Monday, October 25, 2010

CSA Harvest #22

Whew, well it is safe to say that one thing we did not spend our weekend doing was irrigating the fields! The crops have all had a refreshing drink and the 500 foot radius around our pigs has been washed clean of all the dust those pigs like to raise.
The combination of heavy rain and heavy wind can often wreak havoc on the crops and when we went out to view the storm aftermath this morning we noticed several of our fall planted broccoli's and cauliflowers had blown over. The plants are still rooted though and there is no fear of them drying out. Today was spent pulling one of the pumps out of the river since the rainfall has caused the river to rise up quite a few feet. We didn't want the pump to be underwater (this has already happened last season)and a trip to Popeye the pump mechanic is not an expense we need again.
We still have one more pump in the river, higher up than the pump we pulled out today. At this point in the season the pump will be obsolete as the rains look like they may be here to stay.

There is still a lot of farm clean up to be done since we have (luckily!!) not had a frost yet (although we are getting our first frost advisory tonight). Last year our first frost happened October 7th. I remember clearly Asinete and I out in the fields trying to pick and harvest every green, pink, reddish tomato we could find. Green tomatoes will ripen just fine off of the vine. We have over 600 tomato vines planted including the t-post stakes and bailing twine we use to string them up. Tomato vine clean-up is a major undertaking at Big Lick Farm. Also this year we had an early blight hit our tomatoes in the spring (remember how cold and wet it was all the way though June?) So that blight lives in the foliage of the tomato vines now. This means we will need to haul all of the vines to the dump. Usually we compost much of our crop residues or else we just till them back into the earth where they break down. When disease hits though we need to take more sanitary measures and get rid of all the plants so we don't have the same problem next season. Also we need to look for more varieties of tomatoes that are more blight resistant. We really do keep learning each season!

Please look for your surveys this week that we will send by email. 10 questions that help us greatly in planning for the next season and getting the insight we need to keep you all happy! Also for those of you wishing to be with us next year for the 2011 CSA season we will be emailing each of you after the New Year to get email confirmations that you would like to be with us again. After the first of the new year CSA deposits and payments are very welcome so we can have capital to start the 2011 season strong once again (costs of seeds and fertilizers are high. We do have limited spots and quite a few new members on a waiting list. All of our returning members will have first priority though! :) We will remind you more about this before the last CSA basket goes out this year!

Be well and enjoy the crisp, sweet crunch of fall!

Suzie, Asinete, M.A., Violet and Sally

Harvest This Week Includes:

Broccoli- hooray! the first of the fall broccoli!


Concord Grapes- it's true~ they even taste purple!


Head Lettuce

Sweet Onion

Winterbor Kale (did you try the kale chips recipe yet?)

Winter Squash~ some of you will get spaghetti squash~ large football shaped yellow squash. Others of you will get the small, delicate delicata. Recipe ideas for both below.

We are also hoping for tentative harvest of sweet peppers, cukes, tomatoes, and summer squash.. the availability of these depending on if we get a hard frost tonight or not...

Recipe Ideas for your fall bounty

Concord Grapes~ rich in vitamin C and very high levels of antioxidants make this a very healthy, tasty treat! They seem to taste best when chilled. Keep in a bowl in the fridge and enjoy!

Spaghetti Squash~ if you got the single, large pale yellow squash in your basket congratulations! That is a spaghetti squash! We were requested to grow this squash by one of our awesome volunteers (Violet) who is allergic to all things wheat. She told us spaghetti squash made a delicious, healthy pasta substitute!
Here are some ideas on how to prepare it in some tasty meals!

A dieter's dream, a four-ounce serving of spaghetti squash has only 37 calories.

The average four-pound spaghetti squash will yield about five cups.

Spaghetti Squash can be stored at room temperature for about a month. After cutting, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate up to 2 days. Spaghetti squash also freezes well. Pack cooked squash into freezer bags, seal, label and freeze. Partially thaw before re-using, then steam until tender but still firm, about 5 minutes.

How To Cook Spaghetti Squash

* Bake It -- Pierce the whole shell several times with a large fork or skewer and place in baking dish. Cook squash in preheated 375?F oven approximately 1 hour or until flesh is tender.

* Boil It -- Heat a pot of water large enough to hold the whole squash. When the water is boiling, drop in the squash and cook for 20 to 30 minutes, depending on its size. When a fork goes easily into the flesh, the squash is done.

* Microwave It -- Cut squash in half lengthwise; remove seeds. Place squash cut sides up in a microwave dish with 1/4 cup water. Cover with plastic wrap and cook on high for 10 to 12 minutes, depending on size of squash. Add more cooking time if necessary. Let stand covered, for 5 minutes. With fork "comb" out the strands.

* Slow Cooker or Crock-Pot - Choose a smaller spaghetti squash (unless you have an extra large slow cooker) so that it will fit. Add 2 cups of water to slow cooker. Pierce the whole shell several times with a large fork or skewer, add to Crock Pot, cover and cook on low for 8 to 9 hours.

Once the squash is cooked, let it cool for 10 to 20 minutes so it will be easier to handle, before cutting in half (if it wasn't already) and removing the seeds. Pull a fork lengthwise through the flesh to separate it into long strands.

Recipe ideas for spaghetti squash once it is cooked:

Spaghetti Squash Alfredo


You can make this rich Alfredo sauce lower in fat by using reduced fat sour cream and low fat cheese, making this dish suitable for both low fat or low carb dieters can appreciate.

1 medium spaghetti squash, cooked by your favorite method and separated into strands
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
In a medium-sized saucepan, combine the all ingredients except spaghetti squash over medium-low heat and whisk until smooth and creamy, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Add the spaghetti squash strands to the sauce and stir until thoroughly mixed and heated through. Serve immediately.

Buttered Spaghetti Squash


* 1 medium spaghetti squash (2-1/2 to 3 pounds)
* 1/2 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese
* 3 tablespoons butter or margarine, cut up
* 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil, oregano, or parsley
* 1/4 teaspoon salt


1. Halve squash lengthwise; remove and discard seeds. Place squash halves, cut side down, in a large baking dish. Using a fork, prick the skin all over. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 30 to 40 minutes or until tender.
2. Remove the squash pulp from shell (see photo, directional). Toss squash pulp with 1/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese, the butter, basil, and salt. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.
3. Makes 6 servings
4. Spaghetti Squash with Marinara Sauce: Bake spaghetti squash as directed in step 1. Omit Parmesan cheese, butter, basil, and salt. For marinara sauce, in a medium saucepan cook 1/4 cup chopped onion and 2 cloves minced garlic in 1 tablespoon olive oil or cooking oil. Stir in one 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained; 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning, crushed; 1/8 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed; 1/4 teaspoon salt; and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, uncovered, for 10 to 15 minutes or until desired consistency, stirring often. Remove the squash pulp from shell. Spoon sauce over squash pulp. If desired, sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Per 3/4 cup squash with 1/4 cup sauce: 84 cal., 3 g total fat (0 g sat. fat), 0 mg chol., 233 mg sodium, 14 g carbo., 0 g fiber, 1 g pro. Daily Values: 1% vit. A, 19% vit. C, 7% calcium, 5% iron. Exchanges: 1/2 Vegetable, 1/2 Starch, 1/2 Fat

recipe source
Better Homes and Gardens

There are tons of spaghetti squash recipes online as well.. find the one that sounds best to you!

Delicata Squash... this winter squash is appropriately named. They are smaller squash, a perfect meal for two! If you did not get delicata this week.. no worries, there will be plenty for everyone later.

Delicata Delish

Prep Time:
15 Min
Cook Time:
30 Min
Ready In:
45 Min

Yield 4 servings


* 1 large delicata squash, halved lengthwise and seeded
* 3 tablespoons butter, divided
* salt and pepper to taste
* 1 cup uncooked quinoa
* 2 cups water
* 2 shallots, chopped
* 1 clove garlic, minced
* 1/3 cup pine nuts


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. Arrange the squash halves cut side up in a baking dish. Fill dish with about 1/4 inch water. Place 1 tablespoon butter on each half, and season halves with salt and pepper. Cover dish, and bake squash 30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until very tender.
3. Place quinoa in a pot with 2 cups water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 15 minutes.
4. Melt the remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in shallots and garlic, and cook until tender. Stir in pine nuts, and cook until golden. Gently mix into the pot with the cooked quinoa.
5. Cut the squash halves in half, and fill each quarter with the quinoa mixture. Serve each stuffed squash quarter on a bed of the remaining quinoa mixture.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving Calories: 379 | Total Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 23mg

Squash with Herbs


2 medium winter squash (about 2 pounds)
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup fresh sage, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1 1/2 cups apple cider or juice
1 cup water
2 teaspoons wine or herb vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
freshly ground pepper to taste

If using delicata squash, peel it with a vegetable peeler, then cut it lengthwise in half, and scrape out the seeds. Cut each piece in half again lengthwise, then crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Other squash should be peeled, seeded, cut into 1x 1/2 inch pieces. Melt the butter in a large skillet over low heat. Add the sage and rosemary and cook until the butter just begins to turn color-3to5minutes.Add the squash to the skillet, then the apple cider, water, vinegar, and salt. Cook stirring occasionally, over medium heat at an even boil until the cider has boiled down to a glaze and the squash is tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Taste and season with pepper and additional salt if needed.

Spicy Squash Soup


2 1/2 tsp. Cajun seasoning

1 1/2 lb. Delicata or other winter squash

2-3 tsp. fresh ginger, peeled and minced

1 liter milk

2 cup sweet onion, diced

1 cup celery, diced

2 tbsp. minced garlic

4 tsp. olive oil

10 oz. frozen corn kernels

10 oz. frozen green beans

3/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped

Trim edges of squash, cut into four pieces, remove seeds. Steam 12-15 minutes until soft. Scrape the squash from the skin into a blender, add ginger and 2 1/2 cups milk; purée. Sauté onion, celery and garlic in 3 tsp. olive oil until onions are soft. Reduce heat to low, stir in Cajun spice mix. Stir for 30 seconds, add squash purée and remaining milk. Bring to a boil, simmer for 15 minutes. Add corn and green beans and continue to simmer. Stir in basil. Season with salt to taste.

Baked Delicata Squash


1 delicata squash

1-2 Tbsp. butter

salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cut off the ends of squash, cut in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds. Leaving the skins on, cut the squash into 1/2-inch wide lengths. Place these on a baking sheet, dot with butter, and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast at 375 degree F. oven until soft. This is the basic recipe. You can add herbs, spices or honey to it if you wish.

Delicata Squash Puree


One 2-lb. Delicata squash

1 lb. potatoes, peeled and quartered

1 cup heavy cream or half and half

2 tbsp. butter or olive oil

1/4 c. finely chopped fresh chives

salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Split the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Peel the outer skin and cut the squash into 3-inch pieces. Place squash and potatoes in a large saucepan and fill with water and 1/2 tsp. salt. Bring to a boil and cook until both the squash and potatoes are fork-tender (30-40 minutes). Drain liquid (reserving about 1 cup) and add in cream and butter. Using a potato masher , mix well. Add chives and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add cooking liquid if you want it a bit thinner consistency.


Monday, October 18, 2010

CSA Harvest #21.. with a thank you to our garlic planting helpers! 2011 garlic in the ground!

Well we did it! With the help of 5 CSA members that came out to volunteer their precious Sunday afternoon we were able to get all of the garlic in for next year. We had planned on it taking two Sunday afternoons but we were fueled on salsa, strawberries and dark chocolate. Thank you to each of you who joined us. If you missed this opportunity fear not as next season there will be plenty of projects to go around!

This week we delve deeper into the fall crops with parsnips making their debut as well as tender salad greens. If you are wondering what the orange flecks are in your salad mix those are calendula petals.. edible and they make a beautiful salad as well. We also planted more fennel as a fall crop and the first harvest is ready. If you tried it in the summer and were not thrilled please give it another shot. The combination of cooler growing weather and harvesting it while it is smaller will make it very tender. Parsnips and fennel bulb complement each other in several recipes that we posted below.

The carrots this week are just right, heavy, sweet and crisp. I am crunching on one now as I type. As CSA members you are given the opportunity to eat things in season. A few weeks ago a man came by farmers market and was looking around for locally grown bananas.... in all fairness he was from San Diego where bananas may very well grow side by side with carrots. I had to remind him that he was in Oregon which isn't known for its tropical fruit growing. Our region does produce hundreds of other tasty fruits, vegetables and nuts and to fully appreciate them we must remember why it is so important to eat locally and in season.

When you buy direct from local farmers, your dollars stay within your community, and strengthen the local economy. More than 90¢ of every dollar you spend goes to the farmer, thus preserving farming as a livelihood and farmland.

This is important because as mergers in the food industry have increased, the portion of your food dollar paid to farmers has decreased. Vegetable farmers earn only 21¢ of your dollar; the other 79¢ goes to pay for marketing, distribution, and other costs.

There are other good reasons to eat more local, seasonal food:

*to reduce the energy (and associated CO2 emissions) needed to grow and transport the food we eat

*to avoid paying a premium for food that is scarcer or has travelled a long way (the average food item consumed in the USA has traveled at least 1,500 miles)

*to support the local economy (local farmers keeps .90 cents of every dollar you give them. Most farmers that do not sell directly to the public only get .21 cents of your dollar)

*to reconnect with nature's cycles and the passing of time

*seasonal food is fresher and so tends to be tastier and more nutritious

* This info taken from

Enjoy fall's bounty!

Suzie, Asinete, M.A., Violet and Sally

Harvest This Week Includes:

Salad Mix


Fennel (recipes below)

Sweet onions

Parsnips (recipe ideas below)


Daikon radish (if you enjoy a milder radish peel before eating)


Peppers (spicy and sweet varieties)

How to store it and cook it!

Parsnips are a new crop for Big Lick Farm to grow as they were requested by several folks last year. No other crop we grow takes as long to mature as a parsnip does. We planted these by seed in the cold, rainy days of March and they are just now mature enough to begin harvesting. The roots are a bear to wash. We took our time with these, scrubbing each root individually with a brush. Hands down parsnips are the most time consuming crop to wash that we grow but the taste makes up for the effort! Don't let that gnarled root scare you off! Just follow some of our tips and recipe ideas below and you too will be a parsnip fan.

Store parsnips chilled and loosely wrapped in plastic. Fresh parsnips will last a week or two properly stored.
Cooking With Parsnips
Parsnips have a great, distinctly nutty flavor. When cooked until tender they also have a lovely, starchy texture that works beautifully roasted or added to soups and stews. Parsnips pair particularly well with other root vegetables like potatoes, carrots, and turnips. Unlike carrots they do not taste good raw!

Roasted Winter Vegetables

Preheat the oven to 400 F. Use in any combination and cut into similar sized chunks: parsnips (peeled), small fennel heads, carrots (peeled if you like), chunks of daikon radish (great cooked), beets and/or potatoes. Toss with enough cooking oil to coat the vegetables and season with salt and pepper. Roast in a large glass or ceramic baking dish, uncovered, until browned and tender, 20 to 30 or even 40 or 50 minutes. Stir every 10-15 minutes so that they cook and brown evenly.

Aromatic Parsnips and Carrots

cook time: 50 mins

servings: 10

A fragrant combination of herb seasonings and citrus are infused into fresh parsnips and carrots to create an easy stove top side dish or meatless entree. Prepare this vegetable side dish ahead; chill up to 24 hours, then microwave, stir, and serve.


* 1-1/2 lb. small parsnips, peeled and halved lengthwise
* 1-1/2 lb. small carrots, peeled and halved lengthwise
* 3 Tbsp. olive oil
* 3/4 tsp. fennel seeds, crushed
* 1/2 tsp. ground coriander (optional)
* 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
* 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
* 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
* 1 tsp. finely shredded lemon peel
* 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
* 1/2 tsp. salt
* 1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
* 1 Tbsp. Olive oil


1. Cut any long parsnips and carrots in half crosswise. In a very large skillet, cook parsnips, covered, in small amount of boiling salted water for 2 minutes. Add carrots; return to boiling. Cook for 4 minutes more. Drain; set aside. Carefully wipe skillet dry.
2. Heat the 3 tablespoons oil in same skillet over medium heat. Add fennel seeds, coriander, and cinnamon. Cook about 1 minute or until fragrant, stirring occasionally. Add parsnips, carrots, and garlic. Cook 10 to 12 minutes or until vegetables are tender, turning occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in cilantro, lemon peel and juice, salt, and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Makes 10 to 12 servings.
3. Make-Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 2. Transfer to 2-1/2- or 3-quart microwave-safe casserole. Cover; refrigerate up to 24 hours. To serve, microcook, covered with lid or vented plastic wrap, on high (100% power) for 7 to 8 minutes, stirring once. Serve as above.

recipe source
Better Homes and Gardens

Fennel and Parsnip Puree

yield: Makes 2 servings
Can be prepared in 45 minutes or less.

* 2 large parsnips (about 1/2 pound), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
* 1 small fennel bulb (sometimes called anise), stalks trimmed flush with bulb and bulb chopped (about 1 cup)
* 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter


In a saucepan cover parsnips and fennel with salted water and boil, covered, 15 to 20 minutes, or until very tender. Drain vegetables well in a large sieve. In a food processor purée hot vegetables with butter and salt and pepper to taste.

Honeyed Parsnips and Carrots with Rosemary

Serves 8.

To add richness, sauté three ounces sliced pancetta until crisp; crumble over before serving.


* 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
* 1 pound carrots (about 4 large), peeled, cut into 3x1/4x1/4-inch sticks
* 1 pound large parsnips, peeled, halved lengthwise, cored, cut into 3x1/4x1/4-inch sticks
* Coarse kosher salt
* 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
* 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
* 1 1/2 tablespoons honey (such as heather, chestnut, or wildflower)

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add carrots and parsnips. Sprinkle with coarse kosher salt and pepper. Sauté until vegetables are beginning to brown at edges, about 12 minutes. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.
Add butter, rosemary, and honey to vegetables. Toss over medium heat until heated through and vegetables are glazed, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with more salt and pepper, if desired.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

CSA Harvest #20

Good day everyone. We were hoping to post some pictures of last Thursday's event at the farm when two 4th grade classes from Glide came for a visit. Alas the pictures don't want to seem to load so I will stick to the 1,000 words to describe each missing picture! We had kids, teachers, parents, and even the bus driver and Principal visiting. A wonderful time was had by everyone. When the students got here we broke into 4 groups. One group was working in the greenhouse sifting compost, planting their own pots with lettuce and spinach and then getting a close look at the 6 honeybee hives that are on the farm. Thank you CSA member Elee Hadley for coming to the rescue to lead this group! Asinete took one group down into the field and they helped him pull out old cucumber vines, pull up weed cloth and then harvest tomatoes for salsa making. The kids in Asinete's group then came up into our garage/packing shed and Violet taught the kids how to properly cut tomatoes and make salsa. The other group worked with my Mom to cut the tops off of our storage onions and put them in mesh bags. Also this group worked on breaking up heads of garlic and separating the heads into individual cloves to get ready to plant in the upcoming days. In between the clove breaking and onion cutting my Mom gave an impromptu geography and cultural lesson about Asinete's homeland of Kiribati. It was funny to see the kids all running up to Asinete and saying Mauri! The last group was with me for the farm tour where students, tasted, smelled and traversed their way through the row crops answering trick questions like "what is this unopened green flower called that we eat?" many of the kids knew it was broccoli. Then the farm tour kids ended down in the peach orchard and helped me to spread cover crop seed between the peach trees. Wonderful to have all that energy and helping hands. Every thirty minutes the groups would switch so all the kids got a chance to do the 4 different events.
The field trip was made possible in large part from Wildlife Safari. Wildlife Safari had received grant funds to help get school kids involved in local, conservation work. If you would like to encourage your child's class to come out for a visit we would be happy to host more students. Probably looking toward next Spring at this point since weather may turn soon.

In other news life on the farm is all about clean up this time of year. Many of the rows we covered with weed barrier cloth. The cloth is held into the soil with metal clips so these are all pulled out, weed cloth is rolled up (150 foot rolls) and then stored up in the shed for next season. Also drip tape for irrigating certain crops needs to be rolled up carefully on a spool and put away for next season. Our main clean up will come after our first frost which will kill off many of the things still growing (peppers, basil, cucumbers, squash).

Also at this point in the season we have tried to plan out what each harvest will include now that we have a count of what's available out in the field for the remaining 6 weeks. We are keeping our fingers and toes crossed that all of our fall crops will mature in time. A lot can happen in 6 weeks!

Happy Eating!!

Suzie, Asinete, M.A., Violet & Sally

Harvest This Week Includes:

Leeks! (we've been waiting for these babies all season!) recipe ideas below!

Rainbow Chard (recipe ideas below)

Luscious Sweet Corn blowout! ~ alot and the last of it for 2010!

Green Slicing Cucumbers



Peppers (sweet and hot) The hotter ones are thinner.. when in doubt taste a tiny sliver)


Winter Squash (finally!) every other week from here on out Recipe ideas below..

Daikon Radish (recipes below)

Raspberries (on rotation)

How to Store it and Eat it!

If your desire for the Big Lick strawberries is waning the berries freeze really well. Cut off stems, rinse and then freeze on cookie sheets so that berries don't freeze in one big clump. We use these in smoothies and also heated up and put on pancakes. Once they are frozen they are soft and lose their texture.

The raspberries you may have all gotten by now are a fall bearing variety called Autumn Bliss. Raspberries are very delicate and need to be eaten asap. Store in your fridge for up to 2 days.

Sweet Corn preservation: depending on how much sweet corn you get in your basket you may want to save some for later. Here are some ideas to help you.

On the cob doesn't lend itself to freezing. We freeze corn every year, it is great!
Husk the corn. Fill huge pot with water (enough to hold corn)
bring water to a full boil
put corn in and wait to start boiling again
boil for about 8-10 min
pull from water and immediately put in cold water
when corn is cool
cut off cob with sharp knife
bag in zip lock and freeze
Use by next summer when fresh corn in avail again.

Hooray for Leeks!! Leeks are in the Allium family like onions and garlic. They taste like a very mild onion. Anywhere you would use onion you can add leek chopped up. It stores well wrapped loosely in a plastic bag and put in the crisper drawer of fridge.

Lemony Risotto
from Almost Vegetarian by Diana Shaw

serves 4-6

1 lemon (or 2 small)
3 cups broth: vegetable or chicken
1 large leek, white & green part, cleaned and chopped
1 bay leaf
1 T butter, unsalted
2 shallots, minced
1 T chopped parsley
1 cup arborio rice
2 T white wine
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese

Halve and juice the lemon and remove the zest with a vegetable peeler. Leave half the zest in strips and mince the rest. Set aside the juice and the minced zest.

Place the strips of zest in a saucepan with the broth, leek, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over med-high heat, then cover and simmer gently over low heat for 30 minutes.

Stain the broth through a sieve, discard the leek and bay leaf, and pour it back into the saucepan. Cover and bring it back to a gentle simmer over low heat.

Meanwhile, in a separate saucepan melt the butter. Saute the shallots, parsley, and minced lemon zest over med-low heat until the shallots are soft, about 10 minutes. Add the rice and stir until it’s just about evaporated, about 3 minutes. Add the white wine and lemon juice, turn up the heat, and stir until it’s just about evaporated, about 2 minutes. Lower the heat.

Using a ladle, add about 1 C hot broth. Stir constantly over med heat until the broth has been absorbed. Add another ladle full of broth and keep stirring until it’s been absorbed.

Continue the process, adding broth a half cupful at a time and stirring in this way, until the kernels are plump and no longer chalk white in the center. This should take 25 to 30 minutes altogether. The rice is almost done when the kernels are still separate but starting to bind and there are pools of broth on the surface. It’s done when the liquid has been absorbed, and the kernels are bound in what looks like very ricey, yet somewhat creamy, rice pudding.

When the risotto is nearly done, stir in 2 T more broth, along with the Parmesan cheese, and stir well until all the liquid has been absorbed, about 3-4 minutes. \

Sausage-Leek Soup
serves 6

1/2 pound smoked sausage
1/4 olive oil or butter
3 cups cleaned, chopped leeks
3 tablespoons chopped herbal celery or parsley
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup milk or half and half
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
S & P to taste

Slice or cut the sausage into thin slices. Heat oil in a large saucepan on medium heat. Add the sausage, heat and stir for 3-4 minutes add the chopped leeks, heat and stir for 5 minutes. Add the celery/parsley, stir add the chicken broth bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat and puree with a hand blender or in a food processor. Return to the pot and place over a low flame; stir in milk and gradually stir in the grated cheese. Season to taste with S & P and serve hot.

Daikon Radish.. if you don't love the heat of normal radishes try these! Daikon Radish (Raphanus sativus subsp. longipinnatus) is an everyday component of Asian cuisine. In fact, it is the most widely grown vegetable in Japan. You’ll find it with your meal at almost any Japanese restaurant. It can be prepared almost anyway you like, including raw, fried, grilled, boiled. Not only does it taste great, but Daikon is also good for you. It is very low in calories, helps in digestion and is a a good source of vitamin C, phosphorus and potassium. There is even some evidence that it helps fight cancer.

Daikon Radish Miso Soup
(Miso is a paste that is made from fermented soybeans). It is a superfood and has been proven to reduce chances of breast cancer in women. Not only that it tastes wonderful too! We get our miso paste at Sherm's in their refrigerated section in health food isle but any store should have it! We use the yellow miso since the taste is so mild.


1 Qt. water
8 Tbsp. miso paste
1/2 cup chopped Daikon radish
tofu, chopped into small cubes
2 strands of chopped green onions

Add Daikon radish to slow boiling water, let cook for another 10 minutes or until soft. You can cut the Daikon anyway you like but if you slice it relatively thin (1/4 inch) and then cut in half so that they are half-moon shaped, it will cook faster.

Add miso paste. The best way is to take a small amount of the soup in a small bowl and mix the miso paste in there until it is evenly distributed, then pour the soup (with miso) back into the soup pot.

Remove the soup from heat immediately after adding the miso paste.

Add the tofu and green onions and serve!

Makes around 6 servings.

Pork Bone and Daikon Radish Soup


1 lb pork bones or pork ribs
1 lb Daikon radish
1/2 leek sliced thinly and/or cilantro
sliced fresh ginger (about 2 inches of a regular size ginger)

Boil pork bones for approximately 5 minutes. Remove and discard water. This gets rid of the scum that floats to the top.
Add ginger and pork bones to 4 cups (or enough to cover all the ingredients) of fresh boiling water for 10 minutes then reduce to a low boil and cook for at least 90 minutes.

Chop Daikon radish. Slice the radish into 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick circles and then chop them into quarters.

Add Daikon and thin slices of leek to soup and let cook for 20 minutes.

Add chopped green onions or cilantro, salt to taste.

Makes 4 servings.

You do not need to follow just these two recipes.. Daikon is wonderful added to stir fry's and freshly cut up in salads.

Rainbow Chard Chard like the kale we have been putting in your baskets in chock full of all sorts of good vitamins and minerals. Chard keeps best in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge.

Seared Rainbow Chard with Leeks

Gourmet | August 2000

yield: Makes 8 servings

active time: 25 minutes

total time: 25 minutes

* 1 bunch rainbow chard
* 1.5 tablespoons unsalted butter
* 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
* 1 large leek (white and pale green parts only), halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
* 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt


Cut stems from chard (if leaves are large, cut out coarse portions of rib), then cut stems crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Stack chard leaves and roll into cylinders. Cut cylinders crosswise to make 1-inch-thick strips of leaves.

Heat butter and oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until foam subsides, then sauté chard stems and leeks with sea salt and pepper to taste, stirring occasionally, until slightly soft, 3 to 5 minutes.

Add chard leaves and continue to sauté, stirring frequently, until wilted. (If greens begin to brown before they wilt, sprinkle with a few drops of water.)

Swiss Chard Tian
from A Complete Menu Cookbook for All Occasions by Brother Victor-Antoine d’Avila-Latourrette 4-6 servings

1 bunch rainbow chard
Olive oil, as needed
1 leek or 1 onion, chopped (if using a leek, make sure it’s cleaned, and only use the white and light green parts)
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 eggs
S and P to taste
4 teaspoons water
Bread Crumbs, as needed

1. Chop the chard, both leaves and stems, and then boil the chard for about 20 minutes (yikes, I think I would do 5-10 in my kitchen-julia) in lightly salted water. Drain the chard and set it aside.

2. Preheat the oven to 350degrees. Pour some olive oil into a large skillet. Add the onion and saute lightly over low-medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic, and saute for another minute. Add the Swiss chard and continue sauteing for 2-3 minutes more, blending the ingredients well. Beat the eggs in a deep bowl, add the salt, pepper, and water. Mix well.

4. Butter thoroughly a long, ovenproof dish. Place the chard mixture in it and spread evenly. Pour the egg mixture on the top and also spread evenly. Sprinkle some bread crumbs over the top surface. Place the dish in the oven for about 25-30 minutes. Serve hot.

Winter Squash Storageinter : store in a cool, dry place: nearly anywhere in your kitchen or pantry should work. If the winter squash doesn't have nicks/fresh gashes it should last for months. Winter squash is a powerhouse of vitamins and beta carotene!

In case you've never tried to cook winter squash, it couldn't be simpler: Cut in half with a big sharp knife. Remove seeds. (If you've ever carved a pumpkin, these two steps should be very familiar.) Put in a baking pan (use glass, metal or ceramic would also work) cut side down, with a little water in the pan. Or rub the cut side with a little oil first. Bake in a medium oven (325, or 350, or 400, etc.) until it's easily pierced with a fork. Remove, and eat. Possible toppings: many like maple syrup, and/or salt and pepper. You can also add cut, seeded halves of winter squash to the crockpot with some water, and let it cook that way for a few hours. This method works especially well when all you want is the cooked flesh to puree for a soup or other dish.

Another winter squash/pumpkin preparations:

cut up pieces (large ones) already seeded into a crock pot for 2 or so hours on high. When a fork can easily pierce the squash/pumpkin pieces, remove it and scrape the flesh into a food processor and whirl a bit. Then freeze in 1 and 2 cup increments. Soup and pie are obvious and delicious choices, you can also put 1 cup of this puree into nearly every batch of muffins, waffles, cookies, pancakes, biscuits etc. that you make. Just take an existing recipe and add a cup of squash puree.

Curried Winter Squash

* 3 cups cooked, mashed winter squash
* 1 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
* 2 tablespoons butter or trans fat-free margarine
* 2 tablespoons maple syrup
* 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
* 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
* 3 tablespoons sweetened coconut flakes, toasted (optional)


1. In a medium bowl, combine first six ingredients. Cook until warmed through and blend in coconut at end.

Squash Cookies

Original Recipe Yield 5 dozen


* 1/2 cup butter, softened
* 3/4 cup white sugar
* 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
* 2 eggs
* 1 1/2 cups mashed, cooked winter squash
* 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
* 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
* 1 cup raisins
* 1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
* 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
* 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder


1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
2. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars until fluffy. Beat in the eggs and squash. Sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and spices; add to mixture, stirring until well blended. Stir in raisins and nuts. Spoon onto cookie sheets spacing cookies 2 inches apart.
3. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in the preheated oven, until edges are golden.

Nutritional Information

Amount Per Serving Calories: 171 | Total Fat: 7.8g | Cholesterol: 22mg

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

CSA Harvest #19~ 7 to go!

Good day! How can it be that 19 weeks have gone by already? And really what we're wondering is how can there be 7 weeks left? :) no, no it's true time does fly when you are having fun and that's what we like to do down here at Big Lick Farm! While we've been having fun we also have been enjoying our fall weather. I love how the light changes at this time of year, still sunny but softer not intense like at summer. The soft light of fall allows us to hang up our huge sombreros and trade them for ball caps which allow for much better visibility. We are watching clouds of Canadian Geese as they migrate south in preparation for winter. Also we watch as the first dry leaves of fall litter the fields. At this time of year a definite perk of being a farmer is being able to be outside to witness the splendor of fall.

This year we have noticed so much more life on the farm in terms of beneficial insects and small, colorful tree frogs. Praying mantises are everywhere we turn. Lingering in the strawberry plants catching grasshoppers, mating in the winter squash patch and hanging out on the huge sunflowers waiting for pollinators to come. Also the tree frogs, leaping widely into the riot of vegetable growth. We are convinced the increase of life at the farm is in response to the way we are growing food.. in a way that promote life and diversity! Unfortunately we do need to go into areas and mow occasionally and till. The increase of animal life makes it a slow process as we mow and till. Baby steps taken to be sure as many of the critters are out of the way as possible. Several times we will see a praying mantis come ambling out of the greenery we are in the process of mowing and we will stop the machines and carry the mantis or tree frog to safety. Call us softies but the frogs and mantises do such a fine job of pest control they are treated with much respect.

This Thursday we are anticipating 42 4th grade students from Glide to visit the farm. The students will be broken into groups and get hands on experience in harvesting, composting, salsa making and helping to plant more cover crop seed as well as learning about organic farming methods. Thank you to our CSA member and Glide 4th grade teacher Julie Vandehey for making this happen! We will post photos next week.

For now we will get to the recipes as we still need to prepare for the arrival of kids to the farm!


Suzie, Asinete, M.A., Violet and Sally

Harvest This Week Includes:

Luscious Sweet Corn (yay it's back!! our last planting.. enjoy!)

Summer Crisp Lettuce

Heirloom Tomatoes

Sweet Yellow Onion

Tromboncini Squash




Raspberries (on rotation)

We know you are all familiar with the above crops for this week's harvest so enjoy!

Also thank you to those of you who have forwarded recipes on how to prepare kale. We were happy to hear that many of you are loving the kale! We will post those forwarded recipes in the upcoming weeks when kale becomes a more frequent part of your CSA share (after we have our first frost). Last year we had our first frost October 7th... that would be this Thursday. We are hoping the first frost will hold off for a bit longer this year since we had such a cold, wet spring.