sheet I found a recipe for Raspberry Peach Jam. The recipe is from the website Oregon Transplant (https://jessicaerinjarrell.blogspot.com/). I had about one cup of raspberries and three peaches in this week’s box which was enough to make half of the recipe.
For the recipe, you’ll also need sugar, lemon juice and a candy thermometer to go along with the fruit. Unfortunately, my thermometer wasn’t working properly. After cooking the fruit for 25 minutes, I couldn’t get it to required 221°. My meat thermometer also would not register that high. I took a chance and hoped after the allotted time, the jam would congeal from the natural pectin’s, well not quite. However, despite the fact it didn’t gel, it was delightful. It had the right balance of tart raspberries to sweet and juicy peaches. I promised my granddaughter a jar and batch of homemade biscuits in which to try the jam.
Raspberry Peach Jam
From the website Oregon Transplant
Ingredients (makes 24 ounces):
4 peaches, peeled and roughly chopped
2 cups raspberries
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Place a candy thermometer on the side of the pan. Simmer mixture, stirring occasionally, until mixture reaches 221º. This should take 15-25 minutes. Once mixture reaches temp, place a small amount on a plate and place plate in freezer. If mixture gels together after 1-2 minutes, the jam is done. Remove pan from heat, and allow to cool completely before storage. Keeps up to 1 month in an airtight container in the fridge.
*Note* The simmering time should break the fruit down completely, but if not, you could take an immersion blender to the jam to break down the fruit after it's done cooking.
String Beans, Capers and Basil Salad
Insalata di Fagiolini, Capperi, e Basilico
From the website Lidia’s Italy
¼ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for the pot
1-pound string beans, trimmed
½ cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
½ cup drained tiny capers in brine
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the string beans, and blanch until tender, about 7 to 8 minutes. Drain, and rinse to cool slightly.
Shred the basil. Put the string beans in a bowl, and toss with the capers and basil. Drizzle with the vinegar and oil, and season with the salt. Toss to coat, and serve slightly warm or at room temperature.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.