Share Notes Aug 5 & 7
CSA Share Notes:
Welcome to week 7 of our summer season. In some years the summer season has drawn to a close right at the start of August, if the weather’s been especially hot and dry. But this year we’re feeling really optimistic that the garden has a few weeks worth of harvests left for you! We’re aiming to last until the 3rd or 4th week of August, but of course we will see what the garden can do.
Here’s this week’s vegetable line up:
- Bell Peppers— The peppers are going so strong! We have a nice handful of purple and green for everyone.
- Italian Peppers— Use them like bells, in fajita veggies, or to dip in hummus, they’re great!
- Jalapenos— A nice handful for everyone this week.
- Poblanos—For the regular shares. Dice them up into anything you want to add a gentle heat and wonderful poblano flavor.
- Slicing Tomatoes — For the Large and Regular shares. You may have received Orange Valencia or Big Beef. Most of these will need a few days on the counter to complete ripening. We always recommend you store them “shoulders down” (or upside down) as the stem end ripens last and is sturdiest to support the tomato’s weight. The bottom/blossom end of the fruit ripens first and is most susceptible to bruising.
- Cherry Tomatoes — We have enough sungold cherry tomatoes for everyone! Finally! This feels like a good sign that tomato abundance is near for the other varieties too.
- San Marzano Tomatoes — for all the shares this week. These are a nice, low-moisture sauce tomato, excellent for a pico or salsa. Use them like you would any Roma types. These ripen unevenly, from the bottom up, as do many of the heirloom varieties. And it can be a bit tricky to find the sweet spot of when to eat heirlooms. You’ll likely need to give them a couple of days to ripen on the counter if you have a good amount of green on the top of the tomato, but know that you should not expect them to be fully red, tip to toe. There will likely still be a little bit of under-ripeness near the top when the majority of the tomato is at perfect eating ripeness, and you’ll just cut that part off and discard. If you wait until they are fully red at the top, the bottom half may be over ripe.
- Eggplant— The large shares received eggplant this week. The Fairy Tale variety and the Japanese variety are the first to mature, so you’ll have a couple of those this week. Soon the large, dark purple Italian should be ready, too.
- Zucchini— Just enough for the Mini shares this week.
- Summer Squash— yellow squash for the regular and large shares. There are two different types, crook neck, and Zephyr, which is half lime green, half yellow.
- Cucumbers— a few for everyone.
- Basil—Sweet, tender, delicious leaves. I love putting big handfuls of basil in a Thai curry. If your basil arrives wilty, you can successfully refresh it in a sink of cold water for a couple of hours, then trim the stems and place in a glass of fresh water. **READ BASIL STORAGE TIPS BELOW**
- Onions— A few for everyone!
Veggie Storage tips:
Remember, treat basil like flowers, not vegetables: *do not store it in the fridge.* It prefers to be in a nice cool spot in your kitchen, away from the sun, stem down in a fresh glass of water. Trim the stems and refresh the water each day, and your basil will last at least a week or more.
All your eggplant, peppers, squash, zucchini, and cukes will keep longest stored in the fridge sealed up in produce bags. Peaches will last longest in the fridge, but eat them soon as they’re quite ripe. Tomatoes do not want to be stored below 50 degrees or they turn mealy, so keep them at room temp or in the coolest area of your kitchen. Onions prefer a dry, room temperature spot. Everything will need a thorough washing before cooking, but leave the dirt on until you’re ready to use them to prevent 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.
Your farmers, Jess & Justin
Regular Share top left to right: onions, bell peppers, Italian peppers, poblano peppers, San Marzano tomatoes, basil. (2nd row) Sun golds, yellow squash, cucumbers, slicer tomato, jalapenos