Organic vegetable box
Mission Christmas Dinner: the veg
Steph Barnard is on a mission to find a complete Christmas dinner. But it all has to be locally-produced. First up: the veg. Find out how she got on.
The veg - River Swale Farm organic veg company
Mary and Chris Watson run an organic fruit and veg company. They're based in Woodseats in Sheffield, but River Swale Farm itself is in North Yorkshire. Mary tells us all about the veg box business.
:: So what can you expect to see from one of Swale Farm's veg boxes?
Carrots and parsnips
"We do seasonal veg throughout the year - there's all the stuff that you'd expect, as well as some you might not. People have rung us up before to ask what they should do with things like celeriac, which has a lovely mild celery flavour. It's brilliant mashed with potato or roasted in a tray of roast vegetables or in a casserole - it's really versatile.
"Kohlrabi is also commonly asked about - it sounds very exotic but actually it's German for 'cabbage-turnip' I think. Its a funny looking sputnik-like vegetable. Again that's very versatile and can be steamed, boiled or roasted, made into gratin or made into a salad. Apparently you can also eat it raw like an apple! I think it's got a milder taste than a turnip."
:: Brussels sprouts always cause some controversy...
"Yes, some people love them, some people hate them - but you can guarantee they're going to turn up in your Christmas dinner whether you like it or not! In the Christmas box will be sprouts on their stalks which keeps them really fresh until the big day.
:: Recipe: Brussel Sprouts with Bacon and Almonds
"Parboil the sprouts until tender but not overcooked. Fry bacon and almonds gently in a little butter. Add sprouts and cook gently for 2-3 minutes, stirring. Remove from the heat and add double cream and zest of half a lemon. Return to the heat and cook for about four minutes to reduce to a thick sauce. You can then put them in a baking dish with gruyere cheese and pop under the grill. It'll convert the most ardent sprout hater!"
:: Click on the 'Cold Turkey' link on the right of the page for more post-Christmas turkey suggestions
last updated: 21/12/2007 at 13:25