Tuesday, September 13, 2011

11th CSA Week

What a beautiful day!! Much nicer than the chilly rainy day this time last week. It was an interesting day for sure. Kim and I had harvested a few things yesterday as the weather was calling for thunder showers today so thought it was a good idea to try and get ahead. I was able to get the beans, potaotes, carrots done yesterday and Kim was able to get the beets and cucumbers done. It was a good thing we did so much as the truck went on the blink after I dropped the boys off so it was back to harvesting with the tractor. Kim was kind enough to lend me her van to do the Charlottetown delivery. I thought there would be all kinds of room but trying to fit all the bins in the van turned out to be a lesson in patience and trial and error. I was able to get all the bins in but some of the grab items did not make it. I had celery on top of the bins and at one point I had to make a quick stop and the celery came flying from the back. I'm glad the police did not see me as I'm sure I had broken some visibility laws or something along those lines.

The large share had cauliflower, red and white onions, cucumbers, zucchini, fennel, swiss chard, baby carrots, yellow beans and potatoes. The grab bins had celery, sweet green peppers, hot peppers, summer turnip, garlic, cilantro, dill, parsley, basil, leaf celery and more of the above veggies. This is the first year I have grown celery successfully. It looks like celery, other years it looked like very stunted small sad versions of the real thing. I actually haven't had a chance to try it yet as I did not think it was ready yet. I walked by it today and thought I should harvest a few for the grab boxes. I don't have many plants as it hasn't been exactly a success other years but I'll be trying more next year!!

Some of the cauliflower were gigantic today. I weighted a few and several were over two pounds. That's a lot of cauliflower!! Below is a repeat recipe from last year. Laura said she made it again this week and it was just as good as she remembered from last year!!

Cream of Cauliflower Soup II (from allrecipes.com)
2 Tbsp butter
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 carrots, chopped
2 (14.5 oz) cans chicken broth (I started with 4 cups)
1 head cauliflower, chopped
1 cup milk
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 Tbsp dry sherry
1 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley

In a large pot, over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in onion and garlic and cook until onion is translucent, about 5 mins. Stir in potatoes and carrots and cook 5 minutes more. Pour in chicken broth and bring to a boil. Stir in cauliflower, cover, reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender, 10 - 20 minutes. Remove from heat.

Puree in batches in blender, food processor or with an immersion blender. Return to low heat and stir in milk, salt, pepper, nutmeg and sherry. Heat through.

*I found this VERY thick, so I added another cup of broth when heating it for the final time. It could even use 2 cups more than recommended. Some of the reviews online suggested serving parmesan cheese on it. That would probably be good, too. I found it quite tasty.

I made a very yummy soup on the weekend, it was a recipe given to me by my friend Natalie. It was so easy and so yummy. I found it was rather "thin" but a great base to add other cooked veggies to.

Zucchini and Rosemary Soup
Bon Appétit| June 1995
From the Inn at Perry Cabin, St. Michaels, Maryland
Yield: Serves 8

2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, sliced
2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary (i only had dried and use 1/2teaspoon)
6 cups chicken stock or canned low-salt broth
1 russet potato, peeled, sliced (i used 3-4 small-medium sized red potatoes and did not peel them)
3 medium zucchini, thinly sliced (i used 1 large green zucchini)
1 zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (I did not use the extra zucchini)
Croutons (i did not have any)
Chopped green onions (i did not have any)

Melt butter with oil in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté until translucent, about 5 minutes. Mix in garlic and rosemary. Add stock and potato; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Add sliced zucchini; simmer until tender about 15 minutes. Working in batches, puree in blender (I used an immersion blender and that worked really great and so much easier to clean). Season with salt and pepper.
**Cook cubed zucchini in a saucepan of boiling salted water for 30 seconds. Drain. Rewarm soup over medium heat. Ladle into bowls. top with zucchini and croutons. Sprinkle with green onions. **(I did not do this last bit as I got lazy)

The carrots in this weeks share are of the "baby" variety. This would be the size I would normally harvest for the restaurants. I had to cancel those deliveries for a few weeks as I had to make sure there was enough carrots left for the season for the CSA. This has given me the extra time I need to harvest a few things a day ahead for the shares. If the weather continues to be nice like today the carrots should keep growing which will mean larger carrots for next week. I do have one row left of larger carrots that I'm planning on leaving as emergency carrots and hopefully for winter storage. I have lots of carrots planted but I'm wondering if I planted them a bit too late in the season, they might not have time to mature before the real fall weather hits us.

Carrots peaking out from the other veggies

I have greens coming along very nicely and there may be some in next weeks shares. Arugula, mizuna, red mustard, red kale, bok choy, tatsoi, beet greens and spinach are all growing nicely. Derek got a new bearing and some new seals today to fix the tiller so hopefully this wekeend I'll be able to plant more greens for late fall harvests. I'll have to cover them with row covers to try and encourage some faster growth!! I also totally forgot to harvest the radishes today, but next week for sure.

If you've got some fennel left over from last week or if you got some new today and haven't had a chance yet to roast it up make sure you give it a try. I made another big batch of roasted veggies on the weekend. I used beets, carrots, onions, fennel, cauliflower, beans, cabbage (although I would leave it out next time), zucchini (don't add it till the last 15 minutes, i over cooked it slightly!!) and potatoes. Some olive oil, salt and pepper, 375 for 1hour. Amazing!!! Too easy, 1 dish to clean and so yummy.

The winter squash are coming along very nicely in the garden. The pumpkins and gourds are doing really well too. I think we'll plan our next CSA farm day around pumpkin and gourd picking. I'm not really sure when that will be but I would imagine the end of the month or first of October. The black flies are pretty much all gone now so if anyone wants to roam the gardens with their kids its practically a bug free zone now.

I hope your all enjoying the veggies. Thanks to everyone who filled out last weeks survey. Great comments!!

Take care of each other


What to eat first?


The herb grab box

Oh so yummy

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