The link to the list of contents for this weeks boxes is here.
Well, spring is really starting to show is face around here, with the first of the zucchini’s in the large boxes and cos lettuces in all the boxes this week. The potatoes in the boxes this week are “Moonlight” spuds – a great all round potato for general use and one of the most popular of potato varieties in NZ, where they grow LOTS of spuds. There are still some mandarins around, but they will be just a memory soon, so enjoy them while you can!
Cos lettuce is one of the oldest known cultivated lettuces and is one of the more nutritious lettuces, generally being a darker shade of green than icebergs. It was used by the Romans, who used to cook it, and is known as Romaine lettuce in some countries. It is called cos because it is believed to have originated on the Greek island of Cos. We are most familiar with it as the lettuce used to make Caesar Salad, but it can be cooked and is great stir fried with a little stock and some soy sauce or halved lengthways, grilled until just a bit charred, then dressed with a balsamic dressing.
Caesar salads are hugely popular and can be found on most cafe menu’s these days with all sorts of add-ons, but the original version which was developed by an Italian-born Mexican in the 1920’s, was very basic, with no chicken or eggs. A Caesar salad makes a fantastic light lunch and is basically a combination of cos lettuce, crisp bacon bits, fried crouton and shaved parmesan cheese lightly coated in a creamy dressing. Don’t be alarmed at the inclusion of anchovies in the dressing, you won’t taste the fishiness, but they will impart a wonderful flavour to it.
1 egg (or 2 yolks)
1 clove of garlic (optional)
3/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbs red wine vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 drained anchovy fillets
Put all ingredients in a processor or blender and process until smooth. With the motor still running, slowly drizzle in the oil, drip by drip intitially until it begins to emulsify, then in a thin stream until dressing is of desired consistency. Season to taste.