In this Issue:
Good info to know about each vegetable, including storage info…..
-Spring onions: You can eat the green part of the onion as well as the small bulb, just like a scallion. These are young tender and delicious! Store the green onions in their plastic bag in your refrigerator.
-Tatsoi: Regular share members can enjoy this Asian green sautéed with olive oil and garlic or see below for a recipe. The stems are great to eat as well as the leaves, as they add a nice crunchiness to the dish. Store the tatsoi in the plastic bag in your refrigerator to hold in moisture.
-Head lettuce: We have NOT WASHED your head lettuce on purpose. While we realize there will be some sand for you to wash off, we feel it will help prolong its life to not wash it prior to bagging it. There is some moisture on the heads from the rain that we had earlier this week that should help keep them perky. Yet the amount of water the head retains after dunking it can be excessive, and we would worry about the heads rotting in their bag in that situation. We bag all of our items, especially our greens, in plastic bags in order to hold in their moisture and prevent wilting. By the time the boxes made it to you, after packing, delivery and awaiting your arrival at their pick up locations, the greens would surely start to wilt on their own. So, a bag and not washing, we deduce, is the best way to prolong the shelf life of your lettuce head.
-Dill and Cilantro: The best way to store these guys is to keep them in their little bag and put them in the refrigerator.
-Beets: Separate the greens from the beet root, and put them in a separate plastic bag. This will prolong the life of both the root and the beet tops (especially since the bag isn’t even big enough to cover the greens meaning the refrigerator would dehydrate them and cause premature wilting). The tops are so gorgeous and yummy that they really are a whole other item of their own. You can sauté them or eat them any way you would Swiss Chard.
-Kohlrabi: This vegetable looks like a purple alien! Besides the fact that the purple is pretty, it really serves no purpose since you should peel the bulb prior to eating it raw or cooking it. You could use the greens like Kale, keep in mind they are a bit more bitter though. The real prize with this strange vegetable is the sweet bulb that some describe to taste like an apple or a turnip. Keep in the plastic bag and the refrigerator. See below for a recipe.
What’s going on at the farm?
Breaking news! We have had a lot of cloudy and cool days with rain to boot. This is the short answer to why only some full shares members received strawberries and the others boc choi. The long version is something like this: This weather has been terrible for the fragile nature of those wonderfully delicate and delicious berries. So we wait, and drool, as they remain mostly green still awaiting sun and warmth. Not to mention that this weather promotes rot, yes rot. Not a very welcoming or yummy word, but a part of farming from time to time. We have lost some berries to rot, and there isn’t too much we can do about that but get them and any dead leaves or organic matter away from the plant and far away from the field. And wait for sun. Which, we are going to get tomorrow and Friday, yippie! There are lots of green fruit and flowers ready for it.
Of course we will most likely get more rain this weekend….and what’s this I see about Accu-weather predicting 38 degrees for Cedar Grove Monday night? I am not going to think about all of that right now.
On the flip side, this weather has done some amazing things for some of our other crops like Broccoli and lettuce. This planting of broccoli threatened to bolt (bypass growing and go straight to a seed head) when we had our first round of 85 degree temps. If it were not for the cool and cloudy days, we would possibly have lost this round that we will be enjoying this week. Take my word for it, it is yummy and sweet! Lacey ate a whole head raw right out of the field simply because she couldn’t help herself. It’s that good. Two more plantings to go with the next round of broccoli predicted for boxes in two weeks. The lettuce kind of speaks for itself. Huge. Mild and sweet. This is the weather greens are made for.
Till next week, enjoy!
Please let us know if you have any thoughts, concerns or feedback, we love to hear from you!
Elise, Beth Hannah and Lacey.
Buckwheat Noodles with Shiitake Mushrooms, Bok Choy, Ginger and Scallions
From Fields of Greens by Annie Somerville
Serves Two to Four
¼ pound fresh shiitake mushrooms
½ large or 2 small heads of bok choy
6 ounces thin dried buckwheat or soba noodles
2 tbsp light vegetable oil or peanut oil
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1 to 2 jalepeno or Thai chilies, cut in half lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 scallion, thinly sliced on a diagonal
1 tbsp dark sesame oil
2 tbsp mirin (sweet cooking sake)
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp coarsely chopped cilantro
1 tsp sesame seed, toasted
Set a large pot of water on the stove to boil. Remove the mushroom stems and cut the caps into ½-inch slices. (The stems can be saved for stock.) For small heads of bok choy, slice the stem lengthwise, leaving leaf and stem together. For a large head, slice the stems diagonally, ¾ inch thick, and slice the leaves into 2-inch-wide ribbons.
When the water boils, add 1 tsp salt. Add the noodles and cook as directed on the package, about 8 to 10 minutes. While the pasta is cooking, heat the vegetable oil in a large sauté pan; add the shiitake mushrooms and ¼ tsp salt. Saute over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes, then add the garlic, ginger, chilies, and bok choy and sauté for 2 minutes.
Drain the pasta in a colander when it is just tender. Reduce the heat under the sauté pan and add the scallion, sesame oil, mirin and soy sauce. Quickly add the noodles, taking care not to overcook the bok choy. Remove from heat, toss the noodles with the vegetables and cilantro, and season with salt to taste. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
Swiss Chard a l’Italienne
From Henry’s CSA Recipes
2 pounds Swiss chard, rinsed, trimmed, and coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic, green germ removed
Sea salt and hot red pepper flakes (or freshly ground black pepper)
2 tbsp to one quarter extra virgin olive oil
Place the chard in a large stockpot with the rinse water still clinging to it and set on medium-high heat. When the card begins to sizzle stir it and cover. Reduce heat to medium and cook until chard is wilted but still has texture and the leaves have turned green while the stems have turned a translucent grey, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat.
Heat at least 2 tbsp of oil with the garlic in a skillet over medium heat and cook until the garlic begins to turn golden, about 5 minutes. Add the Swiss chard, squeezing out some of the liquid before adding it to the oil. Cook, stirring, until the Swiss chard has wilted entirely and the garlic is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and red pepper flakes (or black pepper). Remove from the heat and transfer to a warmed platter. Drizzle with remaining olive oil and serve.
Cool Ideas and Ways to Handle Kohlrabi
From From Asparagus to Zucchini: A Guide to Farm Fresh Seasonal Produce (3rd ed) by Madison Area Community Supported Agriculture Coalition
Chilled Wilted Tatsoi Salad with Sesame-Ginger Dressing
(Makes about 2 servings, recipe adapted from Big Oven, who got it from the New York Times.)
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and fill another bowl with cold water and a handful of ice cubes. Wash Tatsoi leaves (I used a salad spinner) and cut into thick strips. Dump Tatsoi into boiling water, time for exactly one minutes, then drain immediately into colander and dump into bowl with ice water. (I used used the salad spinner again for the ice water.)
While Tatsoi is cooling in ice water, get a plastic bowl with a tight fitting lid that’s large enough to hold all the Tatsoi. Mix dressing ingredients in this bowl, then drain Tatsoi well and add to dressing. Chill in the refrigerator an hour or more, turning bowl over a few times so Tatsoi remains coated with the dressing.
To serve, use tongs or a slotted spoon to remove Tatsoi from bowl and arrange on serving plates. Toast sesame seeds for 1-2 minutes in a dry pan and sprinkle over salad. (If using a mixture, the black seeds burn more quickly than the white ones.) Serve immediately.