October 2, 2013

 What’s in the box this week?

As the first boxes of fall arrive, the seasons’ transition makes for interesting variety and combinations.  Savor these last bits of summer and the peak of pepper season. As it is still fairly warm during the days, please get those greens in the fridge asap.

Standard Shares include

  • Okra – Chop ‘em up for this week’s Vegetarian Gumbo recipe!
  • Collard Greens – Great in the gumbo recipe, or with other veggies in an egg breakfast scramble.

  • Tomatillos – After peeling, it is best to wash the tomatillos with water and a tiny bit of dish soap; this removes the tacky residue that can make your dish taste bitter.

  • Poblano Peppers – With a mild heat, these peppers are perfect for stuffing with cheese.

  • Mixed Hot Peppers – To dramatically cut down on heat, de-seed the peppers before you add them to your dish.  If you want more kick, leave them in.

  • Valley Girl Tomatoes – Yes, you can (and preserve)!  If you can’t get enough of these delicious tomatoes, there’s still time to order 20lb boxes to get you through the long, tomato-less California winter. Add a box through the Online Market for only $30!

  • Mixed Bell Peppers Add some color and flavor to your Gumbo.

  • Garlic – Storing garlic uncovered is ideal. Just be sure there is plenty of dry air and little light to inhibit sprouting. To avoid mold, do not refrigerate or store garlic in plastic bags.

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

Preserve Shares The debut of SAY HAY ROASTED SALSA! Woo hoo!

Vegetable Forecast  Kale, Rainbow Chard, Tomatoes, Mix Bell Peppers, Cayenne Pepper, Basil (with roots!), and Sun Dried Senise Peppers

Don’t forget – you can always add extra items to your order at our Online Market


If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the clip of Chris on Sac 10 News (from 9/22) celebrating Sacramento’s Farm to Fork Week and spreading the word about Say Hay's CSA program here!

Pics of the week (1) Valley Girl tomatoes are being dried out as we shift the water resources to fall crops.  This makes them smaller but more intensely flavored.  (2) May & Dusty roll up their pants and get dirty in the slough.  Here they constructed a dam made of pallets and feed bags to try and catch and reserve any remaining water from Clear Lake and prepare for the (hopefully) coming rains.  This is one of the drier years in recent memory after a very dry winter and those of us that are dependent on rainwater catchment are conserving water as much as possible.  (3) The greens. How quick they grow!  We’re using the water we have to keep our fall crops healthy.  Do a rain dance for the farm, please!


This Vegetarian Gumbo Recipe is perfect for this time of year – it incorporates many of the veggies of this week’s box.  Other than the filé powder (prounced Fee-lay), you most likely have the other ingredients at your disposal.  Filé powder is a seasoning made from the ground, dried leaves of the sassafras tree; it’s an integral part of the region’s cooking, used to thicken and flavor gumbos and other dishes).  While some people swear by filé, others are comfortable leaving it out, so make it whichever way you’d like.

  • 2 pounds collard greens, stems removed and chopped
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil + 2 tbsp
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 onions, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 4 stalks celery, chopped
  • 5 or 6 Valley Girl Tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup hot sauce
  • 1 tsp filé powder  (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (or to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped okra
  • 1 16 ounce can kidney beans
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups rice, pre-cooked

In a large soup pot, boil the greens in two cups water for about ten minutes. Cover and allow to steam for 5 to 10 more minutes. Reserve the cooking water.

In a separate small pot, whisk together the 1/4 cup oil and flour over low heat to form a roux, stirring continuously for about 10 to 15 minutes. Once it turns a dark reddish brown, remove from the heat and set aside.

In a large soup or stock pot, sautee the onions, bell pepper, celery and tomatoes for a few minutes in the 2 tablespoons of oil, until just soft. Reduce the heat and add the hot sauce, file powder, cayenne, thyme, oregano, parsley and garlic and cook, stirring for one or two more minutes.

Add the flour and oil roux and the vegetable broth and stir well to combine. Add the cooking water from the collard greens and the bay leaves. Bring to a simmer, and allow to cook for 15 minutes.

Add the collard greens, okra, kidney beans, and rice and cook for 5 more minutes. Remove bay leaves before serving.