Tuesday, June 29, 2010

CSA Harvest #5

Good day all! We wanted to include a few images of life at the farm these days.. summer means never a dull moment and it seems if you listen close enough you can hear the plants growing! The picture at the bottom is of a swarm of bees that left the hive and during a tornado of whirling, buzzing honeybees flew about 100 feet before landing on the branches of an apple tree. By nightfall they were shaken back into a new hive with more elbow room and are bringing in nectar like mad!

Also above you can see the early green tomatoes of the Glacier tomato.. today as I took the picture I noticed the first red tomato and interestingly enough on the same day last year (the 29th of June) we also found the first red tomato! Surprising given that this spring has been much colder and wet.

In other farm news we have had many baby birds leaving the nests around the farm. It is great to rest on the hoe for awhile and watch them flutter around a bit wobbly while their mom keeps a close eye on each one. So far there have been tiny baby sparrows, and noisy stellar's jays and then the newest ones fledging have been American robins. They are entertaining to watch as they search out worms and grubs in the soil their head constantly bobbing up and down as they hop down the rows. Loved those little birds until this afternoon when Asinete and I did our nightly strawberry harvest and realized that too many of the best, ripest berries had huge chucks slashed out of them and then we saw the baby robins bobbing innocently away down the aisle. Disturbing and aggravating yes but we were able to harvest enough berries between tonight and a few nights ago to get some to all of you today.. including the baby robins! We are hoping in the next few days a strong wind will carry them farther down the river and that this won't be a problem for long! We try to look at it as our land tax.. hopefully if we are willing to share a bit we can be rewarded by a more plentiful harvest.. let's hope so!

We hope you can all join us for the farm tour coming up this Sat July 17th with one tour at 3pm and another at 5pm. Please rsvp to us via email if you think you can attend and how many you will be with. We will provide juice and snacks and may even bust out the hand cranked ice cream maker (throwing in some ripe berries!)

Thank you and enjoy the newest goodies that this season has brought!

Suzie, Asinete, MA and Violet

Harvest This Week Includes:

Yukon Gold New Potatoes

Snowball Cauliflower or Romanesco Cauliflower

Rainbow Chard

Rainbow Carrots

Snow peas (not much longer we promise!)

Black Seeded Simpson Lettuce

Seascape Strawberries (not a lot this first week but more to come!)

Broccoli (less this week but one more big harvest before the fall crop comes in)

Italian Flat Leaf Parsley (goes great with potatoes see recipes below!)

How to Cook it and Store it:

The Yukon Gold potatoes in your basket are called new potatoes because they were just dug out of the ground today and their skin has not cured. You will notice the skin on these are very thin and some even peel off. Because of the thin skins new potatoes do not store well and are best eaten within 2-3 days. If you need to store longer than this please put in the crisper bin of your fridge. No need to peel these buttery beauties as most of the nutrients in a potato lies right under the skin. kept in a

Garlicky Yukon Gold Potatoes

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 60 minutes

* 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
* Salt and freshly ground pepper
* 2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, large ones quartered small halved.
* 6 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
* 2 Tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Brush a baking sheet with 1 tablespoon of the oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Arrange the gold potatoes on the baking sheet, cut side down, and bake for 45 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown. Transfer the potatoes to a bowl.

Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and cook over moderately low heat, stirring, until crisp and lightly browned; do not let the garlic get too brown or it will be bitter.

Pour the garlic and oil over the potatoes, add the parsley and toss. Season with salt and pepper and serve at once.

Yield: 8 servings

Yukon Gold Potato Gratin


* 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
* 1 lb yukon gold potato
* 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese
* 2 tablespoons sour cream
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 2 garlic cloves, very finely minced
* 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
* 3/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
* 1/3 cup chicken broth or white wine
* 4 fresh thyme sprigs (to garnish)


1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch round or oval baking dish.

2.Slice potatoes 1/8-inch thick and combine thoroughly in a mixing bowl with 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, the sour cream, olive oil, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper.

3. Arrange potatoes in a neat overlapping pattern in the baking dish. Pour chicken broth over potatoes.

4. Bake 35 minutes, until potatoes are nearly-tender and the cheese and potatoes are starting to brown. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake another 10-15 minutes.

5. Garnish with thyme sprigs and enjoy!

Rainbow Chard~ Please keep your chard wither wrapped up in a damp towel in your fridge or in a plastic bag. It does tend to wilt quickly if not wrapped. This chard is chock full of nutrients! Here are some recipe ideas to get your creative juices flowing!

Sauteed Swiss Chard with Parmesan Cheese


* 2 tablespoons butter
* 2 tablespoons olive oil
* 1 tablespoon minced garlic
* 1/2 small red onion, diced
* 1 bunch Swiss chard, stems and center ribs cut out and chopped together, leaves coarsely chopped separately
* 1/2 cup dry white wine
* 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste
* 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
* salt to taste (optional)


1. Melt butter and olive oil together in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in the garlic and onion, and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the chard stems and the white wine. Simmer until the stems begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Stir in the chard leaves, and cook until wilted. Finally, stir in lemon juice and Parmesan cheese; season to taste with salt if needed.

Chard, Sausage and Feta Frittata~


* 12 ounces swiss chard, stems and centers removed
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 cup onion, chopped
* 8 ounces mild Italian sausage, casings removed and broken up
* 8 large eggs
* 1/4 cup heavy cream
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
* 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled


1. Preheat oven to 325°F Spray 8x8x2 baking dish with nonstick spray.

2.Bring large pot of salted water to a boil. Add Swiss chard and cook until just wilted, about 2 minutes. Drain and finely chop. Place in a kitchen towel and squeeze dry, set aside.

3. Heat oil in a large skillet over med-high heat. Add onion and saute until soft, about 4-5 minutes. Add sausage and cook until browned and done, breaking up with a fork; about 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and cool.

4. Whisk eggs, cream, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add chard and sausage mixture, then feta; stir to blend. Transfer mixture to prepared baking dish.

5. Bake until set in center, 45-55 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool for 15-20 minutes. Turn over onto a platter, then flip to so that the frittata is right-side-up. Cut into 20 pieces.

6. NOTE: Can be made 1 day ahead. Place frittata pieces on baking sheet, cover and chill. Rewarm in 325F oven for 10 minutes, or until heated through.


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

CSA Harvest #4~ Sunny with a side of snowpeas!

Happy Summer!! That's right! It seems like we might get a summer after all and the best part is yet to come with the juicy heirloom tomatoes, sweet melons, nutty squash, brilliantly colored peppers, and basil (well those are some of my favorites anyways!) Of course we are still a few weeks behind schedule with the summer crops since several of the things we planted from seed ended up rotting in the cold, wet ground that plagued our Spring. Luckily we should have enough cool weather things to carry us through until then...

We wanted to invite all of you out for our first ever farm tour!! We always have a farm potluck later in the season open to all CSA members.. but this year we wanted to have two events here at the farm so everyone has at least one chance to see where their weekly baskets come from and also a chance to meet others getting weekly baskets. We are scheduling the farm tour for July 17th with two tours one at 3pm and one at 5pm.. We wanted the farm tour to happen week after next but that would put us at 4th of July weekend with many folks taking trips. Don't worry we will remind you all in the next week or so about upcoming farm tour on Saturday July 17th.

We are still busy as ever irrigating, weeding and seeding until the days seem to blur together. We had ordered 4 tons of certified organic fertilizer called Nutri-Rich. It is manufactured in Canby and is made up of composted and pelleted chicken manure with micro nutrients added. To date this season we have gone through two tons of it! In the photos above you can see some of the prime river bottom land that we are fortunate enough to grow on. Behind our yellow lab you will notice some land that is fallow (or bare of any crops). We just planted this area with a cover crop of buckwheat which will be tilled back into the soil when it flowers to enrich the soil and get it ready for the fall crops. At this time of year we are already starting to plan out what crops we will be planting now to harvest in Oct and Nov when many of the summer crops get killed off by frost.

Hooray for strawberries!! The berries will make their debut this week in the full share baskets. Hopefully now that the warm weather is here we can get enough for half share members in the upcoming weeks. Our berries are coming on later because we just planted the bare root plants in March and the plants have needed time to get settled in. So hopefully this means that they will produce longer into summer and early fall!

Enjoy!! Suzie, Asinete, MA & Violet

Harvest This Week Includes:

Snow Peas (they are at their peak now!)

Broccoli (also at its peak!)

Romaine Lettuce (outer leaves can be removed to get to more tender and blanched heart)

Bok Choy (the last of it until fall)

Green Garlic


Romanesco Cauliflower

Strawberries (full shares only this week)

How to Cook it and Store it!


Beets are one of our favorites because of their earthy smell and taste. Now only that but they store for up to 3 months in the crisper of your fridge..bidding their time until you're ready! Don't toss the greens either! They are edible as well. Beets are high in Vitamin A and C and also carotenes. The beet greens are high in Vitamin C, iron and calcium.

To store beets and keep them firm remove greens about 1-2 inches above the beet. Store beets in a plastic bag and put in crisper drawer in fridge. Beet greens should be used asap as they will not keep well. For quick storage keep in plastic bag or damp towel in crisper.

Roasted Beets on a Bed of Beet Greens


* 1 bunch beets with
* greens
* 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
* 2 cloves garlic, minced
* 2 tablespoons chopped onion (optional)
* salt and pepper to taste
* 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar (optional)


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (175 degrees C). Wash the beets thoroughly, leaving the skins on, and remove the greens. Rinse greens, removing any large stems, and set aside. Place the beets in a small baking dish or roasting pan, and toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. If you wish to peel the beets, it is easier to do so once they have been roasted.
2. Cover, and bake for 45 to 60 minutes, or until a knife can slide easily through the largest beet.
3. When the roasted beets are almost done, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and onion, and cook for a minute. Tear the beet greens into 2 to 3 inch pieces, and add them to the skillet. Cook and stir until greens are wilted and tender. Season with salt and pepper. Serve the greens as is, and the roasted beets sliced with either red-wine vinegar, or butter and salt and pepper.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving Calories: 204 | Total Fat: 13.9g | Cholesterol: 0mg

Roasted Beets with Feta

Ingredients (green garlic from your basket can be used in place of shallot)

* 4 beets, trimmed, leaving 1 inch of stems attached
* 1/4 cup minced shallot
* 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
* 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
* 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
* 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
* salt and pepper to taste
* 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Wrap each beet individually in aluminum foil, and place onto a baking sheet.
2. Bake beets in preheated oven until easily pierced with a fork, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Once done, remove from oven, and allow to cool until you can handle them. Peel beets, and cut into 1/4 inch slices.
3. While the beets are roasting, whisk together shallot, parsley, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and red wine vinegar in a bowl until blended; season to taste with salt and pepper, and set aside.
4. To assemble the dish, place the warm, sliced beets onto a serving dish, pour vinaigrette over the beets, and sprinkle with feta cheese before serving.

Beet Greens Recipe

While this recipe calls for discarding the stems, if you want you can use them too if they aren't too woody. Just cut them into 1-inch segments and add them to the onions after the onions have been cooking for a minute.

* 1 pound beet greens
* 1 strip of thick cut bacon, chopped (or a tablespoon of bacon fat)
* 1/4 cup chopped onion
* 1 large garlic clove, minced
* 3/4 cup of water
* 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
* 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
* 1/6 cup of cider vinegar


1 Wash the greens in a sink filled with cold water. Drain greens and wash a second time. Drain greens and cut away any heavy stems. Cut leaves into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.

2 In a large skillet or 3-qt saucepan, cook bacon until lightly browned on medium heat (or heat 1 Tbsp of bacon fat). Add onions, cook over medium heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions soften and start to brown. Stir in garlic. Add water to the hot pan, stirring to loosen any particles from bottom of pan. Stir in sugar and red pepper. Bring mixture to a boil.

3 Add the beet greens, gently toss in the onion mixture so the greens are well coated. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 5-15 minutes until the greens are tender. Stir in vinegar. (For kale or collard greens continue cooking additional 20 to 25 minutes or until desired tenderness.)

Serves 4.

Snow Pea Info!

We know that perhaps we got a little giddy when we planted the pea patch in early Feb! Savor them now for as soon as the heat gets here the peas will die off. Peas should be used immediately. Like corn the sugar in peas in converted to starch as soon as they are picked. If you do need to refrigerate keep in plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge. Your peas can be frozen for later use if you'd like to stretch them longer. To freeze them they must first be blanched in boiling water for 2 mins, then immediately cooled under cold water to stop cooking. Drain well and freeze in freezer zip locks or vacuum sealed bags.
Your snow peas are not only tasty but also so good for you! High in vitamins A,C, K and B's. They are also high in iron, potassium and phosphorous and also high in fiber!

Asian Salad


* 1 (16 ounce) package pasta
* 2 cups broccoli florets
* 1 red bell pepper, chopped
* 1/2 cup diced red onion
* 1 cup snow peas
* 1 cup Asian-style salad dressing
* salt to taste
* ground black pepper to taste
* 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root (optional)
* 1 tablespoon minced garlic (optional)
* 1 tablespoon sesame oil
* 1/2 tablespoon sesame seeds


1. Blanch broccoli in rapidly boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the water. Blanch snow peas for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from water.
2. Cook one pound of pasta in a large pan of boiling water until al dente. Drain, and transfer to a large bowl.
3. Toss pasta with salad dressing. Toss with broccoli, red pepper, red onion, and snow peas, ginger, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight. When serving, sprinkle with sesame oil and sesame seeds.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving Calories: 361 | Total Fat: 20.2g | Cholesterol: 41mg

Moo Goo Gai Pan (a great way to use your peas and bok choy together!)


* 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
* 1/4 pound sliced fresh mushrooms
* 1/4 pound snow peas
* 1 (8 ounce) can sliced water chestnuts, drained
* 1/4 pound sliced bok choy
* salt and black pepper to taste
* 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
* 1 teaspoon minced garlic
* 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
* 3/4 cup skinless, boneless chicken breast meat - thinly sliced
* 1 teaspoon white wine
* 1/4 teaspoon white sugar
* 1/4 cup chicken broth
* 1 tablespoon cornstarch
* 2 tablespoons water


1. Heat 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in a wok or large skillet over high heat. Stir in the mushrooms, snow peas, water chestnuts, and bok choy; season to taste with salt and pepper. Cook and stir until the vegetables are just tender, about 5 minutes. Remove the vegetables from the wok and wipe the wok clean.
2. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil in the wok. Stir in the garlic and ginger; cook a few seconds until the garlic begins to turn golden brown. Stir in the chicken and cook until the chicken is no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add the wine, sugar, and chicken broth; bring to a boil. Dissolve the cornstarch in the water and stir into the simmering sauce. Once the sauce returns to a simmer, stir until thick and clear, about 30 seconds. Return the vegetables to the wok and toss until hot and coated with the sauce.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving Calories: 175 | Total Fat: 8.4g | Cholesterol: 26mg


Yes we got crazy planting the broccoli as well! This week will be the largest harvest of this early spring planted crop. When we sent out our surveys last year almost all of the CSA members responded that they would like to see more broccoli! At an organic farming conference we attended this winter we were saddened to hear that broccoli holds the title of the top two crops that you actually lose money on as a farmer! Why? Simply because they require a fairly long growing time and lots of fertilizer and the reward for your efforts? One large broccoli head if you're lucky! There will be small florets after this week for awhile. Any guess what the other big money loser crop is for a farmer? Tell us what you think at the pick up tomorrow~!

Broccoli is so good for you! When eaten fresh and not overcooked it is loaded with vitamin A,C, calcium, potassium, and iron. Broccoli has also been touted as an anti cancer vegetable due to a special enzyme called sulforaphane. Please use your broccoli promptly as all those nutrients will wilt with the broccoli. Store for a few days in a plastic bag in the crisper portion of fridge. Broccoli can also be blanched in boiling water for storage in freezer. Cut head into florets and slice stems. Blanch for 3-4 mins, rinse in cold water to stop cooking and freeze in freezer bags or vacuum seal.

Raw Broccoli Salad Recipe
(Serves 2)

3 cups of chopped broccoli
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
2 tbs of finely minced cilantro
1 tsp of cumin seeds
1/4 cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
Juice from 1 lemon
1/2 tsp of sea salt


1. Wash and finely chop the broccoli, several florets at a time. Include 1 garlic clove in the chopping. Chop for another minute and then add the second clove. Keep chopping until the broccoli is in tiny pieces.
2. Place the broccoli into a large, non-reactive bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and then mix well with a metal spoon. Cover and let the broccoli sit in the fridge for one hour.
3. Serve with accompanying meal of chicken, seafood or on its own.

Broccoli Salad

5 cups shredded broccoli (shred with food processor)
1/2 - 1 cup red onion
1 cup raw sunflower seeds
1/2 cup raisins

Add all to a bowl.

1 cup raw cashews
3T raw agave nectar (or honey)
2T raw apple cider vinegar
1/4t sea salt
1/4 cup water

Blend the dressing in a *blender (you may want to soak the cashews in water for an hour just to soften them up if your blender is not high speed to make it easier to blend or you can try first in the food processor then the blender). Pour over the broccoli mix and mix well with your hands to really coat it. Enjoy!

Augustine's Favorite Roasted Broccoli

Cut broccoli into long florets, peel and cut stem into strips as well. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place broccoli florets on large cookie sheet and drizzle liberally with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt to taste. Toss broccoli so all evenly coated with oil and salt and place in over. Heat for 10 mins and then toss. Roast another 5 mins or until broccoli is tender and even a bit toasted! YUMMYYYY!!!

Off to bed to pick peas in the early dawn!

Monday, June 14, 2010

CSA Harvest #3

Good day Everyone Happy Summer Solstice (on the 21st) and hooray for three days in a row without rain! woah.. now wait a minute what is this about rain for the CSA harvest and delivery!? Guess we did not have to race to get the pump back in the river today after all!

Have most of you been reading about, looking at stories and images from the oil spill in the gulf? I have and we don't have tv or get the newspaper but we do have internet and NPR on the radio. It's overwhelming and tragic and we ask ourselves "how can I be less dependent of those fuels for my existence?" well guess what? Eating locally is one of the main ways you can do that. In a time when most of the food we eat travels an average of 1,300 miles away you can enjoy the fresh crunch of the snow peas and carrots and know they were grown less that 2o miles away. That is a big step that helps to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.

Many people and maybe most of you seek out organic foods for personal health reasons and that is great. As farmers the driving force for us in growing food using organic methods is for the health of the planet and second for our own personal health. Of course many of us are realizing that the health of both the planet and our bodies are interlinked. So thank you for the sake of your health and the health of the planet to eating locally and organically! Actually we are now certified naturally grown. Certified Naturally Grown (CNG) is a third party certification program. That means someone we did not know came and inspected our fields and reviewed our records and seeds to be sure we don't plant GMO seeds (genetically modified) or seeds that have been treated with chemicals. Also they cheked to be sure we were not using pesticides or herbicides and to see that we use only certified organic fertilizer. We had wanted to become certified organic as we were in Ca. but the cost is fairly prohibitive and we do not sell things wholesale. Since we only sell locally we can explain to folks about how we grow our crops and now we have the certified naturally grown to confirm our commitment to growing food healthy for people and the planet! You can check out more about what Certified Naturally Grown at their website and check out our farm profile there.

We are looking ahead for a future 3rd annual farm tour and potluck day for all CSA members. So stay tuned!

Thank you for eating locally!

Suzie, Asinete, MA & Violet

Harvest This Week Includes:


Snow Peas

Hakurei Turnips

Grandpa's Admire Butterleaf Lettuce (Romaine in full shares) Romaine for all next week!


Bok Choy (aka: Pac Choi)

How to Store it and Eat it!

Bok Choy is a traditional stir fry vegetable from China. The Bok choy growing season is limited to the cooler months of spring and fall. Bok choy is often touted as the garden vegetable highest in calcium. Bok choy is an excellent source of vitamins A, B complex, and vitamin C.

Storage Tip: wrap bok choy in a damp towel or put in a plastic bag and place in the hydrator drawer in the 'fridge. Store for up to 1 week.

Stir Fry Bok Choy

Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

* 4 bunches bok choy (basically, 1 bunch per person)
* 2 slices ginger
* 2 tablespoons soy sauce
* 1 teaspoon sugar, or to taste
* 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
* 1/4 cup water
* A few drops sesame oil
* 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil for stir-frying

Wash the bok choy and drain. Separate the stalks and leaves. Cut the stalk diagonally and cut the leaves across.
Heat wok and add oil. When oil is ready, add ginger and stir-fry briefly, for about 30 seconds, until the ginger is aromatic. Add the bok choy, adding the stalks first, and then the leaves. Stir in the soy sauce, sugar, and salt, and stir-fry on high heat for 1 minute.
Add the water, cover the wok and simmer for about 2 minutes. Stir in the sesame oil and serve. Serves 4.

Bok Choy Salad


* 1 medium head bok choy, diced
* 1 bunch green onions, chopped
* 1 (3 ounce) package ramen noodles
* 1/2 cup blanched slivered almonds
* 2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
* 1/3 cup olive oil
* 3 teaspoons lemon juice


1. Combine bok choy and green onions; cover and chill.
2. Whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice and ramen noodle seasoning packet. Refrigerate until chilled.
3. Break ramen noodles into small pieces; combine with toasted almonds and sesame seeds.
4. Before serving, combine the cabbage mixture and noodle mixture; add dressing and toss to coat.

Snow Peas enjoy the weekly share of snow peas as they are a fleeting spring treat. Once summer arrives the vines will wither. They are strictly a spring treat. Snow peas are full of vitamins A & C.

Snow Peas with Pine Nuts and Mint


2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 pound snow peas, rinsed, dried, tips of the ends cut off, strings removed
1/4 cup pine nuts
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon dark sesame oil
10 large mint leaves, chopped

1 Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium high heat. Add the snow peas, garlic, and pine nuts. Stir to coat with the oil. Cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring. You do not want to overcook the snow peas or they will get limp. They should still be a little bit crunchy.

2 Remove from heat. Stir in the sesame oil and chopped mint leaves. Serve immediately.

Serves 2-3.

Sorry all another late blog entry and I'm falling asleep as I type! For any other recipe ideas for your goodies please try allrecipes.com there are millions of recipes avail!

Monday, June 7, 2010

CSA Harvest #2

Happy Sunshine!! Well it was a sunny day today (Mon eve) as I write this newsletter.. it looks like the rain will have one last hoorah later this week. We will be happy to see it then since we have had to pull our irrigation pumps out of the river due all the rain. The problem now with the warm days is that our loamy soil is on the sandy side and does start to dry our very quickly leaving baby seedlings droopy and stressed for water. As soon as the river goes down we will need to put in the irrigation pump for the second time this year.

We are not the only ones lamenting the weather as many of you may have seen the story in the Sunday paper about other farmers in our area that have been struggling with muddy, flooded fields. But we see the light at the end of the tunnel in next week's weather forecast~ all sunny days!!

We wanted to add some images that show what is going on at the farm these days. You can see our new crop of fat little pink piglets.. we will have to change our name to Pig Lick Farm :) these little cuties are 7 weeks old and will live with us here on the farm until about Thanksgiving and then they will go to feed families. It is a bittersweet thing having animals on the farm. They bring so much life and joy and energy to the land that we work and live on. For us the driving force of raising our own meat is knowing that the animals we eat had a good life here on the farm with us.

In other pictures you will see our wonderful volunteers hard at work packing all of your CSA baskets in our garage/packing shed. Another image of Asinete prepping our wash tub for the veggie dunk. Yes, that is an old bathtub! It has been used for 20 years as a watering trough for a cow.. and then sat empty in our field for 5 years. Don't worry it has been bleached and scrubbed since those cow water trough days!

Right now we are busy on the farm trying to do many things at once; fertilize, weed, plant, harvest and plan what is going to go where 4 months down the line. Crop rotation and planning is a crucial point in CSA farming. Constant planning and planting to be sure there is always a full CSA basket each week. As soon as one crop is finished and harvested the planting bed is tilled, fertilized and tilled again then planted with the next crop. The best planting are the cover crops that we plant to feed the soil. Today we planted buckwheat seeds where the fall crops will be planted. The buckwheat will grow and flower and provide beneficial insects with nectar and habitat for all the baby tree frogs that we have seen hopping all over the fields. A week after the buckwheat flowers it will be tilled in and add nutrients to the soil... the best kind of fertilizer! It is our goal to one day leave this land in better shape then when we found it.. that is probably the driving force for many small, sustainable/organic farmers.

Enjoy these lingering days on spring!

Your farmers~

Suzie, Asinete, MA, Violet and Sally

Today's Harvest Includes:

Green garlic and garlic scapes (unopened garlic flowers)

Grandpa's Admire Heirloom Lettuce

Snow Peas

Green Broccoli OR Romanesco Cauliflower (yellow head)

Italian Flat Leaf Parsley

Mesclun Mix (arugula/tatsoi/mustard)

Rainbow Chard OR Collard Greens

You might be scratching your head looking in your basket and wondering what in the world a garlic scape is. The scape is the unopened flower from a garlic plant. When growing garlic it is a good practice to allow the garlic to produce a scape but it must be popped off before it opens or else the garlic bulbs will never form properly. My favorite way to enjoy scapes is to heat up olive oil and saute the scapes in a skillet until they are wilted and tender. They have a wonderful garlic taste without alot of heat. Here are more scape ideas...

Garlic Scape Ideas:

-You can add sliced scapes to any stir fry recipe.
-Slice and sprinkle over any pasta, or slice and cook them in almost any sauce recipe.
- Great in guacamole and fresh salsa, too.
- Chop & add to softened cream cheese.
-Add chopped fresh scapes when serving a light garlic soup; can also add them to buttered, french bread floated on the soup. -Use them as you would green onions, they're just better.
- Good in salads, on bruschetta, pizza.
- An excellent addition to stocks....and much Asian cuisine.
-Put in Thai chicken/basil/coconut soup.

Garlic Scape Tortilla

1 & 1/2 cups chopped garlic scapes
1/2 cup chopped scallions
1/4 cup hot water
Salt & Pepper
4 large eggs
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

Place garlic and scallions in a 10 inch skillet with 1 tsp. oil, 1/4 cup water and a pinch of salt. Cook covered over med. high heat until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain well. Beat eggs with salt and pepper. Add remaining oil to skillet. When oil is hot, shake skillet to spread greens evenly, add eggs. Cover and cook over med. low heat until top is set [2-3 Minutes].

Mashed Potatoes with Garlic Scapes

2 1/2 lbs. russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1" pieces.
2 Tablespoons butter (can omit this if on a restricted fat diet/lifestyle)
1-2 Tbsp, olive oil
1/4 cup finely chopped scapes
1/4 cup hot milk (or more)

Cook potatoes until very tender. Drain and return to pot. Over medium high heat, melt butter with olive oil in a small skillet. Add scapes and saute about 5 minutes. Add to potatoes and mash. Gradually add milk while stirring. Season with salt and pepper.

Chicken With Garlic Scapes & Capers

2 whole skinless boneless chicken breasts, halved
2 Tbsp. Unsalted butter
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
4 Tbsp. dry white wine
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
4 chopped garlic scapes
1 Tbsp. drained capers

Between sheets of plastic wrap slightly flatten chicken. In a large heavy skillet heat 1Tbsp. of butter and the oil over medium high heat. Saute until cooked through. Season with salt & pepper. Transfer chicken to a platter and keep warm. Pour off fat from skillet and add the remaining butter, the wine, lemon juice, scapes and bring mixture to a boil. Stir in capers and salt & pepper to taste. Spoon sauce over chicken. Serves 4.

Roasted Garlic Scapes
Take the scapes and put them in a lightly oiled roasting pan, top with salt (kosher or sea salt works best but any will do). Put the loaded and covered pan in a hot (425 °F) oven for 30 to 45 minutes or until they are beginning to turn brown. serve as a side or main dish. Tastes like roasted garlic but creamier.

Green Garlic
Green garlic is simply immature garlic and looks like a slightly overgrown scallion or green onion. They are pulled by growers when thinning crops and, increasingly, grown as a crop in their own right. To use, trim off root ends and any tough part of the green leaves. Chop or slice white, light green, and the first few inches of the dark green leaves (as long as they are tender). Use as you would green onions or garlic.

Penne with Ricotta and Green Garlic Sauce
Penne served with a sauce of green garlic, parsley, ricotta, butter and Parmesan cheese.

1 1/2 cups fresh whole-milk ricotta
1/2 cup finely minced green garlic
2 tablespoons minced parsley
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 pound dried penne or fusilli pasta
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus grated Parmesan for the table

Combine the ricotta, green garlic and 1 tablespoon of the parsley in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Just before pasta is done, remove 1/2 cup of the boiling water. Whisk enough of the hot water into the ricotta to make a smooth, creamy sauce.

Drain the pasta and add to the sauce along with the butter. Toss well. Add 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and toss again, adding a little more of the hot water if needed to thin the sauce. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Serve on warm plates, topping each portion with some of the remaining parsley. Yummmm!!

Collard Greens~ full of flavor and nutrients! The leaves can be juiced (use 1/4 green juice to other things such as apple and carrots). Collards can be used much the same way that the rainbow chard is.. our favorite way is always the easiest!

Sauteed Collard Greens
~ adapted from Epicurious

* 3 pound collard greens, leaves halved lengthwise and stems and center ribs discarded
* 2 tablespoons vegetable oil


Stack several collard leaf halves and roll up tightly into a cigar shape. Cut crosswise into very thin slices (no wider than 1/8 inch). Roll and slice remaining leaves in same manner.

Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté collards, tossing with tongs, just until bright green, about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper.

For more recipe ideas for anything in you basket you can check allrecipes.com or epicurious.. there are many recipes avail online.. I would add more but it is now past midnight and tomorrow is harvest day!! Rain or shine!