Week #23; Farm walk, Final EOW/green

Our farm walk worked out quite well, despite the chilly weather.  The rain stopped just before members began arriving.  Whew.  I’d like to share a little of the day, for those who couldn’t attend.



I distributed a map and list of tour stops before the farm walk, so people could print a copy at home, or view it on their phone.



Tour stop #3.  During the summer, Steve plants cover crops as we finish harvests from each field.  By this time of year, many fields are planted to cover crops.  Top; young rye (grass) and hairy vetch (tendrils).  These seem fragile but will overwinter and explode into growth in spring.  Bottom, a lush field of ryegrass.  This cover crop should die over the winter, leaving the field ready for next year’s crop.


Tour stop #4. Our storage carrot fields are looking good. We’ll harvest these from now until early November, sooner if the weather hurries us. Carrots can handle some frost.


Tour stop #7.  It’s worth the effort!


Tour stop #8.  The golden flowers frosted on Thursday night but new blossoms opened by Sunday morning.


Tour stop #9.  The brassica fields look great.  These crops shrug off cold weather.


Tour stop #14.  We opened our first kale & collards field for gleaning.  We stopped harvesting from this field once our second planting was ready.  The field is weedy but there’s good greens to be found.


Tour stop #15.  We posted the sign at top but then strong winds on Saturday ripped and blew about the row covers.  We replaced them on Monday.  It’s not unusual for weather to undo our efforts.

That’s it!  I hope you enjoyed the tour, whether in person or remotely.  Beth

Veggie List & Veggie Notes
Week #23, October 22/23, 2020
– Weekly shares
– EOW/ green

Sweet potatoes, ~2 lb
Brussels sprouts, ~1 lb
Koji greens
Leeks, about 1.25 lb
Carrots, ~2 lb
Parsnips, ~1.5 lb
Green peppers, 1 bell + 1 or 2 frying
Anaheim chiles, 2 (medium heat, in bag with carrots)
Scallions, 1 small bunch
Garlic
– Some sites get broccoli.
– Some sites get cauliflower.
– Some sites get a butternut squash.

Next week’s box will probably contain red cabbage, winter squash, sweet potatoes, yellow potatoes, Brussels sprouts, celeriac, onions, and more.

Sweet potatoes – Store at room temperature.  Sweet potatoes will suffer chilling injury in the fridge.
Some folks get our ‘Beauregard’ variety (orange skin).  Some get ‘Bayou Belle’ (purple skin, long roots)
– For best flavor, cook your sweet potatoes so they brown and caramelize.  We have a simple, favorite way to roast sweet potatoes.  We used to prepare sweet potato fries in the oven.  Now we just quarter the potatoes, rub with olive oil, dust with salt and place cut-side-down on a cookie sheet.  Roast in a 450 F oven without turning until soft.  The flavors will caramelize (like sweet potato fries) but preparation is simpler and the cooking time less exacting.  Slender sweet potato fries go from undercooked to overcooked in the blink of an eye.  Larger slices are less exacting, and therefore are easier.  Small sweet potatoes can be cut just in half.  Jumbos will need to be chopped into pieces.  Otherwise, they take a long time to cook.
– This first batch of sweet potatoes will need slightly longer cooking than ones from the supermarket, perhaps because they contain higher moisture so soon after harvest.
– Sweet potatoes are good at any size. We have cooked everything from tiny to jumbo and consistently find that all sizes taste good.

Brussels sprouts – 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

Koji greens (head of dark green leaves) – Refrigerate.
 Koji greens are a lot like Yukina if you know that one; dark green with a nice balance of bitter flavor but not too strong.  Like tat soi but with larger, lusher leaves and not so many leaf stalks.  Recipes that use mustard greens or bok choy will work with Koji.  In a contest for my favorite fall green, Koji runs neck and neck with bok choy.

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.

Carrots – Refrigerate in a plastic bag.

Parsnips (These look like large white carrots) – Those long, white roots are not carrots, they are parsnips. The two vegetables are related.  When cooked, parsnips are sweet and starchy.  For the best flavor, brown them to caramelize the sugars.  Here are a few ideas for parsnip preparation:
– Caramelize the parsnips by roasting them in a vegetable medley.
– Parsnip fries are delicious: cut like French fries, oil lightly, place on a cookie sheet and roast in a hot oven until brown and cooked through.
– Try substituting grated parsnips in a potato pancake recipe. They brown beautifully and are very tasty.
– Steve loves pan-fried parsnips with onions and garlic.

Peppers – Refrigerate.  Eat soon.  These were protected under row cover but exposed to cold nights, which shortens their storage life.

Anaheim chiles (long, slender, red or green; pack in carrot bag) – Refrigerate.  Eat soon.  These were protected under row cover but exposed to cold nights.  That shortens their storage life.
These flavorful chiles have medium heat, although we find that these late-harvested ones seem to be pretty mild.   They look deceptively like frying peppers, so we packed your Anaheims in the carrot bag, to make them easy to recognize.

Scallions – Refrigerate in a plastic bag.

Cauliflower or broccoli – Cover and refrigerate.  


Beautiful, beautiful Koji greens

RECIPES

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

LOCAL THYME/ Cooking 101
Veggie Pot Pie
Brussels Sprout and Sweet Potato Dressing
Koji Greens and Scallions Frittata

LOCAL THYME/ Cooking 202
Moroccan Lamb and Vegetable Tagine
Brussels Sprout Salad with Craisins, Pecans and Creamy Maple Balsamic Dressing
Quinoa, Koji Greens and Egg Breakfast Bake

LOCAL THYME/ Quick & Easy Meal
Rice Noodle Stir Fry with Carrots and Peppers

RECIPES FROM LAUREN


LEEK & PEPPER PRETZEL DIP
Takes 10 minutes
Makes 3 cups
Serves a crowd

8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1 large leek, quartered and sliced
1 green pepper, seeded and diced very small
2-3 anaheim peppers, seeded and diced very small
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt

In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add leek, peppers, mayonnaise and salt. Stir to combine until uniformly mixed. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired.
Serve immediately or chilled with pretzels. Dip lasts about a week.
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FALL GRAIN BOWL WITH MILLET & MUSHROOMS
Takes 1 hours
Serves 4-6 (as a main dish)

1-2 large carrot, shredded
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 pound peeled and cubed sweet potato (about 2 cups)
1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved (about 2 cups)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon Kosher salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
2 tablespoons butter, thinly sliced
1/2 pound cremini, shiitake or oyster mushrooms, sliced
1 cup millet (or other favorite grain)
2 cups water
1 tablespoon chicken (or vegetable) bouillon
1 bunch Koji greens, stems removed and leaves finely chopped
1 bunch scallions, sliced
1/2 cup toasted pepitas (or other favorite seed or nut)

Lime Maple Dressing:
1/4 cup walnut or hazelnut oil (or other neutral oil)
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 fresh lime, juiced
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. In a small bowl, combine carrots with vinegar and sugar. Toss to combine and let sit while you prepare the rest of your meal.
3. On a large rimmed baking sheet, combine sweet potatoes and brussels sprouts with oil, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Place in oven and roast for 30-35 minutes, until Brussels are crisp and sweet potatoes are tender. Rotate pan at least once while cooking.
4. On a second large rimmed baking sheet, scatter butter slices across. Sprinkle mushrooms across the pan and finish with the remaining salt and pepper. Roast for 15 minutes until mushrooms are softened (but not dried out) and butter is browned.
5. While the veggies and mushrooms roast, prepare your millet. Toast dry grains in a medium saucepan for 5 minutes over medium heat, being careful not to burn. Add water and stock, and give it a good stir. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, cover and reduce to low. Cook for 15 minutes then turn off the burner, but leave the millet covered for 5 minutes to finish absorbing the liquid.
6. In a small bowl, prepare your dressing by whisking all ingredients together until smooth.
7. To serve, top millet with roasted vegetables and mushrooms. Add grains, scallions, and dressing and toss to combine. Serve warm or at room temperature. Add pepitas right before eating.
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PORK CARNITAS WITH ROASTED VEGGIES

Serves 6-8
Takes 8 hours inactive time, 30 minutes active time

3 to 4 pound pork shoulder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black peppers
1/3 cup salsa
1/4 cup Worcestershire
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 shallots, diced
3/4 cup water
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon Rosemary
Roasted Veggies:
4 cups cubed sweet potato
1-2 large carrots, peeled and cubed
1-2 large parsnips, peeled and cubed
1 large head broccoli or cauliflower (about 2 cups), cut into florets, optional
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon thyme

1. In the morning before you head to work*, place pork shoulder roast on a cutting board and generously pat with salt and pepper. Turning and pressing onto any excess that falls onto the cutting board.
2. Place roast in crock pot. Add salsa, Worcestershire, brown sugar, and shallots all around the edges of the pork. Pour water over this mixture. Sprinkle pork with spices, cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
3. When you get home (or on Sunday when you have plenty of time), flip the pork over and turn your crock pot to keep warm then preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
4. In a very large bowl, combine sweet potatoes, carrot, parsnip, and broccoli or cauliflower with oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Stir until everything is evenly coated with oil and spices. Pour out onto two baking sheets or roasting pans. If you don’t have a very large bowl, just combine all ingredients on baking sheets as evenly as you can.
5. Roast for 40-50 minutes until veggies are tender and browned in places being sure to rotate pans at least once during baking for even cooking.
6. While the veggies roast, shred your pork with two forks and let soak in the delicious juices.
7. Serve pork with roasted veggies and a generous amount of that sauce remaining in the bottom of the crockpot.

*I also like to do the legwork of a crockpot overnight from time to time since I know I’ll be around in 6-8 hours whereas sometimes my work day can be longer than that. This means prepping the pork the night before and then just throwing it in a tupperware or pyrex and into your fridge in the morning.

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