Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Veggie Week #20 newsletter

Half Share:
cucumbers - 1# - $2.00
arugula - 1/4# - $2.50
Mizuna - 1/4# - $2.50
Radishes - 1 bunch - $2.50
eggplant - 1# - $2.00
peppers 1.5# - $5.25
serrano peppers - 10 - $2.00

Full Share
Cucumbers - 1# - $2.00
arugula - 1/4# - $2.50
mizuna - 1/2# - $5.00
Radishes - 2 bunches - $5.00
Eggplant - 1# - $2.00
Squash - 1# - $2.00
Peppers - 2# - $7.00

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Fridays at the Farm

This is the trailer for the short movie Fridays at the Farm, about a CSA in Media, Pa, owned by the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia called Red Hill Farm. A great suggestion for anyone who wants to find out what a CSA is all about.

Fridays at the Farm Trailer from Coyopa Productions on Vimeo.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Veggie CSA Week #19

Full share:
Tomatoes - 2#
Sungold Cherry Tomatoes
Arugula - 1/2#
Peppers - 1#
Cucumbers - 2#
Eggplant - 1.5#

Half Share:
Tomatoes - 1.5#
Eggplant - 1#
Arugula - 1/4#
Peppers - 1.5#
Cucumbers - 1#

What to do with "all these peppers"

I just love pepper season because the yield is always so high and we're practically swimming in them! I am much more of a pepper freak than a tomato freak, so this time of year is my favorite (not to mention the cooler weather, longer shadows, and football!)

Don't feel you must consume all the peppers in your box within a week. First of all, they'll keep for quite a long time (weeks) in a plastic bag in the fridge. If you still have a back log, you can chop them up and freeze them, which is a really nice treat mid-winter (they're a little mushier when they thaw, but still quite tasty, and if you're cooking them, you'll never notice). I also roast them over an open flame (or under the broiler) until the skins start to blister. Then just throw them in a ziploc bag and toss the bag in the freezer. As you need them through the winter, just take a few out, thaw and peel the skins off. This will work with the Anaheims, Poblanos, and red bell peppers. I suppose you could also roast the green bells, but they're not as sweet and it just doesn't come out the same. Also worth mentioning, the bell peppers that aren't fully ripe (red) will eventually turn red. They start out on the plant as green (unripe) and slowly turn red. Sometimes, I pick them a little early, and they haven't completely turned. But they will soon enough.

Roasted red bell peppers are a wonderful treat on pizza, in pasta, on bread with olive oil, carmelized with onions and topped on meat, in sandwiches.....

The chiles are a bit harder to get used to cooking with. Hopefully, you've been roasting them, peeling their skins off, chopping them up and adding them to the salsas you've been having to make with all the tomatoes. I love the anaheims in soups and stews, the poblanos in eggs, potatoes, beans, and rice. We make a sort of poblano "enchilada" dish thats wonderful (sorta spicy, but nothing even I can't handle). For this, we make a tomato based sauce first (I just cook down and season lots of tomatoes). Then I peel and clean the poblanos and cut them so they're one sheet (like a mini torilla). I put a topping of italian sausage, chicken or pork (already cooked), or anything else you can think of, on the poblano and roll it up. Put in a baking dish, cover with sauce and cheese, bake for a while, and YUM.

If you're still at a loss for pepper recipes, let me know. I just google for recipes and theres endless options. One of the most wonderful things about summer's bounty of produce is that we're able to preserve it for use this winter, when its cold and dreary. Peppers, especially, liven up any winter day.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Veggie CSA Newsletter, Week #18

Full Share:

Tomatoes - 4# - $12.00
Cucumbers - 1# - $2.00
Peppers - 2# - $7.00
Squash - 1# - $2.00
Sungold Cherry Tomatoes - $3.00

TOTAL - $26.00

Half Share - CARRBORO:
Tomatoes - 3# - $9.00
Peppers - 1# - $3.50
Eggplant - 1# - $2.00
Cucumbers - 1# - $2.00
TOTAL - $16.50

Half Share - RTI:
Tomatoes - 3# - $9.00
Peppers - 1# - $3.50
Cucumbers - 1# - $2.00
Eggplant - 1/2# - $1.00
Basil - 1 bunch - $1.00
TOTAL - $16.50

Whats in your box:

Lots more tomatoes! The end is near, so enjoy them, probably just this week and next. Many more of the Pink Beautys (pink) and Big Beefs (red) so you will mostly see these in your boxes, with maybe a few other varieties. The sungolds are no longer producing enough for everyone to get them, so if you really want a pint, I'll bring extras with me today to the RTI drop-off.

This is the first of the eggplant, and hopefully they start giving us more in the next few weeks. They've been slow to blossom and set fruit, but I am beginning to see many little eggplant fruits starting now. Carrboro picker-uppers didn't receive basil this week (and instead got more eggplant) because it was a drizzly, rainy morning (no complaints!) on Wednesday.

In the peppers, you'll find red bell peppers (Sweet) and Anaheim chiles (mildly hot). Below, I will post a recipe a friend of mine hands out at market during pepper season, for a green chile stew, which includes Anaheims in the ingredients, and is so yummy! The (relatively) cool weather this week made me hungry for soups, stews, and fall crops. I have been eating this stew for breakfast the past few mornings.

Alex Hitt's Green Chile Stew

Traditional dish in New Mexico served at any meal ... even breakfast! It's also delicious made with pinto beans instead of meat.

10-20 New Mexican chiles (Anaheims)
(roasted, peeled, stems & seeds removed, chopped)
2 lb. lean pork or chicken breast cut into cubes
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped (optional)
4 cups beef or chicken broth depending on meat

Bringing it all together:
In a large pot or crockpot, brown the meat in the oil, add the onion and garlic and sauté until soft. Place all the rest of the ingredients in the pot and simmer until the meat is very tender (longer for pork, less time for chicken).

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Veggie CSA Newsletter, Week #17

Full Share:
Sungold Cherry Tomatoes - 1 pint - $3.00
Tomatoes - 3# - $9.00
Peppers 2# - $7.00
Cucumbers - 2# - $5.00
Onions - 1/2# - $1.25
Eggplant - 1# - $2.00
TOTAL: $27.75

Half Share:
Tomatoes - 2.5# - $7.50
Peppers - 1# - $3.50
Cucumbers - 1.5# - $3.00
Jalapenos or Serranos - $1.00
Onions - 1/2# - $1.25
TOTAL: $16.25

Whats in your box:

This is the last of the onions, sad but true. More cucumbers for everyone, and this planting of them has been just amazing!!

As for tomatoes, you're getting quite a few of them this week. I am really surprised at how well the tomatoes produced this past week, the best yet of this season. Just when I had given up hope! It seems as though we will have a fair amount of them for you this week and next, so if you need some sauce or canning recipes, let me know. The best performer, yield-wise, is the Pink Beauty tomato, so most of you will get a lot of them in your box. I love this sweet tomato as a sauce, or crushed and canned.

The peppers are a mixed bag of mild/hot chiles, with some bell (sweet) peppers too. So, in the plastic bag you will find the chiles, both Anaheim (long, light green) and Poblano (heart shaped, dark green). The Anaheims are mild, and the poblanos are a bit spicier. I roast both of these under the broiler until their skins blister. Once they cool, you can peel off the skins, remove the stem and seeds, and either stuff the peppers or chop 'em up and add them to salsas, eggs, mashed potatoes, your burger... We also add them to soups, sauces, and big pots of beans. Pepper season is my absolute favorite. We usually roast and then freeze these peppers to use throughout the winter.

Your sweet bells (no heat) will be seperate, and not in the plastic bag with the others.

For some weird reason, the japanese eggplant haven't started their heavy production yet...usually they're out of control by now. I see lots of fruits starting, but so far, they're sort of just trickling in. Maybe next week??

Whats happening on the farm

We had a good week off, but ready to get things in motion again. (And hoping for cooler temperatures soon!) The first of the fall garden is growing well, which includes arugula, radishes, turnips, lettuce mix, collards, and broccoli raab. We should start to see some of the greens and radishes in the boxes by the last week or two of the CSA season.