June 27 2012, Week 11

Announcements:

1) Next weeks Delivery on Wednesday July 4th is canceled and rescheduled for the day before, Tuesday July 3rd, same time, same place.

2) The annual potato harvest and tour at the farm this year will be scheduled for Sunday July 15th from 1:00pm to 2:30pm. Folks are encouraged to come with their children to sift through the soil and dig up potatoes. This is a pretty low maintenance job, suitable for those of all ages. It is like a big sand box with buried treasures for the kids. We will work for about an hour then embark on a short tour of the farm. The event is shortened this year to one hour of harvesting, as we did not plant quite as many potatoes this year as we have in the past. Folks are encouraged to come on time if they wish to take part in the harvest. I will be sending reminders in future newsletters as the date approaches.

Recipes, Produce and Storage Information:

Eggplant:  
Variety:  You have received Japanese eggplant, a long Asian variety that’s skin is edible and tends to be milder than the round varieties and doesn’t require salting.
Storing:  Eggplant will store in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to a week.  
How to use:  Eggplant can be broiled, grilled, fried, roasted and sautéed.  In Deborah Madison’s book, Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, she instructs:
“To Fry: Heat ½ inch light olive or vegetable oil in a heavy pan until nearly smoking.  Slide in a few eggplant slices without crowding the pan and cook until both sides are nicely colored.  1 minute or so, then drain on paper towels.  You can also fry in just enough oil to generously coat the bottom of the pan, but the concentrated heat of the larger amount of oil cooks the eggplant faster, and in the end it may well absorb less oil.”        
To Broil, “Slice the eggplant into rounds or lengthwise into slabs ½ to ¼ inch thick…….brush both sides generously with olive oil and season with salt and pepper……..broil the eggplant about 4 inches from the heat until browned, about 10 minutes.  Turn and broil the second side.”          
Once the eggplant rounds are cooked, Madison then suggests we serve with one of her peanut sauce recipes, such as follows:
Quick Peanut Sauce
Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone
Deborah Madison

3 tablespoons unsweetened peanut butter
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
1 plump garlic clove, minced or put through the press
2 teaspoons soy sauce or to taste
1 teaspoon light brown sugar
½ teaspoon Chile oil
Salt
 
Combine all the ingredients except the salt, adding 2 to 4 tablespoons warm water to make it the consistency you wish.  Add ¼ teaspoon salt and then to taste.  

What's growing on???
*A quick note about last week’s share.  We realized that some of the white onions we are in the process of curing( and distributed last week), have had some rotten tops.  So sorry if this was the with an onion you received last week.  It is crucial to harvest the onion at just the right time when its top is dying down.  Unfortunately, if it happens to be rainy and wet outside when that is happening, the top can start to rot quickly in the field before we have a chance to pull the onion.  We have to wait until the onion and ground are dry to pull them in order to not attempt to dry a wet onion.  If your onion was bad, let us know and we can get you a good one next week.  Thanks for your patience!  

The tomatoes are here!  A lot of them are starting to turn, but still a bit on the pale side.  We have more for you all this week, but next week more, with regular shares seeing at least two pounds in their box.  More Sungolds and mixed cherry tomatoes to come also.  

You can see the tomatoes responded well to the heat last week.  We adjusted as well, starting work earlier in the morning, to be out of the field by noon.  We spend a few hours in the shade of the packing shed after that, sorting, washing, and wiping produce for market and members.  This will be our routine for sure this Friday, as I hear temperatures may reach 100!  It is crucial for us to be out of the direct sun in the afternoon on days like that if we want to be of any use to anyone.  The simple shade of the packing shed makes a world of difference - although we do have hopes of installing a ceiling fan or two one day ;)  This time of year I think a lot about taking care of my body with plenty of sleep, water, electrolytes, vitamins and healthy foods.  If I don’t make sure to manage those things all summer, come August I am no use to anyone.  The exhaustion from the work and heat is cumulative, and has built up and caught me by surprise in the past.  Over the years it has been crucial for me to learn how to manage it.  At twelve years in, I find farming in the North Carolina summers really not all that bad. Hopefully I will be singing this same tune some Friday!

I love to hear from you so please email if you have any comments, thoughts or concerns. Elise.

 

What's in the box?

Full Share
Crop Amount  
 

Tomatoes! (3 lb.)

Mixed Cherry tomatoes (1 pint)

Cucumbers (1 lb.)

Eggplant (1 lb.)

Basil (1/4 lb.)

Green peppers (1 lb.)

Summer Squash (1.5 lb.)

Half Share
Crop Amount  
 

Tomatoes! (1 lb.)

Sungold cherry tomatoes! (one pint)

Cucumbers (1 lb.)

Eggplant (1 lb.)

Basil (1/8 lb.)

Small melon (either red flesh or yellow flesh watermelon or cantaloupe)

Summer Squash (3/4 lb.)