Saturday, June 9, 2012

Sunday - Week # 2

I can't believe we are already in our second week. I hope you have enjoyed your first share and are ready for a whole new round of produce tomorrow. This week, we have another wide assortment of green vegetables to share, including collard greens, kale, rainbow chard, red dazzler and romaine lettuces, scallions, garlic scapes, and spelt berries.

Some of you might notice that your greens have odd tears in them. That is due to a really bad hailstorm we had on the farms last weekend. You can read more about it here. The greens are still perfectly tasty and good to eat. The storm affected each of our farms a little differently, and it will take some time to see how much it will affect all of the different produce, but it has destroyed a lot of our lettuces and greens and set back most of our other vegetables. We normally deliver our produce twice a week to local restuarants and grocery stores, and had to cancel all of that this week, and will probably have to for another week or two since we don't have enough produce for them right now. I can assure you that what we do have has all been reseved for you, since our CSA is our top priority. Depending on how things turn out, the next couple weeks might be a little 'light'; in which case we will make up for it with more produce later in the season. Over the summer, I'm sure you will come to understand more of the ups and downs of a growing season with us--it's all part of the CSA experience!

We were still able to add a few new items this week that I think you will really enjoy. Garlic scapes are one of my personal favorite items of the season, and I know many of our customers agree. They are the shoots of the plant and have that delicious garlic flavor, without too much of a raw-garlic spice. You can slice them up and eat them raw or cook them sliced or whole--if you're cooking them whole, treat them like you would thin asparagus. They will only be in season for a very brief time, so make sure to enjoy them while you can. You can also feel especially good about eating them, as their cultivation helps ensure the garlic plants grow bigger, tastier bulbs for later in the season.

In our full shares this week we also added our rainbow chard; which is my favorite of all our greens. I like it sauteed or stir-fried with some oil and vinegar, salt and pepper. We've also included spelt berries in the full shares this week. If you don't know, spelt is a grain that's closely related to wheat, but has a slightly different, nuttier flavor. It is also higher in protein and lower in gluten than wheat. It was a staple crop in Europe and the Middle East for thousands of years and has only dissapeared from our diets in the last century due to the rise of industrial food. It is growing in popularity among organic growers though, since it requires less fertilizer than wheat and our customers tend to really enjoy it. The berries are simply the kernel of the plant, without the hull. If you grind them (you should technically use a grain mill, but if you are careful, you can use a coffee grinder or food processor) you will have whole spelt flour. Use the whole berries in oatmeal, soups, pilafs, or risotto.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me.



1 comment:

  1. Hi Mark! Enjoying the eggs and the smell of the wheatberry bread toasting as I write! I am looking forward to the Swiss Chard as it is one of my favorites! I usually add it to risotto and maybe this time I will add the garlic scapes at the last minute of cooking to add some great flavor!

    I am thinking I could mix the fennel, tomato and oregano together and was hoping to see a recipe....anyone out there have one? Would love some ideas as I've never cooked fennel before.