Summer CSA: Week 3

Golden Beet Glamor Shot, courtesy of Bob Durling Photography.

We’re making it happen, despite the limited number of dry days in the last few weeks. Luckily we have a super flexible babysitter, who is willing to change the time she works based on the weather. Last week we almost got the entire to-do list done, even with one crew member out sick, and the perpetual rain. We just couldn’t finish planting the winter squash because the tractor was slipping all over the hill. It’s just the butternut and we’ll get it in this week.

Bob Durling has been getting some excellent shots of the shares – the clouds are creating some really beautiful light. Above is the small and large share from last week (obviously, because of choices your share might have looked pretty different!). He also got a pretty epic shot of me, washing scallions in a make-shift set up in the rain, after forgetting to add them to the pick list last week. His exclamation upon exiting the greenhouse and seeing the situation was, ‘Ah! Aragorn is washing vegetables at the farm!”

We were just discussing creating a LOTR-themed CSA. We make a lot of references to the LOTR movies on the farm, particularly:
“What’s taters precious?”
“PO-TA-TOES. Boil ’em, mash ’em, stick ’em in a stew,”
“We ain’t had nothing but maggoty bread for three stinkin’ days”
Ugh, maggots, we know, not the word you want to hear when thinking about all the delicious vegetables you are about to eat, but a part of my goal is to get people comfortable with the reality that food comes from nature, and nature is complex, diverse and there are lots of insects, many of which go through a larval stage that also like to eat our vegetables. Cabbage root maggot, onion maggot, seed corn maggot, leaf minor (no maggot in the name, but its a maggot) . . . a big part of my job is managing for maggots. Ok. I’m done saying maggot.

Anyway, as you can see, we just keep farming, even when its raining and the crew has been pushing through some really wet, uncomfortable weather to get things planted, weeded, and harvested. So if you want to bake them cookies . . . .

I came home so filthy every day last week that Harvey has learned that he can’t run up and hug me right away or he will be covered in the mud that is coating my legs. But it feels good to face these challenges and still feel on top of things. This is the first year I have ever felt slightly over-staffed, and I’m excited to evaluate the results.

What’s in the Share
PEAS!!
Zucchini/squash and maybe cucumber.
CARROTS!!!
Lettuce (yes, more lettuce, its raining a lot, you can do it, eat more salad!!)
GARLIC SCAPES (they come but once a year, kind of like Santa)
Greens Choice: arugula, kale, chard, escarole, dandelion, collards, mustards
Roots Choice: beets, kohlrabi, radish
Herb Choice: Dill, Basil, Cilantro, Scallion, Mint

Jess’s Recipes

Let’s talk about arugula. It gets a bum rap for its bitterness and I’ll be the first to admit that I wasn’t a huge fan at first either. BUT when you pair it with the right things it really is amazing. This vibrant leafy green pairs well with tangy goat cheese or blue cheese, citrus fruits like lemon, orange or grapefruit and (my personal favorite) sweet things like dates or caramelized onions. The sweetness balances out the bitterness and makes taste buds very happy.

PIZZA WITH ARUGULA

One of my favorite things to make with arugula is a pizza: whole wheat crust, your favorite sauce (I love the Whole Foods Organic Pizza Sauce or Rao’s), caramelized onions, chorizo (either sliced Spanish chorizo or fresh chorizo sausage casings removed and browned in a pan first) and crumbled goat cheese Just before serving I pile it high with arugula. The pizza is good alone, but the arugula makes it AMAZING.

ROASTED AND RAW CARROT SALAD WITH HAZELNUTS AND ARUGULA

Another favorite is this salad that makes use of the carrots this week as well as the arugula and the honey-mustard vinaigrette plays the part of the sweet to offset the bite of the arugula. Lip-smacking good!

10 THINGS TO DO WITH GARLIC SCAPES, THE BEST VEG YOU’RE NOT COOKING YET

Seriously. They’re amazing and only around for a very short season. This article has the best ideas on making the most of this delicious early summer treat.

KOHLRABI, APPLE, CILANTRO AND MINT SLAW

This vibrant slaw is the perfect summer side dish. Kohlrabi is another veg that is highly under-rated. It’s a vitamin and mineral powerhouse and it’s delicious raw, roasted, or pureed into soups.

EASY KALE LASAGNA

When my kids ask me what we’re having for dinner there are certain things that will always get a cheer. Lasagna is one of them. Will they be slightly less enthused when they see that there’s kale in it? Probably. But they love lasagna enough that they’ll eat it anyway and it’s not easy to pick the kale out [insert evil genius laugh here].

SNAP PEAS WITH MEYER LEMON AND MINT

On the rare occasion that the kids and I don’t polish off the snap peas by the time we get home from picking up our share, I love to sauté them which really brings out their flavor. This recipe has all the flavors of the season with Meyer lemon (I won’t tell if you use a regular lemon) and fresh mint.

GREEN SALAD WITH HERBS (lettuce, arugula, herbs)

This recipe will work no matter which herb choice you pick this week and calls for lettuce and arugula.

SLAW WITH DILL AND SCALLION
And, a quick recipe from Brittany in case you still have a cabbage rolling around in your fridge from last week (this works with green or napa):

Chop one cabbage, on bunch dill and one bunch scallions and mix together.
Dressing: 1/3 cup mayo, 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp celery seeds.
mix dressing on veggies and let sit in fridge for 1-2 hours. Enjoy. Good for several days.
If you are intimidated by so much slaw, you can use half a cabbage and then just wrap the remaining half in plastic to use another time. It will be good for at least another week.


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