Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Now, from something not so different

It was finally a beautiful, expected summer’s day – warmth with clinging humidity and not a threatening cloud in the sky. I started my day, as I like to with a grounding walk through the market greeting the arrival of apricots, patty pan squash and the ethereally assertive lemon verbena. I chatted with Nicole regarding the farm party that was being planned, and was told to save the date. The folks at Cherry Lane Farms confided they actually needed some rain – just not another 24-day stretch of it. I always take time to have a natter with Betsy and Ken for they are only summertime residents of the market, and we always have a good laugh.

Betsy produces an esoteric Egyptian shallot, prefect peach tomatoes, and a superb selection of greens. And, nestled amongst the Tuscan kale and bok choy was a small head of cabbage.

Now, this was no common green head of potential sauerkraut. It was clearly a cabbage but it was pointed, conical not globular and the leaf felt decidedly less tender then its most expected relative. I was told it was a Wakefield cabbage more properly referred to as Early Jersey Wakefield – but of course. It is an early harvest heirloom variety that owes its heritage to English breeding, and was planted in the Jeffersonian garden. At first blush I was not seeing a precious, preserved genetic resource with lineage beyond the Daughter’s of the Revolution, I saw the ferocious potted planted from Little Shop of Horrors. This had to be the visual reference for that movie I cannot believe in such coincidence so, I placed it on my counter in a small pot, and waited. Two days later it never bellowed out in that Levi Stubbs baritone, “Seymour, feed me!” I figured if it was not going to ask to be fed then I was going to eat it.

White Salad – serves 6 to 8
1 green apple – such as Lodi or Granny Smith
1 fennel bulb
1/4-cup fresh lemon juice
1/4-teaspoon salt
3 small cucumbers (approx.1/2-pound)
4 scallions – roots discarded.
1 small white cabbage head
1/4-teaspoon caraway – crushed
1/3-cup white wine vinegar
1/4-cup oil olive
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Core the apple, and then slice the apple and fennel a thin julienne. In a small work bowl toss the apple and fennel with the lemon juice and salt. Put to the side.

In the meanwhile, julienne the cucumber, scallions and cabbage, and place in a large work bowl. To the cabbage add the caraway, vinegar, oil black pepper and apples and fennel, and toss to thoroughly combine. Taste to correct seasoning.


figtree said...

Look forward to trying this delicious and healthy salad!!Figtreeapps

foodnfit said...

Definitely going to try this out!

Belinda @Zomppa said...

Chef Ruben!!!!!!!!!!!!! I took one of your classes at ICE and to this day, it is one of the best experiences I've had. Chef Ruben ROCKS.

foodcreate said...

I'm going to try it!!! Looks so Delicious and healthy :)

thanks for sharing :)

and if you can visit me I can visit you:) Join post your comments.:)

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