June 3, 2020 Veggie Feast

Notes from the Farm

Welcome to Veggie Feast (CSA) 2020.  We hope to provide you with an abundance of fresh, healthy produce for the next 18 weeks!  We have been busy on the farm for several months preparing for the 2020 season and we thank you for supporting our farm.

FAQ’s

What time can I pick up my veggies?

We will have all the veggies packed and in the cooler by 11 am on the pick up days (Wednesday and Saturday).  You can pick up your share anytime between 11am – 8pm.

What if I cannot pick up my share at this time?

We understand that there are times when you may not be available to retrieve your veggies at the appointed time.  We can hold your share an extra day, please email and let us know that you plan to be a day late.  If you are going to be gone for the week you can either donate your veggies to a friend (please, please, please be specific in telling them what size share to grab) or tell us not to make a bag/box for you that week.  48 hour notice helps!

When does Veggie Feast (CSA) end?

Last week is the end of September.

Do you recycle packaging?

Yes! And no!  We can always reuse the box or brown paper bag, so please bring those back.  Due to Covid-19 we will no longer be able to reuse twist ties, and plastic bags.  Later in the season we will package tomatoes in plastic crates.  We can reuse these but ask that you save them and turn them in at the end of the season, so we can efficiently clean them all at once.  Much of our packaging was purchased long ago, or given to us by people getting out of the business.  In the future we will purchase biodegradable/compostable bags.  We know plastic sucks…. so do your best to reuse those bags!

 

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Asparagus

Asparagus can be lightly steamed, or roasted.  Stored in a bag in the fridge, it can last several days.

Pok Choi

Pok choi, also known as Pak choi or bok choy is a type of Chinese cabbage, and is commonly used in east Asian cuisine.  This tender green can be sauteed, as in the recipe below, but also eaten raw.

Buttercrunch lettuce

One of our favorite lettuces, Buttercrunch has a smooth, velvety texture and packs some crunch at the same time.  Hence the name, although crunchy butter doesn’t really have the same appeal, does it?  When we pack the lettuce it often has some water droplets that get stuck in the leaves.  Take it out, give it a shake and let it sit on a clean kitchen towel to reduce the excess water before you put it in the fridge.  This will lengthen the time it stores.

Yellow dock

People laugh at us for eating “weeds.”  They actually can have a higher nutrient value compared to cultivated varieties of vegetables.  Yellow dock has a long taproot, which means in can survive drought and absorbs minerals and nutrients from deep in the soil.  This green has a lemony, sour taste.  You could chop it up finely and add it to a salad for extra flavor and texture.  It can also be added at the last possible moment to any dish that needs a green.  Careful to not cook it very long as it will turn into mush!

Garlic greens

Garlic is one of our favorite crops.  Planted in the fall, it’s stalks or greens can be consumed in late spring before the bulb develops.   You can use green garlic where you would use a clove of garlic (The flavor is milder).  Start chopping from the bulb and work your way up; as you get closer to the top the leaves get tougher and it will be harder to chew.  You can save the topmost portion for a vegetable broth.

Sage is a woody perennial that is commonly used to flavor poultry, seafood and other meats, as well as pasta dishes.  It also pairs well with other spices such as oregano, thyme, parsley and garlic.  Fresh sage leaves will have a brighter, lighter flavor than dried sage, and should be added to at the end of the cooking process so to retain it’s flavor.  You can also dry the sage for future use.

Sage is also valued for it’s medicinal qualities, it has antiseptic qualities and can be used as a tea to soothe a sore throat.

Recipes

Garlic Sage Brown Butter

Source:  Adapted from The Spruce Eats

Sage Brown Butter Sauce

ingredients

4 tablespoons butter (1/2 stick)

1 stalk fresh garlic (crushed and chopped)

1/8 cup sage leaves (coarsely chopped)

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

instructions

Melt the butter in a medium saucepan set over low-medium heat. When the butter begins to get just slightly bubbly, add the chopped garlic.

Stir the garlic in the butter for 1 minute. Add the chopped sage to the garlic butter and continue stirring and cooking the mixture for 1 to 2 additional minutes, until the butter has turned very light brown and has a rich, nutty aroma

Season the sage brown butter sauce with ground black pepper.

Serve and enjoy!

Shaved Asparagus Frittata

Source: The Smitten Kitchen

Notes:

  • I added a few slices of proscuitto that I’d first crisped in the pan. While they were certainly not unwelcome, you’re not going to need them here to make a great, even vegetarian, frittata.
  • My favorite peeler for ribbon-ing asparagus, and well, basically everything is a y-shaped one. I have this one. I like it so much get stressed when it’s in the dishwasher and I have to be away from it for an hour.
  • I ended up expecting to use 4 ounces of goat cheese but only used 2. Use the amount that looks good to you; if you buy too much, the extra is great crumbled on at the end, or basically on anything, in my opinion. You could, of course, use a handful of any other cheese that you prefer here. Frittatas are flexible.

Serves 6 in dinner-sized wedges, presuming a salad or something else on the side. Takes about 10 minutes to prep and 10 minutes to cook, tops.

ingredients

1/2 pound asparagus, cleaned, not trimmed
2 ounces thinly sliced proscuitto (optional, see Note up top)
8 large eggs
2 tablespoons milk or cream
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
2 scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 to 4 ounces soft goat cheese, crumbled (to taste)

instructions

Prepare the asparagus: No need to snap off the tough ends of your asparagus. Lay a single stalk on its side on a cutting board. Holding onto the tough end, use a vegetable peeler to peel ribbons away from the tough end (and your hand) right through the soft tip. Discard the tough ends once you’re done peeling.

[As you get to the bottom of your stalk, you might find that the raised edge of your peeler is keeping the blade from shaving the asparagus as thin as you’d like. For this, I move the asparagus to the edge of the cutting board with the peeler blade half-off so you can get closer. Just be careful not to shave your cutting board. 🙂 ]

Crisp the proscuitto: If you’re using the proscuitto, heat the 12-inch ovenproof skillet you’ll use for the final frittata over medium heat. Lay slices in a single layer (will need to do this in two batches) and cook them until lightly brown underneath and curling. Flip them for another 20 to 30 seconds then transfer them to paper towels to blot off the extra oil and cool. Repeat with remaining proscuitto. You’ll use the pan again in a minute.

Heat your broiler.

Vigorously beat your eggs with the milk or cream, plus salt and pepper until well-combined. Stir in scallions and crumble in crisp proscuitto, if using. Gently add asparagus peels, just swishing the egg mixture over them.

Heat your skillet over medium heat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Let it heat fully, then swish it around so it goes up the sides of the pan. Pour in asparagus and egg mixture, nudging the asparagus around so it mostly stays level with the eggs. Crumble goat cheese over, to taste. Cook gently (lowering the heat to medium-low if needed) for about 5 minutes, until the edges are set and brown but it’s still loose and eggy on top. Transfer skillet to the broiler and cook for another 1 to 3 minutes, keeping a close eye on it, until eggs are set on top.

Let cool for 5 minutes before cutting into wedges, or longer if you’d like to eat it at room temperature.

 

We have more veggies!!!

We have an abundance of storage vegetables if you need any for your fall feasts!

Red onions $1.25/#

Yellow onions $1.25/#

Shallots $3.00/#

Sweet onions $1.00/#

Winter squash $1.25/#

Contact us at yourganicfarmmt@yahoo.com to place your order, or call Leon at 961-5452.

Hope you are enjoying the beautiful sunshine.

Cheers,

Pam and Leon

Veggie Feast (CSA) October 2

Notes from the Farm

The past week was a push to get everything harvested before the hard frost.   We succeeded but are pretty spent from the rush.

 

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Since we pretty much had to clear out the fields the veggies are varied and abundant.  This is the last week of the veggie feast.  We hope you have enjoyed the produce as much as we enjoyed growing it for you!  Thanks for eating local food.

New This Week

Italian Plums

Italian Plums are one of our favorite treats this time of year.  This freestone plum is easily halved and pitted, making it ideal for drying, or culinary uses.  No need for a knife!

Recipes

Rustic Plum and Walnut Cake, sliced

Walnut, Olive Oil and Plum Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup (4 oz) untoasted walnuts, very coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 large plums
  • 2-3 tsp coarse sugar, for topping

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly grease a 9-inch springform pan.
  2. In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, walnuts, sugar, baking powder and salt. Whizz until walnuts are very finely ground. This can be done in a large bowl if you are working with pre-ground walnut meal/flour.
  3. Add eggs, olive oil, milk and vanilla extract to the food processor and whizz until all dry ingredients are incorporated and batter is uniform. Pour into prepared pan.
  4. Halve the plums and remove the pits, leaving the skin on. Arrange the plums cut-side up around the outer edge of the cake, placing remaining plum halves in the center (eg: 6 around the outside, 2 in the center).
  5. Sprinkle cake and plums with 2-3 tsp coarse sugar.
  6. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  7. Cake can be served while it is still slightly warm or when completely cooled.

Serves 8.

Source:  Baking Bites

Veggie Feast (CSA) September 25

Notes from the Farm

We continue to harvest and haul veggies into protected areas where they can cure for winter storage.  People ask us what the busiest time of year is for the farm, and it’s hard to say, but there is definitely a sense of urgency in the fall.  Depending how early frost is, and how prepared we are, the urgency can turn to frenzy.  This year we have had a mild September, with temps in the forties at night, so we’ve been paced but not frantic.  Frost is in the forecast near the end of the week, which either means covering the sensitive crops, or getting them out of the field.

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Veggie Feast September 25, 2019

Brussels Sprouts, Pears, Pak Choi (Bok Choy), Sunshine Winter Squash, Storage Carrots, Red Onions, Parsley, Bell and Anaheim Peppers

New This Week

Brussels sprouts

Brussels sprouts on the stalk are fun for seeing how this mini cabbage look-a-like grows.  If you don’t have room in the fridge for the whole stalk, the sprouts can be easily popped off the stalk and stored in a plastic bag.

Brussels sprouts can last a long time but they are best when eaten sooner than later, as their flavor becomes more assertive over time.  Any food item that goes well with cabbage or cauliflower also makes a great pairing with Brussels sprouts, including butter, cream, blue cheese, mustard, capers, garlic, bacon, and vinegar.  Brussels take well to steaming, roasting, or braising.  If cooking whole, cutting an X in the bottom brings heat to their centers more quickly.  Generally the small round heads are cut in half or thinly sliced, allowing them to cook faster and better absorb more sauce or seasoning

Pears

Once again our friend Mary is sharing pears from the bountiful tree in her yard.  Not only are these pears delicious, but they are also grown to organic standards.  They keep very well in the fridge, but ripen faster at room temperatures.

Pak Choi

This tender Asian mustard can be sauteed, steamed, souped, or eaten raw.  Enjoy.

Sunshine Squash

Sunshine is an apt name for this medium sized squash.  The bright orange color is not only skin deep but saturates the interior too, making it as pretty on the inside as it is on the outside.  You can bake this squash whole, like you would a potato, and then cut it in half, remove the seeds and scoop out the delicious flesh.

Recipes

Classic Vegan Carrot Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons Ground Flax Seed
  • 1/4 Cup Orange Juice
  • 1/2 Cup Coconut Sugar
  • 1/4 Cup Grapeseed Oil
  • 2 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
  • 1 + 1/2 Cups Grated Carrots
  • 1 Cup White Spelt Flour
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Cup Walnuts
  • 1/2 Cup Raisins

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 340 degrees F (170 C).

  • Place the ground flax seed and orange juice into a small bowl, whisk and set aside.

  • Wash peel and hand grate the carrots.

  • Place the coconut sugar, grapeseed oil, and maple syrup into a mixing bowl. Add the flax seed mixture and whisk until well combined. Next, switch to a spatula then add the grated carrots to the bowl and briefly mix.

  • Chop the walnuts and set aside along with the raisins.

  • Mix the spelt flour, baking powder, and baking soda together in a separate bowl, then add to the wet mixture and mix again. Finally, add the chopped walnuts and raisins, mix well, then transfer to a 9.4-inch x 5 inch (24 cm x 13 cm) or similar, bread pan lined with baking paper.

  • Even out the cake with a spatula, garnish with extra chopped walnuts then pop into the oven to bake for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick from the center of the cake comes out clean.

When ready, remove from oven and let cool before digging in!

Source: Let’s Brighten Up

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Vinegar

(serves 4)

This recipe was shared by one of my favorite foodie friends, Emily, and it is her favorite way to cook and eat Brussels sprouts.  Simple, quick, and delicious.  For those of you who need a bit of protein, bacon or pancetta would make a great addition to this dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 pound of Brussels sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt and freshly milled pepper
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries, optional
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Cut Brussels sprouts in half lengthwise and remove any yellow or wilted leaves.
  3. Toss well with olive oil, salt, pepper, and cherries.
  4. Roast on a sheet pan for 15 minutes.
  5. Remove from oven and gently toss halves with balsamic vinegar.
  6. Continue roasting for 10-15 minutes, checking occasionally to make sure the balsamic vinegar does not over caramelize.
  7. Serve while still warm.

Veggie Feast (CSA) September 18

Notes from the Farm

Thanks to some hardworking friends our onion harvest is underway.  And they look good!  In this week’s veggie box are some sweet onions.  We have had sweet onions last until February or later, but generally their shelf life is about mid November due to their high water content.  The red onions are also harvested you will see those next week.

We also eagerly dove into the squash patch and we are, well…..slightly bummed.  This crop is growing underneath the canopy of sunflowers to the south of the driveway.  The foliage is beautiful but much of the squash is squishy!  Yes, the beautiful summer of occasional rain and mild temperatures didn’t do the squash any favors.  Many fruits are simply immature and would need another month of warm temperatures to ripen, and others are ripe but moldy.  You will still get winter squash in your shares, but not the quantity as in years past.  On the bright side everything else is rocking so there is no shortage of good eats.

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Paprika Peppers, Jalapenos, Carnival Squash, Leeks, Purple Potatoes, Sweet Onions, Beets, Assorted Tomatoes and Cucumber

New This Week

 

Paprika Peppers

The paprika is probably best known as a ground spice.  These sweet peppers are thin skinned and perfect for drying into homemade paprika powder.  If that is not your thing they can also be thinly sliced and added to a sautee, a baked entree or an egg dish.

Jalapenos

As for all “spicy” peppers, heat intensity can vary widely.  If you slice the tip off each pepper you can usually smell the spiciness, or taste a small portion.  We have grown jalapenos ion the past that had the heat intensity of a bell pepper (impressive, huh?) and other years were there was a bit of a kick.  Pepper roulette.

Carnival Squash

Carnival winter squash are a type of delicata.  The skin is thin, which means you could peel it if you really want to.  The flesh is a light yellow with a mild flavor.  Since our squash crop is compromised we are not sure how long the fruits will store.  Could be a few weeks or could be months.  If you do plan to keep it for later just check it every week for soft spots, especially on areas where the skin has a nick.

 

Leeks

Is it really that time of year for leek soup?  Why, yes.  Or try out the recipe below and see how fermentation goes for you.  A friend gave me a taste of her fermented leeks last year and I am now inspired to make my own.

Recipes

Spicy Fermented Leeks in a Jar

Ingredients

  • 3 Small leeks
  • Handful of fresh dill
  • 1 Small dried hot red pepper
  • 3 Garlic cloves
  • 1/2 Tablespoon of sea salt
  • 1 Teaspoon of coriander seeds

Instructions

  • First, wash the leeks, making sure that there’s no dirt in between the leaves.
  • Next, remove the roots and thinly slice the leeks, discard the dark green portion of the leaf, and place in a bowl.
  • Finely slice the garlic cloves, and add the salt to the leeks, so that it can begin to release their liquids.
  • Now, depending on how spicy you like your food, I added 1 small dried red pepper, but you can go wild. Grind the red pepper and the coriander seeds.
  • Finely chop the fresh dill and add to the bowl.
  • Now, give it all a good massage.
  • Finally, cram it all into your glass jar, with an airlock, and fill with water.
  • Weight everything down, I use a plastic sheet and a shot glass, close the jar and leave out at room temperature for 3 – 7 days, away from direct sunlight, then transfer to the fridge. Leave them for a few more days, for the flavors to perfectly infuse. Then, dig in.

Source: Let’s Brighten Up

Carnival Squash Chowder

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 lbs Carnival Squash peeled and diced
  • 2 oz jamon or prosciutto finely minced
  • 1 medium onion finely minced
  • 2 gloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme minced
  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup ap flour
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 0.5 oz dried porcini mushrooms re-hydrated and chopped
  • 1 tbs fresh sage minced 
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Peal and dice the squash in to half inch cubes. Finely mince the ham, onions, and garlic.
  • In a large stock pot or dutch oven, brown the ham for 5-7 minutes over medium-low heat. Add butter and onions and sauté for 5 minutes until tender. Add the garlic, nutmeg, and thyme and cook for 30 seconds. Add the flour and stir in with the other ingredients for 2 minutes.
  • Slowly whisk in the vegetable and chicken broth an bring to a simmer. Add the bay leaf and porcini mushrooms and simmer until the squash is fork tender, about 15 minutes.
  • Once the squash is fork tender, remove the pot from the stove and turn off the heat. Use a potato masher to smash some of the squash leaving some larger chunks. Incorporate the freshly minced sage and vigorously whisk the chowder. Whisk in the cream just before serving.

Source:  Eat Up!

Veggie Feast (CSA) September 11

Notes from the Farm

This is the final week of corn.  It’s been a good run.  At the beginning of the season the corn looked pretty weak, it was so cold (remember way back in May?) we had poor germination.  But it has been a success.  We grew four varieties this year, one early season, one mid-season and this week’s variety, which is a bi-color hybrid that takes a bit longer to mature.  That’s only three you say?  We grow one variety called Painted Mountain, and that one is for the birds.  Painted Mountain corn is a colorful, beautiful, highly nutritious field corn that was developed in Montana.  It can be eaten fresh, or ground for cornmeal.  Or grown for the blackbirds so they do not eat the sweet corn.

Painted Mountain Corn

This Week’s Veggie Feast

Veggie Feast September 11, 2019

Anaheim peppers, shiso, cantaloupe, celeriac, carrots, red cabbage, Swiss chard, yellow zucchini, corn

New This Week

Anaheim Chile Peppers

Anaheims originated from New Mexico and were brought to Anaheim, CA in the early 1900’s.  The heat of these peppers varies wildly, ranging from 550 to 2,500 on the Scoville scale.  Pepper heat intensity depends on many factors, climate being a major player.   You can taste test a tiny bit of the pepper to see how much heat it carries.  These peppers are great in chili, fajitas, burritos, veggie egg scrambles, enchiladas, or salsas, or can be stuffed and baked.

Shiso

Shiso hails from Asia and is one of the “new” foodie crazes.  We decided to give it a try this year.  It is an annual mint in our northern climate and grew well.  The leaves look and feel a lot like catmint in shape and texture.  It has a slight minty flavor to it, but nowhere as strong as peppermint or spearmint.  I would say the flavor is earthier.  Since this is a new crop for us we have little, okay make that no experience using this herb, but we are excited to try it out.  Let us know what you think.  Does shiso have a place in the veggie feast?  Here is a blog that has 43 things to make with shiso.

Celery Root

Celery root or celeriac is an odd looking vegetable that is overshadowed by the tasteless celery stalks that are sold in the grocery store.  Oops.  Did I just write that?  The celeriac bulb is relatively mild and can be roasted with other veggies, or diced and put into soups.  It also makes a lovely addition to purees.  The stalk and leaves are much more flavorful and can be used as spicing agents.  We like to dry the stalk and leaves and use them in the winter to add yumminess to soup and baked entrees.  There’s more information for celeriac on our website

Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe is another new crop for us.  We grew them in the greenhouses for a couple of years only to lose them among the jungle of foliage.  This year we grew them outside to see if they would mature before the frost.  We did not grow a large number of plants, so we are trying to make sure everyone gets a melon.  If you did not get one in your share last week or the week before one should be in your share this week.  They are delicious and very ripe.