Archive for July, 2012

Week 8; July 26, 2012

What’s in the box?

full share

sweet corn

new potatoes

cherry tomatoes

heirloom and regular red slicer tomatoes

zucchini and summer squash

cucumbers

sweet onions

watermelon

oregano

single share

sweet corn

sweet onions

melon

cucumber

new potatoes

summer squash/ zucchini

tomatoes (heirloom, slicers, and/or cherries)

oregano

Notes on the box….

The sugars in Sweet Corn begin to turn to starch as soon as the corn is picked.  This means that you will have tastier corn the sooner you eat it.  We prefer to eat sweet corn simply for the first couple of days after picking.  Just bring some water to a boil, husk the corn and remove the silk, then drop the ears into boiling water for a 3 or 4 minutes.  Remove from the water and serve right away with butter and salt.  If you plan on making corn fritters, corn bread, or adding the corn to soup, you can use the corn that you’ve had waiting in the fridge.  Sweet corn stores best in the husk in the crisper of your fridge.

This season has been particularly bad in regards to bugs.  We think it’s likely because of the mild Winter, early Spring, and very hot weather we’ve had.  We did our absolute best to try to keep any sweet corn with bad spots from the corn worms and picnic beatles out of your box.  Some ears may need to have the top of the ear removed.  If you are particularly bug or worm phobic, you may want to have someone who is not husk the corn as there is the possibility that you may encounter a creature.  That’s your warning, though we really hope that you have no bugs in any of your corn!

Store the melon in the fridge.  If you cut it open, put plastic wrap over the unused part or store it in an airtight container.  We have a few kinds of melon that were ready, the red is called sugar baby, the yellow is Sunshine, and the pale peach colored avocado shaped melon is an heirloom called Sweet Siberian.  Last season we were swimming in melons with a bumper crop, but this season we’ve had more of a bummer crop.  We didn’t get the irrigation on the melons soon enough and the plants started to die leaving us with smaller than normal and earlier ripening melons.  After last seasons several weeks of yummy melons, we are disappointed, but glad to have gotten something.  And there will be some more in the weeks to come, just not as big of a yeild as last season.

The sweet onions should be store in the fridge as they are not cured like storage onions.  They are great on burgers and in salads.

If you find yourself with too many tomatoes to eat quickly enough, feel free to store tomatoes that will be stewed or cooked in your fridge since the fridge will affect mostly the texture of the tomato.  You can cut the core from the tomato and place several whole in a freezer bag, seal, and freeze until you want to use them in soups or sauces in the winter.  The skins will peel off easily as you heat them.

Please see last weeks blog for storage tips on everything else…

Recipes…..

Lauren’s Great Pasta Salad (by Lauren and Craig of the Farm Crew)

Cook the pasta (bowties or wheels are nice), drain, and stop cooking by rinsing with cold water.  Finely dice any veggies that you have on hand (zucchini, summer squash, carrots, tomatoes, sweet onion, sweet corn cut from cob, cauliflower…. )  Mix raw diced veggies in with the cooked pasta.  Add a handful of fresh herbs of your choice (thyme leaves, oregano leaves, parsley, mint, or basil are all great).  Make a dressing from olive oil and white wine vinegar and mix everything together.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

This recipe from our lovely member Lydia Rose sounds too economical and wonderful not to share even though we don’t have any of the ingredients in this weeks box, I suspect that many folks will still have some of the veggies in their fridge!  Without further adieu….  Core, Leaf, and Stem Schmoo!  4 to 5 cups stems, leaves, and cores of cauliflower, broccoli, kale, collard greens, swiss chard, & cabbage, or what you have, sliced or diced into 1/2 inch delights.  3-4 cloves garlic,  1/2 cup olive oil, 1/2 – 1 tsp. sea salt.  Put all the delicious scraps in a pot and add water to cover by half.  cook it at just below a simmer until anything you prod with a wooden spoon is smashable.  When everything is soft, smash with your wooden spoon or puree quickly in a blender or food processor.  Add fresh pepper and fresh herbs to taste.  Delicious on toast, with parmesan, on pasta, or as a side dish!  Thanks so much for sharing, Lydia Rose!

Zucchini Corn Frittata 

Zucchini Cakes Thanks for the link, Anne!

Three Cheese Tomato Tart 

Martha Stewart No Bake Summer Lasagna

Martha Stewart Tomato Pansanella with Ricotta

Martha Stewart Baked Eggs in Tomatoes

Martha Stewart Tomato Hand Pies

On the farm…

        We will be having a pizza on the farm dinner on August 18!  Cooking wood-fired pizza in our earth oven!  Pizzas will feature our farmstead cheese and farm veggies and meat.  We will begin serving pizzas at 2 PM and go until sundown.  You are welcome to camp on the farm, if you like.  We will be putting a flier in your CSA box with more information next week.  If you aren’t able to make it to the farm for our first pizza dinner, we will be having more dinners in the future AND we will have a potluck harvest party in September.  That date has yet to be set, but we will let you know soon!

Sweet Siberian, Sugar Baby, and Sunshine Melons

pest damage on corn, thankfully this was not on all of the corn. Hopefully none of this damage made it to you.

Cassandra with melon cheeks!

Farmarazzi catches Derek in the middle of picking tomatoes.

and Craig, too!

sweet corn station

Josh and an assortment of heirloom tomatoes

No more cabbage. Otto ate it all!

Next Week….

tomatoes

sweet corn

green beans

onions

peppers

melons?

potatoes

garlic?

herb bunch

squash/zukes

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Week 7; July 19, 2012

What’s in the box?

Full Share

green beans

purple cabbage

green top carrots

cauliflower

red new potatoes

summer squash/ zucchini

heirloom tomatoes

parsley

cucumbers

single shares

cauliflower

green cabbage

cucumber

summer squash / zucchini

heirloom tomatoes

parsley

green beans

green top carrots

Notes on the box…

Remember to remove the tops from your carrots before you store them.  They will last much longer than if you leave them on.

The green beans are a little less tender than normal because of the extreme heat and lack of rain.  They still taste great when sautéed with butter and garlic!

I know it’s a lot, but there’s some more cabbage.  It’s just so tasty and we haven’t given full shares purple and singles green, so we put it in the box again.  We have been enjoying all types of slaw with just about every meal.  Asian slaw, classic slaw, cabbage salsa, vinegar slaw….  It’s super refreshing in the heat and it holds well in the fridge.

Don’t store your tomatoes in the refrigerator.  Store them on your counter or window sill with the stem end or “shoulders” down.  We try to pack tomatoes of varied ripeness so that you can have some sooner and some later in the week.  Generally you can tell which is the ripest by the depth of color and firmness of the tomato.  The deeper the color and softer the tomato, the riper it is.  These are heirlooms, so some of them may be pretty funky as far as colors and shape go.  Here are some of the names of the tomatoes:

a handful of lucky members will get these GIANT striped german tomatoes.

speckled romans

Nyagous and a mystery tomato

moonglow (they “glow” yellow-orange when very ripe)

chocolate stripe

Recipes…

Zucchini Salad with Lime Juice, Red Chili, and Peanuts sent by our wonderful member Teresa!  She says “You can change up the acid (we used a mixture of lemon juice and vinegar tonight) as well as the herbs.  Tonight’s also had no peanuts or tomatoes and was still awesome.  The fish sauce is what seems to really bring the balance but if you don’t have that maybe a little soy sauce or mirin would work. Perfect way to use the Zukes in the heat.”

Roasted Cabbage Wedges by Martha Stewart

Asian Noodle Salad (use up some more cabbage!)

salad ingredients:

  • 1 package Linguine Noodles, Cooked, Rinsed, And Cooled
  • 1/2 head sliced Cabbage, or more
  • 1/2 head sliced purple cabbage, or more
  • 1/2 pound chopped green beans
  • Chopped Cilantro,  1 Bunch or  to taste
  • 3 whole scallions, sliced or a sweet or purple onion finely chopped
  • 3 whole Cucumbers peeled & sliced
  • 4 carrots cut into match sticks or shredded
  • 1 cup  cashews, lightly toasted
  • optional – diced green, and/or red peppers
  • DRESSING:
  • 1 whole Lime, Juiced
  • 8 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 8 Tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons (up To 3 Tablespoons) Sesame Oil
  • 1/3 cup Brown Sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons Fresh Ginger Chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic, Chopped
  • 2 whole Hot Peppers Or Jalapenos, Chopped
  • Chopped Cilantro

Mix salad ingredients together.  Whisk dressing ingredients together and pour over salad.  Mix with tongs or hands and serve.

Green Bean, Potato, and Dill Salad  (you can substitute parsley for the dill if you don’t have fresh dill)

On the farm…

We were getting  a little worried.  We have been irrigating constantly for the past week, but the leaves of the sweet corn were still curling up and the winter squash was looking pretty bad.  Thank goodness for the half-inch of rain we got in such a timely manner.  Hopefully it slows some of the crops down.  We hope that our other farming friends are getting the moisture they need.  We remember some dry weather we had a few years ago and all the rain dancing we did.  It’s hard waiting on the rain.  It’s hard working outside when it’s super hot from the moment you wake up all through the night.  But, we are doing exactly what we want to be doing!  Even on the hardest days we realize how blessed we are to be here growing food for people who really care about how their food is grown and where it comes from.  You all are enduring the risks of farming along with us and for that we are extremely grateful.  We love hearing about the meals that you make and seeing pictures of kids enjoying some veggies.  We love knowing that we are helping families and friends eat delicious, healthy, clean food! I think the only crops that have really failed because of the heat and dry weather have been a few plantings of lettuce and our dill which is flowering already even though it’s still tiny.  We may have had some blossom drop on peppers and tomatoes, but not enough to wipe out the crops, just lower yields.

We spent the weekend working on the Earth Oven under the instruction of Derek.  He did the vast majority of work on this beast, but we had some really dedicated helpers this weekend.  Thanks to our friends who came and pitched in!  We are waiting for the cob to dry and think we will be cooking pizzas by mid-August!  We will let you know when we set a date for a pizza dinner on the farm featuring Turnip Rock farmstead cheese and vegetables!

Derek and Terese mixing the cob

the oven! built from rocks on our farm and clay beneath our top soil

Craig, Casandra, and Derek adding some weight to the under-cutter bar for digging the carrots the quick way. Letting the tractor do some of the work is so nice on a hot hot morning.

Lauren, Craig, and Derek bunching carrots

Carrots are Otto approved

and Tooya approved!

Buster, another veggie lovin dog, enjoying zucchini and cauliflower!

water water water water water

Rama and Otto pickin green beans

good helper (for a few minutes at a time!)

yay! puddles and mud!

morning glory enjoying the rain

cool spider!

mama and baby spiders in the greenhouse

zuke-canoes with sage quinoa and sausage filling, carrots, cukes, herb cream cheese dip,  carrot/cabbage slaw. Yum!

Next week…

sweet corn!

tomatoes!

cukes

zukes

squash

carrots

new potatoes

celery?

onions?

garlic?

bell peppers?

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Week 6; July 12, 2012

What’s in the box?

full share

green cabbage

broccoli

cucumbers

summer squash

green top carrots

sage

zucchini

cauliflower

single share

red cabbage

cauliflower

broccoli

zucchini

summer squash

cucumbers

sage

purplette onions

Notes on the box….

It’s hot again this week…  Get those veggies in the fridge ASAP!

Broccoli is all ready at once!  We loaded you up, but the next few weeks will have far less broccoli.  If you find yourself with too much, broccoli is very easy to freeze.  Simply chop it up as you would if you were going to cook it, blanche it for a few minutes in salted boiling water, drain well, allow it to cool, and place it in a freezer bag in your freezer.  It’s even better if you have the space to let it freeze on a cookie sheet and then vacuum seal it for storage.  You can freeze your cauliflower the same way.  Broccoli and Cauliflower should both be stored in an open plastic bag in your crisper.  It will hold for a week and a half (less if it spends much time outside of the fridge at your drop site), but it is best used sooner.  Cauliflower is a good example of a vegetable that you may have thought you didn’t like if you have not had it fresh.  It can also easily incorporated into macaroni and cheese for any nay-sayers in your family.  Just chop it small and add it to the boiling noodles a few minutes before you are ready to drain them.  The blanched cauliflower will meld nicely with the noodles and cheese sauce.  Broccoli is good this way, too.  But it’s more easily recognized.

If you buy zukes, summer squash, or cukes in the store, they are often coated in wax to help them last longer on the shelf.  Ours are not waxed and store best in the fridge in a perforated or open plastic bag in the crisper of your fridge.  Best to use them within the week.  Cukes can easily be added to ice water for a nice refreshing drink. They are also good on sandwiches.

The cabbage can be stored in your crisper (or if your crisper is full, it can sit on the bottom shelf of your fridge.  It will last for quite some time (a month +).  We will try to get full shares purple cabbage next week.  It seems that the single shares may not get green cabbage because the heads are just too big.  We will see!  The cabbage for the summer is intended for fresh eating.  So think slaws and salads.  You can certainly cook it though, or use it for sauerkraut or kimchi, but it’s great fresh.  Sometimes we shred it and use raw it in place of rice with curries or other spicy dishes.

Carrots will store best with the tops removed.  It is suggested that you can use carrot tops in place of parsley in recipes, or you can use the tops in vegetable stock.  We will try to get carrots into the single shares next week.

Sage is best stored in a small glass with about an inch of water in the bottom.  You can place a plastic bag over the top of the glass and keep it in your fridge.  Sage pairs well with eggs, pork, chicken, or tempeh.  Sage is a cooling herb.  We add some leaves to our water jug on very hot days.  It’s also great with roasted cauliflower or on a flatbread pizza with zukes, summer squash, and goat cheese.  YUM!

Recipes….

Roasted Cauliflower with Sage and Carrots

Preheat oven to 425.  Chop cauliflower into medium size florets, pick sage leaves from stem, stack one on top of another, and slice them into strips, chop carrots into coins.  Toss veggies and sage with olive oil.  Place in a roasting pan and roast for 20-30 min.  You can remove the pan from the oven 5 min before cooking is done and toss with some fine breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese for the last 5 min of cooking, but this step is optional.  You can also add broccoli and leave out carrots.

Amish Style Summer Squash

I asked our Amish neighbors how they like to prepair summer squash and zucchini.  Turns out they keep it simple and cook it just like my grandma did…  Slice summer squash and zukes into 1/2 inch coins.  Melt a lot of butter in a pan and cook the squash/zukes over medium high heat with a pinch of salt, stirring frequently.  Keep them covered for most of the cooking so that they steam themselves and break down into a nice mush.  Take the cover off and let the juices mostly evaporate.  Pretty tasty!

Roasted zucchini, Black Bean, and Goat Cheese Enchiladas

zucchini Cheddar Bread from Weelicious

Cucumber Basil Gimlet We made this one, but instead of making a basil simple syrup, we threw the basil leaves in the food processor with the cucumbers and used  plain simple syrup.  Also quite tasty without the gin, and with some bubble water.

On the farm….

Just born!  Welcome, Valentine!

She has a white heart shape on her leg, so we named her Valentine. So sweet! Good job, Mama Red!

Working on the delivery van.

Delivery van troubles…. one of the least fun things about being a farmer.

Next week…

broccoli?

cauliflower

cabbage

cukes

zukes

summer squash

new potatoes!

green beans!

parsley

carrots?

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Week 5 Delivery Update….

Our delivery van is having some trouble.  Please lookout for updates and expect changes in delivery times for this week.  Sorry for any inconvenience. 😦   Call us or email if you have any questions.  

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Week 5; July 5, 2012

Full Share

What’s in the box?

broccoli

green cabbage

collard greens

sugar snap peas

basil

a cucumber

summer squash

zucchini

green onions

Single Share

broccoli

a cucumber

red cabbage

collard greens

green onions

sugar snap peas

basil bunch

summer squash

zucchini

Some notes on the box…

      It’s SUPER HOT outside, in case you hadn’t noticed (it’s also super hot inside, but the temperature of our house doesn’t affect your veggies much).  The heat means that you should try to pick up your box of produce to get it all in the fridge as soon as you can.  Everything will keep longer if it stays cool.  A reminder again….  if things are lookin wilty, a nice dunk in a sink full of cold water for a few minutes works miracles to perk things up again.

     The exception to the cold dunk and refrigeration rule in the box this week is for the Basil.  Don’t refrigerate your basil and don’t dunk it in cold water.  It will keep best as a basil bouquet in a glass of water on your counter.

     We were planning on having lettuce for you, but the next 3 plantings either bolted, got burned, or tasted bitter due to the heat.  Kind of a bummer, but Cabbage is also known as “Summer Lettuce” and makes a lovely salad.  The cabbage in the boxes this week are ment for fresh eating.  The best way to treat is to cut it into very thin ribbons and dress it.   Coleslaw is usually thought of as a side, but it tastes great on burgers or tacos when dressed in a complementary way.

    The sugar snap peas were succumbing to the heat.  They are such a fleeting treat.  No more till next year!  Good thing we will have other veggies coming to take their place!

   The cucumber is a teaser.  We didn’t have a whole lot when we harvested (only enough for one in each box this first picking), but don’t worry….   there will be more!

    The full shares will have gotten a variety of zucchini called magna.  It’s the light green short and stout one.  It’s a tricky one it pick at the right time and if yours is large it will be good for zucchini bread or for stuffing.

Recipes…  

Super Simple Mayo-free Coleslaw 

Finely shred 1/2 medium head or full small head of cabbage.  You can also add shredded carrots, thinly sliced radish or turnips. some chopped green onions or garlic scapes, or anything else you think would taste good…  Mix in a separate bowl 1/4 – 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar with 1/2- 1 Tablespoon sweetener (agave, brown sugar, or honey), and a pinch of salt.  You can add caraway seeds or some celery seeds if you like.  Chopped parsley or basil is also nice.  Cilantro added compliments Asian food…  mix your dressing with your veggies (hands work best).  Let it sit for at least 5 min before serving.

Zucchini Lemon Salad

You can use zucchini or summer squash for this recipe.  Use it to top lettuce or you can try finely chopping collards or kale and “massaging” it in half the dressing, then combining it with the zucchini….  Cut zucchini or summer squash into match sticks.  Make the dressing by  zesting 2 lemons, then cut the lemons in half and squeeze the juice into a bowl (mix zest and juice), add either 1 Tbsp olive oil, a spoonful of mayo or yogurt, and a tsp of your prefered sweetener.  If you are going to pair the zukes with collards or kale, pour half of the dressing onto the zucchini and the other haf onto the chopped kale or collards and massage well.  Allow to sit for at least 15 min.  Then put the zukes that have been marinading in the dressing on the collards and serve.  If you don’t like raw collards or kale, the marinated zukes are great with salad greens, lettuce, or fresh spinach.  It’s also good on its own.

Basil and Green Onion Cream Cheese

Let 8 oz. of cream cheese sit out enough to be softened.  Rinse and chop a bunch of basil and a few green onions and if you have any scapes, a scape or two.  Mix herbs, 2 Tbsp. olive oil, a pinch of salt, ground black pepper to taste, and the cream cheese until smooth (you can use your food processor if you like).  Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.  Super good on crackers, as a dip for fresh veggies (like broccoli!) or as a base spread for a cucumber sandwich.

Broccoli with Asian Dressing

Separate the stalk from the florets of a couple of heads of broccoli (or just one if you got a monster head).  Chop the stalk into matchsticks.  Chop the florets into smaller florets.  You can steam broccoli for a few minutes, or you can serve this as a raw salad.  Mix 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar, 2 Tbsp. peanut oil, 2 Tbsp. soy sauce, 1 tsp. grated fresh ginger, some minced garlic or chopped garlic scapes, 1 tsp toasted sesame oil, and schriracha (or chopped fresh hot chili) to taste.  Pour dressing over the broccoli.  Serve warm or chill and serve as a cold salad.

A nice recipe for Green Garlic and zucchini Latkes (if you don’t have green garlic or garlic scapes left, you can use green onions.)

Sesame Sugar Snap Peas

Creamy Coleslaw with Bacon and Blue Cheese

On the Farm….

flying cabbage

All cabbage has sailed through the air to be safely caught by Craig before packing.

In the morning, but sweaty already.

Basil smells good!

Tomato plants are LOADED!

Speckled Roman Tomatoes will be in the boxes before you know it!

tiny beans and blossoms

sweet corn tassles

Sweet corn silk

tomatoes and bell peppers are lookin good!

baby green bell pepper

future water melon

Next round of “Freedom Rangers” ready for order at the end of September. Can you see them panting? We have a fan on them and they are still hot even though they prefer it to be in the 90’s as baby chicks. It’s hot!

New Calf “Lady B” nursing.  She’s a week old!

Pretty cows!

garlic harvested and drying for a later delivery

Sorry for any confusion last week with the web store.  The chicken is all sold out and we will be delivering meat on Friday if you ordered any.  Hope everyone is able to find relief from the heat somehow.  Our amazing crew has been working hard as ever, but we called it a day after packing boxes at 3:30 on Wednesday to go to the air-conditioned movie theatre.  We’ve also been going to the local swimming hole after work.  Mostly we are just sweating it out and looking forward to next week’s milder temperatures.  Thanks folks and be sure to contact us if you have any questions or concerns or if you’d like to share and recipes!

Next week…

broccoli

cabbage

cauliflower

cucumbers

summer squash and zucchini

greens

green onions?

some type of herb

anything else that surprises us by suddenly being ready to harvest!

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