2016 CSA – Week 18: After the Harvest

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CSA Newsletter – Week 18


After the Harvest

I said my goodbyes to a house of heirloom tomatoes as I helped clear it out for the next planting. It is another reminder of the changing seasons and another reminder that a farmer’s work is never done!

When we harvest many of our crops, such as beets, turnips, potatoes, more often than not, the whole plant is harvested and the field is pretty much cleared and ready to be turned over to the next crop in the rotation. Sometimes, we add an amendment or two and then we turn over the soil and prep it to receive the next planting.

However, some crops require more work before the ground is ready for the next planting. Crops such as tomatoes, eggplant, and cucumbers that are harvested continuously often require trellising infrastructure. Once the crop is done producing, the plant matter, up to 10 ft. tall, must be uprooted and hauled away. This can be a messy job as there are inevitably some rotting vegetables in the houses as well. The trellising setup must be dis-assembled and any drip irrigation must be removed. Only then can the soil be prepared for the next planting.

It’s a lot of work but I think that we can agree that the delicious results are worth the extra effort!

 

Table of Box Contents

☐  Lettuce ($2.00)

☐  1½ lbs Huckleberry Gold Potatoes ($3.00) – Beautiful purple potatoes with yellow flesh that is creamy and buttery. Great as mashed potatoes, roasted, or baked.

☐  Scarlet Kabocha Squash ($4.50)

☐  1 lb Sunchokes ($4.00) – These knobby tubers caramelize beautifully when roasted. See recipe.

☐  Bok Choy ($3.00) – This beautiful, Asian vegetable is delicious in stir-fries and soups.

☐  2 Colored Peppers ($1.25)

☐  1 Bunch Colored Carrots ($3.50)- This bunch of carrots not only beautiful but they are just as delicious as they look!

   Romanesco ($6.25) – This fractal vegetable is beautiful and delicious! It is in the brassica family and is related to broccoli and cauliflower. Blanch it in boiling water and then shock it under cold water or in an ice bath. Us it in stir-fries, salads, or grill it!

☐  1 Dried Sweet Onion ($0.75)- Sweet onions don’t store as well as other varieties. It is delicious raw in salad, sautéed with greens, or in soup. 

  1 Dried Red Onion ($0.75)

☐  3 Roma Tomatoes ($3.00) – These tomatoes are great for sauce, soups, or roasting. They have firm flesh and are less juicy which lends itself to cooking but they are also delicious in salsa. If you want to save them for soups or sauces for winter, you can freeze the tomatoes whole.

 Box Market Value: $32.00

 

Recipes

Creamy Kabocha Squash Polenta

 I tend to roast squash and eat with a little butter and salt, but if you wanted to incorporate it in a dish, polenta is a perfect base.

 Ingredients

  • 1 Kabocha Squash
  • ½ cup cream
  • 2 cups polenta
  • 2 oz parmesan, grated
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  1. Remove stem from squash. Halve, scoop seeds, and bake face down in 1/2″ water at 400 F until tender, 20-30 minutes. Allow to sit for about 10 minutes. Scoop flesh into bowl with an immersion blender or blender. Add the cream and blend to get a thick and very smooth purée. Season with salt.
  2. Bring 3 cups water to a boil with 1 t salt. Stir in polenta and stir until your arm wants to fall off – about 30 minutes. Try to stir as much as possible as it makes it creamier. At around the 20-minute mark, stir in the kabocha and cheese. Season with nutmeg and white pepper and salt to taste.

Read More: Food52

 

Roasted Sunchokes

This knobby tuber caramelizes wonderfully when roasted.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Sunchokes, scrubbed
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped Italian or curled parsley (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees
  2. Scrub the Sunchokes with a potato brush and chop into 1 inch bite-size chunks
  3. Toss in a medium sized bowl with olive oil, salt and pepper until coated
  4. Place onto a baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes, turning once, until the skin is slightly browned
  5. Sprinkle with fresh parsley. Serve plain or with a side of ketchup.

Read More: OliveandHerb

 

Sautéed Romanesco with Garlic

Any fresh vegetable sautéed is bound to be delicious. I find that with most things, getting them a little color or even char greatly enhances their flavor and texture. In addition to sautéed garlic, try incorporating caramelized onions or shallots into this recipe.

Ingredients

  •  1 head of Broccoli Romanesco, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 good pinch of salt
  • 2 cloves of garlic, pressed and mixed with 1 tbs water
  • Parmesan or Romano cheese to taste

  Directions

  1. Bring some well-salted water to a boil.
  2. Cook the Romanesco pieces until just tender, about 3 or 4 minutes
  3. Drain the broccoli pieces and run under cold water until they are cool.
  4. Heat the oil in a pan until it is a hot and begins to shimmer
  5. Add the garlic and for 30 seconds. It should start to smell good and garlicky.
  6. Now add the Romanesco and a pinch of salt and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  7. Grate cheese over warm Romanesco and enjoy!

 

2016 CSA – Week 15: CSA Box Assembly

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CSA Newsletter – Week 15


CSA Box Assembly

This week I gained a greater appreciation for our CSA box assembly system. For no good reason other than its September and I just plain forgot (and the boxes had so many delicious veggies this week!), I didn’t to pull that last pallet of veggies out for the CSA line. I only realized that chard was missing from the box half way through the process! Adding chard to each box after they were assembled was certainly not as fun or easy as rolling the boxes down the assembly line.

Each week, we assemble the CSA boxes on Monday for midweek pickups and Friday for weekend pickups. After a morning of washing, lettuce, greens, salad mix, and filling orders, the barn is cleared to setup the CSA assembly line. The veggies are pulled out of the cooler, one pallet at a time, and are arranged in stations on either side of a rolling assembly line.  Potatoes are always first in the box followed by heavier things such as squash, melons, and cabbage. Root veggies and greens are next with onions, peppers and herbs to follow. Lettuce is always the last ingredient in the box.

This week, there were two people stationed at the potatoes, one at the acorn squash-melon station, one at the carrots-turnips-broccoli station, one at the Anaheim-poblano-dill station, one at the onions station, and one at the lettuce station. I’m at the end of the line; lidding boxes, checking to make sure that they have all of the ingredients, adding salad mix to salad lover and addict’s boxes, and making sure the right number are placed on each pallet. Once the line gets going, it’s a whirlwind of action until the last pallet is assembled.

 

Table of Box Contents

☐  Lettuce ($2.00)

☐  1½ lbs Potatoes ($2.25) – Make your own hash browns for breakfast or breakfast for dinner! See recipe.

☐  1 Honey Orange Melon ($5.00)

☐  1 Poblano Pepper ($1.00)

☐  2 Red Anaheim Peppers ($2.00)

☐  1 Bunch Hakurei Turnips ($3.50) – While these sweet turnips are delicious in salads or stir-fry’s, I typically end up snacking on them like an apple. The greens are delicious sautéed or in soup.

☐  1 Bunch Carrots ($3.50)

☐  Acorn Squash ($2.50) – Cut in half, remove the seeds (save for roasting), and bake face down in the oven until tender. Serve plain or with a little butter and maple syrup.

  Swiss Chard ($3.00)

  2 Dried Yellow Onions ($1.25)

☐  1 Dried Red Onion ($.50)

☐  Broccoli ($3.50) – Roast, sauté, grill, or make broccoli salad with garlic and sesame. See recipe.

☐  Dill ($2.00) – Use in potato salad, soups, or dips and dry the rest for later use. Dill can also be infused in vinegar, oil for, or butter for later use.

☐  2 lbs Big Beef Tomatoes ($6.00)

 Box Market Value: $41.00

 

Recipes

Homemade Hash Browns

After a weekend of hiking in the rain, I made a hearty breakfast complete with fried eggs and homemade hash browns. Homemade hash browns are delicious and easy to make.

  1. Shred potatoes and immediately put them into a bowl of cold water. Let soak for a few minutes.
  2. Place the potatoes on a (clean) dish towel, wrap them up and squeeze out any excess water.
  3. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add a few tablespoons of butter or oil. Once it’s melted, add the potatoes in a thin layer and turn the heat down to medium-high.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Cook until very crispy and brown on the bottom, then flip and cook on the other side.

Read More: The Pioneer Woman

 

Broccoli Salad with Garlic and Sesame

Technically, this is a raw salad but the vinegar and oil in the dressing tenderize the salad as it marinated in the dressing.

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste
  • 2 heads broccoli, 1 pound each, cut into bite-size florets
  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 fat garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons roasted (Asian) sesame oil
  • Large pinch crushed red pepper flakes.

Preparation

  1. In a large bowl, stir together the vinegar and salt. Add broccoli and toss to combine.
  2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil until hot, but not smoking.
  3. Add garlic and cumin and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  4. Stir in sesame oil and pepper flakes.
  5. Pour mixture over broccoli and toss well. Let sit for at least 1 hour at room temperature, and up to 48 (chill it if you want to keep it for more than 2 hours). Adjust seasonings (it may need more salt) and serve.

Read More: NYT Cooking

Pan Seared Carrots with Lemon and Dill

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch (about 1 pound) carrots, scrubbed and patted dry
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1 tablespoon dill, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 

Preparation

  1. Cut carrots crosswise into pieces approximately 3 inches long. Cut any thick ends in half lengthwise, so all pieces are about 1/2- to 3/4-inch thick. In a bowl, toss with the oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  2. Preheat pan over medium-high heat. Place carrots cut-side down on the pan and cover. Cook for 4-5 minutes, until the carrots develop sear marks and are beginning to soften. Flip, cover, and cook for another 4-5 minutes. Carrots will be softened with a bit of crunch in the middle.
  3. Transfer the carrots to a bowl. Mix in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, dill, lemon juice and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Read More: TheKitchn

2016 CSA – Week 12: Picked by Hand, Ripe off the Vine

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CSA Newsletter week 12


Picked by Hand, Ripe off the Vine

Harvest time is in full swing and it sure is lovely to see the bounty of delicious food all over
the farm, and beyond! With such a volume of produce all around us, it is easy to forget that
everything is harvested by hand, when it is ripe. That means that each ear of corn is touched to check for
maturity and a full ear before it is picked. Each watermelon is tapped for the telltale thud of
ripeness. Each pepper is evaluated for the perfect coloration. Each green bean is selected for crispness
and maturity. Wow, that is a lot of work and a lot of hands!

Many hands are the nature of our organic agriculture system. Careful, skilled hands work hard
to pick, plant, and grow the best produce for recipients such as you, every day. The quality of the
produce that results from all of our hard work is the ultimate reward.

Here’s to savoring each and every bite. Enjoy!

-Lily, CSA Coordinator

Table of Box Contents
☐  Lettuce ($2.00)
☐  1½ lbs Yellow Potatoes ($2.25)
☐  2 Pimento Peppers ($2.25) – A thick walled, deep red sweet pepper that is often found canned in the grocery store. Delicious as pimento cheese or in any recipe calling for red pepper.
☐  2 Italian Peppers ($1.25) – Grill or broil and use in soups, sandwiches, dips, or salad.
☐  1 Bunch Basil ($3.00) – Delicious with tomatoes, as pesto, or as basil butter. See recipe!
☐  1 Golden Crown Watermelon ($6.00)
☐  1 Dried Red Onion ($0.50)
☐  2 Dried Sweet Onions ($1.75) – Serve fresh in salads, on sandwiches, or caramelize and serve with sautéed veggies.
☐  Bunch Carrots ($3.50)
☐  1 Head Napa Cabbage ($3.00) – Make an Asian slaw, stir-fry, spring rolls, or try making homemade kimchi
☐ 3 Big Beef Tomatoes ($6.00)
☐ 4 Ears of Corn ($4.00) – Delicious raw, grilled, or steamed. Try with basil butter! (See recipe)

Box Market Value: $35.50

 

The Lee Brothers Pimento Cheese

I was introduced to Pimento Cheese while living in North Carolina during
college. It is delicious on just about anything but is traditionally served
between to pieces of bread. Like many southern classics, there are many
regional variations so feel free to modify the recipe to your liking!
Ingredients

  • 8 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • ¼ cup softened cream cheese (2 ounces), pulled into several pieces
  • ½ cup roasted pimento peppers finely diced
  • 3 tablespoons Duke’s,store-bought mayonnaise (or make your own)
  • ½ teaspoon dried red chileflakes
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Preparation

  1. In a large mixing bowl, place the cheddar cheese in an even layer.
  2. Scatter the cream cheese, pimentos, mayonnaise and chile flakes over the cheddar cheese.
  3. Using a spatula, mix the pimento cheese until it is smooth and spreadable, about 1 1/2 minutes.
  4. Transfer the pimento cheese to a plastic container or bowl, cover tightly, and store in the refrigerator.
  5. Pimento cheese keeps in the refrigerator for 1 week.Read More: NYT Cooking

 

Basil Butter

Butter is delicious on just about everything and herbed butter is really delicious on just  about everything! Put this butter on grilled corn, toast, and just about anything else. This butter will keep for about a week or two.

Ingredients

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup basil, loosely packed
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt

Preparation

  1. Add the butter, basil, and salt to a food processer and blend.
  2. You may need to scrape down the sides once or twice.
  3. When the basil is finely chopped and the butter has a light green tint, it’s done.Read More: Food52

 

Napa Cabbage Salad with Sweet Tamari-Sesame Dressing

Napa Cabbage Salad Ingredients

  • 1 large head napa cabbage, washed and finelychopped
  • 4 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and cut into matchsticks
  • ½ to ¾ cup fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons sunflower seeds (optional)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons sesame seeds

Tamari-Sesame Dressing Ingredients

  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • 3½ tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon tamari (soy sauce)
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup or honey

Preparation

  1. In a large serving bowl, combine the cabbage, scallions, carrots, red pepper, and cilantro.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, olive oil, sesame oil, tamari, and maple syrup
    or honey until emulsified.
  3. Pour the dressing over the salad, thoroughly toss to coat, and sprinkle with the seeds.Read More: Blissful Basil

2016 CSA – Week 9: Expanding the Farm Fleet: The Veggie

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CSA Newsletter – week 9


Expanding the Farm Fleet: The Veggie Mobile

One of the things that I love about farming is the constant need for innovation. Challenges arise on a daily basis and it takes creativity and ingenuity to move forward — constant problem solving.

Farmer John Eveland has had a longstanding innovation challenge that came to fruition last week with the inaugural trip of the GTF Mobile Veggie Truck. John hopes that this truck will help the farm bring veggies to folks in under-served areas without regular access to fresh, organic produce.

Since acquiring a retired bottled water truck a few years ago, John has been working away at retrofitting the truck as a veggie mobile. This meant installing pop up awnings, custom built in pop out displays, oh and giving the retired truck’s engine a bit of a tune up!

It has certainly been a shared project as our agronomist took on the task of fabricating the awnings, a local carpenter designed and built the pop out displays, and two local artists painted a beautiful mural on the back.

It is really fun to see that after many years of farming, there are always new, exciting things on the horizon.

Have a wonderful week!

-Lily, CSA Coordinator

 

Table of Box Contents

Lettuce ($2.00)

☐ 1½ lbs Potatoes ($2.25)

☐ Green Cabbage ($4.50)

1 Colored Bell Pepper ($2.00) – Grill or broil pepper halves. Let cool and remove skin. Use to make in salads, eggs, on sandwiches, or make romesco.

☐ 2 Dried Sweet Onions ($1.75)

1 Dried Red Onion ($0.75)

1 Sweet Italian Pepper ($1.00) – Eat fresh in salads, grill, or sauté. Substitute in any recipe calling for bell peppers.

☐ 2 Jimmy Nardello Peppers ($1.25) – Great for sautéing or frying, see recipe.

☐ Bunched Carrots ($3.50)

½ lb Spinach ($4.50)

☐ 4 Zucchini ($3.50)

¾ lbs Green Beans ($3.00) – Blanch or sauté plain or season with bacon, garlic, butter, lemon juice, or make garlic and ginger string beans (see recipe).

2 Tomatoes (~1 lb) ($3.00)

1 Pint Cherry Tomatoes ($3.50)

Box Market Value: $36.50

 

Recipes

Beyond the Bell Pepper: Jimmy Nardello Sweet Italian Frying Pepper

This variety was brought to the US in the late 1800’s by an Italian family and was grown by them for almost 100 years. The seed was donated to the seed savers exchange in 1983, before Jimmy Nardello passed away at the age of 81.

The Jimmy Nardello pepper has a characteristic scrunch towards the stem and has thinner flesh than the more common bell peppers. This thin flesh lends itself well to frying rather than roasting as with bell type sweet peppers.

Fried Jimmy Nardello Peppers

  1. Slice peppers in half lengthwise (removing seeds optional)
  2. Heat olive oil in a frying pan on medium-low heat
  3. Add the peppers to the frying pan stirring constantly until the skins are blistered and the peppers are slightly wilted, 6-8 minutes.
  4. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and serve.

Serving Suggestions:

  • Sauté with garlic (add at the end of cooking) and/or other herbs such as parsley.
  • Pairs well with a soft cheese such as goat chèvre, fresh mozzarella, burrata.
  • Also delicious served on top of steak.

 

String Beans with Ginger and Garlic

Sometimes a very simple recipe is the best way to enjoy such high quality, fresh food. This NYT cooking recipe is simple and delicious. If you’re not inspired by garlic and ginger, use the bean preparation technique and season your beans with something else to your liking. This recipe can easily be adjusted to a larger quantity of beans.

Ingredients

  • 3/4 pounds string beans (French-style slim haricots verts work especially well), trimmed
  • 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger (about 2 inches ginger root, peeled)
  • 1 medium-size garlic clove, minced

Preparation

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and fill a large bowl with ice water. Boil beans until just tender but still crisp and bright green. Start testing after 4 minutes or so, being careful not to overcook. When done, plunge beans into ice water to stop cooking, lift out immediately when cool and drain on towels. (Recipe can be made to this point up to a day in advance and kept refrigerated, wrapped in towels.)
  2. When ready to cook, heat oil in a wide skillet over high heat. Add beans, ginger and garlic, and cook, stirring and tossing constantly, until beans are heated through and ginger and garlic are softened and aromatic. Sprinkle with salt, and remove to a serving dish.

Read More: NYT Cooking