Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #18
Large Shares: Lettuce, Potatoes, Yellow Onion, Beets, Italian Parsley, Spaghetti Squash, Carrots, Rutabaga, Red Cabbage, Fennel, Hot Chile Peppers, Escarole, Garlic
Small Shares: Watermelon Radishes, Parsnips, Lettuce, Beets, Spaghetti Squash, Italian Parsley, Yellow Onion, Garlic
Dear CSA members,
We have arrived at the last CSA delivery for the summer season! What a gorgeous day to celebrate the closing of your 18- week journey with us. A perfect fall afternoon unfolds as I finally sit down here to write a bit after a very hectic morning. I truly hope you have enjoyed the produce this year, and have found yourselves happier and healthier for it.
With the break in the weather we have been busier than ever wrapping up some very important fall tasks. Garlic will be planted this week and a lot of vetch and rye cover crop will be planted in our fields, in all areas where the crops have been harvested and are out of the fields.
Also, I just met with Ryan from the Whitewood Cider Company who toured the fields with me looking for apples for their cider press this fall. There is such an abundance of old orchards around our valley it’s exciting to find some outlets for the tons of fruit that is hanging on trees right now! Ryan pointed out some interesting cider varieties that are hidden in the hedge rows around the farm and we did a little taste testing and assessment of ripeness. Really cool, and I learned a few things. I plan to pick Jonagolds and Akanes from my orchard for the first box of the Fall CSA this Monday, then, the rest will be for cider and drying!
As far as the produce this week we do have a few new crops to explain:
Spaghetti Squash: this large yellow football shaped squash is an excellent substitute for pasta. 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.
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.
Escarole: these hardy and bitter greens are one of our fall and winter stars. Escarole is much like lettuce in texture but adds a very nice bitterness that pairs well with sweet flavors of fruit and balsamic vinegar. You can also grill or braise them and then dress with a vinaigrette. I have also heard that soaking the greens in water for a few hours will reduce some of the bitterness if so desired.
Also, a quick note about potatoes. It seems that some of the beds that did not get dug before our huge rainstorm got some blight on the tubers. It has been very laborious sorting through them. But thought you might want to know this is not our normal quality for potatoes!
That’s going to be all. Thank you so much for supporting local organic agriculture! It has been a pleasure growing and harvesting for you. Please remember to return your boxes to the drop site if you will not be joining us for the fall csa option.
Asha, Joe and the crew at Wobbly Cart
Carrot Souffle: heat oven to 350. Butter a 2 to 2 ½ qt shallow casserole dish. Cut 2 lbs carrots into ¼ in rounds (6 ½ cups). Cover carrots with about 1 inch of salted water in large pot. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat and simmer until carrots are very tender when pierced with a fork. About 15 minutes. Drain carrots and transfer to a food processor. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl. Stir in 1 cup whole milk, 1 cup saltine crumbs, ¾ cup grated sharp cheddar cheese, 1/3 cup minced onion, 1 tbsp unsalted butter, 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp kosher salt, and ¼ tsp black pepper. Beat 3 large eggs in an large bowl until foamy. Fold into carrot mixture. Bake in prepared dish until puffed and light golden brown, about 40 minutes. Turn oven to broil. Broil 8 inches from heat until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve warm.
Garlic Roasted Root vegetables: Split 1 lb carrots in half lengthwise. Quarter 1 lb of peeled parsnips lengthwise. In a Dutch oven bring salted water to boiling. Add carrots and parsnips and simmer for 5 minutes; drain. In a very large skillet heat 1 tbsp vegetable oil over medium heat. Add 3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced and cook until fragrant and beginning to brown. Add carrots, parsnips, and 8 oz mini cipollini onions, peeled to skillet. Cook and stir for 5 minutes or until coated in oil and beginning to soften. Sprinkle with salt and ground black pepper. Roast for 30 minutes covered with foil at 350 degrees.
Roasted Winter Squash and Beet salad: Preheat oven to 400. Tightly wrap 1 lb small beets in aluminum foil bundles. Place on middle shelf of oven. Roast 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until tender when tested with a sharp knife. Remove from oven; cool slightly. Peel beets and set aside. Place the slices of 1 ¼ lb of winter squash (delicata or butternut) on a rimmed baking sheet. Toss with salt, pepper, and 1 tbsp olive oil. Place on middle shelf in oven; roast 15 minutes. Drizzle 1/3 cup maple syrup over the squash, and roast another 10 minutes, or until tender; cool. To make the dressing: in a small bowl whisk 1 tsp Dijon mustard, ¼ cup fresh lemon juice, and ¼ cup maple syrup together. Add 1/3 cup olive oil and whisk until smooth. Season to taste. To assemble, place 3 cups mixed salad greens in the middle of a large plate. Arrange beets and squash on the greens. Pour half of dressing over salad. Sprinkle with 1/3 cup fresh pomegranate seeds. Pass remaining dressing. Serves 6 to 8.
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.
And here’s a great Spaghetti Squash recipe shared by Lisa Little: