Week #1. Let’s get started!

Simone leads a windswept rhubarb harvest, while she and Raul (back, right) train new employees.  Our training program is simple.  We pair new employees with experienced folks, and have them work side-by-side.  There are so many details when you grow 40 crops and 400 varieties.  We are fortunate to have enough returning employees to outnumber the new people 2:1.  That eases bringing new people on board during the spring rush.

First Delivery!

Welcome to our CSA!  Deliveries begin this week for:
– Weekly members,
– Every-other-week/ purple group
– Sampler/ moon group
Go here to check the delivery schedule for other shares.

Things you need to know.

♦  We post this newsletter/blog each Wednesday night, with a list of veggies for the week, quantities, information about storage and preparation, news of the farm, recipes, and a forecast for the next week’s box.  We alert you by email on Wednesday night once the newsletter is posted and ready to read.
♦  Want earlier notice of what will be in the box?  Check the sidebar on our website homepage around 7 p.m. on Wednesday night.  I’ll post the list under “Box Contents.”  I also provide a tentative list for the following week in the Veggie List section of this newsletter.  The next week’s list is rarely complete but the items listed are ones we feel confident about.
♦  EOW, sampler and weekly members, we assume you read all the newsletters, even on your “off” weeks.  This newsletter (and our emails to you) are our means to communicate with you.
♦  The first few boxes of the season are often the lightest.  EOW members, do not worry that you have signed up for the wrong share!   Our deliveries get heavier and more abundant as the season progresses.
♦  We will sometimes write “OR” in the produce list, e.g. green leaf OR red bibb lettuce.  You will receive one of these crops.  All the boxes at each site are identical; we pack the same crops for all the members at each site.  Please don’t open other members’ boxes.
♦  Wash your produce well this week to remove grit.  It has rained a lot lately, driving grit into the asparagus and anything that forms a head (lettuce, arugula, spinach).  Our crew took extra care with washing but expect to wash everything.  You should always wash your produce!
♦  On Thursday, we deliver CSA boxes to Evansville, Fitchburg, Madison, McFarland, Middleton, Oregon and Verona.
♦  On Friday, we deliver CSA boxes to Brookfield, Janesville, Mequon, Milwaukee, Waukesha and Wauwatosa.

Veggie List and Veggie Notes
May 23/24, 2019 (Th/Fri sites)

Asparagus, 0.6 lb
Spinach, 1 big bunch, ~1.5 lb
Green leaf lettuce, 1
Arugula, 1 bunch
Salad radishes, 1 big bunch
Green garlic, 1 bunch
‘Goldrush’ russet potatoes, ~3 1/2 lb
Rhubarb, ~2 lb

Next week’s box will probably contain asparagus, spinach, button mushrooms, lettuce,  green garlic, bok choy, salad radishes, and rhubarb.

Asparagus – The asparagus is growing slowly because of the chilly weather, especially the cold nights.
Enjoy this spring treat!  Your asparagus will be green or purple.  The purple variety turns dark green when cooked.  Its flavor is almost identical to normal green asparagus.  Wash your asparagus thoroughly to remove hidden grit.  Submerge in water with the tips pointing down, soak briefly, then swish vigorously and pull out of the water.  The draining action helps pull the grit out of the asparagus tips.  Repeat several times.
Storage: Asparagus is perishable, so eat it as soon as possible.  Store in a paper towel, cloth or paper bag, then wrap loosely in a plastic bag.  The paper bag protects the asparagus tips from direct contact with the plastic bag.  The plastic bag keeps the asparagus from wilting.
Preparation: We snap our asparagus at harvest, rather than cutting.  Therefore, there is no need to snap the stalks to remove fibrous ends.  For the same reason, it is not necessary to peel the asparagus stalks.  It’s OK to trim the cut end a bit.
Cooking:  If your asparagus stalks vary greatly in size, you will want to cook the thicker ones longer.  Put an empty steamer pot over water, and bring the water to a boil.  Add the asparagus.  Cover and steam over medium heat until just tender.  Use two forks or a spatula to turn the asparagus during cooking, rotating the bottom spears to the top.  Drain and serve.  Alternatively, you can lay spears flat in the bottom of a broad pan, with ½ inch of water.  Also excellent broiled or grilled.  Good dressed with vinaigrette, or with lime juice, salt and pepper.

Lettuce and spinach – Wash your greens to remove grit splashed into the heads by rain.  Cut to the size you like, submerge in water, swish gently, then pull from the water and drain in a colander.  Some weeks, you will need to repeat in fresh water.  I find it useful to use a kitchen tub for this job, so you don’t have to run an entire sink of water.
Storage hint – To extend the storage life of your tender greens, wash them, dry in a salad spinner, then store in a dry container or bag.  Lettuce, spinach and arugula last much longer when handled this way.

Arugula – (bunch of green leaves with pungent scent) – This is a spring treat!  Arugula is good mixed with lettuce or spinach in salads, or added to cooked dishes such as lasagne or quiche.  I love it on sandwiches.  This arugula is thin-leaved and tender and will not store for long.  Eat soon.  Cover and refrigerate.

Salad radishes – These are so good right now; tender, crisp and not too spicy.  They are great in salads or thinly sliced on sandwiches.  A few years ago, I was served open-faced radish and butter sandwiches on toast and was impressed with how tasty they were.  Use good quality butter.
Storage: cover and refrigerate.

Green garlic (looks like scallions, tastes like garlic) – Last fall, we planted garlic cloves that grew into the stalks we harvested this week.  If left to grow until mid-summer, the slim white bulb on this week’s garlic will divide and form the usual cluster of cloves in a garlic bulb.  This year’s green garlic is robust.
Preparation: Green garlic is more pungent than scallions, so slice thinly and use sparingly when raw.  It mellows when cooked.  Chop and add to any cooked dish that would benefit from garlic.  Use the white bulbs and pale green stems.  Avoid the dark green stems and leaves, as these are fibrous.

‘Goldrush’ russet potatoes –  Please refrigerate these potatoes.  They are in great shape now but will sprout within days if stored at room temperature.  They’ve been stored all winter and want to grow.  Store in a paper bag to protect from light, even in the fridge.  We grow everything we send in our CSA boxes except potatoes and mushrooms, both of which we buy from organic growers that we trust.  We purchased these potatoes from Jesse Perkins at Vermont Valley Farm.  ‘Goldrush’ are good all-around potatoes with outstanding flavor.  With the predicted weather this weekend, you might want to make potato salad!  Jesse says the potatoes have a higher sugar content because of starch to sugar conversion during cold storage.  The potatoes taste a bit sweet, and will blacken slightly when fried.  It’s a harmless color change due to the sugar conversion.

Rhubarb – Refrigerate in a plastic bag.  FYI, 2 lb of rhubarb yields 6 – 6.5 cups when chopped.
Stewed rhubarb:  This is the simplest way to prepare rhubarb.  Chop rhubarb into one inch chunks.  Stir over medium heat with a small amount of water in the bottom of the pan.  The rhubarb will release moisture as it cooks.  Stew until it softens and falls apart.  Sweeten to taste with honey or sugar.  Eat warm on its own, over vanilla ice cream, on pancakes, etc.

Recipes from chef Pat Mulvey at Local Thyme

Comforting Classics
Quinoa Salad with Spinach, Radishes, and Green Garlic Dressing
Turkey, Arugula and Cranberry (or rhubarb) Chutney Wraps
Rhubarb Sorbetto
How to make a great salad

Outside the Box Recipes
Velvety Lemon Pasta with Spinach
Green Garlic Arugula Pistachio Pesto
Caramelized Rhubarb
Spinach Salad with Rhubarb Vinaigrette

Quick and Easy Recipe
Hummus, Radish, Spinach and Arugula Pesto Wraps

Recipes from Lauren


Takes 45 minutes
Serves 4

4 eggs
1 pound russet potatoes, peeled and cut into rough 1-inch pieces
1 teaspoon Kosher salt plus more for seasoning
Lettuce, washed and cut into rough pieces
1/2 pound asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces, steamed
2 5.5-ounce cans Italian or Spanish tuna, packed in olive oil, drained and shredded
2-4 radishes, very thinly sliced
2 tablespoons capers
1/4 cup favorite olive, preferably kalamata or nicoise, optional
Freshly ground black pepper

Creamy Green Garlic Dressing:
3 green garlic, white and pale green part only, minced
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3/4 cup olive oil

  1. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Carefully lower eggs into water using a slotted spoon. Cook for 9 minutes. Remove to an ice bath for a couple minutes so they are easy to peel.
  2. Refill pot 1/2 full with water along with 1 teaspoon salt and bring to a boil. Add potatoes and boil for 10-15 minutes until potatoes are soft and easily pierced with a fork but not beginning to fall apart.
  3. While cooking, peel and slice hard-boiled eggs.
  4. Whisk together green garlic, vinegar and mustard together in a small bowl until smooth. Slowly drizzle in olive oil while whisking mixture until dressing becomes emulsified (thick and creamy).
  5. When ready to serve, combine lettuce and arugula into four bowls. Top with eggs, potatoes, steamed asparagus, tuna, radishes, capers, and olive oil. Drizzle with dressing and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Adapted from Bon Appetit

Takes 30 minutes
Serves many

2 tablespoons butter
2 green garlic, white and pale green parts only, minced
1 bunch radishes, roots shredded and greens, roughly chopped
Spinach, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
8-ounce cream cheese
2 ounces Parmesan cheese (about 1 cup)
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Add garlic and saute for 1 minutes over medium heat until very fragrant. Add radishes and cook, tossing, until well-coated in butter, 1-2 minutes longer. Add spinach and radish greens along with salt. Cook until wilted and most of the liquid is cooked off., 5-10 minutes. Add cream cheese and cook until melted. Stir in Parmesan and pepper until melted and creamy. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  2. Serve warm with toast, in a bread bowl or with crackers.


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14706 W. Ahara Rd., Evansville, WI 53536
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