Yukina and Other Asian Greens, with Garlic Ginger Sauce

Debbie Jagoda

Wednesday, November 30, 2016 at 12:00:00 am

Yukina and Other Asian Greens with Garlic Ginger Sauce


This is the first week of our fall/winter 2016 CSA in partnership with Hilltop Hanover Farm.  The list of veggies we received from the farm yesterday includes one that I've never had before (at least, not that I know of) -- yukina.  According to this post on the farm's website,http://www.hilltophanoverfarm.org/tag/yukina-savoy/, yukina savoy is an Asian spinach, and our farmer, Michelle, just emailed us:  "Yukina is a asian leafy green. It is very similar to a coviar long stemmed spinach and can be used similarly.  Don't be intimidated it is delicious and easy to use!" 


It sounds like a perfect green to use in this recipe for greens with garlic ginger sauce.  The original recipe that I found on-line calls for Asian greens such as napa cabbage, bok choy, and mizuna, so I'm sure yukina will fit right in, but I've also made this with kale and any other greens I happened to have on hand.  I've served this on numerous occasions, both for family and guests, and it's always a big hit.  (If it looks familiar, that's because I've posted a similar recipe on the blog before -- it's one of my go-to recipes!)  Don't hesitate to use a lot of greens.  (In addition to the yukina, today's share may also include lettuce, and I may add that to the dish too!)  The greens shrink down a great deal.  And in any event, no matter how much of this I cook, it all gets eaten!  


  • 1 1/2 lbs greens 
  • 2 tablespoons canola or safflower oil
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped garlic
  • 1/3 cup chicken broth, vegetable stock, or water 
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon mirin (Asian rice wine vinegar)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger root, peeled and minced


  1. In a glass or measuring cup, stir together the broth, soy sauce, mirin, and cornstarch, until the cornstarch is dissolved.
  2. In a large pan or wok, sautée garlic and ginger in oil over medium heat until lightly browned, 
  3. Add greens to the pan, stir-frying until greens are slightly wilted.
  4. Stir the cornstarch mixture, add it to the pan, and cook for a few minutes until the greens are tender but still bright green, and the sauce is thickened.

          The original recipe, which can be found here https://www.botanicalinterests.com/biblog/sauteed-asian-spring-greens-with-garlic-ginger-sauce/, said to serve this over rice, but I just serve it as is, as a side dish.




Indian Eggplant - Bhurtha

Debbie Jagoda

Tuesday, August 2, 2016 at 6:00:00 pm

In the past couple of weeks, we've received two different kinds of eggplant from Hilltop Hanover Farm!  One variety was long, with dark purple skin, and about the same diameter as bananas.  The other variety was small, with light purple and white skin.  I used the dark purple eggplants and a bunch of the little eggplants in this dish that, according to allrecipes.com, is a traditional North Indian (Punjabi) Bhurtha.  It uses a combination of spices that I'd never used before, but both Andy and I really enjoyed it.  The original recipe calls for serving it with roti or naan ( IIndian breads), but I served with a warm potato salad made from potatoes from the CSA, some chopped fresh dill and a little mayonnaise and salt.  Here's how I made the egglant bhurtha.  To watch a video on allrecipes.com showing the preparation of the original recipe (and to get a link to a printable copy of the original recipe), click here.   


1 large eggplant or an approximately equivalent quantity of smaller eggplants
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 medium onion sliced
1 tsp chopped fresh ginger
1 large tomato or 2 medium tomatoes, diced (or canned diced tomatoes)  (The video provides instructions for how to peel and seed the tomatoes before dicing them.  I didn't bother to do this and didn't notice either the skin or the seeds in the finished dish.)
1 clove garlic, mnced
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin (I didn't have any, so I used additional cumin seeds instead)
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional) (I don't like things too hot, so I used just a sprinkle of cayenne.  It was flavorful enough without it!)
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 chopped fresh cilantro (optional) 


 1.  Char the outside of the eggplant.  This can be done in either of two ways.  Either grill the eggplant, turning it frequently until the skin is blackened or at least blistering.  Or place the eggplant in the oven, directly under the broiler and cook it (turning it frequently) until the skin is blackened and blistering.  Cover it while it cools, then peel off the skin and discard it.  (You might find it easier to slice the eggplant in half and then scoop out the flesh.)  Chop up the flesh and set it aside.  Note:  Cooking the eggplant this way gives it a nice smokey flavor, especially if you grill it.  On the other hand, the texture is very soft.  Some people who commented on the recipe on the internet preferred the texture they got from peeling the eggplant while raw, slicing it, salting it, and then letting it sit for about 30 minutes before patting it dry and chopping it up.  

2.  Heat the oil in a large frying pan or wok over medium heat.  Add the cumin seeds and let them crackle for a seconds to toast.  They can turn golden brown, but be careful not to burn them.  Add the onion, ginger and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but not brown.  Stir in the tomato, then add the turmeric, ground cumin, ground coriander, cayenne pepper (if you're using it), salt and pepper.  Cook and stir for a few minutes.

3.  Add the eggplant to to the pan and cook it with the other ingredients, stirring occasionally, so that some of the moisture evaporates. The original recipe said to cook it for 10 to 15 minutes; I probably cooked it for a bit less.  Taste, and adjust seasonings as needed.  Garnish with cilantro if desired and serve.


String Beans with Pecans and Maple Vinaigrette

Debbie Jagoda

Sunday, July 31, 2016 at 12:00:00 pm

Last week's delivery from our CSA contained a big bag of string beans.  When I was growing up, my mom used to cook frozen string beans or green beans a lot and I thought they were ok, but the beans from our CSA were MUCH better.  As my husband Andy has commented more than few times since GHC's CSA started, vegetables taste really good (and very different) when hey're fresh.  Adding an interesting dressing to them also enhances the flavor.  Here's how I made them,  For the original recipe, from realsimple.com,, click here.


2 pounds string beans
     (I didn't weigh the strings beans I was using - I just used all that we had. In terms of volume, it was probably about 4 cups, loosely packed.)
1/2 to 3/4 cup pecans
2 TBS red wine vinegar
2 TBS mustard 
     (The original recipe calls for Dijon mustard, which I didn't have, so I used Gulden's spicy brown mustard instead.  This would probably taste sharper with Dijon, but the Gulden's has a complex, pungent, deli-mustardiness that tasted great with the beans.)
1 TBS maple syrup
1 or 2 TBS olive oil  
      (The original recipe calls for 1./4 cup olive oil, but i always try to cut down on the amount of oil that I use. I started doing this to cut down on calories and fat, but I also don't miss the extra oil. If anything, it seems that the other flavors shine through more,) 
salt & pepper


1. Toast the pecans. This can be done either in the oven or in a fying pan.  For the oven method, preheat the oven to 400°F, spread the pecans in a rimmed baking sheet and bake for a few minutes, stirring them around at least once.  For the frying pan method, place the pecans in a fying pan, turn on the heat, and stir for a few minutes.  Either way, be careful not to burn them!  After removing the pecans from the heat, let them cool.  Then "roughly chop" them or just break them up into smaller pieces with your hands.

2.  Wash the string beans and trim off the stem end.  (You can also trim off the tip if you want.)  Cook them for just a few minutes, until tender.  My preferred method for doing this is in the microwave, since they cook in their own juices and no additional water is needed.  Just put the beans in a glass bowl, cover it with plastic wrap, and microwave.  I "nuked" mine for 3 minutes, which left them about half-cooked, then let them sit still covered with the plastic wrap until they were tender.  I then removed the plastic wrap.  By then,they were cool enough so that I didn't think they would continue cooking themselves to the point of mushiness  If they're still hot, and you want to be sure they won't keep cooking, you can put them in a colander and run them under cool water.

3.  For the vinaigrette, mix together the oil, vinegar, mustard, maple syrup. Add salt & pepper to taste.  

4.  Pour the vinaigrette over the string beans, add the toasted pecans and stir to combine.