Week #1 (6/2/15 & 6/5)

This week your basket contains: snap peas, WALLA WALLA ONIONS, new potatoes, spinach, CARROTS, zucchini (full shares only), kohlrabi, and lettuce.

Welcome to our 26th year of subscription farming!  We are very excited to be growing food for you for the next year.  The plastic bags we use are compostable but NOT recyclable.  If you would like us to re-use your bags, please wash them out, write your name on them, and return them to us in your empty basket.  If you don’t put your name on the bags and they get separated from your named basket, we can’t reuse them. Some people also like us to use cloth bags (either homemade or commercially made).  Again, write your name on them and leave them for us in your empty basket. These weekly notes are also posted to our web site (see address below). The password for the recipe section of our web site is always printed in the footer of the weekly notes.

Speaking of empty baskets, if you want your full basket placed in a particular location, just leave your empty basket there and we will leave the full one there.  On hot days, if you leave out a cooler we will transfer your veggies from the basket to the cooler.

The salad mix is NOT table ready.  While we do wash and rinse the greens before we put them in the bags, we are not able to guarantee that all the soil and/or bugs are out of all the leaves.  The best way to rinse your greens to insure that no stowaway slugs remain is to dissolve 2 tsp. of salt in a little warm water in the bottom of your sink.  Fill the sink about half full with the coldest water and add the greens.  It is best if there is enough water to float all of the greens.  Swish the greens gently and let them sit in the water for five minutes or so.  Gently lift the greens from the water so as not to disturb any soil that has settled to the bottom of the sink and either pat them dry with a towel or spin them dry in a salad spinner.

We are very pleased to have the first carrots of summer.  These Mokum carrots were planted in early February in one of our hoop houses.  We choose this variety for hoop house planting because they are very crisp and tasty and seem to grow better indoors than other varieties.  For better storage, take off the greens leaving 1/8th of an inch of stem on the root and place the roots in a plastic bag or Tupperware before refrigerating.

The kohlrabi (those purple and/or green sputnik looking things) are tender, sweet and very similar to broccoli stems.  They need to be peeled and can be used in stir-fries, sliced like carrot sticks or grated raw in green salads.  If you’ve never tried them before, eat them raw and fresh for the best flavor.  They can also be used in any recipe calling for turnip for a milder flavor.  This is our favorite kohlrabi salad lately.

AVOCADO AND KOHLRABI SALAD

3 medium kohlrabi, bulbs

2 ripe avocados

3 tablespoons lime juice

1 scallion, chopped

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Salt & fresh ground pepper

1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

Peel the kohlrabi by cutting off the top and bottom, and peeling with a potato peeler. Cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices, then cut the slices into chunks. Place in a bowl. Cut avocados in half lengthwise. Tap the blade of a heavy knife in the pit, twist to remove, and discard. Quarter and peel avocados, then cut into chunks. Drizzle lime juice over avocados to prevent browning and to add flavor; set aside. Whisk together green onion, balsamic vinegar, oil, garlic powder, and salt and pepper to taste. Pour dressing over kohlrabi and mix to cover. Mix together the chunked avocados and the kohlrabi mixture. Make a bed of the salad on four plates, and sprinkle each with feta cheese.

We have been learning to grow Walla Walla onions over the past several years (you only get one shot per year) and have the best ones yet.  After having heavy losses when planted outside, we seeded these onions in July and transplanted them into a hoop house bed in September.  Not only do these onions have a reputation for mild sweet flavor, we love how early we are able to give you good sized onions. At this stage, the leaves and neck can be used like scallions as well.  Let us know what you think of them.  We will be using Walla Wallas on a version of this pizza at our first subscriber day (see below). The ingredient list is more of a suggestion than a prescription.  Add, subtract and substitute at will.

PIZZA PRIMAVERA

2-3 fresh onions, thinly sliced

3 garlic cloves thinly sliced

2 Tbs. olive oil

6 large plum tomatoes (canned or frozen)

2 zucchini, thinly sliced

¼ – ½ cup sliced black olives

½ cup thinly sliced mushrooms

1 cup grated mozzarella or 8-oz. soft goat cheese

In a heavy saucepan or casserole, cook the onions and garlic in the olive oil over low heat until thoroughly softened and lightly golden; approx. 20 min.  Add chopped tomatoes and cook, stirring often until the mixture is very thick; approx. 15 mins.  Season with salt and pepper and let cool.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees, divide the dough into two pieces and roll each piece out into an 8 inch crust.  Place a prepared crust on a lightly oiled cookie sheet, spread with the onion mixture, scatter zucchini, mushrooms, olives etc. and top with your choice of cheese.  If using the goat chesse or other soft cheese scatter in small pieces.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is golden.  Can be served hot or at room temperature.

If you are on Facebook, make sure you like us to get updates on farm activities and special offers on fruit and other extras.  We also put this information on the blog section of our web site.  Right now we are offering a full flat of strawberries for $30 (a $6 savings) while supplies last.

WE HAVE SET THE DATE FOR OUR FIRST SUBSCRIBER PARTY FOR THE NEW YEAR. On Sunday, June 7th from 11:00 to 3:00 we will have our pizza oven cranking out pizzas as our contribution to a pot luck lunch.  We’ll have tours of the farm and a chance to meet other subscribers and share a meal.

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