Organic Fava Beans, MY BON APPETITE, California
In season for a few short weeks in the spring, fava beans are flat, bright green beans with a sweet nutty flavor and a buttery texture. They are contained in thick, long inedible pods. Remove both the inedible shell as well as the beans waxy coating before cooking or enjoying raw. To easily remove inner coating, either blanch or steam the beans, then slip off the shell, or freeze on a sheet pan and crack off the coating.
Favas pair especially well with other spring vegetables such as morels, sweet pea tendrils, or asparagus. They are delicious pureed into a soup, enjoyed sautéed with pasta, or raw in spring salads.
To best store favas, keep them unshelled in the refrigerator and use within 5 – 7 days.
Organic Purple Kohlrabi, RODONI FARMS, Santa Cruz, CA
A literal translation of the German "kohl" (cabbage) and "rabi" (turnip,) purple kohlrabi taste exactly like their green cousins. The purple skin is peeled before cooking to reveal a bright white flesh. With a slightly bitter flavor with notes of mild sweetness, kohlrabi is quite versatile – use then in dishes with spicy flavors, with rich cheesy dishes, or shredded raw into salads.
Kohlrabi is rich in Vitamin C, B6, Potassium and Dietary Fiber, and a good source of Thamin & Folate. Snip off the stalks and store with the bulbs loosely wrapped in plastic in the refrigerator. The greens will last for several days, and the bulbs for a week or more. Unless very small, peel the bulbs before cooking.
Organic Red Dandelion Greens, JJM, Watsonville, CA
Deep green with a brilliant red vein, red dandelion greens provide a strong, peppery kick and are ideal for adding balance and pop to salads. A highly nutrient dense food, dandelion greens are thought to have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. Historically, dandelion was prized in Mexican and Chinese folk medicine for its use in treating infections and liver diseases.
To decrease the bitterness of the greens, blanch the leaves in boiling water (quickly dip the greens until tender, then transfer to ice water, then rinse well.)Store loosely wrapped in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Organic Rhubarb, HEIRLOOM ORGANICS, Hollister, CA
Rhubarb could be mistaken for a celery stalk gone awry. With bright pink to deep crimson colored stalks and green inedible (toxic to humans) roots and leaves, rhubarb is in season from early spring into June, grown in both hothouses and fields.
With a bitingly tart flavor, rhubarb blends best with sweeter fruits or in desserts. Store rhubarb stalk in cool, dark, and dry spot for 1 – 2 weeks.
Organic French Breakfast Radishes, BONPACK, Chowchilla, CA
French Breakfast Radishes are a small snacking radish with a distinct oblong shape, appealing red tint and white tip. They have a mild sweet and sharp flavor with a crisp snap.
Use French Breakfast radishes for a crudités bowl, or simply slice lengthwise, spread with high quality butter and a dusting of sea salt for a satisfying treat.
Very low in calories and high in Vitamin C, the radish is a relative of both horseradish and turnips. Store radishes with any leafy greens removed and stored separately (use within 1 or 2 days); wrap the radishes in bags or store in a bowl of water in the fridge for several days. Change the water every other day or when it gets cloudy.
Vegetarian: Butter Bound Cheese, Beehive Cheese Co., Uintah, UT
Extra Fruit: Strawberries, Coke Farms, San Juan Bautista, CA
Organic certification is provided by California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF).CCOF has been helping to create and maintain extremely high standards in organic farming since 1973.