CSA Newsletter Week #9, July 20th

Farm Notes

Friends, it has been hot and humid out here! But just because it’s hot, doesn’t mean we stop. We are right around the peak of the season. There are lots of root crops to get out of the field, hopefully before any rain comes. If you don’t follow us on Instagram, you’ve been missing out on all of our pretty carrot pictures!

More carrots! Rainbow variety for the share tomorrow!

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Don’t forget, You-Pick hours are available THIS Saturday, July 22nd from 9-11am. There are plenty of flowers, herbs, green beans and cherry tomatoes just waiting for you and your family!

Emails went out earlier this week regarding tomato and cabbage boxes. Make sure you email us at uk.csa@ uky.edu to reserve yours. We will start a list of reservations and work our way through it as boxes become available.

Onions!

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Farm Stand

The CSA Farm Stand (which is for purchasing “extras”) will be set up at both the campus (from 4-6pm) and farm (from 3:30-6:30pm) locations. Items available will be on a first come, first served basis. For the campus location, we will be set up a little differently this year. The Farm Stand will be located all the way to the right of the pick-up line with it’s own tent and table. So please do not go through the regular pick-up line to buy a la carte. At the farm, the Farm Stand table will also be set up separately from the regular pick-up line. We accept cash or check only please.

Items Available for Purchase this Week:
+ Rainbow Carrots
+ Summer Squash
+ Cucumbers
+ Peppers
+ Tomatoes
+ Sweet Corn
+ Garlic
+ Watermelon

First potato harvest of the year!

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Note from an Apprentice

This week’s note is from Alex Ball.

Hello everyone, my name is Alexandra Ball and I am a junior majoring in Sustainable Agriculture. Despite my desire to own my own farm and to grow vegetables crops, I did not grow up farming. My upbringing was in mostly urban areas, yet my parents found it imperative during my childhood to emphasize the crucial role of nutrition and that I appreciate where my food came from. This translated later into a deep desire to grow the healthy food I valued, and by middle school I began helping out on various farms.

When reflecting on my summer as an apprentice at South Farm, what has come to mind most is not one particular day, task, or class- but rather the collective experience. Each day has been a valuable lesson, whether I realized it in that moment or not. It can be easy to see a long day’s work through the narrowed lens of just performing tasks as efficiently as possible to bring the best quality to each CSA member. When summer days require hours of weeding carrots, or harvesting squash and zucchini three times a week, I admit I find it easy to lose sight of the importance of each and every one of those tasks. The reality is, however, in farming everything has an intricate connection that must be recognized and valued. From each plant taking root in the ground, to the complex composition of the soil, to the equipment and labor. Every component plays its own part in the art of farming.

And it most definitely is an art. In the words of Wendell Berry, a good farmer is “a craftsman of the highest order, a kind of artist”. I truly believe that is one of the greatest reminders I have been given through this experience. To grow and provide each crop, one can painstakingly go by step by step through every textbook, manual, or method claimed to be the most optimal. However, unsurprisingly, the guidelines for seeding, transplant, and maintenance of a given plant are not foolproof.

Take the tomato for example. This crop can be a challenge for any grower. Structures such as t-posts must be installed over numerous hours, as well as layers of twine to support the rapidly growing plants. Pest pressures and annuals diseases are often high. And the health of the crop all balances delicately on what  mother nature will bring that season. This is where a crucial characteristic of a good farmer comes into play. The farmer not only has to be prepared for any challenge that may come, but also must be ready to problem solve or maybe try a unique approach, so that a harvest will still take place in the weeks to come. It is anything but an exact science, and many times successful seasons are the result of skills, preparation, and also the willingness to experiment.

But despite the fact that farming proves always to be challenging, the art produced as a result (yes I am comparing the produce in a share to art) is beyond valuable. It can be shared and appreciated by others. It can be transformed into meals, become the topic of conversation, and also a powerful connection between community members.

Surprise! Tomatoes for CSA week 8.

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What’s In Your Share

For this week, you’ll receive:
+ Rainbow Carrots
+ Summer Squash
+ Cucumbers
+ Shishito Peppers
+ Banana Peppers
+ Mixed Sweet Peppers
+ Tomatoes
+ Sweet Corn
+ Garlic
+ Watermelon

This week's class focused on bees.

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You-Pick
Please review You-Pick guidelines under Member Information.

Items available for you-pick:
+ Flowers: There are several flowers blooming, but please be mindful of the plants as they are still growing and if they get cut too short, they won’t grow back again.
+ Herbs: As with the flowers, there are herbs out there, but again, be mindful that you do not cut whole plants down as they are still growing.
+ Hot Peppers: There are lots of hot peppers! The numbers on the signs that name the variety are on a heat scale of 1 to 5. The 1 indicates mild peppers while 5 is the hottest of the hot (e.g. habanero).
+ Okra
+ Cherry Tomatoes are JUST starting to come on… there are a few varieties available for picking. For your convenience, there is a cut-through in the middle of the bed between the T-posts so you can get around more easily.
+ Green Beans
+ This year we have started a perennial herb bed. It is located next to the road leading out the back gate. The perennial herbs are on the black landscape fabric. Most everything is already in the regular you-pick field, but there are a few plants such as spearmint! and a couple of flowers that are not in the regular field.

Please be advised that there is a bed of brussels sprouts on the opposite side of the cherry tomatoes that is NOT for you-pick. Only beds that have a you-pick sign are open for picking, but please ask a farm staff member if you have any questions at all.

Veggie Tips (or Facts)

+ Corn is best stored with the husks on in the refrigerator. Use it within the first couple of days for the best quality. The corn looks beautiful, but if you do happen to see a friend or two in the ears, don’t panic – it’s organic! Hopefully there won’t be any friends in the corn, but if there is, they are super easy to just pick out before cooking. We tried very hard to only give you nice ears, but if there is a bit of a mushy spot, you can just cut that part off.  You may find in your corn:

Sap Beetles

And especially hopefully not:

Corn earworm

Or:

+ Watermelon can be either stored on the counter or in the refrigerator. If you are worried about the smell of melon getting on other things in your fridge, you can wrap the melon in wax paper or in a plastic bag to reduce the aroma. Watermelons will last 2-3 weeks, but cut melons will keep several days, covered and stored in the refrigerator. Although we run the melons through a washer, you may want to re-wash the melon before eating.
+ The garlic has now been cured for a sufficient time and can be left out on the counter. You do not have to refrigerate it.

Sugar baby watermelon harvest! It's summertime now.

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Recipes

For your convenience this week’s recipes in a printable format.

Meal Plan Menu

Thursday:

If you don’t already have plans on how you’re fixing your sweet corn. Either try boiling it or grilling it.

Boiling:
Bring a large pot to boil. Add corn, cover it and boil about 10 minutes or so. Then add whatever toppings you like (salt, pepper and butter!)

Grilling:
Set the grill to high heat. Peel back the husks on the corn and pull the silks off. Add butter and seasonings to each ear and then cover again with the husk. Wrap the ears in foil and place on grill, cooking for 30 minutes or so, turning occasionally.

 

Friday:

Friday night pizza and movie night. You can add any veggies you want as toppings. Add peppers or you can even do fresh tomato slices or chunks instead of a tomato sauce. Get creative!

Friday Night Pizza
from Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver
Makes 2 12-inch pizzas

Ingredients:
3 tsp. yeast
1 1/2 cups WARM water
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. salt
2 1/2 cups white flour
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup sliced onions
2 peppers, cut up
16 oz. mozzarella, thinly sliced
2 cups fresh tomatoes in season or sauce
other toppings such as spinach, chopped
1 tbsp. oregano
1 tsp. rosemary
olive oil

Directions:
To make crust, dissolve the yeast into the warm water and add oil and salt to that mixture. Mix the flours and knead them into the liquid mixture. Let the dough rise for 30-40 minutes.

While the dough is rising, prepare the sliced onions: a slow sauté to caramelize their sugars makes fresh onions into an amazing vegetable. First sizzle them on medium heat in a little olive oil, until transparent but not browned. Then turn down the burner, add a bit of water if necessary to keep them from browning, and let them cook 10-15 minutes more until they are glossy and sweet. Peppers can benefit from a similar treatment.

Once the dough has risen, divide it in half and roll out 2 round 12-inch pizza crusts on a clean, floured countertop, using your fingers to roll the perimeter into an outer crust as thick as you like. Using spatulas, slide the crusts onto well-floured pans or baking stones and spread toppings. Layer the cheese evenly over the crust, then scatter the toppings of the week on your pizza, finishing with the spices. If you use tomato sauce, spread that over the crust first, then cheese, then other toppings. Bake pizzas at 425F for about 20 minutes, until crust is browned on the edge and crisp in the center.

Saturday:

This is something you should prep the night before or morning of.

Savannah’s Crock Pot Beans

Choose whatever beans you like best. (Pinto beans are good). Depending on how many servings you need, put the dry beans in a crock pot and cover with water. Turn on low and cook until tender. (overnight works well or all day). Do not season with salt (if needed) until after beans are cooked.

Pair crock pot beans with other sauteed veggies (like summer squash and carrots). Add rice if you want or make tacos or nachos. You can even cook up some eggs to go with it. Delicious!

Sunday:

These rainbow carrots are too pretty not to show off. Pair this recipe below with a protein of your choice.

Roman Buttered Carrots
From A Feast of Ice and Fire by Chelsea Monroe-Cassel and Sariann Lehrer

Ingredients:
2 cups chopped carrots
1/2 cup raisins
2-3 tbsp. honey
2 tbsp. wine vinegar
2 tsp. cumin
ground black pepper to taste
2 tbsp. melted unsalted butter
2 tbsp. sweet wine, red or white

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 400F. Cut the carrots into disks or chunks. Put them in a pot of water and bring it to a boil, then drain them immediately and place them in an ovenproof dish. Add the raisins, honey, vinegar, cumin and pepper. Drizzle the butter over the top, then shake well to coat the carrots, and roast until they are tender. Add the wine to deglaze the sticky pan and dislodge the carrots, then pour the whole contents of the pan into a serving dish. Serve warm. Serves 2-4.

Monday:

If you haven’t already gotten into your watermelon, try this refreshing salad below. And don’t throw out the seeds…you can roast them and eat them later!

Watermelon and Tomato Salad

From NY Times

Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups seedless watermelon, in 1-inch cubes or
balls (cut over a bowl to catch the juice and
reserve it)
1 1/2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
1/2 cup finely diced or crumbled Stilton, Gorgonzola,
Roquefort or Maytag blue cheese
1/2 cup minced scallions
Salt
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
Pinch cayenne
1/2 cup parsley, roughly chopped

Directions:
1. Combine the watermelon, tomato, cheese, scallions and salt in a bowl.

2. Whisk or blend together about 2 tablespoons of the watermelon juice, oil, vinegar and cayenne. To serve, dress the salad with this mixture and garnish with parsley. Do not refrigerate and serve within 30 minutes.

+++

Roasted Watermelon Seeds

Ingredients:
1 cup raw watermelon seeds, rinsed and dried
Olive Oil
Sea Salt

Directions:
Preheat oven to 325 F.

Toss seeds with a little olive oil and sea salt. Spread on baking sheet and roast in oven for 10-15 minutes.

Tuesday:

Spiced Raita

From Farmer John’s Cookbook

“Traditionally used as a cooling complement to spicy Indian foods, raita also makes a refreshing dip or sauce for raw or cooked vegetables” (think zucchini and summer squash)

Ingredients:
3 medium cucumbers, peeled, seeds removed coarsely grated
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp coriander seeds
2 cups plain yogurt
1 medium tomato, halved, stem and seeds
removed, cut into thin strips
1 green chile pepper, stem, seeds, and membranes
removed, thinly sliced (optional)
1/2 cup finely chopped scallions
1/8 tsp ground white pepper
1 Tbs finely chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:
1. Place a large strainer over a bowl or a pot. Put the grated cucumber in the strainer; set aside to drain for 30 min.
2. Place a dry, heavy skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium heat. Add the cumin and coriander seeds and stir constantly until toasted and fragrant, 3-5 minutes, watching carefully to avoid burning them. Immediately transfer seeds to a mortar and pestle and grind (or use the back of a wooden spoon to crush).
3. Pour the yogurt into a strainer lined with several layers of cheesecloth or a coffee filter. Set it aside for 10 minutes to drain.
4. Remove the drained, grated cucumber from the strainer with your hands and gently squeeze out the excess moisture. Spread the grated cucumber on clean dish towels and pat dry.
5. In a medium bowl, gently combine the cucumber, crushed cumin and coriander seeds, yogurt, tomato, chile pepper, scallions, and white pepper. Garnish with cilantro Serve immediately or refrigerate for 1 hour.

Wednesday:

Clean out the fridge and prepare for more awesome veggies coming Thursday!

Saturday You Pick Schedule… and Preview Week 9

As our You-Pick field is taking off, we will host two Saturday You-Pick times for those of you that find it more difficult to make it out to the farm during the weekdays. Mark your calendars for the following You Pick times:

THIS Saturday July 22nd from 9am – 11am
Saturday August 19th from 9am – 11am

A staff member will be on site to orient you to our fields.

Our You-Pick is always open Monday – Friday from 7:30am to 4pm with extended hours until 6:30pm on our distribution Thursdays. Bring pruners, scissors, and containers for any you-pick items.

Here is the preview for CSA shares week 9:
+ Patty Pan Squash
+ Tomatoes
+ Sweet Corn
+ Banana Peppers
+ Shishito Peppers
+ Cucumbers
+ Carrots

CSA Newsletter Week #8, July 13th

Farm Notes

We are really into the crunch time here at the farm. The summer veggies are continuing to roll in and a lot of root crops are ready to be harvested. We need all hands on deck! Luckily, we’ve had some big crews helping out and we are getting it done. Among harvesting, we still have a lot of field prep to do for…can you believe it?….fall crops! We’ve already got some fall brassicas seeded in the green house and they will be ready to go in the ground in just a few short weeks.

Dr. Krista Jacobsen gets her carrot harvest on with our CSA crew!

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Farm Stand

The CSA Farm Stand (which is for purchasing “extras”) will be set up at both the campus (from 4-6pm) and farm (from 3:30-6:30pm) locations. Items available will be on a first come, first served basis. For the campus location, we will be set up a little differently this year. The Farm Stand will be located all the way to the right of the pick-up line with it’s own tent and table. So please do not go through the regular pick-up line to buy a la carte. At the farm, the Farm Stand table will also be set up separately from the regular pick-up line. We accept cash or check only please.

Items Available for Purchase this Week:
+ Savoy Cabbage
+ Summer Squash
+ Cucumbers
+ Green Onions
+ Green Beans
+ Cilantro/Dill
+ Cauliflower
+ Tomatoes
+ Peppers
+ Eggplant

Getting our haygroves covered at last!

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What’s In Your Share

For this week, you’ll receive:
+ Savoy Cabbage
+ Summer Squash (including some new heirloom types!)
+ Cucumbers
+ Green Onions
+ Green Beans
+ Cilantro OR Dill
+ Cauliflower
+ Peppers
+ Tomatoes

Alien squash, aka patty pan squash coming to your share this week!

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You-Pick
Please review You-Pick guidelines under Member Information.

Items available for you-pick:
+ Flowers: There are several flowers blooming, but please be mindful of the plants as they are still growing and if they get cut too short, they won’t grow back again.
+ Herbs: As with the flowers, there are herbs out there, but again, be mindful that you do not cut whole plants down as they are still growing.
+ Hot Peppers: There are lots of hot peppers! The numbers on the signs that name the variety are on a heat scale of 1 to 5. The 1 indicates mild peppers while 5 is the hottest of the hot (e.g. habanero).
+ Okra
+ Cherry Tomatoes are JUST starting to come on… there are a few varieties available for picking. For your convenience, there is a cut-through in the middle of the bed between the T-posts so you can get around more easily.
+ *NEW* Green Beans
+ *NEW* This year we have started a perennial herb bed. It is located next to the road leading out the back gate. The perennial herbs are on the black landscape fabric. Most everything is already in the regular you-pick field, but there are a few plants such as spearmint! and a couple of flowers that are not in the regular field.

Please be advised that there is a bed of brussels sprouts on the opposite side of the cherry tomatoes that is NOT for you-pick. Only beds that have a you-pick sign are open for picking, but please ask a farm staff member if you have any questions at all.

Veggie Tips (or Facts)
+ Green Beans have not been pre-washed. Although they are pretty decently clean and sorted, you may want to wash and pull off any stems. Green beans store best in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer. They generally stay fresh for 3-5 days.
+ Savoy cabbage will store for a while if you still have cabbage left from previous weeks. Just store it in a bag in the crisper drawer.
+ Trouble with wilty herbs after just a couple of days? Try filling a cup or jar of water partially full and place the herbs in the jar. Then place a bag over top of the herbs and stick in the refrigerator. This should help make the herbs last a little bit longer – for up to a couple of weeks!

Recipes

For your convenience this week’s recipes in a printable format.

Meal Plan Menu

Thursday: 

With these hot and humid days, a fresh, cool salad is perfect! Try this cabbage salad below; it includes a lot of the items you are getting in your share this week or leftover from last.

Thai Summer Salad with Chinese Cabbage

Ingredients:
SALAD
3 cups torn napa or savoy (Chinese) cabbage
1/2 cup (1/8-inch) julienne-cut yellow squash
1/2 cup (1/8-inch) julienne-cut zucchini
1/2 cup (1/8-inch) julienne-cut red bell pepper
1/2 cup (1/8-inch) julienne-cut yellow bell pepper
1/2 cup (1/8-inch) julienne-cut seeded peeled cucumber
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/4 cup grated radishes
1 minced seeded jalapeno pepper

DRESSING
3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1 Tablespoon fish sauce
1 Tablespoon water
1 1/2 teaspoons granulated white sugar
1/2 teaspoon chile- garlic paste

Directions:
1. To prepare the salad, combine the salad ingredients in a large bowl.
2. To prepare the dressing, combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together until sugar dissolves.
3. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss well. Serve immediately.

Friday:

Pick a protein and caramelize some green beans as a side.

Caramelized Green Beans

Ingredients:
6 T (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
1 lb. green beans, trimmed
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:
1. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add green beans and season lightly with salt and pepper to taste.

2. Cook beans, turning often with tongs, until they are caramelized, about 45 minutes. Taste and season, if necessary, with salt and pepper.

3. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beans to a serving platter. Pour the butter and pan juices over the beans and serve promptly.

Saturday:

If you are up for it and still have a lot of squash to get through, try pickling it to save for the winter months when you are craving some summer time vegetables. Otherwise, my favorite thing to do is slice up the squash and cook it in a pan over medium heat with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Garlic and onions are always a nice touch.

Pickled Squash

Submitted by a CSA member from the Food Network

Ingredients:
10 cups sliced squash, such as zucchini and yellow summer squash
2 cups sliced onions
Kosher salt, for sprinkling vegetables
2 cups white vinegar
3 cups sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons pickling spice
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper, optional

Directions:
In a large pot or bowl, layer sliced squash and sliced onions, and sprinkle each layer generously with kosher salt and let sit for 1 hour. Drain well.

In a large non-reactive pot, combine vinegar, sugar, pickling spice, and crushed red pepper and bring to a boil. Add squash and onions and return to a boil.

Divide vegetables between sterilized jars and ladle enough pickling liquid over vegetables to come within 1/2 inch from top of jar. Wipe rims of jars clean, cover with lids and screw tops in place.
Process jars in a hot water bath for 10 minutes. Remove jars from water bath and cool. Jars should seal as they cool. Any jars that do not seal should be refrigerated and consumed within 2 weeks.

Sunday:

Ever tried a cucumber soup before? Check out these two chilled cucumber soups below.

Chilled Cucumber-Mint Soup with yogurt or sour cream

From Farmer John’s Cookbook

Ingredients:
4-6 cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped (About 4 cups)
1-2 cups water
2 cups plain yogurt (or 1 cup plain yogurt combined with 1 cup sour cream)
1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
Several mint leaves (you-pick perennial herb beds)
2 Tablespoons fresh dill or 1 tsp dried
1 Tablespoon honey
1-2 teaspoons salt
2 scallions, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)

Directions:
1. Combine the chopped cucumber, 1 cup water, yogurt, garlic, mint, dill, honey and 1 teaspoon salt in a blender or food processor. Purée the ingredients, adding more of the water until the soup is a consistency you like. Season with more salt to taste.
2. Transfer the soup to a large bowl and chill for several hours. Garnish each serving with chopped scallions.

Chilled Cucumber Soup with Dill

Ingredients:
5 cucumbers
1/2 cup chopped parsley
6 scallions, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 quart buttermilk
1 pint yogurt
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Directions:
Peel cucumbers and cut them in half, scraping out seeds. Sprinkle the cucumbers with salt and let them stand 30 minutes. Drain excess water.

Chop the cucumbers coarsely and put the pieces in the blender along with scallions, dill, lemon juice, buttermilk, and yogurt. Blend at high speed. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Chill well before serving.

Monday:

Pair with a protein of your choice to make it a more complete meal.

Parmesan Cauliflower Tater Tots

From Eating Well magazine

Ingredients:
1 medium head cauliflower (about 2 lbs), trimmed and broken into small florets
5 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp salt
2 large egg whites, whisked until frothy
3/4 cup coarse dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs (panko)
Canola or olive oil cooking spray

Directions:
1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add cauliflower and boil until tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Drain in a colander, shaking to remove excess water. Return the cauliflower to the pot and dry over medium-low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Using a potato masher, mash the cauliflower until it resembles clumpy rice. Transfer to a large bowl to cool, stirring occasionally.

2. Stir flour and cheese into the cooled cauliflower. Season with pepper and salt. Stir in egg whites. Line an 8 inch square baking dish with plastic wrap, allowing the wrap to hang over the edges. Spread the cauliflower mixture into the pan, compacting it into an even layer. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the freezer until very cold, 1 to 2 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 400 F. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.

4. Spread breadcrumbs on a plate. Gently turn the cauliflower mixture out onto a cutting board, removing the plastic wrap. Cut it into 36 evenly sized pieces. Roll the pieces in the breadcrumbs, turning to coat all sides. Place on the baking sheet, about 1 inch apart.

5. Coat the tots with cooking spray. Bake, turning once halfway through, until browned, 35 to 45 minutes.

Serves 6, 6 tots each.

Tuesday:

Not everyone has been getting eggplant at the same time as there just hasn’t been enough for both farm and campus, which means there often has not been a recipe for it included in the week. But here is an eggplant recipe to try if you get an eggplant or for the next time you have them.

Baked Stuffed Eggplant

From Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse Vegetables

Use small and pretty eggplants. Cut them in half and scoop out about half the pulp. Make a stuffing by chopping the pulp and combining it with pitted black olives, chopped garlic, salt-packed anchovy fillets, capers, parsley, and marjoram. Mix in bread crumbs soaked in milk and squeezed dry. Mound the stuffing in the eggplants and put them in an earthenware gratin dish, drizzle generously with olive oil, and bake, loosely covered, in a preheated 350° oven for an hour.

Optional stuffings can include: rice, ground beef or sausage and other chopped up vegetables. Don’t feel limited by what the recipe calls for. Add or switch it up however you like.

Wednesday:

As a side dish to your entree, try grilling the green onions. Heck, while you’re at it, just throw whatever other veggies you have left on the grill too!

Grilled Green Onions

From food.com

Ingredients:
1 bunch green onion
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons butter

Directions:
1. Wash the onions thoroughly.
2. Place whole onions on a sheet of foil.
3. Place the butter over the onions.
4. Sprinkle with garlic salt and pepper.
5. Fold the foil over the onions and seal the edges so the butter steams the onions.
6. Place on a hot grill until warmed through, about 10 minutes.
7. Be careful when opening, the steam will be hot.

CSA Newsletter Week #7, July 6th

Farm Notes

We hope your family had a very nice 4th of July holiday. With a shorter week for our staff, we’ve been in a busy harvest mode. The rain on Tuesday has kept us from other field work but we see the results of the rain already: crops surging in growth, beans sprouting, and lots of mud to cake on our boots…

Pretty little beans all in a row…!

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Well we don’t mind the mud, but the humidity is another story! This humid week we’ve been harvesting our summer squash. Believe it or not, the zucchini is slowing down in its growth. Did you know that a zucchini can add an inch or more of growth PER DAY? Incredible! So we have to harvest it 3 times a week to stay on top of it. This is why there is always a diverse selection of squash sizes at pick up. Whether you like larger ones for baking or smaller ones for sauteeing, just ask us if you don’t see a size you like in our bins.

We have really enjoyed seeing our members share photos on Instagram of their farm fresh food. Be sure to tag us @ukcsa or link us on Facebook! We’d love to repost your meal ideas. Do you have a good recipe you could share too? Send it our way to: uk.csa@uky.edu. We take all your feedback and ideas and put them into practice or pass them along to others.

Farm Stand

The CSA Farm Stand (which is for purchasing “extras”) will be set up at both the campus (from 4-6pm) and farm (from 3:30-6:30pm) locations. Items available will be on a first come, first served basis. For the campus location, we will be set up a little differently this year. The Farm Stand will be located all the way to the right of the pick-up line with it’s own tent and table. So please do not go through the regular pick-up line to buy a la carte. At the farm, the Farm Stand table will also be set up separately from the regular pick-up line. We accept cash or check only please.

Items Available for Purchase this Week:
+ Summer Squash and Zucchini
+ Cucumbers
+ Broccoli
+ Swiss Chard
+ Tomatoes
+ Beets
+ Turnips
+ Carrots

What’s In Your Share

For this week, you’ll receive:
+ Yellow Squash
+ Zucchini
+ Cucumbers
+ Swiss Chard
+ Fresh Garlic
+ Carrots
+ Broccoli
+ Easter Egg Radishes
+ Beets (mixed varieties)
+ Turnips

First carrot harvest!

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You-Pick
Please review You-Pick guidelines under Member Information.

Items available for you-pick:
+ Flowers: There are several flowers blooming, but please be mindful of the plants as they are still growing and if they get cut too short, they won’t grow back again.
+ Herbs: As with the flowers, there are herbs out there, but again, be mindful that you do not cut whole plants down as they are still growing.
+ Hot Peppers: There are lots of hot peppers! The numbers on the signs that name the variety are on a heat scale of 1 to 5. The 1 indicates mild peppers while 5 is the hottest of the hot (e.g. habanero).
+ Okra
+ Cherry Tomatoes are JUST starting to come on… there are a few varieties available for picking. For your convenience, there is a cut-through in the middle of the bed between the T-posts so you can get around more easily.

Please be advised that there is a bed of brussels sprouts on the opposite side of the cherry tomatoes that is NOT for you-pick. Only beds that have a you-pick sign are open for picking, but please ask a farm staff member if you have any questions at all. FYI, the kale is no longer on you-pick… no more kale until fall!

Lots of flowers in our you-pick fields! You can almost disappear into them…

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Veggie Tips (or Facts)

+ Carrots are coming with their greens attached. The greens are edible and popularly used when making vegetable broth. To keep the carrots crisp, trim off the greens if you aren’t going to use them or if you want to save the greens for broth making later.
+ This may be the last week on broccoli until fall… If you still have some in your fridge, this is a great time to blanche and freeze whole heads for summer eating.
+ The Garlic is fresh garlic and only partially cured. The reason we are giving it out now is because these garlics are “seconds” and may be partially open or have a clove that has rotted. However we still think there is plenty of good garlic cloves in each head to enjoy. In light of this, the heads would be best refrigerated until used, and use them up more quickly than fully cured garlic (which is often kept at room temperature). You can expect the garlic flavor to be even more pungent (and delicious)!
+ You don’t need to peel the Beets and Turnips however many folks prefer to do so as the turnips can have tough skin and the beets taste a bit earthy with their skin. An easy way to peel beets is roast them first, skin on and everything. Once they are roasted for about 30-45 minutes, you can actually slip the skin off the beets with your hands. Don’t want your hands to turn pink with beet juice? Use a paper towel to rub off the skin. It’s like magic!

We had our first onions harvested this week! Yipee! Just a few weeks to cure in our greenhouse and then we’ll be sending them out in the shares.

Recipes and Meal Plan Menu

Thursday:

Choose your own Chard adventure:
Chard Frico with protein of choice OR chard burrito wraps with chopped veggies and rice inside. Any leftover green onions from last week? Great idea to throw those in there! Add carrot, radish, cucumber… Here’s one take on this.

Also: get some refrigerator pickles started for the weekend! Try Mark Bittman’s Kosher Pickles.

Friday:
Fish Tacos with Cucumber-Radish Slaw from Great Food Fast.

Recipe for slaw, below, which serves 4.

Ingredients:
2 Cucumbers
4-6 Radishes
Coarse salt and fresh ground pepper
2 Tbsp minced red onion
3 Tbsp cider vinegar
3 tsp olive oil
1 tsp sugar

Directions:
1. Peel the cucumbers. Halve lengthwise and scrape out any seeds. Slice very thin on the diagonal.
2. Thinly slice enough radishes to equal 1 cup. In a large colander, toss the vegetables with 1/2 tsp salt. Top with a plate that fits inside the colander and weight with heavy object in order to drain. Drain in sink for 20 minutes, and then squeeze the vegetables in paper towels to dry.
3. Transfer to a bowl and toss with the onion, vinegar, olive oil, and sugar. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.

Saturday:
Still have some leftover proteins and buns from 4th of July cooking out? How about round 2 of grilling. A great side would be one of my favorite fresh raw slaws. Prep with a food processor for ease, but you can also use a four-sided box grater. Then be sure to bring out those refrigerator pickles!

Shredded Beet and Carrot Salad from Martha Stewart’s Great Food Fast.
Serves 6

Ingredients:
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp honey
3/4 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 to 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Coarse salt
1 pound raw beets, peeled
2 carrots, peeled
1/3 cup coarsely torn fresh parsley (available in our you-pick field!)

Directions:
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, oil, honey, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cayenne, and 3/4 tsp salt.

2. In a food processor fitted with the shredding disk, shred the peeled beets and then the peeled carrots. Add to the bowl along with the parsley, and toss all of the ingredients to combine.

Sunday:

Veggie Fritter food inspiration here and here featuring the Kentucky Proud Kitchen and SAG alum Paul Dengel. There are endless variations of which vegetable assortment, but summer squash, carrot, and garlic will be a great base. Any kohlrabi still lurking in your fridge? Another apt fritter ingredient.

Ingredients:
2 cups shredded zucchini
2 cups shredded carrots
2 cloves garlic, minced
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup sliced scallions (green and white parts)
2 Tablespoons olive oil
Sour cream or yogurt for topping

Directions:

1. Place the shredded zucchini in a colander and sprinkle it lightly with salt. Let the zucchini sit for 10 minutes then using your hands, squeeze out as much liquid as possible.

2. Transfer the zucchini to a large bowl then add the carrots, garlic, flour, eggs, scallions, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Stir the mixture until it is combined.

3. Line a plate with paper towels. Place a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and add the olive oil. Once the oil is shimmering, scoop 3-tablespoon mounds of the vegetable mixture into the pan, flattening the mounds slightly and spacing them at least 1 inch apart.

4. Cook the fritters for 2 to 3 minutes then flip them once and continue cooking them an additional 1 to 2 minutes until they’re golden brown and crispy. Transfer the fritters to the paper towel-lined plate, season them with salt and repeat the cooking process with the remaining mixture.

5. Serve the fritters immediately topped with sour cream or yogurt.

Monday:

Roasted Veggies over rice or quinoa. Good options include: diced and peeled beets, diced turnips, chopped broccoli, minced garlic. Take prepped veggies and drizzle with olive oil in a 9×13 glass pyrex dish and stir to coat evenly. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook in pre-heated oven at 400-450 degrees for 30 minutes. Stir and sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese (optional). Cook another 5-10 minutes or until veggies have reached sufficient doneness. Combine with rice or quinoa prepared as package directs.

Tuesday:

Revisit Stuffed Zucchini and Yellow Squash “Boats” from Week 3.

Wednesday:

Leftovers…clean out the fridge for Thursday’s veggies!

Preview Week #7

We have a short week because of the 4th of July holiday on Tuesday, so it is a busy day at the farm. Just because we have a holiday doesn’t mean our plants stop growing! We still have to keep them watered, weeded, and harvested.

This week we hope to deliver these yummy veggies for your share:

+ Yellow Squash and Zucchini
+ Cucumbers
+ Carrots (!!!)
+ Fresh Garlic
+ Radish
+ Beets
+ Turnips
+ Broccoli

Green onion harvesting!

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Picture from last week’s green onion harvest… more green onions coming in a week or so!

CSA Newsletter Week #6, June 29th

Farm Notes

We have had some great weather this week. Perfect for weeding, harvesting (garlic!) and prepping beds for direct seeding and transplanting fall crops. Everything is coming along nicely and the summer staples are about to really kick in. Be prepared for lots more summer squash, cucumbers, eggplant, peppers and tomatoes coming your way in the next few weeks!

Garlic harvest! Coming soon to your CSA shares…

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Farm Stand

The CSA Farm Stand (which is for purchasing “extras”) will be set up at both the campus (from 4-6pm) and farm (from 3:30-6:30pm) locations. Items available will be on a first come, first served basis. For the campus location, we will be set up a little differently this year. The Farm Stand will be located all the way to the right of the pick-up line with it’s own tent and table. So please do not go through the regular pick-up line to buy a la carte. At the farm, the Farm Stand table will also be set up separately from the regular pick-up line. We accept cash or check only please.

Items Available for Purchase this Week:
+ Summer Squash
+ Cucumbers
+ Green Cabbage
+ Green Onions
+ Banana Peppers
+ Broccoli
+ Kale
+ Tomatoes
+ Basil

What’s In Your Share

For this week, you’ll receive:
+ Yellow Squash
+ Zucchini
+ Cucumbers
+ Green Cabbage
+ Green Onions
+ Banana Pepper
+ Broccoli
+ Cauliflower
+ Eggplant (Campus only since Farm got it last week)
+ Kale
+ Basil

The buckwheat is doing its thing…attracting pollinators!

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You-Pick

The You-Pick field is now open! Before you start picking, here are a couple of ground rules:
+ We ask that you bring your own scissors or pruners and your own bag/box/bin.
+ You-Pick is open whenever the farm is open which is Monday-Friday, 7:30 am to 4pm, with the exception of Thursdays, when it is open until 6:30pm.
+ Please park in the parking lot. We ask that you do not drive your vehicle on the grass in the fields.
+ There will be signs that say “you-pick”. Please only pick from the beds that have signs. This year’s field is the very first field on the north side (fields closest to the parking lot). If you have questions about anything or where the field is, please find a staff person and we will gladly help you!

Items available for you-pick:
+ Kale
The field with the kale in it is the 5th field on the south side (the row of fields closest to the fence and Waveland Rd.) The beds you can pick kale from will be marked with a wooden “You-Pick” sign. This is the last week for you-pick kale!
+ Flowers: There are several flowers blooming, but please be mindful of the plants as they are still growing and if they get cut too short, they won’t grow back again.
+ Herbs: As with the flowers, there are herbs out there, but again, be mindful that you do not cut whole plants down as they are still growing.
+ Hot Peppers: There are lots of hot peppers!
+ Okra

We will have signs posted, but please ask a farm staff member if you have any questions at all. FYI, the peas are done for the year and are no longer on you-pick.

Veggie Tips (or Facts)

+ Summer squash is stored best in plastic bags in the crisper drawer of the fridge for about a week. See the preservation section below for some tips on freezing and saving summer squash.
+  Store unwashed greens (kale) in moist paper towels and place in sealed plastic bags in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator. They will keep about three to four days.
+  Don’t be overwhelmed with your cabbage! Green Cabbage will last for several weeks in the fridge. Store in a plastic bag or wrap in plastic and put in the fridge.
+ Cucumbers can either be stored in a cool spot (55F) in the kitchen or in perforated plastic bags in the refrigerator.
+ Green Onions can be kept wrapped in a damp paper towel in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. But check out this blog post for 3 more ways to help your green onions last longer!
+ Peppers (banana peppers included) will last about 1 week in the refrigerator. They will keep even better if kept dry.
+ Broccoli is best stored in a perforated plastic bag in the refrigerator for just a few days. The longer it is kept, the lower the vitamin content.
+ Eggplant does not like being cold. It is best to use them quickly, but if you need to store it, wrap in plastic and it will keep in the refrigerator for a couple days.
+ The Cauliflower may have a purple color to it which is due to the heat.  This was our first attempt at spring cauliflower and the hot temperatures resulted in heads that are less than beautiful, but they taste just fine. You can store your cauliflower in a plastic bag for up to a week in the refrigerator.
+ Basil leaves will deteriorate quickly once they get wet, so store unwashed at room temperature. They may last longer if ends are trimmed and placed in an inch of water in a mason jar.

Preservation

How to freeze summer squash:
Sliced: Choose young squash with tender skin. Wash, slice or cube; blanch* three minutes. Cool immediately in cold water, drain. To avoid big chunks of frozen squash, lay flat on a tray and freeze first. Then put into freezer containers and back into the freezer.

*Blanching is bringing water to a boil and slightly cooking the squash to stop the enzymes from breaking down cell walls. This prevents the squash from completely getting mushy when thawed, although it will be softer than fresh squash.

Mashed: Wash, slice and cook in a very small amount of water until just tender. Mash. Pour into a bowl, set in ice water to cool quickly. Package and freeze. Frozen summer squash works best in baked goods recipes.

Recipes

For your convenience this week’s recipes in a printable format.

Meal Plan Menu

Thursday:
If you don’t used your zucchinis in a baked good or preserve it for later, try it in a meatloaf! Additionally, if you aren’t going to use your kale for something like kale chips, you can simply roughly chop it and sauté in the skillet with some olive oil, salt and pepper to go as a side with the zucchini meatloaf.

Zucchini Meatloaf
From The Practical Produce Cookbook by Ray and Elsie Hoover

Ingredients:
2 lbs. ground beef
2 cups coarsely grated zucchini
1 cup milk
1 cup bread or cracker crumbs (or oats)
1 onion, finely chopped
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. parsley
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (optional)

Directions:
Combine all ingredients. Mix thoroughly. Pack into a loaf pan. Bake at 350F for 1 1/4 hours.

Friday:

If you still have beets leftover from the last couple of weeks, you can use them in this salad.

Broccoli Beet Salad
Submitted by Elizabeth Bishop
From Love Beets

Ingredients:
about half pound broccoli, stems cut in half
about 3 oz. mixed seeds (e.g. sunflower, pumpkin, sesame)
1 tbsp soy sauce
about half pound cooked beets, cut into wedges
Small bunch fresh chives, snipped (or green onions)

For the Dressing:
2 tbsp olive oil
Juice 1/2-1 lemon, to taste
Freshly ground pepper and sea salt

Directions
Make the dressing by whisking together the olive oil and lemon juice to taste. Season with freshly ground pepper and sea salt. Set aside. Steam or boil the broccoli for 3-4 minutes until just tender but with a little bite. While the broccoli is cooking, toast the seeds by tipping them into a small frying pan. Add soy sauce and cook over medium heat, tossing regularly to coat all over, for about 3 minutes until the seeds are crisp and golden. Take care not to burn them or they will taste bitter. Arrange the cooked broccoli and beet wedges on your prettiest plate, drizzle with the dressing and sprinkle the toasted seeds. Serve immediately.

Saturday:

If you liked the BBQ cabbage from the potluck last Saturday, have it again!

BBQ Cabbage
As Chef Bob Perry’s recipe is for an extremely large quantity, here is a recipe that is similar but makes about 2 1/2 cups of sauce.

Bourbon Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients:
2 cups ketchup
1/2 cup mild-flavored (light) molasses (sorghum)
1/3 cup bourbon
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons hot pepper sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder

Directions:
Combine all ingredients in heavy large saucepan. Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer uncovered until sauce thickens and flavors blend, stirring frequently, about 15 minutes. (Can be made 1 week ahead. Cover; chill.)

Directions for BBQ Cabbage:
Quarter and chop the cabbage after peeling off outer layers. In a large skillet, cook cabbage in some oil. Add barbecue sauce and cook down until soft and tender.

Sunday:

If you haven’t already eaten your cucumbers fresh in salads or for snacking, gyros are a great way to enjoy them.

Homemade Gyros
Recipe from Culinary Hill

Ingredients:
1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and finely chopped
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon), divided
1 tbsp. fresh dill, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
salt and freshly ground black pepper
6-6 inch pita breads
1/2 medium onion, chopped
2 tbsp. fresh oregano leaves, chopped
1 lb. lean (90/10) ground beef (or lamb)
1 tbsp. olive oil
optional garnishes such as tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet onion and feta cheese

Directions:
Combine yogurt, cucumber, 1 tbsp. lemon juice, dill, 1 garlic clove and 1/2 tsp. salt in a small bowl to make the dill sauce. Chill at least 30 minutes to blend flavors. Preheat oven to 350º. Cut the top quarter of each pita and tear these into pieces and set aside. Wrap pitas in a stack in foil. Place the pitas wrapped in foil in the oven and heat for 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, combine torn pita pieces, onion, remaining 1 tbsp. lemon juice, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. pepper, oregano and remaining garlic in a food processor. Process until a smooth paste forms, about 30 sections. Transfer to a large bowl. Add beef to the paste and mix until thoroughly combined with hands or a spatula. Turn beef mixture out onto a cutting board. Form into a uniform loaf and cut into 12 sections. Roll each section into a ball and flatten into a patty about 1/2″ thick. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add patties and cook until well browned and a dark crust forms on one side, 3-4 minutes. Flip the patties and cook until the second side is also well-browned. Drain on paper towels. Serve with warmed pitas, dill sauce and optional toppings if desired such as shredded lettuce, sliced cucumbers, sliced tomatoes, sliced sweet onion, Kalamata olives or feta cheese.

Monday:

This is a super quick and easy meal to make, and it is delicious! It is also easy to adjust depending on how many people you are feeding.

Dragon Noodles
Recipe from BudgetBytes

Ingredients:
4 oz. lo mein noodles
2 Tbsp butter
¼ tsp crushed red pepper
1 large egg
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp sriracha (rooster sauce)
1 handful fresh cilantro
1 sliced green onion

Directions:
Begin to boil water for the noodles. Once the water reaches a full boil, add the noodles and cook according to the package directions (boil for 5-7 minutes).
While waiting for the water to boil, prepare the sauce. In a small bowl stir together the brown sugar, soy sauce, and sriracha.
In a large skillet melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium-low heat. Add the red pepper to the butter as it melts. Whisk an egg in a bowl and then add to the melted butter. Stir gently and cook through. Once the egg is done cooking, turn off the heat.
When the noodles are tender, drain the water and then add them to the skillet with the cooked egg. Also add the prepared sauce. Turn the heat on to low to evaporate excess moisture, and stir until everything is coated well with the sauce. Sprinkle the sliced green onions and cilantro leaves (whole) on top and serve!

Tuesday:

Happy 4th of July! If you are already grilling burgers, hotdogs or steaks, why not try this grilled cauliflower steak recipe?

Grilled Cauliflower Steaks and Tahini Sauce

From each head of cauliflower, you can cut two thick ‘steaks,’ slicing from top to bottom near the center to yield a pair of slices each held together by the core. This might seem wasteful if it weren’t for the many uses for the remaining florets. The resulting ‘steaks’ seared on the grill, make a head-turning presentation with a creamy tahini sauce. Use any leftover sauce on grilled vegetables, fish or roasted beets.

Ingredients:
Tahini Sauce —
1/4 cup tahini, stirred well to blend
1/4 cup water
2-3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 Tbs minced fresh cilantro
Kosher or sea salt

2 medium cauliflowers
Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

Directions:
1. Prepare a moderate charcoal fire for indirect grilling or preheat a gas grill to medium, leaving one burner unlit.

2. To make the tahini sauce, in a small bowl, whisk together the tahini, 1/4 cup water, and 2 Tbsp lemon juice until smooth. Whisk in the garlic, cilantro, and salt to taste. Taste and adjust with more lemon juice, if desired.

3. Trim each cauliflower, removing any leaves and cutting the stem flush with the base. Set a cauliflower, cut side down, on a cutting board. With a chef’s knife, cut 2 steaks, each about ¾ inch thick, from the center of the cauliflower, so that the core holds each slice together. Repeat with the second cauliflower. Reserve the remaining cauliflower for another use.

4. Put the 4 cauliflower steaks on a tray and brush one side with the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Turn the steaks over, brush the second side, and season with salt and pepper.

5. Place the steaks over indirect heat, cover the grill, and cook, turning once, until tender when pierced, about 15 minutes total. For the final minute or so of cooking, uncover the grill and move the cauliflower directly over the coals or flame to char it slightly.

6. Transfer the steaks to a platter and drizzle with the tahini sauce; you may not need it all. Garnish with cilantro and serve hot or warm.

Wednesday:

Leftovers…clean out the fridge for Thursday’s veggies!