Monthly Archives: November 2015

Storage share, Nov. 19/20, 2015

DSCF8942-2 storage 2 boxes

IMG_3968 two boxes storage share

Things you need to know about your winter share

* Your delivery will consist of two different boxes, labeled “A” and “B”.  Take one “A” box and one “B” box.  The boxes contain different vegetables.
* Please pick up your boxes on the day of delivery, during the normal hours for your site.
* Outpost members, please get your boxes on Friday.  This is the busiest weekend of the year for the Outpost staff, so we cannot ask them to hold boxes past Friday.
* Members at outdoor sites, please carefully put the blankets back on the boxes.  That keeps everyone’s produce in good shape.
* The boxes are heavy!  It’s OK to take home the packed boxes, then return the empty boxes to your pickup site within two weeks.  We’ll swing back and pick them up.

Veggie List and Storage Info (Storage share, Nov. 19/20. 2015)

We hope you enjoy this shipment of veggies!  Strategize to use them well, as some will last longer than others.
* This vegetable is the most perishable: kale.
* These are the next-most perishable: Brussels sprouts, cabbage, leeks and onions.  Keep an eye on your butternut, potatoes and sweet potatoes.  The last two are susceptible to drying out.
* These will last the longest: Beauty Heart radish, beets, carrots, celeriac, garlic, parsnips and rutabaga.

Box “A”

Beauty Heart winter radish, 2
Beets, 3 lb
Brussels sprouts, 1 – 2 short stalks
Carrots, 6 lb mixed colors
(orange 4 lb, yellow 1 lb, purple 1 lb)
Green cabbage
Leeks, 3 lb
Parsnips, 3 lb
Rutabaga, 1 or 2

Box “B”

Butternut squash, 3-6, ~12 lb
Sweet potatoes, ~10 lb
Red Maria potatoes, ~5 lb
Carolla potatoes, ~5  lb
Red onions, 1 lb
Yellow onions, 4 lb
Garlic, 3

Beauty Heart radishes (round, white with pale green shoulders and bright pink interior) – Refrigerate.  The interior color is lovely.  Slice thinly and add to salads, cook lightly in mixed vegetable medleys or cut into matchsticks and add to pasta salads.  We enjoy grated carrot and Beauty Heart salads all winter.
Beets – Refrigerate in a bag or container.  Beets will store for two months or longer.
Brussels sprouts – Pluck from stalks and refrigerate in a bag or container.  Eat soon.
Cabbage – Refrigerate.  Cut off chunks as needed.
Carrots, orange.  Refrigerate in a plastic bag.  Will keep for several weeks.
Carrots, yellow and purple.  These varieties are pretty AND they taste good. The purple carrots will turn your tongue green. That will get the kids interested.
Celeriac – Will store for months in your fridge.  Cut off chunks as needed.
Garlic.  Can be stored at room temperature.
Leeks.  These need washing.  It was getting dark as we prepped them, and we did not realize how much soil was still on them.  Refrigerate and eat within three weeks.  Leeks are not a long-storage crop.  You may need to strip off one or two outer leaves to freshen the leeks before you cook them.
Onions: Store in a cool, dark spot or refrigerate.  Protect from light.  Exposure to light stimulates sprouting.  Refrigerate if you expect to hold for more than one month.
Parsnips (These look like large white carrots.) – Refrigerate in a plastic bag.  Parsnips will store for two months but will darken in color.  That is a harmless change.
Potatoes, Carola and Red Maria – Can be stored at room temperature or in a cool spot, but must be kept in the dark so they do not turn green.  The Carolas are think-skinned and prone to drying out, so keep an eye on them.  A loose plastic bag over the paper bag might help, but do not close the plastic bag.  Both types will store longer if kept cool.  Around 40 – 50 F is ideal.  These potatoes were grown by our friends/neighbors Peg and Matt Schaeffer.
Carolas are small to medium potatoes with yellow skin and flesh.  Matt says they are his favorite potato and referred me to this description online:  “These yellow-fleshed potatoes have moist, creamy-sweet flesh and satisfying texture; a favorite for oven roasting to a rich golden-brown, as well as grilling, steaming, mashing or frying. They add sensational flavor and texture to soups and stews.”
Red Marias are another favorite for the Schaeffers.  They are good all-purpose red potatoes with moist, sweet white flesh, good for boiling, mashing, roasting, and salads.  Stores well.
Rutabaga (round root, cream-colored with purple shoulders) – Cover and refrigerate.  Will store for several months.
Sweet potatoes – These are the Covington variety, and have developed excellent flavor and sweetness.  Store at room temperature, no lower than 55 F.  Keep them on your kitchen counter where it’s easy to keep an eye on them.  I like to keep ours in a paper bag so they don’t dehydrate.  Cook promptly if they start to soften.  The roots come in a wide ranges of sizes and all are good.
Butternut winter squash –  You will receive three to six butternuts, depending on size.  They are a mix of varieties: Metro, Waltham, JWS.  Store winter squash in a cool, dry place.  50 F is ideal.  Do not put in a plastic bag.  Inspect your squash frequently and cook promptly if you see any soft spots developing.  You can cook, mash and freeze the squash for future use.  I find that you can refrigerate cut raw squash for up to one week.  This runs counter to the accepted way to store squash, but is useful if you want to cook just half a squash at one time.  Try microwaving your squash for one to two minutes before cutting or peeling.  This softens the squash and makes large butternuts easier to handle.

What are you cooking for Thanksgiving?

We are creatures of habit when it comes to Thanksgiving.  Here are our plans so far: brined roast heritage turkey (Beth), Brussels sprouts with garlic-mustard vinaigrette (Steve), roasted sweet potatoes with garlicky yogurt dip (Sophie), glazed butternut squash (Beth), crunchy carrot-Beauty Heart salad with sesame-seed dressing (Steve), homemade applesauce (Ari), and apple pie (Sophie).  We love celebrating Thanksgiving and the end of harvest season!

Menu Ideas

There are many terrific Thanksgiving menus and recipes online right now.  Many include vegetables that you will receive in this delivery.  Here is a list of the recipe sites I rely on for new vegetable and salad recipes.  Search any of these sites if you are stumped about what to do with your storage share.
* The New York Times Cooking app keeps getting better and better.  They post appealing recipes and recipe collections every day, and just posted a Thanksgiving menu planner.  In my opinion, Melissa Clark is the best NYT food writer.  She’s practical and her dishes are always flavorful.  David Tanis, Mark Bittman and Martha Rose Shulman are other favorites.  The app and recipes appear to be free to the public, but I think you need to be a NYT subscriber to save recipes.
* I like the lively site, and always read the community comments.
* Smitten Kitchen is our go-to site for dessert recipes but has excellent veggie recipes too.  Plus the blogger is funny.  She’s posted a string of interesting recipes this month.  Once our work is over, I’m cooking my way through all of them.
* The Kitchn.  I found this site after wandering over from their Apartment therapy home-design site.  Good recipes.
* 101cookbooks.  Always has good vegetarian and whole-grain recipes.
* Finally, remember that we have access to the entire catalog of Local Thyme recipes all winter.  Check them out for Thanksgiving ideas.

Do you have favorite menu sites for fall and winter recipes?

If so, please share in a comment!

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Final box + Tipi Secrets Revealed

This is the final box of our regular CSA season.  Thank you so much for joining our adventure this year.  We hope you have enjoyed the food and the experience.  We think about our community of eaters each week as we harvest and prepare your produce.  We cannot thank you enough for the trust you have placed in us.

It was a good season.  Too wet in spring, too dry in summer.  In other words, quite normal.  November weather usually leaves us battered and ready to hole up inside for the winter.  Not this year.  The mild fall has been a blessing, and we end the season feeling like spring chickens.  There are still housekeeping details to wrap up the season, so we will be in touch again in the next few weeks.
– 2015 survey, coming soon.
– 2016 CSA registration, coming soon.

Please return all boxes to your pick-up site.

We will retrieve them next week.  It is best to unpack this week’s produce and leave the empty box behind.

Storage share members …

We sent you an email on November 4 with delivery dates.  Contact us if you didn’t receive that email.

Tipi Secrets Revealed

I tend to curate the images we share, focussing on our farm’s beauty and productivity.  To end the season, let’s share a few things we’ve never shown you before.  The common thread?  Each of these images represents a moment of joy for our crew.

IMG_0478 melon smash2
Last summer, there were reports of problems with the orange watermelons.  Not many, but enough to keep us from shipping the final melons from that harvest.  Not sure what to do with them, we left them in the cooler until it was clear they destined for the compost heap.  (Haven’t you done that with leftovers in your fridge??)  Billy, Maggie, Boi and Jon cleaned out the remnants and the job turned into a melon-smashing spree.  I have never heard them laugh so hard.  Photo by Bri Fiene.

IMG_2381 spring lettuce
IMG_2538 complete lettuce harvest
Young lettuce fields are photogenic and filled with promise, so we usually share photos like the top one above.  Reality is that many of those lettuce heads will not be good enough to harvest.  Rot, insects, bolting, tip burn, rain damage – there are many, many ways for lettuce to go bad.  In the lower photo, we have harvested almost every single head.  That is rare and unusual, and made our lettuce crew very happy.  Maggie “Lettuce Queen” Schley still talks about this particular field.

IMG_0569 complete napa harvest
I could fill the newsletter with scenes like this napa and kohlrabi harvest but it would be bewildering for readers.  That was a terrific field but looks like a scene of wanton destruction.

IMG_20150825_160429866 snake2
Oops. We felt bad after mowing the sweet corn. Madeleine noticed something shiny at the edge of the field and found these remnants of a garter snake. Gage tanned the skin for Madeleine, then ate the snake.  He says it tasted like chicken, with the consistency of a rubber band.  He is a unique and resourceful guy.  OK, that was an interesting episode rather than a moment of joy.

IMG_3562 caitlyn hay bale
Our neighbors baled their corn stalks a few weeks ago.  There was endless discussion among our crew about whether it’s possible to leap up onto the bales unassisted.  Here are three answers:

That’s it!  Enjoy your winter and we will see you next spring.  Beth and Steve

Veggie List and Veggie Notes (Nov. 12/13, week #26, green EOW)

Red cabbage
Sweet potatoes, 2 – 2.5 lb
Brussels sprouts, on the stalk
Butternut squash
Leeks, 1.5 – 2 lb
Carrots, 2 lb
Beauty Heart radish

Next week’s box will probably contain … Wait!  The next CSA box will be on May 19, 2016. Put it on your calendars. Our best guess for that box is asparagus, spinach, lettuce, green garlic, potatoes, arugula, radishes, and rhubarb.

Beauty Heart radishes (round, white with pale green shoulders and bright pink interior) – Refrigerate. The interior color is lovely. Slice thinly and add to salads, cook lightly in mixed vegetable medleys or cut into matchsticks and add to pasta salads. We enjoy grated carrot and Beauty Heart salads all winter.


Comforting Classics

Confetti of Watermelon Radish and Carrot
Leek Bruschetta
Black Bean Burrito with Chipotle Sweet Potatoes and Red Cabbage
Sweet and Sour Braised Red Cabbage
Steamed Brussels Sprouts with Butter and Thyme
Winter Squash Soup with Gruyere Croutons

Outside the Box Recipes

Hazelnut Butter and Beauty Heart Radish Sandwich
Beer, Ham and Cheese Chowder with Leeks
Sweet Potato Polenta
Seared Red Cabbage with Crumbled Blue Cheese Dressing
Brussels Sprouts Braised in Nutmeg Cream
Butternut Squash Soup with Ham and Peas

Kitchen Sink Recipe

Hearty Garden Salad with Shaved Beauty Heart Radishes, Beets, Carrots, Eggs, Tuna or Chickpeas, and Sweet Garlic Dressing

Quick and Easy Meal Idea

Fusilli Mac and Cheese with Brussels Sprouts

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Final week for purple EOW

The calendar says “fall” but the weather says “summer.”  I am sure you have noticed.  Nonetheless, we are near the end of our CSA season.
This week, November 5/6 = Final box for our purple EOW members.  Thank you!
Next week, November 12/13 = Final box for weekly members and for green EOW members.
Storage share members – I sent you an email yesterday to confirm that you are registered, and with info about the delivery schedule.

IMG_3592 brussels kelcie billy
Kelcie and Billy harvest Brussels sprouts in shirt sleeves.  That’s not shabby.

Compare with our 2013 Brussels sprouts harvest.  What a difference.  We cut the stalks and took them back to the warm barn to pluck the sprouts from the stalks.  It’s impossible to do outside when it’s that cold.

Veggie List and Veggie Notes (Nov. 5/5, 2015, week #25, purple EOW)

Brussels sprouts
German butterball potatoes, 3.5 lb
Butternut squash
Beets, 2 lb
Yellow onions, about 2
OR small cauliflower + Romanesco
OR small cauliflower + broccoli

Next week’s box will probably contain sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, leeks, winter squash, red cabbage, carrots, Beauty Heart radish and garlic.

Brussels sprouts – We are sending the sprouts on the stalk.  Pluck from the stalk soon to keep the sprouts from wilting.  Saves space in your fridge too!
If you are a new CSA member, please approach Brussels sprouts with an open mind.  Many of us grew up eating awful, overcooked Brussels sprouts.  These Brussels sprouts are completely different.
Here is our method to cook Brussels sprouts: Wash the sprouts and trim the cut ends. Cut an X in the stem end of large sprouts.  Cut a single slit in small or medium sprouts.  This does two things. It helps the Brussels sprouts cook evenly, plus it allows them to soak up any marinade or dressing.  Place sprouts in a pot with one inch of water in the bottom and steam until tender, 7 to 10 minutes.  If the sprouts are uneven in size, then set aside the smallest ones and add to the pot after the larger ones have cooked for a few minutes.  Don’t overcook them!  You can also oven-roast Brussels sprouts.  Here are a few dressing ideas for cooked sprouts:
– Sherry vinegar/olive oil/Dijon mustard/garlic/white wine/salt and pepper.  This is our favorite, especially when you combine the Brussels sprouts with slivered peppers and thinly sliced onions.  Delicious warm, cold, or at room temperature.
– Balsamic vinegar/olive oil/garlic/salt and pepper
– Lemon juice and zest/melted brown butter/poppy seeds/white wine/garlic/salt
German butterball potatoes – These are from our friends Peg and Matt Schaefer of Sandhill Family Farms, and are the potatoes our crew helped harvest a few weeks ago.  Matt says German Butterballs good all-around potatoes with outstanding flavor.  This variety was the first place winner in Rodale’s Organic Gardening “Taste Off.”  Best uses are roasted, boiled or fried.  We boiled small ones in salt water and they were excellent.  Everone in our house chose a different accompaniment for the potatoes; sriracha mayo (Ari), garlic mayonnaise (me), kimchi (Steve) and parmesan cheese (Sophie).
Butternut squash (tan, cylindrical winter squash) – This “Metro” variety has cured very nicely, with good sweetness, flavor, and color.
Celeriac (knobby, round, bizarre-looking vegetable which smells like celery) – Flavorful celeriac is good raw or cooked.  It is excellent in mixed roasted veggies or in soup.  It’s especially good in cream soups, alone or mixed with potatoes.  Grated raw celeriac is a great starting point for winter salads.  Celeriac will store in your refrigerator for months.  Cut off chunks as you need them.  Peel before using.


Comforting Classics

Creamy Cauliflower Potato Soup
Butternut Pie or GF Butternut Pie
Brussels Sprouts with Pecan Brown Butter
BSK Breakfast Potatoes
Beet, Gorgonzola and Toasted Walnut Salad
Apple Celeriac Waldorf

Outside the Box Recipes

Cauliflower Polonaise
Winter Squash Galette
Whole Grain Spaghetti with Brussels Sprouts and Mushrooms (included are vegan substitutions)
Bangers and Mash
Ginger Glazed Beets
Celeriac, Smoked Mozzarella and Prosciutto Salad

Kitchen Sink Recipe

Brussels Sprout and Butternut Squash Dressing

Quick and Easy Meal Idea

Shanghai Style Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

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