September 16 or 19 CSA

This weeks’ share includes: 1/2 pound baby greens, 2 garlic bulbs, 1 pound onions, 2 pounds fingerling potatoes, 2 pounds okra, 3/4 pound habanada peppers (NOT hot!).

The baby greens are kale, collards and baby pac choi. They’re great as salad greens or lightly sauteed.

The habanada peppers can be de-capped on the stem end and stuffed with sausage and cheese or potatoes and cheese and baked for a great appetizer. They can also be fermented and used to make a great pepper sauce. I add a few hot peppers to give it heat but its great without too. They can also be pickled in vinegar with or without okra.

To pickle the okra, wash it and pack firmly into jars. (2 pounds will make about 3 pints. If you add peppers as well, it will make about 2 quarts.) In each jar put 1-3 peeled cloves of garlic, several habanada peppers and 1 hot pepper per jar if you want it to be spicy. Make a brine of 1 cup apple cider or white vinegar, 2 cups water, 2 teaspoons dill seed, 2 teaspoons mustard seeds, and 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons salt. Bring the brine to a boil and pour hot liquid over okra. You can just tuck it away in your refrigerator with a lid on once the liquid has cooled or you can process it in a water bath for 10 minutes. Either way, let it sit for several weeks before eating for optimal deliciousness.

The process of fermenting the peppers is one that I cannot put into words and instruction well here. There are 2 resources I use for fermentation instruction. They are Sandor Katz’ Wild Fermentation and The Noma Guide to Fermentation. I am not always successful but naturally fermented hot sauces are my favorite kind so I keep trying. Loosely, I use a 5.4% brine solution to ferment ( 3 tablespoons non-iodized salt dissolve in 1 quart of water).

September 9 or 12 CSA

Share contents this week;

1 pound of turkey red wheat flour (there will be cornmeal for those who are gluten free, just ask), 1&1/2 pound sweet peppers, 1 bunch leeks, 1 bunch turnip greens, 1 bunch radishes, 1/4 pound bird’s beak peppers, 1 bunch basil.

This is probably the last batch of basil for the year.

The turnip greens are from the mild hakurei turnips and are great raw as a salad green or lightly cooked or added to pesto.

The birds beak peppers are packed with fruity flavor, barely spicy, and make a great side mixed with other peppers onions and herbs. They’re good sauteed whole too and served with fish or grits. We haven’t been de-seeding them and the seeds are easy to eat and not bitter. They are great pickled too.

Sweet Pepper and Leek Sauce

de-seed and chop 1&1/2 pounds sweet peppers, cut the leeks into half moons 1/4 inch thick and wash them

In a deep skillet or dutch oven over medium high, heat enough olive oil to cover bottom of the pan. Add the leeks and saute until they start to get translucent. Add the peppers and some salt. Stir and let the two cook together until very soft. You can turn down the heat and put on a lid. When soft enough, puree leeks and peppers and return to a saucepan. Add several basil leaves, freshly ground black pepper, a little crushed red pepper if you like spice and let all this cook over low together for about 30 minutes. When you are about to serve it, add a few tablespoons of heavy cream. We eat this over penne pasta or potato patties.

September 2 or 5 CSA

This weeks’  share contains:  2 pounds of potatoes, 1/2 pound of garlic, 1 pound of red onions, 1/4 pound of French Grey Shallots, 1 bunch of carrots, 1 bunch of sorrel, 1 pint each of shishito and aji dulce peppers.

Potatoes store in the refrigerator, garlic and shallot and onions store in a dry cool and not direct light spot.  Carrots and sorrel store in fridge.  Peppers can be kept on the counter.

The aji dulce peppers, though they look hot, are only as hot as black pepper.  They make a great flavored simple syrup that is delicious poured over vanilla ice cream, over a simple cake, to flavor fizzy water.  They’re also good in salsa, beans, in a relish with onions.

The grey shallots need to be used within the month.  They make wonderfully flavored salad dressings.

Sorrel is a lemony flavored herb that is great with potatoes.  There are potato and sorrel soup recipes and potato and sorrel gratin recipes that we love.  I also like it as a pesto.

You can make a great vinaigrette using dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, shallots that is yummy over warm chunks of boiled potatoes.


August 26 or 29 CSA

Hey all!  Sorry I haven’t made a blog entry the last 2 weeks.  The rain gave us a bit of a break and we were planting all we could.  The rains that began in mid-July and have persisted regularly since have greatly affected our ability to plant on schedule and so we are in a lull now and will be for a few weeks.  The boxes will get a little redundant but will be good food and some will be things you can store if you don’t feel like eating them now.  Potatoes will store best in your refrigerator.  Onions and garlic can be stored in a corner of your kitchen that doesn’t get direct sun or in a cabinet.  There will be no winter squash as it died in the WAY TO MUCH rain.  Sweet potatoes will be coming early October.

This weeks’ share:  2 pounds sweet yellow and orange bell peppers, 2 pounds Yukon Gem potatoes, 1 bunch leeks, 1 celeriac, 1 pint cherry tomatoes, 1 quart small plum tomatoes.

The plums and cherries are great oven roasted and then made into a sauce or salsa.  They freeze well once roasted too.  To roast them, I cut them in half, arrange on a sheet pan, sprinkle with salt, oregano, black pepper and olive oil then roast until somewhat browned and dry looking on the surface.  In a hot oven (450 degrees) this takes 20-30 minutes.  In a warm oven (250 degrees) in takes 2-3 hours.

I made a good soup last night with CSA box ingredients.  Chop into thin circles the bunch of leeks and slowly saute in butter with thyme, salt and pepper until soft and somewhat browned.  To the leeks add de-seeded and coarsley chopped bell peppers, peeled and diced celeriac, potatoes chopped into cubes.  Stir all vegetables together and let saute for a few minutes.  Add enough veggie or chicken stock to barely cover and let simmer until everything is soft.  Send thru a food mill or food processor, return to pot and let simmer together for 15 minutes more.  Serve with hot pepper relish or croutons.




August 5 or 8 CSA

This weeks’ share contains:

1 pound of green beans, 1 pound of okra, 1 pound of summer squash, 1 bunch of leeks, 2 Italian eggplant, 1 pint of shishito peppers, 4 pounds of tomatoes.  If you like hot peppers, please grab a few each week while we have them.  We don’t put them in the share much as most folks don’t like them.  You can grab them from us at market of is you do the farm pick-up get them at the stand!img_6386

You will need to weigh out your own tomatoes.  There are several varieties so you can get different ones.  The weather pattern has been rough for the tomatoes.  we are doing everything we can to keep them alive but there is nothing we can do to avoid splitting.  The amount of rain we are getting (daily showers of 1/4 inch to 2 inches for 3 weeks now) cause the fruit to split but they still taste great!  Just need to be used quickly.  I suggest tomato pie, salsa, soup, sauce.

The shishito peppers are not hot.  They are best charred in a cast iron skillet and sprinkled with salt and lime or grilled.  They make a great appetizer or addition to tacos.  You do not need to remove the seeds as they are easy to eat.

This is likely the last of the summer squash.  Lots of crops are succumbing to mold in this extra wet environment of late.

Leeks are best cooked rather than raw.  You can use them in your tomato pie.  They are great in soups and lentils as well.  Cut them in half and then into half moon pieces and wash.  Especially the part close to the leaves holds dirt.  pat them dry and saute in some oil and or butter for about 5 minutes while stirring, then put a lid on and turn to low and let cook until very soft (melted), then add to your dish.  They lend much flavor to anything.

Roasted Okra and Summer Vegetables, from Root to Leaf

1 pound okra washed, capped and halved lengthwise, 1 small onion, 3 cups total of any variety of other summer vegetables (squash, green beans, tomatoes), slat, freshly ground black pepper, extra virgin olive oil, fresh basil and mint

Preheat the oven to 400.  Combine okra, onion, and other vegetables in a bowl.  Season with salt and pepper, drizzle with olive oil, and toss well to coat.  Transfer to a roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet and spread out in a single layer.  Roast until the vegetables are just tender, about 10 minutes.  Toss with fresh herbs. (I prefer to let them get a little bit more browned than just tender.  Also, I like parsley, cilantro, anise hyssop or a combination of all the herbs as well.)