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 13: Making Compost

CSA Week 13 Graphic

CSA Newsletter  – Week 13


Making Compost: Recycling Nutrients on the Farm

Three times a week, our barn crew dumps accumulated organic material from the barn and kitchen. This organic material includes kitchen scraps and things like over ripe tomatoes, cabbage leaves, leek tops, wormy potatoes and beets, limp carrots, to name a few. While not a glamorous job, the compost is a very vital part to our soil fertility.

Recycled plant material is only a portion of the composition of our compost. We haul rabbit, cow, and hoarse manure from neighboring farms as well, leaf matter from the city of Corvallis in the fall and weathered hay bales.  The vegetative material from cover crops, picked through corn rows, etc is also incorporated into the compost.

The compost is tended in long rows that are turned with a tractor powered implement. The rows are turned 2-3 times a week for 4 weeks until they are cooked. Another 4-6 months of curing is optimal but doesn’t always occur. Because of the wet conditions during the winter months, compost must be stockpiled in the fall to carry the farm through the wet season.

The finished compost is used in our propagation house soil mix and is spread on fields in preparation for planting.

Making compost, a dirty job that helps us grow beautiful produce!

 

Table of Box Contents

  Lettuce ($2.00)

☐  1½ lbs Purple Potatoes ($2.25)

☐  3 Colored Peppers ($4.00)

☐  1 Jalapeno Pepper ($0.50) – Some folks on the farm prefer a few hot peppers in the morning rather than a cup of coffee. For the rest of us, incorporate this pepper into any dip, sauté, or salsa for a bit of heat.

  1 lb Green Beans ($4.00) – Sauté with caramelized onions and garlic or blanch and freeze for the winter!

☐  1 Cucumber ($1.00)

☐  1 Honey Orange Melon ($3.00) – Delicious sliced and eaten right off the rind, wrapped in prosciutto, in salad, or blended in a cocktail.

☐  2 Leeks ($4.00)

☐  2 Dried Sweet Onions ($1.50) – Serve fresh in salads, on sandwiches, or caramelize and serve with sautéed veggies.

  Bunch Carrots ($3.50)

☐  1 Eggplant ($3.50)

☐  3 Big Beef Tomatoes ($7.00) – Slice, cook in herbed butter, and serve with fried eggs or make a savory galette. See recipe!

Box Market Value: $36.25


RECIPE

Tomato, Corn and Cheese Galette with Fresh Basil

I’ve dedicated the whole recipe section to this recipe because it sounds so delicious! Sweet galettes are often my go to desert because of their versatility. I don’t often think to make savory galettes although I think I’ll make my own rendition of this recipe soon. Galettes are perfect for fall because there is still an abundance of produce and it is cool enough to bake in the oven! If you’re feeling adventurous, try adding other fillings using the same method. Enjoy!

Cornmeal Galette Dough

1-1/4 cups (5 oz.) all-purpose flour
1/3 cup (1-1/2 oz.) fine yellow cornmeal
1 tsp. sugar
1-1/4 tsp. salt
6 T. (3 oz.) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces and chilled
3 T. olive oil
1/4 cup ice water

In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, and salt. Cut in the chilled butter using a stand mixer, a food processor, or a pastry blender until it’s evenly distributed but still in large, visible pieces. Add the olive oil and ice water and mix until the dough begins to come together. Gather the dough with your hands and shape it into a disk. Wrap the disk in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Finishing the tart:

  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 large white onion (or leek), thinly sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  • 1/2 bunch basil or tarragon, coarsely chopped, (to yield about 1/2 cup); plus 10 whole leaves
  • Kernels from 1 ear of corn (about 1 cup)
  • Cornmeal Galette Dough (see above)
  • 1 large or 2 medium ripe tomatoes (about 3/4 lb. total) cut into 1/3-inch slices, drained on paper towels
  • 3 oz. Gruyère cheese, shredded
  1. Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan, over medium heat. Add the sliced onion and cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, about 10 min. Season with salt and pepper. Add the garlic, chopped basil, and corn and cook for 30 seconds. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and set aside to cool.
  2. Adjust an oven rack to the center position and heat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with kitchen parchment.
  3. Roll the dough on a floured surface into a 15-inch round, lifting the dough with a metal spatula as you roll to make sure it’s not sticking. If it is, dust the surface with more flour. Transfer it by rolling it around the rolling pin and unrolling it on the lined baking sheet.
  4. Spread the onion and corn mixture over the dough, leaving a 2-inch border without filling. Sprinkle the cheese over the onions and corn. Arrange the tomatoes in a single layer over the cheese and season them with salt and pepper. Lift the edges of the dough and fold them inward over the filling, pleating as you go, to form a folded-over border. Pinch together any tears in the dough. Brush the egg yolk and milk mixture over the exposed crust.
  5. Bake until the crust has browned and the cheese has melted, 35 to 45 min. Slide the galette off the parchment and onto a cooling rack. Let cool for 10 min. Stack the remaining 10 basil leaves and use a sharp knife to cut them into a chiffonade. Cut the galette into wedges, sprinkle with the basil, and serve.

Read more: Alexandra Cooks