Wobbly Cart Farm CSA week 5

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7-10-18

Large shares: French lavender, Italian parsley, lettuce, purplette onions, beets, snow peas, kohlrabi, summer squash

Small shares: French lavender, Italian parsley, purplette onions, carrots, shell peas

Greens share: turnips, lacinato kale, lettuce

Roots share: beets, carrots, turnips

Juicing share: green cabbage, carrot 2nds, beet 2nds, Italian parsley, lacinato kale

 

Hello everyone,

It has been a very busy start to our week at Wobbly Cart. We have been putting in some long hours as things are starting to ramp up a notch around here. We begin the add-on shares this week and also start twice weekly deliveries to our wholesale customers.

If you ordered an odd on share or juicing share you will find them at your dropsite in a separate box labeled with your name. Greens shares have a green dot, roots shares a red dot, and the juicing shares will have a blue dot.

Out in the fields the shell pea planting is coming on, garlic is almost all harvested and I saw and tasted ripening cherry tomatoes in the green house as well as the field! Also, the potatoes are flowering which means new potatoes in the near future.

I had the pleasure of harvesting the lavender rows yesterday! It is always one of my favorite jobs of the year to harvest and bunch the wonderfully fragrant flowers. These plants are over 6 years old and it is hard to believe- still producing!

French lavender: Both shares will receive a bunch of French lavender this week. You can keep the lavender as a flower arrangement, dry the blossoms and use it for teas and sachets, or cook with it. I have used lavender to make cookies, ice cream, and even for a honey lavender glaze for roast chicken. You can toss the stalks on the grill to add flavor and aroma to grilled meats. Lavender is a known medicinal herb with soothing and relaxing properties as well. I love this variety for its long full flower spikes and heady fragrance. Enjoy!

Shell peas: For those who don’t know the shell peas are the large, long, thick pods. You break these open to reveal the tiny little peas inside. Shell them out with your thumb into a bowl. 1 lb will get you about 1 cup of fresh peas. They are excellent just lightly steamed with a sea salt and butter. Overcooking may turn them to mush!

Italian parsley (which is also known as flat parsley or flat-leaf parsley) has dark flat leaves and slender stems, with a bright and slightly bitter flavor. Amazingly, the stems have more flavor and aroma than the leaves! Parsley stems are one of the traditional ingredients in the bouquet garni and sachet d’epices, which are used for flavoring stocks, soups and sauces. Parsley is also very nutritious and is very high in, iron, calcium, folate, and vitamin K, C and A.

Purplette onions: are a yummy and cute spring onion that is a nice change from scallions this time of year. You can cook them just like regular onions, roast them whole with your beets and garlic, add fresh to salads, or pickle them. The tops can be used like scallions but are a bit stronger in flavor.

Kohlrabi: this bulbous member of the same family as broccoli and cabbage is amazingly delicious when peeled. The inside is very tender, sweet and crisp. You can eat raw, grate it into a salad or slaw or saute with olive oil and garlic. greens are also edible and are good sauteed. You should separate the greens and store the root for a week or more, and greens for a couple of days.

Have a great week,

Asha

 

Italian Style Salsa Verde: In a small bowl, combine ½ cup coarsely chopped Italian Parsley, ¼ cup each coarsely chopped chives, fennel fronds, or dill, mint leaves, tarragon and shallots; 2 tbsp finely chopped capers; 2 tsp coarsely chopped sage leaves, and ¾ tsp kosher salt. Whisk in 1 ¼ cups fruity extra virgin olive oil. Taste and adjust salt. Chill overnight if possible, so flavors can marry. Makes 1 ¾ cups.

Lavender and Honey Roasted Chicken: In a non-reactive bowl combine; 1 tbsp fresh thyme, 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, 1 tsp fresh lavender, ½ cup honey, 1 ½ tsp fresh marjoram, 1 minced garlic clove. 1 minced shallot, ¼ cup aged balsamic vinegar and stir thoroughly. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Season a whole roasting chicken with salt and pepper. Roast the chicken for 30 minutes. Baste the chicken with the lavender honey mixture every 5 minutes or so for an additional 30 minutes or until completely cooked. The bird is done when a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees. Do not overcook. Once finished you can brush additional marinade over the flesh and skin. (from food.com)

Tabbouleh: Cook 4 cups coarse bulgur or quinoa, and cool slightly. Combine bulgur or quinoa, 1 large grated carrot, 2 cups tightly packed fresh Italian parsley leaves and 2 tbsp dried currants. In a jar combine, 3 tbsp olive oil, 4 tbsp of lemon juice, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 large clove roasted garlic, 1/3 cup fresh mint, minced, 1 tbsp lemon zest, and ½ tsp sea salt. Shake well to blend. Pour the dressing over the bulgur mixture and toss to thoroughly coat the grains. Taste and add more olive oil, lemon juice, mint or salt as needed.

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).

Summer Squash, white bean, and pesto soup:

Saute chopped onion and cubed summer squash in olive oil with salt and pepper until tender. Add chicken or vegetable broth, drained and rinsed canned white beans, and chopped fresh oregano and parsley. Bring to simmer. Top with a dollop of homemade pesto.

Lavender Tea Cookies: Ahead of time: prepare lavender frosting and set aside: combine 1 cup powdered sugar, 1 tbsp dried lavender flowers, let sit for 1 day, then strain out the flowers and combine the powdered sugar with 2 tbsp milk, and 2 tsp corn syrup. Set the frosting aside. Then, with a mortar and pestle grind 1 tbsp dried lavender flowers. In a medium bowl cream together 1 cup butter at room temp, 2/3 cup sugar, 1 tsp vanilla extract, ¼ tsp lemon extract. Add 2 cups flour and 1/8 tsp salt. Mix until combined. Dough should be together, but not sticky. Refrigerate 1 to 2 hours or until firm. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove dough from frig. On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough to ¼ inch thick. Cut into desired shapes with cookie cutters and place on ungreased baking sheets. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. Remove from pan and cool on wire cooling racks. When cool frost with lavender frosting. Makes 2 dozen.  (from whatscookingamerica.net)

 

Roasted Beet Crostini: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Trim greens from 1 bunch beets, reserving stems and greens. Place beets in a baking pan, cover with foil, and roast until tender when pierced with a knife, 45 minutes to 1 ½ hours, depending on size of beets, uncover and let cool. Reduce oven temperature to 350. While beets cool, arrange 16 ½ inch slices of baguette in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Bake, turning slices over once halfway through, until toasted but not browned, about 14 minutes. Thinly slice beet green stems and finely chop leaves; keep stems and leaves separate. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add stems and cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Add greens, 1 tbsp sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar, 2 tbsp water and cook, stirring occasionally, until greens are tender and liquid had evaporated, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in ¼ tsp salt and remove from heat. Peel cooled beets and cut into 1-inch pieces. Place ¾ cup beet pieces, 4 oz creamy goat cheese and ¼ tsp freshly ground pepper in a food processor and puree until smooth (reserve remaining beets for another use).  To assemble crostini, spread about 2 tsp beet-cheese spread on each slice of toasted baguette and top with sautéed greens. (lifescript.com)

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Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #5

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7-12-16

Large shares: Carrots, Shell peas, Purplette onions, Green cabbage, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Fresh garlic, Eggplant, French Lavender

Small shares: Carrots, Snow or Shell peas, Purplette onions, Green cabbage, Kohlrabi, Lettuce 

Dear CSA members,

Well, its a little bit cool and cloudy around here! It has been a sharp contrast to last summers intense heat and drought. I’m ok with it, it kind of feels back to normal, and it is much easier to do manual labor when it is 60 -70 degrees than when it is 90 – 100. Normally,  this kind of weather usually leaves us after the 4th of July but this year it seems to be sticking around. But hey, this weater is great for cabbage, and we have some ginormous cabbages this week!

 

We completed the epic garlic harvest this week and hauled it all to our big barn to dry. We have all the varieties laid out with fans blowing on them to circulate the air and allow the heads to cure for storage.

Despite the cool damp weather I have caught sight of some ripening in the tomato patch and we have a first round of adorable little eggplants ready for the large shares this week! We will also almost definetly have new potatoes next week, who hoo!

We finally have peas for you! The first two plantings this year sustained heavy damage at seeding time from a pest called the “seedcorn maggot”. So there has been some delay in getting them to you but we are into the third planting now and things are looking good. I think we are on the produce upswing at this point and making the harvest lists will get lot more fun and exciting because we will have alot more variety to choose from.

Shell peas are the large, long, thick pods. You break these open to reveal the tiny little peas inside ( the pods are not edible). Shell them out with your thumb into a bowl. 1 lb will get you about 1 cup of fresh peas. They are excellent just lightly steamed with a sea salt and butter. Overcooking may turn them to mush! The small shares will receive either ½ lb of snow peas or a lb of shell peas, we came up a bit short in the harvest .The snow peas are the large flat pods. Snow peas are excellent for stir- fries and salads, you just snap off the stem end and pull the string to prepare. Farm fresh peas are one of the great benefits of buying local and farm direct, these are specialty items that you just can’t find outside of CSA or Farmers Markets.

 

This time of year we are also completing our last rounds of seeding and transplanting for the fall crops such as cabbages, rutabaga, broccoli, chicory, fall carrots. Once we are done with planting we can fully turn our attention to cultivating, harvesting and selling produce.

Have a great week,

Asha

 

 

Joie de vivre Lavender Infused Carrot Ginger Soup: Soak ½ cup lavender in ½ c. warm water for 15 minutes. Strain well, discard flowers and place water in a blender. Add 3 1/2 cups fresh carrot juice, ½ c macadamia nuts, ¼ cup avocado, mashed, 2 tbsp fresh ginger, juiced, 2 tbsp tamari, 1 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice. Blend until smooth. Add ½ tsp fresh dill, a pinch cayenne pepper, sea salt to taste, and black pepper ground to taste. Garnish with grated carrots, beets, zucchini, jicama or radishes. Enjoy cold or at room temperature.

Coleslaw: julienne 4 cups green cabbage, grate 1 cup of carrots, add in 2 tsp peeled and minced fresh ginger. Place in a large bowl and mix well. In a small bowl whisk 1 cup mayonnaise, 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice, 1 tbsp stone ground mustard, 1 tsp minced fresh dill, 1 tsp celery seed, ¼ tsp sea salt, ½ tsp black pepper, pinch of cayenne pepper and 2 tbsp tamari. Combine all ingredients, toss well and enjoy.

Lavender and Honey Roasted Chicken: In a non-reactive bowl combine; 1 tbsp fresh thyme, 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, 1 tsp fresh lavender, ½ cup honey, 1 ½ tsp fresh marjoram, 1 minced garlic clove. 1 minced shallot, ¼ cup aged balsamic vinegar and stir thoroughly. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Season a whole roasting chicken with salt and pepper. Roast the chicken for 30 minutes. Baste the chicken with the lavender honey mixture every 5 minutes or so for an additional 30 minutes or until completely cooked. The bird is done when a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees. Do not overcook. Once finished you can brush additional marinade over the flesh and skin. (from food.com)

Fresh Pea Salad: Combine ¾ cup fresh shell peas (shelled), ½ cup diced carrots, ¼ cup diced red bell pepper, ¼ finely chopped fresh cilantro, 2 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice, 2 Tbsp flax oil (you could also use extra-virgin olive oil) and ½ tsp sea salt in a large mixing bowl and mix well.

Peas with Prosciutto and Onions: heat in a large skillet over medium heat: 3 tbsp olive oil, add and brown slightly 1 cup thinly sliced purplette onion,  Add 3 tbsp water, cover and cook over low heat until the onions are tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in: 2 cups fresh shell peas, shelled, 4 oz prosciutto or ham, finely diced, 1 to 2 tsp water. Cover and cook until tender, 5 to 8 minutes.

Ratatouille Provencal: Heat in a large skillet or Dutch oven over high heat; ¼ cup olive oil. Add and cook, stirring, until golden and just tender, 10 to 12 minutes: 1 medium Eggplant, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks, and 1 lb zucchini, cut into 1 inch chunks. Remove the vegetables to a plate and reduce the heat to medium high. Add and cook, stirring, until the onions are slightly softened: 2 tbsp olive oil and 1-½ cups sliced onions. Add a cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender but not browned, 8 to 12 minutes: 2 large red bell peppers, cut into 1-inch chunks, 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Add: 1 ½ cups peeled, seeded, chopped fresh tomatoes, or one 14 oz can diced tomatoes, drained. 2 to 3 sprigs fresh thyme, and 1 bay leaf. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook for 5 minutes. Add the eggplant and zucchini and cook until everything is tender, about 20 minutes more. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Stir in ¼ cup chopped fresh basil and chopped pitted black olives if desired. From the Joy of Cooking.

Pickled Cabbage: Fill a saucepan with water and bring to the boil. Core a cabbage and chop into large pieces, you will need about 4 cups. Add the cabbage to the boiling water and cook for 30 seconds, then drain in a colander. Let cool to room temperature. When cool enough to handle squeeze leaves to soften them and release some water. Meanwhile, combine3/4 cup vinegar, ½ cup sugar, and 2 tsp salt. Bring to a boil to dissolve sugar, and pour into a bowl to cool. When cool, add the cabbage and toss to coat well. Pour all of this into a jar with a tight fitting lid. Refrigerate for 2 days, turning the jar occasionally to coat all the leaves with the brine. Serve cold.

Smoky Eggplant Raita: Heat your grill t o 450 to 550 degrees with an area left clear or turned off for indirect heat. Peirce 1 lb of eggplant in several places with a knife. Grill Eggplant over indirect heat, covered, until very tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Let stand until cool enough to touch. Meanwhile, toast about ½ tsp of cumin in a small dry frying pan over med. Heat until fragrant and beginning to darken, 2 to 3 minutes. Pound fine with a motar and pestle. Warm 1 tbsp olive oil in pan over medium heat. Saute ¼ large onion for 3 minutes. Add 1 lg minced garlic clove and continue to sauté until both are softened, about 2 min more. Let cool slightly. Slit the eggplant lengthwise and scrape flesh from the skin. Chop flesh coarsely and set aside. Combine 1 cup whole milk yogurt, the onion mixture, 2 tbsp chopped cilantro, ¼ tsp sugar. Add eggplant and stir gently. Season to taste with coarse sea salt and cayenne pepper. Garnish with a little more cilantro. From the September 2010 issue of Sunset

 

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #4

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7-5-16

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #4

Large shares: Tokyo turnips, Purplette onions, 2 heads fresh garlic, green cabbage, romaine lettuce, Italian parsley, kohlrabi, beets, French lavender

Small shares; Tokyo turnips, Purplette onions, fresh garlic, butterhead lettuce, mustard greens, Italian parsley, summer squash, French lavender

Dear CSA members,

I hope you have all had a nice holiday weekend and are ready to get back into the CSA routine. We have several new items to introduce this week. Tokyo turnips are a mild, tender and juicy variety of turnip. They taste like a cross between a radish and a turnip and you can enjoy both the greens and the roots. Most if not all root vegetables will store better if you separate the roots from the greens before wrapping and placing in the crisper drawer. Tokyo turnips are delicious raw in salads, sliced to eat with dips as well as cooked in miso soups, stir fries, and marinated in vinegar and salt for quick pickles. The greens are tender and spicy and can be prepared as other cooking greens.

Purplette onions: are a yummy and cute spring onion that is a nice change from scallions this time of year. You can cook them just like regular onions, roast them whole with your beets and garlic, add fresh to salads, or pickle them. The tops can be used like scallions but are a bit stronger in flavor.

French lavender: Both shares will receive a bunch of French lavender this week. You can keep the lavender as a flower arrangement, dry it and use it for teas and sachets, or cook with it. I have used lavender to make cookies, ice cream, and even for a honey lavender glaze for roast chicken. You can toss the stalks on the grill to add flavor and aroma to grilled meats. Lavender is a known medicinal herb with soothing and relaxing properties as well. I love this variety for its long full flower spikes and heady fragrance. Enjoy!

Next week we should have peas!

Have a great week,

Asha

 

Spicy Cabbage Slaw: combine the zest and juice of one lime, 1 tsp cider vinegar, 1 tbsp sugar, ½ tsp salt, 1/3 cup canola oil, 2 hot chilies (stemmed and seeded), 1 plump garlic clove, chopped, ½ cup packed cilantro leaves in a food processor and process until well combined. Mix 4 cups thinly sliced cabbage, 1 cup shredded carrots, ½ cup thinly sliced red onion, and freshly ground black pepper. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours but preferably overnight before serving.

Lavender Herb Butter This herb butter is good for toasted cheese sandwiches, veggies, boiled potatoes, or noodles.1 stick softened butter,1 tsp. Chopped chives, 2 tsp. dried lavender. (I pulse a batch ahead in my coffee grinder), 1tsp. chopped parsley. Mix together.

Lavender Coffee Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Make the topping: 1 cup chopped walnuts, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 3 tsp. cinnamon. Mix together and set aside. Make the batter: 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 tbs. baking powder, 1 tsp. salt, mix and set aside. Cream ¾ cup butter,  add in 1 cup sugar, 2 tsp dried lavender buds (pulse this in blender with ½ cup of the above sugar), ½ cup brown sugar, 3 eggs, 1 ½ cups buttermilk or sour cream or thin yogurt, and 2 tsp vanilla extract. Put in pan. (See below) Put half of the batter into your pan, top with 1/2 of the topping. Swirl it in gently with a fork so it is just lightly blended. Repeat.

Pan sizes and baking times.
One 10-inch tube pan or Bundt pan 50 to 60 minutes.
One 9-inch spring form pan for 60 to 70 minutes.
Two 4 1/2 x 8 1/2 inch loaf pans for 40 to 50 minutes.
Two 8-inch round or square cake pans for 30 to 35 minutes.

Bake until done. The top will spring back when pressed gently in middle or use toothpick or knife in center of cake, if it comes out clean, remove from heat and cool for 10 minutes before you remove it from your pan.

Italian Style Salsa Verde: In a small bowl, combine ½ cup coarsely chopped Italian Parsley, ¼ cup each coarsely chopped chives, fennel fronds, or dill, mint leaves, tarragon and shallots; 2 tbsp finely chopped capers; 2 tsp coarsely chopped sage leaves, and ¾ tsp kosher salt. Whisk in 1 ¼ cups fruity extra virgin olive oil. Taste and adjust salt. Chill overnight if possible, so flavors can marry. Makes 1 ¾ cups.

Quick Sauerkraut: Thinly slice 1 head of cabbage and place in a large microwave safe bowl with 1 ¼ cups apple cider vinegar, 1/3 cup apple cider, 1 tbsp crushed toasted caraway seeds, and 2 tbsp kosher salt. Cover with a large piece of plastic wrap and seal edges. Microwave on high, 4 to 5 minutes. Let sit, still covered, until cabbage has absorbed its brine and bowl is cool to the touch, about 15 minutes. (from Sunset magazine May 2012)

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #7

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7-28-15

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #7

Large shares: chard, new potatoes, salad cucumbers, purplette onion, cilantro, purple bell pepper, snow peas, red tomato, eggplant, garlic, oak leaf lettuce

Small shares: chard, carrots, new potatoes, purplette onions, Italian parsley, ½ pint sungold cherry tomatoes, garlic, shishito peppers

 

Bread and beauty grow best together. Their harmonious integration can make farming not only a business but an art; the land not only a food-factory but an instrument for self-expression, on which each can play music to his own choosing.

Aldo Leopold A Sand County Almanac

 

Dear CSA members,

The week has seemingly flown by as I find myself sitting down to write this weeks’ newsletter! We have certainly enjoyed some cooler temperatures, and crystal clear blue skies this week. The way the grasses and landscape have dried out in the drought I keep thinking this is September… The seasonal fast forward has been a perpetual problem for me this whole season with the unusual weather patterns.

A lot of fall planting got done this last week. We have been transplanting thousands of brassica starts such as cabbage, kale and kohlrabi, as well as seeding the final successions of carrots, beets, turnips and other root crops. I have also seeded a lot of raddichio and endive in the greenhouse, and will continue to seed successions of lettuce for a while yet. It has been nice to bust out all this work in the more reasonable temperatures we have been experiencing.

If you are interested in continuing your CSA share to enjoy these abundant fall harvests we have a fall CSA option available for sign up if you haven’t already done so. The fall share will begin Tuesday October 20th and last for four weeks. The large share is #115 and the small $80. The fall share is great because most of the produce is hardy and will keep for some time so you can enjoy it for several weeks after the deliveries end. Think root crops, leeks, hardy greens, and winter squash.

In the years when we first began farming, our season was essentially over by late October. We didn’t have the land, nor did we plant crops that would last us through the winter months. These days, we are farming and going to market year round, barring a flood or a long stretch of super cold (single digit temperatures) weather! It is kind of awesome to be out in the field harvesting carrots in the dead of winter with just a few folks, often with supplemental light from tractor mounted LED’s and a lot of slippery mud! But it is just so great to be able to produce crops year round.

Meanwhile, the summer harvests are coming on strong as the weather looks like it is going to heat up again this week. The tomato, pepper and eggplant crops are starting to fill up the back room of the cooler. As well as seemingly endless mountains of summer squash and cucumbers! Large shares will get their first tastes of cilantro this week. Normally, we would have plenty of cilantro in the early season, but we had a mix up with old, poorly germinating seed this year so the early plantings were a failure. We also have eggplant, red tomato and bell pepper for the first time.

Small shares will get Sungold cherry tomato and Shihito peppers as new items this week. Shisito peppers are a Japanese frying pepper that is iconic to izakaya (Japanese tapas/appetizers/bar food). They are mild, and prized because they are thin, delicate and thin-skinned and thus blister and char easily in the pan. Occasionally one of the peppers may be spicy instead of mild, but there is no way to tell until you taste it. For many, this is part of the enjoyment, but you may want to taste carefully before you dig in. Usually, a small hole is poked to keep the pepper from bursting and then pan fried whole in oil until wilted and slightly charred. Shisitos are often served as an appetizer with a dipping sauce. I just had some for lunch and they were delicious!

That’s all for this week, enjoy!

Asha, Joe and the crew at Wobbly Cart

 

Blistered Shishito peppers: heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium high heat. Cook peppers, turning occasionally, until they begin to blister on all sides. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve immediately.

Eggplant Caponata: peel and cut into cubes 1 medium (1 lb) eggplant. Sprinkle generously with salt, place in a colander, and let stand for 30 to 60 minutes. Rinse and pat dry. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add 1 cup chopped celery and cook, stirring often, until softened, about four minutes. Add 1 medium onion, finely chopped, 1 garlic clove, minced, and cook, stirring often until onion is soft and lightly colored, about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, remove the vegetables to a bowl; add to the skillet 2 tbsp olive oil. Add the eggplant cubes and cook, stirring constantly, until lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the celery mixture, along with 1 ½ cups canned plum tomatoes, drained and coarsely chopped, 12 green olives, pitted and coarsely chopped, 1 ½ tsp drained capers, 2 tbsp red wine vinegar, 1 tbsp tomato paste, 2 tsp sugar, 1 tsp minced fresh oregano or ¼ tsp dried oregano, 1 tsp salt, and black pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until thickened, about 15 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings with additional salt, pepper, and or vinegar if needed. Remove to a serving bowl, let cool and garnish with 2 tbsp minced parsley.

Cucumber Salad with caramelized onions and herbs: slice onions into ¼ inch thick slices (enough to yield 1 cup) and toss to separate into rings. Have a slotted spoon and double layer of paper towels ready. Heat 2 cups vegetable oil to 275 in a small, deep heavy saucepan and drop in onion rings. Cook onions, stirring often, until they turn a uniform light brown, about 8 to 12 minutes. They’ll brown faster toward the end, so be careful. Lift onions from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Reserve 2 tsp onion oil for vinaigrette; let cool. For the vinaigrette: whisk together 1 tbsp each champagne and rice vinegar, 2 tsp sugar, 2 tbsp lemon juice, ¼ tp salt, and ½ tsp pepper together in a bowl until salt and vinegar dissolve. Add reserved onion oil and 1 tbsp minced onion and whisk well to blend. Season to taste with more salt, pepper and lemon juice. Slice several fresh cucumbers into ¼ inch thick slices with a knife. Toss cucumbers and 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes with vinaigrette. Add 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint, 2 tbsp chopped fresh basil, and 1 tbsp roughly chopped red or green shiso (optional). Arrange salad on a platter and top with finely diced mild cucumber pickles and fried onions.

Moroccan Carrot Dressing: In a blender, process 2 cups carrots, chopped, 2 tomatoes, 1/3 cup flax oil, 1 peeled orange, 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tsp allspice, 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp black pepper until smooth and creamy

Tabbouleh: Cook 4 cups coarse bulgur or quinoa, and cool slightly. Combine bulgur or quinoa, 1 large grated carrot, 2 cups tightly packed fresh Italian parsley leaves and 2 tbsp dried currants. In a jar combine, 3 tbsp olive oil, 4 tbsp of lemon juice, 1 tsp Dijon mustard, 1 large clove roasted garlic, 1/3 cup fresh mint, minced, 1 tbsp lemon zest, and ½ tsp sea salt. Shake well to blend. Pour the dressing over the bulgur mixture and toss to thoroughly coat the grains. Taste and add more olive oil, lemon juice, mint or salt as needed.

Swiss chard with lentils and feta cheese: heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a medium sauce pan. Add 2 cloves chopped garlic, and 2 purplette onions chopped. Sauté until tender. Add in 1 cup brown or green lentils and stir. Add 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 30 min. meanwhile, wash 1 bunch of chard and trim off the stem ends. Chop the stems into ¼ inch pieces, and the leaves into bite sized pieces. In another sauce pan, heat 1 tbsp olive oil, add the chard stems and salt and pepper to taste and sauté until tender, about 5 min. add the chard leaves and cook until wilted, about 2 min. stir in 4 tsp red wine vinegar and the reserved lentil mixture. Sprinkle with about ½ cup feta and more salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm or at room temperature.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wobbly Cart Farm CSA box #4

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“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.” -Robert Louis Stevenson  

 

Large shares: French lavender, lettuce, cucumber, purplette onions, carrots, Italian parsley, red cabbage, chard, shell peas

Small shares: French lavender, Italian parsley, scallions, fresh garlic, red cabbage, summer squash

 

7/7/15

Dear CSA members,

Thank goodness for cooler temperatures! Today is forecast to be dry and sunny, but only 81 degrees. After such a long stretch in the high nineties I feel we are justified in breathing a sigh of relief. I for one, who works often in the greenhouses, have been rising at 430 to work until noon or one and beat the very hottest part of the day. In my propagation house, temperatures have been up to 120 degrees by the afternoon, and that is just too hot. I am familiar with the nausea and headache that comes along with working for more than a few minutes in that kind of heat, and know when to say when! I have also been sneaking out around 730 or 8pm to work until dark to finish up tasks that are still to be done.

The quote by RLS is apt this week: as our work, watering, weeding, and harvest are seemingly endless each day. But there are yet so many seeds to plant! All the fall and winter crops we will be enjoying later in the cold dark months must be planted in July and early August. If we miss this time before the days shorten noticeably the plants are unlikely to size up to a marketable size. I have been trying to keep my head down and get the planting done, and not get too distracted by those ripening peppers, green beans, and cherry tomatoes!

We are almost done harvesting the garlic crop and have some really nice hard neck heads for the small shares. Hard neck garlics have a hard stalk in the center, usually have larger, easier to peel cloves, and a spicier more “garlicky” flavor. Hard neck garlic grows better in colder winter climates whereas the softneck garlic you received last week can tolerate warmer winter temperatures. We are luck in the PNW to be able to grow both types successfully! The soft neck garlic is nice for making garlic braids, has more cloves per head though they are often smaller and harder to peel, and has a lighter more vegetal flavor. For both varieties the flavor will intensify the longer the garlic “cures” after harvest.

Look in the next few weeks to see a transition from peas to green beans, to see pearl and sweet onions, cherry tomatoes, new potatoes and basil. Yum!

Thank you all,

 

Asha, Joe and the crew at Wobbly Cart

 

Shaved Summer Squash with Pecorino Romano: In a large bowl whisk together 1 tbsp lemon juice, 2 tbsp olive oil, and a pinch of sea salt. Using a vegetable peeler or a mandoline, shave a large summer squash into paper thin ribbons, about 1/16 of an inch thick, to yield 3 to 4 cups. Toss the squash ribbons with the dressing and marinate at room temperature for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, shave 2 ounces of Pecorino Romano into thin strips with a vegetable peeler to yield ¾ of  a cup. Add to the squash and toss gently. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more lemon juice if desired. Garnish with thinly sliced basil and freshly ground black pepper.

 

Tabbouleh: Place ½ cup bulgur in a large bowl. Pour in 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice over the bulgur. Set aside for 10 minutes. Combine 3 medium tomatoes, cubed, 1 ½ cups finely chopped Italian parsley, 6 to 8 mint leaves, finely chopped, 2 scallions finely chopped, ½ tsp sea salt, ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper, 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, ¼ cup cold water. Set aside for 2 hours or until the bulgur has softened to your preference. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more salt, pepper, lemon juice, or olive oil as desired. Serve at room temperature. Keeps refrigerated for 2 to 3 days.

 

Spicy Cabbage Slaw: combine the zest and juice of one lime, 1 tsp cider vinegar, 1 tbsp sugar, ½ tsp salt, 1/3 cup canola oil, 2 hot chilies (stemmed and seeded), 1 plump garlic clove, chopped, ½ cup packed cilantro leaves in a food processor and process until well combined. Mix 4 cups thinly sliced cabbage, 1 cup shredded carrots, ½ cup thinly sliced red onion, and freshly ground black pepper. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours but preferably overnight before serving.

Cucumbers Wedges with Chile and Lime: Wash 2 8 to 10 inch cucumbers and slice off the ends. Halve each crosswise and then slice each half lengthwise to make wedges. Place cucumbers in a large bowl. Halve a lime and discard any seeds. Squeeze lime juice over the cucumber wedges and toss gently to coat, dust with salt and a spicy flavorful chile powder such as Chimayo. Serve immediately.

 

Chard and Penne Soup: This recipe was shared by CSA member Lois Long. Thanks Lois!

Ingredients:

2 cloves garlic (I used about half of the garlic scapes we received instead)

1 medium onion, chopped

1 bunch chard

3 Tbsp olive oil

6 cups vegetable broth

3 cups water

1 cup tubular pasta (I used cellentani)

15 oz can white navy beans (or other white  beans of your choice), drained

1/4 tsp fennel seed

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

To taste:  Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

 

Cut the stems of the chard into about 1″ pieces.

Chop the garlic scapes and the onion (about a medium chop)

Heal oil in frying pan. Add garlic, onion and chard stems. Cook until soft, about 15 minutes.

Put stock and water in soup pot,  bring to boil. Add pasta and cook for about 5 minutes.

 

In the meantime, roll chard leaves and cut into about 1″ strips.

 

Add contents of frying pan to soup pot along with chard leaves, beans and seasonings.

 

Bring to a boil and cook about 10 minutes, until pasta is tender.

 

Keep warm until ready to serve. Top with grated parmesan cheese.