Share Notes April 25, 2024

Share Notes April 25, 2024

CSA Share Notes:

Welcome to week 2 of the Spring CSA.   We’ve got something super special for ya! Read on to learn about GARLIC SCAPES.

We’re rich in leafy-greens this time of year, and your challenge as a CSA member is to try and use up every leaf before next week. Daily salads and lots of sauteed greens is the strategy.  Bonus: If you eat it all up, you win the prize of a healthier, nourished body!  More root crops and cruciferous veggies will gradually be rotating into the box as they mature in the coming weeks.

Look back at your emails from last week to download our e-book I sent you: Tips For CSA Success: A beginner’s guide for CSA members. It’s loaded with all the helpful guidance you need to ensure you love the next 2 months of farm-focused eating.

Here’s this week’s vegetable line up

  • GARLIC SCAPES! — These beauties are ready a few weeks early this year, and I am so excited to share them with you. They are a chef favorite and only available if you’ve got a connection to a local farmer. You’ll never see them in stores. LUCKY YOU! This crop is the flowering stalk of the garlic plant. We remove them so the plant will focus energy on bulb production, and not waste it on making a flower.  Fortunately, the flowering stalk is delicious and garlicky. They’re perfect chopped and sauteed into eggs or leafy greens, added to a soup or frittata, or even sliced thin like scallions for a mild garlicky crunch atop your tacos, or any dish that calls for green onions. You can even make a wonderful scape pesto out of them- just add walnuts, parmesan, and olive oil and blend. Wonderful atop pasta or with crusty bread.
  • Kale — Lacinato for the Regular shares, Curly kale for the Large shares.  These crops can be used interchangeably in any recipe that calls for kale.  The lacinato is nice raw in a massaged kale salad. It’s also my favorite for soups like minestrone or Portuguese sausage, potato, kale soup. We suggest trying our Rainbow Kale Salad with Lentils this week!
  • Collard — A bunch of super tender fresh collards for the Large and Mini shares. If you’re not familiar with cooking collards, here’s the southern way: (it’s so good!) chop up a couple of strips of bacon and cook until no longer raw, but still soft. Slice up an onion and chop a few cloves of garlic and cook that in with the bacon fat until translucent. Add a pinch of red pepper flakes if you’re daring. Next toss in the shredded or sliced collard leaves and wilt. Cook until as tender as you like them (I prefer mine with a little chew left). Or you can also sub collards into any Kale recipe with near identical result.
  • Chard — Regular shares. This colorful crop is eye catching and tastes a whole lot like spinach. This week I sauteed mine in the cast iron according to the method mentioned above for the collard greens, and then topped them with parmesan and pine nuts and put them under the broiler for a few minutes. It was heavenly.
  • Spinach — A bag of fresh, iron-rich spinach  for the Large and Mini shares (a few Mini shares received Spring Mix instead).
  • Spring Mix — A bag for the Regular shares.  This mix is colorful, and loaded with different textures and flavors. Also, these leaves are a little spicy, and are excellent paired with crunchy almonds, and a sweet sesame ginger dressing. A little sweetness cuts through the peppery bite of the salad greens. These greens can also be sauteed or braised like the collard, kale, or chard.
  • Radishes — Mini shares received Easter Egg radishes.  Great on sandwiches, salads, or dip into hummus, or slice thin and serve with sea salt and lemon juice. Also wonderful dipped in melted butter!  FYI, radish tops are edible! You can cook them with your kale or collard greens. They tiny hairs come right off when cooked.
  • Turnips — Regular and Large shares received our Hakurei salad turnip, a white turnip you actually eat raw. These are incredible, and are the perfect turnip to try if you’ve always thought you didn’t like turnips! They’re so unique and yummy. Even my 2 year old really puts these away! Slice them and sprinkle with lemon and salt, add them to salads, or just chow down on them plain!
  • Beets — Regular shares received the last of our over-wintered beets. We’ve been enjoying these in the form of this Beet Spread for months and I am telling you: it’s so good. Please give it a go.  If you think you don’t like beets, try them roasted in a hot oven, and topped with a citrusy, mapely glaze. Wash and trim your beet greens, and add them to your chard! They taste almost identical and are super nutritioius.
  • Parsnips — These lovelies were also grown over the winter in our greenhouse alongside the beets. We didn’t get a whole lot of them, but they turned out great! You can mix your parsnips, beets, and a store bought sweet potato together for a wonderful roasted veggie mix. Roasting your veggies brings out the sugars in them and they become super delicious.
  • Head Lettuces — Regular shares received a green butter lettuce, Large shares did too, but also received a red summer crips, and Mini’s received Skyphos, a super tender and delicate lettuce that just happens to be my favorite.  The lettuces are a little beat up by the pounding 4 inch rain we got Saturday.  You’ll notice some brown spots and random tears on outer leaves, and you’ll need to trim those away.  We cleared out most of the ones that had damage this week and next week they should be looking much prettier!


Veggie Storage tips:

Make sure you consult the e-book we sent you last week for a comprehensive veggie storage guide! Most everything will keep longest stored in the fridge sealed up in produce bags, garlic scapes, included. Root crops should be severed from their tops to keep the roots from getting rubbery, and the greens stored separately, sealed up to stay fresh. Everything will need a gentle 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

Regular Share top left to right:  Swiss Chard, Asian Spring Mix, lettuce, Lacinato kale, (bottom row) Hakurei turnips, garlic scapes, parsnips, and beets.

Large Share

Large Share top left to right: Collard greens, spinach, green butter lettuce, curly kale (bottom row) Hakurei turnips garlic scapes, parsnips, and red summer crisp lettuce.

 Mini Share

Mini share: Spinach, skyphos lettuce. collards (bottom) Easter egg radish, garlic scapes, parsnips.