Summer 2015 week 16

Summer 2015 – October, Week 16

What’s in the Box:

Green cabbage, Carnival squash, Delicata squash, corn, red potatoes, gold turnip, kohlrabi, purple carrots, red chard, broccoli

This week’s boxes are a bit heavy, reflecting the beginnings of the storage season.  Please lift with your legs when you pick up your share!  Next week’s boxes will be even heavier, so you might want to bring a cloth bag or two to help distribute the weight.
This week’s corn is the last of the season, and although it’s quite yummy, it didn’t get the heat that it should have to help it pollinate fully.  Please enjoy it in all its November local-corn glory anyway.  We’ve never had corn in November before, and may never again!

Just a reminder: the Winter share is available now-sign up soon to receive your prepayment discount!  http://boistfortvalleyfarm.csaware.com/2016-january-through-march-only-C6854
I haven’t left much room to wax poetic about the weather or on-farm happenings, but I have yummy recipes to share, so perhaps that’s even better!

Enjoy!

Heidi

 

 

Moroccan-Style Stuffed Acorn Squash
Adapted from AllRecipes.com

2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 Tablespoon butter, melted
1 large Carnival squash, halved and seeded
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 cup garbanzo beans, drained
1/2 cup raisins
1 1/2 Tablespoons ground cumin
salt and pepper to taste
14 ounces low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup uncooked couscous

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Arrange squash halves cut side down on a baking sheet. Bake 45 minutes, or until tender. Dissolve the sugar in the melted butter. Brush squash with the butter mixture, and keep squash warm while preparing the stuffing.

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the celery and carrots, and cook 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté an additional minute, until fragrant.  Mix in the garbanzo beans and raisins. Season with cumin, salt, and pepper, and continue to cook and stir until vegetables are tender.

Pour broth into the skillet, and mix in the couscous. Cover skillet, and turn off heat. Allow couscous to absorb liquid for 10-15 minutes or until cooked.  Fluff with fork and stuff squash halves with the skillet mixture to serve.

Swiss Chard with Spicy Peanut Sauce

Adapted from: http://www.pennilessparenting.com/2014/02/swiss-chard-with-spicy-peanut-sauce.html

1 Tablespoon safflower oil
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1 large onion
1 bunch Swiss chard
1/4 cup water (or as needed)
2 Tablespoons peanut butter
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon honey or sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ginger powder
Salt to taste
Sprinkle of red pepper flakes

Chop onion and sauté in oil until soft and translucent.
Chop up the stems of the Swiss chard and add them to the onion. Cook until they start to soften.
Chop up the leaves of the chard and add them to the pot. Cover, and cook, mixing occasionally, until wilted.
Add the rest of the ingredients, mix well, and cook a few more minutes.

Enjoy!

Kohlrabi and Carrot Slaw
Adapted from http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-kohlrabi-and-carrot-slaw-recipes-from-the-kitchn-46627

1 large kohlrabi, peeled, stems trimmed off, grated
1/4 head cabbage, shredded
2 medium carrots, scrubbed and grated
1/2 onion, grated
4 Tablespoons chopped cilantro
1/4 cup golden raisins (optional)
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 Tablespoon cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Combine the kohlrabi, cabbage, carrots, onion, cilantro, and raisins (if using) in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, cider vinegar, sugar, and salt. Pour the dressing over the slaw, and mix until fully coated. Chill for several hours before serving.

2015_summerweek15 copy

Summer 2015 – October, Week 15

What’s in the Box:

Broccoli
Bunched beets
Corn
Carrots
Sweet onions
Bell pepper
Purple kale
Italian parsley

 

November certainly brought some Autumn weather with it!  It rained about 4 ½ inches here over the weekend, making our field roads muddy and our poor crew soaked.  I’m ever grateful for every one of our farm family every day, but especially this time of year, when each set of hands makes the work just a little bit lighter.

I have added a few veggies to the website for add-on purchase; specifically, carrots, beets, and kraut cabbage.  Additional quantities for eating, juicing, or preserving can be ordered with any of your share deliveries.  Please remember to order 72 hours in advance of your delivery day!

And while you’re on there…Winter shares are live on the web site! By signing up early, you help us to plan for our Winter, and save on your share cost.  As a current member, you should have received a promo code to use at checkout.  Let us know if you haven’t received yours.  The Winter share sign up can be found at: http://boistfortvalleyfarm.csaware.com/2016-january-through-march-only-C6854

Enjoy!
Heidi

 

 

Creamy Corn Chowder

1 Tbsp butter
1 onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken broth
1 boullion cube (with no added salt)
4 ears corn kernels and cobs, kernels removed
1 1/2 cups milk
Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
Pinch of ground cayenne pepper (optional)

In a large pot over medium heat, sauté onion and celery in butter until tender.  Add garlic and parsley and sauté until garlic is fragrant but not browning.

Add the flour, stirring well, to make a pasty mixture. Whisk in the broth. Add the corn, the carrot, the boullion cube, and two of the corn cobs and bring to a simmer for about 20 minutes. Add the milk and heat until just barely simmering.  Add salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste.  Serve hot.


Kale Sautéed with Apple and Onion

Adapted from Gourmet, December 2000

1 medium apple, peeled, quartered, and cored, cut into 1/4-inch wedges
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, choppped
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
1 bunch kale, tough stems and ribs removed and leaves coarsely chopped
1/4 cup chicken or vegetable broth

Heat oil in a 5-quart pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté onion, stirring occasionally, until golden. Add apple and curry powder and sauté, stirring, until apple is almost tender, about 2 minutes. Remove from pan.

Add kale and broth to the pan and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until kale is tender and most of liquid is evaporated, about 5 minutes. Return apple and onion to the pan and cook until just heated through.


Carrot and Beet Slaw with Pistachios and Raisins

Adapted from Bon Appétit, September 2013
Recipe by Joshua McFadden

http://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/carrot-and-beet-slaw-with-pistachios-and-raisins

2 garlic cloves, crushed
¾ cup golden raisins
¼ cup white wine vinegar
About 1 lb medium carrots (any color), scrubbed, julienned
About 1 lb medium beets (any color), peeled, julienned
½ cup (packed) fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
¼ cup (packed) fresh mint leaves
3 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¾ cup unsalted, shelled raw pistachios

Preheat oven to 350°. Spread out pistachios on a small rimmed baking sheet; toast, stirring occasionally until golden brown, 6–8 minutes. Let cool; coarsely chop.

Combine garlic, raisins, and vinegar in a large bowl; let sit 1 hour.

Remove garlic from raisin mixture and discard. Add carrots, beets, pistachios, parsley, mint, lemon juice, and red pepper flakes; season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Add oil; toss gently.

2015summer_week9

Summer 2015 – September, Week 9

What’s in the Box:

Cauliflower
Carrots
Broccoli
Pearl onions
Cucumbers
Kale
Arugula
Treviso radicchio
Pears
Flowers

Dear Members,

Happy Equinox!  In my book it has already been Autumn, as evidenced by foggy mornings, early sunsets, and apples dropping by the bucketful from our old trees.  These apples make the best juice and applesauce, but aren’t the scabless, beautiful, shiny apples that you find in every grocery store and most farmers markets.  These are a bit more humble in appearance, with their scars, bites, and bruises telling the story of the season.

The apples remind me that it’s time to get canning, storing, freezing, pickling for the Winter months.  It’s tricky to do when the season is so full, but I have managed a couple batches of applesauce, and usually talk my mom into freezing some vegetables for us, and making some fruit leather for Natty’s lunches.  I will often undertake just a little extra while I’m cooking dinner.  It doesn’t take much time to steam a couple handfuls of green beans and toss them on a cookie sheet in the freezer.  In the dead of Winter, when I’m browsing in the produce aisle, I’m glad for that extra little bit of work to put our fresh veggies in the freezer.

In today’s boxes, you’ll find our first cauliflower of the season.  We have tried for years to produce pest-free cauliflower, and have reduced our growing season to Autumn only, when the aphid pressure is generally lower.  Alas, the aphids are still with us.  If your cauliflower has pests, cut it into florets and soak it in room temperature salted water for about 20 minutes.  Rinse thoroughly and prepare.

The Treviso is a type of radicchio, and radicchio is indeed bitter.  Mike has insisted for many years that we grow it, along with a few other Italian vegetables, because it reminds him of his childhood and how all his complaining about things he didn’t like to eat turned into a rather earnest liking of them.  If you absolutely cannot handle bitter greens, try roasting it!  It becomes milder and sweeter with cooking.

Enjoy!
Heidi

2015summer_week5

Summer 2015 – August, Week 5

What’s in the Box:

Green, purple & yellow wax beans
Sweet onion, Zucchini & Summer squash
Snow peas, Cucumbers, Broccoli
Basil, Peaches
Lilies

Dear Members,

PLEASE TAKE TWO STEMS OF LILIES

I woke to hazy skies this weekend and my first thought was there’s something wrong with my eyes.  The haze settled, almost like mist, which is not completely uncommon for this time of year, but it hovered in the distance, making me wary.  Mike opened the door and looked back warningly at me.  ‘Something’s on fire.’

Right now it feels like everything’s on fire.  I have volunteered as a firefighter for our community for a couple years now, and every day I hope for rain, and wait for the emergency pager to go off.  With so little water, it’s difficult not to be unnerved by the wind and smoke, even if it isn’t near our farm.

As I’m sure most of you already know, over 30,000 firefighters are currently deployed in Washington State, coming from as far away as Australia and New Zealand, trying to stop the progression of the fires.  More than 250,000 acres have burned, and many of these fires are less than 50% contained.  Here are a few resources to keep you updated.  I linked directly to the morning brief for Monday to give you a glimpse of the statistics.

http://gacc.nifc.gov/nwcc/content/products/intelligence/MORNINGBRIEF.pdf
www.dnr.wa.gov/wildfires

http://gacc.nifc.gov/nwcc/information/firemap.aspx

I am clearly preoccupied by this situation.  Towns have been evacuated and firefighters have lost their lives.  It’s hard to focus all my attention on the farm, even when the season demands it.  The earth is so very dry, and the grass is so much fuel to burn.  We have heard of farms who narrowly escaped fire damage, and those who were not so lucky.

We need rain, and I’m not sure when we’re going to get it.  The first responders have a lot of work ahead of them.

For those of you who have been a part of our farm family for many years, you will know that our home and farm flooded catastrophically in 2007.  Our local grange members opened up the hall to feed our community every single day, for months after the flood, as our community rallied and came together to slog our way through our ruined homes and possessions. Having somewhere to go for a warm meal when we were feeling desperate, defeated, and alone made a real difference in our ability to rebuild our farm. So I am sharing some info about a non-profit group who is helping to feed the first responders in the Okanogan, in case you are inspired to join me in donating:

Soup Ladies http://www.soupladies.org/

Be safe, and be well,

Heidi

2015summer_week4

Summer 2015 – August, Week 4

What’s in the Box:

Broccoli, Turnips, Baby bok choy, Zucchini
Green cabbage, Lettuce, Snow peas
Chives, Nectarines
Snapdragons

Dear Members,

PLEASE TAKE ONE BOUQUET OF SNAPDRAGONS

As you can imagine, it’s a busy time of year for the farm.  Everywhere we turn, something is begging for attention, water, trellising, fertilizing, cultivating…  The field is full of vegetables and lots of other opportunists, or what we refer to (rather unkindly, I suppose) as weeds.  Weeds are weeds by our definition: they’re growing somewhere that we haven’t planted them, and where we don’t want them to grow.  They compete with our crops for water and light, and provide us with an abundance of extra work through the Summer.  We try to take care of the weed pressure before it’s a problem, by getting the weeds out while they’re tiny, or, when that fails, by removing weeds before they go to seed.  Inevitably, there’s a time of year where the weeds seem to be winning the race, and we’re all just plain tired.  That time for us is right now.  Weeds, weeds, in all directions.  Too bad they aren’t more delicious…

The good news is that in the end, we seem to do all right, if not triumph, and we will all happily cross that finish line this year.

We’re excited to send you broccoli with today’s share. With such a hot July, I wasn’t sure if the broccoli would mature nicely, but it has finished with flying colors.  The cabbage is also cute and sweet, and will make a great salad.

We have added organic nectarines from Central Washington.  They are a bit firm (they bruise terribly when they’re fully ripe, and they don’t last long), so leave them at room temperature to allow them to ripen for best flavor and texture.

I’m adding a few recipes and heading back to the field to finish my day.  Enjoy!

Heidi

 

Summer 2014 Week 19

Summer 2014 – Week 19

What’s in the Box:

Petite Share:
Beans, Kohlrabi, Kale, Cucumber, Red Onions,
Buttercup Squash & Ornamental Gourds
Small shares:
Broccoli, Kohlrabi, Spinach, Cucumbers,
Green Peppers, Red Onions,
Buttercup Squash & Ornamental Gourds
Family shares:
Broccoli, Kohlrabi, Spinach, Cucumbers,
Shunkyo Radish, Red Onions, Garlic, Cilantro,
Buttercup Squash & Ornamental Gourds

 

October 21, 2014

Your box contains Ornamental Gourds, Please do not try to eat them! They are bagged to clearly identify them.

Dear Friends,

Next week will be our last delivery, unless of course you sign up for a Winter share!

Things become a bit more challenging here at the farm with the onset of the rainy season, both in the field and in the pack shed.  The work becomes heavier and slipperier. Everybody’s boots lug around an extra few pounds of mud if they have spent any amount of time in the fields.  As we are harvesting heartier vegetables such as potatoes and squash, the pack bins and boxes become heavier.  Yet our field and pack crews seem always to be smiling and full of kind words.  As I have mentioned before, I have the upmost respect for those who harvest and pack our boxes.

In your boxes this week, you will find an abundance of autumn vegetables, among them, broccoli, squash, red onions, and kohlrabi.

A note on the winter squash:  If your schedule prevents you from cooking yours right away, don’t worry–they can sit around on the counter for up to a couple of weeks.  The warmth of the kitchen only makes them sweeter.  They are also a colorful fall decoration, along with the Ornamental Gourds.

Once again, I would like to remind you of our upcoming Winter Season.  Please follow the link and consider signing up.  This includes our Holiday Boxes in November and December, plus 10 deliveries from January through May:

http://boistfortvalleyfarm.csaware.com/2014-2015-winter-share-nov-may-C5635

Thanks again!

-Emily

Summer 2014 – Week 15

What’s in the Box:

Petite Share:
Broccoli, Beans, Corn, Mizuna, Tomatoes, Anaheim Peppers
Cherry Tomatoes & 1 Bouquet of Flowers
Small shares:
Broccoli, Beans, Mizuna, Eggplant, Napa Cabbage, Corn,
Anaheim Peppers, Cherry Tomatoes & 1 Bouquet of Flowers
Family shares:
Broccoli, Beans,Mizuna, Eggplant, Napa Cabbage, Corn,
Anaheim Peppers, Red Leaf Lettuce, Cherry Tomatoes,
1 Bouquet of Flowers
Please remember to take: 1 bouquet of Flowers

 

September 23, 2014

Dear Friends,

The sunlight is golden these days, less intense.  Sunset is creeping in earlier each day.  By the calendar and all of our senses it is autumn and while we are nearing the end of many of our high-summer crops like tomatoes, cucumbers and beans, they are not gone yet!  We are still opening Summer’s gifts and that realization causes me to really savor one more bite of cucumber salad and to smile with the juicy ‘pop’ of one more cherry tomato.

As with all things seasonal we must meet the challenge to be mindful of transitions, to truly taste the sun soaked produce of summer even as we look forward to what fall has to offer.

It is all hands on deck here at the farm.  Harvesting, planning, packing, curing – so much to do!  This is a heady time of transition: Cooler nights can slow a crop’s growth and as Summer squash begins to give way to autumn’s broccoli and Napa cabbage, beets and carrots and cabbage are on the rise!

Even as you savor your favorite tastes of late summer remember to lock in the next season’s delights.  Our 2014/2015 Winter Shares are now available and now is the time to take advantage of our very best pricing.  Whether planning to stock your own larder or making out your holiday gift list be sure to use the coupon code from last week’s email to secure the very best deal!

Take a look at our website for easy ordering and never hesitate to contact us with questions!

http://boistfortvalleyfarm.csaware.com/2014-2015-winter-share-nov-may-C5635

-Emily

Summer 2014 – Week 12

What’s in the Box:

Petite Share:
Snow peas, Celery, Cherry Tomato,
Sweet Corn, Purplette Onions,
Summer Squash, Cucumbers,
Thai Basil, Jalapenos & 1 Bunch of Flowers
Small shares:
Snow peas, Celery, Purplette Onions,
Cherry Tomato, Chard,Sweet Corn,
Eggplant, Cucumbers, Thai Basil,
Jalapenos & 1 Bunch of Flowers
Family shares:
Snow peas, Celery, Walla Walla Spring Onions,
Broccoli, Cherry Tomato, Chard, Sweet Corn,
Eggplant, Cucumbers, Thai Basil,
Jalapenos & 1 Bunch of Flowers
Please remember to take: 1 Bunch of Flowers

 
Dear Friends,

Nothing says ‘summer’ quite like ears of sweet corn: buttery, salty, and delicious.  Here at the Farm, our corn crop is in full harvest, and we are thrilled to add it to this week’s delivery. For me, the first ripe ear of corn is rivaled only by the first ripe strawberry, and I am glad they don’t happen at the same time. I could never choose.

Sweet corn, though it has become a bit of a novelty in our modern culture, has an ancient history of necessity for the Latin American world.  Originating as a wild grass in southern Mexico, it was first domesticated between 9000 and 8000 B.C.  By 1500 B.C. it had become an essential part of the diet and culture of the Olmecs and Mayans, who used it for food, medicine, and utilitarian purposes such as baskets and moccasins.

When purchasing sweet corn seed, today’s farmer has myriad choices. Corn has been bred perhaps more than any other plant. There are super sweets, sugar enhanced, super sugar enhanced… and those are just the descriptors. Then one has to choose color, finishing date, and too many other characteristics to mention.  While we love the ‘sweetness’ of corn, we also value traditional corn flavor, and choose varieties that have a flavor that is not overshadowed by pure sticky sweetness.

This year at Boistfort Valley Farm, we are growing two varieties of sweet corn.  ‘Luscious’, an early bi-color and a new (to us) variety that replaces an old favorite, and ‘Bodacious’, a yellow sweet corn whose old-fashioned flavor is a real standout.

As always, thank you for choosing us to be your farmers.  Enjoy the bounty this week!

-Emily

Summer 2014 – Week 3

What’s in the Box:

Petite Share:
Romaine Lettuce,  Spinach, Baby Bok Choy, Cilantro,
Cherries & a Desktop Bouquet.
Small shares:
Romaine Lettuce, Spinach, Baby Bok Choy, Garlic Scapes,
Mint, Cilantro, Cherries & a Desktop Bouquet.
Family shares:
Romaine Lettuce, Leaf Lettuce, Spinach, Baby Bok Choy,
Garlic Scapes, Broccoli, Cilantro, Cherries &
a Desktop Bouquet.

 

Please remember to take: 1 Bouquet of Flowers

Dear Friends,

The other morning I found myself with my camera, in one of our fields nestled against the hills, in the heart of the Boistfort Valley.  The air was warm and steamy, the sun having not yet emerged from the clouds after a rain.  As I walked along the rows of beans and kraut cabbage, swallows and gold finches swooped ahead.  Except for the carefully planted field, no other evidence of human touch existed in my view—not a car, not a building, nothing but the hills and trees and the freshness of the air.

As a teenager growing up in the valley, I remember taking hikes in search of places such as this; hidden places, untouched by human necessity or exploitation.  Now, I am reassured that in a world where corporate agriculture and environmental decline have become commonplace, there remain these “hidden” places, in which vegetables quietly grow.

In speaking of this produce, you will find this week’s box full of luscious spring lettuce and baby bok choy, along with some very summery offerings—Spinach, cherries, and young broccoli!  Our Romaine lettuce is so big & beautiful this week, that we’ve provided 2 recipes to inspire you, although they both add an unusual heat factor to the lettuce; very worth experimenting with, in my opinion!

And CHERRIES!  I must mention the cherries once again!!  We are so excited about the arrival of summer fruit, that we’ve added sweet Bing Cherries to the share this week as a special treat!  If you love fruit as much as we do, please check out our new Fruit Share, coming in July!

Have a wonderful week and enjoy your produce!

-Emily