Church Farm Ardeley

A Free Range Experience

Sauteed Komatsuna with Basil

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Ok, so I was going to do parsnips this week as it is the first time this year that we have been able to include them in the boxes. This is a huge excitement for me, I love parsnips, and organic ones just smell and taste so much better!

But, after chatting to some of our lovely customers about the stranger items present in the box, I realised that I had overlooked something.

Please welcome to the stage: Komatusna greens! These beautiful waxy green leaves have been in the boxes for a while now, but for some reason it never occurred to me to cook them. In winter months, I tend to avoid stir fries and cook more filling, fatty comfort foods, but this week I am in need of a vitamin fix. And these greens are just so attractive, with their deep colour and lovely paddle shape. They look like some sort of exotic, vegetable based fan, you know, the ones they used in the olden days to cool down emperors and such like in the heat of the day.

I digress. So, for us lay folk, komatsuna is a leafy form of a wild turnip. We grow quite a lot of it on the farm because it is just so hardy, nothing can kill this plant apart from the harshest of weathers. So, despite our freak weather systems this year, our komatsuna crop has done wonderfully!

I found this recipe on a lady’s blog called chubby bunny recipes. It’s a lovely website, go and check it out. This involves sautéing komatsuna with basil, something that would never have occurred to me and so I was really keen to try. I served the sautéed greens with a simply tomato and red onion salad, and a hunk of freshly baked bread, for a light and healthy lunch.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 shallot thinly sliced
  • 50g pine nuts
  • 200g komatsuna leaves
  • 2 cups whole basil leaves
  • Salt and pepper

Method:

Toast the pine nuts in a dry pan over a high heat, and put to one side. Fry the garlic and shallot in the olive oil and a little bit of butter, until softened. Slice the komatsuna leaves and add to the pan, with a splash of water to help them cook down and become tender. Stir in the basil leaves until they have just wilted. Serve straight away.

You can also use komatsuna in salads, as a braised veg, or in pickling! When you receive your greens, pop them in the fridge and use as soon as possible to retain maximum freshness.

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