Saturday, July 28, 2012

Sunday - Week # 9




Hi,

I hope you are doing well. This week, our small shares have green tomatoes, fresh candy onion, red kale, green bell peppers, spaghetti squash, and string beans. Our full shares have all of that and heirloom tomatoes, basil, and eggplant in addition.

New in the small shares this week are our green bell peppers, spaghetti squash, fresh candy onions and green tomatoes. We have many varieties of peppers starting to come in strong, and you should expect to receive a different kind almost every week for the rest of the season. This week, we have included the first of our bell peppers; which I trust you are already acquainted with. We have also included a spaghetti squash in each share. These are the first of our winter squash, and you should expect to receive a different variety of those almost every week for the rest of the season as well (we grow 12). Spaghetti squash have a very unique, almost magical-seeming texture to them. Cook them by slicing in half from tip to tip, spoon out the seends, put some water in a baking tray and bake them, with the exposed flesh facing down, for about half an hour at 350, or until tender--you can turn it while it's baking too, just make sure it doesn't dry out. Once it cools a little, take a fork to the flesh in a perpendicular manner and drag out the strings--it will be just like strands of spaghetti. Do not eat the rind. Serve with your favorite pasta sauce, or do anything you would normally do with noodles with it. You can also cook the seeds, just salt and roast them with some oil at the same time. They make a wonderful snack, and can stay in a bowl on the countertop and be eaten for some time. The fresh candy onions are pretty much exactly as they sound; since they are fresh, they have a slightly sharper flavor and texture, and this is a sweet variety, so it is especially good cooked or seared.

We have also included some of our first field-started tomatoes of the season; which I'm sure you will notice are still green. This is just a special thing we will do once at the begginning of tomato season and again when the first frost comes. Many of you might be thinking that we have included tomatoes for some time; so why are these just coming in. Just so you know, the heirloom tomatoes we have included were all started very early as seedlings in our farmers' homes and greenhouses. Our tomatoes started in the fields are just coming into season now, and as they do, we will have lots more varieties and volume to include in the shares for you--so you should expect to receive more tomatoes almost every week from now through the middle of October as well. Green tomatoes have a crisply tart flavor and a firm texture--they should be pan fried (with bread crumbs), grilled, or broiled to soften up. Add a little salt and pepper and/or vinegar, and you've got yourself some delicious fried green tomatoes.

New this week in our full shares is some of our first eggplant of the season. I hope you are all familiar with eggplant, it has a light flavor and a spongy texture that makes it great in saucy foods. Popular preparations include eggplant parmesan, ratatouille, baba ghanoush, and moussaka.

There is an incredible amount of new produce coming into season right now, and you should expect a lot of new items in the weeks to come. We plan on continuing to rotate through our many varieties of beans, peppers, tomatoes, beets, potatoes, onions, greens, summer squash, winter squash and melons from now through almost the end of the season. For our small share members, I know many of you feel we have included too many greens/lettuces so far. We are planning on continuing to include one green or lettuce in your shares each week, but not more than that throughout the summer. We also have some of our first items coming out of season right now--we will not have any more lettuce for at least a month, and as much as 2 months--it doesn't fare well in the hottest months of summer, but will be back in the fall. We also will probably not have any more broccoli or cauliflower, at least until the fall.  

Please remember to return your bags.

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

Enjoy!

-Mark


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