April 26, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Arugula - Revisit a classic salad, and pair your greens with blue cheese, pears and pine nuts.

  • Spinach -  A great addition to any mac & cheese, Annie’s or homemade!
  • Cherry Radishes - What about grilling??? Preheat your grill (med).  Toss 3-4 cups radishes (cleaned, trimmed, and cut to similar size) in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Grill on a preheated grill – MED heat, covered for 10-12 minutes, turning every 4 minutes or A grill pan can help prevent pieces from falling in-between the grates.  For tarragon dressing, mix 1/8 c olive oil, 1 tbsp red wine vinegar, 1/3 c fresh tarragon, 1/8 c chopped scallions, 1 tsp prepared horseradish, 1/2 tsp salt plus more to taste, cracked pepper, and 1/2 tsp mustard seeds ( optional).  Remove radishes from the grill and place in a bowl. Toss with dressing and serve warm.  You could place on a platter and springing with more tarragon.  This will also be good cold, the next day.

  • Snow Peas - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Green Garlic - For those of you who are wondering, green garlic and garlic scapes are not the same thing. Green garlic is harvested young before bulbs develop or dry out, whereas garlic scapes are the flowering stalks of the mature hard-necked garlic — an indicator that the garlic bulbs are ready to be harvested.

  • Oregano -  This herb is a perennial, although it is grown as an annual in colder climates, as it often does not survive the winter.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Spinach, Arugula, Turnips, Snow Peas, Green Garlic, Rosemary

 

 

Recipe

 

 

Fresh Snow Pea Salad with Pancetta and Pecorino (Serves 8)

This fresh, meaty dish is a real treat, with bright colors and flavors to jazz up your salad game.  Thank you to Food & Wine for the recipe!

  • 1 lb snow peas—strings removed, peas sliced on the diagonal 1/4 inch thick

  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • 4 oz thickly sliced pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch dice

  • 1/2 small white onion, finely chopped

  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

  • 1/2 tsp  lemon oil (Olive oil pressed or infused with lemon is available at specialty food stores and most supermarkets.)

  • Kosher salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 cup mint leaves, torn

  • 2 oz shaved Pecorino Sardo

Soak the snow peas in ice water for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the pancetta and cook over moderate heat until lightly browned and the fat has rendered, about 5 minutes. Spoon off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes.

Drain the snow peas and pat dry. In a medium bowl, whisk the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil with the lemon juice and lemon oil and season with salt and pepper. Add the snow peas, pancetta, onion and half of the mint and season with salt and pepper; toss well. Garnish with the remaining mint, shave the pecorino on top and serve.

 

 

Pic of the Week:

 

 

With the wet weather, we've turned to planting by hand for the first time in years!

April 19, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Arugula - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Carrots -  For a tasty, easy carrot salad: Grate a few carrots on the wide edge of a box grater. If you have great knife skills and the counter space for a cutting board, julienned is nice, too. Add some thinly sliced radishes and/or julienned fennel, if you're feeling fancy.  Mix the veg with a vinaigrette of 1 teaspoon grainy mustard, 3 tablespoons lemon juice, a generous quarter-cup of olive oil, and a touch of honey, along with some toasted cumin and fennel seeds.  Toss in some golden raisins (if you want; these are divisive), and top with toasted pistachios and lots of parsley.  The carrots this week are grown by our friends at Riverdog Farm.

  • Butternut Squash - How to cut a butternut squash: The key to cutting a butternut squash is halving the squash into two manageable sections.  Start by cutting off the stem with a large, sharp knife.  Turn the squash so the cut end is facing away from you, and insert the tip of your knife straight down into the center of the vegetable, keeping it stable with your free hand. Press the handle of the knife down until you cut through the bottom half.  Rotate the squash 180 degrees and insert the knife into the center again, repeating the technique in step 2 to halve the squash.  Now the seeds can be removed and the squash prepared as your recipe specifies. In effort to bring diversity into the box, the butternut squash this week is also grown by our friends at Riverdog Farm.

  • Green Garlic- Drop everything you are doing and make this green garlic toast, immediately.  You’re welcome :) Heat the broiler. Place a couple slices of crusty bread on a baking sheet and broil them, flipping them halfway through cooking time, until golden on both sides. Keep warm.  In a bowl, stir together ½ c softened, unsalted butter (1 stick), ½ c grated Parmesan cheese, 2 ½ tbsp chopped young green garlic stalks (white and green parts), 1 tbsp minced chives, ½ tsp black pepper, ¼ tsp fine sea salt (more to taste,if desired) and a large pinch of red chile flakes.  Rub the toast with the cut side of a regular, halved garlic clove, then spread with the green garlic butter. Broil toast again for 30 seconds to 2 minutes, until the tops lightly brown and the butter melts. Serve hot or warm.

  • Mint-  This herb is so versatile, it pairs wonderfully with a variety of dishes. Throw it into your morning smoothie, make a mint pesto to top chicken, or pan fry it with ramps and spaghetti.  Yum!

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Arugula, Spinach, Snow Peas, Radish/Turnips, Green Garlic, Oregano

 

 

News

Don’t miss the Capay Valley Mothers’ Day Garden Tour!  This is a great opportunity to shower mom with flower straight from the field (including pick-your-own), tour farms in the beautiful Capay Valley, attend workshops, and share in the community with a lunch at the Grange. See the link above for more details.

 

 

 

Recipe

 

Fennel, Avocado, and Clementine Salad with Arugula and Mint (Serves 4)

This dish incorporates some of our favorite cold weather elements, but can also brighten these rainy springtime days with its eye-catching color palette!  Use two items from this week’s box and some other special veggies!  Thank you to Bon Appetit for the recipe!

 

Vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup (scant) fresh clementine juice (from about 3 clementines)

  • 2 tbsp fresh Meyer lemon juice (from about 1 lemon)

  • 2 tsp finely grated clementine peel

  • Pinch of sugar

  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

 

Salad

  • 2 medium clementines

  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed, quartered vertically, cored, sliced paper-thin (2 1/3 to 2 1/2 cups)

  • 1 avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, diced

  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, sliced

  • 1 cup (packed) baby arugula

  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for drizzling

 

Vinaigrette

Combine clementine juice, lemon juice, clementine peel, and sugar in medium bowl. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Season to taste with salt and coarsely ground black pepper.

Salad

Peel clementines, separate into segments, and place in medium bowl. Add fennel, avocado, and mint. Toss with enough vinaigrette to coat. Season fennel mixture to taste with salt and coarsely ground black pepper.

 

Toss arugula with 1 tablespoon olive oil in another medium bowl. Season to taste with salt and coarsely ground black pepper.

 

Arrange fennel mixture on serving platter, top with arugula, and drizzle with additional olive oil.

 

Season to taste with coarsely ground black pepper.

 

 

Pic of the Week:

Our coops and fields at sunset.

Hens on vetch.

April 12, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Baby Batavian Lettuce - Wild lettuce, from which modern lettuce is derived, originated in Asia Minor. The ancient historian Herodotus records its presence on the tables of 6th century Persian kings, and throughout the following centuries it became a popular crop all over Europe. Columbus brought it with him to the New World, starting its spread over the North American continent.

  • Yellow Grapefruit- Red and yellow grapefruit, often called white grapefruit, are closely related varieties of the same citrus fruit, Citrus paradisi. It's a hybrid cross between a variety of pomelo and a variety of sweet orange that was originally developed in Barbados.

  • Loose Chard - For rigatoni with swiss chard: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add 2 tablespoons salt and the 1 lb rigatoni (or other tubular) pasta; cook 3 minutes less than package indicates. Drain.  Heat 2 tbsp unsalted butter and 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat about 1 minute. Add 3 thinly sliced garlic cloves and 2 medium, finely chopped shallots; cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir in 1 ½ lb chard (leaves cut into ½ in strips and stems cut into 1 in pieces, l 2 tbsp finely grated lemon zest (about 2 lemons), ½ c dry white wine, 1 teaspoon salt, and a ½ tsp red pepper flakes; season with freshly ground pepper. Cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until chard has just wilted, 2 to 3 minutes.  Stir in pasta, ⅓ c fresh ricotta cheese, and ⅓ c toasted pine nuts. Cook, stirring occasionally, until pasta is al dente, 3 to 4 minutes. Divide among 4 serving dishes. Serve sprinkled with freshly grated Parmesan.

  • Green Garlic- Green garlic is young garlic with tender leaves that is harvested early in the season before the bulb is fully formed.The easiest way to think about green garlic is that it's baby garlic. It has a long green top that looks a bit like scallions, sometimes a tiny bulb at the end, and it may even be tinged with a bit of pink. Green garlic is more mellow and less spicy in flavor then regular garlic, and can be used raw or cooked like scallions. It's usually harvested in the spring.

  • Onion Flowers - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Thyme -  This herb can be propagated by seed, cuttings, or dividing rooted sections of the plant.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Arugula, Carrots, Butternut Squash, Green Garlic, Mint

 

 

 

Recipe

 

Vengayapoo Varai (Serves 2)

This stir-fry dish specially features onion stalks and flowers (vengaya poo), via A Taste of Sri Lankan Cuisine, which seeks to document the evolving cuisine of Sri Lanka, as experienced by the blogger and other friends from different parts of the country.  Enjoy this yummy dish that celebrates this seasonal delight!

  • 1 cup chopped spring onion stalk and flower/ Vengaya poo

  • ½ cup chopped carrot

  • 1 tbsp chopped

  • 1 chopped green chili

  • ½ tsp fennel

  • 1 tsp crushed red chillies

  • 2 tbsp sesame oil

Clean the onion stalks and carrot and chop them into small pieces. Add some salt and keep aside.

Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan. Add the fennel seeds, chopped onion and green chilli. Fry for 2 mins.

Add the chopped and salted onion stalks + flowers and carrots to the pan. Add 1 tsp crushed chilli and mix well.

Cook for around 10 mins over low heat.  Remove from heat and serve warm.

 

 

 

Pic of the Week:

Grow grow grow! Even though we've had small windows to eventually get our transplants in the ground, we're still waiting for that warm growing weather (or just plain sun) to show up. 

Aril 5, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Arugula - For a bright, spring arugula and radish salad: In a large bowl, whisk together 1 tsp dijon mustard and 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice; season with coarse salt and ground pepper. Whisk in 2 tbsp olive oil. (To store, refrigerate, up to 1 day.) Add arugula (1 ¼ lbs total) and 1 bu radishes (sliced) to bowl, and toss to coat. Serve salad immediately.  Also pairs wonderfully with sirloin steak!

  • Green Almonds - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Chard - This vegetable belongs to the same family as beets and spinach and shares a similar taste profile with a flavor that is bitter, pungent, and slightly salty.

  • Green Garlic- Green garlic may have started as an afterthought, but it certainly didn’t remain that way for long. Once offered only by extremely thrifty farmers who were selling off what they’d thinned from their fields, green garlic is now one of the trendiest items at the farmers markets and in CSA boxes.

  • Spring Onions - Brush them with olive oil and chargrill them whole!

  • Pea Shoots - You can very easily just swap them in for any soft, leafy green in a recipe. Much like watercress, the stems are edible — and the tendrils are just delicious. It cooks very similar to baby spinach and is versatile, too. You can eat pea shoots raw in a fresh salad; they can take the place of the more traditional lettuce or simply enhance it with pea shoots’ spring flavor. You can stir fry them with sesame oil and garlic, as has long been done in Asian cooking. These greens can also brighten up a spring pasta dish, contributing a fresh, soft taste.  To prepare and store pea shoots, there are just a couple of things to know. Since they are a delicate green, it’s best to eat them within 1-2 days of purchase.  They should be stored in the fridge like you would lettuce; and when ready to eat, coarse or yellow stems should be removed.

  • Mint -  You can serve mint pesto alongside or on top of chicken or poached or grilled fish, such as cod, bass, or halibut; as a condiment in cold-cut sandwiches; or with roasted or grilled lamb or beef.  In a food processor, combine 3 cups lightly packed fresh mint and ¼ sliced almonds; process until finely chopped.  With motor running, gradually pour ½ c extra-virgin olive oil through the feed tube. Season with salt. Keep at room temperature until ready to serve.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Arugula, Radish, Green Garlic, Spring Onion, Chard, Lettuces, Thyme

 

 

Recipe

 

Khoresh Chaghaleh Badoom - Green Almond Stew (Serves 4-6)

“Green almond, or chaghaleh badoom, is an unripe almond with a green fuzzy outer skin picked in early spring before the inner nut fully ripens and the outer shell becomes hard. Chaghaleh badoom is one of the favorite snacks in Iran which is traditionally eaten whole and dipped in a bit of salt. By early spring you will have to be on the lookout for them otherwise they will come and go in the blink of an eye since they have such a short season” says Azita from the blog Turmeric and Saffron, which features Persian cuisine, recipes, and stories.  Khoresh is a generic term for stew dishes in Persian cuisine, and this lesser-known but popular stew capitalizes on the small window of availability of these delectable treats (and also use some other items from this week’s box!).

 

  • 1 lb stew meat (lamb or beef), cubed

  • 1 lb green almonds, soaked in cool water for 6-8 hours or overnight, drain, use a paper towel to remove the fuzz (you may also slice the green almonds if you like)

  • 3 cups chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint

  • 1-2 tbsp dried mint (for added aroma and flavor)

  • 1 large onion finely chopped

  • 1/2 tsp turmeric

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • 2-3 tbsp lime juice, freshly squeezed

  • Vegetable oil

 

In a large pan, heat 3 tablespoons vegetable oil over medium-high heat and saute the chopped onions until soft and golden. Add the turmeric powder, stir well.

 

Add the meat to the pan, stirring occasionally, cook until brown on all sides. Add salt and pepper to taste.

 

Add 3 cups of water or enough to cover the beef. Bring back to boil, cover, reduce heat, simmer gently for 45 minutes.

 

Add the green almonds, parsley, fresh mint, dried mint. Add a little water if needed. Cover and cook for another 45 minutes over low heat. Add in the lime juice and continue cooking on low heat for another 10-15 minutes.    

 

Serve the khoresh warm with polow (Persian rice), mast o khiar (Persian yogurt and cucumber dip)and salad shirazi (a type of tomato, cucumber, and onion salad).

 

 

Pic of the Week:

Still trying to squeeze in transplants between the rains.

Still trying to squeeze in transplants between the rains.

March 29, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Yellow Grapefruit - Grapefruit will keep at room temperature for a week when stored in a bowl or basket with good air circulation. Kept in an airtight bag in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator, it can be stored for up to two months.  This year’s drought crop from our homestead is smaller than usual, but still tasty.

  • Chard - The secret to cooking this vegetable — as with most winter greens — is to cook them low and slow. They’ll lose their crispness and then become definitely tender. But if you push them just a little further still, you’ll find that they've become terrifically earthy and sweet. Patience is a virtue; it might take as much as 45 minutes over very low heat.  You can short-cut the cooking a little by blanching the chard in rapidly boiling salted water before sauteing it. Just be sure to squeeze out all the excess moisture before you add the greens to the pan.

  • Green Garlic- Because green garlic has not been cured, it can’t be stored for very long. Keep it tightly sealed in a plastic bag in the refrigerator; even though green garlic is milder than regular garlic, it still has enough pungency to flavor that carton of milk that’s next to it.

  • Spring Onions - For roasted spring onions: Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss 4 bunches spring onions (trimmed, halved lengthwise) and 6 sprigs thyme with 4 tbsp oil in a shallow 13x9” baking dish; season with Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Add ½ c low-sodium chicken stock and roast until tender, 30–35 minutes.  When onions are almost finished roasting, toss 1 c fresh breadcrumbs and  1 tsp finely grated lemon zest with remaining 2 tbsp oil; season with salt and pepper. Toast on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing halfway through, until golden brown, 8–10 minutes.  Serve onions topped with breadcrumbs.

  • Pea Shoots - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Oregano -  The leaves of oregano are the most commonly used part of the plant, but strangely, the aroma and flavor of the leaves is far greater when the herb is dried than when the leaves are fresh, which is somewhat unusual for an herb.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Green Almonds, Arugula, Pea Shoots, Spring Onions, Green Garlic, Chard, Mint

 

 

 

Recipe

Frittata With Brown Rice, Peas, and Pea Shoots (Serves 6)

From Martha Rose Shulman at The New York Times: “I often add leftover rice to gratins, something I learned to do in Provence. Here I decided to make a substantial frittata instead, with rice as part of the filling. Although I used brown rice, Calrose, basmati and jasmine rice also work well.” A great option for brunch!

 

  • 1 lb fresh peas, shelled (about 3/4 c)

  • 6 oz pea shoots (1/2 big bunch), curly tendrils removed and discarded

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 bu young spring onions or scallions, cleaned and finely chopped (about 1/2 c)

  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon

  • 1 tbsp chopped chives

  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

  • 1 c cooked brown rice, long-grain or short-grain (may substitute cooked basmati or jasmine rice)

  • 7 eggs

  • 2 tbsp milk

 

Steam the peas over an inch of boiling water for 4 minutes, until just tender. Transfer to a bowl. Add the pea shoots to the steamer and steam 2 to 3 minutes, until just wilted. Remove from the heat and allow to cool until you can handle them. Do not discard the steaming water; pour it into a measuring cup. Squeeze out excess water from the pea shoots and chop medium-fine. You should have about 1 cup chopped leaves and tender stems.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium heat in a medium skillet and add the chopped spring onion or scallions. Cook, stirring, until wilted, about 3 minutes. Stir in the pea shoots and stir together for about a minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the peas, tarragon and parsley and about 1/4 cup of the steaming water, turn up the heat and cook, stirring, until the liquid has evaporated. Remove from the heat.

Beat the eggs in a large bowl. Add about 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste), freshly ground pepper, and the milk. Stir in the rice, chives and pea mixture and combine well.

Heat the remaining oil in a 10-inch, preferably nonstick pan over medium-high heat until a drop of egg sizzles and sets within seconds of being added to the pan. Stir the frittata mixture and add it to the pan, scraping in every last bit with a rubber spatula. Shake the pan gently, tilting it slightly with one hand while lifting up the edges of the frittata with the spatula in your other hand, to let the eggs run underneath during the first few minutes of cooking. Once a few layers of egg have cooked during the first couple of minutes of cooking, turn the heat down to low, cover the pan and cook over low heat for 10 minutes, shaking the pan gently every once in a while. From time to time remove the lid and loosen the bottom of the frittata with a wooden spatula, tilting the pan, so that the bottom doesn’t burn. The eggs should be just about set; cook a few minutes longer if they’re not.

Meanwhile, heat the broiler. Uncover the pan and place under the broiler, not too close to the heat, for 1 to 3 minutes, watching very carefully to make sure the top doesn’t burn (at most, it should brown very slightly and puff under the broiler). Remove from the heat, shake the pan to make sure the frittata isn’t sticking and allow it to cool for at least 5 minutes and for up to 15. Loosen the edges with a wooden or plastic spatula. Carefully slide from the pan onto a large round platter. Cut into wedges and serve hot or warm or at room temperature.

Advance preparation: The cooked peas and steamed greens will keep for a day or two in the refrigerator; the completed frittata will keep for a couple of days in the refrigerator and is delicious cold.

 

 

 

Pic of the Week:

 

Farmer Dusty picking yellow grapefruit.

March 22, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Kale - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Chard - For sauteed chard with orange: In a large skillet, heat 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil over medium-high. Add 2 bunches chard (large stems removed, leaves cut into 1-in strips) and zest from one orange. Cook, tossing frequently, until chard wilts, about 4 minutes. Season with coarse salt and ground pepper, then add juice of the zested orange; toss to coat.

  • Green Garlic- This allium comes in a range of sizes, from scallion-slender to nearly fully grown bulbs. The one thing they all share in common is the fact that they are freshly dug and haven’t been dried to reduce moisture and concentrate flavor.

  • Spring Onions - Halve them, toss them in oil with salt and pepper, and throw them on the grill - yum!

  • Carrots -  Last of the winter! Make carrot-almond dressing, which is great to serve over fish and wilted greens! Combine ¼ c grated carrots, ¼ c chopped roasted almonds, 1 tbsp white wine vinegar, 1 tsp orange zest, ¼ cup of oil, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper in a medium bowl.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Spring Onions, Green Garlic, Chard, Radish, Yellow Grapefruit, Oregano

 

 

 

News

Attention Bay Area CSA members! We’re looking for someone to help us in a part-time paid position of just 2-3 hours per week on Wednesdays to fulfill our our home deliveries within a relatively small radius. Email us at sayhayfarms@gmail.com if you or someone you know is interested.    

 

 

Recipe

 

Portuguese Kale Soup with White Beans (Serves 4-6)

With the return of cold, rainy weather, a hearty soup is in order.  Feel free to sub  spring onions and green garlic for the items listed.  Thank you to the famed Moosewood Restaurant for the recipe!

  • ½ cup dried white beans (navy, pea, or Great Northern)

  • 2½ cups water or vegetable stock

  • 2 whole garlic cloves, peeled

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • ½ teaspoon ground fennel seeds

  • 1 garlic clove, minced or pressed

  • 1½ cups chopped onion

  • 1 potato, chopped (about 1 cup)

  • 1 small carrot, chopped (about ½ cup)

  • 1 small parsnip, chopped (about ½ cup)

  • 1½ cups chopped fresh or canned tomatoes

  • 6 cups vegetable stock

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano (1 teaspoon dried)

  • 12 dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes (about ½ cup), soaked in boiling water to cover

  • 4 cups loosely packed, chopped kale

  • Pinch of saffron (optional)

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

 

Cook the beans in the water or stock with the whole garlic and two bay leaves; the beans should be tender in 1 to 1½ hours.

While the beans are cooking, prepare the other ingredients.

Heat the olive oil in a soup pot, add the ground fennel and minced garlic, and sauté for a minute.  Add the onion and sauté for 2 minutes.  Add the potato, carrot, and parsnip and sauté for another minute before adding the tomatoes, stock, two bay leaves, and oregano; simmer for 10 minutes.

Drain the soaked sun-dried tomatoes and chop coarsely.  Add to the soup pot with the kale and the drained, cooked beans. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until the vegetables are tender and the flavors have mingled.

Add the saffron and salt and pepper to taste.

 

 

Pic of the Week:

Abe and Marshall plugging lettuces on the water wheel transplanter before we were halted again by the rain. 

Transplants "hardening off" before being set out in the field. 

March 15, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Mint - This simple sauce of fresh mint, sugar, and vinegar is a classic pairing with roast lamb in England.  Combine 2 ¼ cups mint leaves, 1 tbsp sugar, 1 tsp Kosher salt, and 1⁄4 cup boiling water, and stir until sugar dissolves. Add 1 cup white vinegar, and cover; let sit for 1 hour to meld the flavors.

  • Celeriac - Although cooked celery root is excellent in soups, stew, and other hot dishes, it can also be enjoyed raw, especially grated and tossed in salads. Raw celery root has an intense flavor that tends to dominate salads, so pair it with other strongly flavored fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, beets, and apples.

  • Chard - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Green Garlic- To prep, treat it like a small leek: trim off the very bottom of the bulb (the roots are actually edible too, once the basal plate -- the part that holds the roots to the plant -- is removed), and use all of the tender white and light green parts. Dark green leaves can be saved for stock, or used to add flavor to a soup (pop them in whole, like a bay leaf).

  • Spring Onions - Spring onions are called so because they are harvested in the springtime. There's more flavor packed into spring onions compared to green onions, and that's because they are grown for a longer period of time. Spring onions are more sharp and pungent than green onions, but not as strong as yellow onions.

  • Carrots - The first carrots of the season (those harvested in the spring and summer) do not need to be peeled -- just wash them well and proceed with your recipe or eat them raw.

  • Navel Oranges - All navel oranges are clones! That's right -- because they're seedless and propagated by grafting, navel oranges are all direct descendents of the same tree. Of course, there are variations based on other factors: oranges grown in humid, southern regions like Texas have thinner skin and are lighter in color, while cooler climates like California produce thicker-skinned, more brightly colored fruit.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Kale, Chard, Spring Onions, Green Garlic, Navel Oranges

 

 

 

Recipe

 

Crispy Pan-Fried Beans and Wilted Greens (Serves 2 as a main dish or 4-6 as a side)

From Food 52: “There's a certain satisfying symmetry to a dish with slightly crispy, blistered, pan-fried beans mixed with ribbons of tender greens. If you're at home for lunch, this makes a perfect mid-day meal. Otherwise, add a poached egg or scoop of pasta and this becomes an easy dish to throw together for dinner.”

 

  • 8 oz (1/2 bunch) Swiss chard

  • 1 onion, thinly sliced

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 12 oz (2 cups or one 15-oz can) cannellini or other white beans, drained and rinsed

  • Zest from one lemon

  • Juice from 1/2 lemon

  • 1 teaspoon za’atar

  • 1 to 2 teaspoons salt

  • Good-quality extra-virgin olive oil

 

Trim the center stem from the Swiss chard and slice the leaves cross-wise into ribbons. Chop the stems into bite-sized pieces.

Heat one teaspoon of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the onions with 1/2 teaspoon salt until they are very soft and uniformly golden-brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and the chopped chard stems, 1 minute. Transfer the onion mixture to a bowl.

Warm another 1 to 2 teaspoons of oil, enough to coat the entire bottom of the pan. Add the beans and spread them into a single layer. Cook for 2 minutes without stirring. Stir and spread them out again. Repeat until all the beans are blistered all over. Adjust the heat as needed to prevent burning the beans.

Stir the chard leaves, the za'atar, and another 1/2 teaspoon of salt into the beans. Stir until the chard is completely wilted and tastes tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the onion mixture back in, along with the lemon zest and juice from 1/2 lemon. Stir and taste. Add more lemon juice, salt, or other seasonings to taste.

Serve immediately, drizzling a little extra-virgin olive oil over each dish. Add a poached egg, a scoop of pasta, or a piece of toast to make a more complete meal. The beans will lose their crispiness as they cool, but leftovers still make a tasty meal. This dish will keep refrigerated for up to a week.

 

 

Pic of the Week:

The chicks are growing up.  Here they are on vetch and peas, a little over thirteen weeks old. 

Meet Scott. He is in charge of the day-to-day chicken welfare and egg handling on the farm. You can also thank him for converting those muddy winter eggs into the clean, beautiful ones in your boxes over the past few months.  (Mostly) sunshine ahead! 

March 8, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Kale - For lemony kale salad: In a large bowl, whisk together 1 tbsp lemon zest, juice of 1 lemon juice, and  ¼ c extra-virgin olive oil until well combined. Add 8 cups coarsely chopped kale (ribs removed) and toss to coat. Add ½ cups shaved Parmesan cheese and ⅓ cup toasted blanched hazelnuts (coarsely chopped); season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper. Toss before serving.

  • Dandelion Greens -The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Green Garlic- Green garlic often looks so similar to green onions and spring onions that you’ll have to do a double-take. The best way to be sure you’re getting green garlic is to take a whiff -- it should smell pleasantly of garlic rather than onion. You'll also notice that leaves are flat

  • Spring Onions - Young onion tops can be used almost anywhere you'd use scallions.

  • Carrots - Yum - roasted coconut carrots! Heat oven to 400℉ degrees. Peel carrots and cut into 2-inch batons. Season well with salt and pepper and drizzle with coconut oil. Spread them on a baking sheet and roast, uncovered, until carrots are lightly browned and tender when pierced, 20 to 25 minutes. (Carrots may be roasted in advance and reheated if desired.)  Transfer hot carrots to a serving dish. Add jalapeño and mint and toss to distribute. Sprinkle with cilantro and squeeze lime juice over everything. Garnish with lime wedges.

  • Navel Oranges - Make refreshing orange granita: Squeeze 5 to 6 oranges to yield 3 cups of juice. In a small saucepan, combine 1/4 cup orange juice and 1/2 cup sugar. Boil over high heat, stirring, until sugar dissolves, about 1 minute. Transfer mixture to a shallow 2-quart dish, and add remaining orange juice.  Freeze, scraping around sides and breaking into crystals with a fork every 30 minutes, 2-2 1/2 hours total. Cover with plastic wrap; keep in freezer until ready to serve.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Carrots, Spring Onions, Celeriac, Chard, Navel Oranges, Mint

 

 

 

Recipe

 

Dandelion Salad with Pomegranate Seeds, Pine Nuts, and Roasted Delicata Squash (Serves 8)

This salad balances out the bitter taste of dandelion with the power of pomegranate and vinegar.  Thank you to Bon Appetit for the recipe!

 

  • 6 tbsp pomegranate juice

  • 1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

  • 1 1/2 tbsp red wine vinegar

  • 7 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

  • 2 tbsp butter, divided

  • 2 unpeeled medium delicata squash or 1 medium acorn squash, halved, seeded, cut into 24 wedges total

  • 1 lb dandelion greens, thick stems trimmed, leaves cut into 2-inch lengths (about 12 cups)

  • 1 1/2 cups pomegranate seeds

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted

 

Whisk pomegranate juice and vinegars in bowl. Gradually whisk in oil. Season with salt and pepper. Re-whisk before using.

 

Melt 2 teaspoons butter in heavy large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1/3 of squash wedges. Cook until browned on both sides, about 5 minutes total. Transfer squash wedges to rimmed baking sheet. Repeat 2 more times with remaining butter and squash wedges. Sprinkle squash with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 6 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.)

 

Preheat oven to 450°F. Transfer squash to oven; bake 20 minutes.

 

Mix greens, pomegranate seeds, and pine nuts in large bowl. Toss with half of dressing. Divide among plates; top with squash. Drizzle with dressing.

 

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Pic of the Week:

Two of our three owl boxes already have mating pairs for the season! 

Our almond trees in bloom!

March 1, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Kale - Sauteed ribbons of garlicky kale are the perfect addition to your egg & cheese breakfast sandwich!  You can also add red pepper flakes for a little kick :)

  • Rainbow Chard - For sauteed chard with onions and caraway: Heat 3 tbsp olive oil in a large sauté pan over high heat until the oil is almost smoking. Add 2 large onions (sliced ¼- ½ in wide slices, root to stem) and toss to coat with oil. Sauté for 10-12 minutes stirring often, until the onions are soft and browned on the edges. Sprinkle with salt while the onions are cooking.  Add 1 lb chard (center ribs removed, leaves roughly chopped)  to the onions and mix well with tongs. Once the chard wilts, 2 to 4 minutes, add 1 tbsp honey, 1 tsp caraway seeds, ¼ tsp celery seeds, and ½ tsp black pepper. Toss well to combine and cook for another 2-3 minutes, stirring often. Add 2 tsp sherry or red wine vinegar right before serving.

  • Celeriac- The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Spring Onions - The bulb can be quite pronounced or more like a leek in shape, with no noticeable swelling; interestingly, this has no impact on flavor..

  • Mokum Carrots - Whisk together olive oil, harissa, and a splash of lemon juice and honey. Toss the carrots in the mixture to coat them. Preheat a baking sheet at 425°F, then spread out the carrots on the sheet; roast until tender and caramelized, stirring occasionally, 35-40 minutes. If needed, toss with another small spoonful of harissa. Garnish with parsley or cilantro.

  • Navel Oranges - Make orange vinaigrette for your next salad: Whisk 2 tbsp orange juice, 2 tbsp white wine vinegar, 2 tsp grated orange peel, and ¼ tsp salt in a small bowl to blend. Whisk in olive oil; season to taste with freshly ground pepper.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

 

Vegetable Forecast

Kale, Dandelion, Carrots, Spring Onions, Green Garlic, Navel Oranges

 

 

 

Recipe

 

Celeriac-Kale Gratin With Walnut Bread Crumbs (Serves 4)

 

Yum! A hearty gratin to get us through these cold late winter nights, using two items from this week’s box.  Thank you Washington Post for the recipe!

 

 

  • 2 lbs celeriac, peeled and cut into 1/2-to-3/4-inch cubes

  • 2 cups homemade or no-salt-added vegetable broth

  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 large onion, sliced thinly from top to bottom

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves

  • 2 tablespoons white wine or dry cider

  • Leaves from 1 lb (1 bunch) lacinato or curly kale, rinsed (but not dried) and torn into bite-size pieces

  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 3 oz country-style white or whole-wheat bread, crusts removed

  • 1/3 cup walnut halves or pieces

Place the celeriac pieces in a large saucepan; add enough of the broth to barely cover, reserving at least 1/4 cup of the broth from the original 2 cups. Cook over medium heat; once the liquid starts to bubble, cook for about 5 minutes or until the celeriac  is fork-tender. Turn off the heat.

Heat half of the oil in a heavy saute pan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the onion and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, stirring to coat. Reduce the heat to medium-low; cook for 5 minutes or until the onion is translucent, then stir in the garlic and thyme. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes, until the onion is tender and starting to pick up color.

Stir in the wine or cider; cook for a minute or two.

Use a slotted spoon to transfer the celeriac to the onion mixture, stirring gently to incorporate. Season with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, and cook for a few minutes (over medium-low heat) to meld the flavors. Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl. Discard the remaining broth used to cook the celeriac, or reserve for another use.

Pour 1 tablespoon of the oil into the same saute pan or Dutch oven over medium heat; once the oil shimmers, add the kale and half of the reserved broth. Season with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, stirring to coat. Reduce the heat to medium-low; partially cover and cook for 3 to 10 minutes until softened, depending on the toughness/type of the kale used. Stir occasionally; reduce the heat to low if the kale seems dry, or add the remaining reserved broth.

Transfer to the mixing bowl and season with the pepper and remaining salt.

Preheat the oven to 375℉. Have a shallow 2-quart baking dish at hand.

Tear the bread into chunks, dropping them into a food processor as you work. Pulse to form coarse bread crumbs, then transfer to a separate bowl. Pulse the walnuts in the food processor briefly, just until coarsely chopped, then add to the bread crumbs. Drizzle the mix with the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and toss gently to coat.

Spread the celeriac-kale mixture in the baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with bread-crumb-walnut mixture. Bake for about 25 minutes or until the top is deep golden and the gratin is bubbling.

Wait for 10 minutes before serving.

Make Ahead: The gratin can be refrigerated for up to 2 days. Reheat in a 350℉ oven for 20 minutes or until warmed through; cover with aluminum foil if the topping starts to brown too much.

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Pic of the Week:

Muddy wheels and valley clouds

February 22, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Baby Lacinato Kale - These tender greens are great to use as the base for salads.

  • Green Garlic - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Catalogna Dandelion- These greens do well blanched or thinly sliced and wilted with pasta.

  • Spring Onions - Deep fry ‘em! In a large, deep pot, pour in 2 inches of vegetable oil and heat to 350℉. Put 1 cup buttermilk and 1 cup flour in separate shallow bowls.  Trim the tops of the 8 spring onions so they fit comfortably in the pan. Remove the outer layer and trim the bottom of each onion, then halve them lengthwise (or wedge them if they are thick).  Dip half the onions in buttermilk, then dredge in flour and fry for 3-4 minutes, until golden brown and tender. Remove to a paper-towel-lined plate and season with salt. Repeat with remaining onions.

  • Mokum Carrots - Roast carrots in two-inch lengths or roast small carrots whole. Pulverize garlic, ground cumin, fresh herbs of your choice, and lemon or orange zest in a food processor or mortar and pestle. Blend in olive oil, salt, and pepper (and red pepper flakes if you wish). Toss and rub the carrots in the paste-like mixture and roast until tender and browned. Toss the hot, cooked carrots in a splash of lemon juice or orange juice, or red wine or balsamic vinegar.  Serve with sliced avocado and a sprinkle of flaked sea salt over the top, and if you wish, a handful of greens or a spoonful of cheese or yogurt.

  • Navel Oranges - Sweet, salty, and tangy, with a hint of spice, this Mediterranean starter delights with its abundance of flavors - make olive-topped orange slices! Remove the peels and pith from 3 navel oranges; slice crosswise into thick rounds. Toss 2 tbsp sliced green olives (such as Castelvetrano) with 1 ½ tsp lemon juice and 1 ½ tsp extra-virgin olive oil; spoon onto orange slices. Top with 1 packed tbsp chopped fresh mint, flaky sea salt and a pinch of red hot pepper flakes (to taste).

 

 

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Chard, Kale, Celeriac, Spring Onions, Carrots, Oranges

 

 

News

 

Catch us tomorrow at the Sacramento Natural Foods Farmer Luncheon!

 

 

 

Recipe

 

Green Garlic Stuffed Mushrooms (Makes about 24)

Use your delicious green garlic from this week’s box to make this delightful hors d’oeuvres for your next gathering.  Thank you to Food52 for the recipe!

 

Green Garlic Confit

  • 1 ½ cups quarter inch sliced green garlic stalks

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • ¼ cup water

  • ½ teaspoon salt

In a small sauce pan with a lid, melt the butter and add the sliced green garlic, water and salt. Cover and gently cook the mixture over medium-low heat, stirring often until the liquid is almost all evaporated. This should take about 20 minutes. Set aside to cool a bit while you prep the mushrooms.

For the mushrooms and stuffing

  • 24 white or brown button mushrooms, caps about 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

  • 4 oz softened cream cheese

  • 3/4 cup panko bread crumbs

  • 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese

  • The green garlic confit

  • Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling

Remove the stems from the mushrooms (save for another use) and then clean the mushrooms with either a mushroom brush or wipe them with paper toweling.

Place the mushrooms in a bowl and toss them with the 2 tablespoons of olive oil and then place them, cap side up on a baking sheet. In a preheated 425°F oven, roast the mushrooms for 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and turn them over. Lower the oven temp to 350°F.

In a small mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, panko, parmesan and green garlic confit. Distribute the filling into the mushroom caps and then drizzle a little extra virgin olive oil over each mushroom.

Roast the filled mushroom caps at the 350°F temp for about twenty minutes or until the filling just begins to brown. Let cool for a minute or two before enjoying warm.


 

 

Pic of the Week:

 

Break in the rain clouds

February 15, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Baby Lacinato Kale - No need to de-stem if you tend to think the middle is too chewy, they are tender enough to use them whole!

  • Celeriac - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Loose Beets - You can grill beets whole, or cut in slices, wrapped in foil, seasoned with herbs and spices, or directly on the grill rack above a hot fire.

  • Spring Onions - Fantastic in frittatas and outstanding in omelettes!

  • Mokum Carrots - For spiced carrot fries: Preheat the oven to 400°F.  Wash, scrub and peel 2 lbs of carrots. Trim the top and bottom of each carrot, and cut into fries. Put the carrots in a baking dish, spoon in 1 tsp honey, and pour a dash each of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Toss with a wooden spoon to coat. Add more oil and vinegar if necessary. Sprinkle cumin, ginger, salt and pepper generously, and toss again.  Put the dish in the oven to bake for roughly an hour, checking on the progress regularly after the first half hour, tossing the carrots from time to time for an even browning. The carrot fries are ready when they are thoroughly cooked, and start to get a little crisp at the edges.

  • Navel Oranges - Make this delicious dessert - Fresh Oranges with Caramel and Ginger: Start with 5 oranges.  Finely grate the zest (use a rasp-style grater if you have one) from one of the oranges to get 2 tsp. zest. Cut the tops and bottoms off each orange, being sure to cut into some of the flesh; reserve the tops and bottoms. Cut the peel off the sides, exposing the flesh by cutting under the pithy membrane. Discard the peels cut from the sides. Cut each orange in half vertically, trim out the pithy core, and then slice each piece crosswise into 1/4-inch half moons. Arrange the slices on a large, shallow serving dish or deep platter.  Combine the zest and 2 tbsp chopped, crystallized ginger on a cutting board and chop them together until they're well mixed. Scatter the ginger and zest evenly over the oranges. Put 2 Tbs. water in a small, heavy saucepan and pour ⅓ c granulated sugar on top. Bring to a boil over high heat, lower the heat to medium high, and boil without stirring until the syrup has turned a deep medium brown, 5 to 8 minutes. Watch the pan carefully during the last few minutes, as the caramel goes quickly from brown to burnt. Using a heavy pot holder to hold the pan, immediately drizzle the caramel over the oranges, getting a bit of caramel on each slice. Scatter the thinly sliced mint (about 8-10 leaves) over the oranges. Squeeze the juice from the reserved ends of the oranges over all.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Baby Lacinato Kale, Carrots, Onions, Green Garlic, Loose Beets, Navel Oranges

 

 

 

News

We were so thrilled with the little bit of sunshine and t-shirt weather over the past few days.  It was a moral boost for sure.  It’s amazing to think that one year ago we were talking and worrying about historic drought conditions, and now, we’re talking about potential a dam failure from overflow.

We certainly welcome this rainy winter.  But (!), we are getting a bit concerned that spring plantings may become delayed past the realm of possibility.  It has been so wet this spring that we barely were able to sneak in an acre of quick greens and roots to keep your CSA boxes filled.  Yet we still have acres upon acres of cover crop and post-harvest winter crops that need to be dealt with in addition to the spreading, disking, shaping, taping, and planting of six acres that we have planned just about four weeks from now.  

Not to seem ungrateful, but, if you’re still doing a rain dance, would you please stop? We need a two week break here to get caught up for spring.  Thank you kindly.

 

 

Recipe

 

Celeriac and Carrot Soup (Serves 4)

A yummy simple seasonal soup - bright, comforting, and  featuring two ingredients from this week’s box.  Thank you to Bon Appetit for the recipe!

 

  • ½ large celeriac, peeled, chopped
  • ½ lb carrots, peeled, chopped
  • ¼ c plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp finely grated peeled ginger
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • Celery leaves and chopped Granny Smith apple (for serving)

 

Place celery root and carrots in a large pot; add 6 cups water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat; cook until tender, 30–35 minutes. Let cool slightly. Purée in a blender with yogurt, honey, coriander, and ginger until smooth; season with salt and pepper.

Serve soup topped with celery leaves and apple.

 

 

Pics of the Week:

As the sun came out, the wild mustards came alive with buzzing bees.

As the sun went down, the moon rose over our fields.  We're still packing away after dark in the packing shed.  And you can see the red glow of our chick brooders providing warmth and security to those growing girls.

February 8, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Broccoli Shoots - Unlike a full head of broccoli, they don't need to be separated into florets.  If you normally are not a stalk fan, these are very tender and you can eat them tip to stem. Braising, steaming, or sauteeing works well, and they cook evenly.

  • Brussels Sprouts - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Loose Beets - For Beets in Vinaigrette recipe by the unmatched Edna Lewis: Cover 1 ½ lbs medium beets (trimmed, leaving 1 inch of stem attached) generously with water in a heavy medium saucepan and simmer until tender when pierced in center with a knife, 30-45 minutes. Drain in a colander and cool to warm, then slip off skins. Cut beets into 1/4-inch slices.  Meanwhile, whisk together 2 ½ tbsp cider vinegar, 2 tbsp finely chopped onion, 2 tsp sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a large bowl. Add ¼ c olive oil in a slow stream, whisking, then add warm beets and 2 tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley and toss. Season with additional sugar and salt. Serve warm or at room temperature.  Cooks' note: Beets can be roasted and sliced 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. Bring to room temperature before tossing with vinaigrette and parsley.

  • Spring Onions - Have a splinter that just won’t budge? Try taping (yes, with tape, or a adhesive bandage) a piece of raw onion to it. Hold tight for about an hour before removing the onion.

  • Mokum Carrots - Make carrot-almond dressing, which is great to serve over fish and wilted greens! Combine ¼ c grated carrots, ¼ c chopped roasted almonds, 1 tbsp white wine vinegar, 1 tsp orange zest, ¼ cup of oil, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper in a medium bowl.

  • Navel Oranges - A little bit of citrus zest goes a long way in baked goods.  Even if a recipe doesn't call for zest, you can fold a tablespoon or two of orange (or lime or lemon) zest into just about any sweet bread, muffin, scone, biscuit, etc.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Baby Lacinato Kale, Carrots, Onions, Celeriac, Loose Beets, Navel Oranges


 

News

Please spread the word: We’re hiring for 2017! Check out our job opportunities for Field Crew and Egg Handler here.

These storms keep rolling in and bring a lot of moisture with them.  This week we were treated with a string of rainbows and a slough cresting its banks.  We’re thankful, though, that in the grand scheme of things, we’ve skated by without too many losses or power outages.  Here’s to continued good fortune….

 

Recipe

 

Kale and Brussels Sprout Salad (Serves 8-10)

Brussels sprouts are a special treat!  This gorgeous, simple salad can be the star of the show or a side dish.   Thank you to Bon Appetit for the recipe recommendation!

  • 1/4 c fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp minced shallot
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely grated
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt plus more for seasoning
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 large bu of lacinato kale (about 1 1/2 lb total), center stem discarded, leaves thinly sliced, or baby kale
  • 12 oz brussels sprouts, trimmed, finely grated or shredded with a knife
  • 1/2 c extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/3 c almonds with skins, coarsely chopped
  • 1 c finely grated Pecorino
  • Combine lemon juice, Dijon mustard, shallot, garlic, 1/2 tsp. salt, and a pinch of pepper in a small bowl. Stir to blend; set aside to let flavors meld. Mix thinly sliced kale and shredded brussels sprouts in a large bowl.

Measure 1/2 cup oil into a cup. Spoon 1 Tbsp. oil from cup into a small skillet; heat oil over medium-high heat. Add almonds to skillet and stir frequently until golden brown in spots, about 2 minutes. Transfer nuts to a paper towel-lined plate. Sprinkle almonds lightly with salt.

Slowly whisk remaining olive oil in cup into lemon-juice mixture. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

DO AHEAD: Dressing, kale mixture, and toasted almonds can be prepared 8 hours ahead. Cover dressing and kale mixture separately and chill. Cover almonds and let stand at room temperature.

Add dressing and cheese to kale mixture; toss to coat. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Garnish with almonds.

 

 

Pics of the Week:

 

 

See our job postings on our website and SPREAD THE WORD!

Cottonwood Slough crests and redecorates its banks.

Rainbow over Mr. Mooney

February 1, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Broccoleaf - Use broccoleaf instead of cabbage in your slaw!

  • Cauliflower - Roast it with breadcrumbs - Preheat oven to 450°F, with racks in upper and lower thirds. On two large baking sheets, toss 2 lbs/1 hd cauliflower (in florets), with 2 tbsp olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Roast until tender and browned, 20 to 25 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through.  Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine 2 slices sandwich bread and 1 chopped garlic clove; season with salt and pepper. Pulse until coarse crumbs form. In a medium skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium. Add breadcrumbs and cook, tossing frequently, until toasted, 3 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl and let cool. Stir in 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley, 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves, and the grated zest of one lemon.  Toss cauliflower with juice of the lemon and sprinkle with breadcrumbs.

  • Beets - Peel, grate and eat as a salad, with raisins, grated carrot, and apples - yum :)

  • Spring Onions - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Mokhum Carrots - Carrots are grown from seed and can take up to four months (120 days) to mature, but most varieties mature within 70 to 80 days under the right conditions.

  • Navel Oranges - When adding zest to a cooked dish, the key is to add it at the very last minute, so the flavors stay bright.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli Shoots, Carrots, Onion, Loose Beets, Oranges


 

News

Tuesday-Wednesday of this week is our best chance to get some seed in the ground after a much-needed, but difficult to farm in, series of rain storms.  With more rain coming on Wednesday night, we’re using the opportunity to sow as many beds of baby greens and spring root vegetables as we can.  The New Year’s peas have popped, though variety rotted in the wet ground, and the other two needed a bit of assistance breaking the crust that forms in clay soil after heavy rains.  Hopefully we’ll have enough time left after seeding to get a little cultivation in before another week of wet weather.  

 

 

Recipe

 

 


Cauliflower Salad with Spring Onions and Mint (Serves 6)

This simple, beautiful salad has a couple of things that you might not have on hand but with two ingredients from this week’s box, you are well on your way!   Thank you to Tasting Table for the recipe.

  • ¼ c dried barberries (also called zereshk; optional)

  • ¼ tsp salt, plus more to taste

  • ¼ tsp sugar

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets

  • ½ c thinly sliced spring onions

  • ⅓ c finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

  • ⅓ c finely chopped mint

  • ¼ c nigella seeds (black onion seeds)

  • ¼ c toasted sesame seeds

  • ¼ c extra-virgin olive oil  

  • Zest and juice from 2 lemons
     

In a small container, combine the barberries with ¼ cup lukewarm water, ¼ teaspoon each of salt and sugar, and allow to reconstitute, about 30 minutes. Strain and set aside.

Working in batches, pulse the cauliflower in a food processor until it has broken down into pea-size crumbles. Transfer to a large mixing bowl along with the barberries, onions, parsley, mint, nigella seeds, sesame seeds, olive oil and lemon zest and juice. Season generously with salt and toss. Serve immediately.


Pics of the Week:
 

View from the ladder.

Farmer Sean Mooney digging in to get those overwintered carrots.

January 25, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Broccoli - The stems are one of the best parts - don’t let them go to waste!  Shred the stems on a box grater or with the shredding attachment on a food processor. Add shredded stems to homemade veggie burgers, or combine them with shredded potato (or any other vegetable), along with an egg and a little flour; pan-fry the batter to make savory vegetable fritters.

  • Golden Beets - To retain nutrients and color, boil, bake or steam without peeling first. The skin will easily rub off under cold running water after they are cooked.

  • Butternut Squash - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Spring Onions - The Latin name for this variety of onion is allium fistulosum; allium means ‘garlic’ and fistulosum means ‘hollow stemmed’.

  • Mokhum Carrots - For carrots in marsala: Begin with about 1 lb young carrots, peeled and cut on the diagonal. Melt 2 tbsp of unsalted butter in a deep sauté pan and add the carrots, briefly sautéing over medium heat to coat them evenly with the butter. Add 1/2 cup dry Marsala to the pan, and allow it to bubble up, then add enough water to almost cover the carrots. Sprinkle over about 1 tsp granulated sugar and a pinch of salt. Bring the liquid to a gentle simmer, cover the pan, and cook the carrots until they are just fork-tender. Remove the cover, and turn up the heat. Continue to cook the carrots, shaking the pan occasionally until the liquid has evaporated and the carrots are nicely glazed. Toss them with a bit of chopped Italian parsley, and serve immediately. Try to resist eating the entire quantity in one sitting.

  • Navel Oranges - When zesting, keep these rules in mind:

  1. Be sure to wash and dry the fruit before using the zester. Cooks often skip the citrus rinse, because they're only using the juice—but be sure to run it under water and pat it dry if you plan on using the peel.

  2. If using both the juice and the peel, grate it first. Trust us: Trying to zest 8 tiny wedges is no fun.

  3. Avoid the white pith separating the colorful zest and the fruit. It's overly bitter and doesn't have the same brightness as the actual peel.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Cauliflower, Carrots, Beets, Spring Onions, Navel Oranges

 

 

 

News

 

 

And the rain keeeeeps coming! We’ve received over half of a normal year’s rainfall in just over the past two weeks.  Which is great!  Now we need things to dry out a little so we can play catchup in the field.  This is the time of year where the CSA boxes can be come a bit repetitive in terms of variety, but February and March are shaping up to be especially slim on variety since it has been too wet for us to plant anything.  Hey, if you have to be stuck with half a dozen vegetables: these are some of the best!

 

 

Recipe

 

 

Panzanella with Winter Squash and Sage (Serves 6)

This dish can serve as a hearty, carby main, or a yummy side.  Butternut squash is the winter star of this panzanella, or ‘bread salad’, a versatile dish that includes a combination of whichever vegetables are in season at the time.  Thank you to The New York Times for the inspiration!

  • ½ delicata or medium butternut squash (about 1 ¼ lbs), peeled, seeded and sliced into 1/4- to 1/2-inch-thick moons
  • 8 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • 8 oz stale bread, torn into bite-size pieces (about 5 cups)
  • 2 ½ tbsp red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 plump garlic clove, mashed to a paste in a mortar and pestle or put through a garlic press
  • ¾ cup thinly sliced celery
  • ½ cup thinly sliced radishes
  • 1 ½ tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • Ground black pepper
  • 1 romaine lettuce heart, leaves rinsed, dried, and torn into smaller pieces
  • 1 tbsp chopped chives
  • 1 oz shaved Parmesan
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh sage

Heat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Toss the squash with 1 tablespoon olive oil and salt to taste. Roast 25 minutes or until soft and caramelized on the edges, turning the slices over halfway through. Remove from heat.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Add bread and stir until crisp, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat.

Make the vinaigrette: In a small bowl, whisk together vinegars, salt to taste, mustard, garlic and 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) olive oil.

Combine bread, celery, radishes, half the squash, thyme, parsley and pepper in a large bowl. Add 1/4 cup vinaigrette and toss together.

Whisk 1 tablespoon olive oil into remaining vinaigrette and toss with lettuce and chives. Place on a platter or in a wide bowl and top with bread mixture. Garnish with remaining squash and the Parmesan shavings. Sprinkle sage over the top, and serve.

 

Pics of the Week:

 

A cover crop of vetch, peas, and oats.  We'll till this under as soon as it dries out to feed back to the soil 

Marshall and Abe - starting their second year on the farm - doing a great job and keeping it real hauling onions out of the muck.  With these wet conditions, we have to keep the tractors out of the beds. 

January 18, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Broccoli Crowns - For roasted broccoli with pumpkin seeds and grated Pecorino: Preheat oven to 425°F. Arrange 2 lbs broccoli (stems peeled and sliced, florets cut into ½-in thick slices) and ⅓ c raw hulled pumpkin seeds in single layers on 2 rimmed baking sheets. Drizzle with 3 tbsp olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat.  Roast, rotating pans once, until golden in spots and just tender, about 20 minutes. Let cool slightly on baking sheets, then sprinkle with 2 tbsp finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese. Divide 2 cups cooked short-grain brown rice among serving dishes, top with broccoli mixture, and finish with lemon wedges before serving.

  • Golden Beets - Vegetable tops will pull moisture from the roots, and you will have shriveled and dry roots before you know it if you don't remove them. Roots, like beets, carrots, radishes, turnips, rutabaga, may have leafy, green tops attached that should be removed immediately and stored separately. (Treat these tops like other leafy greens if you plan to use them.)

  • Lacinato Kale - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Spring Onions - Rather than using a knife to chop spring onions, try kitchen scissors for easy cutting!

  • Mokhum Carrots - For a carrot puree on a dip platter: place 2 lbs (cut lengthwise into ½-in thick pieces) carrots in a medium saucepan, and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until carrots are tender, about 20 minutes. Drain, reserving cooking liquid.  Puree carrots in a blender or with a potato masher, adding cooking liquid as needed, until thinned but still chunky. Stir in salt, and season with pepper.

  • Navel Oranges - Oranges have relatively thick rinds and can store at room temperature for several days. To keep them longer, refrigerate them.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Broccoli, Carrots, Beets, Onions, Butternut, Navel Oranges

 

 

News

We hope you’re enjoying these winter carrots as much as we are! If you have a store bought carrot in your fridge still, we urge you to try them side-by-side and compare the flavor and texture- it’s unreal!  We wish we could maintain this quality year-round, but in our climate,carrots grown in warmers months will get woody and not nearly as sweet.  Savor it!

 

 

Recipe

Barley And Kale Salad With Golden Beets And Feta (Serves 4)

This colorful grain dish uses two items from this week’s box.  It holds up very well if you are going on a picnic later in the day or packing lunch for work.  Thank you to Bon Appetit for the recipe!

  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil; more for drizzling

  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar

  • 2 tbsp (packed) light brown sugar

  • 1/2 tsp finely grated orange zest

  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

  • 1 bu kale, center ribs and stems removed, leaves cut into 1-inch squares

  • 1/4 c minced shallots

  • 3 golden beets (about 1 bu), trimmed

  • 1 1/4 c pearl barley

  • 4 z feta, crumbled

  • 2 tsp (or more) unseasoned rice vinegar

Whisk 1/4 cup oil, white wine vinegar, sugar, and orange zest in a large bowl to blend; season with salt and pepper. Add kale and shallots; mix until completely coated. Cover and chill until kale is tender, at least 3 hours.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°F. Arrange beets in a small baking dish and drizzle with a little oil. Season with salt and turn beets to coat. Cover with foil.

Bake beets until tender when pierced with a thin knife, about 45 minutes. Let cool completely. Peel beets. Cut into 1/4-inch pieces (you should have about 2 cups).

Cook barley in a large pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 45 minutes. Drain barley and spread out on a rimmed baking sheet; let cool completely.

Add beets, barley, and feta to kale. Drizzle salad with remaining 2 tbsp oil and 2 tbsp rice vinegar; fold gently to combine. Season to taste with pepper and more rice vinegar, if desired.

DO AHEAD: Salad can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill.

 

Pic of the Week:

Sean, Marshall, and Abe working hard to get your CSA boxes packed the night before delivery.  (With frozen fingers...)

January 11, 2017

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Romanesco - Make sure your florets are roughly the same size, so they cook evenly. If you’re roasting them, don’t make them too large, as they’ll burn on the outside before they’re fully cooked.

  • Gold Beets - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Celeriac - Celery "root" is a misnomer -- it's actually a bulbous hypocotyl, which is the name for the area of a plant between its stem and roots. (In celeriac's case, the true roots are those feathery hairs all over its surface.) All varieties of celery will produce these bulbs when left to grow for long enough, but the celeriac you find at market is particularly chosen for its less prominent stalks and well-developed hypocotyl.  Because the plants are grown for what's underneath the soil, not above it, the stalks of celeriac bulbs are stringy and tough. Instead, skip ants on a log and use them to flavor stock, where they make a perfect stand-in for conventional celery in a mirepoix.

  • Spring Onions - If you can't get hold of shallots, try using spring onions instead. When chopped, they don't take long to soften in olive oil or butter - around a minute. Cook them over a gentle heat for best results.

  • Mokhum Carrots - Up to the Middle Ages, all carrots were purple - the orange variety was first developed in 16th-century Holland by patriotic growers who bred it in tribute to the king, William I of Orange.

  • Broccoleaf - Chiffonaded broccoleaf works perfectly in your quiche, scrambled eggs, or frittata!

  • Navel Oranges - Don’t juice it!  There are two kinds of oranges: juicing oranges and eating oranges. The most popular eating orange is the seedless navel orange, but if you’re planning on juicing that citrus, go with the Valencia.  Limonin is a natural compound and powerful antioxidant found in citrus fruit. But when limonin is exposed to air, it converts the enzymes and becomes very bitter — and the juice sours. In navel oranges, limonin is found in the flesh, so when you juice it, that chemical goes to work within 30 minutes. In the Valencia, limonin resides in the seeds, so the juice stays fresher and sweeter much longer.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Broccoli, Carrots, Beets, Spring Onions, Kale, Navel Oranges

 

 

News

Welcome back to the first farm box of 2017!  

It has been quite the wet start to the new year.  Big picture, that’s awesome.  We’re so grateful to see the ground getting soaked and recharging our underground reservoirs.  Our county roads were flooded and doing anything (including harvesting this week’s boxes) is very, very slow going.  

In the shorter term, it may spell some challenges to some of our root crops, crops that need cultivation, and most importantly, our ability to predict when we might be able to work our ground to prepare for our spring planting.  Many of the plants we (hope) to plant in March are starting out in the greenhouse this week and will be depending on a month’s work of field work to prepare the ground for transplanting.  

 

 

Recipe

 

Root Vegetable Slaw with Labneh (Serves 6)

According to Yotam Ottolenghi, this dish is “ideal for starting a hearty meal.  It is also great served alongside grilled oily fish. The labneh can be substituted with Greek yogurt, well seasoned with some olive oil, crushed garlic and salt and pepper. It can also be left out all together, if you prefer to keep it light and simple.”  Using three items from this week’s box, this salad is colorful and delicious.  Thank you, Ottolenghi!

  • 3 medium beets

  • 2 medium carrots

  • ½ celeriac

  • 4 tbsp lemon juice

  • 4 tbsp olive oil

  • 3 tbsp sherry vinegar

  • 2 tsp superfine sugar or sweetener of choice

  • ¾ c cilantro, coarsely chopped

  • ¾ c mint leaves, shredded

  • 2/3 c flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped

  • ½ tbsp lemon zest

  • scant 1 cup labneh or plain whole milk yogurt

  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Peel all vegetables and slice them thinly, about 1/16-inch thick. Stack a few slices at a time on top of one another and cut them into matchstick strips. Alternatively, use a mandoline or a food processor with the proper attachments. Place all strips in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Set aside while you make the dressing.

Place the lemon juiced, olive oil, vinegar, sugar, and 1 teaspoon sea salt in a small saucepan. Bring to a gentle simmer and stir until the sugar and salt have dissolved.

Remove from heat. Drain the vegetable strips and transfer to a paper towel to dry well. Dry the bowl and replace the vegetables. Pour the hot dressing over the vegetables, mix well, and leave to cool. Place in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes.

When ready to serve, add the herbs, lemon zest, and 1 teaspoon pepper to the salad. Toss well, taste and add more salt if needed. Pile onto serving plates and serve with some labneh or yogurt.

 

Pics of the Week:

Last decisions of our spring 2017 crop plan.

Scotty and Vince stripping mud off of your bunched onions. 

December 21, 2016

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Romanesco - Many botanists believe it was the result of selective breeding by Italian farmers in the 16th century.

  • Beets - Slice unpeeled beets into quarters, place on a baking sheet and roast for about 30 minutes or until cooked through. Once cooled, you can toss a few into your smoothies and enjoy all the sweet goodness beets have to offer.

  • Kale - For collard and kale pesto: Cook 1 small bu collard greens (stems removed) and 1 small bu kale (stems removed) in a large pot of boiling salted water until bright green and tender, about 45 seconds. Transfer to a bowl of ice water (this will stop the cooking and help lock in the color). Drain; squeeze out as much liquid as possible (to avoid a watery sauce).  Coarsely chop greens and place in a food processor. Add 3 garlic cloves (chopped), ½ c grated Parmesan, 1 c olive oil, ½ c unsalted, roasted peanuts, 1 tbsp finely grated lemon zest, and 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice; process on low speed until a coarse but well-blended mixture forms (a little texture is part of the selling point). Season with salt and plenty of pepper.  Do Ahead: Pesto can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing directly against surface, and chill.

  • Cabbage - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Onions - Caramelized onions are a great addition to homemade quesadillas! Yum

  • Carrots - Carrots are a domesticated form of the wild carrot, Daucus carota, native to Europe and southwestern Asia. The plant probably originated in Persia and originally cultivated for its leaves and seeds.

  • Celeriac - Pairs well with your carrots, onions, and cabbage.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Until Next Year!

 

News

We hope you enjoy this last box of the year!  As a reminder, the next two Wednesdays are the only two weeks of the year that we don’t harvest CSA shares for our members, so we all can take time to share the holidays and some rest and reflection with our family and loved ones.

We at the farm thank you for your membership in 2016 and look forward to an even better and healthier 2017.

Happy New Year!

 

Recipe

 

Mason Jar Sauerkraut (Makes 1 - 1 1/2 quarts)

How to make your very own sauerkraut in your very own mason jar, in 10 easy steps!  Enjoy homemade fermented goodness thanks to The Kitchn!

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head green cabbage (about 3 pounds)

  • 1 1/2 tbsp kosher salt

  • 1 tbsp caraway seeds (optional, for flavor)

Equipment

  • Cutting board

  • Chef's knife

  • Mixing bowl

  • 2-quart wide-mouth canning jar (or two-quart mason jars)

  • Canning funnel (optional)

  • Smaller jelly jar that fits inside the larger mason jar

  • Clean stones, marbles, or other weights for weighing the jelly jar

  • Cloth for covering the jar

  • Rubber band or twine for securing the cloth

1. Clean everything: When fermenting anything, it's best to give the good, beneficial bacteria every chance of succeeding by starting off with as clean an environment as possible. Make sure your mason jar and jelly jar are washed and rinsed of all soap residue. You'll be using your hands to massage the salt into the cabbage, so give those a good wash, too.

2. Slice the cabbage: Discard the wilted, limp outer leaves of the cabbage. Cut the cabbage into quarters and trim out the core. Slice each quarter down its length, making 8 wedges. Slice each wedge crosswise into very thin ribbons.

3. Combine the cabbage and salt: Transfer the cabbage to a big mixing bowl and sprinkle the salt over top. Begin working the salt into the cabbage by massaging and squeezing the cabbage with your hands. At first it might not seem like enough salt, but gradually the cabbage will become watery and limp — more like coleslaw than raw cabbage. This will take 5 to 10 minutes. If you'd like to flavor your sauerkraut with caraway seeds, mix them in now.

4. Pack the cabbage into the jar: Grab handfuls of the cabbage and pack them into the canning jar. If you have a canning funnel, this will make the job easier. Every so often, tamp down the cabbage in the jar with your fist. Pour any liquid released by the cabbage while you were massaging it into the jar.  Optional: Place one of the larger outer leaves of the cabbage over the surface of the sliced cabbage. This will help keep the cabbage submerged in its liquid.

5. Weigh the cabbage down: Once all the cabbage is packed into the mason jar, slip the smaller jelly jar into the mouth of the jar and weigh it down with clean stones or marbles. This will help keep the cabbage weighed down, and eventually, submerged beneath its liquid.

6. Cover the jar: Cover the mouth of the mason jar with a cloth and secure it with a rubber band or twine. This allows air to flow in and out of the jar, but prevents dust or insects from getting into the jar.

7. Press the cabbage every few hours: Over the next 24 hours, press down on the cabbage every so often with the jelly jar. As the cabbage releases its liquid, it will become more limp and compact and the liquid will rise over the top of the cabbage.

8. Add extra liquid, if needed: If after 24 hours, the liquid has not risen above the cabbage, dissolve 1 teaspoon of salt in 1 cup of water and add enough to submerge the cabbage.

9. Ferment the cabbage for 3 to 10 days: As it's fermenting, keep the sauerkraut away from direct sunlight and at a cool room temperature — ideally 65°F to 75°F. Check it daily and press it down if the cabbage is floating above the liquid.

Because this is a small batch of sauerkraut, it will ferment more quickly than larger batches. Start tasting it after 3 days — when the sauerkraut tastes good to you, remove the weight, screw on the cap, and refrigerate. You can also allow the sauerkraut to continue fermenting for 10 days or even longer. There's no hard-and-fast rule for when the sauerkraut is "done" — go by how it tastes.

While it's fermenting, you may see bubbles coming through the cabbage, foam on the top, or white scum. These are all signs of a healthy, happy fermentation process. The scum can be skimmed off the top either during fermentation or before refrigerating. If you see any mold, skim it off immediately and make sure your cabbage is fully submerged; don't eat moldy parts close to the surface, but the rest of the sauerkraut is fine.

10. Store sauerkraut for several months: This sauerkraut is a fermented product so it will keep for at least two months and often longer if kept refrigerated. As long as it still tastes and smells good to eat, it will be. If you like, you can transfer the sauerkraut to a smaller container for longer storage.

Recipe Notes

  • Sauerkraut with other cabbages: Red cabbage, napa cabbage, and other cabbages all make great sauerkraut. Make individual batches or mix them up for a multi-colored sauerkraut!

  • Canning sauerkraut: You can process sauerkraut for longer storage outside of refrigeration, but the canning process will kill the good bacterias produced by the fermentation process. See this tutorial from the National Center for Home Food Preservation for canning instructions.

  • Larger or smaller batches: To make larger or smaller batches of sauerkraut, keep same ratio of cabbage to salt and adjust the size of the container. Smaller batches will ferment more quickly and larger batches will take longer.

  • Hot and cold temperatures: Do everything you can to store sauerkraut at a cool room temperature. At high temperatures, the sauerkraut can sometimes become unappetizingly mushy or go bad. Low temperatures (above freezing) are fine, but fermentation will proceed more slowly.

 

 

Pics of the Week:

 

 

An under appreciated beauty - celeriac.

An overcast day - but nonetheless a pretty shot of a pastured life for our hens.  Here they are on a field of beans, peas, and oats.

December 14, 2016

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Cauliflower - Although the leaves and stem of the cauliflower are edible, they have a tougher texture and stronger flavor than the florets.  If you like, you can save them to use in soups and stews.

  • Beets - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Broccoleaf- Not sure about this ‘new’ veg? It’s the leaves of the broccoli plant and we cannot sing enough of broccoleaf’s praises! Great in stir frys, smoothies, sautees, soups, and more!  Use it like kale!

  • Arrowhead Cabbage - We affectionately call it “conehead” cabbage.  This variety’s delicate outer leaves make a good leaf for wraps.  

  • Spring Onions - These onions are sweeter and mellower than regular onions, but the greens are more intense in flavor than scallions. The bulbs can be red or white, depending on the varietal, and while they can be used in much the same way as regular bulb onions, they are great grilled, roasted whole, or used like pearl onions.

  • Butternut Squash - This delicious seasonal squash can be cooked in a variety of ways – baked or roasted, in a puree, in soups or stews, and as a sweet addition to other hearty winter dishes.

  • Sage - The perfect compliment to winter squash.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Romanesco, Kale, Beets, Carrots, Onions, Cabbage

 

News

We welcomed 850 new baby chicks to the farm last Friday!

Born just a couple hours prior at Vega Farms in Davis, our chicks were welcomed with probiotic water, a special feed mash, and some loving human hands.  They making themselves at home in our new coop until we get our new mobile brooder built next summer.  

 

Recipe

Roasted Beet and Winter Squash Salad With Walnuts (Serves 6)

What a colorful, bright winter dish with two items from this week’s box!  Thank you to The New York Times for this recipe.

  • 2 lbs kabocha or butternut squash

  • 1 bunch beets, with greens

  • 2 tbsp red wine or sherry vinegar

  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar

  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 1 small garlic clove, minced or put through a press

  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 tbsp walnut oil

  • 3 tbsp chopped walnuts (about 1 1/2 oz)

  • 2 tbsp mixed chopped fresh herbs, like parsley, mint, tarragon, chives

Roast the beets. Preheat the oven to 425°F.  Cut the greens off of the beets, leaving about 1/2 inch of the stems attached. Scrub the beets and place in a baking dish or ovenproof casserole. Add about 1/4 inch water to the dish. Cover tightly with a lid or foil, and bake 35 to 40 minutes, until the beets are tender. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. If not using right away, refrigerate in a covered bowl

Line another roasting pan with foil or parchment and brush with olive oil. Peel the squash and cut in 1/2-inch thick slices. Toss with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil and salt to taste and place on the baking sheet. Roast for 20 to 30 minutes, turning halfway through, until lightly browned and tender. You can do this at the same time that you roast the beets, but watch carefully if you need to put the baking sheet on a lower shelf. Remove from the heat and allow to cool

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil while you stem and wash the greens. Add salt to the water, and blanch the greens for 1 minute or until tender. Transfer the greens to a bowl of cold water, then drain and squeeze out the water. Chop coarsely

Mix together the vinegars, garlic, salt, pepper, the remaining olive oil and the walnut oil. When the beets are cool enough to handle, trim the ends off, slip off their skins, cut in half, then slice into half-moon shapes. Toss with half the salad dressing. In a separate bowl, toss the roasted squash with the remaining dressing

Place the greens on a platter, leaving a space in the middle. Arrange the beets and squash in alternating rows in the middle of the platter. Sprinkle on the fresh herbs and the walnuts. If desired, sprinkle on crumbled feta. Serve.

Advance preparation: Roasted beets and squash will keep for 4 to 5 days in the refrigerator. Cooked beet greens will keep for about 3 days, and can be reheated. The salad will hold in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, but it's prettiest when served right away.

 

Pics of the Week:

Making friends

December 7, 2016

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Broccoli - To blanch: Prepare a bowl of ice water and have it next to the stove. Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Add a heaping tablespoon of salt. Add the broccoli florets and cook until crisp-tender, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and plunge immediately in the ice water. Let the water come back to a boil, then cook the stems until they are also crisp-tender, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. If you would like softer vegetables, cook for an additional 30 seconds.  Uses for blanched broccoli: Vegetable platters, cold salads, frittatas, and other casseroles.

  • Beets - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Celeriac - How to spiralize celeriac: After peeling and before spiralizing, soak it briefly in water with a little vinegar or lemon juice to prevent cut surfaces from darkening.  Raw celery root can have an intense flavor and dominate other ingredients, so pair it with other strongly flavored fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, beets, and apples.  Fresh and firm celeriac roots will ensure that you get the best tasting noodles possible.  Wash and peel the root, making sure to remove all whiskery parts, nubs and thick skin.  Place the unit on the countertop and press down on the spiralizer to engage the suction cups and secure.  Insert the blade cartridge you’d like to use, make sure that it clicks into place.  Cut flat ends on each end of the root.  Place the center of the root onto the cylinder part of the blade and press the teeth of the handle into the other side of it.  Take hold of the handle on the bottom (the horizontal one) with one hand and then spin the handle with the teeth to spiralize. Press steady with forward pressure, using the handle that you’re gripping, for best results.  Before dressing up the noodles, take a scissors when you’re done spiralizing and cut the noodles into manageable sized pieces.  Just grab a bunch of noodles and roughly snip.  Or enjoy that never-ending noodle!  You can make noodles in advance, they should keep for 5-7 days in the fridge, without sauce.

  • Batavian Lettuce - For 2-minute creamy salad dressing: Whisk together 1 tsp Dijon mustard (or other grainy mustard), 1 ½ tbsp mayonnaise, pinch salt, pinch sugar, and fresh pepper (to taste) until combined. Add 1 tbsp champagne vinegar and whisk until smooth. Toss with salad and serve.

  • Kale - It works well with sweet potatoes, winter squashes, and cauliflower as well as with hearty grains such as arborio rice or farro.

  • Onions - Onions release a gas called lachrymatory factor (LF), which causes tearing. To lessen the rate of LF production, try chilling the onion for an hour before cutting.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Broccoli, Beets, Batavian Lettuce, Spring Onions, Butternut Squash

 

 

News

Tomorrow we tend our hedgerows planted last fall and replant any of the species that didn’t survive their first year.  This is in partnership with the Natural Resources Conservation Service and the SLEWS program at the Center for Land Based Learning.  Keep an eye out on social media and next week’s newsletter for more pics.

 

 

Recipe

Beet Gnocchi  (Serves 4)

If you’re okay with the two hour prep time, this dish is a vibrant, showstopping red delight!  Look below for sauce ideas…. Thank you to Mark Bittman and The New York Times for the recipe.

  • 1 lb starchy potatoes

  • ½ lb beets

  • 2 tbsp olive oil

  • Salt and pepper

  • ¾ c all-purpose flour, plus more as needed

Heat the oven to 400°F. Bake potatoes until tender, about an hour. Immediately split them open to let the steam escape. When you can handle the potatoes, scoop out their flesh.

While the potatoes bake, peel and grate the beets. Put the oil in a small skillet or saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the beets, season to taste, and cook, stirring occasionally, until very soft, 25 to 35 minutes. Transfer to a food processor and purée until smooth.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Pass potato flesh through a ricer or food mill, stir in the beet purée, and season to taste. Sprinkle 1/4 cup flour on a clean counter or cutting board, and knead the potatoes with it, sprinkling in the remaining 1/2 cup flour, until the dough just comes together. Pinch off a piece of the dough, and boil it to make sure it will hold its shape. If it does not, knead in a bit more flour (no more than necessary), and try again; the gnocchi will float to the top and look a little raggedy when ready.

Roll a piece of the dough into a rope about 1/2-inch thick, then cut the rope into 1/2-inch lengths. Score each piece by rolling it along the tines of a fork; as each piece is ready, put it on a baking sheet lined with parchment or wax paper; do not allow the gnocchi to touch one another.

Add the gnocchi to the boiling water a few at a time, and gently stir; adjust the heat so the mixture doesn’t boil too vigorously. A few seconds after they rise to the surface, the gnocchi are done; remove them with a slotted spoon or mesh strainer, and finish with any of the sauces below: and finish with any of the following sauces:

Tomato Sauce: Cook a small chopped onion in olive oil until soft. Add minced garlic, 3 to 4 cups of chopped tomatoes, canned or fresh, and salt and pepper. Cook at a steady bubble until ‘‘saucy.’’ If the sauce becomes too thick, add a splash of the gnocchi cooking water before serving. Garnish with torn basil and/or grated Parmesan.

Brown Butter, Sage, and Parmesan: Put 4 tablespoons butter and a handful of fresh sage leaves (40 wouldn’t be too many) in a skillet over medium heat. Cook until the butter is light brown and the sage is sizzling, about 3 minutes. Toss with the gnocchi, some of their cooking water and loads of grated Parmesan.

Olive Oil and Garlic: Put at least a tablespoon of minced garlic in a puddle of olive oil, along with (optional) red-pepper flakes and/or chopped anchovies. Cook until the garlic just turns golden (but no more than that). Toss with the gnocchi, some of their cooking water and plenty of chopped parsley.

Bacon and Cream: Cook some chopped bacon, prosciutto or pancetta in a bit of olive oil over medium-low heat until nearly crisp. Stir in 1/2 cup heavy cream and a lot of pepper. Let the cream thicken slightly before adding the gnocchi.

 

 

Pics of the Week:

Fall spread at the Grand Lake Farmers' Market.

Rex Dufour of NCAT organizing 1000 hedgerow plants into planting groups.

November 30, 2016

What’s in the box this week?

Standard Shares include

  • Broccoli - To blanch: Prepare a bowl of ice water and have it next to the stove. Bring a large pot of water to a rapid boil. Add a heaping tablespoon of salt. Add the broccoli florets and cook until crisp-tender, 1 to 1 1/2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and plunge immediately in the ice water. Let the water come back to a boil, then cook the stems until they are also crisp-tender, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. If you would like softer vegetables, cook for an additional 30 seconds.  Uses for blanched broccoli: Vegetable platters, cold salads, frittatas, and other casseroles.

  • Beets - For cooked, grated beets: Preheat oven to 375℉. Place 2 lbs medium beets (well scrubbed and trimmed) on a large piece of parchment-lined aluminum foil. Drizzle with 1 tbsp oil. Season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper. Wrap beets, enclosing them tightly. Place on a baking sheet, and roast until fork-tender, about 1 hour. Remove from oven; set aside to cool.  Peel beets when cool enough to handle. Using the largest holes of a box grater, coarsely grate beets into a large bowl. Drizzle with 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar, and sprinkle with 1 tbsp sugar. Toss to combine. Fold in ¼ c sour cream, and serve.

  • Radicchio - The star of this week’s recipe!

  • Batavian Lettuce - For lemon-anchovy vinaigrette: Cut all peel and white pith from two lemons; discard. Working over a medium bowl, cut lemons along sides of membranes to release segments into bowl. Squeeze in juice from membranes and discard membranes.  Mix in 4 anchovy fillets packed in oil (drained, finely chopped), ½ c olive oil, and ¼ tsp crushed red pepper flakes, breaking up lemon segments against the side of the bowl with a spoon; season with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.  Dressing can be made 4 days ahead. Transfer to a jar; cover and chill.

  • Lacinato Kale - Saute it with sausages!  Brown split sausages (such as linguica or chorizo) in a skillet. Add 2 garlic cloves, a pinch of red-pepper flakes, and some olive oil; saute for 30 seconds. Add 1 bunch washed kale (still wet); cook until tender, about 8 minutes. Season with salt.

  • Spring Onions - Caramelize these delicious onions and bake them in a savory tart – this will bring out their natural sweetness and complex flavors.

Egg Shares include eggs from our certified organic, pasture-raised, happy hens.

 

Vegetable Forecast

Purple/cheddar Cauliflower, Kale, Beets, Onions, Celeriac, Batavian Lettuce

 

News

We hope you have fully digested the Thanksgiving holiday and are ready for some hearty winter greens!  

 

Recipe

Lentils, Radicchio, and Walnuts with Honey (Serves 4)

Yotam Ottolenghi does it again in The Guardian with vegetarian delights.  He says that the bitterness of the radicchio balances the sweetness of the honey, but if it’s too much for you, feel free to leave the honey out.

  • 1 cup French green lentils

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 5 tablespoons honey

  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

  • ½ teaspoon turmeric

  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 6 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 head radicchio

  • 2 oz. pecorino cheese

  • ⅔ cup basil leaves, coarsely chopped

  • ⅔ cups dill leaves, coarsely chopped

  • ⅔ cups flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped

  • Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 325℉

Place lentils in a small saucepan and cover with water that raises above lentils by 2 inches. Add bay leaves and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Drain well, remove bay leaves and return to the pan.

While the lentils are cooking, prepare the walnuts. Pour half of the honey in a small bowl and microwave for 30 seconds. Add pepper flakes, turmeric and ¼ teaspoon salt. Pour in walnut and stir well to coat. Bake the walnuts on a sheet of parchment paper for 20 minutes, stirring once. As soon as the walnuts are cool enough to handle, remove them from the parchment paper to a plate, so that they don't stick.

In a small mason jar or bowl, combine the remaining honey, 3 tablespoons olive oil, vinegar, ¾ teaspoon salt and pepper. Shake well or whisk together until the ingredients come together. Stir into the lentils while they are still warm.

Pour the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil into a large skillet and place over high heat. Cut the radicchio into 8 spears and place the wedges in the hot oil. Cook for about 1 minute per side and transfer to a large serving bowl. Pour the lentils over the radicchio and top with the fresh herbs, pecorino and walnuts. Stir gently and serve warm or at room temperature.

 

Pics of the Week:

Sean at the San Rafael Farmers' Market with our Fall bounty.