Dee's Corner

July 24, 2018


Dee

So how did everyone enjoy the fennel last week? I still have a little bit left. As I mentioned earlier, I used the fennel leaves as an herb garnish on our fish, some of the bulb in a salad and the rest in a stir-fry. I did freeze the stalks, to use as a flavoring in soup later in the season. One of our CSA members, Diane Fluin, has a food blog (Diane’s Food Blog) and she has some wonderful suggestions. Check out her recipe for French Chicken in a Pot. Diane mentions that she uses fennel stalks to season her chicken. Something to look forward to this fall!
But for now, you’ll notice we have cucumbers in this week’s share. I found the Cool Cucumber Salsa recipe was one good way to use them. (See Recipe Section.) Or try the following recipe Diane sent in last week, for Crunchy Refrigerator Dill Pickles. So easy!

What You’ll Need:
Pickling cucumbers, cut into spears
Carrots, cut into spears (thinner than the cucumbers)
Whole Garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
Several bunches fresh Dill
Kosher salt
White Vinegar
Diane’s Method:
1. Start by slicing the cucumbers into spears, the carrots into thinner spears, and peeling and smashing the garlic so it breaks apart a bit.
2. Get lots of fresh dill ready.
3. Place a clove or two of garlic along with some dill in the bottom of a clean jar.
4. Pack the jar with the cucumber and carrot spears (holding the jar at an angle makes this step a little easier). Pack the jar until nothing more fits, and then press in another clove or two of garlic and some more dill on top.
5. Sprinkle the top with Kosher salt. The amount of salt—and dill and garlic, as well—will depend on how you like your pickles. I used a pint jar and about 1/2 teaspoon of salt or so.
6. Slowly add the white vinegar into the jar until it’s about 3/4 full, then fill the rest of the jar with filtered water (I just used the water dispenser from the fridge), leaving about 1/2 inch at the top. Screw on the lid and gently shake to combine. Place the jar in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.

Because everything was kept cold, these pickles are extra crunchy! The pickles will be ready within a few hours, but waiting at least a day yields the best flavor and gives the carrots a little longer to become pickled. Enjoy!

Thanks, Diane! I can’t wait to try these. I’m going to add a few sliced green peppers to each jar as well, to add interest. Have a great week, everyone!

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