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

summer2015_week2

Summer 2015 – August, Week 2

What’s in the Box:

new potatoes, garlic, green kohlrabi, sweet onions, scarlet turnips, red Russian Kale, Italian parsley, purple radishes, blueberries, Lilies

Two notes on the lilies:
1. If your cat likes to chew on your flowers, please keep them up and out of range-lilies are toxic to cats. I have kitties and mine aren’t interested in the lilies, but best to mention it!
2. As soon as your lilies open, pull the anthers to keep them from dropping pollen.

Dear Members,

Today’s boxes, with exception of potatoes and blueberries, are decidedly Spring-like. A little disconcerting for the first week of August, but Summer vegetables are on the way—the zucchini are flowering and growing quickly, the cherry and grape tomatoes are beautiful and turning orange, the pepper plants have little bell peppers already! Our beans are setting velvety purple flowers, and will soon have gorgeous baby beans. We look forward to the abundance of the season soon.

Today’s boxes also include certified organic blueberries from Sidhu Farms in Puyallup. We are excited to partner with other organic growers to include fruit when we can, and especially excited about blueberries! We hope to include organic nectarines and peaches with your upcoming deliveries.

The weather is unlike any season in my farming history. Drier and hotter than ever, it makes growing a challenge and thoughtful water use a must. With no substantial precipitation in sight the field edges and landscapes feel like so much kindling ready to be lit. We don’t have any fires burning around us at this time, thankfully.

Our hearts go out to growers and processors in Washington who have suffered fire damage or are actively working to protect their farms and buildings, and our gratitude to those who are out fighting fires. More information about wildfires currently burning in Washington, acreage, and level of containment can be found here: http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/state/49/

On a different note, I have to admit that I have a love for the Splendid Table, a radio program hosted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper. http://www.splendidtable.org/bio/lynne-rossetto-kasper I appreciate (and identify with) how excited she gets about her food, and I pick up lots of great little notes that make me more thoughtful in the kitchen. This week she was talking a bit about garlic. She indicated that you should never deeply brown garlic, just cook it until it’s fragrant and cooked through, to avoid bitterness. A great tip for this week’s recipes!

Yours,
Heidi

Sautéed Radishes and Greens

1 bunch radishes with greens
4 teaspoons butter, divided
Pinch of sea salt
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Wash radishes and greens well. Quarter radishes and roughly chop radish greens. Set greens aside.
Heat 2 tsp butter in a skillet and sauté radishes with salt until lightly browned in places. Remove from skillet.

Heat remaining butter in skillet and add in garlic. Sauté until fragrant, about 60 seconds. Add greens and stir until wilted, about 2 minutes. Toss in parsley, then radishes, and remove from heat. Serve hot.

Garlicky Red Potatoes with Sweet Onion & Parsley

2 lbs new potatoes
1 sweet onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tablespoons parsley, chopped
Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Wash potatoes and cut into bite-sized pieces. Steam until just tender (about 10 minutes).

In a skillet, drizzle olive oil (a scant Tablespoon or so) and add onion. Saute until translucent and soft, then add minced garlic. Sauté over medium heat for about one minute, until garlic is fragrant. Add parsley and cooked potatoes, along with more olive oil if needed to keep potatoes from sticking. Toss well and remove from heat.

Kohlrabi and Turnip Slaw
adapted from: http://www.marthastewart.com/1049900/kohlrabi-and-turnip-slaw

1 pound kohlrabi (about 2 small heads)
8 ounces turnips
Half of a sweet onion, very thinly sliced
3 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon peanut oil
2 teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
Coarse salt and ground pepper

Cut kohlrabi in half and carefully peel it. Wash turnips and trim roots.
Shred both kohlrabi and turnips with a grater or a food processor with a shredding blade.
In a separate bowl, whisk together lime juice, peanut oil, honey, and sesame oil. Add onion, kohlrabi and turnip to bowl; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Let stand at least 15 minutes before serving.

Curried Kale

1 bunch kale, stems removed, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil, or enough to moisten the bottom of the pan
1 sweet onion, chopped
½ tsp curry powder
1 Tbsp tamari or low-sodium soy sauce
½ cup water

Sauté onion with olive oil over medium heat, stirring occasionally until onion is translucent and browned in places. Add kale and water, then cover, allowing to simmer approximately 8 minutes.

Remove lid and sprinkle kale with curry powder and tamari, then cover and cook a bit longer, until leaves are just tender. Remove lid completely and increase heat to medium high. Cook about 2 minutes more, stirring frequently, to reduce water.

Summer2015_week1

Summer 2015 – July, Week 1

What’s in the Box:

Yellow potatoes, Sweet onions, Cilantro, Gold chard, Purple & green kohlrabi, Arugula, Radishes, Lilies

Dear members,

PLEASE TAKE ONE BOUQUET OF LILIES!

Finally! Our first delivery day! Thank you for participating with us!

It has been a long road this season, but we are pleased to finally get underway. The fields are looking full and promising, Fall and Winter crops look strong. I have posted some photos on Facebook, and hope to get them onto our website shortly as well.

Two notes on the lilies:
1. If your cat likes to chew on your flowers, please keep them up and out of range-lilies are toxic to cats. I have kitties and mine aren’t interested in the lilies, but best to mention it!

2. As soon as your lilies open, pull the anthers to keep them from dropping pollen.

I still have lots of work to do before the deliveries go out tomorrow morning, so I’m including a few recipes and sending these notes out to you now as a reminder. Remember your delivery tomorrow! And thank you!!

Yours,

Heidi

Potato Salad with Toasted Cumin Vinaigrette
Adapted from Bon Appetit, June 2002
Recipe found at http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/potato-salad-with-toasted-cumin-vinaigrette-106617

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 pounds new potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 tablespoon salt

4 large hard-boiled eggs, peeled, coarsely chopped

2 green onions, thinly sliced

1/4 cup chopped sweet onion

1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

1 heaping tablespoon chopped seeded drained pickled jalapeño chilies from jar, 2 tablespoons liquid reserved

Toast cumin seeds in heavy small skillet over medium heat until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Cool. Using spice grinder, coarsely grind cumin seeds. Transfer to medium bowl. Whisk in lemon juice, then oil.

Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.)

Place potatoes in large pot. Add enough cold water to cover. Add 1 tablespoon salt. Boil potatoes until tender when pierced with skewer, about 8 minutes. Drain. Transfer to large bowl. Add eggs, green onions, red onion, cilantro, jalapeño chilies, and 2 tablespoons chili liquid. Pour dressing over salad; toss to coat.

Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to serving bowl. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Roasted Yellow Chard with Feta
Adapted from http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Roasted-Swiss-Chard-with-Feta/Detail.aspx?event8=1&prop24=SR_Thumb&e11=chard&e8=Quick%20Search&event10=1&e7=Recipe&soid=sr_results_p1i2

1 bunch yellow chard – leaves and

stems separated and chopped

1 large onion, chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt and black pepper to taste

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 ounces feta cheese, broken into ½ inch pieces

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a baking sheet with olive oil.

Toss the chard stems and onions in a bowl with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and spread onto the prepared baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven until the chard stems have softened and the onion is starting to brown on the corners, about 15 minutes.


Toss the chard leaves with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt, and black pepper. Sprinkle the leaves over the stem mixture, then sprinkle with feta cheese.

Return to the oven, and bake until the stems are tender, the leaves are beginning to crisp, and the feta is melted and golden, about 20 minutes.

Roasted Kohlrabi
Recipe adapted from: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe-Tools/Print/Recipe.aspx?recipeID=203975&origin=detail&servings=2&metric=false

2 kohlrabi bulbs, peeled

1-1/2 teaspoons olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste

2 tablespoons and 2 teaspoons grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat an oven to 450 degrees F.

Cut kohlrabi into 1/4 inch thick slices, then cut each of the slices in half. Combine olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Toss kohlrabi slices in the olive oil mixture to coat. Spread kohlrabi in a single layer on a baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven until browned, 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally in order to brown evenly.

Remove from oven and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Return to the oven to allow the Parmesan cheese to brown, about 5 minutes. Serve hot.

summer8

Summer 2014 – Week 8

What’s in the Box:

Petite Share:
Beans, Beets, Red Potatoes,
Red Cabbage, Savory & 2 Stems Lilies.
Small shares:
Beans, Beets, Red Potatoes,
Red Cabbage, Savory, Dill & 2 Stems Lilies.
Family shares:
Red Leaf Lettuce, Beans, Beets,
Red Potatoes, Red Cabbage, Savory,
Dill & 2 Stems Lilies.

 

Please remember to take: 2 Stem Lilies

Dear Friends,

Here we are, the first week of August already! These long, warm days bring an abundance of ripening vegetables, and our boxes are reflecting this with new varieties.

We are digging our first potatoes this week; Red Norlands. New potatoes are freshly harvested young potatoes; uncured and so sweet. They have paper-thin skins with lots of moisture inside.  Because they have such thin skins and high moisture levels, new potatoes don’t keep quite as well as more mature, cured, potatoes. Keep them in a paper bag or loosely wrapped plastic in the fridge and use them within a few days.  Don’t yield to the temptation to wash new potatoes before storing them. That bit of dirt clinging to their skins will actually help keep them fresh and any water on the outside will hasten bruising and softening.

We have also started harvesting our first crop of beets for the year, our varieties include: red, gold and the Italian heirloom: Chioggia. The bean harvest is also in full swing; these snap beans are tender enough to be eaten raw, right off the bush (or out of the CSA box).

This week, we have included both Dill and Savory.  Savory, also known as ‘Summer Savory’ is a traditional Mediterranean herb, used to season legumes, fish, eggs and vegetable dishes.  Both these herbs complement one another, and most of the vegetables in your boxes this week, as shown in the recipes below; just one more way we work to accommodate you, our CSA members in your kitchen ease and eating pleasure.

We hope you are enjoying your vegetables, herbs and flowers.  Thank you for your part in our farm—we so appreciate our lovely CSA members.  Have a great week!

Please also continue to talk us up to your friends and coworkers! Word of mouth is far and away our best advertising, and we still have plenty of room in the program for new members. Anyone interested in a Boistfort Valley Farm subscription can still sign up, their order is always pro-rated at the time they do.

Emily

A couple of notes on the included flowers:  When taking your lilies, please be gentle with the ones you are leaving for other members.  They are easily damaged from excessive handling.  Also, the falling pollen can stain a delicate tablecloth; when displaying your lilies, either put something underneath or pluck the little anthers out.  Thank you!