2015 CSA – Week 18

CSA 18

CSA Newsletter Week 18

Going Greens

While washing salad the other week, I was reflecting on how incredibly different summer salad is from the winter variety. This was a challenging summer for our salad mix. Tender young greens love sunshine, but not as much as we’ve had this year. The sun and bugs spent the summer competing to see who could do the most damage. Thankfully, our pleasant September has brought us more of sweet, salad-ready greens like arugula. As the weather slowly becomes more wintery, these will change to include more hardy characters like kale and mustards.

Greens are always the first thing we harvest in the morning. The sweetness concentrates in the leaves in the cool of the night, and so the flavor of the leaves is better if they are cut early in the morning rather than in the heat of the day. The barn crew heads out early to harvest lettuce, while the field crew trims an enormous load of baby salad greens: different varieties of lettuce, spinach, orach, arugula, endive, mustards, radicchio, kale, and more. The barn crew will later combine and wash the baby leaves in a metal sink that is large enough for four people to take a bubble bath in it, by our estimation. The field crew also gathers bunches of greens and skillfully spins each bunch into a twisty-tie.

Bunched greens are what you will most likely find in your CSA box from time to time, now that the weather is allowing. Today you have green kale, a favorite of mine. If I had to limit myself to one vegetable for the rest of my life (heaven forbid!), it would have to be kale. It’s sweet enough to be rinsed and cut for a fresh salad and topped with goodies like berries, creamy cheese, and toasted nuts, and also it’s hardy enough to be wilted down and added to stews, casseroles, pastas, biscuit batter, you name it!

Box Contents

2 lb. Potatoes

Buttercup: This squash has sweet, dense flesh that makes a wonderfully smooth puree. Halve, de-seed, and bake at 350 F for about an hour. After it has cooled, scoop out the flesh and blend until smooth. It is now ready to be frozen for later or added to soups, breads, cakes, puddings, porridge, and sauces.

Lettuce

Bulk Purple Carrots

Green Kale

Italian Parsley: Your fellow CSA members Kiko D. and Hannah F. tell me they make a killer parsley salsa that’s freezable. It’s just parsley, olive oil, salt, and garlic blended or chopped together. I would mix this salsa into cooked quinoa, and put some wilted kale and a fried egg on top for breakfast porridge.

2 Leeks

Sweet Onion

Yellow Cipollini Onion

Bunched Turnips

1 Colored Pepper

Kohlrabi: Are you about to eat a sugary treat like a donut? Have some peeled, sliced kohlrabi first to fend off digestive discomfort later.