April 25 2012, Week 2

Recipes, Produce and Storage Information:

Beet Greens: You can substitute these in a recipe for greens such as spinach or chard (they are closely related botanically and can be used more or less interchangeably). They cook quickly, are tender and sweet in the mouth, and are highly versatile. Separate the beet greens from the beet root and store them in a separate plastic bag in the hydrator drawer. These will keep for about a week (where as the roots will hold for three or more weeks!) Beet greens are delicious sautéed with some green garlic and oil. Whitney, who works here to grow your vegetables, is a fan of sautéing things in bacon fat. Yum…

Moroccan Beet Salad
Everyday Greens Annie Summerville

1 pound medium beets, scrubbed and trimmed
Moroccan Vinaigrette (recipe below)
Champagne vinegar

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the beets in a small baking dish with ¼ inch of water. Cover and roast until tender, about 35-40 minutes, depending on their size. When you test for doneness with a knife, there should be no resistance. If there is, they will be difficult to peel (the skins will slip off easily at this point). Cool and peel, then cut them into wedges. To make peeling easier, set up a small bowl of water and wet your fingertips periodically. Then use the moistened fingers to slip the skins off the beets. Place them in a bowl and toss with the vinaigrette. Season to taste with a splash of vinegar and a pinch of salt as needed.
Moroccan Vinaigrette
2 T fresh orange juice
1 T Champagne vinegar
¼ t cumin
¼ t coriander
¼ t salt
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
Cayenne pepper

Combine the orange juice, vinegar, spices and salt in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the oil until emulsified. Add a pinch of cayenne pepper to taste.

Green Garlic: The green garlic is quickly turning in to regular garlic, so we decided to stock you up! They will hold for weeks in a plastic bag in the hydrator drawer. So don’t worry, you have plenty of time to use the three stalks you received this weeks, half share members. Just remember, use them in place of regular garlic and you will be very happy.

Greens and Green Garlic
About.com: Local Foods by Molly Watson
1 to 2 T olive oil
3 green garlic stalks, chopped
1/8 tsp salt plus more to taste
2 slices prosciutto, sliced (optional)
1 bunch of kale, chard, beet greens or boc choi
Freshly ground pepper
Lemon juice

Heat a large frying pan over medium high heat. Add the oil. Swirl the oil to coat the bottom of the pan and add the green garlic and salt. Cook, stirring, until the green garlic is wilted, about 1 minute.
Add prosciutto, if using, and cook, stirring, until it loses its bright pink tone, about 1 minute.
Add greens, stir to combine, add 2 T water. Cover, reduce heat to medium low and cook until greens are well wilted, about 3 minutes. Stir, cover, and cook until tender (anywhere from 3-8 minutes). N n
Add salt, pepper, and lemon juice to taste.

Boc Choy: An Asian Green excellent raw as a salad green or sauteed as a cooked green. In the recipe below, try using some of your green garlic instead of mature garlic.

Boc Choy Stir-Fried with Garlic
Nancie McDermott Quick and Easy Chinese
1 ¼ pounds boc choy
2 T vegetable oil
3 slices fresh ginger
2 t chopped garlic
1 t salt
¼ t sugar
2 T water
Trim away and discard the bottom inch or so at the base of the bock choy, along with any tired outer leaves and stalks. Quarter the bok choy lengthwise, and then line up the spears. Cut crosswise into 2-inch lengths, and transfer the pieces to a large bowl. Tumble to loosen up all the leaves and pieces; you should have around 6 cups
Heat a wok or a large, deep skillet over high heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat the pan.
Add the ginger, garlic, and salt and toss well. Scatter in the bok choy and toss well, until it is shiny and beginning to wilt, less than one minute.
Add the sugar and water and continue cooking, tossing now and then until thte leaves are vivid green and the stalks are tender but not limp, 1 to 2 minutes. Add a little more water if needed to prevent burning while cooking.
Transfer to a serving plate and serve hot or warm.

What's What on the Farm

This really has been some spring. We have been experiencing some pretty crazy weather for sure. We actually had frost here Monday night. Yep. Luckily we spent a lot of time on Monday preparing for it, since, the tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, squash, basil and more were already planted out and susceptible to it. We succeeded. We patted ourselves on the backs and breathed a sigh of relief. I think that may be the last of it. Cross your fingers with me.

The strawberries....well…..what can I say. While many things we are growing this year are thriving and looking wonderful, the strawberries are not. We actually harvested less this week than last, that I think, is a first. Last week we had one pint for every member and about 25 extra pints for market. This week, we don’t even have enough for each member. I would much rather be battling Mother Nature with, say, the radishes or turnips. But, this year it is the strawberries. In fact, we have had some issues with them the past few years, but this year takes the cake. Why? What is going on? We are battling temperatures, plant disease and rain. The high temperatures of March initiated blooming two weeks earlier than normal. Once the fruits start forming they are used to getting more warm weather that actually acts to sweeten the berries. That’s right, the heat affects the flavor. We have had cool and rainy weather since they have started turning, hence their tartness. The rain does two things: excess water dilutes the sugar in the berry on the inside, and on the outside acts to trigger decomposition. Strawberries don’t have a skin. So, when they experience wetness for an extended period of time (like we had this weekend through Monday), they start to break down. And finally the disease issue. It was present, and the rain made it spread. I am not sure if it came in on the plants when we bought them in September ( a neighbor who bought plants from the same source is having the same problem), or if it just is present in my soil and persistent. I putting on my Sherlock Holmes hat and investigating. For now though, we had to throw out more rotten berries than pick ones that were good. It was a sad day in the strawberry patch yesterday.

I have to close with something cheerful after all that! How about how great those beets look? They,on the other hand, LOVE the cool and wet weather. And the carrots are coming and taste and look so delicious. The full share members have received a sneak peak of the carrots this year by receiving the white variety called White Satin. Although not as showy as the orange or purple varieties we grow, I am actually quite fond of this variety because of its lovely mild sweet flavor. They are my least favorite color but most favorite eating carrot. I hope you all enjoy.

We will be busy this week hilling the potatoes, preparing the beds for our eggplant and pepper transplants to go in to next week, and weeding. Always weeding. Thanks, enjoy!! Elise.

What to look forward too.....

Coming soon, broccoli and cauliflower are on the way. Broccoli always comes first, and I am hoping we will see it in next week’s box. Carrots. Carrots next week. More scallions, lettuce, beets, greens and hopefully more strawberries (lets all do the no rain dance!). Yum!

What's in the box?

Full Share
Crop Amount  

Head lettuce (one red leaf, one green leaf)

Beets (one bunch)*see recipe *remove the greens and put them in a seperate plastic bag to store so they won't wilt. And make sure to eat them!

Radishes (one bunch, french breakfast)

Kale (one large bunch)

Carrots (one bunch of white carrots)

Strawberries (one pint)

Scallions (one large bunch of red scallions)

Half Share
Crop Amount  

Head lettuce (one romaine)

Beets (one bunch) *see recipe *remove the greens and put them in a seperate plastic bag to store so they won't wilt. And make sure to eat them!

Green Garlic (three stalks) *see recipe

Boc Choi (one bunch) *see recipe