Our best crop

The official last pick of our fall season is tomorrow. It is indeed bittersweet as our incredible crew will soon be disbanding. Some are moving away to new adventures, some are staying for another season but this particular group of stellar humans and workers will never be on the farm together again. It is surreal knowing that the family we form each season on the farm is always just 9 months long. We go through such an intense experience together - fighting all the odds and working the longest hours to grow a year's worth of food. I truly believe that work is love made visible and this particular type of work creates lasting relationships for the people who engage in it every year. But the family ebbs and flows just like the season's do and we'll continue to provide a place for people to feel good about what they do and get their hands dirty, maybe just for 9 months or maybe for the rest of their lives. I feel so grateful for all the people who have worked on this farm and for our customers who continue to support us through it all. This food community is our best crop. 

Scenes from the farm: the farm crew enjoying a well-deserved dinner and dancing, farm dogs in the misty morning, bagging parsnips, the largest tatsoi, farm dogs in front of the wood stove - signs of winter. 

The Share:

kale

spinach

arugula

specialty greens mix

head lettuce

tatsoi

cabbage

parsnip

daikon

watermelon radish

beets

carrots

celery root

purple top turnips

rutabaga

fennel

hakurei turnips

onions

kohlrabi

parsnips

MASHED POTATO, RUTABAGA AND PARSNIP CASSEROLE WITH CARAMELIZED ONIONS 

BON APPÉTIT NOVEMBER 1994

YIELD

Serves 8 to 10

INGREDIENTS

    • 7 cups canned low-salt chicken broth (or vegetable stock)
    • 3 pounds russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
    • 1 1/2 pounds rutabagas, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
    • 1 1/4 pounds parsnips, peeled, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
    • 8 garlic cloves
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
    • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, room temperature
    • 3 large onions, thinly sliced

 

PREPARATION

    1. Butter 13 x 9x2-inch glass baking dish. Combine first 7 ingredients in large pot; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover partially and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 30 minutes. Drain well. Transfer vegetables to large bowl. Add 1/2 cup butter. Using electric mixer, beat mixture until mashed but still chunky. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer mashed vegetables to prepared dish.
    2. Melt remaining 1/4 cup butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sliced onions and sauté until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low and sauté until onions are tender and golden brown, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Spread onions evenly over mashed vegetables. (Casserole can be prepared up to 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)
    3. Preheat oven to 375° F. Bake casserole uncovered until heated through and top begins to crisp, about 25 minutes.

November marches on...

Whew! Last week was tough! The crew worked extra hours and we got all the veggies in and all the greens covered. It looks like everything survived those freezing temps and we're feeling pretty good that all our hard work paid off! We have walk-in coolers full of vegetables for the winter and greens sweetened by the freeze. The weeds have finally died and we are hoping the caterpillars have too. We are finishing our last seeding in the greenhouses for winter and starting to plant the garlic. Our to-do list is still full of cleanup and root washing before winter but the end of this crazy season is near...

Scenes from the farm: Kat and the giant fennel; Breezy and Phoenix the happy harvesters; the cooler half-full; Breezy and Ember harvesting in the cold; Duma eating cabbage; Malaika, Laura and Breezy after the late-night emergency squash transfer; Ember, Laura and Kat seeding swiss chard for the winter. 

The Share:

arugula

spinach

head lettuce

specialty greens

kale

radicchio

cauliflower

fennel

cabbage

cilantro

beets

carrots

lunchbox peppers

kohlrabi

hakurei turnip

tatsoi

swiss chard

celery root

radishes

winter squash

onions

garlic

 

Roasted Carrot & Fennel Soup

This simple vegan soup can be prepared quickly on a weeknight. Roast the carrots in advance for and even faster meal.

 Course Soup

 Prep Time 10 minutes

 Cook Time 30 minutes

 Total Time 40 minutes

 Servings 

 Author Megan

Ingredients

  • 1 pound carrots
  • Olive oil
  • 1 bulb fennel
  • 1/2 cup sliced onion
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 cups vegetable broth

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Slice carrots into planks and toss with olive oil. Roast for about 20 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a stockpot set over medium.

  4. Trim fronds from fennel and save for another use (I like to use it as a bed for baking fish). Slice fennel bulb thinly.

  5. Add fennel and onion to the pot and stir to coat with oil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until quite soft and starting to caramelize.

  6. Stir in ginger, coriander, salt, and pepper.

  7. When the carrots have roasted, add them to the pot, then add the vegetable broth. Bring everything to a boil then reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes.

  8. Using an immersion blender, puree soup until smooth. Serve, with sriracha or cream, if desired.

 

Before the FREEZE

This week we are hustling through the cold and rain to get everything out of the fields before it freezes on Friday! This is a pretty early freeze, we usually expect some hard frosts in November but a low time temp of 20 degrees is pretty extreme. We might have to work a few extra hours this week but we'll get it done. Cabbages, root veggies, broccoli and greens all either have to be covered or harvested before a freeze. The crops being stored in tunnels will have to be moved into places that won't freeze and our new winter greens will get their first shock of real cold. Weather extremes like this mean changing strategies - bringing in crops the fastest way possible, waiting to wash them and getting everything inside and out of the cold first. It's a farmer's job to always be flexible and willing to change the plan. 

Scenes from the farm: first succession of winter lettuce in this house, beds ready for garlic, Duma sleeping next to his favorite snack, Ember on her first solo tractor drive, and storage carrots ready to go. 

The November Extension Share!

head lettuce

arugula

specialty greens

tatsoi

spinach

kale

carrots

beets

fennel

radicchio

escarole

swiss chard

sweet peppers

onions

garlic

winter squash

broccoli

kohlrabi

rutabaga

radishes

hakurei turnip

cabbage

CARROT PIE

 

 

PRINT

PREP TIME

10 mins

COOK TIME

80 mins

TOTAL TIME

1 hour 30 mins

CARROT PIE – PERFECT FALL & HOLIDAY PIE

http://www.craftycookingmama.com/carrot-pie-perfect-fall-holiday-pie/

If you like pumpkin pie you're going to love this carrot pie. Sweet, creamy, perfectly spiced and it's easier to make!

Serves: 8 servings

INGREDIENTS

  • pre-baked and cooled 9" pie crust
  • 1½ pound carrots
  • 2 tablespoon butter, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ¾ cup half and half
  • 1 tablespoon flour

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Peel and chop carrots.
  2. Place carrots in large pot, cover with water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until carrots are tender, about 25 - 30 minutes.
  3. Drain water. Return carrots to pot. Cook carrots over low heat, stirring constantly, for a few minutes, to steam off all excess water.
  4. Puree carrots and butter until absolutely smooth. You can do this in a food processor, blender, food mill or with a ricer.
  5. I use my food processor. After the carrots are smooth, mix in sugars, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, ginger, vanilla, half & half and flour until well combined.
  6. Pour mixture into prebaked & cooled 9" pie crust.
  7. Bake at 350° for 50 - 60 minutes or pie is set and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  8. Cool on wire rack. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours before serving. Serve with whipped cream and enjoy 
  9.  

 

A sense of final things

As halloween candy fills our pockets out to the field, we revel in how nice it is to be outside this time of year and soak up the sights and smells. The soil is soft and cool to the touch and planting for the winter is such a satisfying task. Once the last of the greens are in and the garlic is planted we will have finished sowing our seeds for the year. There is so much more of a finality to these days that every task feels more significant. The crew this year has been the best ever - dealing with the chaos of running 2 farms, the late nights of 2 CSA pickups and the early mornings of additional markets and harvest days. Every morning they still greet each other with smiles and hugs and snacks to share through out the day. I feel so lucky to spend my days with these great people and as we check off the final lists it feels nice to relax a bit and enjoy each other's company as the season winds down for the winter. 

Scenes from the farm: mondo-fall fennel is the best, the Delval lacrosse team once again helping pick up our plastic mulch from the fields (thank goodness), Laura getting in the Halloween spirit, a portrait of the long island cheese pumpkin.

The Share:

arugula

specialty greens

salad mix

head lettuce

kale

hakurei turnips

carrots

beets

spinach

cabbage

kohlrabi

broccoli

escarole

fennel

radicchio

tatsoi

celery root

cilantro

dill 

parsley

winter squash

onions

garlic

parsnips

Roasted Parsnip Soup with Walnut Pesto

INGREDIENTS

 

  • 2 pounds medium parsnips, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons walnuts, toasted

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped mixed fresh herbs (such as tarragon, flat-leaf parsley, and chives)

  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

  • 4 cups vegetable stock

 

RECIPE PREPARATION

  • Preheat oven to 400°. Toss parsnips with 1 Tbsp. oil in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Arrange parsnips in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and roast until tender and lightly caramelized, 22–25 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, pulse walnuts and herbs in a mini-processor until very finely chopped. (Alternatively, crush walnuts and herbs with a mortar and pestle to form a coarse paste.) Add remaining 2 Tbsp. oil and lemon juice and pulse to combine. Season pesto to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.

  • Let parsnips cool slightly, then transfer to a blender. Add stock; purée until smooth. Pour soup into a large saucepan and heat over medium heat until warmed through. Season with salt and pepper and divide among bowls. Drizzle with pesto and serve.

After apple picking

While we haven't been picking apples, this is exactly how we feel. Robert Frost always says it best. 

“After Apple-Picking” by Robert Frost

My long two-pointed ladder’s sticking through a tree
Toward heaven still,
And there’s a barrel that I didn’t fill
Beside it, and there may be two or three
Apples I didn’t pick upon some bough.
But I am done with apple-picking now.
Essence of winter sleep is on the night,
The scent of apples: I am drowsing off.
I cannot rub the strangeness from my sight
I got from looking through a pane of glass
I skimmed this morning from the drinking trough
And held against the world of hoary grass.
It melted, and I let it fall and break.
But I was well
Upon my way to sleep before it fell,
And I could tell
What form my dreaming was about to take.
Magnified apples appear and disappear,
Stem end and blossom end,
And every fleck of russet showing clear.
My instep arch not only keeps the ache,
It keeps the pressure of a ladder-round.
I feel the ladder sway as the boughs bend.
And I keep hearing from the cellar bin
The rumbling sound
Of load on load of apples coming in.
For I have had too much
Of apple-picking: I am overtired
Of the great harvest I myself desired.
There were ten thousand thousand fruit to touch,
Cherish in hand, lift down, and not let fall.
For all
That struck the earth,
No matter if not bruised or spiked with stubble,
Went surely to the cider-apple heap
As of no worth.
One can see what will trouble
This sleep of mine, whatever sleep it is.
Were he not gone,
The woodchuck could say whether it’s like his
Long sleep, as I describe its coming on,
Or just some human sleep.

Scenes from the farm: Re-skinning the greenhouse (it took 4 tries but we finally got it done), winter greens seeded, Farmer Malaika so happy with her arm full of radicchio.

The Share:

salad mix

head lettuce

arugula

salad mix

kale

spinach

cabbage

beets

carrots!

kohlrabi

broccoli

escarole

fennel

radish

watermelon radish

radicchio

tatsoi

celery root

sweet peppers

eggplant

cilantro

dill

parsley

potatoes

winter squash

onions

garlic

Recipe of the week:

Arugula, Carrot & Celery Root Salad with Almonds

 

Ingredients

  • 2 Tbs. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbs. honey
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 6 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 medium carrots (1 lb.)
  • 1 medium celery root (3/4 to 1 lb.)
  • 6 lightly packed cups baby arugula (about 6 oz.)
  • 3/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Preparation

  • In a small bowl, whisk the vinegar, honey, and mustard. Whisk in the oil and season with 1/2 tsp. salt and a few grinds of pepper.

    Peel and trim the carrots and celery root and then grate them in a food processor fitted with a medium grating disk. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the arugula, half of the almonds and half of the cilantro; toss with the vinaigrette. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with the remaining almonds and cilantro and serve.

 

The Frost Hustle

We had our first frost this morning. It was light enough not to damage any of the plants but it was a kick in the pants to get our fields cleaned up and keep working on our harvest list. While it seems like the farm should be slowing down our to-do list is still long and the time we have before the ground freezes is short. The frost gave us permission to begin to dismantle the tomato field and harvest the last of the peppers. It's time to move on and race to end of the season. 

Scenes from the farm: removing the old greenhouse plastic to put on a new skin before seeding winter greens, beautiful harvest days, the pumpkin patch in Titusville, radicchio harvest, Duma sleeping on everything but his bed (also, the chaos of the barn by the end of the season). 

The Share:

head lettuce

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens

spinach

napa cabbage

green cabbage

kale

beets

kohlrabi

broccoli

escarole

fennel

radish

radicchio

tatsoi

celery root

sweet peppers

eggplant

cilantro

dill

parsley

potatoes

winter squash

onions

Recipe of the week:

Fennel, Orange, and Cabbage Slaw

Ingredients

  • 6 cups shredded cabbage
  • 2 medium oranges, peeled and segmented
  • 1 large fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • Fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds

How to Make It

Step 1    

In a large bowl, combine the cabbage, oranges, fennel, and parsley.

Step 2    

In another bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, brown sugar, and pepper.

Step 3    

Pour the dressing over the cabbage mixture and toss to coat. Chill and garnish with the almonds just before serving.

 

Harvest Moon

As we still sweat under this extended summer sun, we begin to bring in the winter harvest and feast our eyes upon the October skies. We honor the harvest moon by keeping going, seeding cover crop, planting for winter, cleaning up fields and bringing in that bounty.

Our last fall share is the last week of October. We are offering a fall extension this year for the month of November! The fall-extension pickup will be at our Titusville location only on Wednesdays from 3:30-6:30. Please let us know if you are interested!

Scenes from the farm: harvest moon over the sunrise, October skies, castelfranco radicchio, Breezy tilling in the greenhouse for winter greens. 

The Share:

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens mix

spinach

head lettuce

kale

napa cabbage

kohlrabi

broccoli

escarole

fennel

radish

radicchio

hakurei turnips

tatsoi

celery root

eggplant 

ground cherries

curly endive

hot peppers

cilantro

dill

parsley

potatoes

winter squash

onions

GRILLED RADICCHIO SALAD WITH SHERRY-MUSTARD DRESSING 

JAMIE PURVIANCE BON APPÉTIT AUGUST 2007

YIELD

Makes 6 servings

INGREDIENTS

    • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for drizzling
    • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
    • 1 tablespoon Sherry wine vinegar
    • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
    • 1 teaspoon honey
    • 6 green onions, trimmed
    • 1 head of romaine lettuce, quartered lengthwise with some core still attached to each piece
    • 1 large head of red leaf lettuce, quartered lengthwise with some core still attached to each piece
    • 1 medium head of radicchio, quartered through core, with some core still attached to each piece

 

PREPARATION

    1. Whisk 3 tablespoons olive oil and next 4 ingredients. Season with salt and pepper.
    2. Arrange green onions, lettuces, and radicchio on baking sheets. Drizzle lightly with oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
    3. Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Grill vegetables until beginning to wilt, 1 minute per side for red leaf lettuce, 1 1/2 minutes per side for romaine, 2 minutes per side for green onions, and 3 minutes per side for radicchio. Transfer vegetables to baking sheets.
    4. Cut cores from all grilled greens. Cut grilled radicchio crosswise into 1-inch-wide strips. Cut grilled lettuces crosswise into 2-inch-wide strips; chop green onions. Place vegetables in large bowl. Drizzle with dressing; toss to coat.

October

"Autumn is the mellower season, and what we lose in flowers we more than gain in fruits." 
-Samuel Butler

As we weed the last of the weeds, we start to look to the long harvest list of the fall. One bed at a time we'll bring in, wash, bag, label and stack for the winter. October is time to bring the bounty. 

Scenes from the farm: perfect spinach beds with farmer shadow, watermelon radish and purple daikon for storage, field scenes, Duma-dog wears a farm hat.

The Share:

arugula 

specialty greens

salad mix

head lettuce

kale

escarole

curly endive

radish

beets

potatoes

kohlrabi

spinach

winter squash

onions

garlic

cilantro

dill 

parsley

sweet peppers

hot peppers

eggplant

cherry tomatoes

baby tatsoi

Recipe of the Week:

Farmer Kat's Famous Endive Salad

Ingredients:

1 head endive

R2R specialty greens mix

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

Black pepper

Optional: apple, radish, hakurei slices for crunch

Dressing:

1 stalk scallion

2 cloves garlic

1 teaspoon fresh ginger

Juice from half a lemon or 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 cup olive oil

Cut a head of endive in half and spread both halves out on a sheet pan with oil and salt and pepper. Roast at 350 degrees for a few minutes or until wilted and a little crispy on the edges. In a large bowl, put a handful of R2R Specialty Greens mix. Cut endive after cooked and add to bowl.

Cut up and add apples, hakurei turnips or radishes for crispy bite. 

For the dressing: Combine olive oil, lemon juice or apple cider vinegar, chopped scallion, chopped garlic, ginger and mustard. Add salt and pepper to taste. 

 

 

Extremes

What a season of extremes. We've gone from cold and wet to hot and dry. The harvest has gone from just enough to way too much. It can be jarring on the system to be constantly figuring out how to deal with too much water and hardly enough crops harvest  straight to setting up the irrigation and looking around the farm trying to figure out what to do with it all. We know this season of extremes is now the new normal and it's up to us to figure out how to adapt. So, we'll keep the sprinkler going day and night and enjoy our bounty.

Scenes from the farm: Breezy with some beautiful napa cabbage, Ember harvesting radishes, the tiniest bell pepper ever, the largest watermelon radishes ever, sweet pepper, tomatoes, and Kim being a dandy-lion. 

The Share:

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens

head lettuce

spinach

watermelon radishes

radish bunches

escarole

napa cabbage

sweet peppers

eggplant

hot peppers

swiss chard

kale

kohlrabi

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

potatoes

onions

garlic

winter squash

Recipe of the week:

ESCAROLE WITH PAN-ROASTED GARLIC AND LEMON

http://www.nytimes.com/2001/01/31/dining/bridging-seasons-with-escarole.html?mcubz=1

Time: 40 minutes

1 large head escarole

8 to 10 cloves garlic, peeled

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Juice of 1/2 lemon, or to taste

1/2 lemon, cut into 6 wedges.

1. Slice escarole crosswise into ribbons about 1 1/2 inches wide. Rinse escarole well, drain, and pat dry with paper towels. Set aside. Halve (lengthwise) any large cloves of garlic; cloves should be of uniform size. Set aside.

2. Place a 12-inch or bigger sauté pan over medium-low heat, and add olive oil. When oil is warmed, reduce heat as low as possible. Add garlic, and toss to coat well with oil. Cook partly covered, stirring occasionally, until garlic is translucent and very tender, about 25 minutes. Do not allow garlic to brown or it will be bitter.

3. When garlic is tender, raise heat to medium-high, and immediately add escarole. Toss escarole until it is well-coated with oil and just begins to wilt, about 1 minute. Add lemon juice to taste, and toss again. Add lemon wedges, and toss until escarole is barely tender and still green, about 2 minutes. Serve immediately.

 

Thoughts of Fall and Winter but feels like Summer

September holds onto summer as we blast through the end of the month. Even though it doesn't feel like it now, we are changing gears to get our farm ready for winter. Please join us for the Winter Share and receive farm produce through the whole year! We have big plans for lots of greens and delicious roots. We'd love to have you. 

http://rootstoriverfarm.com/winter-share/

Meanwhile, fall bounty is upon us! 

Scenes from the farm: fall lettuce and spinach, fall roots, fall fields, fall morning.

The Share:

head lettuce

salad mix

specialty greens

swiss chard

kale

napa cabbage

escarole

spinach

radishes

hakurei turnips

kohlrabi

winter squash

onions

garlic

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

sweet peppers

eggplant

hot peppers

dill 

parsley

ground cherries

AND DON'T FORGET TO COME PICK YOUR PUMPKIN!!

Recipe of the week:

Kale and Napa Cabbage Salad with Greek Yogurt Dressing

Total time

20 mins

Kale and Napa Cabbage Salad with Greek Yogurt Dressing is ribbons of kale and Napa cabbage combined with apples, dried cranberries, green onions, and toasted pecans in a creamy, Greek yogurt dressing. This salad is one great way to eat your greens in a very delicious, different way!

Serves: 6-8 servings

Ingredients

Salad:

  • 1 bunch dinosaur kale, tough stems removed, washed, and cut into thin ribbons
  • 4 ounces Napa cabbage (I used ¼ of a medium head), washed and cut into thin ribbons*
  • 2 green onions, white and green parts, sliced thinly
  • 1 medium apple, cored and cut into ½" chunks (I used Gala)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice**
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ⅓ cup toasted, chopped pecans***

Dressing:

  • ½ cup Greek yogurt (I used Chobani 0% plain)
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1½ tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon lemon juice
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley

Instructions

Prepare the salad:

  1. Place the kale, cabbage, and green onions into a large bowl. Place the apples into a small bowl and add the lemon juice. Stir to combine, then add the apples to the kale mixture with the cranberries and pecans. Toss gently, then set aside.

Prepare the dressing:

  1. Place the Greek yogurt, canola oil, vinegar, honey, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste in a small bowl and whisk until incorporated. Stir in the fresh parsley. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss until the salad is evenly coated with the dressing. Enjoy!

 

Falling Forward

It's another beautiful September day. We are starting to get in our fall and winter crops and we are so excited for the next 6 weeks of the share. It's hard to believe it is already mid-September and we are starting to think about winter. We've brought in an excellent winter squash harvest and our potato harvest is on-going and bountiful. The fall greens are looking great and will start appearing in the share this week. In the next few weeks - weather permitting- we will be turning our attention to cover cropping fields for the winter and bringing in our storage crops. It's the beginning of yet another season. 

Scenes from the farm: bringing in the winter squash with the Princeton University Orientation Group, the first of the potato harvest, winter squash curing (will begin to distribute in a week), harvest day scenes

The Share:

PYO Pumpkins this week! Everyone is welcome to come to the farm in Titusville this week (Thursday 3:30-7, Saturday and Sunday 10-3)* to pick a fall pumpkin!

*if you are a Buckingham member please still pick up your share on Wednesday 

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens

head lettuce

spinach

radishes

hakurei turnips

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

eggplant

sweet peppers

hot peppers

kale 

swiss chard

potatoes

onions

carrots

dill 

parsley

celery

garlic

BURNT CARROTS WITH GOAT CHEESE, PARSLEY, ARUGULA, AND CRISPY GARLIC CHIPS

FRANCIS MALLMANN JULY 2009 SEVEN FIRES: GRILLING THE ARGENTINE WAY

INGREDIENTS

    • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
    • 1/2 cup plus 1 to 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
    • 8 medium carrots (about 1 1/4 pounds), peeled
    • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
    • 1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley, leaves only
    • 2 bunches arugula, trimmed, washed, and dried
    • 6 ounces Bûcheron or similar goat cheese, sliced 1/2 inch thick
    • Crispy Garlic Chips

 

PREPARATION

    1. To make the vinaigrette, pour the vinegar into a small bowl and whisk in 5 tablespoons of the extra virgin olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
    2. Cut the carrots crosswise in half, then cut the halves into thick rough sticks. Toss in a bowl with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, the thyme, and salt and pepper to taste.
    3. Heat a chapa or large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Working in batches if necessary, add the carrots in a single layer and cook, without turning, until they are charred on the bottom and almost burned, 3 to 5 minutes. Turn with a spatula and cook on the other side for 2 to 3 minutes more, adjusting the heat as necessary, until they are crunchy on the outside and tender within. Transfer to a tray. Wipe out the skillet, if using, and set aside.
    4. Combine the parsley and arugula on a large serving platter and toss lightly with half the vinaigrette. Place the carrots on top.
    5. Reheat the chapa or skillet to very high heat and coat with the remaining 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil. Immediately add the slices of goat cheese: be careful—the oil may spatter. As soon as you see the cheese blacken on the bottom, remove the slices with a thin spatula and invert onto the carrots. Toss the garlic chips over the salad and drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette.

 

 

 

 

Feeling Lucky

What a gift these days have been. Although the cool temperatures are not so great for tomato and pepper ripening, our fall crops are loving it. We love it too as we spend our days weeding and thinning the winter storage vegetables. These are the moments when farming is so pleasant it's hard to go inside at the end of the day. 

Our hearts go out to all the people and farms in Houston that have lost everything and we make sure to remember how lucky we are to still have fields full of vegetables. It is so easy to forget that it can all be gone in an instant. One of the advantages of small scale farming is that we can keep learning more resilient ways of doing things. As a small farm we can continue to adapt as our world changes. It's not always easy and it will get harder but we hope to have the fortitude to continue to bend and grow just as our plants do through these uncertain times. 

Scenes from the farm: super lucky spotting from the tractor, sundog in the evening over the farm, clouds over the fall radicchio field, Duma and the crew digging for carrots.

 

The Share:

salad mix

head lettuce

radishes

specialty greens mix

swiss chard

kale

carrots

dandelion

tomatoes 

cherry tomatoes

sweet peppers

eggplant

celery

dill

parsley

hot peppers

beans

onions

DANDELION SALAD WITH WARM BACON DRESSING 

GOURMET APRIL 2002

YIELD

Makes 6 servings

ACTIVE TIME

15 minutes

TOTAL TIME

15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 lb tender dandelion greens, tough stems removed
    • 5 bacon slices
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons cider vinegar
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

 

PREPARATION

    1. Cut greens into 1 1/2-inch lengths and transfer to a large bowl.
    2. Cook bacon in a large heavy skillet until golden and crisp, then transfer to a cutting board, reserving fat in skillet. Finely chop bacon.
    3. Whisk together shallot, vinegar, salt, and pepper in a small bowl, then whisk in 3 tablespoons hot bacon fat. Toss greens with enough warm dressing to coat and sprinkle with bacon. Serve immediately.

Taking Stock

At the end of August, it is time to take stock. Our window for planting new crops outside is rapidly closing so it's a good time to look around to see what the farm will give us for the rest of the season. It's a farmer's obsession to constantly evaluate her crops, so here is a slight indulgence. Our summer crops are leaving us more quickly than usual. Even though the eggplant and peppers look like they might produce forever, our first planting of tomatoes is pretty much finished and although our second planting doesn't look as good as it could, it is starting to ripen and we will definitely have tomatoes for a few weeks to come. The cucumbers and summer squash had the earliest death ever this summer due to disease. However, the winter squash and pumpkin crop looks like it will be stellar if we can store it well enough. Fall roots were seeded a couple weeks late but have germinated well, now it's a matter of keeping up with weeds and hoping for a later frost. The same goes for fall greens and brassicas, the plants are looking as healthy as ever. We have lots of potatoes to dig, onions to clean and garlic to clip. Overall, this challenging season may provide with a fairly bountiful fall. Here's to optimism!

Scenes from the farm: harvest crew, hot peppers, potatoes, Duma barking in the beans, Duma napping in the beans, harvest crew.

The Share:

head lettuce

swiss chard

kale

italian dandelion

celery

parsley

cilantro

dill

beans

potatoes

sweet peppers

hot peppers

eggplant

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

onions

Recipe of the Week:

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced

  • 4 tomatoes (about 650g), seeds removed, finely diced

  • 1 red hot pepper, seeds removed, finely diced

  • 1 yellow hot pepper, seeds removed, finely diced

  • 1 green hot pepper, seeds removed, finely diced

  • 4 tablespoons (1/3 cup) roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus extra to sprinkle

  • 1/4 cup (60ml) olive oil

  • 1 lime, juiced

  • 230g packet corn chips

  • 1 cup (150g) grated mozzarella

METHOD

  • Step 1

    To make the fresh salsa, combine the spring onion, tomato, capsicum, parsley, olive oil and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Step 2

    Preheat a grill to medium. Spread the corn chips over a large ovenproof plate. Spoon over the fresh salsa and sprinkle with the grated mozzarella. Grill the nachos for 1-2 minutes until the mozzarella is golden and bubbling. Sprinkle with the extra chopped parsley and serve.

 

 

Eclipse

Yesterday, along with the rest of the country we watched the cosmic movements of the moon traveling in front of the sun. We weeded crops in-between cloud cover while my mother watched from the back of the pickup truck, yelling to tell us when to grab our glasses and look. It was magical and energizing to see so clearly the unstoppable movement of the solar system. We traded views of the universe with views of the ground. Macro to micro and back again. The bigness and smallness of the world in just 2 glances. How lucky we are to have witnessed, be humbled and awed by such an event reminding us that we are small and insignificant but that our little spot on the ground is still a part of the earth spinning through the atmosphere.

The Share:

salad mix

swiss chard

italian dandelion

dill

cilantro

parsley

hot peppers

sweet peppers

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

eggplant

beans

melon

celery

potatoes

beets

onions

 

Recipe of the Week:

Potato Salad with Parsley Pesto

Ingredients:

Summer potato salad

2 lb potatoes

1 lb green beans

Salt and pepper

Parsley pesto: 

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 cups packed, stemmed Italian parsley
  • Course salt
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, or to taste
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

In a food processor place the garlic, parsley, pinch salt, walnuts, and cheese. Process until they form a paste. Gradually blend in olive oil, taste adjust your seasoning if necessary. 

2 small garlic cloves

1 tablespoon capers without the brine

Very large two handfuls of flat leaf parsley (or 2 bunches that you buy at the store)

1 teaspoon coarse salt

2/3 cup olive oil

 

Directions:

Summer potato salad

Steam the potatoes until just tender. They have to be cooked through but not mushy (see note above)

Steam the beans until crisp tender yet still bright green. Do not cover the pot when cooking the beans as they can lose their colour.

When the potatoes are cooked through drain and allow to cool.

Cut the potatoes in half or quarters, depending on their size, and peel if you wish. The skin should peel off easily.

When the beans are ready plunge them into cold water to stop the cooking.

Cut the beans into smaller pieces.

To make the pesto place all ingredients in a food processor and process until it reaches the consistency of pesto.

 

 

Summer, do your worst!

Feeling rather uninspired on yet another rainy day, I thought I'd let one of my favorite poets express a rather accurate feeling of August. 

August - Poem by Dorothy Parker

When my eyes are weeds,
And my lips are petals, spinning
Down the wind that has beginning
Where the crumpled beeches start
In a fringe of salty reeds;
When my arms are elder-bushes,
And the rangy lilac pushes
Upward, upward through my heart;

Summer, do your worst!
Light your tinsel moon, and call on
Your performing stars to fall on
Headlong through your paper sky;
Nevermore shall I be cursed
By a flushed and amorous slattern,
With her dusty laces' pattern
Trailing, as she straggles by.

Scenes from the farm: planting in between the rain storms, picking beans, Duma steals a shishito and then feels guilty, obligatory tomato picture, cloudy view from atop the hill. 

The share:

salad mix

head lettuce

swiss chard

beans

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

celery

sweet peppers 

hot peppers

eggplant

parsley

dill 

cilantro

beets

onions

cucumbers

melon!

Recipe of the week:

Tricolor Sweet Pepper Relish Recipe

SAUCED 

Sauces, dips, dressings, and condiments from around the world.

JOSHUA BOUSEL

Ingredients

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 large red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into 1/8-inch dice
  • 1 large yellow bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into 1/8-inch dice
  • 1 large orange bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into 1/8-inch dice
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seeds

Directions

Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a small saucepan over high heat. Removed from heat, add in diced peppers and let steep for 5 minutes. Strain peppers through fine mesh strainer.

Add in vinegar, sugar, mustard seeds, salt, and celery seeds into now empty saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar..

Add peppers and simmer, stirring occasionally, until little liquid remains, 15-20 minutes. Transfer relish to a jar, let cool slightly, then cover and place in refrigerator until completely chilled. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Rain

While I watch it continue to pour over the farm I am struck by the duality of a rainy season. Rain can be such a gift, without it our wells run dry and the fauna and flora of our ecosystems suffer. The forests are lush and the river is healthy and high. But too much rain on a small farm can also be devastating. With rain comes disease which is mostly impossible to fight organically. It makes it impossible to work soil so that we cannot weed or plant with our tractors. It makes the fruit of farm ripen slowly and crack, and fills them with more water than sugar. While every season comes with it's own challenges, a rainy season is hard because it requires so much waiting and seeing. Seeing how long the plants will survive with disease, waiting for the soil to dry out to plant our successions, waiting and watching the weeds grow. Waiting and seeing is hard for farmers. But wait and see and hope we must. 

Scenes from the farm: A sunny moment at the PYO garden, planting into the evening before another day of rain, diseased tomato plants, Duma helping plant, a small bounty of tomatoes despite the blight (coming your way this week).

The Share:

salad mix

head lettuce

swiss chard

string beans

summer squash

celery

sweet peppers

hot peppers

eggplant

parsley

basil

italian dandelion

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

carrots

beets

tropea onions

Recipe of the week:

Tomato, Sweet Onion, and Celery Salad

from Martha Stewart

INGREDIENTS 

  • 2 to 3 ripe plum tomatoes, sliced crosswise 1/8 inch thick 
  • 1 sweet onion, preferably Vidalia, sliced crosswise 1/8 inch thick 
  • 3 celery stalks with leaves, thinly sliced crosswise 
  • 2 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh basil 
  • 1/4 cup olive oil 
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream 
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper 

DIRECTIONS 

  1. Arrange tomatoes, onion, celery, and celery leaves on a serving plate. Sprinkle with basil; set aside. 

  2. In a small bowl, whisk together oil, vinegar, and cream; whisk to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle over salad; serve immediately. 

 

August

It's here already and it sure feels like it. August is the last month of summer for most, as a kid I remember how time seemed like it used to speed up as the days of summer began to end and the beginning of school loomed close. I would look around and realize with horror all the work books I was supposed to have completed and the book list that seemed so short in June, seemed impossibly long in the reality of August. How easy to procrastinate when school was so distant! Now time moves a little differently. It moves so fast that procrastinating is not an option. Each task layered on top of the others, all with priority stars next to them. Never a right or wrong choice but always hard to decide. Farming in August is more like a dance with fate and time and weather all rolled into one. I don't miss those back to school jitters and our waltz with August always keeps us on our toes. 

Scenes from the farm: Finally back on the lettuce planting train, Duma finding some shade, rudbeckia in the PYO garden, and the squash patch

The share:

salad mix

head lettuce

swiss chard

summer squash

cucumbers

cherry tomatoes

heirloom tomatoes

basil

parsley

beans

potatoes

beets 

carrots

eggplant

sweet peppers

hot peppers

spring onions

Recipe of the Week:

RATATOUILLE 

GOURMET JUNE 1991

YIELD

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 onion, sliced thin
    • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • 5 tablespoons olive oil
    • a 3/4-pound eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 3 cups)
    • 1 small zucchini, scrubbed, quartered lengthwise, and cut into thin slices
    • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
    • 3/4 pound small ripe tomatoes, chopped coarse (about 1 1/4 cups)
    • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled
    • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
    • 1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
    • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup shredded fresh basil leaves

 

PREPARATION

    1. In a large skillet cook the onion and the garlic in 2 tablespoons of the oil over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil and heat it over moderately high heat until it is hot but not smoking. Add the eggplant and cook the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes, or until the eggplant is softened. Stir in the zucchini and the bell pepper and cook the mixture over the moderate heat, stirring occasionally, for 12 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and cook the mixture, stirring occassionaly, for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the oregano, the thyme, the coriander, the fennel seeds, the salt, and pepper to taste and cook the mixture, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the basil and combine the mixture well. The ratatouille may be made 1 day in advance, kept covered and chilled, and reheated before serving.

 

 

 

Challenges and Memory

With every new season come challenges we can predict and most that we can't. It is the challenges that are a complete surprise that are the toughest. When the seed to one variety of carrots is unviable and bolts before it grows into a carrot. We can't tell before we plant, weed, and water this seed that it won't grow into a carrot. We plant our first three spring successions not knowing and now we have three beds of bolted carrots and unable to fill our harvest goals. We have three out four tractors not working and greenhouse of plants to put in the ground for the fall. It's a little nutty to say the least. But I know from experience that we'll get through the season, these challenges will fade into the next ones and by next time this year we will have only vague notions of what the troubles used to be. Sitting here now, I cannot recall the challenges of last July, only that I knew of course that there were some. 

Scenes from the farm: Cloud over tomatoes, garlic drying in the barn, the weeding hut, eggplant and shishitos.

The share:

swiss chard

cabbage

dandelion

hakurei turnips

fennel

cabbage

spring onions

fresh shallots

sweet peppers

shishito peppers

hot peppers

summer squash

cucumbers

eggplant

cherry tomatoes

new potatoes

parsley

basil

For Sale: Organic Blueberries (at a discount)

Recipe of the Week:

SAUTÉED SHISHITO PEPPERS: SUMMER'S BEST NEW BITE 

DEBORAH MADISON MARCH 2013 VEGETABLE LITERACY

PREPARATION

    1. Here's what you do. Heat a little olive oil in a wide sauté pan until it is good and hot but not smoking. Add the peppers and cook them over medium, tossing and turning them frequently until they blister. They shouldn't char except in places. Don't rush. It takes 10 to 15 minutes to cook a panful of peppers. When they're done, toss them with sea salt and add a squeeze of fresh lemon. Slide the peppers into a bowl and serve them hot. You pick them up by the stem end and eat the whole thing, minus the stem, that is.
    2. You can probably do fancier, cheffy things with them, but they're terrific like this. For variety, I sometimes use a little toasted sesame oil instead of olive oil and finish them with togarashi. If you have leftovers, an unlikely event in my experience, chop off the stems and put the peppers in an omelet or some scrambled eggs.

The Summer Flash

July is flying by in a flash. We're starting to feast on the fruits of summer. Cucumber salads, grilled summer squash, and the bites of our first cherry tomatoes! We race through the days harvesting, weeding and planting and we're so excited for the bounty of summer to really begin. We hope you're enjoying the summer weather and your vegetables!

Scenes from the farm: harvesting peppers in a sea of green, summer squash and onions boxed up and ready to go, Breezy walking down the pathways of our first-ever-early-weeded-parsnips, a greenhouse full of plants ready to be planted. 

The Share:

head lettuce

salad mix

swiss chard

cucumbers

summer squash

spring onions

green peppers

eggplant!

cherry tomatoes!

kohlrabi

cabbage

hakurei turnips

beets

carrots

basil

parsley

PYO Garden will be OPEN at our Titusville location ( 67 Pleasant Valley Rd, Titusville NJ) for ALL members on Thursdays 3:30 - 7pm and on the Saturdays and Sundays from 10am - 3pm. Flowers, herbs, cherry tomatoes, tomatillos, and shishitos are ready for picking. Flowers and herbs do not count towards your share items but please limit to 16 stems per week in order to have enough for everyone. And as many herb sprigs as you can use.  1 pint of tomatoes, peppers and tomatillos count as 1 item of your share for the week. 

Come enjoy the farm!

Recipe of the Week:

Mark’s Kosher Pickles, the Right Way

http://markbittman.com/fridge-pickles-your-way/

Makes: About 60 pickle quarters or 30 halves

Time: 1 to 2 days 

From Mark’s headnote: “No vinegar here, so these don’t keep for very long (about a week), but they’ll be eaten quickly enough that you’ll never see one go bad. These are my favorite pickles and those of everyone for whom I’ve made them too.” All true of course, but if you miss your vinegar, you can always add it to the brine after curing or sprinkle a few drops on the pickles directly right before eating. That gives you better control over the acidity anyway. 

1/3 cup kosher salt

1 cup boiling water

2 pounds Kirby cucumbers, washed (scrub if spiny) and halved or quartered lengthwise

At least 5 cloves garlic, crushed

1 large bunch fresh dill, preferably with flowers, or 2 tablespoons dried dill and 1 teaspoon dill seeds, or 1 tablespoon coriander seeds 

1. Combine the salt and boiling water in a large bowl; stir to dissolve the salt. Add a handful of ice cubes to cool the mixture, then add all the remaining ingredients. 

2. Add cold water to cover. Use a plate slightly smaller than the diameter of the bowl and a small weight to keep the cucumbers immersed. Set aside at room temperature. 

3. Begin sampling the cucumbers after 4 hours if you’ve quartered them, 8 hours if you’ve halved them. In either case, it will probably take from 12 to 24 or even 48 hours for them to taste pickly enough to suit your taste. 

4. When they are ready, refrigerate them, still in the brine. The pickles will continue to ferment as they sit, more quickly at room temperature, more slowly in the refrigerator. They will keep well for up to a week.

 

July

Oh July. It's that heavy month. The sun seems stronger, the air thicker. The plants are full of fruit to be picked, the flowers full of blooms and the fields must be tilled for fall plantings. We harvest the garlic and give the farm over to the weeds. The spring crops get mowed and cleaned up and we transition into yet another season. We give the leafy greens a break through the next hot months and dive into the heat loving fruits of the farm. Juicy peppers, cucumbers, and onions, tomatoes, eggplant and summer squash. We'll begin to dig potatoes and harvest the roots that have come to size. Our broad hats will cover our faces from the sun as we bend towards the earth to harvest the summer. 

Scenes from the farm: fresh squash, cippolini onions, tomatoes growing, plowing for fall crops, garlic harvest. 

The Share:

head lettuce

arugula

specialty greens

salad mix

hakurei turnips

beets

carrots

fennel

summer squash

cucumbers

spring onions

escarole

swiss chard

cabbage

kohlrabi

parsley

dill

cilantro

green peppers

PYO Garden will be OPEN at our Titusville location ( 67 Pleasant Valley Rd, Titusville NJ) for ALL members on Thursdays 3:30 - 7pm and on the Saturdays and Sundays from 10am - 3pm. Flowers and herbs are ready for picking! Flowers and herbs do not count towards your share items but please limit to 16 stems per week in order to have enough for everyone. And as many herb sprigs as you can use. More PYO crops will be coming in through out the season. Come enjoy the farm!

 

 

Recipe of the week:

Onions, Tropea Style

Serves 6 to 8

http://www.ciaoitalia.com/seasons/season-2200/episode-2207/onions-tropea-style

Ingredients

2 tablespoons Filippo Berio extra virgin olive oil

2 pounds red onions, peeled and coarsely chopped

2 green bell peppers, coarsely chopped

1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes 

1 1/2 pounds plum tomatoes, peeled and diced

Small handful of fresh basil torn into pieces

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Heat the oil in a large heavy duty sauté pan and cook the onions and peppers until they soften. Add the pepper flakes and cook 1 minute longer. Add the tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper to taste. 
 
Simmer, covered, for 45 minutes. 
 
Serve with bread.

This recipe is featured on show 2207 – Gourmet Vegetables – Le Verdure del Buongustaio.