Spring CSA week 4

Clockwise from top left:
Spicy Salad Mix
Joi Choi
Curly Kale
2X Spinach
Rutabaga
Brussels Sprouts
Claytonia
Black Radish
Use first: spicy salad mix, claytonia
Store a bit longer (1-2 weeks): spinach, curly kale, joi choi, brussels sprouts
Good for a month or more: rutabaga, black radish

Happy Wednesday! Our greens really loved the spring-like weather of the past few weeks, they grew like crazy! Your spicy salad mix, spinach, claytonia, and kale are all harvested from the greenhouse, so they are very tender and would be excellent raw. The brussels sprouts were harvested from our garden Saturday morning before the extreme cold, they are so sweet! Just pluck them from the stalk prior to cooking.

You’ll notice we left the tops on your rutabaga and black radishes this week. They are excellent for sauteeing, steaming or braising. The rutabaga greens are reminiscent of broccoli. Black radishes are quite spicy! We were drooling daydreaming about stir frying them with the joi choi. We hope you enjoy your shares this week…plenty of greens to keep you feeling great and nourished!

Don’t forget to double check that you are taking the right size share when you pick up your box; the brightly colored sticker on the side will indicate whether a share is small or large!

Happy eating,
Vic, Mary, and Bethany

Spring CSA Week 3

Can you spot the surprise items in week 3’s share? (Hint: there are 2!)

 

Clockwise from top left:
Yellowstone Carrots
Tatsoi
French Breakfast Radishes
Baby Lettuce
Spinach
Curly Kale
Claytonia
Joi Choi

Our CSA member volunteers have lovingly termed this type of spread a Priapi Box O’ Greens. Indeed!

Use first: radishes, lettuce, claytonia, tatsoi, mushrooms (store best in a paper bag)
Store a bit longer (1-2 weeks): spinach, curly kale, joi choi, parsley
Good for a month or more: carrots

You will notice the tops of your radishes are beautiful, tender and fresh. One of our favorite preparations for a radish of this caliber is to: rinse your bunch of radishes without removing tops (we even leave their little roots on, but you can follow your heart on this one). Set a pan on your stovetop with a small amount of water covering the bottom. Cover and gently steam your radishes until greens wilt — be careful not to overcook! This will only take about 5-7 minutes on med-low heat. Remove from heat and drain water, garnish with a bit of butter and salt, and enjoy! This is a fabulous accompaniment to scrambled eggs for breakfast, lunch, or dinner! How are you getting creative in the kitchen this week? We would love to hear your favorite recipes from eating ‘out of the box’.

We would also like to remind you all to return your empty CSA boxes to your pickup location, or the farm. The waxed boxes are super durable and we reuse them many times. Not only is this earth friendly, it also helps keep the cost of the CSA down. Here’s a little video on how to properly collapse your box for transport.

Happy eating,
Vic, Mary, and Bethany

Why Join A CSA? For many good reasons….

You Should Consider Joining a CSA Farm this Season

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a personal relationship between a farmer and eater. You join the farm as a member and you get a box of food from the farm throughout the growing season.

As our culture and economy becomes more homogenized and centralized, CSA is the opposite. It is about a personal relationship between a farmer and the CSA members. It is an intimate connection between local farmland and your dinner table.

You get the freshest possible ingredients from a farmer that you know and the farm gets advance knowledge of demand so he or she can focus on growing healthy food and getting the food to you.

In world of intractable problems – take your pick: political and economic instability, nuclear weapons, global warming, and on and on – joining a CSA is a positive act that you can take today that has profound impacts on your health, your local economy, and the environment.

CSA farmers spend money with other local businesses which circulates money in our local economies. CSA farmers take care of their land. CSA farmers treat their employees well. You know all this because you can go visit your CSA farmer and see for yourself. CSA keeps small scale, local farms in business so they can continue producing food for you.

To be frank, joining a CSA is not the easiest path to eating healthy. You can continue to shop at the grocery store and maybe visit the farmers market a few times throughout the season. However, joining a CSA puts you in partnership with a local farmer. A CSA membership enriches your life with high quality food as you spend your food dollars in a way that you will feel good about.

The investment you make in your CSA farm is modest. The average CSA share costs $25/week during the season, so that is $100/month. That’s probably less than your cable bill and less than your cell phone bill — for food grown with care in local soil and delivered directly to your neighborhood! There usually is some up-front investment, though most farms will offer payment plans (if not, ask your farmer for a payment plan if you need it!).

Thank you for supporting local farms and making the commitment to a CSA share. Your support makes all the difference and keeps our farms running.  Visit our CSA page here.

If there is something that is preventing you from joining your CSA farm, you should let your farmer know so they can improve their program in the future!

-Simon Huntley
Founder, Small Farm Central
http://www.smallfarmcentral.com

Spring CSA Week 2

Spring CSA Week 2

Happy Wednesday, veggie community! Here’s what you’ll find in your box this week:

Hakurei turnips
Carrots
Kale
Spinach
Dandelion greens
Spicy salad mix
Joi Choi
Sweet potatoes

We are excited to see longer days and loads of sunshine. We are also busy planning and planting for spring! Are you planning any gardening projects yourself? Don’t forget, that as a CSA member you receive 15% off any purchases made at the garden center — or any of our farmers markets!

On to vegetables, lots of beautiful greens in your box this week. In your spicy salad mix you will find tatsoi, arugula, mizuna, baby mustard and baby red russian kale…some spicy greens, and some mild. This mix is pretty versatile, and while it makes a lovely salad you can also steam it lightly for a side to whatever you’re having. Speaking of salads, we wholeheartedly recommend that you try your spinach raw before cooking it. It is tender and sweet and lovely for salads, and the ultimate loophole for enjoying more of it (we have all heard complaints about how spinach ‘cooks down to nothing’). Dandelion greens can be bitter eaten raw, sweet spinach would balance them well (and we like a citrus forward olive oil vinaigrette, with a little honey on them, too!) If you find your dandelion too bitter, try sauteeing them or incorporating them into soups. Your liver will thank you for it — they are majorly detoxifying. Your carrots and sweet potatoes will bring some more sweetness to veggie dishes this week. We’ve posted a few links below for some recipe ideas…if you make something you love, we would love to hear about it!

Happy eating,
Vic, Mary, and Bethany

Dandelion Greens with a kick!
Joi Choi Soup
Glazed Hakurei Turnips

Winter Week 6

Happy week 6 of our Winter CSA!

Ever wonder what farmers think about in the winter time? We think about spring! Surely we are not alone. Have you thought about signing up for the Spring CSA? With just three weeks left in the winter season, now is the perfect time to secure your spot in the Spring CSA for a continuous supply of delicious local, organic veggies before shares sell out. You can sign up in person, through our website, or over the phone. (Pro tip: Those CSA perks cards will be nice to have if you plan on purchasing plants for your own garden this spring – 15% off!) Give us a call or stop by if you have any questions!

In your box this week you will find:

Lettuce

Dandelion Greens

Sweet potatoes

Watermelon Radishes

Rainbow Carrots

Joi Choi

Purple Top Turnips

Curly Kale

Tender greens to use first: Lettuce, dandelion greens

Hearty greens good for longer term storage: Curly kale, Joi Choi

Root veggies (store or enjoy now!): Rainbow carrots, watermelon radishes, purple top turnips, sweet potatoes (best stored at 45-65 degree temperature)

Thank you!

Vic, Mary & Bethany

Here is a seriously delicious way to use some of your turnips that may be accumulating in your crisper drawer. It was brought to our attention by the lovely and talented Patricia M. Pat is a Priapi Gardens MVP when it comes to sneaking vegetables into the most unlikely of courses – dessert! Sound crazy? Don’t worry, we have all taste tested this recipe at the farm (Pat is also very generous and showers us with treats) and it is 100% hungry farmer approved!

Gourmet Turnip Cake (Kihen Fin Veisseriben)

Prep Time: 45 mins     Total Time: 1 hr 35 mins      Servings: 8-10

ABOUT THIS RECIPE: “Posted for the Zaar World Tour 2006-Israel. From the “Best of International Cooking” cookbook, Bayhill.”

CAKE

1/2 cup butter, plus

1 tablespoon butter

3/4 cup granulated sugar [I used organic whole cane sugar]

3 eggs

1 cup pureed cooked turnip

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour [I used all-purpose whole wheat flour]

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup chopped walnuts [Did not use walnuts; would use ground nuts if using in the waffle batter. Pecans would taste better, esp if toasted first.]

 

FROSTING [Did not make the frosting.  If you use it, it is a raw-egg frosting, so cake must be refrigerated.]

3/4 cup butter, plus

2 tablespoons butter

2 egg yolks

4 cups powdered sugar

3/4 cup grated walnuts

 

DIRECTIONS

To make cake:

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Butter an 8-inch springform pan; sprinkle with flour.

In a medium bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs, turnip puree, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, salt and chopped nuts.

Pour cake batter into buttered pan. Bake 50 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on a rack 5 minutes before removing side of pan.

 

To assemble cake:

In a medium bowl, cream butter, egg yolks and powdered sugar. Cut horizontally through center of cooled cake, making 2 layers. Spread 1/3 of the frosting over lower half of cake; place other half of cake on top. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake; sprinkle evenly with grated nuts. Refrigerate until served; refrigerate unused portion.

 

Pat’s Notes:  I made this as waffles. I separated the eggs; whipped the whites until stiff. After creaming the butter & sugar, I incorporated all of the yolks and then half the pureed turnip.  Then I folded in half the whites, then the other half turnips, then folded in the remaining whites.  This kept the batter lighter after adding the dry ingredients.  If you want a pourable batter, consider adding milk of some type or cream in Tablespoon increments until desired consistency.