News from the farm: June 4, 2008

What's going on at the farm?

Hello Folks! 6/4/2008 Week 6 of 20

A few reminders:
-Your parsley is in the same bag as your beets, just to save on plastic.
-You can wash out and dry your plastic bags then fold them and return them to your pick up site with your box and we will reuse them.
-If you are going to have to miss a week of your share, you can let me know ahead of time and I will 'hold' your box for that week. Then, when you want a double box to make up for it, send me an email to let me know when you would like it. You will receive TWO boxes with your name on them for that week, so make sure you look for both of them at your pick up site, or make sure I remember if you pick up from me at the market : )
-Please pick up your boxes during your pick up sites alloted hours. Thanks!

What's Growin' on?
Hello everyone! This week on the farm we have spent a lot of time harvesting. I remember back in March it felt like the three of us (Rachel, Beth and I) spent every day planting. Now I know why it felt that way! We are sure reaping the benefits. I feel as though we have had a really nice season so far, and the weather has helped play a big part in that. We have actually been having a spring this year with these nice cooler yet warm days.....and the rain, what a blessing. The spring crops love it, this is the weather they thrive in. The years past when we seem to skip right over spring and go from winter to summer are hard on them....I am sure you can see why.

We had a litter of pig babies on Sunday morning! I went out to feed Izzy (one of my breeding pigs) on Sunday morning and although I knew it was going to be soon, was pleasantly surprised to find her in the throws of labor. I always enjoy being able to see the babies actually being born, as opposed to finding them all there in the morning (although that is fun too). All are healthy and doing well. Although I am sure you are all tempted to want to come to see them, I am going to have to tell you that we can't encourage that. Pig mothers protecting their young can be very dangerous animals and even me being experienced around that situation can be nervous at times. I will try to get my camera working though so that I can send pictures.

We are going to be saying goodbye to strawberries soon, sad but true. I think we will have some next week, but maybe not, it really is one of those things that we will just have to wait and see. So savor them today : ) They have served us well this year. The strawberry flavor, more so than most crops, can be very easily affected by the weather conditions that it can always be a gamble from week to week or season to season how they will turn out. I feel that this year they have been darn good (although last week was not as good as the others due to the wet weather we had).

Produce:
-Next Week: Cucumbers! Most likely more Carrots, basil, summer squash, beets, cabbage and onions. A question mark on broccoli, cauliflower and strawberries. Two weeks: Green beans!
-Summer Squash: You have received both yellow summer squash and zucchini in your shares. The yellow summer squash is a variety called Zephyr, and is supposed to have the yellow top and light green bottom. The coloring is for fun, it is fun isn't it? It does not affect the flavor, as this is a yellow squash. The zucchini is a variety called Jaguar, and I think very tasty. We try to harvest them at a nice small size as most folks find that the smaller they are the more tender and sweet.
-Cauliflower: I always find cauliflower a challenge to grow mainly in trying to keep the head that beautiful blanched white that we are all familiar with. The problem is that if the sun has direct contact with the head, it will turn the head an off white, brown or purple color. The white actually is a blanched quality that comes from not being exposed to the sun. We do our best, but if you see some slight discoloring that is what it is from, not from anything actually wrong with the cauliflower itself or the taste of it.
-Cooking Tips: I really enjoy the flavor of parsley in a dish, which surprised me the first time I had it about ten years ago on the first farm that I worked on in upstate New York. I had only thought of it as an ornament on the plate prior to that, not actually edible. Well, it is and it is yummy. The dish I remember so fondly from years ago was a cold beet salad. After roasting the beets, they were cut up and in a mixed with pinto beans (either froma can but strained or dried then cooked), feta cheese, parsley, vinegar/oil/salt/pepper to taste. Let sit in the refrigerator to make it a cold salad for a few hours. Very tasty. I also have recipes on my website at www.elysianfarm.com if you would like some more cooking ideas.

Please let me know if you have any comments, suggestions, feedback, concerns via email. I love to hear from you. Elise.

What's in the box?

Full Box
Crop Amount Price
Total $26.00
Beets One larger bunch $3.50
Cauliflower Larger Head $3.50
Broccoli Two pounds $5.00
Summer Squash 2 lb.$4.00
Basil One quarter Lb. $2.00
Parsley One bunch $2.00
Swiss Chard Next Week 
Strawberries Two pints $6.00
Half Box
Crop Amount Price
Total $17.00
Beets Once bunch $2.50
Cauliflower Smaller Head $2.50
Broccoli One pound $2.50
Summer Squash 1 lb.$2.00
Basil Next Week 
Parsley One bunch $2.00
Swiss Chard One bunch $2.50
Strawberries Two pints $3.00