Sofrito from field to plate

Estia's Sofrito

Harvesting different types of peppers at the Quail Hill Farm

Reporting in from the Quail Hill Farm on October 30th. My membership here extends back to the early days, having joined New York’s first Community Supported Agriculture adventure (CSA) in 1993 I’m always thrilled to harvest here.

Harvesting carrots was my first task.  Take a look at our carrot video in the Estia Seed to Plate series. Once I was finished with the pitchfork in the carrot bed I moved on to find an abundance of chili’s three beds to the west. As always my eye was distracted by the beauty of the farm that’s been created and maintained by the Quail Hill crew now run by farmer Layton and mentored by poet and seed specialist Scott Chaskey.

Last week my email inbox featured a note from my pal Laura’s wife Catherine. She had visited a garden—planted by a man she spoke fondly of—and she carried a large bag filled with peppers home that day. Her note to me requested a recipe that might properly celebrate the harvest. Read More »

Read More »

“Over the top” Mac & Cheese

Estia's “Over the top” Mac & Cheese

This is a dish that I started using as a big starch filler for our annual Christmas party last year. The key ingredient was love as I had my 3 daughters by my side, each of them stuffing penne into rigatoni, singing Christmas songs and making it all so easy.

Today as I stood alone in the kitchen I was missing the girls—and their hands, their smiles & their cooking enthusiasm. Then our pals Stew, Tina and Amy walked in and took over the pasta stuffing. I made the béchamel, added the cheese, and in 15 minutes there were 3 casseroles going into the fridge, ready to be baked and served at tonight’s harvest dinner.

Recipe serves over 20 people

Ingredients:

  • 2 boxes Penne (DeCecco, Penne lisce #10)
  • 2 boxes Rigatoni ( DeCecco, Mezzi rigatoni #26)
  • 16 oz Swiss cheese, grated
  • 24 oz Gruyer cheese, grated
  • 16 oz Mozzarella, grated
  • 3 cups, salted butter
  • 1 cup A.P. flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon grated nutmeg
  • 4 tablespoons salt

Estia's “Over the top” Mac & Cheese

Read More »

Read More »

Mid Summer Garden Vegetable Escabeche

Mid Summer Garden Vegetable Escabeche with flat beans, carrots, cilantro, garlic

Makes 4 quarts (32oz Mason jars)

Ingredients:

  • 16 carrots, peeled and cut into four sticks each
  • 10 jalapeño peppers with top removed, quartered, leave the seeds
  • 1 quart flat beans, ends trimmed
  • 1 quart string beans, ends trimmed
  • 3 heads of garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 bunch of cilantro, washed twice in water bath to remove sand
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup salt
  • 32 oz white vinegar
  • 4 32 oz Mason jars, sanitized in boiling water*

In a 4 qt. or large stockpot, bring 2 quarts of water to a boil. Drop the carrots in the boiling water and simmer at medium heat for 1 minute. Add flat beans, string beans, and jalapeños. Stir and boil for 2 minutes. Read More »

Read More »

Refrigerator Beet Pickles | Red and Yellow Beet Recipes

Finding pickled beets at Hayward Farmers Market

Red Beet ”Refrigerator Pickles”  

Ingredients:

  • 6 medium sized beets (peeled and sliced into ½ inch discs)
  • 2 cups shredded beet greens
  • 3 garlic cloves, sliced thin
  • 3 dried red chilis, chopped
  • ½ cup chopped green onions
  • ½ cup chopped fennel bulb
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • 8 oz water
  • 5 oz white vinegar (plus extra to top off jar if needed)
  • 3 oz white sugar
  • 1 ⅔ T sea salt

Read More »

Read More »

Potato Au Gratin

Serves 10

Ingredients:

  • 10 (Idaho 60 per pound) potatoes, peeled and sliced 1 inch thick
  • 2 cups chopped shiitake mushrooms
  • 3 cups chopped onions
  • ½ pound butter
  • 1 cup A-P flour
  • 1/4 pound butter
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 5 cups grated gruyére cheese

Read More »

Read More »