Week 13; September 15, 2011

Harvest Party on September 17th at the farm!  Potluck!  Beginning at 3 PM.  Camping is welcome.  Hope you can make it out!

Directions to the farm:

The favorite and most beautiful drive option:  Take Hwy 36 East out of the Twin Cities through Stillwater.  Take the lift bridge across the St. Croix and follow Hwy 64 East for close to 70 miles.  At County Hwy SS, turn Left (north).  Stay on SS for 2 miles.  Turn Right on 83rd Street and follow for about 2 more miles.  At County Highway AA, turn Right.  Turnip Rock Farm will be about a half mile down the road on your left.  8628 County Highway AA, New Auburn, WI.

If you want to avoid Stillwater traffic, you can take I-94 East to Highway 25 North (Menomonie, WI exit) to 64 East and follow the rest of the directions above.  Either way the trip takes around 2 hours (more if traffic is backed up in Stillwater).  We hope to see you at the farm!  Please call or email if you have any questions.
What’s in the box?

Full and Single Share have the same things, just less of them in the Single Share box…

Pie Pumpkin(s)

green top carrots

broccoli

heirloom tomatoes

slicer tomatoes

green/red peppers

red onions

cucumbers

basil


Notes on the box….

Don’t store the Basil in your fridge!!  It will turn black!  Keep it in a glass of water like a bouquet on your counter and enjoy the smell in your kitchen.  Eat it up soon!  You can slice the leaves up (or leave the whole) and add them to a salad of cucumbers and tomatoes and red onion with a little vinegar and oil. Or you can mix it into pasta along with cut up tomatoes and some olive oil and parmesan cheese.  Always add basil as soon to serving the dish as you can to preserve the color.  We are sad to say this will be the first and last week for basil this year.  We couldn’t fit it into the previous boxes and now we are going to get a hard frost tonight.  It really doesn’t like cold weather.  Ugh.  Enjoy it while it’s here!

This could very likely be the last week for tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers as well.  We will see.  Not the best year for tomatoes.  Lots of black spot and splitting from the wet spring and early summer.  Hopefully the frost doesn’t get them tonight.  We have another planting that is not yet ripe, but looks great.  We will see.  We may have green tomatoes in the boxes next week…

Green top carrots the tops should be removed and then the carrots can be stored in a plastic bag.  they will last a very long time that way.  The leafy part of the green tops are edible.  Some folks like to use it as you would parsley.  If you don’t remove the tops from the carrots, they will stop being crisp and go all bendy.  You can remove the tops by snapping them off, or you can eat the carrot up to the top which is a fun thing to do.  Get the kids to do it and send us pictures!  Oh, you can also add the tops to make soup stock along with your broccoli stems (if you don’t eat them first) and the outside layer of your onions when you peel them.

Store the Pie Pumpkins out of your fridge.  They will keep for a long time if you can’t get to them right away.  But really, wouldn’t this weekend be a nice time to bake some pumpkin bread or to have roast pumpkin with butter?  I think so.  If you find yourself frustrated that your pumpkin is sitting on your counter uncooked every time you have an idea for baking, I recommend roasting your pumpkin any time that you are going to be baking something then storing it in your fridge so that it’s ready when you are to make it into soup, bread, bars, or a pumpkin smoothie!  It can also be halved, seeded, then peeled with a vegetable peeler or knife and cubed and cooked stovetop for stirfries or soups.

Recipes…

Roasted Pie Pumpkin (works for all winter squash)

To roast your pumpkin, cut it in half and scoop out the seeds.  Lightly oil a baking dish, put about 1/4 inch water into the dish (optional, if you don’t add water, your pumpkin will get kind of carmelized where the flesh is touching the pan), place your pumpkin halves cut side down in the dish and then into the oven at 350-425 until you can poke a fork easily into the pumpkin.  When cool enough you should be able to either peel off the skin or scoop the flesh out.  This roasting method is good for all squash, which you will be getting squash every week for the reminder of the season.  Lots of different varieties and all very tasty!

Roasted Broccoli  

While you are roasting that pumpkin, you can also try  roasted broccoli.  This works best with the oven at 425.  Wash and dry the broccoli, cut into florets and peel and cube the stalk.  Toss with a little bit of olive oil.  Put in a single layer on a baking sheet and put it in the oven until it’s lightly browning on the florets.  Take out of the oven and top with some lemon zest (optional), parmesan cheese, salt, a squeeze of lemon juice (optional), and some toasted nuts or seeds of your choice.

Vegetable Soup Stock

You can put just about any kind of veggies into the soup stock. It’s a great way to squeeze every last bit of nutrition from those your veggies. It is also a great way to use things in the fridge that may be less than fresh and also to use the parts of veggies that you don’t eat such as carrot tops, broccoli stalks, carrot peels, onion skins, squash peels, stems from greens, pepper cores, even corn cobs!  One member keeps told us that she keeps all her scraps in an empty ice cream tub in the fridge all week then makes stock when it’s convenient for her.  The flavor will vary depending on what you put into the stock. You can put in whole over ripe tomatoes, but your stock will taste very tomato-y, so keep that in mind. Put all the veggies and veggie scraps into a pot and cover your ingredients with water to about two inches over the veggies.  Add some whole pepper corns.  Bring to a boil and let simmer for about an hour. Cool and strain. You can add the stock back to the pot and continue to boil to reduce it and concentrate the flavor if you want.  You can freeze the cooled stock in ice cube trays to have the stock on hand to add to rice when you cook it or to use in place of those cartons of stock.  To make chicken or beef stock, you can add the bones after a meal to the veggies in the boiling stage.  

Pumpkin Smoothie Recipe (makes one serving)

Blend together adding more liquid as needed to get the right consistency:

1/2 cup  cooked pumpkin (roasted or steamed tender)
1/2 cup yogurt (plain, vanilla, or maple) OR milk, soymilk, coconut milk, or almond milk
handful of ice cubes or a frozen banana
1/4 cup apple juice or cider (optional)
2 tablespoons honey (or brown sugar, to taste)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Dash ground nutmeg

It’s comfort food time and this recipe for Maccaroni and Cheese with Broccoli is sounding like dinner to me!

I have not tried this yet, but have heard that it’s good.  Braised Cucumbers

On the Farm…..

We did a whole lot of scrambling around after harvesting and packing to cover things and get squash in and try to save as much as we could from the impending frost.  It got down to 29 last night.  We will see how things fared when the sun comes out and things warm up today.  Keep your fingers crossed for minimal damage to our tender salad mix, peppers, and the rest!

And here are some pictures of this weeks harvest (Check out the difference in outfits between Wednesday and Tuesday!)

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