Wobbly Cart Farm Fall CSA week 3

11-1-16

 

My November Guest 

 

My Sorrow, when she’s here with me,

Thinks these dark days of autumn rain

Are beautiful as days can be;

She loves the bare, the withered tree;

She walked the sodden pasture lane.

 

Her pleasure will not let me stay.

She talks and I am fain to list:

She’s glad the birds are gone away,

She’s glad her simple worsted gray

Is silver now with clinging mist.

 

The desolate, deserted trees,

The faded earth, the heavy sky,

The beauties she so truly sees,

She thinks I have no eye for these,

And vexes me for reason why.

 

Not yesterday I learned to know

The love of bare November days

Before the coming of the snow,

But it were vain to tell her so,

And they are better for her praise.

 

Robert Frost

 

 

Large shares: Butternut squash, rutabaga, beets, purple potatoes, red cipollini onions, chard, vitamin green, Italian parsley, carrots

Small shares: Butternut squash, beets, purple potatoes, red cipollini onions, vitamin green, Italian parsley, red cabbage, carrots

 

Dear CSA members,

We have made it through October, and it has been the wettest ever recorded in Western Washington! Amazingly more than 10 inches of rainfall was recorded for our area, and it temperatures were very warm, though I am not sure about any temperature records. It seems extremes in weather patterns are occuring with ever more frequency these days. Our hot dry summers are record setting temperature and drought, while our wet periods are extreme rainfall records, flood events, and wind and hail storms.

Our recent wind storm wasn’t nearly what was predicted, but we have experienced first hand what extreme weather can and will do to our river valley! The big floods of 2007 and ’09 as well as several major wind events and a significant ice storm in the last 10 years have taught us to continue to be prepared.

As farmers we are naturally constantly adapting our operation to deal with climate and weather fluctuations, but it seems inevitable that we will suffer losses to our crops, equipment and materials with increasing frequency in the years to come. We will need to adapt and be ready for heat and drought stress in the summer, increased pest pressure,  and very wet soils, floods, wind and hail storms in the spring, fall and winter. This will mean fine tuning our planting and harvesting schedules and variety selections to meet the changing conditions, as well as learning to conserve water in the summer months and preparing/planning for flooding in the winter months.

We have spent part of this week preparing for winter flooding by moving materials that are no longer essential on a daily basis into the barn loft and moving tractors and equipment that is not in immediate use up to a non floodplain storage barn that we rent. We are also thinking about increasing drainage around barns where we do most of the washing/packing to reduce mud situations and ponding of water. In the future we would also like to build barn doors to reduce the wind tunnel effect in our barn and install more lighting and heat for comfort and saftey.

Here is a quick run down of some of this week’s harvest:

Butternut squash: this large yellow bell shaped squash has a sweet and slightly nutty flavor. When ripe the flesh is deep orange in color. Butternut squash is best eaten roasted, grilled, or mashed to make soups, or desserts like pies and muffins. To roast: cut it in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds (reserve them to roast in the oven with salt or soy sauce if desired) place cut side down on a oiled baking sheet, and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until softened. Once cooked the flesh can be used in a variety of ways or just eaten as is with butter and brown sugar! Will keep for many weeks if kept cool and dry.

Rutabaga: this cross between a cabbage and turnip is one of the many edible manifestations of the brassica family. Rutabagas have been eaten for centuries by humans and are excellent roasted and mashed. They are very high in nutrients and fiber and low in calories. Will keep for many weeks in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator.

Red Cipollini onions are Italian varieties that are small and flat. They have high residual sugars that make them excellent for roasting and caramelizing. The red variety seems to be an excellent keeper and in my mind, lends itself to warming, sustaining, meals during cold weather.

Vitamin Green: White stalks and very glossy green leaves. Mild-flavored for salad, steamed, or stir-fry. Easy to grow, unfazed by heat, very cold-hardy. Good choice for winter and early spring salads. Eat stalks, leaves, and flowers! Very tender, use up a.s.a.p.
Purple potatoes: these beautiful tubers originate from heirloom varieties that have been cultivated for thousands of years in the Andes mountains of South America. Purple potatoes are beautiful in color and very high in an anti-oxidant called anthocyanin that is a known cancer fighting substance. Their texture is slightly dry compared to a yellow finn or a fingerling but they are nonetheless excellent roasted, fried or used in soups and stews.

If you are interested in purchasing bulk quantities of potatoes, beets, winter squash and more for winter storage you may place orders on our webstore and we can deliver the produce with your next CSA share. Next week will be our last delivery so this if your last week to order. Please indicate in the comments area of check out what drop site you would like the produce delivered to and place orders by 10 am on Monday for Tuesday delivery.

http://wobblycart.smallfarmcentral.com/store/wobbly-cart-farm

 

Thank you and have a great week,

Asha

 

Maple-Braised Butternut Squash with Fresh Thyme: Melt 6 tbsp butter in a heavy large deep skillet over high heat. Add 1 3 to 3 1/2 lb butternut squash, halved lengthwise, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1 inch cubes, sauté 1 minute. Add 1 ¼ cups low-salt chicken broth, 1/3 cup pure maple syrup. 1 tbsp minced fresh thyme, 1 tsp coarse sea salt, and ¼ tsp black pepper. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer, to cook squash until almost tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer squash to a large bowl. Boil liquid in skillet until thickened, 3 to 4 minutes. Return squash to skillet. Cook until tender, turning occasionally, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with more pepper, if desired. (From Bon appétit.)

Butternut Squash Cheesecake with Chocolate crust and Salted Caramel: Make crust: Preheat oven to 350. Whirl 9oz of chocolate wafer cookies in a food processor until finely ground. Whirl in ½ cup melted unsalted butter just until incorporated. Pour crumbs intp a 9-inch springform pan and press over bottom and about 1inch up the sides of the pan. Bake 7 min, then let cool on a rack. Reduce heat to 300. Make filling: In a large bowl, with a mixer on medium speed, beat 3 8oz pkg cream cheese, at room temp, ¾ cup sugar, and ½ cup light brown sugar, and 1 tbsp flour until smooth. Beat in 4 large eggs, one at a time. Add in 1 cup of cooked, pureed, butternut squash, ¼ cup each heavy cream, sour cream, and maple syrup, the zest of 2 medium oranges, 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice. Beat until just blended. Wrap the bottom of your pan with foil, pressing it up the outside. Set the springform pan in a roasting pan and pour filling into the crust. Pour enough boiling water into roasting pan to come about halfway up the side of the sringform pan. Bake until the cheesecake barely jiggles in the center when gently shaken, about 1 ¼ hours. Let cheesecake cool on a rack 1 hour, then chill until cold, at least 5 hours. Whisk 6 tbsp store-bought caramel topping with 1/8 tsp table salt in a bowl and spoon over the cheesecake. Arrange ½ cup coarsely chopped toasted pecans around the rim and sprinkle flaked sea salt over pecans for garnish. (adapted from a recipe in the November 2011 issue of Sunset Magazine.)

Rutabaga and Carrot Soup: In a large saucepan, sauté 1 medium onion in 1 tbsp butter for 5 minutes. Add 3 small carrots and 1 small rutabaga peeled and chopped. Add ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp ground ginger, and ¼ tsp nutmeg. Saute for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 1 cup vegetable or chicken stock and cook covered, on low heat for 20 to 30 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and tender. Puree the soup with 2 cups orange juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with unsweetened whipped cream and a dollop of cranberry sauce.

Honey Balsamic Beet Salad: place 2 lbs trimmed and scrubbed baby beets in a baking pan. Combine ½ cup balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp honey, and 1 tbsp olive oil; pour over the beets. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover and bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes or until tender. On a platter combine ½ cups cooked quinoa, 2 cups watercress or arugula, and the beets and roasting juices. Top with chopped fresh tarragon.(from Better Homes and Gardens Magazine November 2012)

Caramelized Onions: Heat 2 tbsp butter and 2 tbsp olive oil over med-high heat until the butter is melted. Add 3 lbs yellow onions, thinly sliced. Sprinkle with 1 tsp salt. Cook stirring constantly, 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and brown, about 40 minutes. Add ½ cup dry white wine or water. Stir and scrape the pan to dissolve the browned bits. Remove from heat and season well with salt, black pepper and grated Parmesan cheese.

Red chard and Rice: heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a saucepot over medium heat. Add 4 slices bacon, finely chopped. Cook 2 minutes. Add 2 cloves garlic and stir 1 minute. Add 1 small bunch red chard, stemmed and chopped, season with a little nutmeg, salt, freshly ground black pepper, and paprika. When the chard is wilted add 1 cup white rice and stir 1 minute more. Add 1 ¾ cups chicken stock or water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cover the pot. Cook 15 to 18 minutes, or until the rice is tender. Fluff with a fork and serve

Wobbly Cart Farm Fall CSA week 2

 

10-25-16

Large share: Orange kabocha squash, leeks, red potatoes, turnips, red cabbage, raddichio, kale, heirloom pears, sage

Small shares: Orange kabocha squash, leek, red potatoes, turnips, raddichio, kale, heirloom pears, sage

 

Dear CSA members,

 

Gorgeous fall day today on the farm, but of late it has been rather wet and sloppy out there in the fields! We have had a ton of rain in October which has quickly turned our farm roads into muddy messes. This time of year our harvest activities are slowed by stuck trucks and the extra weight of mud clinging to our crops as we haul them from the field for washing. We have at least one improvement up our sleeve this season with the addition of a four wheel drive tractor. This should make our winter root digging activities so much easier – with less downtime stuck in the mud.

It seems like all we do in the fall and winter is dig and wash tons of root crops. We still have huge quantities of carrots, turnips, radishes, rutabagas, sunchokes and more in the ground and will dig them for many weeks to come now. As we have fewer and fewer crew members this late in the year we often have large digging and washing days in which we can stockplie root crops in the cooler for later in the week. It is a nice way to space our workload throughout the week.

This time of year we must also keep a closer watch on weather, temperature, and hydrograph predictions. We live in an active flood plain of the Chehalis river and often loose crops and have access cut off by flood waters. If we are ready for floods and deep freeze events we can pre-harvest and save crops from being lost! We also need to keep an eye on windstorm events so we can save materials and greenhouses from damages. All part of our transition into the winter months.

Soon, as field workloads slow down a bit, we can begin to put time and energy into planning for next season. We will be spending time going over succeses and failures with crops for the year, inventorying seeds and supplies, and ordering for the 2017 season. I will start planting again in the greenhouses in January and will need to be ready to go again in about 8 weeks. Such are the cycles of the farming year! As for what we harvested this week, here is a quick rundown on some of the crops you will be enjoying:

Orange kabocha squash: These squat orange winter squash are popular in Asia and are also known as Japanese pumpkin. The flesh is an intense yellow-orange color with a sweet velvety and slightly dry texture. Great for making sauces, soups, sauteeing, and baking with. Before eating make sure the stem is very corky and dry which shows maturity. The squash itself will keep for many weeks if kept in a cool, dry location.

Heirloom Pears: These pretty little pears are similar in size and flavor to commercially produced Seckel Pears. They will ripen slowly at room temperature or could be held in the refrigerator for longer periods of time. These pears will be delicious eaten fresh, in baked goods, or as a garnish to a salad or cheese plate.

Turnips: The turnips turned out unexpectedly jumbo this week. They are not as aesthetically pleasing as I would like, but are large and damaged areas are easily trimed off leaving alot of delicious usable turnip. Turnips are great boiled, steamed, mashed, stir-fried, pickled and grated or sliced raw. Turnips will also keep for several weeks in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator.

Leeks: Leeks are a member of the allium family of onions, garlic, scallions etc. They are milder, sweeter, and more delicate in flavor than onions are are often used in soups and broths. To clean, cut the leek in half vertically, and fan out the sheaves under running water to get out any dirt that may be hiding there. The white part is the desirable portion, as the green leaves tend to be tougher and stronger flavored. You can store leeks in the crisper of the refrigerator for several weeks if they are left untrimmed.

Raddichio: This hardy winter green is in the chicory family, it has a bitter taste that mellows with the onset of cold weather and also when you grill or roast it. Raddichio is an excellent addition to salads particularly when paired with cheese, fruits and toasted nuts. I liked this article from the New York Times  http://www.nytimes.com/1988/12/21/garden/radicchio-tasty-but-so-misunderstood.html?pagewanted=all

Sage: This herb has been revered for centuries for both it’s medicinal and culinary qualities. It has a savory, murky, peppery flavor and pairs well with cheeses, meats and fish and is excellent in stuffing for poultry. You can save this fresh herb for several days wrapped in plastic in the crisper drawer of your fridge. If you wish to save it for later I would recommend hanging it to dry in a cool dark place. Once dry the leaves may be used for many months.

If you are interested in purchasing bulk quantities of potatoes, beets, winter squash and more to supplement your CSA share and carry you through the winter months you may place orders on our webstore and we can deliver the produce with your next CSA share. Please indicate in the comments area of check out what drop site you would like the produce delivered to. Thank you! http://wobblycart.smallfarmcentral.com/store/wobbly-cart-farm

This week I have also included a flier from our friends at August Farm. They still have pasture raised pork shares available for this fall. Now is a great time to stock your freezer with delicious pasture raised pork. You can order a custom cut half or whole pig. Their heritage breed pigs are raised outside where they can graze, root and sun in the sunshine. They are fed locally grown, GMO free grain and dairy, fruits and vegetables from local farms. You can find out more information and place an order at http://www.august-farm.com.

Thank you and have a great week,

Asha

 

Roasted Kabocha squash with pancetta and sage: Preheat oven to 400 degress. Halve and seed 1 4 lb kabocha squash. Roast squash cut side down, in an oiled roasting pan in the middle of the oven until tender, about 1 hour. When cool enough to handle scrape flesh from the skin. heat 1 cup vegetable oil in a small deep sauce pan until it registers 365 on a deep -fat thermometer. Fry 20 whole fresh sage leaves in 3 batches until crisp, 3 to 5 seconds. transfer leaves with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Cool 1/4 lb sliced pancetta that has been coarsely chopped in a heavy 4 quart pot over moderate heat, stirring until browned. Transfer pancetta with slotted spoon to paper towels to drain. Add 1 tbsp olive oil to pancetta fat remaining in pot, then cook 1 large chopped onion, until softened. Stir in 2 minced cloves of garlic and 1 1/2 tbsp of chopped fresh sage and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add squash, 1 1/2 cups chicken broth, 3 1/2 cups water and simmer 20 minutes to blend flavors. Stir in 1 tbsp red wine vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Serve sprinkled wiht pancetta and fried sage leaves.

Frizzled Leeks: Cut 2 leeks (white and very light green parts only) into 2 inch lengths and then cut lengthwise into very fine shreds. Rinse the shreds thoroughly, using your fingers to separate the pieces and remove any grit hiding there. Drain thoroughly and blot dry with a clean towel. While the leeks dry, heat 2 to 4 cups canola oil in a deep pan. The pan should hold about 1 ½ inches deep of the oil. When the oil surface is shivering, add a few leek shreds and fry for 10 to 15 seconds. Remove the leeks to a paper towel lined platter to drain and cool. The oil should be hot enough to crisp the leeks golden brown in about 10 to 15 seconds, adjust temperature as needed. Fry the leeks in small batches until all are golden and crisp. Lightly season them with salt and use for snacking or to top salads and creamy soups. They will keep in an airtight container for 3 days at room temp.

Parmesan Potato Gratin: preheat oven to 325. Brush the bottom of a 3 quart baking dish with 1 tbsp olive oil; set aside. Shave 4 cups parmesan cheese into thin strips; set aside. In a small bowl combine 4 slices of crisp cooked and crumbled bacon, 2 thinly sliced green onions, 2 tbsp snipped fresh chives. In the prepared baking dish place 2 lbs peeled and finely sliced potatoes. Sprinkle with ½ tsp each salt and freshly ground black pepper, half the bacon mixture and ½ tbsp snipped fresh rosemary and ½ tbsp snipped fresh thyme. Top with half the parmesan (2 cups). Dot with 2 tbsp unsalted butter. Repeat layers using 2 more lbs potatoes, and additional fresh herbs, and 2 additional tbsp butter. In a small bowl whisk together ¾ cup whole milk, ¾ cup heavy cream, and 3 tbsp all purpose flour; pour evenly over potatoes. Bake, covered, for 1 ½ hours. Increase temperature to 400. Bake, uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes more or until potatoes are tender and top is golden brown.

Grilled Radicchio: heat grill to high heat. Slice your radicchio vertically, and discard any bruised leaves. Brush the greens with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with good sea salt and fresh ground pepper. Turn grill down to med-low. Place the greens on the grill and cook turning every 1 to 2 minutes until the leaves turn a rich crusty brown on both sides. 5 to 10 minutes. Cut the greens into 4 to 6 servings and serve warm or at room temperature with additional vinaigrette.

Radicchio salad with pear, goat cheese and hazelnuts: In a large bowl whisk together ¼ cup olive oil, 3 tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 ½ tsp sugar and season with salt and pepper. Tear up about 1 pound radicchio into bite sized pieces, add 1/3 cup blanched and toasted hazelnuts (almond and walnuts would work too) chopped. Serve salad topped with 1-cup goat cheese and diced pear.

SWEET AND SPICY ROASTED KABOCHA SQUASH: 1/2 small to medium sized kabocha squash, 3 Tbs light brown, natural cane, plus a bit more for sprinkling, 1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper or hot chili powder, more or less to taste, 1/2 tsp ground cumin, 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg, 1/4 tsp salt, 1 Tbs soy sauce Oil for drizzling – pumpkin seed oil is preferred, or use toasted sesame oil, argan oil, or walnut oil.  Preheat the oven to  400°F. Line a baking sheet or two with silicon baking liner or parchment paper. De-seed and cut the squash into slices about 1/2 cm or 1/4 inch thick. (Use a sturdy knife for cutting squash or pumpkin, on a stable surface, and be careful!) Combine all the dry ingredients. Toss the squash slices in this until coated thoroughly. Add the soy sauce and toss well again. Spread the slices in a singler layer on the baking sheet. Drizzle over them with the oil, and optionally sprinkle more sugar on them. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, then turn over, drizzle with more oil and sprinkle more sugar, and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Buttered Turnip Puree: peel and chop 3 large turnips. Combine with 1 quart milk, 3 fresh thyme sprigs, and 1 clove of smashed garlic in a saucepan. Simmer over medium heat until the turnips are tender. 20 to 30 minutes. Drain, discarding the thyme but reserving the liquid. In a food processor, puree the turnips with 1 stick butter and 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Season with salt and pepper and serve hot.

Wobbly Cart Farm Fall CSA week 1

10-18-16

Large shares: spaghetti squash, cauliflower, Cipollini onions, carrots, daikon radish, Austrian Crescent fingerling potatoes, Jonagold or Akane apples, rapini, Czech Black peppers

Small share: spaghetti squash, cauliflower, celariac, Cipollini onions, carrots, Austrian Crescent fingerling potatoes, rapini, Czech Black peppers

 

The Man Born to Farming

-Wendell Berry

The grower of trees, the gardener, the man born to farming,

whose hands reach into the ground and sprout,

to him the soil is a divine drug. He enters into death

yearly, and comes back rejoicing. He has seen the light lie down

in the dung heap, and rise again in the corn.

His thought passes along the row ends like a mole.

What miraculous seed has he swallowed

that the unending sentence of his live flows out of his mouth

like a vine clinging in the sunlight, and like water

descending in the dark?

 

Dear CSA members,

Hello and welcome to week one of the fall csa! The four week fall csa share is one of my favorite times in our farming year. Not only are the fall and winter crops amazing and delicious but our work days become shorter by necessity and our work load tends to slow slightly. Its a welcome relief to us after the hustle and bustle of the summer months.

That being said, the fall can also bring stormy weather, heavy rains, and a lot of muddy conditions. Our recent storm, the aftermath of typhoon Songda, brought us around 6 inches of rain and quite a bit of wind, but thankfully was nothing like the original predictions. Our Chehalis River has risen in an amazing fashion since the storm and I’m sure the salmon are loving the influx of fresh oxygenated water as they begin their fall spawning runs.

We have very nice box this week. These crops are a great representation of some of the hearty fall crops that we are so lucky to be able to grow in our mild climate. The cauliflower has been very abundant for us this year and it is so beautiful. Also, the carrots are extra sweet and crunchy this time of year with cool temperatures and abundant rain water. We still have some lovely apples from the orchard despite the windy conditions this weekend. As a whole, I feel like most of our root crops, brassicas and greens are at their best during the fall CSA share!

Most of these crops, aside from the rapini and apples will keep for some time, so you needn’t feel in an extreme hurry to get through them. Here’s a rundown on some of the less familiar items.

Daikon Radish: This large white carrot shaped radish is also a favorite in Japanese cuisine, though it is believed to have originated in continental Asia. It is used throughout China and India as well. The flavor is milder than many radishes, and makes an excellent quick pickle to garnish other dishes. It can also be cooked in stir fries and soups, grilled, or cut up as a vehicle for dip. Daikon is low in calories but high in fiber and vitamin C. Stores well in the crisper drawer for a week or more.

Spaghetti Squash: this large yellow football shaped squash is an excellent grain free substitute for pasta. It is very low in calories and high in fiber and nutrients. Halve it and bake or steam it until tender. Then use a fork to tease out the long strands of flesh that can be used just like pasta. The squash itself will keep for many weeks if kept cool and dry.

Rapini is essentially the Italian equivalent to turnip greens. Used extensively in Italian and Chinese cooking, it is not as popular in the United States but is gaining popularity. The stems are generally uniform in size (hence cook evenly) and need not be peeled. Clean it as you would other greens, removing the bottom portion of the stems which appear tough (sometimes the stems are tougher than other times depending on the age of the rapini). They stems can be removed up to where the leaves begin, and sautéed before adding the leaves to the pan. This vegetable is a source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as potassium.  To maintain crispness, refrigerate, unwashed, loosely wrapped in a plastic bag or wrap for up to 3 days.

Cipollini onions:  Pronounced chip-oh-LEE-nee, this is a smaller, flat, pale onion. The flesh is a slight yellowish color and the skins are thin and papery. The color of the skin ranges from pale yellow to the light brown color of Spanish onions. These are sweeter onions, having more residual sugar than garden-variety white or yellow onions, but not as much as shallots.

The advantage to cipollinis is that they are small and flat and the shape lends them well to roasting. This combined with their sweetness makes for a lovely addition to recipes where you might want to use whole caramelized onions.

Celariac: the large and unusual knobby root with celery-like tops is celeriac. When the root is scrubbed and peeled, inside is a firm ivory flesh. The celeriac roots is very low in starch and is a nice alternative to potatoes and other starchier root vegetables. It tastes like a subtle blend of celery and parsley. You can use it in soups, grated into salads, roasted in a pan of other root vegetables, or even French fried instead of potatoes. Stores well in the crisper drawer for several weeks with the tops removed.

Czech black pepper This heirloom hot pepper starts out black and then ripens to the gorgeous dark red color. They are similar in heat to the Jalapeno, but have a sweeter more complex flavor.

 

Enjoy and have a great week,

Asha

Fusilli with Rapini, Garlic and Tomato Wine sauce: Fill a sauce pan with enough water to cover 1 bunch of Rapini that has been trimmed and cut into 1 inch peices. Sprinkle in some salt and bring the salted water to a boil, and add Rapini, cook until bright green and just starting to becoem tender, about 2 minutes. Drain and cool in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Drain well. Fill a pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling , stir in 1/2 cup uncooked fusilli pasta. Cook the pasta, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the pasta has cooked through but is still firm, about 12 minutes. Drain well. While the pasta is cooking heat 3 tbsp olive oil in a sauce pan over medium heat. Add 2 chopped cloves of garlic and cook and stir the garlic for about 2 minutes, sprinkle with salt and black pepper, and stir in 1 spring fresh rosemary, 1/2 tsp dried Italian herb mix, and 1/4 tsp crushes red pepper flakes. Stir in the blanched Rapini, 1/4 cup white wine, 1 can diced tomatoes; remove the rosemary sprig, and bring the mixture to a boil. Mix in the cooked pasta, 2 sliced green onions, 1 minced clove of garlic; simmer for 1 minute. Remove from heat and top with a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.

Roasted Spaghetti Squash with Shallots, Parmesan and Herbs: halve a med/large spaghetti squash and scoop out the seeds. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place squash halves face down on an oiled baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes or until the squash flesh is tender. In a large sauce pan melt 1 ½ tbsp butter over medium heat. Add 2 diced shallots and 2 diced garlic cloves. Cook until softened. Stir in 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme, and ¾ tsp chopped fresh rosemary and cook until fragrant about 1 minute. Add in 6 cups spaghetti squash that has been scooped from the rind and toss to combine. Cook until warmed through. Stir in ¼ cup chopped fresh Italian Parsley and 2 tbsp grated parmesan and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper and serve. Serves 6.

Spaghetti Squash with Feta and Sautéed Vegetables: preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a baking sheet. Place a spaghetti squash cut side down on the baking pan. Bake for 30 min or until the squash is tender when pierced by a knife. Set aside to cool until it can be handled. Meanwhile heat 2 tbsp oil, add 1 chopped onion and sauté until tender. Add 1 minced clove of garlic and sauté for 2 min more. Add 1 ½ cups chopped tomatoes, and cook only until the tomatoes are warm. Use a large spoon to scoop the stringy pulp from the spaghetti squash and place it in a large bowl. Toss with the sautéed vegetables, ¾ cup crumbled feta cheese, ½ cup sliced black or kalamata olives, and 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil. Serve warm.

Roasted Cauliflower: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Break 1 2 lb head of cauliflower into bite sized peices. Toss the cauliflower with 1/4 cup olive oil, 5 chopped cloves of garlic, and 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with 2 tsp kosher salt and 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves and toss again. Roast until golden and tender, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.

Honey roasted carrots: preheat oven to 425. Twist the tops of 16 carrots, leaving a 2 inch nub; wash and scrub the roots. Place the carrots on a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with 2 tsps olive oil. Roll the carrots back and forth to coat before placing them in the oven. Melt 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp honey together in a small saucepan and keep warm. Shake the carrots occasionally as they roast. Remove from the oven when they are browned in spots and a sharp knife easily pierces them ( 15 to 20 minutes). Drizzle with honey butter over the carrots, roll them around to coat and place them back in the oven. Shake the baking sheet frequently and remove the carrots when their skin begins to caramelize and a knife easily slides through them, about 5 minutes more. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Ginger, Carrot, Daikon radish salad: Use a mandoline shredder to shred 1 lb daikon radish and 2 large carrots into 4 cups total. Mix together 1 clove shredded garlic and 1 tbsp shredded ginger with the grated vegetables in a medium size bowl. Meanwhile, whisk together 1 tbsp sesame oil, 2 tbsp rice vinegar and 1/2 tsp Sriracha or chili sauce or diced Czech black pepper. Toss the dressing with the salad and garnish with toasted sesame seeds.

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 18

 

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10-11-16

Large shares: Acorn squash, celariac, leeks, Charentais melon, Jonagold or King apples, yellow finn potatoes, kale, carrots, rosemary, sweet pepper

Small shares: Acorn squash, leeks, Charentais melon, Jonagold or King apples, yellow finn potatoes, carrots, rosemary

 

Dear CSA members,

What a gorgeous fall day to be wrapping up our Summer 2016 CSA! We had our first frost of the season last night and certainly had to work to keep our hands warm at the barn as we began work a 630 a.m. The sun is out now and things have warmed up nicely with beautiful blue skies and fall colors all around our valley.

The frost will put an end to all our remaining summer crops such as cucumbers,peppers and summer squash that have still been hanging on. Only the heartiest plants will continue on from here to carry us through the winter months! All our winter squash is safely in storage, and the potatoes should be finsished within the next day or so.  We still have an abundance of brassicas, escarole and raddichio, leeks, sunchokes, beets, carrots and other root crops out in the fields. The cold weather actually causes them to get sweeter! As plants produce sugars through photosynthesis, most are combined and stored in the plant as starches and other large polymers. But in response to cold temperatures, some plants break down some of their energy stores into “free” sugars, such as glucose and fructose, and stash them in their cells to guard against frost damage. Sugar dissolved in a cell makes it less susceptible to freezing in the same way that salting roads reduces ice. Lucky us!

We have a very nice box to wrap up our season with many of my favorite fall fruits and vegetables.

Charentais Melon: A true French cantaloupe that originated in the Poitou-Charentes region circa 1920. Considered by many to be the most divine and flavorful melon in the world. Smooth round melons mature to a creamy gray with faint ribs. Sweet, juicy, orange flesh with a heavenly fragrance. Store dry on the countertop until ready to eat. They don’t hold for long and so asap is best. These are heirlooms that have been bred for flavor and not convienient packability for grocery stores.

Jonagold or King apples: The Jonagold apples come from the orchard on my propery that provides us with tons of fruit each year. Jonagold is a large apple that is aromatic with honey-like flavor notes and tangy-sweet thanks to moderate acidity. They do not store long and should be used asap. Great for fresh eating, salads and desserts. King apples come from a large heirloom tree on the land that we rent. The variety originated in New Jersey in the late 1700’s. King is also a large red and yellow apple with excellent sweet, crisp flavor. They are great for fresh eating and desserts.

 Acorn squash: this winter squash is a very familiar one to most of us. Acorn squash has a sweet, nutty flavor and is excellent baked, sautéed, or steamed. Acorn squash is also delicious made into soups. The seeds can be cleaned and roasted and make a tasty and nutritious snack. This squash will keep for quite some time in a cool dry place – in fact flavor will improve over time!

Leeks: this long and lovely member of the Allium family (onions, garlic and the like) is one of our star winter performers. They will stay alive through most winters here as long as the temperature dosen’t go below 10 degrees or so. They are much prized by chefs for their mild and tender flavor. To use them, first slice the whole thing vertically. Then fan out the many layers under running water to remove any trapped sediments. Slice off the tougher deep green tops, and use the white and light green parts in your recipes. Leeks will also keep for many weeks in your fridge crisper drawer. By peeling away outer layers, you can remove any discolored parts if you do decide to keep them for an extended time.

Celariac: the large and unusual knobby root with celery-like tops is celeriac. When the root is scrubbed and peeled, inside is a firm ivory flesh. The celeriac roots is very low in starch and is a nice alternative to potatoes and other starchier root vegetables. It tastes like a subtle blend of celery and parsley. You can use it in soups, grated into salads, roasted in a pan of other root vegetables, or even French fried instead of potatoes. Stores well in the refrigerator with the tops removed.

We hope you have enjoyed being a part of our Summer 2016 CSA. It is always a great feeling for us to wrap up another 18 week season of delicious food, and all the hard work that goes into being a small organic farm. Each season brings with it it’s unique challenges, sucesses and failures. Nonetheless, it is awesome to look back and reflect on the 18 weeks we have shared enjoying local, seasonal, organic produce. From the first tender lettuce, and garlic scapes, through all the heat loving summer crops like tomatoes and cucumbers and now on to winter squash, leeks, and luscious Jonagold apples.
Please take a moment to be sure you have returned all boxes and have finished payment for the season.
We will be continuing on with the fall share if you are interested there is still time to sign up. Either email me info@wobblycart.com or join on the website www.wobblycart.com.
Thank you all for your support,
Asha, Joe and the crew at Wobbly Cart

 

 

Charentais Melon Salad: In a small bowl combine 3 tbsp olive oil and 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar. Stir to combine. Halve and seed a large Charentais melon, then slice into 1 inch thick wedges. Arrange the melon slices over 6 salad plates. Top melon slices with a slice of Prosciutto di San Daniele, scatter basil leaves on top and dress with the balsamic vinaigrette and freshly ground black pepper. From thecooksatelier.com

Leek and Potato Gratin: Preheat oven to 375. In a large pot of salted boiling water, parboil 3 lbs red potatoes, sliced 1/8 inch thick, for 5 minutes. Drain potatoes well and set aside. In a large skillet, heat 2 Tbsp unsalted butter over medium heat. Saute 10 medium leeks, white and light green parts only, halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into 1 inch pieces (washed thoroughly), and 4 chopped garlic cloves until leeks are tender about 7 minutes. Set aside. In a buttered 9 x 13 inch baking dish, arrange half of reserved potatoes in an overlapping pattern. Pour 1 cup cream and ½ cup milk over the top and sprinkle with 1 tsp salt. Top with reserved leeks and arrange remaining potatoes. Pour another cup of heavy cream and ½ cup milk and sprinkle with ½ tsp salt. Bake until potatoes are tender, top of gratin is golden brown, and most of the cream and milk have been absorbed, about 45 minutes. Garnish with parsely. Serves 12. From November 2011 issue of Country Living magazine).

Celariac and Apple Slaw: Trim, peel, and cut into 1 inch matchsticks, 1 12oz Celery root. Cut 1 large Johnagold apple into matchsticks (2 cups). Combine together with 1/4 cup plus 1 tbsp fresh cider, 2 tsp sugar, 2 tsp dijon mustard, and 2 tsp chopped fresh parsley. Let stand for 30 minutes before serving.

Celeriac Mash: Peel and dice 3 ½ cups of celeriac. Cook celeriac in a large saucepan of boiling slated water for 15 minutes. Add 1 12 oz potato that has been peeled, and cut into 1 ½ inch chunks, and boil until celeriac and potato are very tender, about 15 minutes longer. Drain. Return to same saucepan; stir over medium-high heat until any excess liquid in pan evaporates, about 2 minutes. Add ¼ cup heavy cream and 2 Tbsp butter; mash until mixture is almost smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

 Frizzled Leeks: Cut 2 leeks (white and very light green parts only) into 2 inch lengths and then cut lengthwise into very fine shreds. Rinse the shreds thoroughly, using your fingers to separate the pieces and remove any grit hiding there. Drain thoroughly and blot dry with a clean towel. While the leeks dry, heat 2 to 4 cups canola oil in a deep pan. The pan should hold about 1 ½ inches deep of the oil. When the oil surface is shivering, add a few leek shreds and fry for 10 to 15 seconds. Remove the leeks to a paper towel lined platter to drain and cool. The oil should be hot enough to crisp the leeks golden brown in about 10 to 15 seconds, adjust temperature as needed. Fry the leeks in small batches until all are golden and crisp. Lightly season them with salt and use for snacking or to top salads and creamy soups. They will keep in an airtight container for 3 days at room temp.

 Baked acorn squash with brown sugar and butter: Preheat oven to 400. Cut 1 acorn squash in half and scoop out seeds and stringy pulp. Mix together 2 tbsp brown sugar, 2 tbsp softened butter, 2 tbsp maple syrup, and salt and pepper to taste. Rub the inside of the squash with this mixture. Place the squash cut side up on a baking sheet and bake the squash for about 1 hour or until tender when pierced with a fork.

Apple Pie: For the crust: place 1 cup all purpose flour in a large bowl. Grate in ½ cup frozen unsalted butter, add a pinch of salt. Gradually drizzle in up to 1/3 cup ice water, and mix gently just until the dough comes together to form a ball. To much mixing will make the crust tough. Wrap in plastic and place in the refrigerator. Heat oven to 425 degrees. For the filling: peel, core and slice into thin slices enough apples to make 6 cups. Gently stir into the sliced apples, 1/4 cup flour, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, ½ tsp nutmeg, a dash of salt. Divide your pastry in half and roll out one half. Place in a 9 inch pie pan. Turn the filling into the pie pan. Either dot with additional butter and over with the other half of the pastry, or prepare this topping by mixing ½ cup brown sugar, ½ cup cold butter, and 1 cup flour. Cover the pie with this crumble. Bake until crust is brown and juice begins to bubble through slits in the crust, 40 to 50 minutes. You may need to cover the pie with foil to prevent excessive browning during baking.

Potato Leek Soup: Melt 3 tbsp butter in a soup pot over low heat. Add and cook, stirring, until tender but not browned about 20 minutes 2 large leeks, chopped. Stir in 1 1/4 lbs peeled and thinnly sliced yellow finn potatoes. Add 6 cups chicken or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, simmer until the potatoes are soft about 30 minutes. Puree until smooth. Season with salt, pepper, and fresh thyme to taste.

 

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 17

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10-4-16

Large shares: Delicata squash, red onions, beets, watermelon radish, Purple mustard greens, Italian parsley, sweet peppers, cauliflower or broccoli, red potatoes, summer squash

Small shares: Delicata squash, red or yellow onions, watermelon radish, beets, green or romano beans, cauliflower, cucumbers

 

Dear CSA members,

It’s hard to believe we are at week 17 and next week will be the last delivery for the summer share! There are a couple of things I wanted to go over from the last couple of weeks. I received quite a few comments about the corn earworm damage to the sweet corn and wanted to let you know that we are really sorry about that! We have never had an infestation quite like that before and there is no way to tell unless you open up each ear one by one! We generally try to minimize any type of organically approved insecticide spraying due to their impacts on our pollinators and other beneficial insects, but will have to consider one for this pest next year.

Also, some mold issues with onions and shallots. Our alliums have not been keeping well this year due to alot of humidity and moisture during certain parts of this summer and the curing time of the onions ( the joys of farming in the maritime northwest!). Often times it is extremely difficult to tell if there is mold starting under the skin of an onion or shallot – so we may miss a few here and there.

I wanted to be sure to assure you all that the dollar value of the produce you receive over the course of the season is generally 15% more than what we have accounted for in the share price. Not that we are happy with the quality issues with the corn and onions  – but just to assure you that you are not losing out in dollar value!

Part of the journey of choosing a farm to support through a community supported agriculture progarm is to share in the successes and failures of each season. Each year brings up new challenges as an small organic farm with different pests, diseases, weather and climate challenges. We work to adapt to the problems and highlight our sucesses, and try to create a well balanced and delicious selection of vegetables for you each week.

New this week we have:

Watermelon radishes: This large turnip looking thing is green and white on the outside, but when you slice it watch out! The center is a gorgeous watermelon shade of pinkish red. This heirloom type of the Chinese Daikon radish (called shinreimei in China) is at its best in fall when the weather starts to cool down. Unlike many radishes the intensity of the flavor decreases as it matures. It is mild and delicious served raw, and its color is best preserved when it is served uncooked. Though they are also good sautéed or roasted.

Purple mustard greens: is a Japanese green that has a mild earthy, peppery taste. It is very tender and makes excellent salads and stir-fries. It will keep for 3 to 4 days loosely wrapped in plastic and stored in the crisper drawer of your fridge.

Delicata Squash: These are, in my humble opinion, the best winter squash there is. Delicata have excellent sweet flavor, tender skins, and a very manageable size that make them easy to transport and process. Kept cool and dry, these squash will keep for several weeks and possibly months. Their flavor will improve over time if you can hold off from eating them tonight!

I have enclosed our flyer for sign up for our fall CSA share that will continue immediately after our 18th week of summer share as well as a brochure for locally raised Icelandic lamb from our friend and neighbor Selma. Selma is a long time farmer here in our valley, who raises mostly Icelandic sheep. This spring her ewes gave birth to more lambs than ever before. Many ewes had triplets. Selma thinks this had to do with the very nice pastures they grazed on in last summer and fall. As a result she has many more lambs to sell. If you are into lamb, Icelandic lamb is considered one of the best in the world because of its fine texture and mild flavor. Here is a link to her meat brochures on her website.  If you are interested you can contact her by email Selma@bonedryridge.com or give her a call 360 273 1045 or just send in the order form.

Also, now is the time to finish up any payments still due on your account and return any boxes that you may still have. Next week will be the last delivery for the summer share!

Thanks and have a great week,

 

Asha

 

 

Delicata squash with rosemary, sage and cider glaze: Peel 2 medium delicata squash, cut lengthwise in half, scoop out the seeds. Cut each half lengthwise again, and then into 1 1/2 inch slices. Melt 3 tbsp butter in a large heavy skillet over low heat, add in 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh sage, 1 tbsp coarsely chopped fresh rosemary and cook 3 to 5 minutes, just until the butter begins to brown. Do not brown the herbs. Add the squash to the skillet, then add 1 1 /2 cups fresh apple cider, 1 cup water, 2 tsp sherry vinegar, and 1 tsp salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the glaze is reduced and the squash is tender about 20 to 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Sweet Pickled Onion Watermelon Radish Salad: Slice 1 small sweet onion into thin rounds, slice 1 large watermelon radish into thin rounds, Add 1/3 cup orange juice, 2 Tbsp olive oil, ½ tsp sea salt, ½ tsp pepper, 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar, and a splash of rice wine vinegar. Toss well. Place in fridge to chill overnight. Serve!

Watermelon Radish Chips with Cumin Salt: Peel 4 to 6 Watermelon Radishes and thinly slice. If you have a mandolin, this is ideal for getting the most uniformly thin slices. Heat 2 cups of vegetable oil in a small pot. When hot, toss a handful of radish, making sure you don’t crowd the pot. Fry for about 8 t 10 minutes until really brown. You’ll be tempted to take them out earlier, but you need them to crisp up. They do take longer than potato chips. Continue until done. Season each batch separately and set aside. To make cumin salt – add one tsp salt and ½ tsp cumin and mix in a small bowl, season the radish chip with this. Makes a great appetizer. (From janespice.com.)

Delicata Squash Rings: Preheat oven to 375. Take a whole delicata squash and slice it across sideways. This will make ring shapes out of it. Scoop the seeds out of the middles of your squash rings. Lightly oil a large cast iron skillet with olive oil. Lay the rings out in a single layer across the skillet. Place in the hot oven. Bake for about 10 minutes. Then flip the rings with a spatula. Bake the other side until both sides are lightly browned and the squash is tender. Remove from oven and serve.

Mustard Greens turnovers (could use rapini, vitamin green, or mizuna here): prehat oven to 400. place 1 lb mustard greens (stems removed) in a colander, rinse with cool water, and set aside. Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 cup chopped onion and cook until they are soft and translucent, about 3 minutes. Add 1 garlic clove, minced, and cook 1 minute more, add the chopped greens and cook unitl they wilt and are tender, about 5 minutes. transfer the green back to the colander and press to extract any extra liquid. place them in a large mixing bowl and stir in 5 oil-cured black olives that have been chopped, 8 slow-roasted tomato halves that have been finely chopped, and 1/4 cup feta cheese. You should have about 1 1/2 cups filling.

Unfold 2 sheets frozen puff pastry that has been defrosted onto a lighty floured surface. depending on pastry size, cut each sheet into four 4 inch squares. Divide the filling amongst 8 pastry squares, leaving a 1 inch border. Fold each square into a triangle, enclosing the filling, and seal the pastry by firmly pressing fork tines along the open edges. Use a sharp knife to make 2 1/2 inch long vents in the top of each turnover. Place the turnovers on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and brush their tops with beaten egg. Bake until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes.

Nori Radish Toasts: Slice a 12 in. section of baguette in half length-wise, cut into 2-in. pieces, and toast in a 350 degree oven until golden brown on edges. Using scissors, snip 1 large sheet toasted nori into bits, then pulverize in a spice grinder. Mix nori powder with about 5 tbsp butter; smear thickly onto toasts. Top with thinly sliced radishes and radish greens. (watermelon radishes would work great). (from the November 2011 issue of Sunset Magazine).

Roasted Cauliflower: Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Break 1 2 lb head of cauliflower into bite sized peices. Toss the cauliflower with 1/4 cup olive oil, 5 chopped cloves of garlic, and 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with 2 tsp kosher salt and 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves and toss again. Roast until golden and tender, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.

Quick Pickled Beets: Combine 4 medium beets, scrubbed, trimmed, halved, and cut into ¼ inch slices. 1 small onion, peeled and thinly sliced. ¾ cup apple juice or water, ¼ cup apple cider vinegar, 1/8 tsp ground allspice, and a pinch of sea salt in a pressure cooker. Lock the lid into place and over high heat bring to high pressure. Lower the heat just enough to maintain high pressure and cook for 4 minutes. Reduce the heat by running cold water over the cooker in your sink. Remove the lid, tilting it away from you to allow any excess steam to escape. To serve, lift the beets out of the liquid with a slotted spoon. Serve warm or chilled. (from Recipes from an Ecological Kitchen by Lorna Sass).

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 16

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9-27-16

Large shares: Sweet corn, green beans, broccoli, cabbage, shallots, Cipolinni onion, cucumbers, heirloom tomatoes, red fingerling potatoes, fresh dill

Small shares: Sweet corn, broccoli, cabbage, shallots, heirloom tomatoes, bell peppers, red fingerling potatoes, fresh dill

Dear CSA members,

Week 16… We have pulled off one more round of sweet corn, and some of the most amazing broccoli I have yet to see in 15 years of working on organic vegetable farms. Some of the large shares received heads that were 2+ pounds! I am blown away.

We have one last portion of heirloom tomatoes for you. The dreaded blight has set in in earnest and so the time frame for tomatoes is drawing to a close. I felt like some of these were less than perfect, but definitely still serviceable and tasty.

Both shares received fresh dill this week. This fern like herb has a nice sweet licorice and parsley like flavor. I think it is delicious with potatoes, in green and pasta salads and in creamy dips. Also, new this week is shallots. Shallots, like onions and garlic, are a member of the allium family, but their flavor is richer, sweeter, yet more potent. Shallots add a great depth of flavor to pan sautés, soups, sauces, and stews, and pair especially well with chicken and fish. To substitute one for the other in recipes, use half the amount of shallot that you would onion.

Next week we will likely have Charentais melons and possibly Jonagold apples too!

Out in the fields we have been very busy keeping up with the harvest as our restaurant orders have increased quite a bit in the last couple of weeks. We have also begun bringing in the winter squash crop and it has been very nice to see how well the loader on our new tractor has been aiding this harvest this year. We used to have to tow a trailer through the field and toss the squash to a person who stacked them on the trailer, these then had to be unloaded by hand once at the storage building. Now we can toss squash to a person who loads it directly into a large bin on the front end loader which is then placed directly where needed for storage. It’s amazing and labor saving!

Next up will be our big potato harvest where we mechanically dig all the potatoes with a cool old-fashioned potato digger and bag them up for winter storage. It is a big event, and a lot of heavy lifting but it’s also fun and satisfying to know all this great food is safely stored for the fall and winter.

Have a great week,

Asha

 

Grilled Potatoes with Fresh Dill: preheat grill to 350 degrees. Slice thinly 2 lbs potatoes. Toss with ½ tsp salt, 4 tbsp olive oil, and pepper to taste. Lay out 2 large sheets of foil 12x 26 inches. Oil the foil and arrange the potatoes in a single layer over one side of the foil. Fold the foil over and crimp the edges forming a packet. Grill the packets, covered, rotating once, for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender and browned. Open packets and transfer potatoes into a serving bowl. Toss with 2 tbsp butter and ¼ cup chopped fresh dill. Sprinkle with coarse salt and serve.

Roasted Tomatoes and Cipollini: Preheat oven to 375. Boil a small pot of water and blanche 1 lb whole cipollini for 10 seconds, then plunge them into cold water. Use paring knife to make a small slit in each, and slide them out of their skins and outer layer. Spread peeled onions and 1 lb chopped tomatoes in a roasting pan. Drizzle with ¼ cup olive oil and a few good pinches of coarse salt. Toss everything together until well coated and roast in oven for 45 minutes, reaching in every 15 minutes with a spatula to roll the tomatoes and onions around to ensure all sides get blistered. Just before you take the tomatoes and onions out, place 4 1-inch thick slices of country or ciabatta bread on the oven rack and let them toast lightly. You can rub the toasts with a halved garlic clove, if you like, while still hot. Use tongs to arrange the toast in one layer on a serving platter. Dump 1½ cups cooked white beans over the bread. You can also use 1 15 oz can of white beans rinsed and drained. Scrape the entire contents of the tomato- and -onion roasting pan, still hot, over the beans. Do not skimp on the juices that have collected, all of them – don’t leave any in the pan. Sprinkle the dish with a few slivered basil leaves and eat at once. Serves 4 as a small dish, 2 as a main. (From smittenkitchen.com)

Caramelized Shallots: Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium low. Thinly slice 6 to 8 oz of shallots and saute them in the oil for about 2 min. add 1 tsp salt and saute for 5 min more, or until soft. Reduce heat if necessary to prevent them from browning too quickly. Add 1 tsp sherry or apple cider vinegar, 2 tsp sherry or white wine, 2 tsp brown sugar, 2 sprigs fresh thyme, and freshly ground pepper to taste. Sautee for another 20 min, stirring occasionally. Add water as needed to prevent sticking and burning, about a tsp at a time. Remove sprigs of thyme before serving. French Shallot Soup: Prepare 2 batches caramelized shallots and/or onions (see above). Melt 2 tsp unsalted butter over med-low heat in a deep pan or dutch oven. Add the caramelized shallots and stir to warm through. Add 1-quart beef stock, at room temperature and 1 cup red or white wine. Simmer at least 20 minutes and up to 40 minutes. Near the end of cooking preheat the oven broiler. Divide the soup into 4 oven-proof bowls, and stir in 1 to 2 tsp cognac into each bowl. Gently float a thick slice of day old baguette in each and top with 4 oz slices of Gruyere cheese. Broil until golden and bubbly about 3 to 5 minutes.

French Shallot Soup: Prepare 2 batches caramelized shallots and/or onions (see above). Melt 2 tsp unsalted butter over med-low heat in a deep pan or dutch oven. Add the caramelized shallots and stir to warm through. Add 1-quart beef stock, at room temperature and 1 cup red or white wine. Simmer at least 20 minutes and up to 40 minutes. Near the end of cooking preheat the oven broiler. Divide the soup into 4 oven-proof bowls, and stir in 1 to 2 tsp cognac into each bowl. Gently float a thick slice of day old baguette in each and top with 4 oz slices of Gruyere cheese. Broil until golden and bubbly about 3 to 5 minutes.

Spanish omelet: heat ½ cup olive oil in a 8 to 10 inch skillet. Add 1 cup peeled thinly sliced potatoes. Turn them constantly until well coated with the oil. Reduce the heat and turn them occasionally, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, heat in a large heavy skillet: 2 tbsp olive oil, add and cook about 5 minutes ½ cup thinly sliced onion and ½ cup julienned strips bell pepper. Add 1 minced garlic clove, 1/3 cup chopped peeled , seeded, and drained tomato, and salt and black pepper to taste. Continue to cook about 15 minutes. Add the potatoes to the onion mixture and keep hot. Beat 8 eggs with a fork, add ½ tsp salt and a pinch of black pepper. Melt 1 tbsp butter in an 8 to 10 inch skillet over medium high heat. For each omelet pour in ½ cup of the egg mixture. Add about 2 tbsp of the vegetable filling for each one. Also top each omelet with 2 additonal tbsp of the vegetable filling. Serves 4.

Tomato, Red onion, and Purple Pepper Salad with yogurt dressing: Thinly slice 1 medium red onion, place in a salad bowl, sprinkle on 2 tbsp fresh lime juice and 1 tsp salt and mix well. Set aside for 30 minutes. Slice 1 hot chile into matchsticks and add to the onion, cut one medium purple bell pepper into ½ inch wide strips about 1 inch long and toss with the onions and chile. Just before serving add 2 to 3 tomatoes cut into ½ inch pieces and ¾ cup full fat yogurt and toss gently to mix. Taste for salt and adjust, if you wish, and add freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 15

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9-20-16

Large shares: Yellow doll watermelon, sweet corn, broccoli, Romano beans, yellow onions, Yukon gem or red potatoes, Jalapeno peppers, summer squash, lemon cucumbers, lacinato kale, heirloom tomato, cilanto

Small shares: Yellow doll watermelon, sweet corn, broccoli, Romano beans, 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, Yukon gem potatoes, lacinato kale, cilantro, yellow onion

 

The Peace of Wild Things

-Wendell Berry

 

When despair for the world grows in me

and I wake in the night at the least sound

in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, 

I go and lie down where the wood drake

rests in beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.

I come into the peace of wild things

who do not tax their lives with forethought

of grief. I come into the presence of still water, 

And I feel above me the day-blind stars

waiting with their light. For a time

I rest in the grace of the world, and am free

 

Dear CSA members,

Ok, so this share is a little out of hand. As you can tell, late season is certainly where we shine at Wobbly Cart Farm. The boxes are certainly heavy and we weren’t even able to fit the sweet corn in the small share box with those watermelons.

I was pleased that we were able to get enough small and large melons all at once for CSA this week! The variety is called “yellow doll” and has a bright lemon yellow flesh with a sweet, dense and crisp flavor and mouth-feel. This variety is good for our climate because they are small in size and mature quickly. We got them in a little late this year due to excessive mouse damage during the planting time – but better late than never! You can store your watermelon in the refigerator for 2 to 3 weeks. If you cut into it, wrap the cut side in plastic to prevent it from drying out or absorbing other flavors from the refrigerator.

The sweet corn was picked this morning and will be the sweetest eaten today! It is so tender you can eat it raw or quickly boiled and topped with butter, salt, and even lime is delicious! It stores well in the refrigerator but the sooner you get to it, the better it will be.

We have gorgeous broccoli and lacinato kale again this week. The new fields and the weather have been very kind to our brassica plantings this season and I have been continually been amazed with their quality and abundance this season. This is a nice change from our previous two hot and dry summers that were less than kind to these crops.

Around the fields we have been busy cover cropping bare ground for the winter which protects our soil from erosion and adds organic matter and nitrogen when tilled in in the spring. We have a large section of our fields in fallow this year with standing cover crop that was allowed to go to seed ths year. It is amazing how much bird and wildlife this has been supporting this season and its nice to know we can provide some benefical areas for birds and other wildlife to take refuge. On my last field walk I noticed a flock of California Quail, several types of sparrow ( that are very difficult for me to ID without binoculars) as well as Turkey Vultures and Killdeer.

We are also prepping ground for our 2017 garlic crop. I always enjoy the planning and planting of garlic because it puts me in touch with other interesting farmers in our area as I procure seed stock,  and it also represents the first crops of the next season to be planted. I guess it means we will be doing this again next year!

Have a great week,

 

Asha

 

 

Fried Squash Blossoms with Corn and Mozzarella: mix ¼ lb fresh mozzarella cut into ¼ inch dice, kernels from 1 ear fresh corn, 1 tbsp minced red onion, 1 tsp minced fresh garlic and ¼ tsp each sea salt and pepper. Gently stuff 18 zucchini or butternut squash blossoms with about 1 ½ tsp of the filling and twist ends of the petals closed. Pour canola oil into a medium, heavy pot or saucepan about 3 in deep. Heat over med-high heat until a deep fry thermometer registers 360 to 375. Put a ½ cup each buttermilk and rice flour in separate containers (loaf pans work well). One at a time dip each stuffed blossom into buttermild and let excess drip off. Dip in flour, coating lightly but evenly. Shake off excess flour and fry blossoms in small batches until golden brown, 45 seconds to 1 minute. Gently submerge blossoms with a slotted spoon to cook tops. Drain on paper towels. Season with salt, sprinkle with chives, parsley or basil and serve with lemon wedges if you like.  ( From Sunset August 2013)

Corn Chowder with Wild Rice: remove the kernels from 4 ears fresh sweet corn, reserve. In a stock pot over medium heat, combine the halved cobs of the corn and 7 cups of water, and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove cobs with tongs and discard; reserve stock. In a stockpot over medium heat, cook 6 slices diced thick cut bacon, stirring often, until cooked through but not crisp. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Add 1 peeled and diced large carrot, 1 large red onion, diced. And 3 tbsp butter. Season with ½ tsp salt and cook until carrot and onion soften, about 15 minutes. Add 4 minced cloves of garlic and 2 tsp fresh minced rosemary, and cook for 1 minute. Add corn kernels, 5 cups of reserved corn stock, ¼ tsp pepper,  and 1 tsp salt and bring to a simmer. Transfer half a cup of soup to a blender and puree until smooth. Using a fine mesh sieve, transfer pureed soup back into stock pot. Stir in 3 cups cooked wild rice and reserved bacon into soup. Serve immediately.

Kale Caesar Salad: Preheat oven to 300. For croutons, mince 2 garlic cloves, in a medium saucepan warm ¼ cup olive oil and the minced garlic over low heat; remove. Add 4 cups bread cubed into 1 inch pieces. Sprinkle with ¼ tsp salt. Stir to coat. Spread bread pieces in a single layer on a shallow baking pan. Bake 20 minutes or until crisp and golden brown, stirring once. Cool completely. Meanwhile, for the dressing, in a blender combine 4 cloves garlic, ½ cup olive oil, 6 anchovy filets, ¼ cup lemon juice, 1 tbsp Dijon mustard, and 2 egg yolks. Blend until smooth. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Remove stems from 3 large bunches of lacinato kale and thinly slice the leaves. Add the dressing, and using your hands work the dressing into the kale. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. To serve, sprinkle with 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese and top with croutons.

 

Watermelon, Cucumber and Lime Salad

Watermelon

Cucumber

Salad greens

Feta

Lime, zest and juice

Olive oil

Agave

Salt and pepper

 

Toss watermelon slices, cucumber slices, salad greens and diced feta with lime zest, juice, olive oil, agave syrup, salt and pepper to taste. Correct seasoning.

The previous two recipes are from our NE Portland dropsite host Santha Cassel!

 

Watermelon Margaritias: bring ½ cup sugar and ½ cup water and 3 strips of orange zest to a boil in a small saucepan. Simmer and stir until the sugar is dissolved about 3 min. remove from heat and allow to cool completely. Place 2 cups peeled and seeded watermelon in a blender and pulse until pureed. Stir watermelon puree into a large pitcher with ¾ cup white tequila, the simple syrup and ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice. Place a small amount of salt or sugar on a saucer. Moisten glass rim with lime juice and press into the salt or sugar to coat the rime. Fill glasses with ice cubes and pour margarita mix over the ice. Serve with additional lime wedges.

 

Cherry Tomato Galette with Corn and Zucchini

Serves 4 to 6 as a main or 8 as an appetizer or side dish

For the pastry:

1 1/4 cups (160 grams) all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon table salt

8 tablespoons (4 ounces or 113 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces and chill again

1/4 cup (60 grams) plain yogurt or sour cream

2 teaspoons (10 ml) fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup (60 ml) ice water

For the filling:

1 tablespoon (15 ml) olive oil

1/4 teaspoon coarse Kosher or sea salt

3 cups (about 450 grams) cherry or grape tomatoes

1 ear corn, cut from the cob (about 1 cup)

1 small (8 ounces or 225 grams) zucchini or summer squash, diced

1 bundle (3 to 4 ounces or 85 to 115 grams) scallions, thinly sliced

1/2 cup (2 ounces or 55 grams) grated parmesan

Glaze:1 egg yolk beaten with 1 teaspoon water

Make dough: Whisk stir the flour and salt in a large bowl. Sprinkle bits of butter over dough and using a pastry blender or your fingertips, work it into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse meal, with the biggest pieces of butter the size of tiny peas. In a small bowl, stir together the sour cream, lemon juice and water and add this to the butter-flour mixture. With your fingertips or a wooden spoon, mix in the liquid until large lumps form. Pat the lumps into a ball. Wrap with plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour, or up to 2 days.

Make filling: Get down the saute pan with the lid. If you don’t have one, any large lid will do. Add olive oil, tomatoes, salt and a pinch of red pepper flakes (if that’s your thing) to your saute pan then cover and heat over high heat. Roll the tomatoes around from time to time so that they’ll cook evenly. In a few minutes, you’ll hear some putts and pops as the tomatoes burst a little. When most have, remove lid, turn heat down to medium and add zucchini chunks. Saute for two minutes, until they soften. Add corn and cook one minute. Add scallions, just stirring them in, then turn off heat. Adjust seasonings if needed. Transfer mixture to a large plate and spread it out, so that it will cool faster. You want it cooled to at least lukewarm before assembling the galette.

Assemble galette: Heat oven to 400 degrees. On a floured counter, roll the dough out into a 12-inch round and it really doesn’t need to be perfectly shaped. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet; I like to fold my dough gently, without creasing, in quarters then unfold it onto the baking pan. Sprinkle tomato-zucchini-corn mixture with half of parmesan and spoon the mixture into the center of the dough, leaving a 2-inch border. If any liquid has puddle in plate, try to leave it there as you spoon. Sprinkle with almost all of remaining parmesan, leaving a pinch or two behind for the crust. Fold the border over the filling, pleating the edge to make it fit. The center will be open. Brush crust with egg yolk glaze. Sprinkle glaze with last pinches of parmesan.

Bake the galette: For 30 to 40 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes, then slide the galette onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve hot, warm or at room temperature.