CSA 2019 – Week 1: Seasonal Eating with Gathering Together Farm

CSA Newsletter – Week 1


Seasonal Eating with Gathering Together Farm

Welcome back! Welcome for the first time! Welcome to seasonal eating with Gathering Together Farm! We are so excited to embark on this food journey
with you. And we cannot thank you enough for your membership support this season. Our CSA program is crucial to the functioning of our farm, with funds
coming in just in time to buy seeds and prepare for the season to come. Not a day goes by that we are not grateful for your support, and we send these
veggies to thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

Each week you will receive a bountiful box of the highest quality veg from our farm, in addition to one of these handy dandy newsletters. Noticing what’s in season when, we can get more in touch with the rhythm of eating in the Pacific Northwest. These letters are designed to help guide you through the seasons, keep you in touch with life on the farm, and provide you with recipe ideas. I’m not a huge fan of recipes and exact measurements and all that jazz, so I invite you to use these recipes as inspiration, start getting in touch with your senses, and feel your way through the cooking process. Messiness & creativity are essential ingredients!

It’s going to be a nourishing season of eating and learning, of boxes packed to the brim with produce, and of stories and lessons gleaned from a life intimately intertwined with the sun and the soil. With summer about to burst into action, this week down at the farm we’ve been busy transplanting all the winter squash babies that will feed us come fall! To farm is to always be looking ahead while maintaining focus on the ground in front of you.

Welcome to the GTF community! Be sure to come visit us at our farmstand and restaurant this season!

Sincerely, the CSA Team—Owners John & Sally, Joey
the Business Manager, your CSA Manager Will, and
yours truly, Laura, your own farm-to-table vegucator.

Table of Box Contents

1 ½ lbs. Fava Beans— What may seem like a spongy alien bean pod is actually an incredibly delicious and versatile June gem. They can be prepared in many ways, ranging greatly in prep time. 1. Shell beans and remove each individual skin to reveal pure sweet beans from within. 2. Keep the skins
on & sauté up for a nearly just as delicate and delicious experience. 3. My personal favorite option is to fry, grill, or roast the full pods and dress with a little oil and salt, and enjoy them like edamame. It’s less work, it’s fun to
eat the beans from the pod, and they’re crazy delicious!
4 Stalks Rhubarb—Of course rhubarb is excellent in desserts, giving a sour pectin punch to any fruit pie, crisp, or galette. But it can also be used as a tart pop in savory dishes like cranberries, raw in a salad, or cooked down to a compote/sauce and served alongside meat or meat substitutes.
Romaine Lettuce—It’s crisp, it’s fresh, it’s lettuce in June after a long winter of root crops!
White Russian Kale
2 lbs. Colorado Rose Potatoes—These red-skinned, white-fleshed New Potatoes have been freshly dug from the ground rather than procured from storage. They’re particularly moist w/ delicate skins, perfect for roasting up
or boiling.
2-3 Cucumbers—Even more exciting than lettuce are cucumbers! There’s nothing like that first bite into a crisp, watery cucumber of the season. With the hot weather, our cukes have burst into production the past few weeks.
Chives—Mince these up

Recipes

Smashed Potato Salad w/ Herb Vinaigrette (or Pesto)

This recipe is amazing!!! It is also crazy delicious tossed with pesto rather than an herb vinaigrette!

Use what you’ve got and get creative. Follow the link to watch the lovable chef Jake Cohen prepare

this dish. Adapted from https://thefeedfeed.com/jakecohen/smashed-potatosalad-

with-herb-vinaigrette

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs Small Potatoes, scrubbed
  • Kosher Salt, to taste
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup Parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbsp Mint, chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh Thyme leaves, minced
  • 1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
  • 1 tsp Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp Crushed Red Pepper
  • 1 Lemon, zested and juiced

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F. In a pot, add potatoes and cover with cold water.

    Season with salt and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook until tender

    when pierced with a knife, 10-12 minutes. Let cool slightly, then using the bottom

    of a measuring cup or glass, smash each potato until ¼-inch thick.

  2. Transfer smashed potatoes to a sheet pan and toss gently with ¼ cup of

    the olive oil and salt. Roast, flipping halfway through, until golden brown and

    crisp, 35-40 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients

    with remaining ¼ cup olive oil until smooth. Adjust seasoning with salt.

  4. Transfer potatoes to a bowl and spoon dressing on top, then serve.


Grilled, Roasted, or Pan-Fried Favas

This is such a simple food to prepare, you really don’t need a recipe. Whether you grill, roast, or pan fry your fava bean pods, you basically turn the heat up medium-high to high and cook each side so that it’s golden or a bit charred. I mean, you want the beans inside cooked too, so it needs to take a good 3-8 minutes. If you fried or roasted them in a little oil, just salt them once removed from the pan. And if your grilled them, feel free to salt and serve with or without the addition of olive oil. Eat with your fingers!

Rhubarb Chutney

Adapted from https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/7308-rhubarb-chutney

Ingredients

  • 4 cups Rhubarb, coarsely diced
  • 2 cups Light Brown Sugar (or honey to taste!)
  • 1/2 cup Lemon Juice
  • 1/2 cup Cider Vinegar (optional)
  • 2 Tart Apples, peeled and coarsely diced (optional)
  • 1 cup Raisins (optional)
  • 3 tbsp Fresh Ginger, minced (optional)
  • 10 Black Peppercorns (optional)
  • 4 Whole Cloves (optional)

Instructions

  1. Place the rhubarb, sugar, and lemon juice in a heavy saucepan. Bring to a simmer and add the remaining ingredients.

  2. Continue to simmer 20 minutes or so, until the rhubarb is tender but still holds its shape.

  3. The chutney will keep for many months in the refrigerator. For pantry storage, transfer the mixture to sterilized jars, seal with sterilized lids and process five minutes in a boiling water bath, or alternatively, place the hot mixture in freshly sterilized jars, seal the jars with sterilized lids and invert the jars on the counter top for five minutes. (This is a new method that has proved safe.)

CSA 2019 – Registration is open!

We are now accepting 2019 CSA memberships!  Sign up now to receive 21 weeks of local, delicious, organic produce straight from our farm to your table.

CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. It is a grassroots movement to bring consumers into a closer relationship to their food producers. Also, by purchasing your CSA share now during the winter or even in early spring, you’ll give our farm more of an income during the winter months when produce is sparse, which helps us to pay for seeds, soil, and supplies for the coming year. Our gratitude to you for this support is beyond words. 💗 We’ll do our best to showcase our wide variety of incredible produce in each box during the CSA season to make it worth your while. 

We look forward to sharing this next season of organic bounty with you!

Sign up here:  https://www.gatheringtogetherfarm.com/csa-registration

CSA 2018 – Week 21: Farewell Veggie Lovers

CSA Newsletter – Week 21


Farewell Veggie Lovers

Hi folks,
We made it. Twenty-one straight weeks of real, good, food. We know, it wasn’t always easy, there were probably times where you let a kohlrabi sit in the bottom drawer of your fridge for weeks until it krinkled up like a shrunken head. We forgive you for that. It happens. You did your best! You ate so much good food! And you had to actually take the time to cook to do so. Give yourselves a pat on the back, folks. Any amount of time spent devoted to cooking and eating good food can seem impossible in this busy, modern world that we’ve constructed, but you made it happen. Celebrate! With more vegetables!

This last box is a good one. Black radishes are like the new-age susty* jack’o’lantern as they can be carved into intricate skulls for any day of the dead celebration, before eventually being consumed, of course. They have an intense, feel-it-in-your-nose kind of wasabi heat that only a brassica root knows how to give you. Polish people that I did not know lived in Oregon come and find us at market just for these radishes, so they must be pretty good… But of course you also have a pie pumpkin this week, so you could always keep it old school and carve that up before making a brilliant pie creation as well. The possibilities are endless.

Thanks so much for supporting us this season. Farming is no easy task, and community support is required for it to function. And thanks so much to everyone who read any or all of these newsletters! It’s been lovely sharing some of our experiences on the farm with you this season. You’ve been a fabulous audience, and we hope to see you again next season.

Best, Laura Bennett

 *Susty is short for sustainable, but more like how a hipster says it

Table of Box Contents

  • Black Radish—Black radishes are like watermelon radishes’ evil twin, with a much stronger bite that is almost medicinal. Radish dichotomies the likes of which have never been known. These radishes are excellent shredded into salads and eaten raw for maximum nutritive content, but they can also be mellowed nicely when roasted or caramelized (see recipe). Black radishes also make for a great pickle! Add cider vinegar, water, honey, and your spices of choice for a crisp mellowed experience.
  • Parsnips—These sweet roots are similar to a carrot or a sweet potato, and can be utilized in similar ways. I especially love to chop thin parsnip sticks to make pan-fried parsnip fries (you only need a half-inch of oil, but you can only do one layer at a time) dipped in aioli (see past recipes).
  • Thyme—Hang and let dry to use over time.
  • Bok Choy—Fall’s crisp offering to replace lettuce
  • Shallots—Those garlic x onion crosses that make your eyes water with a fury no regular onion can muster. Excellent used with or instead of onions in any dish.
  • Pie Pumpkin—For anyone who has never made a pumpkin pie, please take this as a sign that you should do so. It’s really not that hard. Just buy a crust, look up a recipe, and make the filling, we won’t judge you. Enjoy!
  • Lacinato Kale—Also known as black kale, Lacinato has savoy cabbage genes which are responsible for its unique, rumply, thick leaves. I like to make many thin slices down the leaves to break them down into small pieces before braising and then dressing. Caesar dressing goes great! It’s just as easy to make as aioli in a mason jar.
  • Green Kabocha—The roasted chestnut of giants. Roast it, add your lipid of choice (butter, oil, ghee), and salt it. It has such a nutty flavor and creamy texture.
  • Nicola Potatoes—waxy, buttery, and versatile

Recipes

Warm Quinoa Salad w/ Roasted Black Radishes, Kabocha Squash, and Sautéed Lacinato Kale

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch Black Radishes, quartered
  • 1 lb Blue Kabocha Squash, cut into 1/2-inch slices
  • 4 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil, plus more for dressing
  • 4 sprigs Thyme
  • Sea Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups Quinoa, uncooked
  • Chicken Broth for cooking quinoa
  • 1/2 Purple Onion, sliced
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 pinch Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 bunch Lacinato Kale, roughly sliced
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1/4 cup Raw Pumpkin Seeds
  • 1/4 cup Dried Cranberries
  • Juice from 1/2 Lemon

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare quarter black radishes and slice squash into ½-inch pieces. Place on baking sheet and add thyme sprigs. Drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, flip everything over, and roast for another 20 minutes. Remove from oven and put aside.

  2. While vegetables are roasting, cook quinoa according to package instructions, using chicken broth instead of water. When cooked, remove from heat and keep covered.

  3. While quinoa is cooking, slice purple onion and sauté in 2 tbsp olive oil. Add garlic and a pinch of red pepper flakes and cook until fragrant. Add sliced collard greens. Toss well, add 1/2 cup water, and cover. Steam until greens are tender, about 10 minutes.

  4. Assemble salad: place quinoa in a large bowl. Layer collards and roasted veggies. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds and cranberries. Drizzle juice from 1/2 lemon and olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Alternatively, use dressing of your choice! ENJOY!  

 

Stir-fried Beef w/ Bok Choy & Black Radishes

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp high heat Oil, divided
  • 1 1/4 lbs Flat Iron Steak, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp Hoisin Sauce
  • Kosher Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • 2 Green Garlic Stems, chopped (or a few cloves of garlic)
  • 4 medium Turnips or Black Radishes, coarsely chopped
  • 1 lb Bok Choy, stems and greens coarsely chopped, separated
  • 3 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Sriracha
  • Sesame Seeds

Instructions

  1. In a large wok, heat 2 tablespoon of canola oil over high heat. Season beef with salt and pepper and add to wok. Cook for 2-4 minutes, until meat has browned. Transfer meat to a large bowl and stir in hoisin sauce. Cover and set aside.

  2. Pour out extra liquid from wok. Lower heat to medium high, then add remaining canola oil to wok. Add in garlic, scallions, and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add in turnips and bok choy stems. Cook until stems soften, about 5 minutes, then add in bok choy greens. Pour in soy sauce and Sriracha, then cook about 2-4 more minutes, until greens are wilted. Adjust salt to taste.

  3. Serve beef over vegetable mixture. Top with sesame seeds.

CSA 2018 – Week 20: Getting Botanical with Celery


CSA Newsletter – Week 20


Getting Botanical with Celery

Hi folks,

We cannot believe that there is only one more week of CSA after this! We’ve been thoroughly enjoying the rare, warm, sunny October days out in the fields. Any October day in Oregon that doesn’t require full rain gear is a very good day. This week you have celery in your box. You’ve already received celery root – celery’s staut, hardy cousin – but I thought it would be interesting to take a look at some other vegetables in the celery family who all have similar flavor profiles, growth habits, and flower structures, known botanically as the inflorescence.

The celery family is known as Apiaceae, and is home to carrots, parsnips, parsley roots, parsley, cilantro, dill, fennel, lovage, and other such aromatic plants that don’t grow as well in our climate such as caraway and cumin. The familiy is also home to various weeds such as queen anne’s lace, poison hemlock, and cow parsnip, a tall weed that you find growing near water in Oregon.

One leading feature that ties this plant family together is the flower structure, known as an umbel. And to follow along with our theme of fractals from last week, Apieaceae flowers are often made of compound umbels—an umbel made of umbels. When you see an umbel, that you will now able to site ID a plant family! Take a peak into the world and see if you can spot Apiaceae on your plate or on the ground.

Best, Laura Bennett

 Table of Box Contents

  • Celery—First of the season folks, woo! Don’t believe the gossip about celery taking more energy to chew than you get from eating it; they’re blasphemous lies. Most vegetables decrease in their nutritive content when cooked, but celery retains most of its nutrition and is therefore a great addition to soups and stir-fries, in addition to being crunchy and refreshing raw.
  • Delicata Squash
  • Butternut Squash
  • Cauliflower—This week you’ll be receiving either a green or white cauliflower.
  • Bunched Carrots
  • Swiss Chard
  • Green Bell Pepper
  • Sweet Colored Bell Pepper—Enjoy the last of these gems!
  • Leeks—Buttery onion magic
  • Nicola Potatoes 

    Recipes

    Roasted Butternut Squash Coconut Curry Soup/Puree

    Adapted from Food52 recipe:

    https://food52.com/recipes/1060-roasted-butternut-squash-coconut-curry-puree-soup 

    Ingredients

    • 1 tbsp Olive Oil, plus more if needed
    • 2 1/2 medium Butternut Squashes, cut in half and seeded
    • 2 pinches Salt & Pepper, plus more to taste
    • 2 tbsp Coconut Oil
    • 2 large Yellow Onions, chopped
    • 1 Sweet Peppper, seeded and chopped
    • 1 Jalapeno Pepper, seeded and chopped
    • 4 cloves Garlic, chopped
    • 2 inches Fresh Ginger, peeled and chopped
    • 1 tbsp Soy Sauce, naturally brewed (tamari)
    • 1 tbsp Red Curry Paste
    • 2 tsp Garam Masala (preferably) or Curry Powder
    • 14 oz Coconut Milk
    • 2 cups low/no sodium Vegetable Broth
    • 1 handful Cilantro, chopped

    Instructions

    1. Preheat oven to 375° F and coat a large cookie sheet with olive oil.

    2. Sprinkle each half of butternut squash with salt and pepper and lay cut side down on cookie sheet. Bake for about an hour until fork tender. Let cool for a bit and peel skin off, I used an old grapefruit spoon, but you could use a paring knife. Cut into chunks.

    3. While butternut squash is roasting you can get started on the soup. In a large heavy bottomed pot heat up coconut oil at medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger and sauté till onion turns translucent (about 8 minutes). Add the red pepper and jalapeño. Season with salt and pepper and cook for about another 10 minutes (stirring and taking care not to burn).

    4. Add in soy sauce, red curry paste, garam masala/curry powder and stir to coat. Add the coconut milk, veggie broth, and 2 1/2 of the roasted butternut squashes and stir to combine. I used my potato masher to further mash up the butternut squash.

    5. Bring to a boil and simmer for approximately 30 minutes. Puree if desired in batches in blender. Return to pot and add extra broth depending on how thick/thin you want it to be and season to taste. When ready to serve, sprinkle the cilantro over it.

     

    Chard Agrodolce

    Adapted from Food52 recipe:  

    https://food52.com/recipes/14237-chard-agrodolce 

    Ingredients

    • 1 bunch Rainbow Chard or Swiss Chard, stems and leaves separated, with stems chopped into 2- to 3-inch pieces and leaves chopped into thirds
    • 1 tbsp extra virgin Olive Oil (or butter)
    • 1 pinch Salt
    • 1/4 cup Chicken Stock
    • 1/4 cup White Wine
    • 2 tbsp White Wine Vinegar
    • 2 tbsp Honey
    • 2 tbsp Toasted Pine Nuts (optional)

    Instructions

    1. Sauté the chard stems in the olive oil and a little salt until they start to break down, about 6 to 8 minutes.

    2. Add the stock and wine and let them cook down for about 5 to 6 minutes, then add the chard leaves. Once they have wilted, add the vinegar and honey.

    3. Let it cook down until the liquid has mostly evaporated and the chard is soft. You can add some toasted pine nuts over the top if you want some added crunch.

CSA 2018 – Week 19: Fractals in Fall

Hi folks,

This week’s box is home to a very special guest—Romanesco. This unique fractaled beauty is a very direct view into the ways in which plant growth is defined by mathematical laws. Fractals are infinite patterns that repeat at multiple scales. Staring in at the florets of a romanesco you can get lost in the same way as you can with computer-generated fractal images.

Once upon a time I was fairly obsessed with fractals. I played around with geometry any time that I had a pen, constructing logarithmic spirals that obeyed the same laws of the Fibonnacci sequence (1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13…) that cells and leaves and branches must obey as plants grow. The arrangement of leaves on a stem, of stems on a branch, and of branches on a full plant is known botanically as phyllotaxy. These arrangements allow for leaves and branches to occupy their own space and maximize sunlight exposure without shading one another. Modern engineers even copy this organization to create hip highrises with balconies that each have privacy and a nice view. All plants obey these laws of nature, but certain plants such as romanesco are simply good at flaunting it. Just a little piece of farming that is often never seen.

Best, Laura Bennett

Table of Box Contents

  • Romanesco—This is probably the coolest vegetable you’ll ever see. Its fractal structure looks like it was digitally created with the Mandelbrot set when in fact it is just a product of nature. Its texture is quite like cauliflower but with a nuttier flavor. Cut the spears off stem by stem to maintain their perfect fractal shape.
  • Buttercup Squash—Buttercup squash is moist like a sweet meat squash with a Kabocha-like chestnut flavor. The blue stem end is known as a turban and makes this squash very nice for stuffing with a lid.
  • Watermelon Radish—We started growing this radish a few years ago and it has been a farm favorite ever since. It is a large radish that is pale green on the outside with a pink burst center. The flavor varies throughout the season, but they can range from mild to quite spicy depending on the weather. Their texture however is consistently crisp and refreshing.
  • Savoy Cabbage—When a leaf is said to be savoyed, it means that it’s rumply, like lacinato kale, which has savoy cabbage genes in its history. These rumples allow for many nooks and crannies to be filled with soups and sauces, making for a particularly delicious cabbage experience and textural delight.
  • Red Russian Kale
  • Cilantro
  • Bunched Carrots
  • Nicola Potatoes
  • Pepper Surprise
  • Dried Sweet Onions
  • Red Leaf Lettuce
  • Tomato

Recipes

Vegetarian Stuffed Buttercup Squash

Adapted from https://all-thats-jas.com/buttercup-squash.html 

Ingredients

  • 1 Buttercup Squash, about 3 to 3 1/2 pounds
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup Quinoa
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 8 oz Crimini (Baby Bella) Mushrooms, quartered
  • 2 large leaves of Kale, stem removed and finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp White Wine or Water
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp Dried Cranberries
  • 1/4 cup Raw Almonds
  • 2 stems fresh Parsley, finely chopped
  • 2-3 oz feta cheese (optional)

Instructions

  1. Cut a hole on top of the squash, shaping a lid by inserting your knife on an angle. Discard seeds and loose fibers. Rub the inside with some oil. Set aside.

  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

  3. Place quinoa in a saucepan and cover with 1 cup water. Bring to a boil, lower the heat immediately and let gently simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and set aside for 10 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a large skillet. Sauté the onions, mushrooms, and kale until soft, 3-5 minutes.

  5. Add the wine, thyme, salt, and pepper and cook for about 5 more minutes. When the liquid is almost evaporated, add cranberries, almonds, and parsley. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust the flavors.

  6. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the cooked quinoa. Add the crumbled feta cheese and toss to combine. Fill the buttercup squash with the quinoa stuffing.

  7. Place the squash on a baking sheet. Replace the lid on top and bake for about an hour, depending on the oven and on the size and type of the squash. Check the squash flesh with a knife from time to time and stir around the stuffing with a spoon.

  8. The squash is ready when skin is browned and bubbly and the flesh is soft. Garnish with parsley and feta.

Buttermilk Bagna Cauda

Adapted from https://food52.com/recipes/5108-buttermilk-bagna-cauda 

Ingredients

  • 3 cloves Garlic, peeled and halved lengthwise
  • 2 sprigs Thyme
  • 3 tbsp Butter, unsalted
  • 4 Anchovy Fillets
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • 1 pinch Salt, more if needed
  • 2 tbsp Buttermilk
  • Fresh and lightly blanched vegetables, like asparagus, green beans, cauliflower, Romanesco broccoli, small carrots, etc., at room temperature

Instructions

  1. Drop the garlic and thyme into a small saucepan, add the butter and melt over low heat. Simmer the garlic (pulling the pan off the heat if the butter ever bubbles actively) until it's softened, about 10 minutes.

  2. Add the anchovies and mash with a wooden spoon to dissolve them. Stir in the olive oil and let heat through. Season with salt -- taste as you go! (LB addition—I also stir in extra olive oil and spicy pepper flakes)

  3. Whisk in the buttermilk. Serve with a platter of vegetables. Kalamata olive bread is also traditionally served with this dish.