Farm News (10/6/15)


Important Reminders & Announcements:

  • This is the FINAL WEEK for summer vegetables and fruit.
  • This is a vegetable and fruit week for full and half-share members.
  • Next week we will be delivering fall vegetables for full share members only. Half share members will pick up fall vegetables the following week.The first delivery of fall eggs, dairy and meat will be the week of 10/19.
  • We will send out an email tomorrow regarding the start of the fall season. The email will contain a link to our fall pickup site lists. Please check to make sure that we've got you down for the correct shares at the correct site. 
  • Registration is now open for 2016 shares. Use discount code renew to save 5% on the weekly fruit share and/or the weekly 3-season vegetable package (spring, summer & fall). 

This Week's Vegetable Share (full & half shares):
  • Spinach
  • Crimini or White Button Mushrooms (from River Valley Ranch)
  • Arugula
  • Head Lettuce
  • Yellow or Red Potatoes
  • Kohlrabi 
  • Fresh Ginger
  • Radishes
  • Red Onions
  • Green Peppers and/or Sweet Red & Orange Peppers

This Week's Fruit Share (full & half shares):
  • Raspberries
  • Cortland Apples
  • Mutsu Apples
  • Gala Apples
We're wrapping up the fruit season with red raspberries and a selection of apples including (from right) Gala, Mutsu and Cortland. This final fruit share will contain a larger quantity of fruit than most weeks. To keep your apples fresh and crisp, please store them in the refrigerator.

This Week's Dairy Share:
  • Chevre (fresh goat cheese) from La Clare Farms
  • 'Saxon', an Alpine-Style Cheese from Saxon Creamery
  • Plain Greek Yogurt & Raspberry Yogurt from Sugar River Dairy
Yesterday Peg had a chance to spend time with Lisa Hall at Saxon Homestead Farm & Creamery. Saxon is a pasture-based dairy farm and creamery operated by fifth-generation members of the Klessig family. All of Saxon's cheeses are crafted using milk from cows that graze on hundreds of acres of lush grasses surrounding the small cheese factory. The cows are moved to fresh pasture every day. This practice results in healthier cows and healthier soil.
Saxon's Jersey/Holstein crossbred cows provide the creamery with milk that is exceptionally high in protein and butterfat content. This type of milk is perfect for making cheese. It's also interesting to note that the flavor of the milk (and the flavor of the cheese) changes with the change of the seasons. This is because different plant species tend to dominate the pastures at different times of the year, and the plants the cows eat impart different flavors to the milk. It's only natural that Saxon's tagline is "Flavor by Nature".
Not too far from Saxon is LaClare Farm, where Larry and Clara Hedrich have been raising dairy goats for nearly 40 years. These are some of the goats that provided the milk for your chevre this week. Because chevre is a fresh cheese, it is best eaten within a week or so. (We're willing to bet it won't last nearly that long. Once you taste it you'll know what we mean!)

Notes from the Farm Kitchen
You may have noticed that spinach disappeared from your CSA shares as soon as temperatures climbed into the 80s this summer. That's because some seeds, including spinach, germinate best when the soil temperature is below 75 degrees. Now that cooler weather has returned, we are harvesting spinach again. Fresh greens form the foundation of a healthy diet, and we're happy to share a couple of our new favorite recipes for cooking with spinach, arugula and other fresh greens.

Turkish Yogurt & Spinach Dip
8 ounces fresh spinach, roughly chopped
1 bunch arugula, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon lemon juice (more to taste)
2 to 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cups Greek yogurt
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion

Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Fill a bowl with ice water. When the water comes to a boil, add the spinach and arugula and blanch for 10 seconds. Transfer to the ice water, cool for a minute, then drain and squeeze dry.

Combine garlic with the lemon juice and olive oil, and let stand for 10 minutes. Stir in the yogurt. In a medium bowl, combine the greens, the yogurt mixture and the onion. Add freshly ground pepper to taste and more salt if desired. Serve with bread, pita or raw vegetables. (FYI, kohlrabi works great with this dip. Peel kohlrabi and slice into sticks.)

Sesame Spinach with Fresh Ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
2 teaspoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger
10-12 ounces fresh spinach 

In a small dry skillet, toast sesame seeds over moderate heat, stirring, until golden. In a medium pot, heat oil over moderate heat until hot but not smoking and cook garlic and ginger, stirring, 30 seconds, or until fragrant and golden. Add spinach by handfuls, stirring, and cook until just wilted. Serve spinach sprinkled with sesame seeds.

Spinach & Apple Grilled Cheese
8 slices whole grain bread
Dijon mustard to taste
2 cups grated cheese (Saxon or similar Alpine-style) 
4 ounces spinach leaves
1 sweet-tart apple (Mutsu or similar) thinly sliced
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 ounces butter, room temperature

Spread 4 slices of bread with mustard; top with half of cheese, then spinach, and apple slices. Season with salt and pepper and top with remaining cheese and bread; butter tops.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Cook sandwiches, butter side down, pressing firmly, until underside is toasted , about 2 minutes. Flip sandwiches and cook until second side is toasted and cheese is melted, about 2 minutes. 

Next Week's Harvest (our best guess)... sweet potatoes, leeks, carrots, garlic, lettuce, parsley, shallots, spaghetti squash and more!

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  • Margaret Sheaffer