Newsletter

Week #20 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:

Sunflower shoots, pea shoots, garlic, mixed onions, sweet peppers, aji rico pepper, jalapeno pepper, basil, and curly kale.

What’s going on at the farm:  

Week twenty of the CSA season is here!   I’m always a little amazed how quick summer goes by this time of year.   I think I took less than 5 days off all season so far so i’m also grateful for cooler weather and the promise of reduced work hours this time of year.  Never the less I have some of our staple crops for you in this last week of the CSA season.     CSA finishing up should allow me more time to work on clean up and other projects so in reality I don’t think its going to get less busy around here for a few more months.   I also have to prepare the fields for garlic planting and we are preparing some of our hemp crop for oil extraction.  We do now have dry organic hemp flower available too, and will throughout the winter and into next season so let me know if you want to order any, I can even mail it.  Organic CBD oil will be ready in another month or so as we are busy now getting the flowers ready to go to the oil processors. I may send out an e-mail about that to you folks as well as some people have expressed interest in purchasing it.   We are getting way to much precipitation again this week and it looks like a very wet forecast which could cause some trouble accomplishing these tasks.   As a farmer all you can do is your best to cope with those uncontrollable forces so thats the plan.  I’m sure it will all work out and i’ll just take it one day at a time as always.  Next year we should have a very nice strawberry crop in the spring that we worked hard on establishing this year and along with plans for a new barn that will hopefully be taking shape if we can get the old ones torn down soon.   We really need a building and a new cooler to pack all the veggies in after doing it outside for 13 years, with a small walk in those improvements would help our efficiency and work flow quite a bit spot thats the next big goals.   A fourth greenhouse for micro greens is also on the horizon over the next year or two.   Market Share members should know we will have our stand downtown on Saturdays for the remainder of the season.   We will be at Tuesday and Thursday markets one or two more weeks for sure also.

This weeks selection includes.

Sweet peppers  have been a popular crop for us for many years and the usual main theme for us in September.  This current crop is looking great and you will receive a variety of everything we have left this week which may include yellow, red, and orange sweet peppers.  I really like making stuffed peppers or grilling them whole until they char just a tad.  Afterwards they could be eaten as is, frozen with skin peeled off or made into roasted pepper soup.  They are good in salads with the micro greens too.

Sunflower and pea shoots are coming again and these have been my favorite micro green of the year and my go to base for salads at home.  Add a little tomato, sweet pepper, and onion and you have a fantastic salad.

Garlic is of course a staple so more of that coming for you and hopefully you all have a little stash by this point of the year.  It will hold unrefrigerated until spring if need be.

Mixed storage onions are also in that same boat of long storage ability so just hold them at room temp and hopefully you all have a little supply to hold you for a while.

Curly kale is our bunching green this week   My daughters favorite thing to do with this kale is kale chips.  Simply rub them with oil and bake at 250 for 20-30 minutes or so.   You can season them any way you like.

Ají rico is a mild red chili with fruity flavor and tolerable heat level, you can use these raw they are mild enough for it, or sautéed they have even less heat but good flavor.

Jalapeno  these are so good roasted or you can make them into a spicy sauce or marinade by cooking them with some garlic and blending them with oil or other things.

Basil is our herb for the last week and goes well with the peppers, onions or garlic for some great stir fry or on homemade pizza or pasta dishes.

 Thanks to everyone who was with us for our thirteenth season of farming here!  Your support and participation are greatly appreciated and I hope you enjoyed all the veggies and fruits!  There were a lot of great crops and flavors to enjoy throughout the season, both on our plates, and in the fields.   I know I gave it my all this season.  What keeps me going personally is the ultimate goal of providing lots of healthy fresh organic crops to enjoy so all our families can eat locally and to farm the earth sustainably without chemicals, and GMOs.  I would like to think that it makes a small difference which works towards a greater goal then just us.  I am very proud of all of you, all the employees, my family, and myself for being part of this big picture together.   Hopefully we will see the majority of you back for another season next year.   Sign ups for next season from returning members can begin anytime but you will receive e-mail reminders on the progress of sign-ups and preparations around the new year.   Generally early sign-ups are encouraged to help the farm start up again bringing in the seeds, fertilizer, soil, equipment, supplies, etc… that we need to prepare for a successful planting schedule to be executed properly.  These events happen very early in January through March despite the lack of field activity. In fact by February we will then be planting like crazy in the greenhouse again growing thousands and thousands of transplants, stacking up hours of labor again, and spreading tons of plant based compost over the semi-frozen fields. It is all a cycle constantly moving in rhythm to our climate and cycles here in Wisconsin and this late fall early winter months prepare us for reflection, vacations, and continuing education, not to mention healing physically in preparation for a new cycle.  Many other less exciting organizational projects await this winter as well like itemizing seeds and receipts.   Getting to everything that the season did not allow time for is important in the off season as well like vacation before things get crazy busy again including greenhouse and other farm repairs, home repairs, and plenty of paperwork and numbers to crunch.  I will work on clearing out trees and undergrowth which is always creeping in on a few of our fields as well.   The dense undergrowth of some areas always encourages more deer activity and in some areas decreases light too much.   On our 2 acre farm every square yard is valuable space!  Of course I am also looking forward to getting some rest for the body, family time with the kids who have been very patient with working nonstop,55 and the holidays too.   It was a challenging and beautiful journey as always and I enjoyed growing for you all!  Have a great fall and winter, come see me for your veggie needs at market, and from my family to yours, thank you!

Week #19 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:

Garlic, storage onions, sweet peppers, poblano pepper, jalapeño pepper, habanero pepper,  pea shoots, sunflower shoots, curly kale.

What’s going on at the farm:  

This week marks the final week of deliveries for bi-weekly members who will receive their tenth share of the season this week.   Full season members still have one week remaining next week for delivery number 20 of 20.   It has been a long and bountiful season and I am proud to say I think we did the best job we possibly could.   I hope to see you all back next year to all you bi-weekly members!  Regular full season members you have one more beautiful share coming!

Garlic. We are loading everybody up with garlic this week because it is the last delivery for some members and it goes good with everything.  Who can really have enough garlic?  Garlic is good for your cholesterol and also helpful as an an medicinal to keep you healthy in the winter.  It even combats dementia and helps to lower blood pressure.  What an amazing bulb!  These dry bulbs will store until spring if it takes that long to use them at room temperature.  Do not refrigerate your garlic and then take it out for long as it will sprout.  Keep it dry and room temp and out of direct sunlight.  Here is a link to the many health benefits of garlic.   https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/11-proven-health-benefits-of-garlic#section1

Storage Onions Our red storage onions are back but we are down to our last case of yellow so we will have reds for the rest of the season.   These will store up to 6 months the same as the garlic out of direct sunlight and at room temperature.

Pea Shoots and sunflower shoots  These have been a great crop for us this year and the cooler weather is keeping them sweet and shorter this week.  People really have been enjoying them everywhere we take them to market and hopefully you all have too.   They have quickly become my favorite for salads.

Sweet Peppers  Are one of my favorite crops to grow and they have been abundant lately mostly because of that super hot week we had last week.  We have a lot of these left coming in because they started late this year so expect a lot of these in your shares!  You can always roast some and peel the skin off and freeze them for winter use too.

Pablano is one of our hot peppers this week and they are mild and so good stuffed with rice, cheese, and beef.  I like to make the mix and then roast them at 450 for 30 minutes flipping them halfway through.  I do not go through the trouble of pre-roasting and removing the skins under cold water as is traditionally done because I don’t feel its necessary.   I just eat the skins and save the time myself.

habanero One of our hot peppers this week is habanero and these are pretty hot so be careful with them when you cut them up. The oils can get on things so rinse them away off your knife, cutting board, etc….  The flavor is very fruity and compliments the heat well.  They make a great hot sauce diluted with some vinegar, or combined with peaches or tomatoes.

Jalapeno Pepper  I like making poppers on the grill with these.  You can put cream cheese in them after splitting them in half and pulling out the seeds (always wear gloves for this)  sometimes i cook them wrapped in bacon.

Curly Kale  This vitamin packed green is good for salads if you massage it with a little oil.

Basil  We will also be chopping down the basil for one last time this season.  I recommend using it right away for little pesto which you could use fresh or freeze.

 

This is our last week for Bi-Weekly members so thank you to everyone who joined us for a 1/2 season (Bi-weekly share) this year! Hopefully you found your experience to be a tasty one and found value in your share of organic produce with us and enjoyed the fruits of our labor.  I hope we will see you returning when sign ups open this winter for another season of fresh veggies in a new decade  and the year 2020!  Crazy how time flies.  While we are talking about wrapping up the season I will remind you one more time that full season basic and standard members still have one week remaining!  For Tuesday folks the last delivery is Oct. 1st and for Thursday folks it is Oct. 3rd.

We will be shelling garlic for planting over the next week here and prepping our fields for planting it.  It was a very good garlic year and we have a lot of some very large seed garlic which should make for another good year for it next season.  Garlic also adapts to its soil slowly over the years and our stock has definitely progressed into noticeable larger bulbs every year.  To prep for planting we break all the bulbs up into individual cloves which will be hand planted one by one with the water wheel planter in a few weeks.

We still have two more solid months of work in general here before I can cozy in a bit and let the achy bones rest for a month or two while planning for and dreaming of another season to come.

I am looking forward to some vacation time myself or at least a few days off every week since I had less then 5 off all year and some more time with my children at their soccer games and other activities.   I will be attending some winter markets as well if you would like to support us and find our produce through the winter months.   Some possible Dane County Farmers Market holiday indoors are on the agenda for winter from mid November until Christmas and there will be some excellent garlic to be had among other things.  We are planning to be downtown regularly on the square through November 16th and at our Janesville, E. Side Market and Fitchburg locations on and off through October 31st.  Thanks again to all our bi-weekly members this year for your participation and support!  We will be in touch with reminders regarding sign-up opening for next season around the turn of the new year.  Otherwise I have all ready gotten a couple sign ups for next season so feel free to use the sign up form to sign up anytime for next year too.   I’ve all ready cleared the old sign ups and I expect pricing to remain the same as I raised it this last season.   As always I offer a 20 dollar discount to any returning members who sign up before February 15th on any share.   Thank you all for being a part of the CSA and until next week then for the rest of our members.  Enjoy the produce folks!

Week #18 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:

Pea shoots, sunflower shoots, sweet pepper, yellow storage onion, red storage onion, garlic, jalapeño pepper, tomato, red curly kale.

What’s going on at the farm:  

Critical timing for us this week with the weather acting up.   Its hard  to get done what we need to when its pouring every day so hopefully that will all stop.   The peppers are really pouring in as well though and we have a ton of sweet peppers for you this week and out steady offerings of onions, garlic, and micro greens and more.    Our run down this week is….

Sweet peppers are pouring in with this heat and rain so we will be including a mix of all the types we can!   Enjoy these while they last because when the heat is gone they will ripen much slower.   Stuffed peppers are a great way to use up a lot of these and if you find you have excess you can chop them and freeze them to put in chili or soup in the winter.

Red curly kale, this merlot colored kale has great color and flavor although it grows rather slow we are really liking this new variety for us this year because of the color and very consistent frilly leaf structure.

Garlic i’m sure your all familiar with, remember it does not need refrigeration just room temp is great.   One of my favorite things to do with it is roast whole bulbs in the oven on low for 40 minutes or so and then spread the cloves like/with butter on bread.

Storage onions are a regular thing in our shares and so here they are again.   The base of cooking in my book, the yellow onions are getting down there so some smaller ones this week.   One nice thing about having some smaller onions around is you can use them when you just need a little onion without having to save a huge cut onion in the fridge.

Pea shoots and sunflower shoots are back again and we are doubling down on them for you to give you more of these lovely little sprouts.  They will surely make great salads with some of your peppers, and other veggies!

Jalapeno is back again this week, i made a large batch of bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers for the farm potluck so if you missed it that’s a shame and you will have to come next year!    I will do it again!

Tomatoes.   Yes we still have some!   This week will mark our eleventh week of tomatoes in shares this year.  Thats the most we’ve ever been able to distribute in one season and we may not be done yet although they are slowing quite a bit and def getting smaller.

Thanks for being a part of the farm folks!  It’s worth mentioning there are two weeks remaining after this coming one in our twenty week 2019 CSA season.   Week #19 is next week which is our last week for bi-weekly shares, and of course our final delivery for full season members the week after for week #20.  The annual farm potluck didn’t really happen yet this year so I’m thinking we will reschedule for a later date after all the business of the season has wound down a little more.    Nothing says farm to table like a potluck on the farm and a large bonfire after the dinner to celebrate the season!  Enjoy the food!

Week #17 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:

poblano pepper, garlic, yellow storage onion, red storage onion, sweet peppers, sunflower shoots, mustard greens, curly kale, habanero pepper, and cilantro.

What’s going on at the farm: 

The veggies are winding down and the hemp harvest is going bonkers here this week and on top of it I came down with a nasty bug last friday and am still fighting it off.   This is going out late because I could barely get off the couch the last few days but press on I must.   Luckily many friends and family came to help get the hemp harvest going this week but its going to take a lot longer then i could have ever imagined based on the sheer size of the plants.  I was also expecting it to come slightly later and not overlap CSA more then a week or two but of course when it rains it pours.   It still works out pretty nicely that all this work is coming as the veggie season is winding down here on week 17 of 20.

This week we do have some new greens and herbs for you including mustard greens and an herb I’ve been getting asked for at market all year, fresh cilantro!  It’s been so cool lately that tomatoes and things are really slowing down.  We may not have enough tomato to go around this week so I’m sad to say we are going to leave those out of the shares this week for the first time since early July.   The highlight will be peppers and plenty of them as they finally gave a good set these last few weeks.  They are our favorite at home here but also members, and market goers really love these sweet Italian beauties.  We have them in yellow and red and a few nice orange and yellow bells coming in too so there will be a mix for everyone. Our offerings this week include.

Sunflower shoots.   Crunchy, nutty, and a little bitter sometimes these micros are packed with amino acids and protein.

Habanero pepper, these fiery orange beauties pack quite a punch so be careful when using them.   I like to wear gloves and make sure to be aware of the oils that get on the knife and the cutting board too.  They would make some great homemade sauce for the fridge to drop on dishes or you could slice them up and dry them to use sparingly in dishes.

Red and yellow storage onions.  The base of many recipes everywhere I think you all know by now that onions are a common theme in our boxes too.    All the onions you will receive now are the long term storage types and will hold up to 6 months without refrigeration.

Garlic.   Keep without refrigerating and if you have a garden maybe plant a few large cloves for yourself around halloween this year.

Pablano peppers.  These chili peppers are fairly mild and good for Mexican type dishes.  My favorite thing to do with them is stuff them with beef and rice and some cheese or onion and garlic to make spicy stuffed peppers.  I take the top stem off and remove the seeds to make it mild enough that the kids even enjoy them and after stuffing them with the pre cooked filing I broil them on a low broil for 20-30 minutes.

Cilantro  This pairs well with the poblanos this week and also if you have tomatoes around still for fresh pico or tacos.  cilantro is also pretty good in curry or stir fry dishes.

Mustard Greens.  These greens are spicy but also sweet and have a tenderness that lends them well enough to be salad greens if they are cut with a little vinegar.  They can also be used sautéed or even pickled.

Sweet peppers.    Enjoy these sweet fruits while they are here as they only ripen when the temps stay up!   We will be giving out as many of these as possible to you all this week and making them the centerpiece of the weekly share.

Curly Kale .  We are keeping that curly kale flowing out of the field for ya, great for kale chips, or minced up and sautéed into any dish.  It can even be used for raw salads when it is massaged with a little oil.

Thanks everyone, as always it is a pleasure and a privilege to be your farmer and I hope you all enjoy the veggies!

Week #16 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:

Sweet peppers, garlic, radishes, red onion, sweet yellow onion, eggplant, pea shoots, jalapeño pepper, red curly kale, tomatoes.

What’s going on at the farm:  

This is going out a day late because I also have two children as you well may know and been getting them ready for school and the start of soccer season.   Work will continue this week on clean up for fall along with the regular harvesting, cleaning, and mowing which is still a lot this time of year.  We took down hundreds upon hundreds of ten foot tall tomato vines from two of the three greenhouses and got them cleaned out.    The weather seems to be changing rapidly towards fall this year and cooling down quickly which makes things ripen and grow a little slower.  This week is the beginning of our last quarter of the season and it feels a bit like we are heading into the finish line here on Labor Day through the marathon that the farming season always is.   There are still a few hard months of work left to go though and although shares and markets always taper off a bit this time of year when kids go back to school and summer comes to an end.  I think our incredibly strong spring when we couldn’t even close CSA boxes or take a breath at market balances that out and gives us plenty to be proud of.   The run down for Week 16 follows.

Sweet peppers are coming in slowly without  the heat and humidity.  Still plenty to go around and we are saving almost all of them for you our members this year since supply is short. Peppers are one thing we love growing here that has not done quite as well this year without the normal heat we have in August.   The red large pointed Italian ones (carmen peppers)  are our absolute favorite in the household but I hope you enjoy them all.

Eggplant.   August and September are the best months for eggplant. My favorite way to eat these is to fry a thick slice and season it with herbs and olive oil and serve it on toast with mayo and tomato and cheese. Eggplant burgers!  Probably not many of these left to go around as the weather has cooled.

Jalapeno peppers are one of our hot pepper this week and they are good for so much but my favorite is splitting them in half and slow roasting them with cream cheese in them but they spice up any dish nice.  Cayenne is the long skinny red hot pepper and those are great dried for red pepper later or in stir fries, pasta dishes, or make your own bit of hot sauce!

Sweet onions.  These yellow sweet onions are softer but sweeter then most onions.  they don’t keep as long as the storage onions so use these first.

Red storage onions are here.  These will store until spring at room temperature if you don’t use them right away.  I just keep them in a paper bag somewhere out of direct sunlight or just a bowl on the kitchen table.

Garlic is included in your share again and will be until the end of the year, we have plenty from our big harvest in July stored up and ready for you.  No need to refrigerate it it stores at room temp all winter long.  Garlic is a great natural antibiotic and good for fighting cholesterol too.

Pea Shoots  are such great fresh salad greens and full of vitamins, but also great on burgers, sandwiches, tacos or even lightly sautéed.

Kale this week is the red curly kale although some folks may receive green.  We had it early in the year once or twice and this week it is our sautéed green, great for stir fry, sautéed salad with sesame seeds, or even a raw salad when its massaged roughly with oil.

Tomatoes are still coming in but much slower so fewer quantity of these delicious summer fruits are available with the cool weather and no more cherry tomatoes since we cleaned them out of the greenhouse.  Enjoy them while you can and I’m glad we got to load everyone up on them for so many weeks prior.

I hope everyone enjoys the veggies this week.

Thank you all.    -Farmer Kyle

Week #15 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box: 

Heirloom tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, yellow sweet onion, red onion, garlic, eggplant, assorted sweet peppers, sunflower shoots, leeks, aji rico or jalapeño hot peppers, curly kale.

What’s going on at the farm:

This weather has been perfect lately although very dry we are making many preparations for the hemp crop coming in sooner then I expected.  I built drying racks and bucking station and we are preparing space and tools and packaging and researching new methods we’ve never used before.  Those new things mixed with several people leaving for school this week and my own two children going back to school next week will leave the work stacking up and make for a very busy last quarter of the season here.  I think it should go pretty ok for fall with all the peppers we have coming in slowly and our stockpiles of onions, garlic, and plenty of healthy tomatoes vines and our micro greens operation rolling smoothly.

Our red onions are a storage red onion great for eating raw or cooked once they are cured and dry.   I do believe they are good with everything!  These store dry and will keep until spring at room temperature.

Sweet yellow onions are in the box again this week too, a great staple for any dish this is likely the last week for these sweet onions.  These store dry but won’t keep well after October.

Leeks are another mild onion coming to you this week, great in stir fries, or sautéed in butter with potatoes for some potato leek soup which can also be served cold!

Garlic is back again with flavor this week!  It’s great for you and will hold until spring with no refrigeration at room temp.

Aji Rico chilies are one of our hot peppers this week, these have a tear drop shape and red color and they are very fruity with a small amount of heat.  I would call these mild with great flavor and I really like them with tomatoes for fresh pico, or on tacos or nachos.  Some members may also receive jalapeños due to the fact that we don’t have a lot of peppers coming in with the cooler weather this summer.

Sweet peppers are coming in slow with the cooler temps but we will have an assortment of red, yellow, and maybe even some orange sweet peppers of different shapes and sizes in the mix.   In general these are larger then the hot peppers so it’s easy to tell them apart.v

Sunflower shoots and pea shoots are back again and they make great salads together and great compliment to your other meals too.

eggplant.  Just a few smaller fruits to go around now with these creamy and spongy summer fruits soak up anything you can spice or marinate them with.   I like them best fried in olive oil for sandwiches, pasta, or ratatouille.

Curly Kale.   Our favorite food with kale is garlic kale chips but the rich favor lends itself so well to being added minced and sautéed into any dish.

Tomatoes are still coming in pretty well too, a random blend will go in each box and although they are getting a bit smaller they do not lack in flavor!

Cherry tomatoes are still super healthy and delicious this year.   Last year this week they were done and we had none, ours are very healthy still but we are pulling them all out to make room for drying our hemp crop which will be coming in soon so this may be the last week for them for us this year.

Until next week then folks, have a great Labor Day weekend and enjoy the veg!

-Farmer Kyle

Week #14 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box: 

heirloom tomato, garlic, sweet yellow onion, red torpedo onion, sweet pepper, eggplant,  kale, summer squash or zucchini, sunflower shoots.

What’s going on at the farm:   

Usually we would have melons and the first squash coming soon this time of year.   Unfortunately I do have some bad news that our melons and winter squash did not fair well this year. Too much rain during key periods made for excess weed pressure followed by disease so we are forced to take a loss on these.   It really sucks especially since we had to plant them all twice and buy seed twice this spring because chipmunks ate hundreds of dollars worth of melon and squash seed earlier this spring on the first go around.   Fortunately we have plenty of tomatoes, and peppers, and onions and things to go around as these have done excellent this season.   Lots of rain this week but we have plenty to do.   The plan this week is cleaning up for fall.   We will be saying by to two summer employees this week who return to school so I will try to get as much cleaned up and put away before we get short on help around here for the last month of shares.   Planting some new open field area I tilled last friday into greens and radishes and turnips for fall is also in the plans.

Sweet peppers  Our sweet peppers include red and yellow italian types as well as red, orange, and yellow bells so you may receive a mix of these different types.   Just like our tomatoes we like to keep it interesting by randomly mixing it up for shares as much as possible.

Tomatoes, are still going strong in the greenhouses and a nice blend of slicers are coming to you this week.   Our cherry tomatoes were finished with all the rain this week last year but this year they are going strong thanks to the new greenhouse.   We will be forced to take the vines out by next week though to make room for fall crops.  Enjoy all the tomatoes while we have them as we will certainly be loading folks up on these prized fruits this week.

Kale is going strong and you will receive lacinato kale this week most likely but possibly also red or green curly kale.

Eggplant is also back and these fruits are also getting smaller and slowing down a bit this week, These are great cooked just about any way you can think of but my favorite is frying slices breaded and putting caramelized tomato and onion over them.

Garlic, sweet onions, and torpedo onions are all in the share again this week and will help make your cooking flavorful and savory in so many ways.   I’ve been making kabobs a lot lately and grilling the onions, peppers, squash, eggplant, tomatoes, marinated with a  little oil and sweet sauce.

Sunflower shoots are back again to add some green for salads or sandwiches to your box.

That’s it for this week folks.

Thank you for being great CSA members!  -Kyle

Week #13 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:  

Heirloom tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, garlic, sweet onions, shallots, jalapeño peppers,  zucchini or squash,  leeks, eggplant, sunflower shoots, pea shoots, and kale.

What’s going on at the farm:  

Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes, are pouring out of the greenhouses as fast as we can keep up with picking.  Enjoy the abundance of these summer fruits, we are planning on loading everyone up as much as possible over the course of August for sure and hopefully into September!

Lots of new sweet and hot peppers coming soon but they are not quite ready for shares this week.  Ive been getting some people asking when they will be ready but Unfortunately this cool year has made for late peppers although I don’t mind the stable temps for working.  I planted many greens and roots for fall last week.   I planted lettuce mix, four types of radishes including storage radishes, late green beans, mustard greens and mesclun salad mix.   Weather has been great for germination with periodic rain so hopefully these late crops will get a good start.

Keeping up with the harvest is a challenge this time of year when we are all sore and tired from the year building up.  I registered my children for school this week too so hard to think but summer is only a few weeks away from ending.  Fortunetly we have some things to look forward to like the annual farm potluck dinner!   I’m thinking  Sunday afternoon of September 8th sounds good.  I hope you all can make it and will mark your calendars.  I’ll be sending more info along in an e-mail reminder closer to the date but we usually start around 3 or 4 pm and go into the evening.   More updates on that coming soon but feel free to RSVP for that date so I can see how many people will be able to make it.   For now it’s back to the veggies that we are harvesting and delivering to you this week.

Heirloom tomatoes abound yet and they are so so good, these are a big part of my daily meals and I love eating just a plate of tomato and cucumber salad for lunch with just some salt, oil, and vinegar.   There have been plenty of BLT’s to go around though too, they are absolutely great with a nice ripe homegrown tomato.

Allium is the scientific name for the onion family and we have four types for you this week including our sweet yellow onions, bronze shallots, leeks, and garlic.    They are all dry except the leeks which need refrigeration the other onion family items will store at room temp just about anywhere out of direct sunlight.    All of these will add great savory flavors to your eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, and cooking greens like kale or chard.

Eggplant loves this warm humid weather, and I love grilling or pan frying slices of it in olive oil, and herbs, either breaded or not.     Try it on sourdough with some tomato, onion, garlic, or shallot and some melted mozzarella, its heavenly.

Zucchini and summer squash is here again and coming in slower.   They are almost done for the season but great sliced on homeade pizza, stir fries, zucchini fries, breads, muffins, cakes, and more.

Pea Shoots and Sunflower shoots.  We are doubling down on the micro greens this week to give you all a mix for salads and such.   I really like these on everything and they have replaced lettuce in our household indefinitely.

kale is back again and we have had it quite a bit but the quality and flavor of this stuff is so good!   My daughter and I are loving the kale chips at home and just a little garlic sliced onto them with some oil and salt and then bake them until they are crispy.   About 15-20 minutes (depending how crispy you like them) at 350 in a  glass pan in the oven stirring occasionally.

That’s all I’ve got for this week folks.  Thanks again and I hope you all enjoy the veggies!

-Farmer Kyle

Week #12 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:

Heirloom tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, eggplant, garlic, red torpedo onion, zucchini, summer squash, leeks, sunflower shoots, swiss chard, and Jalapeño pepper.

What’s going on at the farm:

Another busy and abundant week at the farm with some enjoyably cooler temperatures for working before the heat came back in.  We Could really use some rain, its been way to dry lately but no rain in site for this week.  Watering is going to be an issue going forward if this continues much longer.   Especially because im going to be planting a lot of salad greens and roots for fall over the next two weeks.   Our onions are all in and dried and clipped now so it’s good to say that huge task is finished going into August.    We are getting close to sweet peppers being ready to but they got in a little late this year so probably next week for those.  Meanwhile we are picking so many tomatoes right now so expect a lot of these beauties in your shares this week again 🙂

Sweet onions, specifically our red Mediterranean torpedo onions this week which are fully sun cured now so they can store at room temp with no refrigeration.   I keep my onions at room temp and out of direct light for longer storage although these are not a long term storage onion.

Swiss chard is our cooking green this week.  Its great anywhere you would use spinach sautéed with olive oil or butter and in eggs or pasta dishes.

Our garlic this week is a little different then the other variety you have been getting.   Our german extra hardy still has large cloves which are easy to peel but it is a little less complex in flavor then the purple stripe garlic.    Our garlic is dry now and can be stored out of direct light at room temperature.

Eggplant is back again this week and when all else fails these are great stewed up with some zucchini, summer, squash, tomatoes, pepper, onion and garlic for some ratatouille.  We have a wonderful ratatouille recipe right here on the website under the recipe section.    Its a great way to use a lot of summer veggies up in one dish too!

Tomatoes are back!   Slicers, cherries, and heirlooms!   Can anyone get enough homegrown tomatoes?   We will have an assortment again this week with a variety of flavors and colors. That should keep things interesting for you to make beautiful caprese salads, pico, or just a simple tomato sandwich.

Basil is probably the best pairing for an herb with all these savory summer veggies, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, onions, they all go so well with a little basil weather its Italian, korean, thai, or american food.   You could even spritz up your lemonade with some fresh basil during these hot summer months!

Jalapeno peppers are starting to come in so we will be giving one or two per box this week. they have some heat so be careful not to get the oils on your hands or face when preparing these.

Leeks.  These alliums are creamy and buttery especially when cooked in some butter.  They can be roasted or used in soup, sautéed, or pureed after sautéing a bit.

Zucchini and summer squash is still here and slowing down quite a bit now, not many more of these to go around this summer so enjoy them while they are here.

Sunflower shoots are back to provide you with some fresh micro greens for to use right away in your salads, on your sandwiches, or tacos, or even sautéed lightly!

Until next week be well, eat well, and enjoy the produce!

Week #11 – 2019 CSA Season

What’s in the Box:  

Eggplant, heirloom tomatoes, garlic, sweet yellow onion, leeks, red curly kale, zucchini,  summer squash, euro cucumber, cherry tomatoes, sunflower shoots, and basil.

What’s going on at the farm:  

We are seeing some significant shift in weather and decreasing day length this week on the farm as some cooler nights dipped down into the lower 50’s.  Its been great weather to work in so we are lucky that way recently.  Week 11 is our first delivery of the second half of the season but has also been 5 months straight of work for us and we are looking forward to taking a few days off here and there in the coming months.  Some summer crops will slow down a bit and are reaching the end of their days like squash and zucchini, while others like sweet peppers are just starting to come in.    All our onions are harvested with our last haul coming in from the field last Wednesday morning.  Now they will be cured and clipped and stockpile storage onions for your fall shares.  I found the first ripe melon this week and just need a little more sun and heat to get more fruit to set so we can hopefully have enough crop ready for you.  Sweet peppers are just starting and will be coming soon as well.   Never the less our crop list is looking very summery this week.

Cherry tomatoes are pouring in and our mix has 7 types which include chocolate, two types of red, two orange, yellow, yellow grape, and pink cherry tomatoes.  So many ways to enjoy these but just rinsed as a snack is a super easy way.  They are great roasted too or caramelized with your onions for a sweet and toasty tomato paste.

Slicing and heirloom tomatoes are also in and we have been distributing them to you in varied stages of ripeness so that you can have them throughout the week.  Remember you don’t need to refrigerate tomatoes, they ripen and taste better just left on the counter.

Eggplant is an August favorite on the farm here.  We had a casserole last week which used 4 eggplant under a layer of sliced tomato, and pepper, and onion with mozzarella cheese melted on top…. so tasty.    My favorite characteristic of eggplant is its ability to soak up the oils and herbs in a dish kind of like mushrooms.   A properly cooked eggplant is creamy and full of savory flavors.

Cucumbers are still rolling in but definitely slowing down so we will be decreasing the amount you get each week from here on, enjoy these crisp and hydrating summer fruits while they last.

Zucchini and summer squash, just a tad of each in our share this week.  So many uses for these the list truly doesn’t end.  We put them on pizza and in our pasta and stir fry dishes quite often at home here.

Onions this week are dried and cured meaning you don’t want to refrigerate these any more.  They are not like the fresh green top onions you received before because we layed these out in the sun to cure for a week before clipping of the tops for storage.    The curing process results in a better lasting and tasting onion, see if you notice the difference in sweetness especially in the large yellow Ailsa Craig sweet onions which we had a fantastic crop of this year!

Our garlic is also dry now and can be stored without refrigeration, more purple stripe coming to you this week which is a tad spicier then our porcelain garlic which will be coming later in the season.

Leek are our third member of the allium family coming this week, these long shanked summer leeks don’t store as long as a fall leek but the flavor is great on these.  My favorite way to eat them is sautéed in butter and blended with potatoes and cream for potato leek soup which can be served cold or hot.

A little basil coming for everyone this week.  Our basil is nearing the end of its cycle but we thought with all the tomatoes it would be nice to try and get you all some basil one more time this summer.

Lastly our green this week is curly kale.  The red curly kale is a new crop this year and very tender and flavorful!   We love kale chips at home with garlic sliced up and just a little oil, I bake them at 300 in a glass pan for 15-20 minutes  Stirring occasionally.  Some other recipes call for parchment paper.   In general you can season them anyway you like too.

A few more mentions this week which might make the box include pea shoots, and swiss chard.  Thank you all for your support and enjoy the summers bounty!