2016 CSA – Week 14: Tomatoes Aplenty

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CSA Newsletter – Week 14


Tomatoes Aplenty

Put plainly, this has been a bountiful year for tomatoes. We planted the same amount of row feet in tomatoes as we did last year but this year we have so many more! The variables that contribute to the success of a crop are numerous, including location, fertility, plant variety, and even weather.

Grafting has been an ongoing project in which we improve our process each year. The grafted root stock can improve disease resistance and vigor over the course of the season resulting in healthier, higher producing plants. Additionally, the scion (vegetative, fruiting part of the plant) variety selection plays a large role in disease resistance and ultimately yield. This year, we grafted varieties that are bred for improved disease resistance in greenhouse conditions and we are certainly seeing some great results!

Even with 9 markets a week, restaurant orders, and the CSA, and our own tomato roasting efforts, we still have tomatoes galore!

A few folks have asked about ordering additional produce for canning and preservation. I am extending the invitation to all CSA members that we are taking bulk orders for tomatoes and some additional produce. Email Chris at gtf@gatheringtogetherfarm.com to place an order.


Table of Box Contents

☐  Lettuce ($2.00)

☐  1½ lbs Potatoes ($2.25)

☐  1 Red Watermelon ($6.00)

☐  2 Colored Bell Peppers ($4.00) – Delicious sautéed with onions and garlic and served with eggs. Also, try adding them to cornbread, see recipe.  

☐  1 Bunch Carrots ($3.50)

  Green Kale ($3.00) – Sauté with onions and garlic, use in soup, or make a kale and cabbage salad, see recipe.

2 Dried Sweet Onions ($2.25)

☐  Red Cabbage ($6.00) – Try making coleslaw with fresh mint and golden raisins or make kale and cabbage salad, see recipe.

☐  Italian Parsley ($2.00) – This bold, hearty herb is delicious in salads and dressings and it also makes a nice pesto, see recipe.

☐  2 lbs Big Beef Tomatoes ($6.00)

Box Market Value: $37.00

 

Recipes

Loaded Cornbread

I made cornbread for the first time in a long time last week and I forgot how delicious it is! I adapted the recipe by adding grated cheese, fresh corn cut off the cob (raw), scallions, and chipotle powder. I don’t often cook with buttermilk but it is worth getting for this recipe. Incorporate chopped peppers, onions, herbs, dried spices or other flavors. The possibilities are endless!

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus butter for baking dish
  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly grease an 8-inch baking dish.
    In a large bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together the eggs, buttermilk, and butter. Pour the buttermilk mixture into the cornmeal mixture and fold together until there are no dry spots (the batter will still be lumpy). Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish.
  3. Bake until the top is golden brown and tester inserted into the middle of the corn bread comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the cornbread from the oven and let it cool for 10 minutes before serving.

I prefer to bake cornbread in a cast iron skillet. Leave it in the oven as it preheats and pour the batter in when the skillet is hot out of the oven.

Read More: FoodNetwork

 

Kale and Red Cabbage Slaw with Turmeric Tahini Dressing

Ingredients

  • 1 Red cabbage
  • 1 bunch Fresh kale
  • 1/2 cup Toasted hazelnuts
  • 1 tablespoon Poppy seeds
  • 2 tablespoons Tahini
  • 1 tablespoon Organic raw honey
  • 1/2 cup Fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric powder

Preparation

  1. Chop the red cabbage in the food processor and use a knife to roughly chop the kale (do not remove the stems, as they’re also loaded with nutrients). Place both in a big bowl. Serve garnished with toasted hazelnuts.
  2. Place the dressing ingredients in a blender and process to obtain a smooth paste.
  3. Pour it over the veggies, add the poppy seeds and stir to combine.

Read More: Food52

 

Parsley Thyme Pesto

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups Italian flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup thyme leaves
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1/2 cup toasted walnuts
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt

Preparation

Combine parsley, thyme leaves, lemon zest, Parmesan, walnuts, and garlic in a food processor. When finely chopped, add olive oil in a steady stream until pesto is smooth. Season to taste with salt.

Read More: Food52

CSA 2011 – Week 6: Water, Water Everywhere…

In the Willamette Valley, most of the time we are spoiled with beautiful, warm, and dry summers. That is really most of the allure of living here. The summers are phenomenal; they warm your soul up enough to last the six rainy months of the year. This past weekend was not the summer that I know. It is interesting to think about how the rain really affects all of the vegetables in the fields. It doesn’t affect them all in a negative way, as it does my personal vitamin D level.

One vegetable that is affected in a negative way is garlic. Our garlic that is trying to dry has a hard time drying in rain, even if it’s covered or under a tarp. The moisture in the air and ground can easily seep its way into that freshly harvested garlic. Luckily the crew is on top of making sure the garlic is covered before rains, but like I said that doesn’t always keep it dry. The tomatoes are not so fond of downpours either. Of course they need water to grow well, but when it pours and then warms up that causes the skins of tomatoes to split. This type of occurrence has the same effect on cherries as well. Some crops thrive in cool rain, for example potatoes and most brassicas (such as kale and cabbage). Lucky for us we grow such a variety of crops that when one crop has a difficult season, there is another crop booming. I guess this goes along with the saying,…

…‘don’t put all your eggs in one basket.’

*CSA Tour and Tasting: Sunday August 28th 2-5pm *
Join us for a farm tour, melon and tomato tasting!

What’s in the Box?

1.5 lb Potatoes (Nicola and fingerling) – These are best steamed, fried, or boiled.
Purple Carrots, bunched – They are great raw, on salad, slaw or stir fried.
1 bunch baby Walla Walla onions – chop the onions and eat raw on salads or soups. The top green part goes well with eggs, cheese, stir fries, or pasta.
1 red cabbage – make slaw, braise it, or use it in a stir fry
2 Leeks – They go great with eggs in a scramble, omelet, in soup, or stir fried.
1 pint sugar snap peas – Eat them raw or do a quick sauté with olive oil and salt.
Summer squash (1lb) – Try them sautéed, grilled, grated raw, soup or stir fried.
Red or Green Leaf lettuce – Make a salad, or add to sandwiches.
2 cucumbers – Eat raw, on salad, or marinate them.
1 bunch dill – Yummy addition to potato salad, cucumber salad, or slaw!
1 Siletz tomato – Chop raw on salad, eat plain like an apple!
1 pint of cherries – picked from the trees down the road at Fritz and Beverley Lonsway’s house.

Recipes:

Stir-fried Sugar Snap Peas

1 pint sugar snap peas, ends and strings removed
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 bunch baby Walla Walla onions, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 Tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Stir fry onions and peas in olive oil for about 3 minutes. Add sesame seeds and cook another 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the toasted sesame oil. Season to taste.

Vegetable Leek Medley

2 medium leeks
2 summer squash
2 carrots
4 Tablespoons butter
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut top and root end off the leeks and set aside. Cut the leeks in half length wise and chop into 1/4 inch size slices. Rinse the chopped leeks and set aside. Finely chop carrots and zucchini. Sauté carrots and leeks in butter. When they are almost cooked all the way through (5-10 minutes) add the zucchini and cook for another 2 minutes. Season to taste.

Zucchini Cakes

4 cups grated zucchini
1 Tablespoon salt
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cups bread crumbs
Sea salt and pepper
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
4 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Mix zucchini with salt and let stand 1/2 hour. Rinse well with water and squeeze dry in a tea towel. Mix with eggs, onion, bread crumbs, cheese, and cayenne pepper and season to taste. Form into cakes and sauté a few at a time in butter and olive oil.
Variations: You could add chopped or roasted garlic, sautéed leeks, shredded carrots, chopped onion tops, or even dill to this recipe!