Saturday, April 16, 2011

Passover Seder: A reason to Gather and Reflect

Rio Gozo Ventura CSA is a diverse community unified by a love of food and farm. With Passover coming up, this is an excellent opportunity to reflect on what's important- family and sharing good food.

Here are some recipes and photos I've adapted from Real Simple on how to use the CSA to make the Seder (This menu is not Kosher or Vegetarian but can be used as a source of inspiration).


Something Bitter to represent the taste of servitude and slavery

(Dandelion Greens, Arugula, or Romaine Lettuce, and Beets)

Poached Salmon Salad With Beets
Place salmon in a skillet and season with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Add ¼ cup vinegar and enough water to half cover the fish.
Cover and simmer over medium heat until salmon is opaque and beginning to flake, 12 to 15 minutes.
Transfer to a plate and refrigerate until cool, 15 to 20 minutes. Using a fork, flake the salmon into bite-size pieces.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine sour cream, horseradish, remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
In individual bowls, combine greens, salmon, and beets. Drizzle with the dressing and sprinkle with the dill.
Adapted from Real Simple
By Sara Quessenberry, August 2008


Horseradish Potato Gratin (not Kosher)

Horseradish Potato Gratin


Heat oven to 375° F. Butter a shallow 3-quart baking dish. In a large bowl, combine the cream, horseradish, nutmeg, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Add the potatoes and toss to coat.
Transfer the potato mixture to the prepared baking dish, pressing gently to submerge the potatoes. Cover the dish with foil, place on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and bake until the potatoes are tender and the top is golden, 50 to 65 minutes.
By Kate Merker, December 2008 Real Simple

Baytzah and an Orange

Hard Boiled Egg and an orange on each plate to mourn loss and groups still suffering from discrimination

(Range fed Eggs and Citrus from the CSA)


Something Fresh dipped in Salt water to represent tears of the ancestors shed during enslavement

(Spinach, Red Leaf Lettuce, Radish, and Celery)

Dipped in Lemon and Salt


Something Sweet that represents mortar and serves as a reminder of freedom

Chopped dried fruits, nuts, with wine or pomegranate juice


Slow cooked Coffee-Braised Brisket with Carrots and Turnips

The shank or blood represents the marking on the homes upon which death would pass over.

For Vegetarians replace the meat with roasted root vegetables: Beets, Carrots, Turnips

(Beacon Coffee, Carrots, & Turnips)

Slow-Cooker Coffee-Braised Brisket With Potatoes and Carrots


1 or 2 bunches of turnips, peeled and cubed
kosher salt and black pepper
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
1/2 cup brewed black coffee
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce (not Kosher)
2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar
country bread (optional)
In the bottom of a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker, combine the onion and carrots. Season the beef with 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper and place on top of the vegetables.
In a small bowl, whisk together the tomato paste, Beacon coffee, Worcestershire sauce (not Kosher), and brown sugar; pour over the beef and vegetables. Cover and cook on low until the beef and vegetables are tender, 7 to 8 hours.
Slice the beef across the grain and serve with the vegetables and sauce, sprinkled with the parsley. Serve with the bread, if desired.
By Vanessa Seder, Real Simple January 2011


Flourless Chocolate Cake


Flourless Chocolate Cake
José Picayo


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter (not Kosher), cut into pieces, plus more for the pan
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for the pan
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream (not Kosher)
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup crème fraîche or sour cream (not Kosher)
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting
Heat oven to 350° F. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and dust with cocoa powder.
In a medium saucepan, heat the butter with ¼ cup of the heavy cream over medium-low heat until the butter is melted. Add the chocolate and stir until melted and smooth; remove from heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, granulated sugar, and cocoa powder; whisk in the chocolate mixture.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake until puffed and set, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 1 hour. Run a knife around the edge of the cake before unmolding.
Using an electric mixer, beat the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream with the crème fraîche and confectioners’ sugar until soft peaks form. Dust the cake with confectioners’ sugar and serve with the whipped cream.
By Sara Quessenberry, November 2010

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Community Supported Agriculture

Support Locally Grown Food

There is plenty of gozo at Rio Gozo Farm. That is JOY in Spanish and joy is one of the most dependable products we have. Gozo is commonly found in gardens and farms. Once you get a little gozo up and going it is very tolerant of most pests, withstands dry periods, and grows with a modicum of fertilizer. After gozo becomes a staple of one's diet, it goes with about anything. Actually folks crave it so much it is a wonder everyone does not have a patch of it growing close at hand. Grab up some gozo and get with the flow.