Just a reminder: PLEASE SIGN IN WHEN YOU PICK UP YOUR SHARE.
This week your box contained:
1 bunch of Basil. Maybe there's enough here to make a little pesto. I just added a recipe to the website for Grilled Eggplant, tomato, mozzarella and pesto stacks.
2 red slicing tomatoes. I love just toasting some bread, slathering with mayo, adding a thick slice of tomato (seasoned with salt and pepper), then a leaf of lettuce, and chowing down.
1 pint of small tomatoes - Juliet or Mountain Magic. juliet looks like something between a grape and a plum tomato. mountain magic is round. They both have tomatoey flavor as opposed to the candy-tomato flavor of cherry tomatoes. I love to use them in pasta dishes - halved or quartered and thrown in at the end just to take on a little heat but keep their texture and form. They are great for salads. Juliet in particular lends itself to be roasted or oven-dried (cut in half and salted or drizzled with olive oil first).
1 Bunch of Beets. Try a new variation on a roasted beet salad. If any of the tops are good you can sautee them up.
2 Italian Eggplant. Eggplant Parmesan. Eggplant Rollatini. Baba Ghanouj (great for dipping cucumber sticks). Grilled Eggplant. Eggplant Pizza. Eggplant Caponata.
2 Asian Eggplant. Try these in a sautee, or diced and roasted. Of course they are always easy to slice lengthwise and grill. You can also slice and make eggplant parmesan with these, I just usually slice on the bias to make a larger piece.
Zucchini & Summer Squash. The zucchini is a little large this week - perfect for Zucchini Bread. Click the link for my mom's yummy recipe. Large yellow squash can make an excellent soup. Last week I made corn stock (see the entry under corn). I sauteed some diced onion in butter (with pinches of salt) until nearly translucent, added diced squash and let it soften a bit, covered with the corn stock and let that become completely tender. I pureed that with the immersion blender, leaving it a little chunky for Chris who hates pureed soups. Then I added chopped basil tossed with olive oil. taste for salt and pepper. At that point I chilled it. The next evening I had chilled soup served with a dollop of sour cream. Chris heated his up (he also hates cold soups) and suggested crumbled bacon would be a good touch (agreed). Another day I heated it up, added fresh corn kernels cut off the cob and put in a spoonful of tomatoes i'd roasted (diced raw would be equally good) and a quick dollop of sour cream. If you have a dehydrator, you can dehydrate diced or sliced squash and zucchini to throw into winter soups. I know two ladies doing it!
1 Bunch of Celery. As always, we have not grown the big, juicy, crunchy kind of celery that you put peanut butter on and have for a snack. Ours is very potent and a little stringy (is there a euphemism for "stringy"?). Focus on the flavor. Dice it up fine and put it in pasta salad, tuna, chicken salad, egg salad. Use it to make a chicken soup. At least put the leaves in to make stock. You can also bunch the leaves in a rubber band, hang it upside down somewhere cool and dry and have dried celery leaf to season every stock you make for a while. When it's fully dry just crumple and store in an airtight container. Celery and onions are the perfect base to all savory sauces, even tomato sauce, they go great in burgers, and are crucial for stuffing. You could probably make a killer Cream of Celery soup, too.
3 Ears of Sweet Corn. here it is. Enjoy! Of course you can steam it up for corn on the cob. If you want to maximize the use of your corn, try using the cobs to make stock. So first shuck the ears and then hold the ear upright on the cutting board and use a sharp or serrated knife to cut off the kernels (it's okay if they come off in blocks, they'll break up). You can use that corn any way you like and you can make a stock with the cobs. Just put them in a big pot, cover with water, add some peppercorns, a bay leaf, some clean veggie peels (clean onion/garlic skins) carrot ends, celery leaves, whatever. Simmer for a few hours, then strain. The stock can be used as a base for a light summer version of corn/clam chowder or any whimsical soup/risotto of your fancy. Al Forno, the restaurant in PVD I waitressed at for years, taught me this trick. They truly celebrate corn. It goes on their grilled pizza with spicy oil and scallions. There is a tomato and corn salad with garlic grilled croutons, diced red onion, and a balsamic vinaigrette. And of course, the summer clam chowder. tomato, basil, corn, littlenecks in their shells, butter, white wine and corn broth - served with grilled croutons. yum! Corn is awesome in a salsa with beans, tomato, hot peppers, diced onion, cilantro and lime. A sautee of sweet peppers with yellow squash, onions, and corn with maybe some leftover shredded chicken is a nice quick meal, served with creamy polenta and a sliced tomato salad.
2 Slicing Cucumbers. Today I made a tasty salad by whisking together a quick mustard, honey, garlic, basil, lemon, and oil vinaigrette. I threw in peeled, diced cucumbers, a rinsed can of chick peas, some diced onions and peppers I had leftover from putting on a pizza, a couple chopped tomatoes, and some crumbled feta. Yum! and does not require lettuce and has some protein for those of us trying to grow a human :)
2 Heads of Lettuce. Romaine and Green Leaf. The turkeys thank you for sharing.
6 Green Bell Peppers. Stuffed peppers. Thai Green Curry. Grilled peppers.
2 Hot peppers (available for you to pick up at the table if you wanted). From mildest to hottest: Early Jalapeno (fat, dark green), Hungarian Hot Wax (long chartreuse green), Serrano (skinny, cylindrical dark green). Nachos, Salsa, Jalapeno Margaritas, who knows!!
Sweet Honey! Fresh Local Honey from our awesome beekeepers at Franklin Honey is now stocked at the stand. Roger and Lauren keep the bees here at White Barn Farm, plus some at their place in Franklin, and at a cranberry bog in Wareham. Our delivery last Thursday sold out by Saturday morning, but we're stocked back up, so come on down anytime. In fact, this weekend, Friday Aug. 3rd from 2p - 7p and Saturday Aug. 4th from 10a - 2p, Franklin Honey will be set up at the farmstand selling all of their bee products. If you want to talk to a beekeeper and stock up on all their lovely bee-based soaps, candles, healing hand salve, refreshing lip balms and more, come by! Their products make such nice gifts for a friend or for yourself!
As always, Jordan Brothers Seafood will be here on Friday from 2pm to 7pm. But there is more good news: He is going to start coming on Tuesdays as well! This is probably extra-exciting for our Tuesday CSA members who may only have the chance to come to the stand on their pick-up day. Now you can get some super high-quality seafood to make an easy, quick dinner Tuesday nights. Sure, Fish Fridays is easier to remember with the alliteration, but Fish Tuesdays is becoming a reality beginning this Tuesday, August 7th, during regular stand hours, 2pm to 7pm.
The market shed is coming along. My dad is up to his usual tricks of fixing mechanical breakdowns and building cool stuff to improve the farm. Thank you, pops!!! Don't miss the new display case to the left as you enter our tent. It is on the side of the shed and the doors open to reveal gleaming jars of Franklin Honey, fresh roasted coffee beans from Sheldonville Roasters, and we even put our White Barn Farm pint glasses out for sale. The left side will be a community bulletin board and the right side we will paint with chalkboard paint for White Barn Farm announcements. Shelves are built inside the shed, too! yay! The dreams become realities, little by little.
We were thinking the other day that until a wonderful bakery pops up in town, we would love to have a good source of bread. It goes so well with vegetable based dishes as far as turning them into a meal!! We know that Cafe Assisi gets deliveries from Iggy's Bread in Cambridge, so we thought maybe we could get a delivery, too! Chris called up, made it happen, and it looks like we will start having bread for sale beginning on Tuesday. Bon!!! I'm sure it will take a little while to figure out exactly what you all are demanding and in what quantities - so give us lots of feedback. Iggy's doesn't use any preservatives so we will want to be fairly accurate with our order (one day shelf life for most products). Otherwise the eaters at White Barn Farm will be overrun with croutons, crostini, bread pudding, panzanella, breadcrumbs and stuffing!
Perhaps that is all you can digest at this moment! Beat the heat. Fans, cold showers, ice water, and Olympics!! Stay cool with a cucumber salad or maybe ever cucumber slices over your eyes :)
Thanks you for your kind support. I truly appreciate the attitudes of our wonderful customer base. You're the nicest around!
See You Soon!
Chris, Christy, the farm crew, and the farm baby-to-be!
P.S. If you think you might be interested in a daytime music performance at the farm, check out the Moonshine Music Series facebook page.
Howdy Partners! Sorry this is late! I actually wrote most of this yesterday and then got whisked away by the farm . . .
This week's share is a colorful one. Just what I like to see!
In the box this week:
2 lbs yellow onions (uncured again). They went into the bags for weighing a little bit wet so I recommend taking them out of the bag and drying them out. Then they can go in a basket on the counter or in a bag in the fridge.
2 lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes
1 Italian Eggplant. This lavender purple variety is named Beatrice. Treat it just like a "normal" black Italian eggplant. Roast or Fry for eggplant parm. Chris made a quick and tasty lunch by thawing out some sesame seed buns we had kicking around, whipping up a garlic, basil, olive oil, can of tomato - sauce, and quickly slicing eggplant, marinating it with olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic powder, then dredging them through some Panko breadcrumbs and roasting. The result: Eggplant Parm Sloppy Joes. Bun, Eggplant slices, sauce, and a healthy grind of parmesan. very good, chris!
2 Asian Eggplants. This dark purple variety is called Orient Express. These slender tender veggies are really good on the grill or roasted. They work great for a stir fry or a quick sautee of summer veggies to go in a burrito, on crostini, in an omelet, etc.
1 Yellow Squash. The squash invasion is slowing and the eggplant and pepper invasion is about to begin! Good ingredients around for Ratatouille this week . . .
5 green peppers. This is a good chance to make stuffed peppers. or grill. or char and peel. or fry up with onions and sausage.
1 little bag of basil
5 little ears of sweet corn. These are a sweet corn variety named Spring Treat. Not sure why they are so mini, but we opened a couple yesterday and found the kernels nicely formed and tasty. Here is your taste of organic sweet corn.
2 Tomatoes. 1 Red and 1 Orange. The orange one is named Orange Blossom and it is ripe now. I really enjoyed a tomato sandwich that Chris made me on Saturday while I was at the farmstand. He just toasted some whole grain bread, doused it with mayo, and put on a good slice of tomato, and maybe some salt and pepper. That's it. Goodness, I could have eaten twenty of those! These would be good on any sandwich, including burgers. You could also make a Caprese salad -the good old slices of mozzarella and tomato with torn basil leaves. Season with salt, pepper, and drizzles of balsamic and tasty olive oil. voila!
2 Slicing Cucumbers. Maybe you can try peeling, seeding, and grating into strained yogurt, adding crushed garlic and lemon juice to make a sort tzatziki. or look up a real recipe!!! Cucumbers are so crunchy and yummy.
1 Bunch of Dragon Carrots (Red Skin, Orange Flesh). Red-skinned carrots. a little twist on the usual carrot. Grate into a salad or sandwich. or just snack. or roast along with some other veggies. or use, along with pancetta, onions, and garlic as the basis of a bolognese sauce.
1 Head of Lettuce. I swear the upcoming plantings look promising . . .
Hi everyone! Nice day today! What lovely air!
Good News for you local honey fanatics: Franklin Honey has delivered a couple cases of honey to be sold at the farmstand. $8 for 1 lb jar and $15 for 2 lb jar.
This could be the freshest honey you have ever tasted. He literally extracted and bottled it this morning!
Franklin Honey has a new facebook page:
Plenty of Cucumbers and Sunflowers again this week! and the flower bouquets Laurene has been putting together are marvelous!
See you soon!
Chris and Christy at White Barn Farm
Hello Tuesday CSA Crew! We hope you are enjoying the transition from early season to mid season veggies. This week marks the first appearance of peppers and eggplant and a slow trickle of tomatoes at the farmstand. Sunflowers galore! The farm is a nice place to be. We appreciate you supporting us so we can keep up this crazy lifestyle!
This week's box:
Yellow Beans. Good job, yellow beans. These are tasty little guys. I tend to eat the funny looking ones as I weight out the bags. They are good raw! But even better roasted or sauteed. or just steamed and served later with a vinaigrette - I think my aunt did that and added feta and torn mint leaves for a really beautiful side dish. You don't want to cook them completely into submission (or maybe you do!). A farm from Small Farm Central offered this idea, Chicken Shawarma with Green Beans and Zucchini. Maybe you can try changing up the color scheme by using yellow beans and yellow squash. Beans are always delicious in Thai curries and soups, too.
2.5 lbs of Yukon Gold Potatoes. I have been loving the potatoes. They are a great way to give some substance to an all-veggie meal, which happens sometimes when you are so busy farming that you have not visited a grocery store. I love making boiled potatoes then chopping them up and tossing with a lemon vinaigrette and chopped beans. My less-dishes approach is to steam or blanch the beans above or in the potato boiling water. Spoon or tong out to a cutting board and chop. Drain the potatoes. Add some olive oil and slivered garlic to the now-empty potato pot (as the taters are sitting in the colander steaming with a lid propped over them). Sautee the beans with the oil and garlic until you can see they've taken on some good flavor, add some basil, Cut the potatoes and throw them in, adding salt, lemon juice, olive oil, and some pats of butter if you like. The next day for lunch, Chris took my potato bean salad and added it to sauteed onions, shredded rotisserie chicken, and added a little tomato and hot sauce to make a wonderful burrito filling. yum.
1 bunch of Chioggia Beets. These pink-skinned beets are candy-striped inside when you slice them. I recommend, as usual, roasting these beets (especially if you have the oven on anyway - just make a little foil pack and put them in on a baking sheet to catch any drips) The stripes blend together after cooking to make a pretty rose colored beet. The nice part is that you will not stain your hands, cutting board, dish towel, tablecloth, etc when peeling them. Roasted beets and goat cheese are a splendid combo. They would be great served on a bed of that softer lighter greeen leaved lettuce in your box today.
2 lbs of uncured yellow onions. When we cure onions we let them sit in a warm dry spot for a few weeks with their tops on in order for their necks to dry closed, preventing the entrance of fungus and bacteria. At that point we will trim off the tops and sell them as storage onions, which should hold for many months - stored under cool dry conditions. These sonions are picked and topped right in the field. Therefore they can be stored in a basket on your counter if you will use them in the next week or two, but they will keep best stored in your refrigerator, as long as they stay very dry. I say, use them! Grill some if you are grilling. Roast some if you are roasting potatoes anyway. Try making some onion rings! The trick is to soak them in buttermilk to tenderize them before breading and frying.
Basil. A handful of basil leaves to add wonderful flavor to any dish. Potato salad with salt, lemon, olive oil and basil is super-simple and quite delicious. You can put basil in a vinaigrette or a mayonnaise or aioli. Basil is great with sauteed squash, on a pizza, and in that ratatouille. Our beds of basil are finally taking hold, so we should have enough for pesto soon enough.
2 Hot Peppers. Ay Ay Ay! Early Jalapeno or Hungarian Hot Wax (yellowish-green). These were actually in a crate next to the sign-in board for you to choose yourself. We figure that way no one is confused about which peppers are hot. Add some spice to your home fries or your green pepper and onions. Or your black bean salad, whatever you are feeling! For less heat, use only the flesh of the peppers, carefully throwing the seeds in the compost. I like to hold the stem so the pepper is kind of standing up on the cutting board and just cut off the sides of the pepper to use and just put the handled seed cluster right into the compost. If you are going to touch the seeds you should wear gloves (or plastic bags in a pinch) or be vigilant about washing your hands well before touching sensitive parts (eyes, face, you know).
2 Summer Squash & 2 Zucchini. With the onions, green pepper, basil and eggplant around, you could make some Ratatouille. The recipe calls for tomato, but you can make a delicious dish without it (we're hoping to have enough tomatoes for the share next week). The serving suggestion of putting it over creamy polenta and serving with parmesan is a simple way to make this a meal.
3 Heads of Lettuce. You can see what hot, dry weather does for the lettuce. These heads are smaller than spring or fall lettuces. But they will make good salads and the crispier greenleaf variety is perfect for burgers and sandwiches.
1 Green Pepper. These are sweet green peppers. Some of you got a green bell, some got a chartreuse/flourescent yellow one named flavorburst, and some got a pointy green one. They all will eventually ripen to red, yellow, or orange; so a green pepper is unripe. That is why green peppers have a kind of bitter "green" flavor. For some reason that feature makes it great when sauteed with onions and put on a sausage in a bun. Diced green pepper on a pizza is good, and some people like them in a green salad.
3 Slicing Cucumbers and 2 Pickling Cucumbers. It has been hot enough out to bring on the chilled soups. This recipe for Cold Cucumber Soup is very nice. It calls for 3 cukes, but I would maybe use the picklers, too, since maybe these slicers are a little smaller.
1 Orient Express Eggplant. The first of the eggplant. This is an Asian Eggplant named Orient Express. It is a nice tender type of eggplant with very small seeds. I've never salted and drained Asian Eggplant before cooking with it as some might do with large Italian eggplants. The easiest way to prepare this veggie is to marinate and grill it, right alongside your halved onions, squash and zucchini, perhaps. You can either whisk together a quick vinaigrette (tsp dijon, fine diced onion or garlic, balsamic vinegar, chopped basil, and olive oil, for example) to throw the veggies into or use a bottled dressing (Italian is always good) or maybe go asian style with some diced garlic, ginger, soy sauce, canola oil, and maybe a squeeze of siracha (hot sauce). You could drizzle with a little toasted sesame oil after grilling for a tasty finishing touch.
At the risk of being annoying with the frequent emails this week, Hello!
It is the most gorgeous, lovely day as I type this wearing a long-sleeve shirt!!!! Hurray for cool air coming in the windows!
Come check out Karl Ziegler's newest batch of pottery that he has made at his home in Norfolk. Karl may only be 20 years old but he is a prodigy. (And an excellent help on the farm!!) We have been presenting potato salads, cole slaw, and green salads in a gorgeous blue bowl that we bought from him last fall. and a mug he gave to me is my absolute favorite for my late night pregnant lady ice cream (it is so cute that it makes me feel modest!).
There's still time to last minute decide to throw on your yoga pants, grab your mat, and do yoga with patty at 9!
In abundance at the farm today: Sunflowers, Cucumbers, and Cabbage. and it is dry enough for us to harvest a few early tomatoes (no guarantee that any will be left by the time you get here!)
Looking forward to seeing you all!
Chris, Christy and the co-pilot!
Hi there gardeners! We have a community plant disease issue: the cause of 2009's complete tomato loss in New England and also the root of the Irish Potato Famine, Phytopthera Infestans, i.e. "Late Blight."
PLEASE PASS THIS ALONG TO ANYONE YOU KNOW WHO IS GROWING TOMATOES
The current drought has been a godsend for the slow-down of the spread of this extremely destructive FUNGUS. Spores are killed by UV radiation and cannot really infect the leaves they land on without some leaf wetness. Now that it has rained, I'm getting scared again. It is very important that everyone with tomato plants cleans up their plants or removes plants completely that are too far gone (on a hot dry day with no leaf wetness). Spores can travel for miles on the wind. They commonly arrive on Thunderstorms. Farms in Medway, Concord, Weston, Natick, and Lincoln all have confirmed cases of Late Blight. We had a Umass Plant Disease Clinic graduate student come take samples from here on Monday. He is culturing them now and will get back to us. But we have already gone through our planting removing all diseased leaves and cutting out plants with lesions on the main stem, just based on my memory of the disease from 2009. He said our potatoes just have potato leafhopper tipburn. Thank goodness. Convincing Chris to flail mow his favorite crop was not going over well.
The only way to save the rest of New England's tomato crop is to remove and destroy infected leaves and plants. DON'T PUT ANY OF THIS PLANT MATERIAL IN YOUR COMPOST OR LEAVE IT IN YOUR GARDEN. Either dig a deep hole and bury them or tie securely in a black plastic trash bag and leave in the sun to fry for a day or two. The good news is that the late blight cannot persist on dead tissue - that's why the black bag, etc. (If you have potatoes with blight the tuber must be destroyed, NOT left in the ground to resprout - that is the most common way the disease continues. Get them all out. Cook and eat. Feed to pigs. Freeze. Bag and send "away" to a landfill).
Best practices for keeping your planting disease free:
Promote rapid drying out of your plants, AIR CIRCULATION. Do all of this on a sunny, DRY, day:
- Remove suckers (the sprouts that grow upward out of a joint above where a leaf connects to the main stem or sometimes come right out of the base of the plant).
- Pull weeds that can harbor dew and moisture.
- Trellis your tomatoes.
- Do not overhead water. If you don't have soaker hoses or drip lines to water just the base of the plant, use a wand at the end of the hose to soak just the soil at the base of the plant. Or a watering can. Do not use a sprinkler on your tomatoes!
- If possible put some mulch between rows. i like Newspaper and/or cardboard with leaves or straw or grass clippings on top. That should keep the weeds down for the rest of the season, plus conserve soil moisture, add organic matter to your soil and create a lovely habitat for earthworms.
- Remove lower leaves. They are not serving the plant anymore, they are just inviting disease to establish. I find if I push up on the lower leaves they snap off nicely. Only touch leaves you are going to throw away.
- Check out the pictures and descriptions in the following two links. if the main stem of your tomato plant has large dark brown lesions, get the whole plant out of there. I had to cut mine to get them out of our trellising system. I used the clippers only for plants I was going to destroy.
PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO READ THIS NOTICE AND LOOK AT THESE PICTURES:
Here is a description of how to manage late blight if you find it in your planting:http://www.longislandhort.cornell.edu/vegpath/late_%20blight_gardeners_2011.pdf
Here is a good set of late blight disease pictures and also some similar diseases that are not late blight: http://www.longislandhort.cornell.edu/vegpath/photos/lateblight_tomato.htm#images
CABBAGE. Do we have anyone dying to make vats of saurkraut? Cases of cabbage are $20. That is a 1 and 1/9 waxed bushel box full of green cabbage. Bargain basement. Go lacto-fermentation! If you would like to order, reply to this email with: 1. your name, 2. phone #, 3. number of cases, 4. whether you would like to pick up at the stand Friday (2-7p) or Saturday (10a-2p).
SUNFLOWERS. $1 each or 6 for $5. So Monet! Find a great vase and display area and come on down to fill it with Sunnies!
YOGA IN THE BARN. Yoga with Patty Saturday mornings at the farm 9am to 10:15a. Bring water and your yoga mat. You are sure to enjoy Patty's relaxing style and wonderfully positive outlook, not to mention her teaching flow and hands-on adjustments (if you like). $12 If you can't make it to Patty's class, try out Wrentham's Humble Warrior yoga studio right in the center of town. Founded by a lovely young couple who are on board with the organic veggies!
HONEY. Just talked to Roger at Franklin Honey. Probably by next weekend we will have the next batch of honey for sale. Franklin Honey is now on Facebook if you want to be friends!
SWEET CORN. yes, we do have our mini corn patch down the hill from the stand (an array of sweet corn, ornamental, and popcorn). We kind of grow it just for fun and hopefully to do a token few ears for our CSA boxes, but each one is sure to have a worm and we've been seeing a deer down there! So where should you buy your locally grown corn? COOK'S VALLEY FARM in West Wrentham. I talked to Nate Cook this morning. Their first picking of corn is trickling in right now and they should have a good amount from this weekend onward. They are a conventional farm, employing IPM (integrated pest management), so not organic. But darn that corn is delicious and picked fresh every day. They've also got blueberries right now. And they are on the lookout for their earliest melons. So get over there! Their farmstand is on West St. If you head from our farmstand towards the outlets on 1A, stay right at Wampum Corner to get onto 121/West St. Go, Go, Go through Sheldonville and take a right onto West St. Go a little ways and the Farm will be on the right. If you come from the other direction, check out Jane & Paul's farm in Norfolk.
Our earliest tomatoes are trickling in and if the blight stays at bay we are hoping for a bountiful tomato season to be in full swing in a couple weeks.
Zucchini Bread! For the big honkers. That's what happens when farmers take Sundays off. Only 50 cents a pound! Shred and bake into a tasty quick bread! If it's too hot to do it now, shred and freeze. You can even use the shredder on your food processor. Those plastic pint containers that olives and stuff come in are exactly 2 cups. Keep 'em frozen for the next time you want to bake! Or for making six loaves for Thanksgiving! Here is a zucchini bread recipe my mom has used ever since she got it from a farmer in Maine in the late seventies. Our friend google is sure to hold another million ideas for shredded zucchini. Darcy, do you share your magical chocolate zucchini bread recipe?
While we are on a local business kick, Have you tried the new Terrace Cafe that just opened in downtown Wrentham, across from the common where Tootsie's was? The owner, Nancy, has been trying to incorporate as much White Barn Farm produce as possible. You can sit outside and have beer and wine and a nice sandwich or salad. The dream of a better Wrentham is coming alive!
Take it easy, everyone! Thank you, as always, for your incredible support! We truly appreciate each one of you!
See you soon!
Farmers Chris, Christy, and the flipping and kicking wonder inside my belly!
Howdy CSA Members!
I want you all to think of the crew, including those who work-for-a-share, who harvested so valiantly in the heat today. Poor Darcy's knees do not love picking the green beans. She just missed her chance to avoid them by being on vacation last week! And here they are, to greet her on a super-super-hot Tuesday morning! Chris and I are so grateful for our strong, brave, uncomplaining crew. Thanks to them we have a share to present to you today!
Just as pink was the new black a few years ago, Squash is the new kale as we move into summer. There it is! Ready for great ideas. Check out the links in last week's email (on the blog if you deleted it).
Cucumbers! Cool, refreshing cukes. Cucumber salad time. How about Chilly Dilly Cukes (I say use whatever herb you have around - mint or basil would probably be quite tasty) or maybe this chilled Cucumber Gazpacho. You may have a little specialty cuke in your box - either "Salt and Pepper," "Lemon," or "Poona Kheera." These all have yellow skins from the start and are delicious when picked at the right size. Some of you with a garden may be familiar with gigundo yellow cukes that started out green but have been on the vine too long, have matured their seeds, and become very bitter. That is not the case with these crunchy refreshing little guys!
Radishes. I forgot to use the seeder that I now use for radishes when we direct seed these. I used the old Earthway seeder, which is a terrific and simple tool, but much less precise (i.e. drops more seeds). The result: small radishes. But they grew nicely all the same, and now you have some tender little radishes to add to your salad or to slice and quick pickle for an authentic touch to Mexican tacos.
Fresh Onions. Roast, Grill, or enjoy diced into a pasta salad, tuna, on a burger, whatever. These tiny o's would be perfect for slow roasted, balsamic glazed onions. Here is a simple recipe for Zucchini with Spring Onions.
3 Heads of Lettuce. Good job, lettuce, withstanding the heat! Hope you are enjoying all of the different varieties we plant - varying colors and textures. We are trying to sync up the lettuce crop plan with weather patterns so that we have the most heat-tolerant lettuces growing at this time. we'll see. If only we could grow turkey-resistant lettuce (they do prefer green over red and romaine or crunchy varieties before all others). But I'm afraid turkeys and humans have similar taste in salad greens.
little bag of Arugula. Tiny black flea beetles have made little pinholes in the leaves, but this spicy arugula is still one tasty item. If you have some leftover steak, try slicing it thin, sprinkling with coarse salt, and putting it on top of arugula just dressed with lemon juice, sea salt, and olive oil. Finish with shaved parmesan (like shaved from a block with a vegetable peeler). molto buono! or chop it into a grain salad. Farro, an ancient strain of wheat, is traditional in Abruzzo, Italy.
Green Beans! Whoopie! You will not see these in the share too often, as they are so time consuming to pick, but enjoy our first picking of beans! The wonderful CSA cookbook, From Asparagus to Zucchini offers this take on green beans - roasted geen beans with pine nuts and parmesan.
Yukon Gold Potatoes. Yum. I'd just boil til fork tender. then cut into pieces, put on a plate, and mash to order with the back of your fork, seasoning with salt, pepper, and butter as you like. Or you can make a delectable potato salad! With some chopped green beans, perhaps? While your kitchen is staying cool and the grill is staying hot - why not give this Grilled potato salad a shot? Of course, this just provides the seed of an idea. Let your inspiration take you away and develop your own signature style using what you've got around for grilling veggies, fresh herbs, marinades, dressings, etc.
Dynamite Nutrient-Packed Red Cabbage! check out this recipe for Sweet and Sour Red Cabbage. You can also thinly slice and coarsely chop into a green salad for some good crunch and flavor. Don't forget the easy and delicious Fish tacos!
Hello Tuesday CSA Members! Thank you for your support, as always. If you have forgotten how to break down your box without ripping it (so it can't be used again): please watch this video. You are all bearing with us and our crazy hectic farm life so well.
This week in the box you found:
1 bunch of White Fresh Onions. Like the red torpedo-type fresh onions in the box last week, these are meant to be enjoyed early, before they cure and develop the papery onion skin you're used to seeing on "normal" onions. Since they have not been cured, they will keep best dry in a plastic bag in the fridge. You can certainly use these anytime you would normally use an onion. They can really be featured by grilling or roasting in halves, for example. Just remove the tops (reserve to use like scallion greens if they look good), peel any dirty outer layers of skin and then just cut in half from top to bottom, leaving the core intact to hold the bugger together. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper or any marinade you choose, then grill or roast. You can also slice these into little rings for a nice addition to a burger or sandwich or even a green salad.
2.5 lbs of New Potatoes. This variety is called Dark Red Norland, but it's the same idea as the familiar Red Bliss potato. These treasures are so tender and lovely that they will cook up really quick. Like the fresh onions, new potatoes have not yet developed a tough skin to get them through storage. When we dunked and sprayed these after harvest, they got pretty clean. I wouldn't bother peeling them any further, Just rinse and maybe scrub any rogue dirt off the outside. I am not normally a huge fan of boiling vegetables, but my favortie way to make potato salad is with these little beauties. Place them whole in a pot of cool salted water, bring to a boil, uncover so they don't boil over, and wait for them to be fork tender. Don't forget about them and let them disintegrate into the water and explode when touched with a fork, but certainly make sure you can easily poke a fork through the largest one in the pot. Drain the water. Then I let them sit either in the colander or in the pot (if you just used the cover to block the taters while you poured off the water) with the cover askew so that they remain hot yet evaporate any excess water. Water doesn't have flavor - the more steam that escapes, the drier the potatoes, the more flavor you can add. The flavoring agents I like to use are: salt, pepper, olive oil, lemon juice, chopped scallions and/or herbs, a little mayo, perhaps a spoon of dijon mustard. The most transcendent batch I ever match had chopped cooked bacon and halved snap peas with scallions and parsley. But be creative! use what you have or what you're inspired by. taste and adjust, especially for salt and pepper.
Pickling and Slicing Cucumbers. The tiny fat little cucumbers are varieties that are selected for picking small and pickling, either whole or in spears or coins. They are crunchy and crispy and sometimes have a little spinier skin. But! They are delicious fresh! you do NOT have to pickle pickling cucumbers. We have several shoppers who love to eat them like an apple (come to think of it, so do I!). You can absolutely slice them and throw them on a salad. Our cucumbers are never sprayed with pesticides or treated with wax for preservation, so the skin is not bad - just some people say it causes burps. so peel 'em or not. One delicious quick, fresh pickle method is to slice some cucumbers into a little jar or bowl, add a pinch of salt and a pinch of sugar, then pour a little seasoned rice wine vinegar on them - you don't have to cover them, just add a little, toss them, then put in the fridge for an hour. They are actually tasty immediately, but if you let them sit in the fridge the cukes release their moisture and make themselves a little brine that covers them right up. If you feel you have too many cukes for putting on top of green salads, consider making a cucumber salad. You can either go the yogurt or sour cream and herb route, or make a simple vinaigrette. For a nice cool lunch salad you can dice some cukes and onion and toss with garbanzo beans, lemon juice, olive oil, and a fresh herb or scallion greens. Are any of you gardener's cherry tomato plants producing ripe fruits yet? I ate my first Sungold today. Halved cherry tomatoes are wonderful with diced cukes, some crumbled feta, basil, balsamic and olive oil.
1 bunch of beets. Hope you are hooked on beets! The Boston Globe recently offered a recipe for Dutch potato and beet salad. Roasted beets are always marvelous. You can grate raw beet onto a salad, too. Or make a beet and carrot shredded salad. Balsamic vinaigrette is a wonderful match for roasted beets (crumbled goat cheese or feta never hurt, and even diced avocado goes great with beets). If you feel like baking, try these beet cupcakes. For a cool, refreshing, and sweet dip/condiment, check out this recipe for Beet and Scallion Raita.
1 Large Green Cabbage. I am afriad some of you may be growing tired of the monstrous cabbages that have appeared in your boxes for weeks on end. Just put it in a plastic bag and push it to the hardest to reach part of the fridge. It will hold for a few weeks when your cabbage appetite has returned. I did come across some nice ideas on the Small Farm Central recipe database: Roast Cabbage with Lemon, Stuffed Cabbage Rolls (recommended for the crock pot), and Homemade Saurkraut in Mason Jars. Just imagine the next grilling/tailgating session, bringing your own homemade kraut to enhance hot dogs or sausages, made with cabbage from your very own farm. Sounds glamorous, doesn't it? Well, don't resist. Embark on a saurkraut project. Go probiotics! If you haven't tried every variation of cole slaw in the past week, now is your chance to try more versions! The Boston Globe recipe section also had this mayo-free Cabbage Slaw recipe.
1 Bunch of Swiss Chard. Summer's version of spinach. Great in a frittata, as a simple side of greens, or tossed with some cannellini beans, bread crumbs and parmesan like in this recipe for Tasty Swiss Chard. If any of your beet greens are salvageable, they can be thrown right in with the chard to bulk up your bunch.
3 Heads of Lettuce. The basis of salads for the week.
1 head of Fennel with the fennel greens. Some sprigs from the tops can be reserved to use as a fresh herb this week. I included fennel in a crudite this weekend. I find slivers of fennel to be quite refreshing - "nature's toothbrush!" I like to say. This recipe for Roasted Chicken and Fennel looks excellent.
Squash Invasion! You should have found a generous poundage of zucchini (green and light green), yellow squash, and some sort of specialty squash in your box. The specialty squash was either a patty pan (yellow spaceship) or a zephyr squash (yellow squash with green tip). Chris made a delicious sautee of onions, summer squash (primarily), and a diced green pepper and Asian eggplant from the first harvest of those two veggies today. The secret ingredients were a generous amount of olive oil and a little bit of curry powder. It tasted great on its own and on a hunk of garlic bread. These veggies are a natural for the grill or roasting. Here are some different ideas: a Gratin of Potato, Squash, and Goat Cheese; Zucchini, Mint, and Yogurt Spread; Chilled Summer Squash and Basil soup; and Grilled Zucchini Ribbon Salad. You can always shred (on a box grater) zucchini and freeze it to use to make zucchini bread later on. The plastic pint containers from the grocery store hold 2 cups perfectly, which is what my favorite zucchini bread recipe calls for.
Good luck creating wonderful meals with the bounty of today at White Barn Farm! Really do check out the Recipe page of our website and search by ingredient. Recipe ideas are really beginning to accumulate. And don't forget our friend, google. If you have a smashing success or a delicious new invention, send me an email!