Wobbly Cart Farm CSA Box #4
Large Shares: butter head lettuce, 1 ½ lbs shell peas, 1 bunch fresh dill, Swiss chard, 1 lb broccoli shoots, 1 bunch radishes, kohlrabi, fresh sweet briar fire garlic, 1 lb new potatoes, 1 bunch fresh French lavender.
Small Shares: Romaine lettuce, 1 bunch fresh dill, 1 lb shell peas, Swiss chard, 1/3 lb snow peas, fresh sweet briar fire garlic, ½ lb new potatoes
Dear CSA members,
As the dust subsides from CSA packing this morning, I’m sitting in the breezeway of the barn taking a quick break. The crew is working around me, continuing the day’s tasks; some are weeding, Brian is weed whacking the tall weeds around the loading dock, and Adam (new to our crew this year) is washing last weeks’ CSA boxes. I’ve got a little coffee left and a few minutes to reflect on this week at Wobbly Cart.
It seems like it was a busy week for us. And we can look back in satisfaction that we accomplished a lot! Garlic was harvested last Wednesday. It’s always a big job, but kind of fun because it only happens once a year. The whole crew of 8 people, including Joe and myself teamed up to dig the beds with the tractor digger bar (see our video on Facebook). Then everyone worked together to pull the plants from the loosened soil and stack them in piles to be graded and cleaned lightly. Then it was all hauled to the barn and greenhouse for curing.
There has been a lot of catch up to do with weeding and seeding, as well as pruning and trellising the tomatoes. In our large high tunnel cherry tomatoes are ripening, hopefully CSA will get a taste of them next week! That would be a record early harvest for us if it does happen. I have spent many hours pruning and grooming the plants. Not to mention protecting them from our resident deer. It seems they are getting really interested in the vegetables in the high tunnels right now. I have had to apply an organically approved deer repellent twice within the last 30 days. Yesterday, I chased a doe out of the tomatoes twice, only to have her go into the summer squash tunnel moments later!!! Getting a little too bold for comfort.
I hope you enjoy this week’s box. I had just enough French Lavender to give the large shares another bundle, tons of peas are happening. The garlic is a variety called Sweet Briar Fire. We got the seed from Carol of Sweet Briar Farm in Chehalis. It’s nice and large, easy to peel and very tasty. Remember this is fresh garlic and should be used up as soon as possible. Also new this week is Swiss chard, a green that is probably familiar to you all. Chard is delicious sautéed, thrown into scrambled eggs and quiches, stir-fried, added to fried rice etc. It is very high in vitamins, minerals and fiber and is therefore super healthy! And last but not least, new potatoes are making their first appearance. These tiny red potatoes are extremely tender and their skins show it! It is hard for us to harvest and wash them without peeling the delicate skin a little. Don’t let the slightly peeling skin deter you from their deliciousness! Just give them a quick scrub before cooking. Also. Store these in your refrigerator, as they are fresh and not cured for storage. They wont take long to steam and then dress with garlic, melted butter and fresh dill! That’s how I fixed them the other night and they were fantastic. Fresh dill is one of my favorite herbs. To me it’s so sweet, tender and indescribable! Love it with new potatoes, added to salads, dressings, soups, and breads. Store it similarly to cilantro and parsley with the ends stuck into a jar of water and a plastic bag tented over the top.
That’s going to be all for this week. Thank you all for joining our CSA! Please keep those payments coming. And keep those boxes coming back to the drop sites. We all need to work together to make this CSA work!! Also, thank you all who ordered bulk quantities of shell peas. You will find your order at the drop site!
Asha, Joe and the Crew at Wobbly Cart
Kohlrabi Home Fries: Peel 1 ½ to 2 lbs kohlrabi and cut into thick sticks, about 1/3 to ½ inch wide and about 2 inches long. Heat 2 to 4 tbsp canola or grapeseed oil over med-high heat in a heavy skillet (cast iron is the best). Meanwhile, place 1 tbsp rice, chickpea or semolina flour in a large bowl, season with salt to taste and quickly toss the kohlrabi slices in the flour so that they are lightly coated. When the oil in rippling, carefully add the kohlrabi to the pan in batches so that the pan isn’t crowded. Cook on one side until browned. About 2 to 3 minutes. Then, using tongs, turn the pieces over to brown on the other side for another 2 to 3 minutes. The procedure should only take about 5 minutes if there is enough oil in the pan. Drain on paper towels, then sprinkle right away with the seasoning of your choice ( chili powder, curry powder, cumin or paprika). Very satisfying and healthy! (from NY times).
Lemon-Dill Shrimp and Pasta: Rinse 12oz frozen shrimp; pat dry with paper towel. Finely shred 1 tsp peel from a whole lemon; set aside. Juice the lemon; set aside the juice. Cook 8 oz dried fettuccine according to the package directions. Meanwhile, in a 12 in skillet heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Cook 4 clove thinly sliced green garlic in hot oil for 1 minute. Add shrimp; cook for 3 to 4 minutes; turning frequently until shrimp are opaque. Add 6 cups baby spinach (substitute chard or beet tops?) and drained pasta; toss until the greens begin to wilt. Stir in ½ tsp Italian seasoning (fresh rosemary?), lemon peel, and 2 tbsp lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper and top with plenty of fresh dill. Makes 4 servings. (from the April 2012 issue of Better Homes and Gardens)
Broccoli and Chickpea Dal: Put 2 cups rinsed dried chickpeas in a large pot, add water to cover by 2 inches, and soak overnight. Drain. Next day: pulse about ½ the chickpeas in a food processor with about ¼ cup fresh water until coarsely chopped. Pour into pot used for soaking. Repeat with the remaining chickpeas, more water and 2 to 3 serrano chilies, coarsely chopped. Add 1 qt veg or chicken broth, 1 cup water, 1 ½ tsp turmeric, 1 tsp cumin, and ¾ tsp salt. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat and simmer until chickpeas are tender, stirring occasionally, 40 to 50 minutes. Meanwhile, cook 2 medium onions, thinly sliced, in 3 tbsp vegetable oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until deep golden, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir ¾ lb broccoli, peeled, sliced into 1 to ½ inche pieces and florets, into the chickpeas, return to simmering and cook until tender, about 12 minutes. Stir 4 tsp black mustard seeds, 1 ½ tsp whole cumin seeds, and ¼ tsp salt into the onions and cook over medium high heat, stirring, until cumin turns a shade darker, 2 minutes. Set aside about 1/3 of the mixture and stir the rest into the dal. Ladle dal over hot cooked basmati rice or quinoa into bowls and top with the reserved onion mixture. Add more salt and chilies to taste. ( from Sunset magazine February 2012)
Herbed New Potatoes: Melt 4 tbsp unsalted butter in a large dutch oven. Add 2 ½ lbs whole new potatoes, scrubbed but not peeled, 2 tsp kosher salt, and ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper and toss well. Cover the pot tightly and cook over low heat for 20 to 30 minutes, until the potatoes are just tender when tested with a small knife. From time to time shake the pot without removing the lid to prevent the bottom potatoes from burning. Turn off the heat and allow the potatoes to steam for another 5 minutes. Don’t over cook! Toss with 3 tbsp chopped mixed fresh herbs such as parsley, chives, dill or rosemary. Serve hot.
Veggie Frittata: Beat 8 eggs and ½ cup milk. Pour into an oiled oven-proof skillet over medium heat. Promptly add chopped chard, kale, thinly sliced potato, garlic or onion to taste. Stir to evenly combine veggies and eggs. At this point you can add feta or other cheese if desired. Cook on low without stirring until the eggs are mostly set, then transfer to an oven and broil for 2 to 4 minutes, until lightly golden on top. Cool to set before serving.