Welcome to our 3rd CSA season! Let’s start with introductions. I’m Stacey; farmer, wife, mother and in charge of writing this portion of the newsletter. I also am usually who you will get if you send us an email or find us at the Farmers’ market. Tenzin, my husband, is the cooking extraordinaire, builder, fixer, farmer, father. He is the guy who cooks us all lunch every day and writes the recipes and tips portion of the newletter. We have two young daughters, Leona (4) and Iris (1.75). They are in charge of making sure we eat dinner at a reasonable time, looking adorable amongst the vegetables and farm animals, and general silliness. We also have three employees, Mallory, Eddie, and Willa who, not only put up with us, but appear to enjoy themselves. Mallory and Eddie help us in the field and Willa helps us raise our little people. We all work extremely hard to bring you all the best food we can. Thank you for supporting us!
This spring has been unusually wet and cool, yet we still managed to hit most of our planting windows. Now that things are heating up everything (including the weeds) are really taking off. The weather this spring did cause some things to grow slower than anticipated but we are fortunate to have 4 large hoophouses (unheated greenhouses) that give us a lot of cushion and summer treats (zucchini), extra early. Still, we were hoping to have radishes this week but they didn’t quite make it yet.
All in all, it is shaping up to be our best year yet. We hope to see you on Sunday at our Spring Potluck!
June 7th, Week 1
Clockwise from top: Fresh Beets, Romaine Head Lettuce, Kohlrabis, Fresh Cilantro, Zucchini, Chive Blossoms, Maple Syrup, and Bok Choy! Please enjoy.
Potluck this Sunday! 4pm
We would love to show you around the farm and get to know you all! Kids are welcome (we have a swingset!) It’s a low-pressure potluck, there will be lots of food so show-off, or just show-up…
Romaine head lettuce
Coffee- optional- Peruvian
Weekly Serving Suggestions:
Head Lettuce- These are Huge! Start early and enjoy a little all week, or make a big salad to share. Romaine is the lettuce of choice for Caesar Salads. It can be as simple as washing and chopping the lettuce, then coating in Caesar dressing. Or add croutons and parmesan cheese. Romaine is fresh and crunchy, goes great with all types of vinaigrettes or creamy dressings. Try it with the Maple dressing recipe. Stores well in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer. Peel off and eat the outer leaves first.
Kohlrabi- earlier than normal, this is juicy and sweet. Best eaten raw, or with just a touch of heat to preserve the crunch. It’s a favorite snack around here, just peeled and sliced horizontally into thin crunchy half-rounds. Sometimes plain, or with salt and lemon juice, we serve it as a side or a snack. Makes a great substitution for water chestnuts in a stir fry, just don’t cook very long or they lose their crunch! The leaves are great too, (although you didn’t get many-wouldn’t fit in the box!) and very good for you. Treat like kale/broccoli leaf/collard greens. Chop ad mix into scrambled egg dishes or stir fry. Cut across the grain and add to soups for green noodley ribbons. Stores well off the leaves in the crisper.
Fresh Cilantro- Cilantro is a wonderful fresh herb, and this is about as fresh as you’ll find it, unless you grow it yourself or come out to the farm. Stores best in a small vase of water in the fridge, I use a coffee mug. Fresher is better, so don’t wait. You can just chop some up and sprinkle on top of almost any dish. Goes well with potatoes, eggs, rice and pasta dishes. Not just for Mexican dishes either, Peruvian and Asian cuisines showcase it as well. Top a salad or stir fry with fresh Cilantro and a soy-sauce and ginger dressing/sauce. Also great for an Asian-style slaw.
Beets- Fresh and rich. Beets are one of the first hearty roots we can grow. They nicely offset a greens-heavy spring, they also make a great addition to a fresh green salad. You can roast or boil the beets whole, then allow them to cool (dunk them in cold water if boiling) then “slip” the skins. Basically, just rub them off with your hands as soon as they are cool enough. I’ve done it with a rubberized hot mitt too, in a hurry. Then slice them to the size you like wedges, cubes, or half moons. Take these aside and season with a favorite dressing or vinaigrette (try the Maple Vinaigrette below). Allow them to marinade until everything else is ready and then add them on top of a salad or into a stir-fry. Otherwise just eat them as their own salad, or add blue cheese. Beets love the blue! Use the beet greens as well. They can be used in place of swiss chard for any recipe. They are a hearty green that is best with a little heat, steam or sautee them before adding to eggs or pasta dishes. They can be chopped, steamed and frozen for winter, when we want the extra greens so much. Separate greens and store them in a bag separate from the bulbs, which will store a long time in a bag in the crisper drawer.
Flowering Chives- We love these colorful treats. They’ll store for a while in a bag in the fridge, but fresh is best. Chop the stems finely and add just before removing from heat. Chop the tops finely and wait to add as a garnish on the plate. Makes a great dip by stirring chopped chives into cream cheese, sour cream, or greek yogurt with a little salt. Mix thoroughly, then add the chopped blossoms on top to make a showy presentation.
Zucchini!- We are so pleased these were ready for our first box. Fresh zucchini is great lightly sautéed or even marinated raw. We often cut them into wedges and coat in a favorite salad dressing for an hour or two before eating as a snack or a side. Try the maple vinaigrette. Stores well in the fridge for a few days.
Bok choy- is super healthy for you, but also fun and easy to prepare. Chop it across the grain (finely for salad, or more coarsely for stir-fry). Grilled Bok-choy has become a personal favorite of mine. Halve or quarter the long way and coat with olive oil and salt/pepper. Then lay it directly on the grill (or under the broiler or in a hot skillet) over medium high heat until just lightly charred. Don’t over-do it, leave some of that fresh crunch (or “tender-crisp”). Stores well in a bag in the fridge.
Maple Syrup– How sweet it is! So easy to use, it almost goes without saying. But here’s some of our favorites: as a sweetener for coffee, oatmeal or anything else, on top of vanilla ice cream, as a glaze for roasted veggies, and in an Apple Cider Vinaigrette. See below. Refrigeration is not necessary, but if you don’t use it often refrigerating after opening can help to keep a harmless (but unsightly) mold from forming on the top.
This maple syrup was made with care over a number of roaring hot wood fired stoves this March. It takes 40 gallons of sap to make just one gallon of syrup!
Peru is the southernmost country in South America that is able to produce coffee. Peruvian coffee is grown high in the Andes Mountains. This exceptional altitude creates a coffee with gentle sweetness and with nice smooth medium body. Peru is an excellent origin for organic coffee due to the hard work of exporters and importers in getting the farmers and the mills set up to organic standards. (taken from Condor’s website)
Recipe of the week…
Apple Cider Vinaigrette:
This simple recipe makes enough to coat one huge head of lettuce (just in case you were wondering. But it is easy to scale up for many uses. Store extra in a mason jar with a lid so it’s ready for quick use anytime.
*I like my dressings and marinades pretty tart, but feel free to reduce the vinegar to ¼ cup for a milder version.
-1/3 cup good Cider Vinegar (non-distilled is best, I use Bragg’s)
-1/3 cup good oil (olive is my go-to, but sunflower oil is really nice too and produced here locally).
-3 Tbsp Real Maple Syrup- don’t you dare cheat
-1 Tbsp mustard, or 2 Tbsp chopped chives
-1 tsp. salt
-add all ingredients to a lidded jar and shake thoroughly. Reshake prior to each use. Works great to marinade mushrooms, broccoli, zucchini, cooked beets, kohlrabi, bok choy, and as a salad dressing. Enjoy!
|Best Guess for next week:
-Napa (Chinese) Cabbage