Vegging Out

Do you participate in a CSA (community supported agriculture, or a farm share)? A few of us do, and we’re always thrilled to pick up our fresh-from-the-farm veggies. It’s pure incentive to eat healthy and create a delicious meal around the local ingredients provided. This week’s bounty includes, among other things, succulent sweet corn, brightly flavored onions and perfect little red bliss potatoes.

What to do with these seasonal treasures? Peter Davis’s gorgeous cookbook, Fresh & Honest: Food From the Farms of New England and the Kitchen of Henrietta’s Table, which we published in 2008, has inspiration. His Roasted Corn and Crab Chowder popped out as the immediate answer. Baking the corn in the husks will surely impart wonderful flavor, and substituting red bliss potatoes for his suggestion of new potatoes should do the trick. And how can you go wrong with fresh rock crab in the height of summer?

Here’s Chef Davis’s sensory delight of a dish:

Roasted Corn and Crab Chowder
Serves 8

Ingredients:

4 ears corn, unhusked
1/2 gallon chicken stock
2 strips bacon, diced
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/2 cup celery, diced
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
6 medium-sized new potatoes, cut into bite-sized cubes
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 pound rock crabmeat
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Bake the corn in their husks for

40 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool.

Husk the corn and remove the kernels with a knife. Set aside.

Take 1/2 cup of the stock and bring to a boil in a saucepan. Add three-quarters of the corn kernels and cook on medium heat for 20 minutes. Puree the mixture in a blender or food processor.

In a large pot, sauté the bacon until lightly browned. Add the onion and celery and cook until transparent. Add the flour and cook over low heat for 20 minutes, stirring to keep from burning.

Gradually add the potatoes and remaining stock. Cover and cook until the potatoes are soft. Add the corn puree, reserved kernels, turmeric, and crabmeat.

Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

What are your favorite garden-fresh recipes? Please share!

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