July 28 or 31

Share contents: 1 yellow bell pepper, 2 Globe eggplant, 1 bunch scallions, 2 pounds of cucumbers, 4 zucchini, 1 pint cherry tomatoes, 1 pound garden peach tomato, 1 pound pink brandy-wine tomato, 1 pound small roma tomatoes, 2 garlic bulbs.

The garlic is cured now and will keep for many months in a cool, dry spot (not the refrigerator).

These cucumbers make a good refrigerator pickle! Also great for cucumber salad and fresh eating. You probably already noticed this, but they do not stay crispy for long because their skin is thin. You can soak them in ice water to crisp them up.

The little roma tomatoes are great roasted and then used in salsa or sauce or eaten as an appetizer.

Ratatouille

  • About ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 eggplant (1¼ pounds); ends cut off, washed and cut, with skin on, into 1-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
  • 3 medium zucchini (about 1 ¼ pounds, washed, ends removed, cut in 1-inch cubes (about 3 cups)
  • 12 ounces onions (2-3 depending on size), cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 yellow bell pepper washed, seeded, and cut into 1-inch squares
  • 4–5 well-ripened tomatoes; peeled, halved, seeded and coarsely cubed (about 4 cups)
  • 5–6 cloves garlic; peeled, crushed, and very finely chopped (about 1 tablespoon)
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  1. Heat ¼ cup of the oil in one or, better, two large skillets.
  2. First sauté the eggplant cubes, about 8 minutes; remove with slotted spoon and transfer to a large, heavy flameproof casserole. (The eggplant will absorb more oil while cooking than the other vegetables.)
  3. Then sauté the zucchini cubes until browned, about 8 minutes. Then transfer to the casserole.
  4. Add about ¼ cup more oil to the pan and sauté the onions and peppers together for about 6 minutes. Add them to the casserole.
  5. Add the tomatoes, garlic, water, salt, and pepper to the casserole and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat, cover, and cook over low heat for 1 hour.
  6. Remove the cover, increase the heat to medium, and cook another 20 minutes, uncovered, to reduce some of the liquid; stir once in a while to prevent scorching.
  7. Let the ratatouille rest for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Tips/Techniques

This recipe is from Jacques Pepin: Ratatouille is the epitome of Provençal vegetable stews. The vegetables are sautéed individually in oil before being stewed, so they keep their shape and texture. If you prefer, though, you can put all the cubed vegetables into a casserole and top with the seasonings and water. Ratatouille is excellent reheated, and superb cold as an hors d’oeuvre topped with small black olives and olive oil.

If anyone still wants a 20# box of sauce tomatoes there are plenty again this week. Email me and I can make one for you to pick up!

July 21 or 24 CSA

This weeks’ share contains:

3 pounds of Italian heirloom tomatoes (that you’ll weigh out yourself), 1 pound of yellow wax beans, 2 pounds of Romano beans, 1 bunch of red beets, 1 bunch of Tropea red onions, 1 pound of baby summer squashes.

We are having a great bean year and hope you are as excited about them as we are. The yellow wax beans pickle well if you like to make pickles. They are also great in bean and tomato salad. Romano beans withstand longer cooking. There are some great traditional Italian recipes for them. I’ll include one today. The baby squashes are great roasted whole or cut in half lengthwise. They are also great in rice dishes.

We pulled all of the onions from the field this week so these are the last that you’ll get with the tops still on. Onions will still be in the boxes regularly as well as garlic. It would be good to get feed back on whether you’d like more or less of these items.

We are at the busiest time of the farm year right now as we harvest whole crops of onions and potatoes to put into storage just as the tomato crop starts to ripen. Harvesting tomatoes takes many many hours of the week. While these things are going on, we have to continue regular harvests, plant seeds for fall crops, transplant other fall crops, and battle the weeds and mud. It is all going very well and the crew of people working here with us are amazing. They are hard working and funny and nice. It is a great year!

Fresh Beans in Tomato Sauce

2 pounds of romano beans, 1 tablespoon of ghee or butter or lard or olive oil, 1 small onion chopped, 1 tablespoon of chopped parsley, salt and pepper to taste, 1-2 large tomatoes.

  1. blanch the beans either whole or snapped in half
  2. In a large skillet over medium high heat, heat ghee, add onion and parsley and brown slowly.
  3. Chop tomatoes into 1 inch chunks and add to skillet along with beans, salt and pepper, reduce heat to medium low and cook with lid on for about 20 minutes or until beans are tender. (after 10 minutes check and if they need more moisture, add a little water)

July 14 or 17 CSA week 9

Share contents:

3 pounds of “Italian Heirloom” tomatoes, 2 bulbs garlic, 1 small celery, 1 pound carrots, 1 bunch basil, 1 bunch Italian heirloom yellow onions (Ramata di Milano), 2 zucchini, 1 pound of green beans.

We have put in the ingredients for a tomato sauce. Garlic can be kept out on your counter, cabinet, hanging basket. Tomatoes are best un-refrigerated and used within a couple days. Everything else will store best in the refrigerator.

The tomatoes are just beginning. You’ll see them for the next 3 weeks or so. Usually we have you weigh them out at market because it is the best way to keep them from getting bruised before you get them. If you are interested in a bulk box of sauce tomatoes for canning/ freezing, let me know. They will be available next week and the following for sure. Its $35 for half bushel.

TOMATO SAUCE

This is the sauce I most commonly make at home. It is great by itself served over pasta or roasted zucchini. It is also good with sausage added.

  1. Finely chop or mince with food processor equal parts yellow onion, celery, and carrot. (use the celery leaf as well)
  2. In a heavy bottom pot, heat enough olive oil to cover bottom of the pan. Add the onion, celery and carrot. Sprinkle with salt, stir well, and put lid on. Over med-low heat let this cook down until well browned and tender…about 30-45 minutes.
  3. While that is cooking, de-skin and chop the tomatoes.
  4. Add tomatoes and a few sprigs of basil to the pot and let simmer until desired consistency.

July 7 or 10 CSA

This weeks’ share: 1 mix onion bunch (flat one is cipollini, red is Rosa di Milano, yellow is candy), 2# squash, 2# cucumbers, 1# beans, 2 heads of lettuce, 1 bunch carrots, 2 purple bell peppers.

The cipollini onion is great caramelized or sautéed with the squash. The red one is fairly pungent and good to cook with. The yellow is mild and slightly sweet.

Week 7 June 30 or July 3

I’m sorry for the delay in getting this out! We harvested the garlic crop yesterday and time ran out!

This weeks’ share includes: 1/2 pound basil, 2 bulbs fresh garlic, 1 bunch of onions ( the white one is a Spanish sweet onion, the reds are fairly pungent), 1 small head of romaine, 2 pounds of beans, 2 pounds of suyo long cucumbers.

The cucumbers are great for raw eating or pickling.

I hope you’re in the mood to make a batch of pesto… . You can freeze it in ice cube trays and then put them in a ziploc bag once frozen for easy, single serving pieces.