Archive | 2013 CSA

CSA Week 20: The Very Last Box of the Season


Hello CSA Full Share members,
This week is the last CSA box for the season. Despite the snow, I really do still have fresh produce to put into your boxes, thanks to the high tunnel, and the fact that some crops like to be buried in snow. So here is what you’ll find in your box this week:
Green heirloom tomatoes – you have a choice with these. You can either set them on your window sill and let them ripen up, or you can make some fried green tomatoes. I’ve included Jim’s aunt Mary’s fried green tomato casserole on the website, if your interested in trying that. But please note, that as is typical of amazing cooks, they just wing it with the ingredients, and there is no such thing as using measuring cups.
Semi-ripe heirloom tomatoes – Some heroic tomatoes are almost ripe, so I’ve included some of them too. They will need a little more time on your window sill, but they’ll be ripe soon. Considering that they’ve been exposed to the cold elements, they won’t be quite as tasty as the summer tomatoes, but they will be great to cook them up and use them in chili, stew, or soup.
Peppers – sweet and hot
Cucumbers – two more this week
Winter squash – either a buttercup or a butternut squash
Kale – This hearty green can easily tolerate the cold. This week you’ll find two varieties – dino and curly kale. Both are delish, and both can be used in any kale recipe you find.
[Hopefully] Swiss Chard – Why do I say “hopefully?” While this green does have tolerance to the cold, it’s not as tolerant as kale. I picked some today for the folks in St. Cloud and it was doing well. But we have more hard frost on the way, so we will see how it survives later in the week. You’re probably wondering “why don’t you pick it right now for everyone later this week??” Good question. The answer is that Swiss chard wilts really fast, so if I pick it now, it’ll be wilted later… such a dilemma. Fingers crossed.
Beets with greens – a few small beets complete with greens attached. The greens are terrific to add to a salad, or sauté as a side dish. Here are a few beet and greens recipes to consider too.
Please complete the survey that was provided in last week’s box. Your feedback is very helpful as I begin planning for the 2014 CSA season.
As usual, the delivery/pick-up schedule is as follows:
St. Cloud – delivered to your offices on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – ready for pick-up by 11:00 on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready anytime after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Market Co-op – ready for pick-up by 10:00 on Friday
You can also follow us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms
Thank you so very much for supporting our farm. We hope that you have enjoyed the produce and we look forward to serving you in 2014.
Bountiful blessings to you all,
your farmer,


CSA Week 19: The Last Box for Half Share Members

box 19

Hello CSA Members,
Alas, the season is coming to a close. This week is the last box for the half share members. Full share members, there will be one more box for you next week. I have thoroughly enjoyed providing you all with fresh, organic veggies and fruits this season, and of course, I’ve been eating the harvest along with you too. It’s been a challenging and memorable growing season, I’ve learned a lot, and I’m already looking forward to next year.
But even though the season is ending, don’t forget that we also have organic maple syrup – it’s super delish, and is terrific for gifts. You can get some early holiday shopping done, just give me a holler.
So here is what you’ll find in your box this week:
Survey – Don’t eat this… it won’t taste very good. But I would greatly appreciate your feedback about your experience with Sapsucker Farms CSA this year. It’s a very short survey, so it won’t take long to complete, and I’ve included a self-addressed, stamped envelope too.
Turnips – There are only a couple of turnips in each box. I actually planted quite a lot of turnips this year, but earlier this summer, one of my WWOOFer volunteers did some (ahem) weeding…. and got a little over ambitious. While all of the weeds were definitely eliminated, so were most of the turnips. So this is all that was left.
Brussel sprouts on the stalk – Brussel sprouts are probably one of the most maligned veggies on Earth. Personally, it is one of my favorites. I have a few recipes you can try out, but I usually keep it quite simple – sautéed in olive oil, with garlic, lemon pepper and a little lemon juice. Of course, before you try any of these recipes, you’ll first need to remove the brussel sprouts from the stalk. While I’m sure that the stalk itself is edible, I wouldn’t recommend munching on it…. you might break a tooth.
Beet greens with baby beets – the beets are small, but the greens are big and tasty. Add the greens to a salad, or cook them up like spinach.
Kale – As the weather gets cold, the kale gets a little sweeter and milder. You’ve seen this in your box before, so perhaps you already have a favorite way of preparing it. I use the old standby recipe of sautee in olive oil, add garlic and salt. But I have a collection of recipes if you’re looking for something new.
Cucumber – the cucumber wins the prestigious award of “Most Frequent Veggie Added to Sapsucker Farms CSA Boxes for the 2013 Season.”
Delicata Squash – this small little squash is also referred to as “sweet potato squash.” The orange colored flesh is sweet and mild, and especially good when topped with maple syrup. Of course, everything is better when topped with real maple syrup, right? it is simple to prepare, and here are a few recipe suggestions.

Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – I still have some tomatoes clinging to the vines in the hoop house. In fact, my tomato plants are over 10-feet tall and I have to use a ladder to reach the ones at the top. The colder weather is definitely slowing down their growth, but I’ll continue to harvest them as long as long as the plants are still alive.
Peppers – sweet and hot varieties
Eggplant – The short spurt of warm weather re-invigorated the eggplant plants. Thats good news for all of you eggplant lovers. It’s also good news for those of you who hate eggplant because you can still try one of these recipes to find a way to prepare it so that you too will be an eggplant lover. Or, you can give your eggplant to someone who does like it and you’ll score some points with them.
Pumpkin – Make yourself a pumpkin pie, or pumpkin bread, or a cute little jack-o-lantern. Happy Halloween to you all.
As in keeping with the tradition we’ve had all summer and fall, the pick-up and delivery schedule is as usual:
St. Cloud – delivered to your offices on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – ready for pick-up by 11:00 on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready anytime after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Market Co-op – ready for pick-up by 10:00 on Friday
Even though the season 2013 season has come to a close, I hope to see your smiling faces joining in on the conversations on our Facebook page and on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms
Blessings to you all,
P.S. Full share members…. you’ll be hearing from me same time next week.

CSA Week 18: The Colors of Autumn.

Box 18

Hi CSA Members

This week is a colorful box of veggies. Orange, red, yellow, and green. Just like the colors of the trees this time of year. Here is what you’ll find this week:
Beets with greens – Most of the boxes will have red beets, but I found a few golden beets that survived the wrath of the toothy creatures that invaded the beet patch. So I’ve randomly placed them in them boxes… who will be the lucky recipients?? For those of you who do get the gold beets, they can be prepared just like the red ones, except they’re gold. Don’t forget, the beet greens are also delicious, and can be prepared as a replacement for either spinach or Swiss Chard in any recipes. Or just lightly boiled, topped with butter and a dash of salt.

Winter squash – If you’re not craving squash this week, no problem. The best thing about winter squash is that it can sit in a cool place for weeks. If you desire, you may want to keep it and prepare something for Thanksgiving. Just a thought.
Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – some slicers and some cherries.
Peppers – sweet and hot varieties
Cucumbers – My favorite way to eat them is slicing, then dipping them in Hometown Hummus…. remember that delicious hummus you got awhile back??!

Curly kale – This is probably the most popular kind of kale. I like to make kale chips with them, and the recipe is here, along with a number of other ones to look at too.
As usual, the delivery/pick-up schedule is as follows:
St. Cloud – delivered to your offices on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – ready for pick-up by 11:00 on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready anytime after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Market Co-op – ready for pick-up by 10:00 on Friday
You can also follow us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms

CSA Week 17: Muscles Required.

week 17

Hi CSA members,

I hope you’ve been doing some muscle-building exercises because you’re going to need some muscle to carry home your boxes this week. Here’s what you’ll find:

Apples – Haralred apples, which are a russet variety (thus the steaks/veins running through them) that is versatile for making pies, juicing, or just eating straight up. Just a reminder, as with all of the produce in your boxes all season, our apples are also certified organic. That means you don’t have to worry about any pesticide residue (like conventional apples). Apples are on the EWG “dirty dozen” list of produce that contain residual chemicals. But since we use NO chemicals, you don’t need to be concerned about that.
Potatoes – you’ll find two different varieties: 1.) Purple Viking, which has a purple skin and white flesh. It’s much like a red potato, only it’s purple. 2.) French Fingerlings, which is a small, slender spud, and some of them are really small, more like a potato nugget. But no matter what the color or size, either of these varieties can be prepared like any other potato you’ve ever cooked.
Winter squash – just bake, add some brown sugar (or maple syrup), butter, salt, and say “ahhhhhhh!”
Broccoli florets – You’re wondering “what the heck is a floret??!” This just means that its smaller pieces of broccoli, rather than a whole head of broccoli. You see… when I harvest the broccoli heads, I leave the plant in place. Give it a little time, and some smaller stalks of broccoli will grow from the stem. Most of the harvest this week is florets, but there were a few full heads of broccoli as well.
Red cabbage – In truth, it should be called purple cabbage, as the color is more of a purple than a red color. So it is a nice color complement to the purple potatoes that are also in your box.
Rainbow Swiss Chard – a pretty combination of yellow, red, pink, and white stalks with green leaves. My favorite way of serving Swiss chard is to chop it up, then sauté in olive oil, adds some garlic, and salt to taste. But here are a few other recipes to try.
Leeks – Don’t forget, leeks are hard to clean. I’ve field-cleaned them for you, but you’ll need to thoroughly clean them before you eat them. Perhaps some potato leek soup this week?
Cucumbers – I can’t help it. I’m an awesome cucumber farmer.
Peppers – sweet and hot varieties
Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – are you getting overwhelmed with tomatoes? If you are, did you know that you can just freeze them and use them for sauces, stews, or other cooked dishes? It’s really easy to do. Here’s how:
-With your left hand*, hold the whole, ripe tomato
-Using your right hand**, open the freezer door
P-lace the tomato in the freezer and shut the door
To use the frozen tomato
Reverse the procedure described above
Place frozen (or thawed) tomato into a cooking pot and prepare your favorite recipe
*can be substituted using the right hand
** can be substituted using the left hand
As usual, the pick-up/delivery schedule is 
St. Cloud – Delivered to your offices on Tuesday
Made of Mora – ready for pick-up by 11:00 on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready for pick-up after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Market Co-op – ready for pick up on Friday after 10:00 a.m.
You can follow the on-going farm adventures on our Facebook page or follow me on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms.
Happy October everyone. Enjoy the beautiful autumn colors, and enjoy the bounty.


CSA Week 16: A Colorful Autumn Harvest

box 16

Hi CSA members,

I know my email is a little later than usual, and since the people in St. Cloud have already received their boxes this morning, this won’t be news to them, but anyhooo….. here is what you’ll find in your box this week:
Delicata squash – this is a small squash, also known to many as “sweet potato squash.” My favorite way to make it is very simple. Just poke a few vent hole with a knife, place on a baking dish then bake at 350 until it is tender, about 45 minutes to an hour. Slice it open lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, then scoop out the tasty flesh. Top with butter and maple syrup with a pinch of salt. And if you need some maple syrup, well, I can help you with that too.
Grapes – This is the last of the harvest for the season. I’m happy to say that I managed to keep the yellow jackets away from them this fall. That is quite an accomplishment.
Beets with greens – These are baby beets that were grown inside the hoop house, so they were protected from any toothy critters out in the field. Don’t forget that the greens are also tasty. I have some recipes for both beets and beet greens on my website, but since Swiss Chard is in the beet family, you can use any swiss chard recipe to prepare your beet greens as well.
Melons – just slice and enjoy.
Dino kale – Dark, sturdy leaves that are packed with nutrition. They’re also very versatile and can be prepared in many different tasty ways. Here are a few recipes to consider.
Peppers – Sweet and hot varieties.
Onions – red and white
Cucumbers – yup, they’re still growing.
Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – Thanks to the hoop house, despite the two frosts we’ve had, the tomato plants are still producing.

As usual, the delivery/pick-up schedule is as follows:
St. Cloud – delivered to your offices on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – ready for pick-up by 11:00 on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready anytime after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Market Co-op – ready for pick-up by 10:00 on Friday
I know you don’t want to miss out on any action happening on the farm, so be sure to follow us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms

CSA Week 15: Transition from Summer to Fall

box 15

Hi CSA Members,

This morning I woke up to see the veggie field glistening with a coat of frost. Yes, Mr. Frosty has returned. But that’s ok, since there are a few veggies that need a little nip in the air, to sweeten them up a bit. You’ll be seeing them very soon.
With the first frost, we have officially transitioned from summer to autumn. And the contents of your CSA box is evidence to that fact. This week you’ll find a combination of summer and fall favorites:
Grapes – We have about 10 different varieties of table grapes. I’ve harvested and mixed them all together, so each cluster may taste just a little different. They do have seeds, so be sure you have a proper place to dispose of them. Personally, I like to spew the seeds them at Jim, but I need a little target practice. My aim will get better as the season progresses.
Leeks – If you’re not familiar with leeks, they are a member of the onion family, and look like giant scallions on steroids. The white and light green areas are the edible parts, which all of the recipes explain. You can use them in recipes in place of onions, or you can try potato leek soup or other recipes that I’ve included on the website. However, you should be aware that leeks are really dirt magnets. Even though I have field-cleaned them for you, the only way to get them really clean is to slice them up and then wash them. Here are complete instructions as to how to thoroughly clean leeks.
Onions – You know what to do with these
Basil – the very last of the season. A small amount, enough to make Caprese salads, spice up a dish, or just enjoy the aroma.
Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – Mr. Frosty hasn’t gotten them yet. They’re inside the hoop house, so they’re still protected for a little while longer. But the cool weather has definitely reduced productivity and it won’t be long until they’re done for the season too.
Peppers – Sweet and hot varieties. They too are in the hoop house, so they’re protected from the cold for a little while longer.
Cucumbers – And yes, the cukes are also in the hoop house, but they are definitely slowing down. Not sure how many more there will be, but you’ll keep on getting them as long as they produce.
Eggplant – This is definitely the last of the eggplant. You’ll see some smaller-sized fruits this week too. This is one of the veggies in the field that I hustled to get it all picked before the frost last night. So I also picked the baby ones too, but they are just as tasty. In fact, some recipes prefer the smaller eggplants over the larger ones. Either way, I’ve added a few more new recipes on my website… one of them “eggplant caviar” also includes fresh basil, and guess what, you have that too!!
Melons – I’m waxing melancholic about the melons this year. In the spring, they suffered in the field with the late frost (June 2nd!). In fact, I didn’t think they were even going to make it through. But I stayed by their side, encouraging them, trying to find ways to keep them warm, cheered them, and slowly, they began to grow. Then little melons appeared, and they got bigger. I got happier. I had hope. I really believed that the melons were going to make it. And then the end of their growing season arrived last night. If only we had another week of warm weather, then the melons would be oh so much sweeter and abundant. But alas, that didn’t happen. Sigh. Even though the melons aren’t as plentiful or as ripe as I had hoped they would be, they didn’t fall victim to the Saber-toothed Beet Mouse, so I’m now one point ahead of that little rascal.
As usual, the pick-up/delivery schedule is 
St. Cloud – Delivered to your offices on Tuesday
Made of Mora – ready for pick-up by noon on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready for pick-up after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Market Co-op – ready for pick up on Friday after 10:00 a.m.
And you can follow the on-going farm adventures on our Facebook page or follow me on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms.


CSA Week 14: August is finally here

Week 14
Hi CSA members
Alas, August has arrived. Yes, I know the calendar says it’s September, but based on what’s ripening up in the veggie field, I’m harvesting produce that is usually ready in August. (Remember that cold, late spring??). Anyhoooo….. here is what you’ll find in your box this week:
Sweet corn – The rain last night sure helped to ripen up the last of the harvest for the season
Melons – you’ll each get a melon of some variety. I have a number of different kinds and a range of sizes too.
Edamame – I’m having a blast hearing all of the different ways people are pronouncing this. In case you’re not sure, it’s pronounced “Ed-dah-MOM-may.” But it really doesn’t matter how you pronounce it, I hope you’ve enjoyed it. Just a reminder, that this does need to be cooked. Once again, I’ll include the basic preparation recipe in your box, but you can also try some of these edamame recipes too.
Eggplant – Did you try making some Baba Ganoush? Do you like it as much as I like it?? That would be my first recommendation, otherwise you can try out some of the other recipes I have on my website.
Cucumbers – They’re still coming. By now I’m sure you’ve figured out how to add this into your meal planning.
Zucchini – either a green or yellow one included this week. If you’re still looking for new ideas to prepare zucchini, here are a few options to consider.
Onions – sweet white onions and/or red onions.
Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – a variety of colors and sizes for you to enjoy.
Peppers – sweet and hot. Combine with the tomatoes and the onions for some super fresh salsa.
Red cabbage – Makes delicious slaw. But it can also be braised, stuffed, or fermented for kimchi. I admit, I’ve never had kimchi, but someday I do plan to give it a try. Here are some recipes that may interest you.
Lettuce – this is definitely the very last of the lettuce for the season. Remember all of the lettuce you got early in the season?? We sure have come a long way since then, eh? Enjoy the last pickings of the season.
On another note…. I’m running low on waxed produce boxes, so if you have a stash of boxes that you’ve been collecting over the summer, I sure could use them. I’ll be happy to keep refilling them for the rest of the season. I promise.
As usual, the delivery/pick-up schedule is as follows:
St. Cloud – delivered to your offices on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – ready for pick-up by 11:00 on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready anytime after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Market Co-op – ready for pick-up by 10:00 on Friday
I know you don’t want to miss out on any action happening on the farm, so be sure to follow us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms


CSA Week 13: A Handful of Everything

Week 13

Hi CSA Members,

This week you’ll find several new things. Well… actually…. everything in your box, every week is always new, never used…. I guarantee that you will never receive any used vegetables from me. Ever. So what I mean is that there are some things that you haven’t had yet this season.
Many of these new items are just a handful right now, but there is more to come, (I hope) if the weather cooperates and the rest of the crops ripen up. Just a reminder, we had a very cold spring, so many of the crops didn’t bet planted until a month later than normal, and we are now seeing the consequences of that.
OK… I’ve babbled enough. Here is what you’ll find this week:
Sweet corn – I’m happy to say that I do have some sweet corn for you this year. But I’m STILL waiting for it to ripen up. I planted three varieties, and one variety is ready, while the other two are just barely starting to ripen. So you will be getting just a handful of ears, enough for a family meal. So keep your fingers crossed that the remaining crop will ripen up in time for a family feast in the near future.
Melons – I’m happy to say that I have a lot of melons in the field. But just like the corn, a lot of it still needs some time to ripen up. It’s SOOOOOO close. But it looks like I’ll have enough for this week. I have quite a variety of melons this year, ranging from watermelons, to small, specialty heirloom varieties. Some are really small, like the size of a grapefruit so some of you might find a melon in your box that you’ve never seen before.
Eggplant – This is one of those veggies that you either love or hate. I happen to love them. For those of you who hate them, I know that is is because you had a bad experience with it sometime in your past. So I hope you’ll be adventurous, and try one of the recipes I have on the website. Personally, you can’t go wrong with Baba Ganoush – roasted eggplant with garlic, olive oil, tahini, cumin… super yum. At minimum, it’s really fun to just say “BABA GANOOSH!”
Swiss chard – Just a handfull. My favorite way to serve it is to sauté in olive oil and add garlic and salt. Boom. But there are a few more recipes to consider on my website as well.
Edamame – Last week, the full share peeps got the first harvest of edamame. For those of you who don’t know what this is, it’s a Japanese soy bean. Please note that it MUST BE COOKED in order to enjoy it. I included the simple, basic preparation recipe in your box. You’ll also find a link to other edamame recipes on my website too.
Basil – Just a handful. I felt it was necessary to include some basil so you can make some fresh Caprese salads using the tomatoes which are also included in your box.
Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – yup.
Scallions – My favorite way to enjoy these little green onions is to take a bite, then snuggle up to Jim and say “Hhhhhhhii Hhhhhhhhoney!” I know he really likes that.
Onions – I’m thinking of doing the same thing with onions, as I do with Scallions. Whatcha think… will Jim like that too??
Peppers – Sweet and hot ones.
Carrots – the very last handful of the season.
Cucumbers – Another one for you to add to a salad.
No zucchini – Actually, I do still have lots of zucchini in the field, but I ran out of time to harvest it, and the box was already filling up, so I opted not to include it this week. But you might be seeing more of it again this season, in case you miss it this week.
Pick-up/Deliver schedule is as usual
St. Cloud – delivered to your office on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – ready for pick up by 11:00 on Thursday
Sapsucker Farms – ready for pick up after noon on Thursday or Friday
Cambridge City Center Market Co-op – Ready by 10:00 on Friday morning

CSA Week 12: Nothing on a Stick

week 12

Hi CSA members

In honor of the Minnesota State Fair in progress, I would have loved to give you something on a stick. But the only thing I could come up with is for you to make your own version of food-on-a-stick by using a skewer on some of your CSA goodies and make yourself a shish kabob and cook it on the grill. With that as your inspiration… here is what you’ll find in your box this week:
Edamame – Perhaps you’ve never heard of this before… and no, it won’t work on a shish kabob…. It is, however, by far my personal favorite veggie that I grow here on the farm. This is a Japanese soy bean, but it MUST BE COOKED to enjoy it. Don’t worry… if you already tried to eat one raw right out of the box before you saw this email, it won’t hurt you. It just isn’t very good when it’s raw. The good news is that cooking it is very easy. I included cooking instructions in your box as well, but here is the basics: boil them for 5 minutes, drain, add some salt, then pop them out of the pod and enjoy – hot or cold. For more recipes, here is a collection of edamame recipes for you to try out.
Broccoli – I thought the harvest was complete. To my surprise, there is still some more out in the field.
Shallots – one or two, depending on the size. But it might be tricky for you as the variety of shallot you’ll see this week looks like a little onion. Fortunately, shallots and onions can be used interchangeably, so there won’t be any harm done if you accidentally use a shallot instead of an onion. Unlike accidentally using a cup of salt instead of a cup of sugar in a recipe which would be pretty nasty.
Beet greens with survivor beets  attached — Please note that the emphasis here is beet greens. I have not yet been able to capture the critters that are eating the beets. But the greens are also very good. Since Swiss chard is also in the beet family, you can merely replace the beet greens for Swiss chard in any of the recipes I have on my website. Or you can just add them to the lettuce and make a pretty salad.
Rainbow carrots – A collection of white, yellow, orange, or red carrots. Some of them have rather entertainingly gnarly shapes too. I saw a ghost, a cow udder, an aardvark, and a dog. Let me know what you see.
Onions – Yellow and red onions this week.
Peppers – Sweet and hot varieties.
Vine-ripened heirlooms tomatoes – I have oodles and oodles of them right now, so plan on seeing them for quite awhile.
Beans – To my surprise, the bean field is still producing. You’ll find a combination of purple, yellow, and/or green beans.
Cucumbers – by now you’ve probably figured out that you’ll be seeing more cucumbers again in the future. I’ve got a lot of them.
Summer squash/zucchini – believe it or not, the zucchinis are starting to slow down. Admittedly, I do have some enormous-sized squash out in the field, as zucchinis just keep growing until they’re picked. But don’t worry, I won’t be putting any of them in your boxes. They wouldn’t fit even if I tried.
Lettuce – one small head. This hot weather has been tough on the lettuce as it will bolt when it gets too hot.
The pick-up/delivery schedule is as usual:
St. Cloud – delivery to your office on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – Thursday morning by 11:00
Sapsucker Farms – Thursday or Friday anytime after 12:00 noon
Cambridge City Co-op – Friday morning by 10:00
Meanwhile, you can follow all of the farm adventures on our Facebook page or follow on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms.

CSA Week 11: Tasty Baby Roots

Week 11

Hello CSA members,
Here is something really fun… the New York Times Farmer’s Market recipe generator. Check it out. You select the kind of veggie you want to cook, how you want to cook it, and what kinds of herbs you want to add, then click and TA DA… an easy recipe to try. And this week, there are a number of different veggies you can use to challenge this tool.
In your box this week:
Rainbow (yellow, red, orange, white) baby carrots – I’ve been checking the carrots all summer. They’ve been growing slowly, and while some of them have reached a mature size, I finally just decided to harvest them as baby carrots. Baby carrots are so sweet, tender, and aromatic. The best way to eat them is to munch on them the minute you take them out of your CSA box.
Beet greens with teeny tiny micro-baby beets – Ok… stick with me here… First of all, beet greens are delicious. They can be added to salads, simply sautéed in olive oil and garlic, or try one of the recipes I have posted on my website. Now… why are the beets so small? Here’s the scoop. All summer I’ve had a turf war with the mighty Saber-toothed Beet Mouse. As soon as a beet grew big, along came this little monster and chomped a big chunk out of it. ARGH. These critters are small, very wily, and are hard to remove from the beet patch. I admit, I’ve never seen one, but I’m sure I’ll recognize it… they have to have big fangs and really red lips from eating all of my beets. Sigh…Since I was losing the battle with this toothy creature, I opted to cut my losses, so I harvested the remaining crop of tiny beets so you can at least enjoy the beet greens. Of course, there were a few sturdy beets that managed to survive the attacks, so you’ll find a few there. The good news is that I did plant more beets in the hoop house, and so far I’ve seen no evidence of the Saber-Toothed Beet Mouse gaining entry inside the hoop house. More news on this in the future.
Lettuce – Add some beet greens to make a nice, colorful salad.
Shallots – As I mentioned previously, this is the first year I’ve grown shallots, so I didn’t grow very many of them. This is the last of that trial batch, but I’ll definitely grow more next year.
Onions – sweet white onions, combine with the sweet and hot peppers and tomatoes to make some awesome salsa.
Sweet and Hot Peppers – As noted above, how about some fresh salsa?
Vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes – I have tomatoes galore right now, so you can plan on a lot more in the future. Have you noticed that the cherry tomatoes are almost as sweet as candy?!
Beans – French fillet green beans, the last of the season. Some of you may find some yellow and purple beans too, also the last of the season. See below… I’ve included a recipes for braised beans, something I learned from CSA member Rana Olson (total YUM!). She shared a portion with me, explained the recipe, and I tried it out. Super easy, and oh so delish. Rana is also the one who made the authentic Turkish hummus that was included in your last box. By the way, let me know if any of you want more hummus too!
Cucumbers – yup. they just keep on coming.
Zucchini – yup. Just like cucumbers, they just keep on coming.
As always, the pick-up/delivery schedule is as follows:
St. Cloud – Delivered to your office on Tuesday morning
Made of Mora – Thursday by 11:00
Sapsucker Farms – Thursday or Friday after noon
Cambridge City Center Market Co-op – Friday by 10:00 a.m.
Rana’s Totally Awesome Braised Beans
Note: The measurements and timing below are not precise, I’m kind of guessing, so you can adjust the recipe according to your own taste.
1/2 lb. beans – ends trimmed and cut in half
1/2 lb. tomatoes – cut into small chunks
1 shallot or 1 small onion (or more if you like) – sliced
1 to 2 minced garlic (or as much as you want)
3 Tablespoons olive oil
Salt to tasted
In large fry pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat, add sliced shallot and/or onion, sauté for a minute or two. Add beans, sauté for a few minutes, then add tomatoes, cook for another few minutes, add garlic. Turn heat to very low, then simmer uncovered for about 30 minutes until the tomato juice is slightly reduced. Then cover and continue to simmer on low for about another 30 minutes until beans are tender. Salt to taste. Enjoy hot or cold.
Enjoy the bounty. Meanwhile, you can follow all of the farm adventures on our Facebook page or follow on Twitter @SapsuckerFarms.

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