Smoky Southwestern Beans

You can enjoy these beans straight out of the pot, or save and prepare them refried-style later.

Ingredients:
2 cups dried beans, such as Mayocoba Pinto, black or other bean of your choosing
1 small onion
2-3 tablespoons bacon drippings (or butter or lard)
1-2 teaspoons salt (plus more to taste)
2-3 quarts water
Pinch of Mexican oregano (optional)

Method:
1. Sort through the beans and discard any rocks or shriveled beans. Rinse and drain well.

2. Add beans to a pot and cover with 2-3 quarts of water, or so the water level is 2 inches above the beans. Add the roughly chopped onion and 2-3 tablespoons of bacon drippings (or butter or lard).

3. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and partially cover. Let simmer for 1½-2 hours. Ensure that the water level is well above the beans by adding more water as they cook if necessary.

4. Start tasting them after 1½ hours. If they are hard or grainy they need a little more time. Once cooked add 1 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of Mexican oregano and simmer for another 10-15 minutes. Give a final taste for seasoning, adding more salt if necessary. Either serve immediately, or store for future use.

Fall Comforts Recipes

As leaves start to flutter to the ground and dusk descends earlier in the day, now is the time to cozy up with this week’s lineup of warm-and-wonderful fall offerings—like smoky Skagit River Ranch bacon and fragrant fresh sage to accent a beautiful bowl of piping-hot Jacob’s Cattle beans, plus Pain au Levain bread, lively Tuscan red wine and a vibrant produce selection that includes zucchini, Tropea onions, broccolini and Supersweet corn. Also complemented by farm-fresh eggs and Chanterelle mushrooms, this box is a lovely snapshot of the season at its best.

Here are a few recipe ideas for the week:

Jacob’s Cattle Beans with Bacon & Sage
Smoky and savory, this is a bowlful of comfort on a fall day!

Roasted Beet Salad with Mesclun Greens & Crumbled Chevre
Topped with a light vinaigrette and roasted seeds, this salad is both colorful and satisfying.

Roasted Beets
Our favorite way to cook beets, this method creates tender, delicious beets that are easy to peel and serve in a salad.

Broiled Heirloom Tomatoes
Topped with crispy Panko bread crumbs and Grana-style cheese, these beautiful tomatoes are a worthy supper side.

Lemon Broccolini
This light and fresh side is accented by tart lemon juice and fresh-cracked pepper.

Sautéed Zucchini with Bacon & Thyme
This simple recipe from the Homegrown Harvest cookbook is packed with flavor.

Jacob’s Cattle Beans with Bacon & Sage

Smoky and savory, this is a bowlful of comfort on a fall day!

Ingredients:
½ pound dried Jacob’s Cattle beans, soaked
3 pieces (about 5 ounces) thick-cut bacon
1 small onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 medium carrot, chopped
4-5 small cloves garlic, minced
4 heaping teaspoons crumbled sage, divided
1 teaspoon sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper, to taste
A splash of wine or vinegar, for deglazing
Olive oil, for garnish

Method:
1. Transfer beans and their soaking liquid to a medium saucepan. Add water to cover by at least 1 inch, if necessary, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer gently, covered, until beans just begin to soften, about 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium heat, cook bacon until crisp. Remove bacon to a clean plate. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of bacon grease. Deglaze pan with a splash of wine or vinegar and scrape up all of the browned bits. Add onions, celery, carrot, and garlic to the skillet. Crumble in 2 teaspoons of sage and sprinkle with salt. Sauté over low heat, very slowly, until vegetables are very soft and slightly caramelized, about 20 minutes.

3. Add vegetables and salt to the beans. Simmer, partially covered, until beans are tender and cooking liquid has thickened, about 1 hour 15 minutes. During the final 5 minutes of cooking, add the remaining sage and freshly ground black pepper: taste and adjust seasonings. Serve hot, drizzled with olive oil and topped with crumbled bacon.

Summery September Recipes

Though the calendar may say September, the recent sunny weather has the gardens thinking it’s still high summer as they continue to produce favorites for this week’s box like heirloom tomatoes, colorful Corno di Toro frying peppers and zucchini, as well as spicy microgreens, string beans and purple Italian garlic. Also included: Fresh semolina pappardelle pasta and all the ingredients for a peach cobbler topped with whipped crème fraîche—so pop that in the oven, uncork a bottle of of dry Spanish white wine and toast to lingering summer.

Here are a few recipe ideas for the week:

Purple String Beans with Caramelized Sweet Onions
These beautiful beans are tossed with flavorful onions and fresh parsley.

Roasted Heirloom Tomatoes
As good as heirloom tomatoes are fresh, roasting them concentrates their flavor even more!

Grilled Peppers & Zucchini
Serve these classic grilled vegetables from Domenica Marchetti’s The Glorious Vegetables of Italy atop warm bread.

Pickled Peppers
These addictive peppers are wonderful for snacking, or served with burgers, tacos and sandwiches.

Peach Cobbler
It’s hard to beat this classic summer dessert—just add whipped crème fraîche!

Whipped Crème Fraîche
A simply-stunning topping for this week’s cobbler!

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