CSA 2016: Week 3

by GTF Office on June 28, 2016 · 0 comments

CSA Box

CSA Newsletter – Week 3


Succession Planting – extending the harvest

While storage crops such as beets, parsnips, and winter squash, can be harvested at one time and sold gradually, berries or tomatoes can be frozen; many of our crops must be harvested right before being sold. Each Monday and Friday, first thing in the morning, the barn crew goes out into the fields to harvest head lettuce to be sold to restaurants, at market, and to go into your CSA boxes. In order to have a constant supply of mature lettuce each week, we plan for successive plantings of lettuce.

Starting in February and continuing through August, a lettuce planting is seeded every week in the greenhouse, 27 plantings in all. Each planting consists of around 80 flats of romaine, butter, oak and little gem head lettuces as well as specialized varieties for the salad mix. That equates to around 13,000 lettuce plants per week! This weekly planting cycle starts a reoccurring cycle of tasks: thinning of newly germinated plants, transplanting of lettuce once the plants have reached the proper maturity, and then finally, harvest of the mature lettuce heads.  As we harvest the plantings each week, we make room in the fields for other crops to be planted, and the cycle continues.

Enjoy your lettuce and the rest of the veggies in your box!

– Lily Walton, CSA Coordinator

We’d love to see what you’re doing with your CSA box! Share your photos with us on Facebook and Instagram (@gatheringtogetherfarm) and #gtfcsa or send me an email and I’d be happy to share them.

 

Table of Box Contents:

Lettuce ($2.00)

1½ lbs Red Potatoes ($4.50) Store in dry, cool, darkness. Don’t scrub until you’re ready to eat them.

Spinach ($3.00) Eat fresh in salads or sauté

Scallions ($2.00)Great in green salads, eggs, and on the grill!

Bunch Carrots ($3.50) Remove tops for storage. Eat them fresh, roast them, or add them to stir fry.

3 cucumbers ($3.00) Eat fresh or add to salads

2 zucchini ($2.00) cut into 2 inch pieces and sauté with onions, garlic, or both

2 Dried Sweet Onions ($3.00)

Fresh Dill ($2.00) Add to potato salad, salad dressing, and even savory scones

Sugarloaf Chicory ($3.00) Try it fresh! See the recipes

1 Tomato ($2.50)

Box value at the farmers’ market: $30.50

 

Love the Loaf

Sugar Loaf chicory, or pan di Zucchero in Italian, is one of my favorite greens. Yes, you can braise it or sauté it, but if I’m not drizzling it with balsamic and olive oil and throwing it on the grill, I’m eating it in a salad. If you’ve eaten our salad mix, chances are you’ve eaten sugar loaf chicory raw too! Taste is a very individual sense, but I would encourage you to try chicories raw! Their texture and crunch is wonderful and their flavor is crisp and, yes, a tad bitter. Cut the bitterness with an acidic dressing using such things as lemon juice or balsamic vinegar (any vinegar for that matter).  Add elements of sweetness by putting fresh or dried fruit in your salad. If you’re still not convinced that eating raw chicory is for you, then definitely fire up the grill for a smoky, braised loaf.

 

Recipes:

Make your own Vinaigrette Salad Dressing

The possibilities are endless with salad dressing! I like to make the dressing in the same bowl that I am serving the salad in, before I add the greens.

The basic ratio is 3:1, oil to acid (vinegar, lemon juice, etc)

Preparation
In a bowl, add a pinch of salt to the acid and whisk to dissolve

  • (Optional) add an emulsifier such as Dijon mustard, egg or egg yolk, crushed garlic, or mayonnaise
  • Slowly add the oil while whisking until the dressing reaches the desired flavor and consistency
  • (Optional) Add flavor elements such as fresh herbs, minced or thinly sliced onion or shallots, etc

I like let some ingredients such as onions, carrots, or radishes marinate in the dressing before I toss the salad. In the case of chicories, I would toss the salad and let it marinate for a few minutes before eating.

Learn more about dressings and how to make them:

Cooks Illustrated Make Ahead Vinaigrette

Epicurious Homemade salad dressing recipes and tips

 

Cucumber Potato Salad

 Make use of your potatoes, dill, cucumber and onions with this potato salad recipe adapted from Sunset Magazine. Thinly sliced scallions would be a great addition to the salad or they could replace the onion all together.

Ingredients

1 1/2 pounds small red potatoes

1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh dill

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 1/2 cups slivered red onion, rinsed and patted dry

1 cucumber, very thinly sliced

Preparation

1. Bring 1 in. water to a boil in a saucepan. Set whole potatoes in a steamer basket and steam in pan, covered, until tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool in ice water, then pat dry.

2. Whisk yogurt, mayonnaise, dill, vinegar, salt, and pepper in a small bowl to combine.

3. Quarter potatoes and put in a large bowl. Add onion, cucumber, and half the dressing; gently stir to coat. Add more dressing if you like, or save to use as a dip.

Make ahead: Up to 2 days through step 2. Chill potatoes a dressing separately and slice cucumber just before serving.

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Summer is officially here, and with it has come another slew of seasonal produce. It’s now that time of year when a few quick chops is all that stands between you and a meal of simple fresh food. The following recipes focus on quick raw dishes that can be enjoyed without turning on the stove, although I did break down and cook up some zucchini, I just missed it so much all winter.

  • Fresh Cucumber with Lemon and Salt20160622_090504 (2) 700 pixels wide
  • Fresh Kohlrabi with Lemon and Salt (June 4th post)
  • Cocozelle Squash Sauté with Black Kale and Garlic
  • Spinach Basil Salad
  • Pico de Gallo

FRESH CUCUMBER WITH LEMON AND SALT:

Cucumber season is in full swing! Eat them whole like an apple, slice them up with lemon and salt, mince them into a salad- cucumbers are good for everything.

COCOZELLE SQUASH SAUTE WITH BLACK KALE AND GARLIC:20160625_104941 (2)

Summer squash and garlic are soul mates, and when they are together, deliciousness is sure to result. Many people asked me, “One head of garlic? You must mean 1 clove?” No sir, no ma’am, I mean one head! Though garlic is most commonly treated as a seasoning, I prefer to treat it as a vegetable as it provides a savory flavor that makes vegetarian dishes feel especially filling. Feel free to add as much as or as little as you wish! I used Cocozelle in this dish, a type of zucchini that has thicker skin which helps the squash maintain its form without getting mushy in the pan.

  • 3 Cocozelle Summer Squash, sliced into discs
  • 1/2 Willamette Sweet Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 head Garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch Lacinato Black Kale, roughly chopped
  • Olive oil
  • Salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Coat the bottom of the pan in olive oil and bring it up to medium-high heat.
  2. Once up to temperature, add in the chopped onion and cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Add in sliced squash and garlic, stirring around to coat everything in oil. Sauté for about 7 minutes.
  4. Stir in the black kale and add a couple pinches of salt. Sauté for about 3 minutes. Timing is somewhat key here, as we don’t want the squash to get mushy. Make sure to add in the kale while the squash is still a little bit raw so that both the kale and the squash finish cooking about the same time in the pan.
  5. My favorite way to eat this dish is for breakfast topped with two fried eggs and some hot sauce. However it is also delicious along side rice and chicken, or just by itself.

SPINACH BASIL SALAD:20160625_104933 (2)

Spinach is not the biggest fan of hot weather, so I made this dish in an effort to enjoy it in its prime before we all have to go a month or two without its tender greens in our lives.

  • 1 bunch Spinach, roughly chopped
  • 2/3 bunch Basil, finely chopped
  • ~6 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • ~4 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1/4 Willamette Sweet Onion, minced
  • Salt to taste, 2-3 pinches

Directions:

  1. Mince the garlic and onion and place them in a medium bowl.
  2. Pour the olive oil, salt, and balsamic vinegar into the bowl, and mash the onion and garlic into the dressing a bit with the back of a spoon. This is the magic secret! All those onion and garlic juices will release into your dressing making it incredibly flavorful.
  3. Chop up the spinach and basil and toss them in the dressing.
  4. This salad is delicious as is, although if you let it sit 10-15 minutes before serving, the vinegar will break down the spinach a bit making for an extremely tender salad.

PICO DE GALLO:20160625_115024 (2)

Pico de Gallo is one of my main dinners during the summer. All you have to do is roughly chop up the following ingredients, dump them all in a bowl, and mix them around. Serve with tortilla chips, on top of tacos, or if you’re crazy like me, grab a spoon and experience just how fresh summer can taste. You’ll notice from this picture that I like my pico with heavy quantities of onion; for those of you who prefer less onion, feel free to add less.

  • 4 medium Tomatoes
  • 1 medium-large Willamette Sweet Onion
  • 2-3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1/2 bunch Cilantro
  • 1/3 bunch Basil
  • Lemon Juice to taste
  • Salt to taste

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Lunch Menu: Week of June 20, 2016

by GTF Office on June 21, 2016 · 0 comments

1699-web

composed salad

Antipasti:

*bread/olives  4.0

*bread/ pesto  5.5

*country pork pâté/mustard/cornichon  5.5

*tomato/marinated mozzarella/basil  6.5

*bruschetta/beef tongue/baby onion 6.5

*ricotta sformato/grill zucchini/pesto   6.5

*mixed field greens, balsamic vinaigrette  6.5

*GTF salad  –  beet/blue/cuke  10.5

*cold cucumber soup/bread  4

*roasted pepper soup/ bread   4

Pizze Rosse:

*garlic/tomato/basil/mozz   9.5

*bacon/blue/onion/mozz  10.5

*bells/zukes/kale/mozz  10.5

 

Pizze Bianche:

*tomato/olives/mozz 10.5

*ham/caper/egg/mozz 10.5

*duck/anchovy/scallion/mozz  10.5

–add an egg, pickled jalapenos

or anchovies for  $1

1697-web

semolina gnocchi with braised pork shoulder and cavelo nero


Secondi:

*spaghetti carbonara, pork belly, capers & blue cheese   10

*semolina gnocchi with braised pork shoulder and cavelo nero  10

*creamy polenta with soft farm egg*, zukes, tomato & balsamic reduction 10

*savory bread pudding with carrot, tomato, baby onions, beet greens & basil pesto  10

*composed salad of grilled tuna, tomatoes, potatoes, olives & aioli*   12.5


Dolce:

*almond cream tarte w/ marionberries  5.5

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2016 CSA – Week 2

by GTF Office on June 21, 2016 · 0 comments

CSA Week 2 Graphic

CSA Newsletter – Week 2


Storing Produce

Storing produce is not only important for you to make the most of your box, but it is also an essential part of our farming operation. Throughout the season and especially during fall, we will harvest large quantities of a crop that matures at the same time such as cabbage, winter squash, beets, carrots, and other root vegetables. These crops are stored in large totes, cardboard boxes, or wooden crates. Some produce does best stored just above freezing while other produce keeps best at warmer temperatures.

Proper storage is so critical for our farming operation because we often harvest more produce than we can sell immediately. Proper storage techniques help us hold our harvest so that we can sell it gradually, over time. On the farm, we have two walk in coolers where space is at a premium, especially during fall harvest. But we also have to get creative when space is limited. In the fall we convert our propagation houses into winter squash storage and the shelves in our packing shed fill up with bins of onions.

This week is all about proper produce storage so that you can make the most of your CSA. So don’t feel overwhelmed if you have more potatoes or carrots than you can eat this week. Store them properly and you can eat them several weeks from now!  The backside of the newsletter has a storage guide that we have compiled over the years. If you have any storage tips or tricks that you would like to share, we would love to hear from you!

– Lily Walton, CSA Coordinator

 

Table of Box Contents:

☐ 1½ lbs Potatoes ($4.50)

☐ Swiss Chard ($3.00) separate the stems from the leaves for cooking. Great sautéed and cooks a bit quicker than kale.

☐ Bunch Beets ($3.50) roast or boil the beats and use the greens for sautéing. Balsamic vinegar and goat chèvre with beets is a personal favorite.

☐ Arugula ($3.00) Use as a salad green, in sandwiches, pasta salad, or even make pesto!

☐ Baby Onions ($2.50) Onions with a bonus! Use the greens as you would scallions.

☐ 2 Zucchini ($1.50)

☐ Kohlrabi ($1.25) Delicious fresh or dressed in salads

☐ 2 cucumbers ($2.00)

☐ Dry Garlic ($1.50) Bend this up with some arugula or basil for fresh pesto

☐ Storage Onion ($1.50)

☐ Bunch Basil ($3.00) trim the stems and place them in a glass or jar of water, just like cut flowers. Loosely cover it with a plastic bag and leave it on the counter.

☐ 1 Siletz Tomato ($2.50)

☐ 1 Pint of peas ($4.00) great for eating fresh, in salads, or in stir-fry.

☐ Lettuce ($2.00)

Box value at the farmers’ market: $35.75

 

Storage Tips:

VEGETABLE & storage time HOW TO STORE LONG TERM STORAGE TIPS (The big four: Freezing, Canning, Pickling, Dehydrating)
GREENS AND HERBS: Tender greens last about1 week; hardy greens 2 weeks. Store wrapped in a paper towel (or a mesh greens-bag if you have one) inside of a container or bag in the fridge.  Greens with their roots still attached keep well in a bowl of water. * Many types of herbs can be dried by hanging upside down with twine in a dry, sunny place.

* Many greens can be blanched and frozen. Or, make greens-pesto and freeze it.

* Hardier greens like kale can be coated with oil, salt & pepper, and baked to make chips.

DRY ROOTS

like potatoes, onions, garlic:

1-2 months

Keep them cool and dry. Keep potatoes in the dark lest the sunshine turn them green. * Potatoes do NOT freeze well.

* Make vegetable stock! Throw in almost any veggies and herbs, bring to a boil, simmer 30 min, strain, and freeze until you need it.

FRESH ROOTS like beets, carrots, radishes, onions:
1-2 months
Break off tops so the greens don’t continue to draw sugar out of the roots. Store in a closed container in fridge. Don’t scrub or peel until you’re ready to eat them, or they will get soft faster. * Many roots make good refrigerator pickles. Slice and cover with a mixture of your favorite vinegar, a spoonful of salt and sugar, and spices (like mustard seed, dill, coriander, etc.). After about 3 weeks the flavors will start to meld.

* Slice, coat with oil and dehydrate for chips.

TOMATOES

1-2 weeks

Store at room temperature. Don’t put them in the fridge or they will get watery and weird! Keep them dry. Tomatoes are superstars for canning or dehydrating. Sauce can also be frozen, but the texture and flavor will not be quite the same.
MISCELLANEOUS VEGGIES  (broccoli, fennel, cabbage, etc.) and FRUITS (any “vegetable” with seeds inside, like zucchini, pepper, cucumber, etc.):
1-2 weeks
Most veggies like to be kept dry in the fridge with limited air exposure. DO NOT GET FRUITS WET. Plastic or glass containers are great; plastic bags are not quite as good because they limit air circulation too much.

Melons, eggplant, tomatillos, and peppers can stay at room temp a few days, but they prefer it cooler for longer storing.

* Many veggies can be blanched and frozen.

* Grate carrots or zucchini into muffins, and freeze to pull out for breakfast later.

* Refrigerator pickles (see above). Pickled peppers and cucumbers are especially popular, but there’s no reason not to get creative with veggies like broccoli, green beans or fennel!

* Make sauerkraut out of extra cabbage by slicing and keeping it immersed in salt water.

* Brush thinly-sliced veggies like squash, beets, parsnips, etc. with oil and salt. Dehydrate for chips.

* With tomatillos, make salsa verde for canning or blanch and freeze.

 

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2016 CSA – Week 1

by GTF Office on June 14, 2016 · 0 comments

CSA Week 1 Graphic

CSA Newsletter  – Week 1


Greetings from the Farmers

Thank you for joining us in our 19th CSA season! Last week, I saw the first heirloom tomato in the barn – a sure sign of the summer bounty that is yet to come. Your contribution as a CSA member provided a much needed kick start to our off-season allowing us to do such things as purchase seed and graft tomatoes months before the first harvest. The next 21 weeks is our way of saying thank you for your support.

Thank you to those who were able to contribute to the scholarship fund. This year we were able to make it possible for two local families take part in our CSA program.

The CSA newsletter is a way for me to share a little bit about the contents of each box, keep you up to date on farm happenings, and share ideas about ways to prepare your weekly supply of veggies. We would also love to hear from you! Share your favorite recipes or preparation methods, pictures, or questions. If you are social media savvy, you can find us on Facebook and Instagram at @gatheringtogetheringfarm and hashtag your pictures and comments with #gtfcsa so that we can find you! I will be sure to share tips, recipes, and questions in future newsletters.

Thanks so much everyone. Happy first week!

– Lily Walton, CSA Coordinator

 

Table of Box Contents:

☐ Lettuce ($2.00) Store greens in mesh bag (or paper towel) inside plastic bag or container in fridge.

☐ 1½ lbs New Potatoes ($4.50) Store in dry, cool, darkness. Don’t scrub until you’re ready to eat them.

☐ Red Kale ($3.00) Separate the stems from the leaves by holding base of the stem and sliding your the other hand along the stem towards the tip of the leaf. Reserve the stems for sautéing or for adding flavor to soups or stews.

☐ 2-3 Zucchini ($4.00) Great on the grill or sautéed with garlic and onions.

☐ Bunch Carrots ($3.50) Remove tops for storage. Eat them fresh, roast them, or add them to stir fry.

☐ 3 cucumbers ($3.00) Eat fresh or add to salads.

☐ 2 Storage Onions ($2.00)

☐ Fresh Thyme ($2.00)

☐ 1 Siletz Tomato ($2.50)

☐ 1 head cabbage ($4.00)

Box value at the farmers’ market: $31.00

 

Recipes:

The Versatility of Kale

Kale has become quite a popular vegetable touted for its nutritional value and cancer fighting properties. However I love kale because of its taste and versatility. It can be eaten raw, blanched, sautéed, you name it.

For a decadent raw kale salad, try this recipe from The Pioneer Woman. The vinegar in the dressing helps to break down the hardy kale leaves.


Killer Kale Salad

4 slices thin bacon, cut into bits

1 tablespoon butter

1 whole medium red onion, halved And sliced

8 ounces, weight white mushrooms, sliced

1/2 cup white wine

Salt And pepper, to taste

4 ounces goat cheese crumbled

3/4 cups olive oil

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

1 bunch kale

  • Fry the bacon bits until slightly crisp. Drain on a paper towel.
  • Pour out most of the grease and add the butter to the skillet. Add the onions and cook them over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, until soft. Remove them to a plate. Add the mushrooms, stir, then add the wine, and salt and pepper. Turn the heat to medium-high and cook the mushrooms for several minutes, until most of the wine has evaporated and the mushrooms are soft. Remove them from the heat and set them aside.
  • Add the olive oil, vinegar, thyme, salt, and pepper to a mason jar and shake it to combine.
  • Remove the kale leaves from the stalks, then roll them up in batches and slice very thinly. Place the kale in a bowl. Add half the dressing and toss. Then add mushrooms, onions, and bacon and toss again. Finally, add the goat cheese and more dressing if needed, and toss. (Reserve extra dressing for another use.)

Oven Roasted Veggies, with or without Chicken

If the weather outside is any indication (at least in Philomath), maybe it isn’t quite summer yet. This box is perfect for roasted veggies – onions, carrots, potatoes, and season with olive oil, salt, fresh thyme and any other herbs that you have around. If you’re a meat eater, roast the veggies with bone in chicken thighs.

Preparation:

  • Preheat oven to 450 ° F
  • Cut onions, carrots, potatoes, and any other root veggies that you may have into evenly sized pieces. If potatoes are small, leave them whole
  • Toss with a few pinches of salt, thyme (oregano and parsley if you have it), and 3 tablespoons (or more) of olive oil
  • Place veggies in baking dish or a cast iron pan
  • Blot dry chicken thighs, brush with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper
  • Place chicken on top of roasted veggies and bake for 40-45 minutes until the skin is crispy and browned and the vegetables are tender.

 

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