Week #17; Summer into fall.

The recent cold, wet weather is hard on our tomatoes and other remaining summer crops.  We think you will enjoy this week’s orange grape tomatoes.  This ‘Nova’ variety is often one of our best-tasting tomatoes as the season winds down.  

The fall crops love the cooler nights and are growing strongly.  From top, cauliflower, napa cabbage and red cabbage.

We hustled last week to bring in winter squash before the rain.  It’s curing safely in our greenhouse, and should be ready to pack in the CSA boxes soon.

Veggie List & Veggie Notes
Week #17, September 10/11, 2020
– Weekly shares
– EOW/ green

Red potatoes, 3.5 lb
Beets, 2 lb
Plum tomatoes, 4 lb
Orange grape tomatoes, 1 heaping pint, in a paper bag
Red frying peppers (sweet), ~4
Poblano chiles (mildly hot), 2
Leek, 1 or 2
Yellow onion, 1
Basil, 1 sprig
One or two sites get a bell or snack pepper.

Next week’s box will probably contain winter squash and other vegetables.

Red potatoes – These beauties are from Josh and Noah Engel at Driftless Organics.

Poblano chiles (triangular, shiny; green or brown; MILDLY HOT) –  Poblanos are the creme de la creme of chiles.  They have lots of great flavor in combination with manageable heat.  Roast and add to soup or casseroles.  To reduce heat, remove the seeds and midveins.  These will go nicely in a stir-fry with the bok choy and red peppers.

Beets – Storage:  Cover and refrigerate.  Beet roots will store for months.  Wash well to remove leaf fragments.  For all the cooking methods below, wash and scrub the beets but do not peel.  The skins slip off easily once the beets are cooked and cooled.
Cooking beet roots on the stovetop:  Slice or quarter, cover with water in a pot, and simmer until tender.  This will take from 25 to 45 minutes depending on how large the beet pieces are.  Drain.
Roasting beets in oven:  Wash beets, but do not peel.  On a sheet of aluminum foil, put beets (halved or quartered if large), salt, pepper and a few sprinklings of water.  Seal the foil packet, and roast at 400 oF until tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.  Slip off skins once cool.
Microwave:  Slice beets in half and place in a large microwave-proof bowl.  Add ¾ inch water and cover with a plate.  Microwave on high until tender, about 9-20 minutes, depending on your microwave’s power.  Drain and slip off skins.
Uses:  Use cooked beets in cold salads, or dress simply with vinaigrette, onions, salt and pepper.  Beets are also good tossed with sour cream, minced onion, fresh herbs and walnuts.  

Leeks (look like big scallions) – These alliums have a milder flavor than onions.  Nonetheless, they can be used in recipes that call for onions.  To wash, split the leek lengthwise, from the green tops about halfway to the base, leaving the base intact.  Rinse well under running water, separating the layers to flush.  If necessary, split the leek further if soil has penetrated more than halfway down the leek.  Shake dry.  Leeks are generally eaten cooked.  They can be sauteed, steamed or roasted.  Intact leeks will store 2 to 3 weeks if covered loosely and refrigerated.  The outer leaves will yellow.  Just peel them off and discard.  The inner leek layers will be fine.

Yellow onion – These onions are much more pungent, and will fry better, than the sweet Walla Wallas we’ve sent this summer.  

Left; poblano chiles (mildly hot) are triangular and can be either green or chocolate brown.
Right; Frying peppers (sweet) this week are mostly red but could be yellow or tinged with green.  We will not send any fully green fryers this week, to make the poblanos easy to identify.

A few sites get an orange snack pepper.


Visit our 2020 Recipe Log or our 2019 Recipe Log or join our Facebook discussion group.

LOCAL THYME/ Cooking 101
Salad of Beets and Pistachios with Lemon Vinaigrette
Red Potato and Sweet Pepper “Shmash”
Fresh New England Clam Chowder

LOCAL THYME/ Cooking 202
Roasted Root Vegetables with Mustard Seed Vinaigrette
Beet and Leek Risotto with Blue Cheese Sauce
Beef or Bean Enchiladas with Roasted Pepper Sauce

LOCAL THYME/ Quick & Easy Meal
Taco Salad with Pinto Beans & Roasted Poblano Buttermilk Dressing


*This is the one recipe where it doesn’t really matter if the tomatoes you use are rock hard and not as perfectly ripe as summer tomatoes or not. However, if you happened to have the forethought to freeze or can whole tomatoes this summer, feel free to use those. In that case, pour the tomatoes with their juices in a 9 x 11 baking pan instead of a baking sheet.

Serves 8
Takes 1 hour, 20 minutes

2 tablespoons butter
2 large leeks, white and light green parts only, sliced
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 pounds plum tomatoes, cored and halved* (see note)
3 cups chicken stock
1 cup shredded white cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil (or 2 teaspoons dried sage), plus more to taste
1/2 cup heavy cream
Sour cream, optional
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved, optional

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Melt butter in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add leeks, onion, salt and pepper. Cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking until soft. Reduce to low and continue cooking slowly for additional 20 minutes while the tomatoes roast.
Drizzle oil over baking sheet. Add tomatoes, cut side down. (If you are using frozen or canned tomatoes, see directions above). It’s fine if they are crowded but make sure they are in a single layer. If they don’t all fit on one pan, then leave the rest for another use. Sprinkle with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Roast for 40 minutes.
Add tomatoes (with juices) to stock pot along with chicken broth. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes on medium low.
Meanwhile, line a clean, dry baking sheet with parchment paper. Place 8 mounds of cheese on parchment. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for 18 minutes until browned and lacy-looking. Remove from heat and allow to cool before moving.
Remove soup from heat. Puree with an immersion blender (or in a food process or blender). Add basil and cream. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Serve warm with cheese crisp, a dollop of sour cream, halved cherry tomatoes and a sprinkle of basil.

Adapted from Six Seasons

Takes 45 minutes
Serves 2-4

2 pounds red, orange or yellow sweet peppers
2 large, thick slices sourdough bread (about 4 ounces)
6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 leek
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
4 ounces salami, preferably a fancy artisan one with a lot of fennel seasoning
4 ounces fresh mozzarella, torn into bite-size pieces

Preheat your broilers.
Place peppers on a baking sheet and broil them, turning occasionally, until the skins are blackened and blistered. It will take 10-12 minutes. Transfer the peppers to a large bowl and cover with a towel or plate.
Turn the oven temperature to 400 degrees. Tear bread into rough bite-size pieces and toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil and a light sprinkling of salt and pepper on a baking sheet. Place in the oven and bake until golden brown, 10-20 minutes. Check every 5 minutes or so since every type of bread will take a different amount of time. When you check the croutons, also shake the pan to redistribute and get even browning on all sides. You want the croutons to have a crunchy exterior and soft middle.
Once the croutons are done, peel the skins off the peppers, remove the seeds, and cut into thick 1-inch slices. Place in a large bowl with leek, garlic, vinegar, red pepper flakes, cherry tomatoes, 1 teaspoon Kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Toss to combine. Add salami and remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil, and toss again.
Right before serving, add the croutons and mozzarella. Toss mixture once more before serving and enjoy!


Serves 6-8
Takes 1 hour (most of it inactive)

1 tablespoon olive oil
3-4 cups shredded potatoes
2 poblanos, diced
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 pound breakfast sausage, browned
8 eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 cup favorite cheese (I used a lovely dill havarti)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease a 9×13 casserole dish with olive oil.
  3. Combine potatoes, peppers, onion and pork sausage in prepared casserole dish. Toss to combine.
  4. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs and milk. Add hot sauce, mustard powder, and salt. Pour evenly over potato mixture.
  5. Place in pre-heated oven and bake for 35-40 minutes until the eggs are set. Add cheese and cook 5 minutes longer just to melt (or lightly brown).
  6. Enjoy!


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