From Ours to Yours…
With our focus on food origins and the importance of the best ingredients you can source locally, we recently embarked on an experiment beyond the backyard. Although online shopping for organic fruits and vegetables never occurred to us, we decided to see what was behind a simple snail-mail flyer for Misfits Market. Within a week of signing up for a subscription for two and a delivery schedule of every other week, we received our first shipment of misfit fruits and veggies (pictured above). If you like surprises like we do, then you’re in for a bounty of healthy ingredients that also serves as inspiration for your next foray into the kitchen. Another upside to the surprise factor is finding an ingredient in your box that you may have been reluctant to try or one that you would not otherwise find locally. More recently, we participated in Misfits Market beta test for specific ordering and add-ons, versus a surprise package. Approximately a week before the next scheduled shipment, Misfits Market emailed a list of preferences within five separate categories. For those who are true meal planners and super-organized, these added features to the service, certainly come in handy.
The mission of Misfits Market is timely and long overdue. According to their About page, they state that in America, many of us still don’t have access to high-quality fresh fruits and vegetables and that we waste as much food as we eat. Almost half of what our nation’s farms grow is never eaten. Much of this is due to modern-day beauty standards for food. Misfit fruits, misshapen vegetables, and delicious but odd-sized produce are squandered at every level. It’s not healthy, it’s expensive, it’s a problem at a huge scale, and it doesn’t fit with their view of the world, hence the start-up of their new and rapidly expanding company.
But that’s not all. For meal planning and other ideas, the folks at Misfits Market also include a recipe card that includes a specific item found in your box. The shipments are via Federal Express and great care is taken with the packaging and delivery, even in inclement weather conditions. They seem to have thought of everything, right down to the recyclable cardboard boxes to the ice packs that are reusable and environmentally safe for disposal.
So go on online to get organic! When joining the Misfits movement, you can save 30% on your first box by using code LEMENUMAISON30. And for our special friends and subscribers in Florida, beginning this week, Misfits Market has officially started taking orders for delivery to all zip codes in the sunshine state.
••To Eating Well••
With the waning days of summer, there is still time to grab your basket and gather up some fruit for a refreshing white Bordeaux sangria! Celebrate the end of summer by mixing up a white or red French Bordeaux wine with the best of fruits in season. For added sweetness, hold the sugar and sweeten with honey to taste. So spread out a blanket in the last lushness of sweet summer grass for an impromptu romantic apéritif for two.
1 bottle of mid-priced French white Bordeaux wine of your choice
red and white grapes
2 early McIntosh apples
honey to taste – optional
•• Throughly wash and rinse all of the fruit, leaving the skins intact. •• Remove the cores from the apples and the pits from peaches and nectarine, then slice the fruit into small mouth-sized portions. •• Set aside the grapes, uncut. •• Place the fruit into a large pitcher and pour the full bottle of wine over the fruit. ••Add the desired amount of red and white grapes, in addition to honey to taste. •• Refrigerate the sangria for a minimum of 5 hours to overnight, allowing the fruit to ferment. •• To serve, spoon the fruit into large white wine glasses, then slowly pour the sangria over. ••
•• Santé to the Summer of 2019! ••
TIP •• What to do with the left over fruit from the white Bordeaux sangria? Start another sangria by combining the deliciously fermented fruit with a red French Bordeaux! ••
The perfect accompaniment to enjoying this sangria is homemade french bread topped with an olive purée from the Kontoulis Family Olive Grove in Messinia, Greece. Producers of high quality, extra virgin olive oil, this first cold press and all natural olive oil and purée can be found at the Westport Farmers’ Market in Westport, Connecticut or you can order it online @ kontoulisfamily.com.
With just a week to go until Saint Patrick’s Day, we’ve been experimenting with two separate recipes for the traditional Irish dish, Colcannon…using red potatoes, Savoy cabbage and lots of creamy Irish butter! Serve this hearty classic alongside steamed carrots and homemade Irish soda bread to make for an authentically delicious and simply satisfying taste of Irish cuisine.
1/2 head of Savoy cabbage
3 large red potatoes
1 1/2 cup chopped leek
1/2 large sweet onion
1 clove garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
4 ounces butter (preferably salted Kerrygold)
salt and pepper to taste
Classic Colcannon is made with white-headed cannonball cabbage, which is quite popular in the United States. For this recipe we opted for the more aesthetic and lacy textured Savoy cabbage which is named after the Savoy Region in France. Another preference is that Savoy cabbage does not turn into mush when cooked. This varietal has the same flavor and appearance as regular cabbage when cooked, but retains a firm texture and crunchiness, which is desired for this recipe.
•• Peel the potatoes and cut into chunks of 2-1/2 inches. •• Place the potatoes into a bowl of cold water and rinse until the water runs clear, eliminating the starch. •• Strain and place the potatoes in a large pan with cold water and salt to taste. •• Over a medium heat bring the potatoes to a full boil for approximately 15-20 minutes. •• To test the readiness of the potatoes, take a small cutting knife and pierce random pieces then hold the knife upwards. •• When the potato falls from the knife back into the water, the potato is ready. •• Note that the potatoes should be cooked to softness and not mush, in preparation for a purée. •• To prepare the cabbage, cut in one half and reserve the other half for future use. •• Cut the cabbage into portions of approximately 1 inch thickness and then into smaller bite size portions. •• Place in a colander and rinse throughly, taking care to remove any excess sand. •• Prepare the leeks by removing the dark green leafy ends. •• Cut the leek vertically in half and then slice into ringlets. •• Peel half of the sweet onion and a garlic clove. •• Slice and dice into small pieces. •• Using the flat of your knife, crunch the garlic with a pinch of salt. •• In a pre-warmed sauté pan over a medium heat, combine 1 tbsp of olive oil with 1 tsp of butter. •• Once you have observed slight bubbling, add the onion, crunched garlic and leeks. •• Reduce the heat to medium low and allow the mixture to sweat, bringing forth the sweetness of the onions and the leeks. •• Cook the mixture slowly to avoid burning, stirring occasionally until you observe a golden hue. •• When the onion and leek mixture is ready, add the cabbage into the sauté pan along with 2 tbsps of butter and 3 tbsps of water. •• Let the mixture cook down slowly over a low heat for approximately 20 minutes to softness. •• Purée the potatoes, using a hand-held masher. •• Combine 5 tbsps of butter with the potatoes along with 3 tbsps of half and half. •• Salt and pepper to taste. •• Purée the potatoes to a chunky consistency, avoiding smoothness. •• Mix the potato purée into the sauté pan of cabbage and leeks, gently folding the potato purée into the mixture. •• Top with butter and serve piping hot.••
•• très bon ••
Breaking the fast in France is typically fuss-free and minimal. Great starts begin with fresh fruits in season and tartine, which is another name for your favorite crusty bread topped with butter and “confiture” (jam). Morning coffee is “café au lait” (coffee with milk) served in a small bowl which comes in handy when dipping your tartine.
Warm up your January in the kitchen with homemade French thyme baguette! Slice into desired portion sizes fresh from the oven, then top with softened butter and your favorite confiture. Another perfect and healthy accompaniment to a French breakfast is a simple fruit salad in season with just a sprinkling of shaved organic chocolat!