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.

 

 

Farmer Holidays

It always catches me off guard when someone asks me what I'm doing for a summer holiday or when my employees ask if we have off. Well, of course not. Our job is to do 12 months worth of work into 8 months. There are no time for holidays. We work hard to schedule weekly time off and a couple 3 day weekends for the crew throughout the summer. The American "summer vacations" were built around an agricultural schedule, so that kids could work on the farm in the summers. What could be more American than farming on the Fourth of July? That being said, we'll be ending a bit early, sitting around a fire (while burning some pest-infested seedling from the greenhouse) and eating lots of things off the grill, just like the forefathers would want us to.

Scenes from the Farm: The new pumpkin pick your own patch from 2 angles, the farm dog pea-brigade (they always show up begging when we're picking peas), Duma sits next to Kat's sweet note on the barn floor.

The Share:

head lettuce

spring onions

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens

kale 

swiss chard

kohlrabi

cabbage

radicchio

escarole

fennel

beets

carrots

hakurei turnips

summer squash

cucumbers

parsley

dill 

cilantro

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:

Escarole with Onion and Lemon

Enjoy this saute as a side with roasted salmon or seared steak.

http://www.marthastewart.com/313487/escarole-with-onion-and-lemon

INGREDIENTS 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil 
  • 1 small red onion, diced small 
  • 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes 
  • 1 head escarole, cored and chopped 
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper 
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon 

DIRECTIONS 

  1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high. Add red onion and red-pepper flakes; cook until onion softens, 3 minutes. Add escarole. Cook until wilted, 3 minutes. Season with salt, pepper, and lemon juice. 

 

 

Summer Feels

News from the farm:

Well, it's the first week of summer and we have experienced blazing hot temperatures, huge thunderstorms, a cooler failure, 2 broken tractors and some dramatic weed growth. Meanwhile, we have planted our second successions of summer squash, cucumbers, beans, tomatoes, peppers and eggplant. We're in the middle of planting winter squash and the pumpkin patch. We're filling the greenhouse with seedlings for fall plantings and summer squash and cucumbers are about to come in. Farming does not allow for reflection or self-pity, it requires a constant movement forward. With every failure there is a necessary step to take beyond the present. While it is heartbreaking to lose a bed of carrots to the weeds or not have time to cover the melons, the sense of urgency simply propels us further into the season with no time to dwell on what has past or even what is happening. As farmers, we live for the constant hope of the future. 

Scenes from the farm:

The Share:

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens

head lettuce

radicchio

escarole

fennel

broccoli

kale 

swiss chard

beets

sugar snap peas

kohlrabi

hakurei turnips

summer squash

parsley

dill 

cilantro

napa cabbage

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 12 stems per week in order to have enough for everyone. More PYO crops will be coming in through out the season. Come enjoy the farm!

Recipe of the week:

SPICY NAPA CABBAGE SLAW WITH CILANTRO DRESSING 

RUTH COUSINEAU GOURMET AUGUST 2008

YIELD

Makes 4 servings

ACTIVE TIME

15 min

TOTAL TIME

25 min

INGREDIENTS

    • 1/4 cup rice vinegar (not seasoned)
    • 2 teaspoons sugar
    • 1 teaspoon grated peeled ginger
    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
    • 1 fresh serrano chile, finely chopped, with seeds
    • 1 small head Napa cabbage (1 1/2 pounds), cored and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices
    • 1 bunch scallions, sliced
    • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro

 

 

 

 

Solstice

News from the Farm:

The summer solstice always has a way of surprising us. It's already the end of June? Already the days are slowly going to take us back to winter? But we just got here! But it also marks the beginning of our busiest season and no doubt the weeks and months will go faster from here on out. Our summer crops are looking good, enjoying this heat and these thunderstorms. We are starting to seed crops for fall and the heavy picking season is almost upon us. We hope you are enjoying the sunshine and the veggies of the season. It is the best salad time of the year.

Scenes from the Farm: 

The Share:

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens mix

head lettuce

napa cabbage

broccoli

kale

swiss chard

chioggia beets!

hakurei turnips

escarole

frisee

radicchio

fennel

sugar snap peas

snow peas

kohlrabi

parsley

Recipe of the week:

FENNEL AND PARSLEY SALAD 

DONNA HAY OCTOBER 2007 INSTANT ENTERTAINING THE ECCO PRESS

INGREDIENTS

    • 4 baby fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced
    • 2 cups flat-leaf parsley leaves
    • 1/4 cup (2 fluid ounces) orange juice
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 tablespoon seeded mustard
    • Sea salt and cracked black pepper

PREPARATION

    1. Place the fennel and parsley in a serving bowl and toss to combine. Place the orange juice, oil, mustard, salt, and pepper in a bowl and whisk to combine. Pour over the salad and serve

 

In the heat of June

News from the Farm:

Our fields have dried out and it feels like ages ago that we were bundled up in sweaters and rain gear even though it really was only last week. What a difference a bit of sun can make. Our veggies are growing well through the heat and so are the weeds of course. We're racing to get our late summer fields prepped and ready for planting before the next rains and our full harvest schedule is just getting into full swing. It's starting to feel like summer.

We hope you enjoyed last weeks share! We're looking forward to more and more bounty in the coming weeks!

Scenes from the Farm:

The Share:

salad mix

arugula

specialty greens mix

head lettuce

radicchio

curly endive

escarole

hakurei turnips

kohlrabi

napa cabbage

kale

swiss chard

fennel

snap peas

snow peas

Recipe of the Week:

STRAWBERRY, RADICCHIO AND ENDIVE SALAD 

SUBMITTED BY SAVIO UPDATED: SEPTEMBER 28, 2015

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 small head radicchio
    • 1 head endive, washed trimmed and sliced
    • 1 pint strawberries, hulled, stemmed and quartered
    • 1/4 cup walnuts
    • Dressing:
    • 1 shallot, minced
    • 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
    • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
    • 2 tbsp canola oil
    • 3 tbsp olive oil
    • Fresh pepper to taste

PREPARATION

  1. spin greens dry. Combine with strawberries and toss to mix. Combine all ingredients for dressing in a food processor and pulse til smooth. Adjust seasoning. Toss greens with half the dressing and add more as neecessary. Sprinkle with walnuts. Reserve any leftover dressing.

The First Pickup of 2017!

News from the Farm:

Greetings from the soggy fields of Roots to River!! Despite the rain we have some beautiful produce to harvest for you this week. The spring has been full of its usual ups and downs but this year's farm crew has already proven to be smart, hard working and good natured through it all! (meet the farm crew on the people page of our website). We are getting used to our expanded farm and have begun to figure out how to take advantage of new equipment and infrastructure while maintaining all our fields with a constant goal of sustainability. Our organic certification has been renewed on both our properties and we are experimenting with contour tillage, beneficial insect applications and new cultivation methods with great success. 

We are more than excited to get the CSA season going! CSA pickups are our favorite time of the week when we can present our members with the bounty we work so hard to produce!

Pickups in Buckingham will begin tomorrow for weekly share members and Group A member from 3:30pm to 7pm on the Buckingham Friends Meetinghouse Porch. Pickups at Gravity Hill will begin on Thursday for weekly share members and Group A from 3:30pm to 7pm in the market building at the top of the hill. Don't forget to bring your own bags!

Scenes from the farm:

In the share this week:

salad mix

head lettuce

arugula 

specialty greens mix

mustard greens

kohlrabi

carrots

broccoli raab

radishes

hakurei turnips

kale

napa cabbage

peas

garlic scapes

escarole

 

Recipe of the Week:

Pan-Fried Garlic Scape Ribbons and Broccoli Rabe

This stunning vegetarian dish is a deconstructed spin on the flavors of pesto - surprisingly simple for how fancy it looks.

Author: Carly DeFilippo

Recipe Type: Appetiser, Entree or Side

Serves: 2-4

Ingredients

  • 8-10 garlic scapes
  • 1 bunch broccoli rabe
  • ⅚ anchovies
  • ⅓ cup chopped walnuts
  • olive oil
  • grated cheese (optional)
  • lemon (optional)

Instructions

  1. Wash garlic scapes and cut them in half. Using a vegetable peeler, shred the scapes into long ribbons.
  2. Wash broccoli rabe and cut into small pieces. (Only use the parts of the stalk that have leaves/florets).
  3. Heat olive oil in a large pan or wok. Add anchovies to pan.
  4. When oil is hot, add broccoli rabe and garlic scapes. Stir periodically.
  5. After about a minute, toss in the chopped walnuts.
  6. Cook until greens are tender, but the scapes should still be al dente.
  7. Remove from heat, dress with grated parmesan and lemon juice to taste.

Notes:

If you would like a heartier meal, you can use this dish as a topping for pasta.   

 

 

The End of the Winter

We are sad that our official Winter Share is coming to a close. The transition to spring feels very real with these tropical temperatures and dried out fields. We hope you've enjoyed the winter share this year, we feel proud of the roots and greens and canned goods we've been able include in the share. It is such a joy for us to be able to provide healthy veggies for our community members through the winter. You've received an average of a 25% discount on all the produce and products in the share this season! 

We've spent the last few weeks keeping up with warming temps, finishing our Organic Certification annual update, buying new equipment and cleaning up for spring farming! We're ready for the season ahead! Please sign up for our Summer/Fall CSA if you haven't already. We rely on members like you to keep up going through the season and we are so lucky to have you as part of our farm community!

Scenes from the farm: the most beautiful lettuce heads, walks on the farm, working on organic certification as the sun sets over the farm, the greenhouse looking lush, and farmer Malaika featured in an amazing new cookbook all about alliums called "Onions etcetera".

The Share:

salad mix

kale

choice of baby kale or arugula

lettuce

garlic

cilantro 

Choice of sauerkraut or kimchi

Choice of canned good: sauce, puree, ketchup, tomato butter

Choice of 8 pounds roots

Recipe of the week:

Carrot fritters

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons plain flour

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed

  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced

  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten

  • 3 carrots, peeled

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 2 green onions, extra, thinly sliced lengthways

  • reduced-fat Greek-style natural yoghurt and lime wedges, to serve

METHOD

  • Step 1

    Combine flour, cumin, garlic, parsley and green onions in a large bowl. Add eggs. Mix well to combine.

  • Step 2

    Coarsely grate carrots. Use your hands to squeeze out as much excess moisture as possible. Add carrots to egg mixture. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Step 3

    Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add 1/4 cup of batter per fritter to frying pan. Cook fritters in batches for 3 minutes each side, or until golden and cooked through.

  • Step 4

    Place 2 fritters onto each serving plate. Top with extra green onions. Season with salt and pepper. Serve warm with yoghurt and lime wedges.

 

From afar

This week's newsletter is being written from the top of a hill on the island of Guadaloupe. Even farmers deserve a vacation, right? With limited internet, we'll keep it simple.

Here's the share this week:

The Share:

salad mix

kale

arugula or baby kale

head lettuce

cabbage

dried hot chilies (great for soups!)

Choice of sauerkraut or kimchi

Choice of roots (8lbs)

Choice of canned goods: ketchup, tomato sauce, tomato puree, salsa, tomato butter

Seed Order

The seed order is done! Crop planning and the great tetris that is planning a farm season commences. Ordering seed, equipment and planning for a small diversified farm is no small feat, it takes about 22 different spreadsheets and weeks of math problems to figure out what crops to grow when, how many and where to put them all. Each type of vegetable, of which we grow hundreds, all have different rates of seeding, prices, days to harvest, nutrient needs and space required. It is a mind-bending task to get it all to fit into one realistic picture. A mentor of mine once told me that CSA farms would not exist without Excel. She is not wrong. 

The stats:

We are growing 255 different varieties of vegetables this year, 9 types of potatoes, 2 varieties of garlic, 15 kinds of flowers, 17 types of herbs, and 36 varieties of transplants for spring plant sales.

It's going to be amazing.

Scenes from the farm: seed order command central; what Duma does during crop planning; Phoenyx doing some winter work- trimming the fence; sunset over Gravity Hill after working on contour field layouts

The Share:

salad mix

spinach

head lettuce

cabbage

dry beans

parsley

cilantro

Choice of roots (7lbs): carrots, beets, potatoes, celery root, rutabaga, radish, turnip

Choice of canned goods (2): ketchup, tomato sauce, tomato puree, salsa, tomato butter

Recipe of the week:

Orecchiette with Carrot-Hazelnut Pesto

INGREDIENTS 

  • 6 small carrots (8 ounces), peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup toasted whole hazelnuts, plus 2 tablespoons, chopped, for serving
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano (2 ounces)Coarse salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling1 pound orecchiette

DIRECTIONS 

  1. Combine carrots, whole hazelnuts, garlic, and cheese in the bowl of a food processor; season with salt. Pulse until coarsely pureed. With motor running, slowly add oil, processing to a paste. 

  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add salt. Cook pasta until al dente, according to package instructions. Drain; transfer pasta to a bowl. Add pesto and toss to coat evenly. Drizzle with oil, top with chopped hazelnuts, and serve immediately.

The Expansion

We are very excited to finally announce our plans for next season! We are expanding our farming operation to the farm formerly known as Gravity Hill Organic Farm in Titusville NJ where we now operate a weekend market and our Winter CSA Pickup. The farm is about 8 tillable acres with lots of farm infrastructure that will help us do what we do better. We will be continuing to grow at our current farm in Solebury but are very excited to utilize the indoor growing spaces, new fields for organic rotation and the On-Farm Market and CSA building at the Gravity Hill property. Our intention is not to grow into a huge farm but be able to take advantage of the opportunities at Gravity Hill to become more efficient at growing high quality veggies while also providing a public place for our community to enjoy the farm. 

We are very excited and a little daunted by our new project, but we have an experienced and enthusiastic crew lined up for the season and many others on board to help make it a success! It will truly be a village effort and we hope you'll join us!

If you haven't already signed up, check out the CSA options for the summer at http://rootstoriverfarm.com/csa-info-and-share-options/

We will be offering a weekday Pickups at Buckingham PA and Titusville NJ and weekend market pickups at Doylestown PA and Titusville NJ. All shares are free-choice and all members will have access to the Pick-Your-Own gardens at Gravity Hill.

Scenes from the farm: snowy harvest days, Winter craft projects by the crew, greens picked fresh for the shares

The share:

salad mix

judy's kale

collard green hearts

spinach

parsley

napa cabbage

head lettuce

onions

garlic

Choice of roots (7 pounds): carrots, potatoes, beets, celery root, turnips, rutabaga

Choice of canned goods: tomato sauce, puree, ketchup, salsa or butter

 

Recipe of the day:

PENNE WITH LEMON AND ROOT VEGETABLES 

BON APPÉTIT TEST KITCHEN BON APPÉTIT DECEMBER 2009

YIELD

Makes 4 main-course servings

ACTIVE TIME

50 minutes

TOTAL TIME

50 minutes

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    • 5 cups 2 x 1/2 x 1/2-inch sticks peeled assorted root vegetables (such as parsnips, carrots, celery root, and golden beets)
    • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled
    • 2 celery stalks, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide pieces, plus 6 tablespoons chopped celery leaves, divided
    • 8 ounces penne rigate or whole grain penne
    • 3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
    • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
    • 1/4 teaspoon (scant) ground nutmeg

PREPARATION

    1. Heat extra-virgin olive oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add assorted root vegetables; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté 9 minutes. Using garlic press, squeeze in garlic. Add sliced celery stalks. Sauté vegetables 1 minute longer. Add 1 cup water. Cover and simmer until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally, 12 to 15 minutes.
    2. Meanwhile, cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid.
    3. Add pasta to vegetables in skillet. Add 3/4 cup reserved cooking liquid, finely grated Parmesan cheese, finely grated lemon peel, ground nutmeg, and 4 tablespoons chopped celery leaves. Toss until heated through and sauce coats pasta, adding more cooking liquid if pasta is dry, about 2 minutes. Season pasta to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer pasta to bowls; sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons chopped celery leaves.

 

Breathing Room

People always ask what farmers do in the winter. I'll tell you: we breathe a little. In between website design, crop planning, newsletter writing, accounting and catching up with friends and family, I love the couple hours a day when I have to take the dog for a walk or vent the tunnels at the farm. It's such a wonderful chance to truly appreciate the beauty that is the place where I live and work. A chance to slow down, breath and look around. I have time to notice the tree that has fallen in the woods since I was last there or that the grass is a different variety on the top of the hill than it is on the bottom. In the growing season, when I notice things on the farm, those things go straight on to the to-do list. An automatic categorization of tasks based on how the environment has changed. Now all I have to do is walk and look and breathe and notice with wonder. I'll think about the to-do list when I go back inside. 

The Share:

Choice of collard greens or kale

Salad mix

Spinach

onions

garlic

napa cabbage

winter squash

Choice of canned good: tomato sauce, salsa, puree, ketchup or tomato butter

Choice of roots (6 pounds): potatoes, beets, carrots, turnips, celery root, watermelon radishes, rutabaga

Recipe of the week:

Rosy Beet/ Napa Cabbage Slaw


From Global Cookbook. Serves 4-6.
6 c. Thinly sliced Napa cabbage leaves
1 1/2 c. Minced red onion
2 med Beets, grated
1 c. Minced fresh parsley
1/4 c. Red wine vinegar
1/2 c. Water
2 Tbsp. Brown sugar
1/2 tsp Salt
1/3 c. Minced fresh dill leaf
3 Tbsp. Minced fresh chives
1/2 c. Low fat lowfat sour cream
Salt and freshly ground pepper

 

Combine vegetables and parsley in a large bowl. In a saucepan, combine vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring till sugar is dissolved. Pour over vegetables and toss. Add in dill and chives and fold in well. Cover and let marinate overnight. Stir well once or twice. Just before serving, drain off excess liquid. Stir in lowfat sour cream and add in salt and pepper to taste.

  

Intricacies of Winter Growing

Vegetable farming in the winter is a whole other way of farming then in the main season. In the summer, things are constantly changing, moving, growing, dying, and fruiting. It's our job to keep up with it all. In the winter we have a stock that is set, the roots are in and the greens are planted. Now it is our job to keep them stable. We have to make constant adjustments to their environments in order to keep what we have stay their best. The greens have to be covered every night and the nighttime temperature dictates how many layers they get. They must be uncovered every morning and the houses opened to let air in. The roots must be humid but not wet. They must be cold but not freezing. The squash and sweet potatoes have to stay warm and dry but not too dry. The onions and garlic, cold and dry. Winter vegetable farming is much more akin keeping livestock; instead of growing plants, we are trying to keep them alive. It's an interesting challenge, one that we get better at every year.

In the share this week:

Choice of bagged greens (2 bags): salad mix, spinach, specialty greens

Choice of bunched greens (2 bags): kale, collards, swiss chard, mustard greens

fennel

pan di zucchero

onions

garlic

winter squash

tatsoi

Choice of roots (6 pounds): potatoes (2 kinds), beets, carrots, turnips, watermelon radishes

Recipe of the Week:

SPICED WINTER SQUASH WITH FENNEL 

BON APPÉTIT OCTOBER 2004

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 1 1/2-pound butternut squash, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, halved crosswise, then cut lengthwise into 3/4-inch-wide wedges
    • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed, cut lengthwise into 1-inch-wide wedges
    • 1 large onion, root end left intact, then cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-wide wedges
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
    • (farmer note: i would also add the pan di zucccero to this as well)

PREPARATION

    1. Position rack in bottom third of oven and preheat to 450°F. Combine squash, fennel, and onion on heavy large rimmed baking sheet. Add oil and toss to coat. Mix all spices in small bowl to blend. Sprinkle spice mixture over vegetables and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and generous amount of pepper. Roast until vegetables are tender and browned, turning once, about 45 minutes. Transfer to shallow dish and serve.

 

 

The Winter Share

The winter share is a curation of vegetables and products that starts all the way back in March when we seeded our first crops in the greenhouse. Some of the products that we will be giving out in the next few months are vegetables like onions and celery root that we took care of for 9 months, some of these vegetables have lived through every season of the year. It's amazing to think about the process that goes into our winter share offerings. Some have been grown, weeded, harvested, cured and cleaned; some have been grown, pruned, picked, cooked, and canned; some harvested and dried; some picked, chopped and brined and some just pulled from the ground, washed and bagged. Every crop has it's own story and for the winter we try to get every vegetable to its most stable state in order to hang on to it all season. The winter share is a science all it's own, we hope you enjoy it. 

Scenes from the farm and veggies coming your way:

What's in the share:

Choice of greens: salad mix, arugula, specialty greens mix, spinach

Choice of kale or swiss chard bunches

Fennel

Broccoli

Pan di Zucchero

Tatsoi

Parsley

Pea shoots

Winter squash

Onions

Garlic

Choice of roots (5 pounds): carrots, beets, turnips, rutabaga, kohlrabi, watermelon radishes

 

Recipe of the week:

Tatsoi & Pan di Zucchero Pasta with Preserved Lemon and Toasted Almonds from Julia


I wanted to make a quick dinner for a quick and relaxed weeknight just-get-it-done but sit down together meal. I looked in the fridge and cupboard, and threw this together with the garlic I cleverly purchased earlier in the day. 

1 head pan di zucchero (you could use escarole or radicchio or another cooking green here), cleaned and sliced into ribbons then chopped a bit some more
1 pound tatsoi: stemmed and washed well. I removed the stems and washed up the green leaves with the bits of stem that remained, it was pretty quick thanks to my salad spinner
4 large cloves of garlic, or to taste
1 onion (optional, I meant to add this and didn't...)
2-4 tablespoons olive oil
4 Tablespoons (approx) chopped preserved lemons (you could use capers and or kalamata olives if no preserved lemons are lurking in your fridge)
1 bunch Italian parsley washed and chopped (I actually bought a bunch of this, then forgot!)
Toasted almonds, roughly chopped
1 can great quality tuna or salmon in oil, flaked, optional (I didn't add this but I pondered it)
3/4 pound pasta or a whole pound (I used penne, could use other shapes including spaghetti), cooked
S & P to taste
1-2 lemons quartered to serve for squeezing to taste at the table
a grating cheese to serve on the table with the grater (I like to make the eaters do some of the work, and I don't usually add cheese to my dish)

Saute the onion in 2-4 tablespoons oil until soft. Add all the cooking greens plus the garlic, cook until well wilted and garlic is soft.

Toss the hot wilted greens/onion mix with the preserved lemons & pasta. Add tuna if using, and toss the whole thing in a large bowl. Season to taste with S & P. (go light on the salt as the preserved lemons are salty!)Serve with a small pile of chopped almonds on top. At table pass lemon quarters and hunk of grating cheese such as parmesan or asagio with the grater for eaters to garnish themselves.

http://mariquita.com/recipes/pandezuccero.html

The Last of the Fall

Here we are once again at the last CSA Summer/Fall Pickup of the year. It always seems like it comes so fast, although I never think that it will in the middle of the summer heat. We've had a wonderful season and we are incredibly pleased with the quantity and quality of produce we were able to grow this season. Our crew was unmatched in enthusiasm, curiosity and stamina. They were hard working, positive and supportive of each other even through the toughest moments of the season. I feel lucky to count them as my colleagues and fellow farmers. Our community of CSA members, farmer's market customers, chefs, and volunteers have grown and I am continually humbled and amazed by the support we have received by our community. Every CSA Pickup, Farmer's Market and restaurant delivery renews my commitment and energy after seeing and talking to those that we feed each week from our farm. We are busy filling the root cellar and cleaning up the last of the fields and are looking forward to a bit of a break in the colder months. We hope you'll join us for the winter and for next season. Watch for updates about the farm in the next few months, we have some exciting things in the works. 

Thank you thank you thank you for your support, enthusiasm and commitment to our farm and what we do. We look forward to serving you again and again. 

Scenes from the farm: Sunrise over the farm, dahlias and fall colors, a perfect basket of broccoli, sunset over the farm.

In the share:

arugula

specialty greens

spinach

head lettuce

kale

swiss chard

collard greens

cabbage

napa cabbage

purple top turnips

beets

carrots

radishes

watermelon radishes

fennel

radicchio

celery root

winter squash

onions

garlic

cilantro

dill

parsley

rosemary

sweet peppers

broccoli

PARSLEY, FENNEL, AND CELERY ROOT SALAD 

GOURMET NOVEMBER 2001

INGREDIENTS

    • 1 large fennel bulb with fronds (sometimes called anise; 1 1/4 lb)
    • 4 1/2 cups small fresh flat-leaf parsley sprigs (from 3 large bunches)
    • 1 1/2 cups small curly parsley sprigs (from 2 large bunches)
    • 1 medium celery root (1 lb), peeled with a sharp knife and cut into 1/8-inch-thick matchsticks
    • 2 1/2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
    • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
    • 3/4 teaspoon sugar
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    • 1/3 cup olive oil

PREPARATION

    1. Tear enough fennel fronds into small sprigs to measure 1 1/2 cups. Trim fennel stalks flush with bulb and discard stalks. Quarter bulb lengthwise, then cut lengthwise into paper-thin slices with a mandoline or other manual slicer. Toss sliced fennel with fronds, parsley, and celery root in a large bowl.
    2. Whisk together lemon juice (to taste), shallot, sugar, salt, pepper, and oil in a small bowl. Toss salad with dressing.

 

Fall Colors

We are so very lucky to live in Pennsylvania  in the fall. The landscape all around us turns into a magnificent painting that not even a camera can do it justice. We sometimes catch ourselves just standing in the fields and staring at what once was gray and bare and then green and lush and is now the most beautiful brightest rainbow if autumn color we can imagine. 

Scenes from the farm: fall colors in the front field, frosty harvest morning, fog-bow over the farm, Duma looking beautiful with the collards

The share:

head lettuce

arugula

specialty greens

spinach

kale

collards

swiss chard

broccoli

radishes

purple top turnips

napa cabbage

standard cabbage

sweet peppers

carrots

beets

onions

garlic

herbs

radicchio

fennel

celery root

winter squash

Buttered Turnip Puree
Recipe courtesy of Tyler Florence


Total Time:
30 min
Prep:
10 min
Cook:
20 min
Yield:4 servings
Level:Easy
Ingredients

3 large turnips, peeled and cut into uniform chunks
1 quart milk
3 fresh thyme sprigs
1 clove garlic, peeled and gently smashed with the side of a knife
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Combine the turnips, milk, thyme and garlic in a medium saucepan. Set over medium heat and partially cover the pan. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 20 to 30 minutes, until the turnips are tender-the tip of a paring knife should go through without resistance.
Drain the turnips, reserving the cooking liquid, and transfer to a food processor (discard the thyme sprigs). Add about 1 cup of the reserved cooking liquid and the butter, season with plenty of salt and pepper and puree until smooth. Add more of the liquid, if necessary. Serve hot.


Recipe courtesy of Tyler Florence for Food Network Magazine

Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyler-florence/buttered-turnip-puree-recipe2.print.html?oc=linkback