CSA Newsletter Week #1, May 28th

Farm Notes

This week has been an extra busy week due to the holiday weekend. On Tuesday we were able to get all of our tomatoes tied up with the help of our apprentices. We used a technique called the Florida weave to give our tomatoes the best support they can get! We also got to use our finger weeder to weed the onions and carrots. The finger weeder is an implement that hooks up to the back of a tractor and has rubber fingers that turn up the soil close to the plant. The purpose of it is to weed as close to the plant as possible and get in the row between the plants. It did quite a good job! Below is a picture of our apprentices tying tomatoes.


What’s In Your Share

For this week , you’ll receive:

+ lettuce heads

+ spinach

+ kale

+ braising mix (greens)

+ green garlic

+ arugula


Veggie Tips

+ In case any of you are wondering, green garlic is garlic that has been harvested before it has matured. The garlic stalk is still green and the bulb has not begun to separate into cloves. Green garlic can be used similarly to green onions or scallions. Both the bulb and the greens can be used. The stalk and leaves may be a bit tough, but chopping it into smaller pieces and sauteing or cooking it will do just nicely. The flavor is also not as potent as mature garlic, although it is definitely  still garlic, as I’m sure all hands that harvested it can attest!


+ This week’s spinach mix looks a little different. We harvested a red stemmed variety called Red Kitten spinach. As far as I can tell, the taste is very similar. But it does look nice to add a little bit of color! Spinach also provides high levels of vitamin A, folate, vitamin C and potassium. Just as a fun fact, recipes with “Florentine” in the name indicate spinach as an ingredient.




Spinach Garlic Soup

Submitted by apprentice Cheryl Kastanowski

10 ounces fresh spinach, trimmed and coarsely chopped
4 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup chopped onion
8 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup butter or margarine
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

In a 5-qt. Dutch oven, bring spinach, broth and carrots to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; cool to lukewarm.

Meanwhile, in skillet, saute onion and garlic in butter until onion is soft, about 5-10 minutes. Add flour; cook and stir over low heat for 3-5 minutes. Add to spinach mixture. Puree in small batches in a blender or food processor until finely chopped. Place in a large saucepan. Add cream, milk, pepper and nutmeg; heat through but do not boil.


Chicken Florentine

Recipe by Giada De Laurentiis from foodnetwork.com


4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
salt and freshly ground black pepper
all-purpose flour, for dredging
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
2 tablespoons shallots, sliced
1 tablespoon chopped garlic (or you could substitute the green garlic you received in your share!)
1 1/2 cups dry white wine
1 cup of whipping cream
1 tablespoon of chopped, fresh Italian parsley
2 (10 oz) packages frozen cut-leaf spinach, thawed and drained (or the spinach you received in your share!)


Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour to coat lightly. Shake off any excess flour. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook until brown, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate and tent with foil to keep it warm.

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the same skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic and saute until the shallots are translucent, stirring to scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the skillet, about 1 minute. Add the wine. Increase the heat to medium-high and boil until the liquid is reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the cream and boil until the sauce reduces by half, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Stir in the parsley. Season the sauce, to taste, with salt and pepper. Add the chicken and any accumulated juices to the sauce, and turn the chicken to coat in the sauce.

Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in another large skillet over medium heat. Add the spinach and saute until heated through. Season the spinach, to taste, with salt and pepper. Arrange the spinach over a platter. Place the chicken atop the spinach. Pour the sauce over and serve.


Sauteéd Braising Greens with Garlic

Adapted from The Vegetable Dishes I Can’t Live Without by Mollie Katzen

3 Tbs extra virgen olive oil
2 medium-sized bulbs garlic, roasted
8 to 10 cups (packed) braising greens (1#)
1/2 to 1 tsp minced or crushed garlic
salt, to taste

1.  Roast garlic by wrapping peeled garlic cloves in foil, spooning 1 tsp oil into foil packet, and roasting for 20-30 min at 325°.
2. Stem greens if necessary, and leave whole (if small) or coarsely chop (if medium).
3. Place a large, deep skillet over medium heat.  Add half remaining olive oil, half the greens and stir-fry for about 5 minutes.  Stir in half the fresh garlic, spring lightly with salt if desired and set-aside.
4. Repeat step 3 with remaining oil, greens, and fresh garlic.  When greens are wilted and fresh garlice mixed in, reduce heat and add the first batch of greens to pan.  Add roasted garlic, toss to combine, adding extra oil and salt if desired.  Serve!


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