Small Family Farm CSA

We Dig Vegetables

 

August Thirteenth

Our farm has a unique way of getting the work done.  We have Adam and I, two Full-time employees, and a team of over 30 worker-shares who work a 3 and a half hour shifts each week in exchange for their CSA box.  It’s an impressive assembly of community members who work in relay taking their shifts and turns.  This makes our farm a continuous revolve of familiar faces who appear and disappear and then re-appear again at their scheduled times, like an orchestra of people playing their notes and instruments in key and on beat.  Me, the daily constant.  The orchestrator. Japanese_EggplantJapanese Eggplant

It’s fascinating to watch.  To watch this community of people come together over a box of food who eagerly wish to participate in the food system.  We have an eclectic assembly of workers that range from their teenage to senior years.  Some have experience on other large or small vegetable farms, and some have never done any kind of gardening in their lives.  It’s interesting to hear their stories and see what brings them here.  Some are here because they love the idea of working for food and taking an active role in growing their own food.  Some love the barter system, the athletic experience, or the opportunity to get to play in the dirt for one morning a week-a refreshing way to mix up the work-week for someone with an office job.

No matter their experience level, their background or their reason for coming, they all have something in common; our workers are the hardy kind.  These are the consistent, reliable, committed and enthusiastic folk that could help you raise a barn or re-build after a natural disaster or something.  They’re wonderful people to know, my favorite kind of people in fact.  They show up in their work boots and sun hats with water bottle in hand and ready for anything-no matter the weather forecast. 

It’s nice for us full-timers too to have fresh faces and fresh conversation and fresh ideas circulating through our mornings and afternoons.  Sometimes the conversations turn political and the mornings pass by quickly.  Everyone brings their special talents and history and background, everyone is accepted, and it feels like a democracy…or something very extensive and diverse. 

My social life might also be lacking considerably if not for this community of helpers who also happen to make up my circle of friends.   I think these people, some in their fifth and sixth season here, have gotten to know me very well.  I tend to be a bit on the work-aholic side of the spectrum and it can be hard to peel me away from the farm between the months of May and October for a social gathering or leisurely outing.  I need these people to come here to not only help get the work done, but to help me keep a certain level of social sanity in my life that I probably would not otherwise get.    

The farm is alive in so many ways.  We have the soil and microbial life, for which we all owe homage, we have the food culture in our boxes that explodes like fireworks into your lives and bellies and homes, and we have this vibrant community of people who make it all happen with their bare hands and kind words and truthful commitment.  We are thankful for the workers and the shareholders alike.  This farm is truly a special place because of the colorful quilt work that holds it together. 

Sooo….What’s in the Box????

Watermelon or Cantelope-  A red watermelon or an orange Cantelope. 

Red Cabbage-  A dense head of cabbage to add color to your life. 

Green Beans-  A generous 1.38lbs of green beans for everyone this week.  Imagine the time it takes to pick all of those beans!  Some of the beans got wet this week because it was raining while we transferred the beans from the cooler to the packing shed to bag them up.  Beans really don’t like to be wet or they will mold in their bags.  We recommend using up your beans ASAP.  They’re better when they’re fresh anyways! 

Eggplant-  You may have received a standard black eggplant or you may have received a long, Japanese eggplant.  They are very similar in flavor, but vary a little in how you can cook with them in the kitchen. 

Broccoli-  Beautiful, tight and perfect heads of broccoli this week.  Just about enough broccoli for everyone- but we ran short on the last 25 boxes or so.  Still, every box left the packing line bulging and would barely close. 

Red Beets-  The greens on these beets still looked okay, so we kept them on.  Beets will keep well for months if you remove their tops and store them in a plastic bag in the fridge. 

Summer Squash-  A waning summer squash harvest.  Enjoy your squashies while they last, they’re going out of season!

Cucumbers-  Going, going….  Almost gone!  We had a good run on cukes while they lasted, but we still have plenty of amazing food coming up to put in the boxes!

White Onion-  A fresh onion for every family!Pickin_PeppersWorkers Pickin' Peppers

Sweet Corn-  A generous 5-6 ears per member depending on some of the sizes.  A fair amount of raccoon damage in the sweet corn patch this week.  We still have one more week of sweet corn givings up ahead and we’re hoping to keep the raccoons out of it for one more week.  Thanks to Mugzie, our guard dog, who stands watch out there for us every night. 

Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers-  These are the long, lime-green or slightly orange-ing banana pepper.  Technically they’re a hot pepper, but these are very mild. 

Jalapeno Peppers-  These ones pack a little more punch, don’t let the kids get ahold of them! 

Tomatoes-  A growing tomato harvest.  This week we had a nice giving of 2.78 lbs per member. 

Sun Gold Cherry Tomato or Sweet Red Bell Peppers-  The sweet peppers have begun!  This is very exciting for me!  If you didn’t get a red pepper, you did get some cherry tomatoes, so all is fair in love and war! 

Baby Head Lettuce-  Some very small heads of lettuce this week that we felt like we needed to pick because they were bolting from the heat, long day-length and worsening drought on the farm. 

Red Curly Kale-  A beautiful bouquet of red curly kale this week for the cooking-green lovers out there! 

Recipes

Cool Toddie (Cucumber Drink)

Ratatouille

Warm Red Cabbage Salad

August Sixth

What a pleasant summer it has been.  I did hear the cicadas crying out a few times, but I’m pretty sure they’re just testing out their capabilities.  Cicadas only really love to do their spirited song on the hottest hours of a summer day.  I can’t say that I really miss the Cicada sound this season and am very thankful for the moderate temperatures.

 

While the crew this summer has been loving the mild temperatures, and with another easy week in the forecast, we’re loving the moderate season.  I can’t quite say the same thing for the crops.  Our crops are looking great, but the peppers and tomatoes would likely start turning colors a bit sooner and push their fruits a little harder if they could get their summer heat bath that they love.  The sweet corn is also tolerating the milder summer, but it too loves those hot, humid, muggy days that make the rest of us want to take a nap in their shade. 

A teaser of a ½ inch of rain fell on the farm this Monday.  Any rain at all at this point is much appreciated.  The soil was starting to look very dry and the crops thirsty.  Farmer Adam has been busy running the irrigation lines keeping routine water to the peppers, tomatoes, eggplant, and now our fall carrots, cabbage and beets are getting water too.  We’re hoping for more chances of rain to appear in the forecast, but it’s not looking too promising for our zip code. 

Sooo….What’s in the Box?????

A heavy, heavy week of harvesting!

Watermelon or Cantelope-  Either a red watermelon or an orange Cantelope this week.  Both patches were ripe and ready.  Will there be melons again next week?  Maybe, we’ll see how the ripening goes for the next wave!

Carrots-  Another “sweet” giving of carrots.  Fresh out of the ground on Monday morning.  Nothing compares to the fresh flavor these carrots have. 

Celery-  Another week of celery!  Likely one more week of Celery givings in our future and that may be all we have to share for Celery this season.  Do your best to enjoy it while it lasts.  Think of blanching and freezing or drying it. 

Sweet Corn-  Sweet corn likes to be kept very cold!  The flavor will be most sweet if you eat it the day you get it.  Sweet corn will loose sweetness every day and hour it spends off it’s mother plant as the sugars will turn to starch and it just won’t be as good.  It it as soon as possible if you can!  We’re hoping for a couple more weeks of sweet corn givings the next two weeks!  Yes! 

Asian Tempest Garlic-  These are a red-skinned variety of garlic that was just harvest this week.  They'er a little rustic looking as we mow off the tops of the garlic, but we cleaned them up a little bit for you.  The wrapper around each clove of garlic that we usually call the "paper" around the cloves is not yet cured or dried down into a papery consistency.  You'll notice that each wrapper around each clove is still a thick, juicy membrane, so you'll have a thicker membrane to peel off of your garlic cloves this week.  If you let it sit in a cool, dry place it will cure down for you in the next few weeks and resemble more of your dried garlic that you're used to.  Notice how juicy and fresh the garlic is when it's fresh out of the ground like this.  YUM!  

White Onion-  For your everyday use!  

Cucumbers-  This is peak week for cucumbers.  After this week we’re expecting the number of cukes in your boxes to go way down.  Enjoy the cukes while you have them, they’re going out of season on our farm fast!  The cucumber harvesters’ backs are looking forward to it! 

Summer Squash, Zucchini, Patty Pans-  We’re also expecting production of our soft summer squashes to go down next week as well.  The plants are still flowering like crazy, but the squash bugs are starting to show up and the plants are looking pretty tired. 

Tomatoes-  Lucky for us, tomatoes are just getting started!  We love leaving the field with a truck full of tomatoes!  We have enough plants in the field to fill boxes with tomatoes, but with the cooler summer, it will be interesting to see how they produce after all.  We sill have several more weeks with increasing production ahead of us! 

Jalapeno Pepper-  These are the little green ones that can be plenty hot, don’t let your kids get ahold of them! 

Hungarian Hot Wax Pepper-  Also called a banana pepper.  These guys can surprise you with a little heat sometimes, but generally they are quite mild in the world of hot peppers. 

Red Leaf or Green Leaf Lettuce-  To our amazement, we’re still harvesting lettuce!  It can get a little more bitter this time of year from the heat of the summer.  Lettuce is a cool-weather loving plant, so we’re lucky that our summer successions are coming to fruition. 

Basil-  Not a wonderful year for basil either in this cool summer, but still a nice bunch for all.  Remember that basil does not love refrigeration.  It will turn black if put into a cold refrigeration.  Basil holds best if trimmed and then put in a glass or vase like cut flowers.  Basil dehydrates beautifully for the food-preserving enthusiasts amongst you! 

Broccoli or Cauliflower-  There was almost enough broccoli or Cauliflower for everyone, but every box left the line packed to the brim.  If you did not receive Broccoli or Cauliflower you may have received extra sweet corn, cucumbers, squash or an eggplant.  There was plenty of food for all, but we came up a bit short on the broc and cauli. 

Recipes-

 Cream of Celery Soup

Tomato Onion and Cucumber Salad

July Thirtieth

I feel like I owe a tribute to my husband.  I write all of these newsletters and I answer most of the e-mails and I’m the person you’ll get to work with if you come to the farm any day out of the week.  I’m the face and the personality of the farm, while my dear, loving and loyal husband works feverously in the background.Cherry_TomatoesIt begins! The flavors and colors of Summer! My personal favorite, a ripe Sun Gold Cherry Tomato!It is interesting how my initial interest in farming was for non-traditional reasons rooted in a strong spirit of independence and maybe even laced with some feminist ideals.  I was once a highly self-governing individual.  But I find it fascinating how marriage, children and the farm have de-veiled my illusions of independence.  As hard as I am able to work alone and with as much as I may wish to achieve, I am still highly dependent on the people who come to help on this farm.  And increasingly, as they say marriage ages like a good wine or cheese over time, I am dependent on my wonderful husband. 

Adam is the guy who makes sure that no balls hit the ground.  I’m the one throwing the balls in the air.  He does all of the dirty work behind the scenes that the rest of us don’t even think about.  He’s not working with the harvest crews, or doing the hand-weeding with the weeding crews or even mulching or washing most days.  He’s the guy running the irrigation lines and keeping the pump going, spraying to control the flea beetles and cabbage loopers, and doing the nerve-racking and highly-skilled cultivation jobs that I prefer not to think about. 

Adam does daily field walks monitoring the sweet corn patch for raccoon damage, the ripeness of the melons, and daily he is walking the onion rows and potato rows to see how close they are to harvest.  Honestly, I can’t take all of the credit as the great farmer who keeps constant updates on the crops and how close they are to harvest.  I get my updates from Adam most times.  My brain stays wrapped around leading our daily work crews and keeping everyone busy and then switches like a light switch to our daughter and dinner and the house at 5pm.  We make a great team in this way.

It is not uncommon to look off in the fields and see Adam standing alone and looking at the plants or walking rows.  It’s actually a common sight around here.  He frequently takes leaf samples to the computer room to do google searches to find out what disease is living on the pepper plant leaves, or what the most effective fungicides are to control blights and diseases.  He even knows all of the UW Madison disease pathologists and local soil agronomists by their first names.  He’s the guy who you can save your soil test and fertility questions for.  He’s more than he seems behind his quiet, bearded and tall, slim stance.  We’re lucky to have him. 

Sooo….What’s in the Box????

Melons-  Delicious honeydews.  These are a green flesh variety with more of a yellow outer rind when ripe. 

Celery-  Unfortunately, when celery comes into season, it all comes into season at once.  You’ll have to get creative with your celery uses as we have at least another two givings in our future.  Cream of celery soup?  My mother in-law said that she is going to blanche and freeze some for soups-I may do the same!  One member said she wanted to try her hand at a home-made celery salt.  Get creative!

Carrots-  Now this is what carrots should taste like!  I get really excited about this because the flavor in these carrots does all of the explaining for me as to why fresh, local organic food puts California produce to shame-organic or not.  What a difference! 

Cucumbers-  Okay, the workers on the farm, mostly me, are getting really sick of picking cucumbers.  I’m happy that we’re having a bumper crop cucumber year because I know that everyone loves cucumbers, but my body will be happy when the cucumbers are over!  This Cucumber Soup recipe uses a lot of cucumbers! lettuce_washingWho is that hiding behind that head of Romaine? Amy, is that you?

Lemon Cucumbers-  These are those little yellow guys floating around at the bottom of your box. 

Summer Squash, Zucchini and Patty Pans-  If you’re feeling a little “squashed” remember that you can grate your squashes with cheese grater and freeze them in a zip lock bag.  Use your grated squash in the winter months in zucchini bread, to beef up your lasagnas or cannelloni stuffings, add to soups and chilis or to thicken your spaghetti sauce. 

Onion-  Because who cooks without onions?

Broccoli/Cauliflower-  A heavy week of broccoli and cauliflower harvest.  The cauliflowers out numbered the broccoli, so we were shipping quite a few of those.  Broccoli and Cauliflower like to be stored in very cold temperatures.  Use your broccoli up first as it doesn’t keep well outside of refrigeration. 

Eggplant-  Either a standard Black Beauty Eggplant or a long, Japanese eggplant for everyone this week! 

Lettuce-  Either a Red Leaf, Green Leaf or Romaine lettuce this week.  We were surprised at how beautiful the lettuce looks still, even in late July this year! 

Cilantro-  A fresh bunch of cilantro for everyone again this week because it’s a popular item! 

Jalapeno Hot Pepper-  These are the little green ones that pack a little punch. 

Hungarian Hot Wax Bananna Pepper-  These are the longer, lime green colored pepper.  The banana peppers do have some heat to them, but usually it is much more mild than the Jalapenos. 

Swiss Chard-  More perfect and gorgeous bunches of swiss chard!  If it’s not your favorite flavor, you have to admit that it sure is beautiful!  One member told us of making chard muffins.   I found a recipe online below! 

Tomatoes-  Okay, this is the very beginning!  You may have received a half-pint clamshell with orange, Sun Gold Cherry Tomatoes in it or you may have received one or two loose tomatoes of any kind.  It could be a pink brandywine heirloom, it could be a darker colored cherokee purple when ripe or just one of your standard red romas.  It could also have been a yellow Taxi, an early-maturing yellow tomato.  We harvest any tomatoes we see when picking with a “blush”.  This means that we harvest tomatoes with any kind of color on them because once they start ripening, the ripen quickly and we don’t want them to get too soft on the vine so that we can’t handle them or that they won’t ship to you.  It is crucial that you leave them outside of refrigeration if you want them to ripen and offer their best flavors. 

Recipes-

Savory Zucchini Chard Muffins-  Thanks Jared for the inspiration! 

Zucchini Bread Pancakes-  Thanks Kami!

Zucchini and Summer Squash Risotto-  Thanks again, Kami!  These both look amazing!  

Cold Cucumber Soup  Adrianne swears this is delish!  

July Twenty Third

The intensity of the summer has a way of stripping us of our layers.  We enter the season in the spring well rested, with our homes and lives organized, and our thoughts even somewhat still, structured, prepared and grounded.  The season begins with days slowly lengthening.  We’re eased with near trickery into days where the sun shines half past nine pm.  We continue working, preserving, laundering and maintaining our lives with fury into the late of the night.  We become stretched and squeezed and we exhaust our energy reserves to keep up with the quickening pace. lemoncukesLemon Cucumbers!

Admittedly, I do live in my own little world here on this farm, but I assume the rest of you are feeling it too.  The summer madness.  The ‘heat’.  The buzz.  It has a way of putting us to the test.  Here it is, the real stuff that we’re made of.  The raw person we are when you catch us tired, hungry, and needing a shower with still more heavy lifting and work to do before the day is over.  How do we behave, how do we react, how do we handle?  How good is your self-practice? 

Farming can be a stressful occupation.  Incorporated into the heaviness of the season can be long periods of no rain, insect and disease pressure, machinery break downs, workers getting sick and so on.  It’s up to us, who are captaining the ship, to ride the waves.  Farming is teaching me patience and is helping me build my character in ways I never imagined it would.  Most days, upon reflection, I’m happy with how it has helped form me and challenge my nature. 

Now with the “heat on”, and the heat index rising, the obstacles begin.  The summer bounty is about to really start picking up.  Soon the tomatoes will start ripening, the peppers will start turning colors, the melons will slip from their vines and the sweet corn ears will swell.  The green beans are flowering and the eggplants are starting.  Our heat-loving plants are getting ready to start sharing their secrets. 

I am reminded why it’s all worth it.  If not for my own personal love for the best food money can buy, I might not be willing to endure the intensity of this life.  But nothing beats our sweet sun-gold cherry tomatoes, or eating raw sweet corn right off the plant, or munching on sweet peas and celery stalks while you work-just a moment away from it’s source.  There is something very freeing about this.  Something that helps a person think about what is fundamentally important and enriching in life. 

I consider myself lucky.  Even at the end of the day with my nails filled with dirt, my feet tired, my clothing turning to rags and my brain a little squishy.  My body is hungry from a full day of hard work and it feels truly tired and ready to rest.  I appreciate the opportunities to improve myself from being faced with obstacles and struggles that are difficult to handle.  I am thankful for the “foodie” community that supports this farm and respects this lifestyle and chooses to invest in it.  

Sooo....What's in the Box???

Green or Red Cabbage-  Still plenty of large heads of green cabbage out there, but we were tempted by the beautiful heads of purple that were looking so perfect and ready for the picking.  Grandma Jane has been using up lotts of cabbage lately with her classic Egg Roll recipe.  anise_harvestHarvesting the fragrant and beautiful Anise Hyssop

Green or Purple Kohlrabi-  The final giving of kohlrabi has arrived for the spring season.  It's amazing that we had it this long!  We do have Fall successions of kohlrabi that we can look forard to in our last few boxes.  

Celery-  Another fantastic week of celery!  I'll have you know that growing organic celery in the midwest is difficult!  These little guys were started from the tiniest seeds you've ever seen way back in early March.  We have tended to them through their infancy for almost 8 weeks in the greenhouse and then transplated them and cultivated them in the field for another 8 weeks.  These guys have been with us for a while!  They're not what you're used to seeing from California, white and flavorless, but they have a midwesten character all of their own.  We noticed a real sweet flavor when chewing on stalks during harvest.  A stronger celery flavor.  Use the greens in your cooking for stocks, soups or minced into cold salads of all kinds.  One year we even dehydrated some to flavor soups in the winter time.  

Cucumbers-  Huge cucumbers!  Three per member.  I'm not sure what's gotten into our soil, but these are the biggest cucumbers we've ever seen.  We are now picking from our second succession of cucumbers.   More where these guys came from in the next few weeks.  Cucumbers prefer to be stored at 50 degrees.  Some refrigerators could be too cool for them and cause them to get a little rubbery.  Use them up in cucumber water too!  If we shorted you a cucumber, you may have received an eggplant in it's place!  

Lemon Cucumbers!-  Notice the small, round, yellow ball rolling around at the bottom of your box?  That is a lemon cucumber.  These little guys are an heirloom cucumber variety with a smooth cucumber flavor.  It will add color and texture to your favorite classic cucumber dishes.  Have fun!

Green Onions-  Sadly, this is our final giving of green onions as well!  The good news is that our white onion bulbs are up next.  You may even have received a white onion this week as we were running out of green onions toward the end of harvest.  

Summer Squash, Zucchini and Patty Pans-  About 4-5 per member.  We had a slightly cooler week last week, so sqash harvest slowed down a little.  We're expecting it to stay steady so we can continue to be generous with squash in the weeks ahead.  All summer squashes (by that I mean the yellow squash, zucchini and Patty pans) prefer 50 degree storage as well.  Remember that you can freeze squash very easily-just grate it with your cheese grater and store it in zip lock bags in the freezer.  

Anise Hyssop-  A hot item for farm worker conversation this week.  We know the honeybees love that we grow Anise Hyssop, we'll have to find out if you love that we grow it!  It is a medicinal herb that is good for respiratory issues and can be made into a simple iced tea and sweetened with your favorite sweetener or check out one of our recipe suggestions below. 

Broccoli-  We did our best to send everyone a broccoli and a cauliflower this week.  It ran a little heavier on the cauli this week, so you may have gotten two of those instead.  Broccoli loves to be kept very cold, so keep it in a plastic bag in the fridge

Cauliflower-  Another adjustment from California grown cauliflower.  Cauliflower loves cold and overcast growing conditions.  We've had sunny, dry and hot growing conditions here in late July in the Midwest.  This is what we get!  We found the flavor to be wonderful still even though it's getting hot out there to be growing cauliflower.  Use it up quick!  

Collards or Green Curly Kale-  Collards and Kale are very similar in cooking abilities and flavor.  They are both brassicas that originated as primative non-heading cabbages.  While kale is often the more popular of the two, collards are usually a more tender leaf and are less likely to become bitter in the heat.  The only difference this greens-eating girl can tell is the shape and texture between them.  If a recipe you love calls for kale, sub collards and vice versa!  

Lettuce X 2-  I am so amazed at how tender our lettuce is considering the time of year it us.  We've got one or two more weeks of lettuce givings ahead of us, and then we'll take a little break from lettuce for the late summer and resume again in the fall.  

Cilantro-  Beautiful bunches of cilantro this week.  We've got one more week of cilantro givings ahead of us still.  Cilantro makes a wonderful salad dressing (see recipe below), or even wonderful in cold cucumber salads.  

Recipes-

Cucumber Water

Cilantro-Lime Salad Dressing

Anise Hyssop Drink

Anise Hyssop Sauce

Vegetable Pad Thai with Tat Soi and Cilantro

July Sixteenth

When I was a young farm hand on a small farm here in the Driftless area, I worked on a farm one summer that raised eggs and Winter Squash for Organic Valley.  The farm family I was working for wasn’t a religious family, but their values and principles were clear.  Everyone in the family put in a hard days work on the farm and the meals that we sat down to together felt earned, intentional, and everyone in the family had worked in one way another to bring something to the table either through collecting the eggs, feeding the chickens, harvesting the vegetables or spicing the pot.  But one thing I gleaned most sincerely from this experience was how we all sat down together at the table and said a prayer before dinner. 

I was raised Catholic and we prayed all the time.  We prayed before meals daily and I went to church twice a week for the first 14 years of my life.  I learned to pray before bed and to pray when I lost something and to pray when I needed guidance.  And I’m not sure if it was those 14 years that primed me for what I felt at their farm table, as a guest in someone elses home where the word God wasn’t even mentioned at the dinner table, or if it was that the experience of eating over food that had so much meaning and significance to us was humbling to me, or maybe it was simply maturity happening to me consciously.  But I finally felt like I wanted to pray, or speak or listen or just pause before meals.  I finally felt like I understood why that was important and why for so many hundreds of years, accross so many denominations, across the globe, families pause before meals. 

We simply gave thanks.  Some nights it was brief and some nights it was thoughtful and slow, but every night it happened with intention.  We took turns announcing something small or large that we were thankful for.   We held hands and made time and it felt simple and wholesome.  Food and it’s origin and true value was becoming an increasingly meaningful part of my life.  I was also a young woman, now out on my own really earning my own way and meals in life, and this food that I was eating and the experience I was getting while eating it, was moving for me. 

Now growing and eating our own food on our own farm, our small family gives thanks before meals too.  Our daughter gives thanks for the dog some nights and we frequently give thanks for the rain or the crops or our health, but this is one small tradition that we carry on.  In a culture where our lives are so busy that we eat alone over magazines, in front of our computers and while driving in our cars, I fear that food is being forgotten.  The pause and the intention are forgotten.  Where we honor food as not merely fuel, but as an important part to our spiritual, communal and regional health.  

Sooo, What's in the Box???

Green Cabbage-  Adam said to leave all the big cabbages out in the field and just harvest the smaller cabbages because he didn't think we would be able to fit them in the box.  As box packing is finally over now, he was right, they don't 'fit' in the box, but we got them in there somehow.  Probably more cabbage coming next week as well!  Use it up!  

Purple or White Kohlrabi-  Kohlrabis are getting late in their early season.  We have enough kohlrabis out there to give one more week, but we'll see how they hold up out there.  

Celery-  Yes, that is celery in your box!  As vegetable farmers, we're very excited about this.  Local celery is hard to grow!  It has a darker green color, a stronger celery flavor, and has more leaves and bit more firm stems.  The only thing we all have to compare it to is California grown celery that is color-less, pumped full of water, and very difficult to replicate in the midwest.  We ask you to try and learn to appreciate this local celery for it's uniqueness.  Use it's greens in your soups like you would parsley, finely chop it into a tuna or egg salad, or just get creative and toss it with your other veggie salads or wherever you might use celery in your cooking.  More celery coming the next few weeks!  Enjoy!  

Summer Squash, Zucchini, Patty Pans-  I worked on an apple farm in Gays Mills back in my farm-hand days.  There was a man named Bob who moved the apple bins for us and managed the pickers.  When the apple glut would come in, he would always say "We're in the Grrrravy now".  This is the gravy of the Summer Squash, Zucchini and Patty Pan days.  Know that you can also grate it and freeze it in freezer bags.  Squashes are great to have in the winter monthes for zucchini bread, lasagnas, or egg bake dishes.  

Cucumbers-  Production is picking up now finally!

Red Beets-  The beets are still very young and tender and the leaves look beautiful for eating.  Beet greens can be used in cooking like your Swiss Chard.  To store your beets, remove their tops and keep them in a plastic bag in the fridge.  

Broccoli or Cauliflower-  The broccoli and cauliflower are holding up nicely in the field with all of this cooler weather.  We still have a couple more weeks of summer broccoli successions coming on.  Broccoli and cauliflower need to be kept very cold in the summer montes to keep it fresh.  If it sits out for too long, it will turn yellow quickly.  We recommend using it up first.  

Garlic Scapes-  Sadly, this is the final week of garlic scapes.  The scapes have all been picked and bunched and distributed.  Use them like you would use fresh garlic.  This also means that fresh garlic isn't far from apprearing in your CSA boxes!@  

Parsley-  Either flat leaf or curly leaf parsley this week.  This is another herb that is very easy to dry in your dehydrator if you don't think you'll get to using it all this week.  Tabouli is a fun and healthy recipe that calls for a lot of parsley.  

Green Leaf, Romain and/or Red Leaf Lettuce X2-  Two more beautiful heads of lettuce this week to keep you rockin' in the lettuce world.  Lettuce keeps best if stored in a plastic bag in the fridge.  More lettuce coming the next few weeks, then we may be taking a short break from lettuce.  

Green Onions-  Yes, more green oninos!  Green onions can be used from their roots all the way up to the tips of their greens.  I've seen asian cooking recipes that use the green onion roots in soup like noodles.  

Swiss Chard-  Absolutely perfect swiss chard this week.  Very minimal bug or disease damage.  This is the way swiss Chard is supposed to look!  Keep up your greens consumption!  

Recipes-

Zucchini Lasagna

No-Noodle Zucchini Lasagna

Fennel Cucumber Salsa-  In case you still have a fennel in your fridge.  One local member contributed this recipe and says she's in love with it!  

Beet Burgers

Quiche with Beet Greens (or Swiss Chard Greens)