Friday, October 30, 2009

Next Exchange November 15th

Next exchange will be Sunday 
November 15th
at 12 noon 
at 9572 El Cajon St

and the following will be on

December 13th !

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Great time to Plant for the Cooler Season

Ok so we had a tease of Autumn weather, then back to the heat of summer and then back again --- will the weather make up it's mind please ?  The calendar speaks of pumpkins and apples and ghosts and Halloween. OOOOOO, It's a scary time.

Actually it;s a great time to plant your fall and winter veggies. The last of my tomatoes are still hanging on the vine, but there are fewer and fewer to choose from come salad time. I've harvested two very orange pumpkins, a few more zucchini and then their blossoms (really great in a frittata or egg dish) and a few more eggplant.
But now I want to have chard and broccoli and brussel sprouts -- something hearty to braise or simmer in a soup or stew with beans.
Blue Hill Farms and Sprouting Up Organically are my first choices for seedlings this fall. For some reason, seeds and I just don't get along. Oh I've mail ordered from the best of them, but they just seem to wither and die. But give me a six-pack of chard already started and I'll give them the TLC needed to produce.

And there's a new choice in town, with Nopalito Native Plant Nursery located next to Lassens at 4107 E. Main Street, Ventura specializing in native, drought -tolerant plants. A great opportunity to combine native plants with your veggies and flowers for some bio-diversity. Check it out and say hello to Antonio !

Friday, October 2, 2009

Thanks for a Great Exchange...Next One Oct 11th

The truck with the surf board was heavy with all the spaghetti squash as it offloaded the cache for the 5th bi-weekly Ventura Produce Exchange this past Sunday. Then the tomatoes and avocados arrived, some lavendar and an eisel with Miss Riley's artwork, more cherry tomatoes, some pomegranites, thai peppers, beef liver dog treats, lemons, corn, green zebra tomatoes, butternut squash, eggplant, rosemary, sage, basil, and did I mention tomatoes? Just as I was ready to take down the tent, more produce arrived and with it smiling, familiar faces and some new ones too! Did I miss anyone ? thank you one and all !

Grilled Eggplant Dip aka Baba Gannoj
Makes 2 1/2 cups
2 large Eggplants
2 cloves garlic
2 scallions
4 T Cilantro (or Italian Flat Leaf Parsley)
2 T yogurt
2-3 T Olive Oil
1/2 t ground Cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste

Wash the eggplants and prick in a few spots to allow the steam to escape. Grill over medium flame, turning frequently, until charred on all sides and the flesh is soft. Let cool ; split lengthwise and scoop out the flesh.

In a food processor add the garlic, scallion, cilantro and lemon juice and pulse until all ingredients are minced. Add the eggplant, yogurt, olive oil, cumin, salt and pepper and pulse until pureed. Adjust seasoning and serve drizzled with olive oil and topped with garnish of cilantro. Great with pita, crackers or bread.