|Arugula already going to seed in the greenhouse in late March|
COMPANION PLANTING: a few years back I had problems with the flea beetles eating my lettuce. I raise a large variety of lettuces for market and my CSA shares and was quite concerned about the damage the beetles were causing. In one of my mesclen plantings I noticed the lettuce was undisturbed and the arugula planted with it was full of holes. After closer inspection of all the greens I discovered that the beetles prefered the spicy greens (arugula, mustard, mache etc.) to the lettuse. Now I plant large patches of arugula next to the lettuce beds to attract the flea bettles. The flea beetles are usually a problem in the early spring and then they lay their eggs to over winter and hatch the following spring. I read that if you would keep the weeds and debry out of your garden you won't have to much trouble with them. Well, we pull every weed by hand instead of using chemical sprays and we mulch heavily to conserve water so I guess we will just have to feed them arugula through the spring.
Give this green a try you just may like it----or maybe not------
ARUGULA and FIG SALAD
4 cups arugula
8 fresh figs (Sarah has yummy figs at the Ansestor Square Market)
1/4 c. grated Parmesan Cheese
4 tbs. toasted pinenuts
2 tbs. honey
2 tbs. balsamic vinegar
Toss washed, dried and torn arugula, figs, cheese, and pinenuts in a bowl. Whisk honey and vinegar together. Pour over salad before serving.
ARUGULA PESTO SAUCE
3c. arugula, packed----wash and dry well
1/3c. pinenuts toasted
1/2c. fresh grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 tsp. salt
1 large clove garlic chopped
3 tbs. olive oil
Add all ingredients except olive oil into a food processor. Chop until fine. Add oil in a slow, steady stream while blending. Blend until smooth. This will keep in a fridge for a week. Add hot water if it is to thick.
BACON AND ARUGULA SALAD
washed, dried, torn Arugula
1 lb. bacon chopped
2 large eggs--from our hens of course
1/4c. cider vinegar
2 tbs. honey
dash of paprika, salt & pepper
1/2 stick unsalted butter
Cook bacon until crisp. Set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, vinegar, honey, paprika, salt and pepper. Warm milk in a large saucepan. Remove from heat add butter. When butter is melted add 1/2 of the warm milk to the egg mixture. Whisking constantly; pour this mixture into the remaining pan of milk. Cook over medium-low heat. Do not over-heat the eggs will curdle. Pour over torn arugula. Add bacon on top. Serve immediately.
CORN, ESCAROLE AND ARUGULA SALAD
3 tbs. Balsamic vinegar
freshly ground pepper and sea salt
3 tbs. extra virgin olive oil
1 small garlic clove minced
6 cups trimmed escarole or curly endive
2 cups arugula
fresh uncooked corn
Wash greens, spin or pat dry. Tear into pieces. In a large salad bowl whisk vinegar, salt and pepper. Add olive oil in a thin stream whisking constantly. Whisk in minced garlic.
Using a very sharp knife cut kernels from the corn. Stir kernels into the vinaigrette. Add greens and toss until the leaves are coated with the dressing. Plate the salad. Scoop corn kernels left on the bottom of the bowl onto the top of each salad serving.