I apologize for no newsletter last week. Several times I parked myself in front of the computer to write and there was just blankness in my head. My fingers hovered and fluttered above the keyboard but all I could think about was, “I should go water the greenhouse. Did I call that pickle customer back? I really need to catch up on laundry. Is it bed time yet? I should probably respond to those emails …” and so on. I felt a lot like my son does when he has to write essays for English class. There was nothing new or unusual in the box last week, so I figured you all wouldn’t be too lost without a letter.
The focus of farm work has shifted in these past few weeks. Weeding, watering, and harvest are the daily tasks. There are only a few rounds of transplants left to put in. I’ll do one last seeding of carrots, beets, and beans tomorrow. We’ll keep up weekly successions of lettuce and herbs through August. It feels so strange to be planting fall/winter vegetables in this hot weather. Actually, we got a much needed break today from the sun and heat. I never thought I’d be grateful for a cool, cloudy summer day, but there ya go. My crew was especially happy about it.The work days are getting a little longer, as there is so much to harvest. Pickling cukes suck up a lot of our time, but we love growing them. It seems like pickles are the one thing that people continue to can, even when they’ve quit doing everything else. We have a lot of customers who tell us how they are teaching their kids and grand kids how to make them. What great memories being created!
Speaking of canning, we are starting to have surplus of some items, like beans, basil, and of course cucumbers. Check out our canning and storage vegetable page for pricing. Email me if you would like some. Availability comes and goes according to weather patterns and how many succession plantings are on at once. At some point we’ll have boxes of tomatoes as well.
For the next month or so we will be in the height of veggie abundance. So many yummy things will be ready all at once. It might start to feel overwhelming with all this food showing up every week. I highly recommend some serious menu planning. When you get your box, come up with a rough meal schedule for the week. This way you’ll have time to acquire missing ingredients and you won’t have to think about what to make at the end of the day. I find dinner prep much less burdensome when I don’t have to hem and haw about what to make. Another strategy to plow through all this food is to make a soup, casserole, or quiche to freeze. Then enjoy in winter.
What’s in the box:
beets, chard, or butterhead lettuce
red tomatoes-large shares
yellow & purple bean mix (half of you. The others get it next week.)
an assortment of summer squash
Italian eggplant-larges only
dill or basil
A Few Notes:
Onion: The variety is Sierra Blanco. Kind of sweet, kind of spicy. Can be used cooked or raw.
Yellow and Purple beans: We planted a small patch for fun and color, so we will rotate these around. They taste like green beans and can be used anywhere green beans are used. Sadly, their color fades a bit in cooking, but they sure are lovely to look at! The purple ones are particularly high in cancer fighting nutrients. Food as medicine!
Italian eggplant: Large shares got one today. If eggplant leaves you scratching your head, I have just the thing. Try this EASY recipe for baked eggplant rounds with mozzarella, parmesan, and fresh tomato. Fifteen minutes start to finish and soooo yummy!
Potatoes: King Harry is the variety. I think most of you got them last week. They are a little waxy and hold together well for potato salads and such. They also make a nice dense mashed potato. Our son and his friend made some last week for dinner and they were amazing!
Fennel: A CSA member sent us this recipe for Baked Fennel with Parmesan and Thyme. It sounds delish.
Enjoy your dinner!