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Sunday, 17 January 2010 11:50

When Potatoes Meet Yeast

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potatoroll1Potatoes are a cold weather staple with plenty of creamy and hearty appeal, happy to be baked, boiled, mashed, smashed or turned into a mess of cubes as morning has browns. Content to be eaten all my themselves, it’s easy to forget that potatoes can be used for far more. Jumping into the baking world, I decided to take my potatoes to the oven in classic Potato Rolls. Home made bread still sounds like a head ache to some, but this recipe makes plenty to eat now, freeze or give away and is quite forgiving. These make great little sandwiches or serve with a big roast or stew. Soft, sweet and somewhat rich, these rolls are basic and take well to additions like Caramelized Onions (stir into dough, cooled, in the beginning mixing of all ingredients.) Also, see notes at bottom for using left over mashed potatoes. 

Being a fat enriched sweeter and soft dough, this can also be rolled out into a large rectangle after the first rise….brushed with butter, sprinkled with cinnamon, brown sugar and pecans… then rolled up (starting with the long side facing you) jelly roll style, sliced into rounds and made into Pecan Cinnamon Buns! Smear with cream cheese frosting or a quick powdered sugar, milk and splash of bourbon icing to drizzle on top. 

Potato Rolls 

makes 48 rolls

2-3 potatoes, skinned and cubed

water to cover (2 cups) 

2 packets yeast (1/2 ounce total) 

sprinkle sugar 

1/2 cup melted butter 

1/2 cup honey

2 eggs 

2 teaspoons salt 

6-7 cups of flour total 

egg mixed with water or cream or another yolk for egg wash

potatoroll21<> Boil potatoes in water for 15-20 minutes until tender, reserve 1 cup of the cooking water. Mash potatoes until smooth, and cool mash to 110 to 115 degrees, while you cool the potato water to the same temp, again 110 to 115 degrees. **This is just to not burn and kill your yeast.) 

2<> Dissolve the yeast with the cooking water and the sprinkle of sugar in a large bowl. Let stand a few minutes while you gather rest of ingredients. 

3<> Add in the reserved potato mash, butter, honey, eggs, salt and 3 cups of flour. Beat until smooth and then stir in enough of the remaining flour to make a soft yet cohesive dough. Turn onto a lightly floured counter or bread board and knead until soft and smooth, about 8 to 20 minutes depending on your kneading skills… A dough hook will also do this for you if you have a stand mixer. 

4<> Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Place in a draft free spot until doubles in size…about 1 hour. **Dough can also be placed in fridge and allowed to “slow rise” over night at this stage**

5<> Punch dough down and turn onto a lightly floured counter again. Shape into 48 equal sized rolls OR proceed with Cinnamon Bun Variation above. Place into greased round pans or on a greased baking sheet. I let the sides all touch to get that pull apart soft yeast roll side. Cover again and let rise another 30 minutes to an hour until double in size. 

6<> Preheat oven to 400^…. Uncover rolls and brush with egg wash. Bake 20-30 minutes until puffy and cooked through. Cool on racks. 

**Left over mashed potatoes can be used here but since they already come with butter and such, decrease the melted butter in the recipe or remove it completely depending on how rich you made you mashed potatoes. Cheese doesn’t not hurt either, and will work. **

**Freeze left over mashed potatoes for another batch of rolls or to break off chunks of the frozen mash for stirring into soups that need a little more body or thickening.**

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Tuesday, 19 January 2010 11:47

Week Two!

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Week 2 is here! After last weeks grain mix up, Spelt berries… more info CSA Spelt Berries

I’m here to break down the box for this week… which gets exciting with the addition of cheese and black turtle beans! 

Week two box contains:




Beets, red and golden

Empire Apples 

img_7662Chippowa Potatoes

Butternut Squash


Onions, red and yellow


Green house local Salad Greens 

Harper’s Field Cheese in a variety of flavors

and….. Black Turtle Beans!

Carrots are still crispy and delicious. Parsnips keep me excited and have found their way into a puree under bay scallops and spinach for me this past week. Beets never fail to be champs; raw, roasted, juiced or stewed. The salad greens are a total fresh greens treat during winter days as well as the butternut squash for it’s humble familiarity….and versatility. 

Harper’s Field Cheeses can be read more about on their website Cheese!  and I would love to hear how everyone is using or eating the flavor they got! Share! I’m making cheese straws in true southern style… recipe soon. 

Beans, beans, the magical…. stop right there. Here is a piece I wrote on black beans with a little recipe, too! You could certainly sub potatoes or other winter squash cubes for the butternut/ sweet potato in this recipe. It could easily work under poached eggs as well as a riff on breakfast burritos and make for a lovely brunch or dinner. 

Beans, sweet potatoes, and corn provide for complex carbs, protein, iron, fiber, and not to mention, many other nutrients in this recipe. 


Warm Black Bean and Butternut Squash OR Sweet Potato Salad 

2 medium sweet potatoes (washed, peeled, and cut into bite sized chunks) 

OR butternut squash, 1 small-ish one, peeled and cubed

1-2 Tb olive oil 

1-2 cups chopped onions (amount based on your preference) 

½ cup diced red or green bell pepper 

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 finely diced jalapeno (optional)*

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon oregano 

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 

salt to taste (about 1 teaspoon generally)

1 ½ cups cooked black beans (about 1 can, drained, if you do not cook your own beans)

1 cup corn kernels (canned or frozen both work)

1-2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro

squeeze of lime juice, optional

***optional: a slash of orange juice OR diced avocado

1. Place the butternut squash OR sweet potatoes in pot, cover with water, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until tender (do not overcook, or the squash/potatoes will become mushy, which you do not want.) 

Remove from heat, drain, and keep warm. 

2. Meanwhile, in a deep skillet, sauté the onions and peppers in olive oil, until they soften. Add the garlic and jalapeno, stir and sauté about 1-2 minutes. Stir in spices, sauté 1 minute or so. 

3. Add the beans and corn, cover and cook until heated through. 

4. Remove from heat, stir in the sweet potatoes and chopped cilantro. 

5. Transfer to a bowl and stir in lime juice if using…. and enjoy! 

This salad tastes great with a side of toasted corn bread, or grilled meat, tofu or shrimp. It can be served warm or cold, and feel free to alter the spices to your tastes, or change things up by trying this option:

  Leave sweet potatoes out, and do not cook any ingredients. Stir all together in a large bowl, adding 1 cup of chopped tomatoes for a black bean relish that is delicious as a side dish or over other foods. Have fun with these local black beans. 

*remove the seeds to temper the heat of the pepper, or omit completely if serving this to children.

<> More on the value of fresh dried beans and recipes later this week <>

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Saturday, 23 January 2010 11:46

If you still have parsnips…

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Parsnip Soup

It’s creamy and leek filled. The recipe I looked at called for an apple, but I would much rather eat my apples so gosh darn I used all parsnips and it worked fine; especially with the sweetness of the parsnips from the share. 

Heat 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Add 2 cups of prepared leeks (meaning you wash them well after cutting off the roots and dark green ends. Halve these lengthwise and thinly slice into half moon shapes.) Add the leeks and cook a 5 minutes.

Add 1 pound of parsnips (trimmed and cut into chunks)… you can add 2 apples peeled, cored and chopped if you like, but I just up-ed the parsnips and the butter (shh.)

SO add the parsnips, apple if using, and 1 medium potato peeled (1/2 pound) and cut into 1 inch cubes, and 1 can of chicken broth. (or homemade, 1-2 cups). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and cook until vegetables are tender about 25 minutes. 

Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender (vented but covered) until all smooth and creamy. Return to pot and stir in 1/2 cup cream. Season to taste to salt and fresh cracked pepper.) 

*Save the leek bits for making stock.

In other news from upstate… 

It’s a beautiful saturday, mild temperatures and almost all the snow has melted. Deer still bounce around the lands and old fallen trees are being given new life as fire wood. The potatoes and butternut squash are not holding out as well for me, so I would say eat them now if you have not already. Hope you are all still finding great things to do with the black turtle beans…and enjoying the cheese fully! 

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Sunday, 24 January 2010 11:43

Spaghetti Squash Hash

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pork-frittata-rs-671375-lBelow is a note from Nina, one of the Fort Greene members, with some delicious meal ideas.  I know that a list of dishes is often more helpful to me than a bunch of recipes, since they get my wheels turning, but I can still make the meals my own.

The list from my kitchen, thus far through the CSA season, includes: Sauteed Onion and Potato Frittata with Parmesan (pictured), Potato and Carrot Hash with Poached Eggs, Roasted Squash and Spelt Berry Salad with a Mustard & White Wine Vinegar Dressing, Roasted Carrots And Beets with Fresh Ginger and Farro, Mom’s Apple Cake (again, pictured, thought this is not the one I made.  see Smitten Kitchen for more information).


Hi Annie-
I am having a great time with all of my new foods. Having interesting produce has truly jump-started my cooking habit, and made me much more apt to have people over to my place to eat!

Last night I made
-carrot-pumpkin-ginger soup with sour cream and sage
-spaghetti squash - parmesan patties with apple sauce
- sauteed beet salad with onions and feta over romaine and those beautiful watermelon radishes

Here is the spaghetti squash recipe I found online. Easy and tasty, highly recommend!

Spaghetti Squash Hash Browns

1 Medium Spaghetti Squash, cooked 1/3 cups all-purpose Flour (or try Whole Wheat Flour for a healthier dish)
1/2 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
4 Tablespoons Butter or Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste
Sour cream garnish (optional)

1. Prepare and cook squash (see basic methods above).
2. Mix squash strands with flour and cheese.
3. Heat 1 Tablespoon Butter or Olive Oil in skillet over medium-high heat.
4. Spoon 1/4 cup of squash mixture into skillet.
5. Pat and press the squash mixture to form a thick “hash brown” cake.
6. Cook until bottom is lightly browned.
7. Turn hash brown over and cook the other side until lightly browned.
8. Continue with remaining squash mixture, adding butter or oil to the skillet as needed.
9. Sprinkle with Salt and Pepper to taste.
10. serve with a dollop of sour cream if desired.

Serves 4-6

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Sunday, 24 January 2010 11:41

Winter CSA Potluck 2010

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To celebrate the season, we’ll be hosting a Paisley Farm CSA Potluck for all members, friends, and family this Wednesday, January 27 at d.b.a. in Williamsburg.There’s no pick-up that day, so we hope you’ll take the opportunity to come meet your fellow CSA members, share a favorite dish, and enjoy drink specials from the bar.

Paisley Farm Winter CSA Potluck
Wednesday January 27, 2010
7 - 9pm
d.b.a., Williamsburg
113 N. 7th St.
(between Berry and Wythe, L to Bedford)

Thanks again for being a member of Paisley Farm CSA, and looking forward to seeing you at the potluck!

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Thursday, 27 January 2011 11:39

Squash and Local Winter Eating…

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Isquahers't was brought to the farm’s attention recently that some folks had bad winter squash in their shares… making some question how “fresh” the items being delivered are. There was only a small small fraction that were “bad” with over 95% being quite good with quality entirely maintained. In the world of local eating by the season and thus in our CSA. Unlike a grocery store, where items are shipped in everyday from all over the world, from locales with very different climates and growing seasons, all the CSA food is from local farms. Local farms that harvest as the land and weather determines here, selecting storage crops to enjoy over the winter months. Winter squash, true to it’s name sake, it considered “winter” due to its hard outer skin which allows for storing despite being harvested earlier.

This squash in your boxes was harvested in November and has been stored properly since then, culling out of bad ones as need be. This it the way of local eating. You will not always have 100% perfection and coupled with all the rain of this past year, some of those squash just don’t make it to their final edible endings. Fret not though as there is a beautiful and connecting feeling in knowing you are eating by a time table that is not controlled by grocery managers, stock prices or the food system that has no seasons, no faces and will never tell you no to raspberries in February. So embrace your bad squash and compost it or eat it up super fast if you notice spoilage taking place. A quick slice, peel and trim is all you need to take the remaining good bits to a roasting pan to be cooked and enjoyed. Also, take note that storing these squash in over heated apartments (I know, totally out of most of our control, but worth nothing) does not help either, so try your best to keep these babies cool. 

After a proper burial for the squash lost to the good storage fight, celebrate the replacements that are ready for you! There will be an extra box at the CSA drop offs this week where any bad squash will be happily replaced! 

You lose one squash… and you gain another. Now doesn’t that feel better?  

butternut!Now that we’re on the subject of Butternut Squash, it is one of the uniquely American foods. The word “squash” comes from a Native American (Massachuset Indian) word meaning “eaten raw or uncooked,” though today we consume most of our squashes cooked. Part of the North American Food Package along with beans and soughum (each continent has a given food package of native foods,) butternut squash is thus puritanically American. Particular apples, concord grapes and maple syrup are also foods with an American birth right. Speaking of maple syrup….

Maple syrup is coming next week! Drum roll please and for your enjoyment links to a recipe and article on perfect pancakes if the syrup makes its way to a brunch near you. Maple syrup is one of the original American foods, with history telling the Indians taught the early settlers this practice. Much like how we have to store foods after harvesting, the Indians did the same and maple syrup, made after boiling off the water from maple sap of the tapped trees, added sweetness and variety to their diets into the winter months and beyond. Depending on the tribe, there are varying legends as to how maple syrup was first made, but there is no denying its role in today’s food stuffs. Now that natural eating is the only way to go with many steering clear of refined cane sugar, this sweetener is like liquid gold. With a characteristic aroma and flavor, few can deny the goodness of real and pure maple syrup. In fact, making sugar in North America is one of the toughest agricultural challenges. Some other countries have the ability to grow and process sugar easily but here we must extract sugars from plants, saps, etc. 

Make it with Maple Ideas:

<> Perfect Pancakes! recipe included My Pancake Recipe

<> Use in oatmeal, baking or sweetening tea… Swirl into yogurt….

<> Spread over toast or make a maple salad dressing, adding in toasted nuts and a good cheese…

<> Combine equal parts with Dijon mustard for a spread to put on chicken or pork before roasting… 

<> Drizzle over french toast, bread puddings, ice cream….

<> Maple glazed parsnips and/or carrots make a tasty side dish…

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Thursday, 03 February 2011 11:38

Week 3!

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It’s Week Three! happy carrot

An exciting box this week is coming to you…complete with the maple syrup talked about last week. The box contains:

Maple Syrup

Apples… organic & local

Mesclun mix greens from the Green House

Red Beets


Potatoes…chippowa or russet



Red or Black beans 

and more local delicious Cheese!

Of course, menu ideas are still bouncing along with hashes and poached eggs. Stuffed onions and beet soups keep you warm, and who says salads disappear in the winter? The greens are a perfect way to keep raw foods in your diet during this season. The carrots I have been trimming of the woody core (compost it!) and turning into a sesame and carrot slaw of sorts or stuffing grated carrots into sandwiches. 

Getting the Local Harvest newsletter, this past week I noticed a great winter recipe from a close neighbor of ours here in upstate New York. Though being on the other side of the Hudson, New Paltz is a fun little town, with plenty of local eaters as well. 

Thank you Local Harvest Newsletter 

Cheese and Potato Tart

This tart recipe was shared with us by Agnes Devereux of The Village TeaRoom Restaurant and Bake Shop in New Paltz, NY.

It’s delicious winter food — dense with potatoes and heavy with cream and cheese. The original recipe calls for Toussaint cheese, a raw milk cheese The TeaRoom gets from Sproutcreek Farm in Poughkeepsie, NY. Cheddar or another semi-soft cheese may be substituted. Serve with an escarole salad or other bitter greens.

For the crust:
One recipe of your favorite pie, tart, or pate brisée crust for a 8? spring form pan

Serves 4

For the filling:

  • 1 ¼ lbs Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 ¼ c. whole milk (no ultra pasteurized)
  • 1 c. heavy cream (no ultra pasteurized))
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 T. butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced into ½” pieces
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 8 oz. Toussaint cheese, crust removed and grated or cut into ¼” thick slices, OR 8 oz. grated cheddar or cheese of your choice

Line the spring form pan with refrigerated crust and chill for 30 minutes. Bake at 375 degrees until cooked but not browned, 15 – 20 minutes. Turn the oven down to 350.

Combine potatoes with 1 c. of the milk, cream, 1 sprig thyme and 1 garlic clove. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a gentle boil. Lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Discard thyme and garlic and let potatoes cool in the liquid.

Warm the butter in a pan over medium to low heat and add the onions, remaining thyme, garlic and salt and pepper until the onions are translucent and tender, about 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat, discard thyme and garlic and set aside to cool.

Drain the potatoes, straining the milk and cream into a liquid measuring cup. If necessary, add extra milk to equal 1 ¼ c. liquid. In a bowl whisk together the egg and a pinch of nutmeg and then add the milk and cream mixture. Season with salt and pepper and whisk to combine.

Scatter ½ the onions, half the potatoes and ½ the cheese in the baked tart shell. Then add make a second layer with the remaining onions and potatoes. Top with the remaining cheese. Pour the milk/egg mixture over the filling and cover with foil. Make sure foil is tented and not touching the surface of the tart.

Bake for about 45 minutes, remove foil and bake a further 15 minutes. Let cool for 30 -60 minutes before serving.

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Friday, 05 February 2010 18:26

Taking a Moment with Maple

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Hello, your Maple Syrup here.

I love a good breakfast meeting but sometimes I like to feel a little more sexy and smooth… especially with Valentines coming up. Here is a simple way to make me into mousse.

6 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
3 Egg yolks
pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla or…
1 to 2 teaspoons grated orange peel* optional
1 cup heavy cream

Combine syrup, yolks and salt in a double boiler… Whisk constantly until mixture is thick and coats the back of a wooden spoon…this will look like marshmallow cream, and color will become tan and darkened… about 5-7 minutes.

Take care not to overcook this mixture so it doesn’t curdle. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla OR orange peel. Place over a bowl of ice if you want to cool this mixture quicker… but allow to cool.

Whip the cream until firm but not dry peaks form…Once mixture is cool, fold in the cream in two editions.

Refrigerate or freeze in ramekins…if frozen, let sit for 20-30 minutes to soften.

Serve with walnut cookies or glazed hazelnuts or sliced pears or stewed apples…

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Tuesday, 30 November 1999 00:00

Back to Basics

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Simple Root Veggie Medley, contributed by Alice Eisenberg

Take all the root veggies from the share and cut into equal size chunks- sweet potato’s, squashes, pumpkins, potato’s, onions or whatever you have at home (cooking time depends on the size you cut veggies too). Toss all of the ingredients in olive oil, kosher salt, fresh ground pepper. Rough chop a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and thyme and toss with root veggies. Pre-heat oven to 350. I make my chunks of veggies about an inch or so big. some squashes can take a bit longer to cook… I use a baking sheet and put a single layer of veggies with 1/2 cup orange juice. Roast for about an hour til soft and enjoy.

Alice lives on the east side of Williamsburg and works in Park Slope and rarely feels a reason to leave the boro. She has been know to spend more hours in foreign countries in supermarkets than on the beach.

Golden Hubbard Squash Soup, contributed by Matt Temkin

Start by cutting up and roasting the squash in the oven at 375 for 45 minutes in a water bath. Let the squash cool, and start your soup base in a pot on the stove. I used 1 red onion from the box, along with 6 cloves of garlic. Dice the onion and sweat until almost translucent and add the garlic, minced.

Extract the flesh from the squash and blend to a smooth consistency. (Here I added 1 thumb of ginger.) You may need to add water to your blender of squash. (Some of this water should be the water bath.)

Place all ingredients in the pot (with the onions and garlic) and simmer. Add a teaspoon of kosher salt, a half teaspoon of pepper, and cinnamon to taste.

Matt is a drummer/percussionist. He plays drums at Stephen Wise Free SynagogueNational Yiddish Theatre/Folksbiene. “On Second Avenue” starring Mike Burstyn, and “A Yiddish Vaudville” starring the late Bruce Adler. He is currently playing percussion for “The Big Bupkis” at the New Yiddish Rep. He also leads his own band, Matt Temkin’s Yiddishe Jam Band, which has recently released their first album Poykler’s Shloft Lied. Along with concerts they are available to play private parties.

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Wednesday, 10 February 2010 18:24

Snow Day!!

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“Wow, it really snowed last night! Isn’t it wonderful?Everything familiar has disappeared! The world looks brand new! 

A new year…a fresh clean start !It’s like having a big white sheet of paper to draw on! A day full of possibilities! It’s a magical world, Hobbes, ol’ buddy…let’s go exploring!” 

–Bill Watterson: It’s a Magical World: A Calvin and Hobbes Collection

If you’re in the city, you’re getting more than we are up here…but it’s a blustery snow day. Perfect for fire building… skiing… or cooking a big pot of beans if you still have them around! The easiest way to tackle this is to quick soak the beans, and then chop up all the veggies you have left around… making a great big pot of vegetable and bean soup or stew (depending on how hearty your selection ends up being.) 

Here is the best way to soak beans but for a quick soak, follow this process but only allow the beans to soak after the first boil for 1 to 2 hours:

Beans require a two step process of soaking and cooking. Soaking the beans allows the starches that cause gas to start to dissolve, while the cooking makes the beans tender and digestible. Most of the gas causing starches will be in the soaking water, so always drain the beans after a soak, and use clean water when cooking them. This can be used for any beans (except lentils and dried peas which do not require a soak,) and the cooking times will vary a bit by bean, as some take longer than others to become tender. 

According to the California Dry Bean Advisory Board, this is the best method for gas free beans: 

SOAK: Place 1 pound of dried beans (washed and sorted) in a 5 quart sauce pan with 10 or more cups of boiling water, and boil for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat, cover, and set aside overnight. By morning 70-90% of the indigestible sugars will be in soaking water. Drain and rinse beans thoroughly, then proceed with cooking. 

COOK:  Do not add acidic ingredients when cooking beans, or wait until the end of cooking to do so. These ingredients will stop the process by which beans absorb liquid and soften, causing a much slower cooking. Test doneness by pressing or mashing the beans in between two fingers, or with a fork. 

–Return the beans to the sauce pan, and cover with 3 times their volume in water. Add herbs or spices but no salt. 

–Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally. Do not boil the beans again, as this will cause the skins to rupture. Add more water if needed, and begin testing beans after about 45-60 minutes.

–Beans can be eaten right after cooking, or used in recipes, but you can also freeze beans for later use. (1 pound of beans will yield 5-6 cups cooked.)

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We are an organic farm in Tivoli, NY, with four CSA sites in New York City. We also run a distribution company that represents small family farms in upstate NY.

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