Winter Share, Week 1; October 11, 2012

What’s in the box?

Winter Share Week 1

bagged spinach

green and ripe heirloom tomatoes

yellow onions

garlic

parsley

carnival squash

brussel sprouts

acorn squash

pie pumpkin

collard greens

green cabbage

broccoli

potatoes


Notes on the box….

Spinach, parsley, collards, cabbage, brussel sprouts, and broccoli can all be stored in your fridge.  You’ll want to keep the spinach, parsley, and collards in your crisper.

Store onions, garlic, winter squash, tomatoes, and potatoes outside of your fridge.

If you don’t have room in your fridge, feel free to pop the sprouts off the stalk of the brussel sprouts and put them in a plastic bag before storing them in the fridge.  Their flavor tends to diminish the longer they are off the stalk, so try to cook them soon.  They are one of many crops that taste quite a lot better fresh from the farm than they do from the store.  These sprouts suffered through an extra hot and dry summer and fall, so the flavor isn’t quite as awesome as previous seasons, but still quite good even if there is a little bit more bitterness than they normally have.  The stalk is not edible.  NOTE:  When cooking brussel sprouts, be sure to cut off the tough end where the sprout connects to the stalk.  Then CUT THE SPROUTS IN HALF.  It makes them cook more quickly and taste a lot better than overcooking the whole thing in an attempt to get the entire sprout tender!  Though they are often steamed, they are really great roasted or sautéed.

We prewash the spinach, but to be sure that you don’t get any grit in your salad or whatever you decide to make with it, we suggest washing or rinsing again.

The collards are nice and sweet again after a few good frosts and some cool weather.  We made pretty huge bunches of collards.  After some discussion in the field we decided that for the remainder of the Winter Share boxes, we will give smaller bunches of more varieties of greens so as not to force you to eat one type of green all week long.  Hope you can get through and enjoy these collards, though.  If you have a hard time, you can sneak some leaves into smoothies.  If you have a juicer, you can juice both the stems and leaves.  Or you can stem and cut up the collards and blanche them, and freeze.  They are great to add to soups later.

Most of the broccoli is side shoots.  After the plant puts on its main head and we harvest that, it grows multiple small heads.  We really like cooking with the side shoots because they are so easy  to work with.  The stalk is edible and can be chopped and cooked with the head of the broccoli.

There are three types of Winter Squash this week.  Sweet Dumpling, Acorn, and Pie Pumpkin.  We try to keep squash with any bumps, scrapes, or bruises out of the boxes.  There are a handful of acorn squash with the stems missing.  Any Winter Squash with imperfections should be eaten first as they won’t hold as well as others.  Otherwise, WinterSquash should hold for at least a couple of months and they make nice Autumn decoration as you wait to eat them. Wash off the squash before you cook them!

The skin on the Sweet Dumpling is edible, making it a great squash for cutting in half, seeding, slicing into crescent moons or rings, tossing with some olive oil and spices of your choice, and roasting in the oven until fork tender and slighty carmelized on the edges.

Sweet Dumpling

Some people eat the skin of the acorn squash and some do not.  It depends on how long you roast it and your preference for tough or fiberous textures.  These are a less sweet squash that taste great cut in half, seeded, and roasted with butter and maple syrup or honey until nice and soft. They are also wonderful stuffed with your favorite savory stuffing.

Acorn Squash

Pie Pumpkins are good for roasting and using in pumpkin muffins, bread, pie, and smoothies.  They are also good if you can seed the pumpkin, peel the skin (you need a good vegetable peeler to do this), and cube and add to curries or use in soups.  They are also good for Halloween decorations.

pie pumpkin

The tomatoes were picked from the greenhouses as we are cleaning them out to get them ready for next season.  Green tomatoes can be ripened by putting them in a paper bag with an apple on your counter.  The texture and flavor of these tomatoes aren’t the best for fresh eating, but are great for sauces and stews.

Recipes…..

sautéed Brussel Sprouts with Bacon and Onions from Alice Waters The Art of Simple Food

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Braised Collard Greens from Mad Hungry by Lucinda Scala Quinn

1 lb. collard greens, trimmed and washed, water still clinging to the leaves

1 Tbsp vegetable oil

1 medium onion, chopped

3 slices bacon, cut in half lengthwise and sliced crosswise in ½-inch pieces

Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

1 Tbsp red wine vinegar

Coarse salt

1. Remove the tough stems from the collard leaves.  Finely slice the stems crosswise. Stack a few leaves on top of each other and cut into 1 ½- to 2-inch pieces. Repeat with all leaves.  You’ll have 8 packed cups.

2. Heat a 20-inch sauté pan over high heat.  Swirl in the oil and add the onion, bacon, and red pepper flakes.  Fry until the onion is soft and the bacon is beginning to render its fat and crisp up, about 13 minutes.

3. Add the greens, 2 cups at a time.  Stir into the onion mixture as you add.  They will collapse and shrink in the heat.

4.  When all the greens are in the pan and the heat has returned to sizzling high, pour in the vinegar.  Stir to evaporate.  Cover and let the greens cook over low heat until just tender, 10 to 15 minutes.  Add a bit of water as needed to keep the greens from burning.  Add salt to taste and serve.

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I made this recipe for Creamed Spinach from the book Mad Hungry, but I doubled the sauce, added a few cloves of minced garlic, and mixed it and the spinach in with some cooked pasta and topped with grated Romano.  It made a great and quick lunch.  Josh has made Creamed Collards, by substituting sautéed collard greens and garlic for the spinach and adds 1/4 cup of cream to the sauce.  It’s really rich and delicious!

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Please see last weeks blog post for many more recipes using ingredients from the box!

On the farm….

It’s feeling very much like Winter is knocking on the farm.  We are cooking a lot in the oven and making soup on the stove.  We are drinking tea on our breaks.  We are getting sore, pink fingers on cold mornings bunching greens in wet weather.  Those cold damp days make us want to get our work done quickly so that we can be inside, warm, and out of the weather.  But we are LOVING the sunny crisp clear days that make us so happy to be working outside!

We have picked rock out of the garlic patch for next season. This would be the third picking this summer. Still hauling multiple full trailer loads. But we push on. We have saved garlic seed for 8 eight years running now. You may have seen some small heads of garlic this season as we are holding back the largest for seed stock, and our hope will be to have enough large stock to give to you and have enough for seed. That day is getting near.

The weather continues to be dry, we are still irrigating the carrots, and broccoli that we hope will come on soon. The growing days are numbered. long range forecast predic cold and dry conditions this winter, so we will be sure to mulch the garlic to prevent heaving and frost damage.

We unfortunately don’t have the wide variety that we had last season as the dry hot weather took out many of the plantings we had hoped to have for this time of season. But the boxes are still full.

Survey results will be in soon

have a great week

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week 18; October 4, 2012 Last box of the Summer Season

FULL SHARE

eggs! (not pictured)

bagged spinach

red onions

mini-Long Island Cheese Pumpkin (edible)

Acorn Squash

Leeks

green-top beets

green and ripe heirloom tomatoes

bagged brussel sprouts

cabbage

broccoli

SINGLE SHARE

eggs

leeks

acorn squash

red cabbage

lacinato kale

bagged spinach

green tomatoes

bagged brussel sprouts

red onion

Notes on the box…

The eggs are from our wonderful flock of laying hens who are out running around in the pasture as you read this.  They eat bugs, grass, and an Organic grain ration and the eggs are very different than even the Organic eggs in the grocery store.  You will certainly notice the difference in flavor.  We hope you enjoy them!

We went ahead and pulled the brussel sprouts off the stalks.  I know it’s a fun task, and it’s easier for us to leave them on the stalk (and they stay tastier longer on the stalk) but we wouldn’t have been able to fit everything in the box if we had left them on, so we bagged them up.  Use them sooner rather than later for the best flavor!

As explained in previous blog posts, we had poor germination on our carrots, beets, and lettuce earlier in the season.  We finally got a planting to germinate, but nothing sized up enough on time to make it into the boxes.  Except these baby beets of which we only had enough for bunches for the full shares.  Sorry about that, Single Share beet lovers!  The beets and their greens are edible, but both will store longer if you remove the tops from the beets.  I suggest cutting below the rubberband and putting the beet roots in a bag.  The tops will store better in plastic in your crsiper as well because they lose moisture very quickly.  The baby beets don’t need to be peeled and are fantastic roasted with a little oil until they are tender.  Beet tops are great sauted to wilted with a little oil and garlic and then finished with a squeeze of lemon juice.  You can also add them to the bagged spinach (if you are cooking the spinach) or use it in any recipe that calls for chard.

Green tomatoes for a nice green tomato recipe (see below) OR you can put them in a paper bag with an apple and they will ripen.  They won’t have that great Summer time flavor.  Most all tomatoes that you buy in the store are picked green and ripened with ethylene.  The trick with the bag works because apples naturally release ethylene.

Store the Winter Squash, tomatoes, garlic, and onions outside of the fridge and everything else in the fridge.

Recipes…..

Flash Pickled Green Tomatoes from Food and Wine.  Make these and put them on a BLT Or a TLT (with tempeh instead of bacon).  If you have no L, you can substitute Spinach!

Making the Most of Green Tomaotes provides several ideas.

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Warm Cabbage, Onion, and Apple Slaw from Alic Waters’ Chez Panisse Vegetables.  Serves 8-10

1 medium yellow or red onion

1 medium red or green cabbage

2 large crisp, sweet apples

oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper

Peel and slice the onions very thin. Trim the cabbage, core it, cut it in half, and slice it into a fine chiffonade, as for coleslaw.  Peel, core and slice the apples very thin.  In a large saute pan, heat the iol and begin to saute the onions.  When they are translucent and just beginning to brown, add the apples.  Saute about 1 min until everything is sizzling.  Add the cabbage, the salt and pepper, and a dash of vinegar, and a little water.  Stir on a hot flame just long enough to barely cook the cabbage.  It should retain a little crunch and sweetness of fresh cabbage.  Serve with pork, roast chicken, or duck; a savory grain and legume pilaf or roast potatoes; or by itself, cold.

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Spinach Salad with Roasted Baby Beets

Wash the beets and toss them with a little oil.  You can cut them into halves or quarters or bite size pieces depending on what you like.  Cook them in a 375 degree oven until they are fork tender.  Time will vary depending on if you cut them up or not.  Toast some nuts, wash your spinach and make a dressing (honey mustard is nice) Toss the spinach with the dressing, top with toasted nuts, cooled roasted beets, maybe some finely diced red onion, and some goat cheese or grated cheese of your choice.

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From our Liberty Village Host, Natalie….  a suggestion for a quick and easy go-to meal!  Thanks, Natalie!

“i made this last week, i thought of you all…as i used ONLY YOUR food plus pasta to create one of my FAVORITE/EASY go-to meals:

in a skillet/fry pan, take a little evoo and one very large or 2 small onion and saute…when slightly softened (not browned) add 2-3 tomatoes, diced (all but core in, last time i used a giant heirloom…delicious), salt, pepper and red chili flake to preference for heat.

while doing this, boil nicely salted water w/ whole grain penne (or any short pasta of your liking), reserving 1/2 c liquid,
when noodles are done, so is your sauce, add some of Rama’s grated Romano (generously with a little more on top)…

toss, add reserved water if you want it ‘more saucy’…and enjoy.  if you want it heartier or someone in your family (we will call him Jason) needs MEAT, we add a cooked chicken breast diced…”

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Derek made this for us for lunch after his partner Terese made it for him for supper.  It’s yummy!  Coconut Brussel Sprouts with Dal

On the Farm…..

This is officially the last box of the 2012 Summer Season.  We will be sending an email with a link to the 2012 survey.  Please take a few minutes to fill it out.  We read and value every response.  The surveys help us a lot in our planning for next season.

We also invite you all to go ahead and sign up for the 2013 season.  If you sign up now, you will be guaranteed the 2012 price and you will be doing us a favor!  We need funds for the seed order which we place in December and if everyone waits until April of next year, we have to dip into savings or live pretty lean during the Winter to get the order paid for…  Or we wait until the CSA money starts coming in and some of our best varieities of seeds might be sold out!

We want to take a moment to thank our crew.  Craig, Lauren, Derek, and Cassandra have been so much fun to have around and amazingly dedicated workers.  It’s a lot to ask for people that are working for not much pay to care about the farm as much as we do.  Enough to show up each day with the sun and to work until the jobs are done.  They all gave so much and all worked with interest and passion and great attitudes.  We hope that they learned and discovered what they set out to by working on our farm.  Any of our members who had the good fortune of meeting them know how kind they are and how much they love farming and food!  These guys are like family to us and we look forward to seeing where they go and what they decide to do.  One thing is for sure, they ALL have what it takes to be farmers and they will be successful in any endeavor they choose.  Thank you so much crew of 2012!

We also want to give a great thanks to all of you who signed up and were a part of our farm. We would not be here without you. It may seem somewhat far removed from your life in the city, but we really want you to know what impact your food choices have. If we were not with us, these 40 acres that we call home would most likely be a Genetically Modified corn field or a worn out hayfield rented to a retiring dairyman who can’t afford to give anything back to the soil. You are  helping to challenge what many people see as farming. I was riding in a tow truck the other day and the driver asked what I do. I kept it simple and said “I’m farming full time”, immediately he started asking about corn prices. I didn’t really have the time to get into the details, but that is exactly the opposite of what we are doing here. When you buy food from us, you are supporting a business that sells real food to its neighbors… not the highest bidder on the global stock exchange. Half of our income doesn’t go to oil and chemical companies or vertically integrated agribusiness. It goes to the local hardware stores, the bakery in town, Organic seed companies, our employees who are most likely to carry on farming in some capacity, who are learning what it takes to grow food and applying it to thier lives. YOU helped to make it all happen! We have offered the alternative to the multinational corporations. You have chosen not to get some or all of your food from those places, but from us. This has a ripple effect that can turn the tide, that can make our region food secure and make our community more diverse and economically and environmentally sustainable. This is a blueprint for the future. You have taken part in what will be looked at as a great experiment that changed the way we got food.  Directly from the farm.

You have our deepest gratitude.  We look forward to feeding you and your families for many years to come.

2012 farm crew

brussel sprouts

the stalks are cut with a sawz-all or heavy duty loppers

then they are put into harvest bins and driven to the packing shed

unless all the bins fall off the wagon first…

taking the sprouts off the stalk is not the most entertaining job, until…

Farmer Josh feels inspired to sing out!

he’s inspired by his love for the Sprout!

back to work, slightly more entertained

First Winter box will be delivered next Thusday to those members who signed up for a Winter Share.  See ya then!

Comments (4)

Week 17; September 27, 2012

What’s in the box?

FULL SHARE

Butternut Squash

Liberty Apples

Brussel Sprouts on the Stalk

Red and Green Peppers

Heirloom Tomatoes

Curly Kale

Leeks

Garlic

Onions

Bagged Spinach

Broccoli

Potatoes

SINGLE SHARE

Butternut Squash

Bagged Spinach

Brussel Sprouts on the Stalk

Curly Kale

Garlic

Onions

Heirloom Tomatoes

Leeks

Liberty Apples

Potatoes

Notes on the box…

The Brussel Sprouts are still on the stalk.  They store better this way and it’s a nice activity to pull the sprouts off of the stalk before you cook them.  If you don’t have room in the fridge for the stalks, you can go ahead and pop the sprouts off and keep them in a plastic bag in the fridge.  They normally would have had more cold weather before we harvest them.  The hot weather in September hasn’t helped the flavor become the sweet sprouts that taste much better than the sprouts found in  the store, but they are still pretty good, just not as tasty as they are with a full month of cool temps.  There will be another stalk of sprouts in the box next week.  Please see the recipe below for our favorite way to cook Brussel Sprouts.

Winter Squash for this week is Butternut Squash.  It’s a favorite for many people with a nice sweet flavor.  It’s easy to peel (you can use a vegetable peeler).  It’s great to cut into cubes and put in a curry or stir fry, or you can boil it and make it into a squash soup or sauce (see recipe below) or you can steam it.  You can also roast it.  It will keep for a few months at room temperature.

Leeks have a flavor that is similar to onions.  The part of the leek that is most commonly eaten is the stalk from the white base up to just below where the dark green leaves start.  The leaves and upper stalk can be added to other commonly discarded vegetables trimmings to make vegetable stock.

We are really missing the carrots, beets, and salad mix that we were planning on having in the boxes at this point in the season.  To make it up to you, we went to pick Apples from White Pine Orchard in River Falls Wisconsin.  It’s a lovely little organically managed orchard with lots of different varieties of apples including some older varieties including the ones we put in the box, Liberty.  Liberty apples are crisp and tart and recommended for baking or for sauce, but we really love them for fresh eating.  They store well and Keith (the orchardist) says he finds that the flavor improves with storage.  Keith told us that this season was not the best for apples.  He lost a lot of blossoms because of the early, warm spring and then the strong frost in April caused the trees to drop those blossoms which means less apples.  He also said that the crops are about three weeks ahead of normal and harvest is almost over.  He said he had an okay amount of rain, but that he did get some hail damage, pest damage, and sunscald on the apples.  We thought that you all would enjoy these apples from his orchard.  We have about 30 pear trees planted here on the farm, but we have not had any fruit on them yet.  We hope that in a few seasons we will be able to put our own pears in the CSA boxes.

Recipes…

At the harvest party we served pizzas with winter squash sauce.  We topped the pizzas with onions, sausage, peppers, and cheese.  We also make the same pizza topped with kale and cranberries and that was delicious, too.  We had several requests for our pizza crust recipe and the squash sauce, so here ya go…

Squash Sauce Pizza with Kale and Cranberries!

Pizza Crust (for two medium pizzas)

Mix together 3 cups of flour (either all-purpose, or 1 cup of wheat and 2 cups of bread flour), 2 tsp. salt, 1 Tbsp. or 1 envelope of yeast, 1 tsp. sugar.  After the dry ingredients are mixes, add 1 1/4 cups of hot water (from the tap).  Mix the water into the dry ingredients.  If it seems too dry and won’t come together, add a little more water.  Put a little flour on the counter and knead the dough until it comes together.  Knead it a little more (maybe 30 times) then put it in a bowl covered with a wet dish towel and leave it in a warm place to rise for at least 2 hours.  When you are ready to make your pizza, take the dough out of the bowl, knead it a few times on a lightly floured surface, and split it in half.  Roll out the dough with a rolling-pin an enough flour that nothing sticks to the counter or the rolling-pin.  You can also try tossing the dough if you are feeling brave.  When you have a pretty thin mostly circular shape, put it on your pizza pan and “decorate” your pizza with sauce and toppings of your choice.  Bake at 425 for 20 minutes or until the toppings and the edges of the crust are lightly browned.  We really like to make a winter squash sauce.

Winter Squash Pizza Sauce

Roast a pumpkin, acorn squash, or butternut squash (you could steam the butternut squash if you prefer).  When flesh of squash is very tender, allow it to cool a little, the scoop it out and into your food processor.  Add a couple of glugs of olive oil, a few peeled and roughly chopped cloves of garlic, and a pinch of salt.  Run the food processor until everything is smooth.  You can add a little bit of water if it seems too thick, but you want the consistency to be such that a spoonful will drop into a solid dolip, not be soupy.  Spread the sauce on your unbaked crust.  Top with sliced onions, sliced red peppers, cooked sausage (optional), chopped and steamed kale (optional), and shredded cheese (we like greuyere and romano or parmesan)  and bake at 425 for 20-30 min or till crust and cheese are lightly browned.

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Those of you at the Harvest Party will also remember Rob and Susan’s yummy dish…

French Lentils with Sausage & Kale Makes: 6+ servings

1 Tb Olive Oil
1 pound pork sausage, cut into 2” pieces
4 oz bacon or side pork, diced
1 onion, chopped
4 carrots, chopped

1 celery stalk, with leaves, chopped
4 large garlic cloves, minced
1 pound dry lentils, preferably French green lentils
Handful of chopped thyme, oregano & basil leaves
1 bunch kale or chard, stemmed, washed & blanched
Pour boiling water over the lentils to cover & let sit, they will double in volume.
Fry the diced bacon or side pork until nearly crisp, then add sausage. Cook until sausage
is browned.Transfer to a plate & drain off excess fat (leave 2-3 Tb in the pan).
Sauté all the vegetables until tender, then add the chopped herbs & cook another 2
minutes or so. Drain lentils and rinse.
Add 2 quarts of water and lentils to the pot & bring to a boil. Simmer 10 minutes.
Add kale and simmer another 10 mins until the kale is tender & lentils are cooked.

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We had a nice lunch today of Onions, Apples, and Sausage over Brown Rice (wild rice would have been great), roasted Brussel Sprouts, and Spinach Salad with Toasted Pecans and Honey Mustard Dressing.   Here’s how we cooked it up…

Onions, Apples, and Sausage

Slice a couple of onions (red or yellow).  Core and slice a few apples (leave the skin on).  Place a skillet over medium-high heat with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a half inch of water. Prick the sausages (for however many people you are feeding) and place them into the pan. Cover and bring the liquids to a bubble then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer the sausages in the water until cooked through, 8-9 minutes. Remove the lid, let the water cook away and crisp and caramelize the skins of the sausages, 4-5 minutes more.  Take the sausages out of the pan and put the sliced onions and apples in the pan.  Season with salt and pepper and cook them till tender (about 5 min) then add a Tbsp. of brown sugar (optional), a cup of liquid (beer, apple cider, broth, or water), and some mustard.  Stir and bring to a simmer.  Add the sausage back in and cook till the liquids have thickened up.  Serve with rice or bread.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Spinach and Toasted Pecan Salad with Honey Mustard Dressing

Roughly cut up the spinach.  Toast pecan pieces (or other nuts or sunflower seeds).  Toss the spinach with the dressing and sprinkle the nuts on just before serving.

  • 1/3 cup dijon or stone ground mustard
  • 3 Tbsp honey
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1-2 tsp lemon juice
  • pinch of salt
  • fresh ground pepper

Put it all in a mason jar, stir lightly with a fork, and then put the lid on and shake until smooth.

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Rob and Susan said that they didn’t really know what to do with the pie pumpkins until they discovered this recipe.  They said they use it with other squash (like acorn) as well.

Pumpkin Stuffed with Everything Good

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for your greens…Winter Pasta from 101 cookbooks

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yum yum yum yum yum Braised Leeks!

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Warm Butternut and Chickpea Salad from Smitten Kitchen

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On the Farm…

Folks, this is the second to last box of the season!  If you’d like to keep the veggies coming for another 6 weeks, we still have some Winter Shares left.  Update your account to add a Winter Share.  The program won’t let you add the Winter Share on Thursday, so you can come back tomorrow to sign up.  Or you can email us at turniprock@gmail.com and we can update it for you.

We would also like to invite our members to sign up for  the 2013 season!  Already?  YES!  You can choose to pay in 5 installments and make your first payment now.  Your next payment won’t be due until February 1, 2013.  Signing up now will help us with getting some money together for the seed order, which we make in December.  It’s a big expense for us and having folks put in their order now ensures that we will be able to pay for the varieties that we want and not have to wait to complete our order until people sign up in April or May.  If you sign up before January 1, 2013 you will pay the 2012 price.  You can also make sure that you will get the egg share option!  We will be going over the books from the season to see how the numbers shook out, but we anticipate that we will need to increase the cost of a share in 2013 to keep up with rising seed, labor, and other costs.   You can sign up for the 2013 season today!

Next week we will post our member survey so that we can gather your input to help us plan the 2013 season.

Kale is Otto approved!

This way to the apples!

Keith showing us the difference between surface and interior damage to the apples.

Lauren loves apples!

Cassandra loves apples!

Derek loves apples!

Otto really wants to get up on the ladder to help.

Craig picking on the ladder.

Josh and Rama working together

Craig and Lauren working together

Apples are Otto approved!

Comments (1)

Week 16; September 20, 2012

What’s in the box?

FULL SHARE

bagged spinach

heirloom tomatoes

red and green bell peppers

red or orange sweet peppers

garlic

sweet potatoes

red onions

broccoli

sage

rainbow chard

mini Long Island Cheese Pumpkin

Black Futsu Winter Squash

SINGLE SHARE

bagged spinach

green and red bell peppers

red sweet peppers

garlic

onions

heirloom tomatoes

mini Long Island Cheese Pumpkin

BlackFutsu Winter Squash

Rainbow Chard

Sage

Broccoli (we ran out during packing, so a couple of drop sites got no broccoli, but more tomatoes and winter squash)

Notes on the box…

Winter Squash, onions, garlic, and sweet potatoes should be stored at room temperature and will keep for a minimum of 1 month, but likely longer.  Also keep your tomatoes out of the fridge.  The chard and broccoli will keep longer in a plastic bag (or wrapped in a damp towel in your fridge if you are avoiding plastic)  and should last for about a week.  Greens tend to get a little limp as they wait in the fridge, but will perk back up if you soak them in a sink with cold water for a few minutes.

The pumpkins and black futsu squash are both heirloom varieties.  The Long Island Cheese Pumpkin can be roasted and used in pies, or it can be seeded, peeled, and cubed to be used like butternut squash.  It is really pretty, so you can keep it around to look at for a while if you can resist eating it right away.  The Black Futsu (the bumpy one) is one that we grew a trial of last season.  We really liked it, so we grew enough for all members to get some this season.  Wash the outside of it well, then cut it in half and seed it, then cut along the ribs so that you have several half moons of squash.  Toss with olive oil and salt (you can add spices of your choice such as Indian spices or Chili, but the taste of the squash is amazing even without seasoning) and roast in a 400 degree oven for about a half hour, stirring half way during cooking.  You can eat the skin of this squash and the Long Island Cheese Pumpkin when they are roasted this way.  It has a nice nutty and sweet flavor.  You can let it cool and serve it on top of a raw spinach, diced red pepper,and onion salad with vinaigrette.

Black Futsu cut along ridges for roasting.           

Long Island Cheese Pumpkin and Black Futsu after roasting.

The spinach is tender and sweet and we suggest you eat it as you would salad greens.

The Rainbow Chard is looking particularly lovely!  All the greens are really bouncing back since the weather is cooled down and we’ve gotten some rain.  Yay!  Remember that the beautiful stems are edible.  I add them to any recipe for chard by chopping them and adding them in the beginning of the recipe (like at the same time as the onions) so that they get a chance to cook a bit.  They take longer to cook and the leaves cook down in a flash, so just plan the cook time so that the stems will get tender and the leaves won’t be over-done.

Last season we grew sweet potatoes, it was a decent yield, we had good feedback on them, and so this season we said, hey lets grow triple the amount, we liked growing them, yields were decent and people like em. Well… we tripled them and got enough for one delivery to the full shares. Half of them died in a cold snap in the spring, and then being as dry as it was out here we didn’t see much size development.  Win some, lose some. We will keep at it and grow them again next season!

We had our first frost Mon. (light, 31 degrees) but that brings the peppers to an end.  The greens will sweeten up. Broccoli the same, but it will be slower to develop. Heirloom tomatoes are in the greenhouse, so they will keep puttering along even in the cold, but you can tell they are wanting to quit and the texture will be a little mealy, as if they had been stored in a refrigerator.

With just two weeks left we will be diving into the leeks, brussel sprouts, more spinach, and hopefully carrots. Because of our multiple attempts at planting because of poor germination in the heat, they got in the ground quite late and are barely half the size of a finger so it will be a race to the finish. They are covered with row cover, hopefully that will help them along!

Recipes…

 Spinach Salad.  This sounds like a nice hearty onion,bacon and egg addition to your spinach. with a nice bacon dressing recipe.

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Mushroom and Spinach (or Chard) Stuffed Peppers  from Farmer John’s Cookbook (I usually adapt the recipes for the blog to reflect what is in the CSA box, but this is just as printed in the cookbook.  Feel free to improvise, add, and substitute as you wish!  I’m sure you are getting to be great at “cooking off the cuff” at this point in the season!)

 4 Quarts Water                                                4 Bell Peppers, any color, tops sliced off,

1 TBSP salt, plus more to taste                             seeds removed (reserve and chop the

¼ cup butter, divided                                            flesh around the stems)

1 onion, minced, (about 1 cup), divided       1 ½ cups uncooked rice

½ lb. mushrooms, chopped                               1 cup finely diced celery

¼ cup finely diced carrots                                 ¼ cup fresh or frozen corn

1 handful spinach or chard, chopped          1 tsp fresh minced ginger (optional)

2 cloves garlic, minced                                      dash cayenne pepper

1 Tomato, peeled, seeded, diced                ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided

fresh ground black pepper                                    plus more to taste

Preheat oven to 350.  Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil in a large soup pot; add the peppers and 1 TBSP of salt.  Cook the peppers until almost soft, 3-4 minutes.  Remove the peppers from the water and set in a colander to drain (reserve the cooking water in the pot).  Transfer the peppers to a rack, cut sides up and let cool.

Heat 2 TBSP of butter in a medium skillet over medium heat.  Add half the onions, sauté until translucent and soft, about 5 minutes.  Add the rice and continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the rice begins to turn golden, about 10 minutes.  Add 3 cups of the peppers cooking water and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook until the liquid is completely absorbed, 12 to 15 minutes.

Melt the remaining butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the chopped pepper tops, the remaining onions, mushrooms, celery, corn, spinach or chard, ginger if using, garlic, and cayenne; sauté until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes.  Add salt to taste.

Combine the rice and sautéed vegetables in a large bowl, stir in the tomato and half the Parmesan cheese.  Season with pepper to taste.  Fill each pepper case with the filling and arrange them in a 9-inch square baking dish.  Garnish with the remaining cheese; add more if desired.  Spread any extra filling around the peppers.  Bake until heated through, about 20 minutes.

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Sweet Potatoes mash with pecans

  • 2 lbs of peeled sweet potatoes;
  • ½ cup soft butter or olive oil
  • 2 green onions, chopped;
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon;
  • ¼ cup toasted pecans;
  1. In a large pot, bring water to a boil and cook potatoes until soft enough to mash.
  2. Strain the potatoes and return them to pot. Add the butter and mash until all butter is melted and potatoes are smooth.
  3. Add onions and cinnamon and mix thoroughly to ensure the cinnamon is dispersed evenly.
  4. In a small skillet over medium heat, toast pecans. Once finished, add to the potatoes.

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Sweet Potato, Broccoli, and Tomato Stew from Farmer John’s CookBook

2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1- 28 oz. jar stewed tomatoes (or 3 to 4 cups cut up fresh ones)
2 cups cooked or canned garbanzo beans, drained
1 ½ cups chicken or vegetable stock or water
3 medium sweet potatoes (about 1 pound, cubed)
1 medium head broccoli, cut into large chunks (about 2 cups)
Freshly ground pepper
Salt

Heat the oil in a soup pot over medium heat. Add the onion; cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, garbanzo beans, stock, and sweet potatoes. Simmer, partially covered, for 15 minutes. Add the broccoli, cover, and simmer until the sweet potatoes and broccoli are tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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Sauteed Swiss Chard Stem with Cream and Pasta  

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Chard and Sweet Potato Gratin 

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Swiss Chard soup . It’s an italian soup that calls for anchovy filet and rosemary.. but maybe chicken stock and some sage would be a good sub.

On the Farm…..

The harvest party was a great time!  It’s always a real pleasure to meet our members and see people that we might only see once per year at the party.  It’s amazing to see kids that have been members for several years and how much they grow from year to year.  We love sharing food with our members and we love it when our farm crew tries to embarrass us by eating Doritoes at the harvest party!  Thanks so much for coming out!  Hope to see you all again next season or before then!

So about those Doritoes…. We are Organic farmers, but we aren’t purists. We have indulged in fun things like “junk food Friday” and “two-for-one burgers at the local bar on Mondays” over the seasons.  We daily try to reach “peak-caffine” with our coffee intake and have been urged by the farm crew to “keep the sweets train rolling!”  But we also eat a ton of vegetables!  It’s all about balance, right?  So you guys will be happy to know that in celebration of the cold wet weather, we kept our Turnip Rock tradition.  It goes like this…  It’s a cold, wet, windy, miserable day.  Everyone suits up and goes to work in the miserable weather with sniffling noses and VERY cold fingers.  Everyone is happy when the 10 hour day is over.  The next morning, the same thing happens. But at lunch we get to make a special announcement…  “Mandatory field trip to Action City”  Everyone finishes lunch, gets changed, and piles into the car for a trip to Eau Claire where we play video games, drive go-carts, and play Lazer-Tag.  Our crew works so hard in every type of weather with great positive attitudes.  It’s really nice to be relaxed, care-free (and warm and dry) for an afternoon!

Lauren, our (guitar) hero!

Josh and Craig shooting alien robots.

Craig is a proto-human and can shoot alien robots with two hands.

Derek, usually seen racing the farm Gator.

Otto experiences sensory overload.

***Not Pictured – Cassandra getting down on the Dance Dance Revolution and Rama alternating Street Fighter, Motorcycle Racing, and toddler chasing.

Back to work!

A whole lotta love, your momma will be proud of this one!

Derek washing chard

spinach

hoophouse tomatoes still kickin after the frost

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Week 15; September 13, 2012

What’s in the box?

Full Share

Broccoli!

oregano

lacinato (dinosaur) kale

yellow onions

acorn squash

heirloom tomato

garlic

red bell and red sweet peppers

(not pictured) eggplant OR green beans

Single Share

same as above, but lesser amounts and no eggplant or green beans

Notes on the box…

There’s a whole heck of a lot of broccoli in this weeks box.  This box is a good example of what I was referring to when talking about how everything came ready at once with the warm weather.  Three different plantings of broccoli are ready to harvest all at once.  There were several hundred pounds that we couldn’t fit into the CSA boxes.  It will be going to the foodshelf.  It’s kind of a bummer to have a week that is so broccoli heavy.  We are missing the beets, carrots, salad mix, and spinach that we seeded in July that didn’t germinate because of the excessive heat.  We are happy that at least the boxes are full, but the variety of produce isn’t what we would prefer.  Anyway, hope you enjoy all this broccoli and the red peppers!

The best way to store the broccoli is in a plastic bag in the crisper.  You can eat the stalk!  Simply peel the outer layer of skin and chop the stalk and cook it with the rest of the broccoli.  If it’s more broccoli than you can eat in a week, chop it, steam or blanche it, allow it to cool, and then put in freezer bags in your freezer.  Red peppers can be seeded, diced, and frozen for use in winter soups and stir fry!  Or you can roast them and then freeze them.  Either way… don’t compost it, preserve it!  It only takes a few minutes!

Store your Acorn Squash on the counter or anyplace out of your fridge.  It will last for several months.  Our favorite way to cook the squash is to cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, and place face down in a baking pan with a little water and oil in the bottom of the pan.  Roast in a 400 degree oven until you can poke a fork into the squash through the skin.  At this point, you can flip it over and put some butter and brown sugar into the squash and broil until the sugar gets dark and bubbly.  Or you can just add butter and maple syrup or honey and serve right away.  I love it with some fresh thyme or oregano, butter, and honey.

If you got eggplant in your box, you should try to use it right away unless you have someplace to store it at around 50 degrees.  The fridge is too cold and the counter is too warm.  It also become bitter with age, so the best thing to do it cook it up right away! It was just harvested, so you don’t have to worry about salting it to expel any bitterness.  However, I have soaked eggplant slices in milk for a few hours before cooking and the texture becomes very silky, almost like custard.  If you aren’t a fan of the firm texture, a nice milk bath really does wonders!

Heirloom tomatoes are really winding down!  The field tomatoes, as explained in a previous blog post, are finished producing.  Such a bummer.  Too many degree days (a measurement of heat units that fruits and vegetables need to ripen) too soon!  We usually have tomatoes up until frost, but not this year.  The last few seasons we’ve had a succession of tomatoes with no ripe fruit at the frost.  That was a big waste of time and money, so this season we cut out that succession.  Now we are kicking ourselves for it!  All we can do now is hope that the heavy quantity of tomatoes in the previous boxes would have satisfied your tomato cravings for the season, and add that succession of tomatoes back to the planting schedule in case we have more seasons like this one.

Recipes

Roasting weather is back!  Now, have you tried roasted broccoli yet??  It’s so very good.  If you think you don’t like broccoli, try this!

Steamed Broccoli with Miso PeanutButter Sauce

Some really great vegetarian and vegan recipes at the post-punk kitchen!  Including this recipe for Seitan with Broccoli and Pantry BBQ Sauce.

Broccoli Beef Stir Fry that you could easily substitute chicken, seitan, or tempeh for the beef.

I’d add a nice handful of fresh oregano leaves to this Kale and Roasted Red Pepper Frittata recipe.

This is where I saw the trick about soaking the eggplant in milk.  This recipe for Eggplant, Thyme, and Honey was a hit with the crew!

Broccoli and Red Pepper Melts from Martha Stewart.  Recipe calls for portabella mushrooms, but it’s tasty even if you have no mushrooms.

Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Pesto

  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 c. walnuts
  • 8 roasted red bell peppers
  • fresh herbs (oregano, basil, parsley, or ???) optional
  • ½ c. olive oil
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
Instructions
Pulse the garlic in a food processor until finely chopped. Add the walnuts and pulse a few more times to break up any large pieces.  Add the roasted red peppers and herbs and process, streaming in the oil as you go, until all the ingredients are well combined and as coarse or as smooth as you want them. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve immediately with toasts, crudities, or spread on sandwiches or toss with pasta. Store in a covered airtight container in the fridge, or freeze. NOTE: I think that if you didn’t want to go through the trouble of roasting and peeling the red peppers, you could probably slice them, roast them with some olive oil till tender, slightly carmelized, and fragrant and then put them right into the food processor.  You may have little flecks of the skin, but I don’t think it would matter much.

On the farm…

HARVEST PARTY THIS SATURDAY!!!  Starting at 2 PM and going till sundown, though you are welcome to stay longer for a bonfire and camping, if you like!  It’s a potluck, so bring a dish to pass, and we will have the pizza oven fired up as well.  So if you couldn’t make it to the pizza party, here’s another chance to eat some great wood-fired pizza!  The Stillwater lift bridge is closed, so take I-94 across the St. Croix if you are coming from the Twin Cities.

We would also like to mention that we will have meat chickens that you can pick up at the harvest party.  I will post them for ordering on the web store early next week for delivery to your home on Friday, September 21.  I’ll send an email when they are ready to order.

We had a fun time on Wednesday when our new friends from the show “Around the Farm Table” came out to Turnip Rock to shoot an episode.  We met Inga Witscher through with her dad, Rick.  Rick and Rama have been working on their apprentice hours for cheese making together.  They share a love of small herds of Jersey cows on pasture and raw milk cheese made by hand in small batches.  Rick,  Inga, and her husband Joe have recently started producing “Around the Farm Table” which is a cooking show that focuses on local and sustainable agriculture.  They are really fun to be around and we really admire them as farmers.  It was a great time and we can’t wait to see the Turnip Rock episode when it comes out!  We will let you know when it’s ready to see.  In the mean time, enjoy these pictures we took of the making of the Turnip Rock episode of “Around the Farm Table.”  I forgot to photograph my plate, but it was beautiful and the lunch was so tasty!  Thanks for cooking for us, Inga!

Inga getting ready to cook a red pepper and chard frittata!

Look at the kale in the bouquet! Lauren loving broccoli!

Derek and another lovely edible bouquet

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Week 14; September 6, 2012

What’s in the box?

Full Share

broccoli!

red onions

thyme

sweet red peppers and red bell peppers

heirloom tomatoes

roma tomatoes

garlic

sweet orange pepper

potatoes

pie pumpkin

curly kale

(single shares got all the same items as the full, but in smaller/less quantity)

Notes on the box….

We are happy to have some broccoli again!  It’s coming on very strong because of the continuing hot weather.  We are really hoping the weather will cool down some so that it doesn’t all come ready at once and leave us with very little in the weeks to come (as the tomatoes have done, getting ripe all at once).  This broccoli is very tasty.  Otto has been begging for it!  He sees it on the counter or table or in the field and he points at it and says “bah-ee, bah-ee, bah-ee!” until we give him some.  He ate an entire head (stem and all!) the other day while running around.  Let us know if your kids enjoy it, too!

The greens are back as well.  This week it’s curly kale.  Usually by this time of year the greens are starting to pull out of the summer slump, but this season not so much.  The curly kale is much more resilient than the collards and even the lacinato kale.  Hopefully the other varieties will start looking better as the weather cools.  (The weather is going to cool, isn’t it?!?!)  Store kale in the fridge in  a  plastic bag best in your crisper.  For a quick tutorial on how to de-stem kale, see the link in the kale recipe below.

Winter squash for the week is pie pumpkins.  These are great ones for roasting, then scooping the flesh out and using for pumpkin pie, pumpkin breads, pumpkin soup, or even as a sauce on pizza.  You can also cut them in half and seed them, peel the outside skin with a good vegetable peeler, and dice the pumpkin into chunks to cook in stir fry or curries.  Or you can season them roast them when they are cubed.  These pumpkins will keep for at least a month and usually more.  There’s a good possibility that they may make it to Halloween if you wanted to eat them after keeping them for fall decoration.  Store pie pumpkins out of your fridge along with your potatoes, garlic, onions, and tomatoes.

Thyme can be used in soups or with roasts by giving it a rinse and leaving it in a tied together bundle and added to whatever you are cooking.  When you are ready to serve, simply take out the bundle of what’s left of the thyme.  You can also pull the little leaves off the tough stem by holding the thyme by the upper end of the stem and sliding your fingers down toward the thicker end

Recipes….

Massaged Kale shared by the Boatmans.  Thanks!  They said that even a veggie hater in their family loved this and asked for seconds!

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Lemon Olive Oil Cookies with Thyme are one of my personal favorites.  If you are eating all your veggies, you deserve a sweet treat!

  • 2 cups unbleached flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup Olive oil
  • 4 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • several sprigs of thyme with leaves removed from stems
  • Juice of 1 ½ lemons
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Sugar, for rolling

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Whisk flour, sugar, salt, thyme leaves, and baking soda together in medium-sized bowl. In another small bowl, stir together the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla.
  3. Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, then mix lightly until it resembles wet sand (I like to use my hand, when the dough is squeezed it should form a solid clump). Using your hands, roll dough into balls about the size of a walnut.
  4. Roll in a  little sugar and roll the cookie balls gently in your hands to distribute it. Put the cookies about 2 inches apart on cookie sheets and bake for about 12-15 minutes

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Kale and Potato Soup from Alice Waters Chez Panisse Vegetables

Remove the stems from a bunch of  kale.  WAsh the leaves, and cut them into a chiffonade.  Peel about 2 pounds of potatoes (or just wash them) and chop them up into small pieces.  Bring 1.5  quarts of water to a boil with 1 tsp salt.  Add the chopped potatoes and return to a boil.  Cook for 2 minutes, covered.  Add the kale and cook 2 minutes more.  Taste for seasoning.  If desired, serve with sliced garlic sausage and a splash of olive oil.

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from our wonderful member, Kelly Lynn and her little boy Maxwell, it’s a Kale Smoothie!  

“We are continuing our quest to entice our son to eat more veggies, especially of the green variety.  This morning I (Kelly Lynn) had the bright idea to try kale in a smoothie.  And it worked!  (of course 🙂  All you need to do to make it at home is add 1 cup chopped kale to 1 cup apple juice, a few chunks frozen banana, 1/2 cup yogurt and peeled apple.  Voila!  It’s a “new taste treat” that even the pickiest of eaters can enjoy.  My hubby enjoyed his smoothie too, so grown ups and kid got their super green veggies this morning.  Ye-ah!  A gold star for this mom!”

 

And in case you didn’t try these recipes earlier in the season or from last season….

Broccoli Parmesan Fritters from Smitten Kitchen

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Broccoli Slaw

Wash a couple heads of broccoli and either finely chop (stems and all) by hand or run them through your food processor with the cutting blade attachment.  Place them in a bowl.  Add several finely chopped radishes and/or turnips, a few chopped green onions, and a couple of chopped garlic scapes.  Mix about 1/3 cup mayo with a few tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, 3 Tbsp. (or less) sugar, some salt and pepper.  Pour dressing over veggies, mix well, and allow to sit for at least 10 min before serving.  You can also add silvered almonds, toasted sunflower seeds, and raisins or dried cranberries if you like.

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Kale Chips

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Sesame Kale Salad

Chop a bunch of kale.  Steam or saute for a couple of minutes till just wilted.  Allow kale to cool.  Mix in a serving bowl with 1 T soy sauce or tamari, 1 T sesame oil, some finely chopped garlic scapes, 1 tsp. honey, a splash of apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar.  Garnish with toasted sesame seeds.

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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

On the farm….

Don’t forget to RSVP if you plan on coming to the PIZZA HARVEST PARTY on September 15th here on the farm!

Hail no!

We got some really large hail on Tuesday night.  Thankfully there was not a lot of it and all the crops still look good.  Phew.  Hail is never fun for farmers and can potentially do lots of damage.  We were very fortunate and we hope it wasn’t too bad for any other farmers that may have been hit.

We will be going away to Iowa for a wedding that Josh is a groomsman for, so if you have any questions or concerns, we may not get back to you about them until next Monday.  It’s always a little bit nerve-racking to leave the farm, but Derek and Cassandra will be here making sure no cows escape and everyone is fed and watered.  they will also pick broccoli that will be ready for next weeks delivery!  Thanks, guys!

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Week 13; August 30, 2012

Full Share

Sweet Corn

Kabocha Winter Squash

Potatoes

Sage

Garlic

Red Onions

Peppers – orange, red sweet, red bells

Heirloom Tomatoes

Slicer tomatoes

Green Beans

AND EITHER melon, eggplant, OR red cabbage (not pictured)

Single Share

Sweet Corn

Sage

Tomatoes (heirloom and slicers)

peppers – sweet red, orange, and red bell

garlic

red onions

green beans

potatoes

Kabocha Winter Squash OR melon

Recipes…

Roasted Potatoes with Fried Sage and Brown Butter

Vegetarian Chili with Cornbread Muffins

This is a FANTASTIC lesson on roasting red peppers.  If you aren’t eating all of your peppers right away, you can follow these directions for roasting and then freeze them for later use.

Nice and simple.  Pickled Red Onions

Roasted Tomatoes for the Freezer (Lauren made these last weekend and the smell was AMAZING!  Thinking about eating them in January makes the coming of Winter not seem so bad!)  

Preheat oven to 275.  Line two pans (with edges) with parchment paper.  Cut up as many tomatoes as you want to roast by coring them and cutting them in halves or quarters depending on their size.  Lay tomatoes on the tray, cut side up.  Scatter about a head of garlic (cloves separated and peeled) over the tomatoes, then scatter with fresh herbs (oregano, thyme, or basil are good).  Sprinkle salt and pepper over the tomatoes and drizzle with some olive oil.  Roast for 5 hours.  Remove and let cool.  Pour the contents of the tray, including olive oil and juices, into freezer bags.  If you want to use them as a sauce in the Winter, sautee an onion and add the bag of thawed tomatoes on top of it and cover and simmer over medium low heat for about 20 min.  No canning!

Notes on the box and on the farm combined this week!

Most everything should be familiar from the weeks past, except for the Winter Squash.  It will actually taste better with a couple of weeks storage outside of your fridge.  We don’t usually give Winter Squash right after cutting it, but this variety was ready quite early this season and was getting damaged by critters in the field.  We decided to get it to you right away.  This is a new variety for us to try, and we are on the fence about growing it next season.  We will have Winter Squash each week as the season goes on.  It will store for months and is especially nice to cook in the cooler weather of Fall. Be very careful cutting your squash open!  Cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, place in a pan in the the oven cut side down with a little water and oil in the pan, roast at 400 until a fork easliy pushes in through the skin of the squash.  Serve with butter and brown sugar.

This is the last of the Sweet Corn and melons for the season.  The amount of tomatoes in the box will drop off dramatically at this point.  We planted several varieties at different times so that we would have a nice amount each week until the first frost, but all of our determinant tomatoes (that’s the regular slicers) came ripe all at once.  We had to really load you down the past several weeks, and a lot of tomatoes didn’t ever make it into the boxes because of space issues and other items that are usually ready a little later in the season coming ripe at the same time as EVERYTHING else!  This has made us finally reach conclusive answers to the age-old question, “What Super Hero Power would you have if you could have any Super Hero Power?”  Rama’s  answer is “I would choose the power to pause plant metabolism so that we could make crops wait until we are ready to put them in the CSA boxes.”  Josh’s answer is “I would have the ability to make seeds germinate at any temperature.”  Unfortunately, people ask that question but never give you the power that you ask for.  So that means the next few weeks are going to not look as great as we would like for the CSA boxes.  We planted salad mix, spinach, beets, and carrots which didn’t germinate because of the heat.  We replanted when we had some cooler weather,  and while those crops have germinated, they are nowhere near ready to go into the boxes.  It’s rough for us to walk the fields with a feeling of dread for the next few weeks as we anticipate what we will put into the boxes, but we will do our very best to fill the boxes until the fall crops are ready now that the summer crops are about done.

Sigh.  ANYWAY…  we will be having a PIZZA HARVEST PARTY on September 15 here on the farm!  The jack-o-lanterns are orange, so it’s time!  We are combining our harvest party with a pizza party, so you can enjoy both at once!  You can bring a dish to past and take part in some Pizza from our wood fired pizza oven.  We are super excited to POSSIBLY be having our friend Nona of the band Dark Dark Dark here to sing with her project, The Anonymous Choir  !  We will let you know if that is for sure soon… We WILL have a bonfire, farm tours, food, and farmy fun!  We will start at 3 PM.  You are welcome to camp on the farm if you like!  Please RSVP if you can make it to the party!  We’d love to see you!

We’ve had the BEST YEAR for onions EVER!  Not sure what we did right, but we’ve got some real beauties, and LOTS of them!  Here’s some pictures of us cleaning the onions that had been drying in the greenhouse.

finishing up cleaning and bagging up the yellow onions

Derek celebrates

on to more red onions!

this is gonna take a while!

One of our favorite stories…. about garlic and onions!

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