Share Notes 10-26-17
CSA Share Notes:
Well, Fall is really here! We had our first touch of frost Wednesday morning at Red Moon Farm. None of the crops froze, but there were glimmers of frost on the farm truck, on our tiny-home rooftop, and on blades of grass as we began harvesting the arugula in the early morning. We think it must have just barely grazed 32 degrees.
We’re expecting it to dip a couple of degrees colder on Friday and Saturday mornings, which means the heat-loving crops will not survive without intervention (and luck), so we’re preparing in a few ways.
- We harvested all the basil we could and sent it out in the small shares, since they hadn’t received any of it yet, and we know the basil is unlikely to survive.
- We harvested every last one of the ripe sungold cherry tomatoes, but there weren’t enough to send out in the shares. We may bring these to the Rose City Farmers Market on Saturday. Stop in to get the last of them for this season.
- We’re covering a few things with frost-cloth to protect them and keep them producing for you: eggplant, peppers, and cucumbers. The cloth offers a 2-3 degree level of protection, so if it only dips down to 31 or so, we’ll be good! We should then be able to send them to you for another week or two until the temperature dips lower.
So that’s the news on the farm! Here’s the vegetable line up this week:
- Eggplant—Small shares received Italian eggplant, Black Beauty and/or Listada Di Gandia, and Large shares received the long Japanese variety. Still figuring out how to cook with eggplant? Chop and salt, then allow to drain in a colander for an hour. High heat is wonderful for eggplant, sweetening it without it becoming mushy. Roast it in the oven or lightly char it on a hot griddle or grill. We’ve been making my favorite Summer Veggie Green Curry almost weekly from the abundance of bell peppers and eggplant.
- Tender Kale—everyone received another bunch of our young, tender kale. We’ve got a great recipe for kale pesto potato salad, and a lovely fall kale salad that would be great with roasted sweet potatoes.
- Onion—Everyone received a couple of our petite, flavorful red onions. They’re nearing the end of their season, so some have developed a fine black dust just under the skin. To remove, just peel down one more layer, and they’re fantastic.
- Radish—French Breakfast. This radish is a long, slender rooted heirloom crop that we really love. Jess’ favorite way to eat these radishes is sliced thin on top of a piece of rye bread smeared with avocado, and sprinkled with sea salt.
- Sweet potatoes—Large shares only.
- Cucumber—Small shares. If they survive the frost, we hope to have many more in another week or two.
- Swiss Chard—Large shares only. Colorful, bright lights chard is excellent in a fresh salad or braised with onion and garlic.
- Basil—Small shares. This is Genovese basil, excellent in Italian dishes, and perfect for a small batch of pesto.
- Arugula—this bag of tender, flavorful greens is our favorite salad staple this time of year.
- Asian Greens Mix—These nutritious greens pack some serious flavor, and some of them are fairly spicy, like mustard greens. These are wonderful braised, or mixed into a salad with more mild greens like lettuce or spinach. I like them on top of my grass-fed burger with feta crumbles.
Veggie Storage tips:
Basil does not like to be cold, so just place in a glass of water on the counter, out of direct light. Snip the stems every few days so they can keep slurping up that water to keep the leaves fresh. Onions and sweet potatoes will prefer to stay at room temp. Eggplant will keep longest stored in the fridge sealed up in a bag. The Japanese variety of eggplant doesn’t last long, so plan to use it up soon. All the leafy greens will want cold storage. Make sure they’re sealed up so they don’t get wilty. Radishes should be severed from their tops to keep the roots from getting rubbery, then sealed up in the fridge to stay crisp. Did you know radish greens are edible? And right now they’re super tender and delicious. The radish tops can be stored like other greens. Everything will need a gentle washing before cooking, but leave the dirt on until you’re ready to use them to prevent faster spoilage.
We’d love to hear stories and recipes of your culinary adventures this week. Send us a note or post a comment of how you’ve used your CSA share.
Jess & Justin
Large Share: (top left to right) Kale Arugula, mixed Asian Greens, eggplant. Chard, red onion, sweet potato, and French Breakfast radish.
Small share: (top left to right) kale, mixed Asian Greens, arugula, basil. Cucumber and onion in the center. (Bottom row) Listada di Gandia eggplant, and Black Beauty eggplant (you may have received one type, or both) and French Breakfast radishes on the end.
We have a wide variety of cucumbers you may have received this week! Here are a few types you could expect to find: