CSA Newsletter Week #13 August 21st

Farm Notes
This week, apprentices and farm staff alike took a field trip to Louisville to visit other farms and gardens. We visited Rootbound Farm, Foxhollow Farm, and the 7th Street Community Garden in the Louisville urban area. The farm tours and conversations increased our knowledge, inspired us, and filled us all with greater appreciation for our fellow food producers.

IMG_4904Ben Abell, former South Farm Manager, shares with apprentices about his enterprise, Rootbound Farm

This trip was a perfect way for the students to wrap up their tenure at South Farm. With classes starting next week, we are bound to see less of the apprentices in our fields. But while our labor supply may decrease, the harvests remain plentiful!

This is the last week for yellow squash and zucchini. We are getting ready to turn a corner as we head towards fall; greens, radishes, turnips, and potatoes will be coming soon!

Note From an Apprentice
By Sarah Newman

Hello, all! You may have seen me at the CSA distribution site, but let me formally introduce myself. My name is Sarah Newman. I am a native Oklahoman, lover of watermelon, student of horticulture science, and a current apprentice in the sustainable agriculture program at the University of Kentucky. As many of my classmates have expressed in previous postings, the hands-on approach to education we are experiencing out at the Horticulture Research Farm has been fun and immeasurably valuable. I can now drive a tractor, repair minor leaks in a drip irrigation system, and (barely) arc weld a straight line on a scrap piece of metal. I have seen the implementation of practices I have been studying in textbooks and the literal fruits of our labor. For me, the most important thing that I have taken from this apprenticeship is a hefty reminder as to why I am trying to earn a B.S. degree in Plant and Soil Science at all; why sustainability even matters. It’s the people. It’s YOU.

14814876466_e208f12469_zSarah helping with a recent pepper harvest

I have been pursuing an undergraduate degree since 2003. It’s been a long journey to this specific path that I am on and, honestly, after spending long nights in the library and long months processing data for a senior project, I have become increasingly jaded. Thankfully, because of the apprenticeship, I have been introduced to a community of people who care about their food, their land, their future and, really, each other. I have been reminded that, as poet John Donne once wrote, “No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main.” Your faces and stories each week remind me that humanity binds us and I have a part in making this community stronger. What a lesson to take with me as the summer comes to a close and I embark on my final year as an undergraduate student. I am so grateful.

Although classes for the apprenticeship ended yesterday, I plan on being a part of the CSA distribution and farm work well into the fall. I look forward to seeing you all as the temperatures cool, the harvest begins to look different, and my over caffeinated, long nights of the semester return. It’s truly been a joy to get my hands dirty and bring you food every week. I hope your summer has been just as rewarding!

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What’s In Your Share

For August 21st, you’ll find:

+ Cantaloupe
+ Roma Beans
+ Tomatoes
+ Squash
+ Zucchini
+ Cucumbers
+ Onions
+ Sweet Peppers
+ Hot Peppers

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The following crops are available for U-Pick:

+ Flowers
+ Herbs
+ Okra
+ Cherry Tomatoes
+ Basil and Dill Flowers – There is a newer crop of basil to U-Pick in the middle of the row, closest to the Dill Flowers. Both crops are in the 5th field.

Please remember to bring your own pruners or scissors for harvesting U-Pick items!

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Veggie Tips

+ Roma Beans, also known as Romano or Italian Flat Beans, differ from other green beans due to their flatter, stringless pods and a texture that is meatier. These beans pack great flavor into their pods. The texture and flavor of Roma beans stand up to canning well. To eat, trim off ends, but don’t overcook them! Lightly cook to keep their crunch.

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Recipes

Roma Bean Salad with Tomato Garlic Vinaigrette

Ingredients:
1 bunch fresh and crisp roma beans
2 cloves pink fresh garlic
6 cherry plum tomatoes
1 tablespoon mustard– preferably hot pepper mustard, but any nice smooth not sweet mustard will do
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoon red wine vinegar

Directions:
1. You get to use your mortar and pestle for this one! Lightly smash the plum cherry tomatoes. You do not want them to become a pulp, but you want them thoroughly deseeded and juiced. Pour this, skins and all, into the bowl you’ll be using for the salad.

2. Smash the garlic, either in the same mortar and pestle or using a meat hammer. Add to tomatoes.

3. Whisk together the mustard, olive oil and vinegar, and pour over the crushed tomatoes and garlic.

4. Boil abundant salty water. Blanch the beans. They shouldn’t stay in the water for not much more than three minutes or so– you want them to retain crunch but not be a challenge, and you want to emphasize their fresh flavour. Once you’ve removed them from the water, snip off their pointy ends and slice into inch-long pieces. Place, still hot, onto the tomato-garlic vinaigrette, and mix.

Enjoy! This salad is great still slightly warm.

Serves 2 as a side dish.

Zucchini Chips
From madeinourkitchen.com

Ingredients:
1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons milk
2 1/2 cups (1/4-inch-thick) slices zucchini
Cooking spray

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425°F. Combine first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Place milk in a shallow bowl. Dip zucchini slices in milk, and dredge in breadcrumb mixture. Place coated slices on an ovenproof wire rack coated with cooking spray; place rack on a baking sheet. Bake at 425°F for 30 minutes or until browned and crisp. Serve immediately.

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