Week 11; August 16, 2012

What’s in the box?

Full Share

Melon (watermelon or cantaloupe)

celery

tomatoes (slicers and heirlooms)

sweet red peppers

bell peppers

oregano

red cabbage

onions

carrots

Single Share

celery

red cabbage

onions

oregano

sweet red peppers

tomatoes (heirloom and slicers)

carrots

garlic

Notes on the box:

Looks like that’s going to be it for melons this year.  There’s a handful more out there waiting to get ripe, but not enough for everyone.  They may make it into some members boxes next week, but for most everyone this is the last hurrah.  Sigh.  Melon time is one of our favorite times and it saddens me to see it end.  It was delicious while it lasted!

The celery in your box is worlds apart from your typical grocery store celery.  It is more fibrous and less tender, but it has FLAVOR!  And the flavor is soooo…. CELERY!   Store your celery in a plastic bag in your crisper.  While it’s probably not tender enough for crunching whole stalks dipped in dressing or peanut butter, it’s so fantastic chopped and added to potato, tuna, or egg salad.  It’s also part of the “trinity” of Cajun cooking – celery, bell pepper, and onion sautéed together are a common base for most every Cajun soup or stew like gumbo.  It’s also an excellent addition to stir fry.  The leaves can be used as you would parsley.  It should keep for about 2 weeks.

Some of the carrots have been cut during harvest by our underbar cutter.  It hits a rock, rides up, and cuts the bottom of the carrot off.  It’s unavoidable with the rocks, but the carrots will keep just fine in the plastic bag.

The onions and garlic can be stored in a cool, dry place out of your fridge.  The onions are a storage variety and so will taste stronger than the sweet onions you have been getting in previous boxes.  We think these onions taste so good!

Recipes:

Josh’s best stir fry every time: We’ve been really into eating the most beautiful stir fries of red cabbage, carrots, onions, green, and red peppers.  Here’s how Farmer Josh cooks it up.

Heat some lard and sesame, peanut, or other oil (not toasted sesame oil).  Seer cut up meat in the oil.  Add sliced onions and cook on high until oil heats up again.  Add longer cooking vegetables such as carrots, green beans, celery, and cabbage.  Stir around.  Add your “secret ingredients.”  Josh uses soy sauce or tamari, fish sauce, hoison sauce, sriracha, minced garlic or ginger, rice vinegar (and sometimes a little sugar when he is craving Chinese Takeout but is stuck making his own Takeout on the farm from fresh organic ingredients). Josh puts on a cover at this point and steams till things are about half way cooked.  Then add quick cooking vegetables like sliced bell or red peppers, basil, or greens.  Cook till everything is tender but still crisp.  Serve with rice.  By the way, we just read the directions on the package of rice.  It says to RINSE the rice before cooking it.  We finally tried rinsing it and the rice comes out perfect!  So there ya go.  All these years of not rinsing the rice and wondering why it was mushy.  Now we figured it out, follow the directions!

Too many tomatoes? Homemade Bloody Mary Mix is yuummmmmy even without the booze (but it’s also good with)!

This link has some great info about cabbage to make you feel extra good about eating it.  It’s also a recipe for a mayo-free Red Cabbage and Apple Slaw

I cut the sugar in this Tomato Chutney Recipe in half and it’s really tasty.  If you don’t want to can it, I think it would freeze well, too.

On the farm…

Now that the boxes are packed we will be getting prepared for the pizza party!  We have had many people RSVP and we are really looking forward to a good turnout.  We will be making pizzas all day and will be serving the pizza buffet style so you can try different  pizzas and eat as little or as much as you like.  We don’t have a set price for the pizza and are asking that you contribute what you can and would like to help us cover costs.  Bring a chair or blanket for picnic.  BYOB.  It’s casual!  Sorry, no dogs!

For folks that will be camping…  We will have limited backyard camping, but there’s quite a bit of space to set up a tent other places on the farm as well.  If you would rather camp in the woods, Loon Lake is not far from the farm or Barron County Park in Chetek is near us as well.

If you can’t make it out to this pizza party, we will be having our harvest party in September and maybe another pizza party!

Six piglets were born today while we were packing your CSA boxes. CUTE!

Storage onions being put in the greenhouse to cure.

Lots of nice looking onions!

Otto inspecting the onions.

I guess that onion passed the taste test, too!

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