Summer CSA Open For New Members

join us 2016 2

Hello from Pitchfork & Crow!

Happy 2016!  The countdown to summer vegetables has begun…

Our planting plan is finished and the seeds have mostly arrived.  We sowed the first seeds of the season last weekend!  Now we’re ready to begin accepting members for the 2016 Summer CSA season!  Do you know where your vegetables are coming from this summer?  We’d love to have you join us for the 2016 Summer CSA season!

These are the 2016 Summer/Fall CSA program basics:

  • 27 weeks – running from the week of May 24th thru November 22nd.
  • $674 share price – The cost of the share is $25 per week.  Using farmers market prices, last year’s share contents had an average share value of $34.
  • Four pick-up options!Salem pick-ups are on Tuesdays at the Willamette Heritage Center.  Lebanon pick-ups are on Wednesdays.  In Lebanon choose to pick-up at the Farm just outside Lebanon or at the COMP-NW campus or Lebanon Community Hospital in town.
  • Two pick-up types too! – Market-style pick-up at the farm and in Salem (Vegetables will be displayed like a market booth with quantities listed rather than prices, letting you choose your vegetables.)  Pre-boxed shares at the COMP-NW campus and Lebanon Community Hospital for quick and easy pick-ups.
  • This season we’ve added an online payment option for your convenience!

You can find photos of all our past shares over on our Flickr site!

Click here to see the full Summer CSA details .  We hope you’re looking forward to summer and fall veggies as much as we are!  Let us know if you have any questions.

Thanks for your support!

Carri Heisler and Jeff Bramlett

winter csa share – week 5

winter share week 5

Welcome to the 5th week of the Pitchfork & Crow 2015/2016 Winter CSA!

Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Rutabaga
  • Carrots
  • Red Cabbage
  • Daikon Radishes
  • Lacinato Kale Tops
  • Garlic
  • Radicchio – We’ve been enjoying radicchio leaves in burritos and made into a quick slaw for topping roasted potatoes this week. 
  • Onion
  • Winter Squash Jamboree – We grew several varieties of really large winter squash this past year.  These are long storing, great tasting, but low yielding varieties.  We’re giving you halves, as we don’t enough to go around, but also we decided you probably didn’t want a whole giant winter squash.  Varieties include Oregon Homestead, Piacentina, and Marina di Chioggia.
  • Cilantro
  • Mixed Dry Beans – A mix of dry bean varieties and our leftover pole beans from last summer!
  • Dried Apples

About the Feb. 9th/10th Pick-up:  We’ll be out of town at a farmer retreat for a portion of the next pick-up.  Please note the pick-up changes for your location below.

Salem Members:  We’d like to  move the Salem CSA pick-up to the previous Sunday, February 7th.  We’ll be set up at our usual spot at the Willamette Heritage Center during the usual 4pm-6pm time frame.  Please let us know if you can’t make it to the Sunday pick-up and we’ll make arrangements to deliver it to you.

COMP-NW Medical School Members:  We plan to deliver on Wednesday February 10th as usual, except boxes will be dropped at the school by 3pm instead of 1pm.  Please let us know if this is a problem and we can arrange for an alternative pick-up.

On-Farm Pick-Up Members:  Regularly scheduled pick-up at the farm.  We’ll see you as usual between 4pm and 6pm on Wednesday February 10th.

roofs and puddles

Since we last met Jeff has been hard at work in all kinds of weather getting some infrastructure projects crossed off the To Do list.  He finished up re-roofing the well house and attached greenhouse.  (A siding upgrade will have to wait a little longer. )

He then moved on to cleaning up the propagation house in anticipation of this past weekend’s first seed sowing of the year.  First he realized we had left our half-threshed dry beans in a flood zone inside the prop house.  He set to work saving them and save them he did!  He finished threshing the beans and moved them all through the dehydrator to return them to their original “dry” bean state.  Hurrah!

Finally he removed the old torn plastic off the prop. house, added wood purlins to keep the plastic from tearing against the structure again, pressure washed all the pallet tables inside the house, and attached the new plastic.  Woah!

All the while I was paperworking away on all the paperworky things that seem to come up at the beginning of the year, like dealing with crop plan spreadsheets and wrangling our bookkeeping and taxes into shape.

seeding

After so many days spent filling out forms and double checking numbers and re-formatting spreadsheets I was glad to realize we planned to sow our first seeds this past weekend.  A few hours spent outside with seeds was a welcome change.  On Sunday we began the seed starting season with a few flats of spinach.  Soon we’ll be sowing bok choy, peas, onions, lettuce, peppers, tomatoes, and eggplants!  The cycle begins again.

Seeds orders are rolling in, the planting plan has been printed, and we’re ready to accept new CSA members!  We appreciate past members who jumped on the sign-up right away when we made the announcement last week via email.  We’re looking forward to a great season ahead and hope you’ll consider joining us.  You can find all the details and a sign-up form on the Summer CSA page.

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you in two weeks!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Scallops with Cilantro Sauce and Asian Slaw

  • 1 large carrot, cut into julienne
  • 1/3 lb daikon radish, peeled and cut into julienne
  • 1 unpeeled Granny Smith apple, cut into julienne
  • 1 scallion, cut into julienne (with a knife)
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar (not seasoned)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons minced fresh serrano chile
  • 1 teaspoon Asian fish sauce
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 lb sea scallops, tough muscle discarded from each
  • Special equipment: an adjustable-blade slicer with julienne blade

Toss together carrot, radish, apple, scallion, vinegar, 1 tablespoon sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a bowl. Let stand, tossing occasionally, 15 minutes to soften.

Stir together cilantro, lime juice, chile, fish sauce, 3 tablespoons oil, and remaining 1/2 tablespoon sugar, or to taste.

Pat scallops dry. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt. Heat remaining tablespoon oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, and sauté scallops, turning over once, until golden and just cooked through, about 4 minutes total.

Drain slaw, discarding liquid. Divide among 6 plates and top with scallops. Drizzle with cilantro sauce.

From Epicurious via Gourmet, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/scallops-with-cilantro-sauce-and-asian-slaw-234640

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Frenchy’s Pasties

  • 12 ounces top sirloin steak, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup chopped peeled russet potato
  • 1 cup chopped peeled rutabaga
  • 3/4 cup chopped peeled carrot
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 large garlic clove, chopped
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream
  • 1 15-ounce package refrigerated pie crusts (2 crusts)

Using on/off turns, coarsely chop meat in processor. Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add potato, rutabaga, carrot, onion, parsley, thyme and garlic. Sauté until vegetables are just tender, about 12 minutes. Add meat. Sauté until meat browns, about 10 minutes. Mix in cream. Season filling to taste with salt and pepper. Cool filling completely. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover; refrigerate.)

Preheat oven to 425°F. Unfold crusts on work surface. Spoon half of filling onto half of each crust. Fold other half of each crust over filling. Seal edges with fork. Transfer turnovers to baking sheet.

Bake turnovers until golden, about 30 minutes. Cut each in half and serve.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/frenchys-pasties-4409

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Grilled Turkey, Bacon, Radicchio, and Blue Cheese Sandwiches

  • 6 slices applewood-smoked bacon
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup crumbled Maytag blue cheese or other mild blue cheese
  • 4 1/2-inch-thick slices country-style white bread (about 5×3 inches)
  • 4 leaves radicchio
  • 6 ounces thinly sliced cooked turkey
  • 4 teaspoons butter, room temperature, divided

Cook bacon in large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to paper towels. Pour off fat from skillet; reserve skillet.

Mash mayonnaise and blue cheese in bowl to coarse puree; season with pepper. Place bread on work surface. Divide cheese mixture among bread slices, spreading evenly. Divide bacon, radicchio, and turkey between 2 bread slices. Top with remaining bread, cheese side down. Melt 2 teaspoons butter in reserved skillet over medium heat. Place sandwiches in skillet. Spread 2 teaspoons butter on top pieces of bread. Cover with lid that is slightly smaller than skillet. Cook sandwiches until lightly browned, about 4 minutes per side.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/grilled-turkey-bacon-radicchio-and-blue-cheese-sandwiches-236489

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winter csa share – week 4

winter csa week 4

Welcome to the 4th week of the Pitchfork & Crow 2015/2016 Winter CSA!

Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Superschmelz Kohlrabi – Don’t be afraid of the giant winter kohlrabi.  It’s delicious and wants to be eaten up raw, or fermented, or roasted, or in a savory pudding (recipe below). 
  • Carrots – Not as exciting as multi-colored carrots, these red cored chantenay are super sweet!
  • Red and Green Brussels Sprouts
  • Mountain Rose or Kennebec Potatoes – the Mountain Rose are red on the outside, pink on the inside!
  • Lacinato Kale
  • Garlic
  • Winter Salad Mix – a mix of castelfranco chicories and arugula this week
  • Onion
  • Delicata Winter Squash
  • Celeriac
  • Dried Plums – we grew them, we dried them, we bagged them

About the Feb. 9th/10th Pick-up:  We’ll be out of town at a farmer retreat for a portion of the first pick-up in February.  Please note the pick-up changes for your location below.

Salem Members:  We’d like to  move the Salem CSA pick-up to the previous Sunday, February 7th.  We’ll be set up at our usual spot at the Willamette Heritage Center during the usual 4pm-6pm time frame.  Please let us know if you can’t make it to the Sunday pick-up and we’ll make arrangements to deliver it to you.

COMP-NW Medical School Members:  We plan to deliver on Wednesday February 10th as usual, except boxes will be dropped at the school by 3pm instead of 1pm.  Please let us know if this is a problem and we can arrange for an alternative pick-up.

On-Farm Pick-Up Members:  Regularly scheduled pick-up at the farm.  We’ll see you as usual between 4pm and 6pm on Wednesday February 10th.

snow

Happy 2016!  We welcomed the new year with some time off and a quick trip to the snow.  Luckily there was more snow up in the hills than on the farm.  Then we hunkered down to get some work done here at the farm.  We’ve spent the last week+ pouring over seed company websites and making our planting plan for the upcoming season.  Starting with arugula and ending with winter squash, we go through each of the 50 crops we grow and review the varieties, timing, number of successions, and seed availability.  It takes too many hours for the two of us to wrangle together a plan, but by the end we have a couple of epic spreadsheets that include what we’ll plant, when we’ll plant it, and what seed needs to be purchased.

After so much time spent reviewing the past season there really aren’t many big changes to this year’s plan.  We are going to try to improve our spinach growing skills, have more heirloom tomatoes, and increase the number of weeks of sweet corn and melons.  Seed orders will be going in this week and we’ll be sowing seeds again before you know it!

beans and barn

We always seem to have plenty of projects that need doing.  Before digging into the planting plan we spent a day threshing the dry beans that have been hanging out in our propagation house since October.  We use the “beat them with a stick” method of threshing beans, which involves piles of dry bean plants on tarps, big sticks, and a sunny day.  We made quite a dent in the piles and hopefully they’ll be headed your way after a little more threshing and winnowing.  Hurrah for fresh dry beans!

I’ve mentioned in previous newsletters that we have some big building plans for this winter.  Jeff has been spending some time during planning breaks to re-roof our well house, a project that has been on the back burner for years.  I think the roof was leaking our first winter here between 2010 and 2011 when we covered it with temporary plastic and we’re finally getting around a more permanent fix!  Also, the kit for our new pole barn arrived last week.  Now that our epic indoor planning work is mostly done we’re excited to get back outside and build some stuff!

Needless to say we’re looking forward to the season ahead.  We’re finalizing 2016 Summer CSA details and will begin accepting members shortly.  Details coming soon!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you in two weeks!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

A couple of years ago a winter CSA member clued us in to kohlrabi pudding.  It’s a delicious creamy concoction that has been a Thanksgiving potluck staple for us ever since.

Dairy Hollow House Kohlrabi Pudding

  • Cooking spray
  • 2 to 3 small kohlrabi, stem, root and ends trimmed, peeled and quartered
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 ounces neufchâtel reduced-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • ½ cup low-fat milk, buttermilk, yogurt, light sour cream, oat or rice milk, or, if feeling devil-may-care and you have it on hand, half and half or heavy cream
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon Pickapeppa sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 or 4 gratings of nutmeg
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • ¾ cup (6 ounces) finely grated Parmesan cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Spray a 9-inch square baking dish or six individual 6-ounce ramekins with cooking spray. Set aside.

3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add the kohlrabi and cook until slightly softened, 3 to 5 minutes. Place in a food processor and puree. Measure out 3 cups of the puree, saving leftovers for another use (such as a chilled soup). Set the puree aside.

4. Place the eggs with the neufchâtel, milk, cornstarch, Pickapeppa, salt, nutmeg, and pepper in the food processor. Buzz until very smooth. Add the 3 cups puree and half of the Parmesan and buzz to incorporate. Taste and, if necessary season with more pepper.

5. Pour the pudding mixture into the prepared baking dish or into the individual ramekins. Place the dish or ramekins in a larger pan with hot water to come ½ inch up the sides of the dish or ramekins. Place the pan in the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes.

6. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over the top. Return to the oven and continue baking until the cheese is melted and golden and the pudding is firm, browned, and does not stick to your finger when you touch its surface, another 20 to 30 minutes. Serve, hot or warm, cut into squares or inverted out of the ramekins.

From Cookstr via Passionate Vegetarian by Crescent Dragonwagon, http://www.cookstr.com/recipes/dairy-hollow-house-kohlrabi-pudding

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Sauteed Kale with Kohlrabi

  • 1 1/4 pound kohlrabi, bulbs peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 pounds kale (2 bunches), stems and center ribs discarded
  • 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup salted roasted pistachios, chopped
  • Equipment: an adjustable-blade slicer

Very thinly slice kohlrabi with slicer.

Whisk together lime zest and juice, 2 tablespoons oil, and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a large bowl. Toss kohlrabi with dressing.

Finely chop kale. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Sauté garlic until pale golden, about 30 seconds. Add kale by the handful, turning and stirring with tongs and adding more kale as volume in skillet reduces. When all of kale is wilted, sauté with 1/2 teaspoon salt until just tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cool to room temperature. Toss kale with kohlrabi and pistachios.

From Epicurious via Gourmet , http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/sauteed-kale-with-kohlrabi-354974

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Carrots and Brussels Sprouts

  • 2 tablespoons chopped shallot (from 1 medium)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 pound carrots, cut diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick pieces
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts, halved lengthwise
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar

Cook shallot in 2 tablespoons butter in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 1 to 2 minutes. Add carrots, Brussels sprouts, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables begin to brown, 3 to 4 minutes.

Add water and cover skillet, then cook over medium-high heat until vegetables are tender, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in vinegar, remaining tablespoon butter, and salt and pepper to taste.

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winter csa share – week 3

winter csa week 3

Welcome to the 3rd week of the Pitchfork & Crow 2015/2016 Winter CSA!

Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Curly Parsley
  • Hakurei Salad Turnips
  • Rainbow Carrots!
  • Savoy Cabbage
  • Kennebec Potatoes – evidently excellent for french fries, we love them any which way.
  • Leeks
  • Winter Salad Mix – a mix of castelfranco chicories, arugula, tatsoi, and mizuna
  • Shallots
  • Carnival Winter Squash
  • Apples
  • Dried Poblano Peppers (aka Ancho Chiles) – We weren’t quite ready to be done with this season’s amazing peppers.  Jeff dried the last of our poblanos and now we’re sharing them with you!  Searching the internet for Ancho Chile recipes returns a plethora of chile sauces and stuffed chile suggestions. Check out the recipe down below for re-hydrating them and adding them to smashed potatoes.  Whoa!

COMP-NW medical school members –  Rumor has it that the campus is closed this week.  We don’t want you to miss a pick-up!  If you’re in town this week, you can pick-up at the farm.  Come out to the farm Wednesday between 4pm and 6pm for the normal on-farm pick-up if you haven’t already arranged an alternative time.

We wish you many adventures and good times in 2016!  We’ve had a great year and are looking forward to what the next year, and next growing season, will bring us.  Here’s a quick list of some highlights from our 2015 farming year:

  • The Summer CSA grew to include 88 weekly shares, up 8 shares from last year.
  • We hired our first part-time employee for 10 hours a week through the summer season.
  • We consistently sold produce to LifeSource Natural Foods through the summer and beyond.
  • A new tractor and water wheel transplanter saved our backs from hours of bending over while transplanting.  Our tractor continues to be dependable and useful!  Hurrah!
  • We had our best yields ever for most crops, especially winter squash, apples, plums, peppers, and fall cauliflower!
  • Our first experience raising pigs was a success!
  • We added Lebanon Hospital & COMP-NW Medical School CSA pick-up sites for the first time and continued local CSA pick-ups into the Winter season.  Nearly half our winter shares pick-up in Lebanon!
  • We hit the first year of a two-year “$80,000 annual gross income goal” imposed on EFU (Exclusive Farm Use) zoned land before we can build a house on the farm.  If we can do it again next year, we can apply to the county to build a house!  Whoa!

We couldn’t have done any of this without your support this past year.  Many thanks for choosing to support our farm.  We hope you’ll decide to stick with us as we continue to learn, grow, and bring food to our community.

december

Winter is a slower season on the farm, but there’s always still plenty to do.  It’s time to begin our annual crop planning sessions and we’ll soon hunker down with seed catalogs and spreadsheets to knock out a plan for the upcoming growing season.  We also recently ordered a barn kit and January will see us figuring out just how handy we are at barn building.  There’s several other building, and cleaning, and ordering projects on our list of things to do.  Before long we’ll be starting seeds again!  Where does the time go?!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you in two weeks!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Smashed Baby Red Potatoes with Ancho Chiles and Dry Jack Cheese

  • 2 dried ancho chiles,* stemmed, halved, seeded
  • 3 pounds baby red potatoes (about 1 1/2 inches in diameter)
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 cup grated dry Jack cheese or 2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese and 1/3 cup grated sharp white cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Place chiles in small bowl; cover with hot water. Let stand until softened, about 15 minutes. Drain; chop. Transfer to mini processor; process to coarse puree (or finely chop chiles). Measure 1/4 cup puree and set aside (reserve any remaining puree for another use). DO AHEAD: Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill.

Bring potatoes to boil in large saucepan. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 16 minutes. Drain. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.

Heat oil in same saucepan over medium-low heat. Add 1/4 cup chile puree and garlic; stir 30 seconds. Add potatoes; stir to coat. Using back of wooden spoon, smash potatoes until largest pieces are about 1-inch cubes. Stir to heat through. Stir in cheese, 1/2 cup parsley, and cilantro. Transfer to bowl, sprinkle with remaining 1 tablespoon parsley, and serve.

*Available at many supermarkets and at specialty foods stores and Latin markets nationwide.

Ingredient Know-How:
Dry Jack is Monterey Jack-style cheese that’s been aged seven to ten months; it’s full-flavored, firm, and perfect for grating. Dry Jack can be found at some supermarkets and at specialty foods stores.
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Roasted Acorn and Delicata Squash Salad

  • 1 medium acorn squash (1 1/2 lb), quartered lengthwise, seeded, cut into 1/3″ slices
  • 1 medium delicata squash (1 lb), halved lengthwise, seeded, cut into 1/3″ slices
  • 2 tbsp plus 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 tsp unpasteurized apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup cooked wheat berries, drained, cooled
  • 2 oz small red or green mustard leaves (about 4 cups, loosely packed)
  • 2 oz arugula leaves (about 4 cups, loosely packed)
  • 1/4 cup thinly sliced red pearl onions or shallots
  • 4 oz aged goat cheese, rind removed, shaved
  • 1/4 cup Spiced Pumpkin Seeds

Preheat oven to 400°. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Place acorn squash slices on 1 tray and sliced delicata on the other. Toss each with 1 Tbsp oil, 1/4 tsp salt, and a pinch of pepper.

Place in oven and roast for 30 minutes; flip squash, rotate the trays, and roast for another 10-15 minutes or until just beginning to brown. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Whisk vinegar, 1/4 cup oil, 1/4 tsp salt, and pepper to taste in a bowl; stir in wheat berries.

Spread half of greens over a serving platter or bottom of a wide bowl, then add half of acorn squash, delicata squash, pearl onions, goat cheese, and pumpkin seeds. Drizzle with half of dressing; repeat with remaining ingredients and dressing. Toss lightly; serve immediately.

From Epicurious via At Home in the Whole Foods Kitchen by
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Baked Cabbage with Bacon

  • 3/4 pound bacon, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide strips
  • 1 1 1/2- to 1 3/4-pound cabbage, quartered, thinly sliced
  • 1 large leek (white and pale green parts only), thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 375°F. Place bacon in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Sauté until fat begins to render and bacon begins to brown, about 12 minutes. Add cabbage and leek. Sauté until cabbage wilts, about 10 minutes. Add water; bring to boil. Cover pot, reduce heat to medium and simmer until cabbage is tender, about 15 minutes. Uncover, increase heat and boil until all liquid evaporates, stirring often, about 10 minutes. Mix in parsley and green onions. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to 9-inch glass pie dish.

Melt butter in heavy medium skillet over medium-low heat. Add breadcrumbs; stir until crisp, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle breadcrumbs over cabbage mixture. Bake until heated through, about 10 minutes.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/baked-cabbage-with-bacon-1943

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winter csa share – week 2

winter csa share week 2

Welcome to the 2nd week of the Pitchfork & Crow 2015/2016 Winter CSA!  Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Sweet Potatoes –  We keep on trying to grow these sweets.  Some of them might look rough but we wanted to give out as many as we could.  Enjoy!
  • Cilantro!
  • Poblano Peppers – Not bad for a month in storage!  We chopped some up at lunch and loved their flavor.
  • Beets
  • Yukon Gold Potatoes – straight outta the damp earth!
  • Onions
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Mostly Kale Mix
  • Castelfranco Chicory – We’ve been topping sandwiches and stuffing burritos with this sweet/bitter chicory.  Castelfranco is probably our favorite from the chicory patch.  Perfect for salads or quickly sauteed and mixed with pasta.
  • Garlic
  • Pie Pumpkin
  • Butternut Winter Squash
  • Dried Apples – We grew them, we dried them!  They might make a fun addition to this Clif Bar recipe that we’ve been enjoying.

COMP-NW members –  Rumor has it that the campus is closed during our next pick-up on December 30th.  We don’t want you to miss a pick-up!  If you’re in town that week, you can pick-up at the farm.  If not, let’s arrange for you to pick-up when you return.  Please send us an email to let us know what you prefer before December 28th.

winter farm

When last we met we’d just seen the first real wintry weather on the farm.  Since then it’s been one deluge after another, but luckily the ice and snow have held off for the time being.  Our thoughts have been with friends who have seen creeks and rivers rise into their fields in the past week.  Each summer I dream of a farm on the river for mid-day swim breaks.  But each winter I’m thankful for this piece of land that’s safe from the overflowing waterways.

kallard

We woke up last Monday morning and realized it was the first week since May that we didn’t have a CSA harvest to get after.  Whoa.  What to do with ourselves.  Our week away was filled with the first of the winter farmer meetings, bowhunting, irrigation fixes, apple drying, a LifeSource harvest, and making plans for winter projects.  Evidently there was plenty to keep us busy without a CSA harvest in the mix.

Hopefully you had a great first week of the Winter CSA and are ready for more vegetables.  A member asked a question about the share size at the last pick-up that stuck with me.  He had been part of the weekly summer program and wondered if the bi-weekly winter pick-up was supposed to be two week’s worth of vegetables or was it a similar share size to a summer week.  I confirmed that we keep winter shares roughly the same size as summer shares, though the portions might be slightly larger during the winter.  We do bi-weekly shares in the winter to give us all some breathing room.  It allows us to take a little time away from the weekly routine of harvest and delivery.  It also allows members who spent the summer picking up weekly shares to catch up on the pile of winter squash on the counter and to not be overwhelmed with the less diverse offerings of the winter season.  As the season progresses we’d love to know your thoughts on the winter season and share sizes.  Would you like more vegetables in winter?  Would you prefer weekly pick-ups?

campout

We used our first weekend “off” to make a trek to the woods.  Getting away from the farm always gives us such perspective and an overnight, albeit a rainy and wet overnight, was just what we needed at the end of this long, hot season.  We camped out along the Little North Fork of the Santiam and explored the Opal Creek area.  We’ve got a lot of projects lined up for the farm this winter, but hopefully there will be more winter exploration of our amazing state too.  Stay tuned for adventure updates in addition to vegetable news.

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you in two weeks!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Poblano-Cilantro Relish

  • 3 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 3 poblano chiles
  • 1 cup cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice, plus more for seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Light a grill and preheat for for at least 10 minutes or preheat a grill pan. Skewer the garlic. Grill the garlic and poblanos over moderately high heat, turning frequently, until the garlic is charred and softened, about 5 minutes, and the poblanos are blackened all over, about 10 minutes.

Transfer the vegetables to a plate. Peel the garlic and transfer to a food processor. Peel the peppers, then core them and discard most of the seeds. Cut the peppers into strips and transfer to a food processor.

Pulse the garlic and peppers until coarsely chopped. Add the cilantro, fish sauce, sugar and 1 tablespoon of lime juice and pulse to a chunky puree. Add the vegetable oil and process until incorporated. Season the relish with more lime juice, if desired, and serve.

From Epicurious by Kristin Donnelly, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/poblano-cilantro-relish-51240010

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Kale and Potato Spanish Tortilla

  • 1 lb boiling potatoes
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 lb kale, center ribs discarded
  • 7 large eggs

Peel potatoes and cut into 1/3-inch dice (2 1/4 cups). Heat oil in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, then reduce heat to moderately low and cook potatoes, onion, and 1 teaspoon salt, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.

Blanch kale while potatoes cook:

Cook kale in a 4- to 6-quart pot of boiling salted water until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain in a colander and immediately transfer to a bowl of cold water to stop cooking. Drain again, squeezing handfuls of kale to extract excess moisture, then coarsely chop.

Add kale to potato mixture and cook, stirring occasionally, until kale is tender, about 5 minutes. Drain vegetables in colander set over a bowl, reserving drained oil, and cool 10 minutes.

Lightly beat eggs in a large bowl, then stir in vegetables, 1 tablespoon drained oil, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Add 1 tablespoon drained oil to skillet, then add egg mixture and cook over low heat, covered, until sides are set but center is still loose, about 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, 15 minutes.

Shake skillet gently to make sure tortilla is not sticking (if it is sticking, loosen with a heatproof plastic spatula). Slide tortilla onto a large flat plate, then invert skillet over tortilla and flip it back into skillet. Round off edge of tortilla with plastic spatula and cook over low heat, covered, 10 minutes more. Slide tortilla onto a plate and serve warm, cut into wedges.

From Epicurious via Gourmet, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/kale-and-potato-spanish-tortilla-107743

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Potato and Autumn Vegetable Hash

Herb oil:

  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary

Hash:

  • 6 1-to 1 1/4-inch-diameter golden baby beets with green tops attached (about 1 bunch)
  • 6 1- to 11/4-inch-diameter candy-canestriped (Chioggia) baby beets or golden baby beets with green tops attached (about 1 bunch)
  • 1 2-pound butternut squash, peeled, halved, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 4 cups)
  • 1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 3 cups)
  • 1 pound garnet yams or other yams (red-skinned sweet potatoes), peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

For herb oil:

Whisk all ingredients in small bowl. DO AHEAD: Can be made 4 days ahead. Cover and chill. Bring to room temperature and rewhisk before using.

For hash:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Cut greens and stems off all beets; discard stems. Coarsely chop enough beet greens to measure 4 loosely packed cups. Bring medium saucepan of salted water to boil. Add greens and cook just until wilted, about 1 minute. Drain well. Set aside. Scrub beets; place in 8x8x2-inch glass baking dish. Pour half of herb oil over beets; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover baking dish with foil and roast beets until tender when pierced with small sharp knife, about 1 hour. Remove from oven and let beets stand until cool enough to handle. Peel beets; cut into 1/2-inch pieces and reserve. DO AHEAD: Beet greens and beets can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately and chill.

Increase oven temperature to 375°F. Combine squash, potatoes, and yams in large bowl. Add remaining herb oil and toss to coat. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Spread vegetable mixture evenly on large rimmed baking sheet. Roast until vegetables are tender when pierced with knife and lightly browned around edges, stirring and turning vegetables occasionally, about 50 minutes. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand uncovered at room temperature. Rewarm in 350°F oven until heated through, about 15 minutes.

Stir beets and beet greens into roasted vegetables; dot with butter cubes and continue to roast just until beets are heated through, 5 to 10 minutes. Transfer vegetable mixture to large bowl and serve.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by , http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/potato-and-autumn-vegetable-hash-355757

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winter csa share – week 1

winter csa share week 1

Welcome to the 1st week of the Pitchfork & Crow 2015/2016 Winter CSA!  Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Cauliflower
  • Celeriac (aka celery root) – one of our favorite roots around.  Mash it with potatoes, put it in a soup or stew, or roast it with other rooty vegetables for some added celery flavor.
  • Carrots
  • Yellow Onions
  • Cabbage
  • Hakurei Salad Turnips – fantastic ad smooth when eaten raw sliced on salads, also interesting when roasted.
  • Mixed Sweet Peppers
  • Winter Salad Mix – a mix of mizuna, tatsoi, arugula, castelfranco chicory, cilantro, peacock kale, and escarole.  Great fresh or quickly sauteed.
  • Gill’s Golden Pippin Acorn Winter Squash – a new favorite of ours, this variety was developed in the mid 20th century by the Gill Brothers Seed Company of Portland, OR.  We think it’s better than any other acorn squash we’ve eaten.  Really.
  • Apples

field

Welcome to the first share of the 2015/2016 Winter CSA!  We’re excited you chose to join us for the next 5+ months of seasonal vegetables.  This past week brought the coldest temperatures of the season to the farm, right on queue for the start of the winter CSA.  Many of you are continuing on from the summer CSA but we do have a lot of new folks, quite a few for their first winter season with us.  Either way we hope you’re ready to see what this winter has in store.

This past weekend we sent out an update email to all Winter CSA members.  Please take a moment to review the information we provided including pick-up location details and tips for getting the most out of the CSA experience.  We also included a list of important dates for the upcoming season including the every other week pick-up dates.  Please be sure to add those dates to your calendar for future reference.  Also, please let us know if you didn’t receive the reminder email and we’ll get you added to the list.

flowers

We know it can seem like there’s less diversity during the winter months compared to the summer season CSA mix.  It’s all greens, roots, and winter squash in every share.  If you’re looking for inspiration we suggest joining the Pitchfork & Crow CSA member group on Facebook.  CSA members have been sharing some fun recipes and suggestions there.  And the photos are inspiration in themselves!  Also, don’t forget that we have a recipe archive from past newsletters here on our website.  Search by vegetable for recipe inspiration and new ideas.

Let’s get this season started!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you in two weeks!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Panang Vegetable Curry

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large shallots, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons Panang Curry Paste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped peeled ginger
  • 2 1/3 cups canned unsweetened coconut milk, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups (or more) vegetable stock
  • 8 fresh or frozen kaffir lime leaves
  • 2 dried chiles de árbol
  • 1 4-pound kabocha squash, cut into 8 wedges, seeded, or 2 acorn squash, quartered, seeded
  • 1 small head of cauliflower (about 1 1/2 pounds), cored, broken into 1″-2″ florets
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled, cut on a diagonal into 1/2″ slices
  • 2 red bell peppers, cut into 1/2″ squares
  • 1/4 cup liquid tamarind concentrate or 2 tablespoons tamarind paste mixed with 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced fresh basil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce (such as nam pla or nuoc nam)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 12-ounce package firm tofu, drained, patted dry, cut into 1″ cubes
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup chopped peanuts
  • Steamed jasmine rice

Ingredient info: Unsweetened coconut milk, chiles de árbol, and fish sauce are sold at better supermarkets. Kaffir lime leaves and tamarind concentrate can be found at Southeast Asian markets.

Heat oil in a large heavy wide pot over medium heat. Add shallots, Panang Curry Paste , and ginger; stir until shallots begin to soften, 2-3 minutes. Add 1/3 cup coconut milk; stir until browned, about 4 minutes.

Add remaining 2 cups coconut milk, 1 1/2 cups vegetable stock, lime leaves, and chiles; stir to blend, scraping up browned bits. Add kabocha squash to pot, set on sides so all pieces fit in a single layer. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until squash is almost tender, 15-20 minutes. Remove squash from pot; stir in cauliflower, carrots, and peppers. Return squash to pot, placing on top of vegetables; cook until all vegetables are tender, 10-15 minutes. Transfer squash to a plate.

Stir tamarind concentrate, half of basil, fish sauce, and lime juice into pot; add tofu. Cover and simmer until heated through, about 2 minutes, adding more stock if too thick. Season to taste with salt.

Divide curry among bowls; top each with 1 wedge of squash; sprinkle remaining basil and peanuts over. Serve curry with steamed jasmine rice.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/panang-vegetable-curry-367766

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Spiced Pork with Celery Root Puree and Lentils

Celery Root Puree

  • 2 pounds celery root (celeriac), peeled, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 5 cups whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • Ground white pepper

Lentils

  • 3 bacon slices, chopped
  • 1/4 cup 1/8-inch cubes peeled carrots
  • 1/4 cup chopped shallots
  • 1/4 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 1 1/2 cups dried lentils
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon butter

Pork

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 6 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 1/2 pounds pork tenderloins
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 cup low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon cold butter

For celery root puree:

Bring celery root and milk to boil in heavy large saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered until celery root is very tender, about 20 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer celery root to processor. Add 1/2 cup hot milk. Puree until very smooth. Blend in butter and lemon juice. Season with salt and white pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

For lentils:

Sauté bacon in medium saucepan over medium-high heat until crisp, about 3 minutes. Add carrots, shallots, and rosemary; sauté until shallots begin to soften, about 1 minute. Add lentils and 3 cups water; bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered until lentils are tender and liquid has nearly evaporated, about 35 minutes. Stir in butter. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.)

For pork:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Whisk first 4 ingredients in bowl. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Heat oil in large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add pork; sauté until brown on all sides, about 6 minutes total. Brush pork with honey mixture. Transfer skillet to oven; roast pork 10 minutes. Turn pork over and brush with honey mixture. Roast until thermometer inserted into center of pork registers 145°F, about 10 minutes longer. Transfer pork to work surface; tent with foil (temperature will increase 5 degrees).

Add broth and remaining honey mixture to same skillet. Boil over high heat until sauce is reduced to 3/4 cup, about 5 minutes. Strain sauce into small bowl. Return sauce to skillet. Whisk in butter. Season with salt and pepper.

Rewarm celery root puree and lentils. Cut pork crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Place 1/2 cup celery root puree in center of each of 6 plates. Using back of spoon, make indentation in puree. Spoon 1/2 cup lentils into indentation on each plate. Arrange pork slices atop lentils and drizzle with sauce.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by , http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/spiced-pork-with-celery-root-puree-and-lentils-108575

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Cabbage and Apple Salad

  • 1/2 teaspoons caraway seeds
  • 1/2 small head green cabbage, core removed, thinly sliced
  • 1 green apple, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 cup torn kale leaves
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper Toast caraway seeds in a dry small skillet over medium heat, tossing constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Let cool.

Toss cabbage, apple, kale, and caraway seeds with lemon juice and oil in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by

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summer csa share – week 27

csa share week 27

Welcome to the 27th and final week of the Pitchfork & Crow 2015 Summer CSA!  Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Garlic
  • Celery
  • Potatoes
  • Leeks
  • Lacinato Kale
  • Sugarloaf Chicory – we think this would be awfully tasty with creamy dressing in a salad
  • Sweet Potatoes!
  • Sage
  • Butternut or Autumn Crown Winter Squash
  • Winter Luxury Pie Pumpkins
  • Corn Flour or Polenta – We grew Cascade Ruby Gold Flint Corn this year, a locally bred and adapted corn variety that when milled results in both polenta (aka grits) and flour!  It doesn’t get much better than that in my opinion.  Quick video from last year of the process hereAlso, stick it in the freezer if you don’t plan on using it right away.
  • Pears

frosty

It’s hard to believe we’ve arrived at the 27th week so soon, but here we are.  Many thanks for your continued support.  We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, we couldn’t do this without you!  We appreciate you signing on with us for a whole season of vegetables and hope you’ll consider joining us again.

As promised last week, I wanted to give a brief synopsis of the 2015 CSA member survey results.  We appreciate the feedback and we’ll be keeping it mind as we head into the planning season.

I’ll only highlight the major questions and results below to keep it brief.  We’ve received 24 responses to the survey (out of 88 shares), though a single respondent may have included multiple answers to a single question in some cases.  The number in parenthesis equals the number of mentions from separate respondents.

= Why did you join the CSA?

  • To support a local farm (24)
  • To eat more seasonally  (21)
  • To access more diverse vegetables (19)

More than half of the respondents also chose “To eat more vegetables” and “Because P&C is certified organic”.

We asked this question to gauge member expectations.  Knowing  why you’re joining helps us to meet member goals as well as our own farm goals.  We’re especially excited to hear folks are joining the CSA to eat more seasonally and to access more diverse vegetables.  These are important factors to us as CSA farmers and always hope they’re also important to members.

= What would you like to see more of in the CSA?

  • Onions (7)
  • Tomatoes (6)
  • Potatoes (4)

Further suggestions include: Carrots (3), Garlic (3), and Lettuce (3) in addition to a number of other suggestions with fewer mentions.

We appreciate knowing what folks would like to see more of.  We know what we’d like to improve on, but of course we want you to be happy with the selection available.  Some things we just need to get better at growing like onions and tomatoes and garlic for varying reasons.  Other things we get mixed responses about from members.  We never want to truly overwhelm anyone with an item and when we hear folks saying they’ve got something piling up at home or they feel like they’re “drowning” in something, we tend to cut back if it seems reasonable.  We’re still working on finding the balance where we’re offering a diverse share each week but including just the right balance of the familiar and unfamiliar.

= What would you like to see less of in the CSA?

  • Nothing (5)
  • Sunchokes (4)
  • Peppers (3)

As with wanting to know what you’d like to see more of, knowing what you’d like to see less of also helps us with our planning.  The CSA model means that members will share in the bounties and the failures of the season and we should be attempting to grow what members would be happy to see bounties of.  It’s interesting to see these answers change over time.  Two years ago many people mentioned they’d like to see fewer potatoes in the share.  This year several people said they want more potatoes.  Evidently we reduced them too much.  Of course we’re dealing with such small numbers that it’s difficult to know if these answers are truly representative of the CSA at large.

Items like Sunchokes appeal to some members and help us add diversity to shares a few times throughout the season so we’ll continue to grow them.  We think the addition of the swap box at the market-style pick-up locations in Salem and at the farm in Lebanon probably helped folks to discard items they really didn’t want to take home.  Happily, those items most often quickly found a home with a member who wanted more and we didn’t end up with nearly as many extras as in past seasons.

= The share size was:

  • More than enough: 7
  • Good Amount: 18
  • Not Enough: 0

What’s enough?  Of course it’s different for every family.  The results for this question suggest we’re hitting the mark for most folks.  Those who find the share size overwhelming may want to consider splitting a share in the future.  Also, we know that several members have CSA shares with multiple farms.

= What has been especially positive for you about this year’s CSA season?

  • Supporting local farmers/Nice farmers (7)
  • Quality of vegetables (5)
  • Variety of vegetables (3)
  • New Salem pick-up location (3)

It’s nice to see the answers here compared to the reasons given for joining the CSA.  In general the positive aspects of the CSA appear to align with the initial expectations.

= What could have been better for you about this year’s CSA season?

  • “Not a thing” (9)
  • “Wished I could have made it to the farm events (2)

The above answers were the only two with multiple responses.  There were just two other suggestions provided by single respondents that included knowing in advance what will be in the week’s share and wanting more lettuce.

Although many folks suggested that no changes were needed, it’s easy for us to focus on the other answers provided.  Some of these things we can address.  For instance we can work to figure out how to make on-farm events more accessible to folks and we can try to grow more lettuce.  Easy fixes. 

Unfortunately we’re not great at predicting the exact contents of future shares, so letting members know ahead of time is trickier than these other suggestions.  Sometimes we’re counting on something to go into a certain week’s share but when it comes time to harvest it’s not ready yet or it’s been hit by bugs.  Each week we make a list of what we know is available to harvest in a large enough quantity and consider what will make up a diverse share.  We look at the previous week or two and try not too duplicate too much.  We head out to the field and scratch items off the list that won’t make it and add other items that will fill in the gaps.  Jeff calls it alchemy and it sure feels that way.  It might be easier if we knew in advance just what we’d be harvesting.  But I’m not sure it would be as much fun.

= Do you think you got a fair amount of produce for the price you paid for the share?

1 being “Not enough produce for price paid” and 5 being “Produce exceeded price

  • 1 (0)
  • 2 (0)
  • 3 (8)
  • 4 (12)
  • 5 (4 )

Thanks, we’d hope you say that!

= Would you be interested in any of these potential opportunities next season?

  • Participating in CSA member preserving or canning events. (18)
  • Volunteering on the farm. (14)
  • Donating to a CSA scholarship fund. (7)
  • Participating in a CSA discussion or book group focusing on food and agriculture. (5)
  • Other: Participating in a CSA Member Food Swap (suggested by 1 member)

We’ve been kicking around some ideas for how to enhance the “Community” portion of the CSA model.  We thought we’d throw out some ideas to test the waters and it would seem that you guys are game!  One member even gave the extra suggestion of having a CSA member food swap event.  Our time is already stretched thin, what with all the farming, so we may ask for volunteers to help organize some fun additions in the coming seasons.  Let us know if you’re especially interested in helping out.

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Once again, thanks for joining us this season.  We hope you all have a fabulous Thanksgiving full of local delicious food.  We’ll see the Winter CSA members next week.  For everyone else, have a fantastic winter!  We’ll be in touch when we’re ready to begin accepting members for the 2016 Summer CSA season.

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Smoked Salmon Chowder

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 medium leeks, white and light green parts only, rinsed and sliced (about 3 cups)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 large russet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1 large stalk celery, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups milk (any fat content)
  • 8 ounces smoked salmon, flaked
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons chives, chopped

1. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over low heat. Add the leeks and garlic and sautéthem for 2 minutes.

2. Add the potato, celery, salt, and pepper and cook over medium heat for about 1 minute, stirring constantly.

3. Add the broth and simmer until the potato is tender, about 15 minutes.

4. Add the tomato paste and milk, then the salmon, and bring the mixture back to a simmer for a few minutes (but don’t let it boil, or the milk will separate).

5. As it simmers, stir in the cream.

6. Remove from heat, garnish with the chives, and serve.

From Epicurious via Cookie, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/smoked-salmon-chowder-240816

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Sweet Potato, Apple, Sage Spoon Bread

  • 1 1-pound red-skinned sweet potato (yam), peeled, cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 6-ounce Granny Smith apple, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch chunks (or what about trying pears?)
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon (packed) golden brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1 cup white cornmeal
  • 4 large eggs, separated
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

Cook sweet potato in pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 10 minutes. Drain; transfer to large bowl.

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in heavy medium skillet over medium heat. Add apple; sauté until tender and golden, about 8 minutes. Add apple to sweet potato; mash together. Cool. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Bring milk, sugar, sage, and salt to boil in heavy medium saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low; gradually whisk in cornmeal. Cook until cornmeal absorbs milk and pulls clean from bottom of pan, stirring constantly, about 5 minutes. Whisk in 3 tablespoons butter. Whisk yolks in large bowl to blend. Gradually whisk in warm cornmeal mixture. Whisk in baking powder. Mix sweet potato mixture into cornmeal mixture. Beat egg whites in medium bowl to medium-stiff peaks. Fold whites into warm cornmeal mixture.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in heavy large ovenproof skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium-high heat. Pour batter into skillet. Transfer skillet to oven; bake spoon bread until top is golden and puffed, about 1 hour. Serve warm.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/sweet-potato-apple-and-sage-spoon-bread-107317

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Roasted Squash, Chestnut, and Chicory Salad and Cranberry Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for greasing
  • 1 2-pound acorn squash
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup peeled cooked whole chestnuts (from a 7- to 8-oince jar), cut into thirds
  • 4 (1/4-inch-thick) slices pancetta (6 ounce total), cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1/4 cup fresh cranberries, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  • 3/4 pound chicory (curly endive), trimmed and torn into 2-inch pieces (10 cups)

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 450°F. Line a large shallow baking pan with foil and oil generously with olive oil.

Cut off stem end of squash, then put cut side down and halve lengthwise. Discard seeds, then cut squash into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Peel if desired with a paring knife and transfer slices to a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and gently toss to coat. Arrange in 1 layer in lined baking pan and roast until golden, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and turn squash over with a spatula. Add chestnuts to pan in an even layer, then continue to roast until squash is golden and tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Keep warm, covered with foil.

While squash is roasting, cook pancetta in a dry 10-inch heavy skillet over high heat until browned, about 4 minutes total. Transfer pancetta with a slotted spoon to paper towels to drain, reserving fat in skillet.

Reheat pancetta fat over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then add cranberries and brown sugar and stir once to combine. Remove from heat and add water, stirring and scraping up brown bits from bottom of skillet.

Transfer cranberry mixture to a medium bowl and whisk in mustard, remaining tablespoon olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Toss together chicory, roasted acorn squash, and chestnuts. Just before serving, toss with dressing and sprinkle with pancetta.

From Epicurious via Gourmet, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/roasted-squash-chestnut-and-chicory-salad-with-cranberry-vinaigrette-230967

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summer csa share – week 26

csa share week 26

Welcome to the 26th week of the Pitchfork & Crow Summer CSA! Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Fall Salad Mix – we’ve got a mix of mizuna, arugula, and tatsoi this week.  Feel free to quickly saute this mix for a warmer option.
  • Cipollini Onions
  • Cooking Greens Mix – a mix of chard and several types of kale
  • Celeriac
  • Chioggia Beets
  • Parsley – we’ll make the case for parsley any day.  Such a flavorful and versatile herb, we love it in salad dressing, added to sauteed greens, alongside eggs, or in pretty much anything.
  • Red Cabbage
  • Carrots
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Shishito Peppers – The last of the roulette pepper for this season!
  • Black Futzu Winter Squash – A slightly nutty squash from Japan that’s related to Butternut but has it’s own unique flavor.  I used a Black Futzu to make Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese this week thanks to a CSA member passing along the recipe and it was delicious!

CSA members: Are you looking for for more vegetables for your Thanksgiving meal or hoping to stock up on some staple items before the end of the CSA?  We’re offering a holiday harvest for pick-up next week. Check your weekly email for the details.

Here’s our sketch of what should  be in next week’s share to help you with your order:

Leeks, Garlic, Pie Pumpkin, Butternut Squash, Sweet Potatoes, Celery, Apples, Corn Flour, Chicory, Sage, Potatoes.

early shares

As we wrap up the end of the 2015 summer CSA season with just one week left it’s a good time to reflect on the whole season.  We’ve put together an end-of-season survey for members and we’d love to hear your thoughts on this year.  How did the CSA work on your end?  Was it a good experience, or a little too challenging?  What suggestions can you share to help us improve the CSA in future seasons?  Click here for the survey.

Also, we’ve added an incentive this year as we’d like to hear from as many of you as are willing to share.  Complete the survey and you can choose to be entered to win your choice of a P&C pork roast or a farmer-preserved gift basket!

later shares

In an effort to evaluate the season based on the vegetables we made up a spreadsheet detailing share contents by week.  Here are some details we found:

  • Average share size was 12 items (up 1 items from last year)
  • Average share value based on rough market prices was $34/week (up $2 from last year).
  • If purchased at market, the season’s share value would have cost roughly $930 (compared to $860 last year).
  • Top 10 share items: Peppers (19), Salad Mix (18), Tomatoes (15), Onions (15), Summer Squash (13), Carrots (12), Cucumbers (12), Winter Squash (11), Strawberries (11), and Broccoli (9)
  • Confounding vegetables we try to give you a taste of: Beets (7), Cabbage (7), Fennel (3), Kohlrabi (2), Bok Choy (2), Sunchokes (1)
  • Items not grown by P&C: Just the u-picked Blueberries!

We know there’s a lot more to the CSA than just the vegetables.  We hope you’ll take a few minutes to complete the member survey to help us understand a little better how things have gone on your side of things.  We’ll share the available results next week so you can compare your experience to what other members have to say.

Reminder: Just one more week of the Summer CSA!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you next week!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Parsleyed Celery Root Fritters and Lemon Aioli

For Aioli

  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

For batter

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup beer (not dark)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons celery salt
  • a 1-pound celery root (sometimes called celeriac)
  • about 4 cups vegetable oil for frying
  • about 12 fresh small flat-leafed parsley sprigs

Make aïoli:

Mince garlic and in a bowl stir together aïoli ingredients and salt and pepper to taste. (Aïoli may be made 2 days ahead and chilled, covered.)

Make batter:

In a bowl whisk together batter ingredients and pepper to taste. With a sharp knife peel celery root and cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices.

 

In a deep large heavy skillet (about 12 inches wide by 3 inches deep) heat 1 inch oil over moderately high heat until a deep-fat thermometer registers 375° F. Working in batches of 3, coat celery root slices in batter, letting excess drip off, and immediately press a parsley sprig into batter on one side of each slice. Carefully drop coated slices, parsley sides up, into oil and fry, turning them once, until golden brown, about 1 minute on each side. Transfer fritters as fried with tongs to brown paper or paper towels to drain. Return oil to 375° F before next batch.

 

Serve fritters immediately with aïoli.

From Epicurious via Gourmet, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/parsleyed-celery-root-fritters-and-lemon-aioli-14492

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Braised Beets and Red Cabbage

  • 3/4 pound red cabbage (1/2 small head), cut into wedges, cored
  • 4 medium beets (about 2 inches in diameter), peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup (or more) water
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Working in batches, coarsely grate cabbage and beets in food processor fitted with grating blade. Set aside.

Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until brown, about 15 minutes. Mix in cabbage and beets. Add 1/2 cup water and vinegar. Cover; simmer until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally and adding water by tablespoonfuls if mixture is dry, about 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl; top with parsley.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétithttp://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/braised-beets-and-red-cabbage-3191

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Root Vegetable Hash with Poached Eggs and Parsley Pesto

Pesto

  • 2 cups (packed) fresh Italian parsley leaves (from 2 bunches)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 small garlic clove, peeled

Hash

  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 2 1/2 cups 1/2-inch dice peeled Yukon Gold potatoes (about 1 pound)
  • 2 1/2 cups 1/2-inch dice peeled parsnips (try celeriac instead)
  • 2 cups 1/2-inch dice peeled rutabagas
  • 1 1/2 cups 1/2-inch dice peeled carrots
  • 1/2 cup 1/2-inch dice red bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 4 large eggs

For pesto:

Blend all ingredients in processor until almost smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

For hash:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray large rimmed baking sheet with nonstick spray. Toss potatoes and next 5 ingredients on prepared sheet; spread in single layer. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Roast vegetables until tender, stirring and turning occasionally, about 45 minutes. Stir in garlic; roast 5 minutes longer. Mix in green onions. Fill large skillet halfway with generously salted water; bring to boil. Reduce heat to maintain steady simmer. Crack eggs, 1 at a time, into custard cup, then slide eggs into simmering water. Poach eggs until softly set, about 3 minutes.

 

Divide hash among 4 plates. Using slotted spoon, top each serving with 1 poached egg. Drizzle with pesto.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by C, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/root-vegetable-hash-with-poached-eggs-and-parsley-pesto-108564

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summer csa share – week 25

csa share week 25

Welcome to the 25th week of the Pitchfork & Crow Summer CSA! Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Fall Salad Mix – we’ve got a mix of mizuna, arugula, tatsoi, and spinach this week.  Feel free to quickly saute this mix for a warmer option.
  • Red Onions
  • Red Ursa Kale
  • Rutabaga – We love rutabaga and hope you do too!  Treat it like a potato and mash it, fry it, boil it, or roast it!  Jeff may be known for his rutabaga juice in some circles too.
  • Celery – We keep trying to grow quality cutting celery, but its mysteries elude us.  This celery is best in slow-cooking soups and stews we think.  Flavorful?  Yes!  But perhaps too stringy to enjoy raw.
  • Fennel
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Garlic
  • Sweet Peppers
  • Popcorn – You can knock the kernels off the cob and into a paper bag and pop this in the microwave.  We’ve had fun watching them pop on the cob too!  Most often we’ll use these directions and pop it on the stovetop. 
  • Delicata Winter Squash
  • Apples

kale

The rainy weather this week made for a perfect time to catch up on some accounting and look a little closer at some of our enterprises.  I’ve been meaning to pencil out the costs associated with our small chicken flock for sometime.  We’ve been taking between 6 and 9 dozen eggs to the Salem CSA pick-up for members to purchase for $4/dozen since August and I’ve had a suspicious feeling that we haven’t been covering our costs at that price.

Last spring we invested in a small laying flock of 30 chickens to replace an even smaller flock of older hens we’d dispatched last fall.  The chickens in the new flock were around two months old when we brought them home from the feed store.  On average layer hens begin laying eggs when they’re six months old, so we had four months to feed and house them before we expected to see any eggs.  We’ve just hit the nine month mark and as planned we’ve been in the egg selling business for about three months.  Having just invested in the next half-pallet of feed, it seemed like a good time to crunch the numbers.

After adding up feed costs and the initial cost of the birds, the numbers thus far suggest we should be charging $7.10 per dozen eggs.  There are a few things affecting that price though.  First, we’re not factoring in the coop at this point because we’d already built it several years ago.  Also, that price doesn’t reflect any labor costs associated with opening and closing the coop, collecting and washing eggs, feeding and watering the birds, driving to the feed mill to purchase feed, moving the coop and fencing to new pastures etc.

There’s a flaw in only calculating costs up to this point though.  Our investment in the laying flock was for the long-term.  By calculating costs now, we’re expecting the first 3 months of laying productivity to pay for the initial 6 months when the birds weren’t laying but were eating.  We can use the production numbers thus far to estimate expected costs and egg production for the next  year.  If we spread that initial non-production time over a longer period, the cost of each dozen comes down.  If we were to get out of the egg business today, we should have charged that $7.10 per dozen to cover our hard costs associated with this flock.  However, if we expect to have production through next year, the numbers suggest we should be charging $5.27 per dozen pre-labor and $6.85 after factoring in our time.   Note that this number would be even higher if we were trying to market the eggs in any other capacity, if we were paying fixed labor wages to an employee, or if we were investing in new egg cartons like other farms, especially those selling higher quantities of eggs, need to do.

grain drill

There are some added benefits to having chickens on the farm that are difficult to calculate.  They’re adding some fertility as they range around the pasture.  They’re also likely eating some weed seeds.  Plus, we like having them around.  Like the flowers we planted to fill out rows of vegetables, the chickens make us smile.

Although the hard costs associated with animals generally seem easier to quantify than costs for vegetable production (exactly how much did it cost to grow that rutabaga?), it’s not always as straight forward as it might seem.  We’d been thinking about expanding our layer flock, but for the time being we’re going to hold off.  Expansion would mean a new coop, which would bring the costs up that much more.  We’ll continue to bring the eggs we have to the Salem pick-up, but we’ll be increasing the price to $6 per dozen.  And we’ll also work to figure out how to bring the costs down on our end.

Reminder: Just two more weeks of the Summer CSA!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you next week!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Sheet-Pan Cumin Chicken Thighs with Squash, Fennel, and Grapes

  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 acorn or delicata squash (about 1 1/2 pounds), halved lengthwise, seeded, cut into 1/4″ half moons
  • 1 fennel bulb (about 1/2 pound), cut in half lengthwise, sliced into 1/4″ wedges with core intact
  • 1/2 pound seedless red grapes (about 1 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 2 pounds)
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh mint leaves

Special equipment: An 18×13″ rimmed baking sheet

Position rack in upper third of oven and preheat to 425°F. Mix brown sugar, cumin, salt, pepper, and cayenne in a small bowl. Toss squash, fennel, and grapes with oil and half of spice mixture on rimmed baking sheet and arrange in a single layer.

Rub chicken thighs with remaining spice mixture and arrange, skin side up, on top of fruit and vegetables. Roast until skin is browned and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of chicken registers 165°F, about 35 minutes; if chicken skin or vegetables start to burn, move pan to a lower rack to finish cooking.

Divide chicken, fruit, and vegetables among 4 plates and top with mint.

From Epicurious by , http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/sheet-pan-cumin-chicken-thighs-with-squash-fennel-and-grapes-56390000

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Squash and Root vegetable Slaw

  • 1 1/2 cups each shredded raw kabocha or butternut squash, rutabaga, and sweet potato
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded raw celery root
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • 2 peeled, quartered, cored apples cut into matchstick-size pieces
  • 1 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup 1″ pieces chives
  • 3/4 cup Granny Smith Apple Cider Vinaigrette

Combine 1 1/2 cups each shredded raw kabocha or butternut squash, rutabaga, and sweet potato in a large resealable plastic bag. Place 1 1/2 cups shredded raw celery root in a large bowl of water with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to prevent browning; cover. Chill shredded vegetables overnight. Drain celery root. Transfer shredded vegetables to a large bowl. Add 2 peeled, quartered, cored apples cut into matchstick-size pieces (we love crisp, balanced Fuji). Add 1 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves and 1/2 cup 1″ pieces chives. Add 3/4 cup Granny Smith Apple Cider Vinaigrette; toss to coat. Add more vinaigrette, if desired. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit  by , http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/squash-and-root-vegetable-slaw-51124270

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Ribollita

  • 13 cups (or more) water, divided
  • 1 1/4 cups dried cannellini (white kidney beans; about 8 ounces)
  • 12 large fresh sage leaves
  • 8 garlic cloves; 5 sliced, 3 chopped
  • 2 teaspoons (or more) fine sea salt, divided
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus additional for drizzling
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 large celery stalks, diced
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 1 large unpeeled Yukon Gold potato, scrubbed, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 small fennel bulb, trimmed, quartered through core, sliced crosswise
  • 1 large pinch of dried thyme
  • 1 small bunch black kale, cut crosswise into 1-inch ribbons (about 6 cups)
  • 1 small bunch green chard (about 4 large leaves), center stem removed, cut crosswise into 1-inch-wide ribbons (about 6 cups)
  • 4 cups thinly sliced savoy cabbage
  • 5 large plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 2-inch square Parmesan cheese rind
  • Pinch of dried crushed red pepper
  • 2 cups (or more) Light Vegetable Broth or good-quality canned vegetable broth (such as Swanson)
  • 6 1/2-inch-thick slices country white bread, coarsely torn with crusts

Combine 8 cups water, beans, sage, and sliced garlic in large saucepan. Bring to boil; reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until beans are tender, stirring occasionally and adding more water by 1/4 cupfuls to keep beans submerged, 2 to 2 1/2 hours, depending on age of beans. Add 1 teaspoon sea salt; simmer 10 minutes. Uncover and cool beans in liquid. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill in cooking liquid.

Heat 3 tablespoons oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onion; sprinkle with sea salt. Cook until onion is translucent, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add chopped garlic; stir 2 minutes. Add celery, carrot, potato, fennel, and thyme; cook until vegetables are tender and begin to turn brown in spots, stirring often, 15 to 18 minutes. Add kale, chard, cabbage, tomatoes, Parmesan rind, 5 cups water, and 1 teaspoon sea salt. Bring to boil; reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until vegetables are very tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Add beans with cooking liquid and crushed red pepper. Add 2 cups broth. Season with salt and generous amount of pepper. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool, cover, and chill. Rewarm before continuing.

Add bread to soup and simmer, stirring often to break up bread into smaller pieces and adding more broth by 1/2 cupfuls to thin, if desired. Season with sea salt and pepper.

Divide ribollita among bowls, drizzle with oil, and serve.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit , http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/ribollita-357309

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summer csa share – week 24

csa share week 24

Welcome to the 24th week of the Pitchfork & Crow Summer CSA! Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Fall Salad Mix – we’ve got a mix of mizuna, arugula, and tatsoi this week.  Feel free to quickly saute this mix for a warmer option.
  • Sweet Onions
  • Sprouting Broccoli
  • Sunchokes (aka Jerusalem Artichokes)These are roots of a sunflower variety.  We enjoy them shredded and sauteed but they’re good raw, roasted, and in soups too.  Please note that they contain high levels of the carbohydrate inulin, which is difficult for some folks to digest.
  • Mustards
  • Carrots
  • Cilantro
  • Poblano Peppers
  • Jalapeno Peppers
  • Tomatillos
  • Spaghetti Squash
  • Pears

storage crops

I heard a podcast episode this week that seemed appropriate to mention here.  It was a collaboration effort between two great podcasts: 99% Invisible, a design inspired podcast, and Gravy, a podcast of the Southern Foodways Alliance that usually focuses on food stories from the South.  This particular episode fell somewhere in between those two topics.  It explored the history of processed foods and the role the military had in bringing them to grocery store shelves as related in the book Combat-Ready Kitchen by Anastacia Marx de Salcedo.

When you think about it the connection seems obvious.  The military needs lightweight, long lasting, shelf stable, and preferably tasty food to send with troops in the field.  It seems logical that they’d share that food technology with the private sector in the hopes that if they needed to ramp up production for a large scale war, as happened in World War II, then the food industry would be ready with production systems already in place.  Finally, it seems easy enough to get the general public to consume these packaged foods given their convenience, availability, and tastiness.

That all said, the line that hit home went something like: They’re working to make the packaged foods more resemble fresh foods.  Not a direct quote, but you get the idea.  And it made me think, why not just eat the fresh foods instead?  We don’t need food that will last for 3 years on a shelf in our homes.  Which brings us around to the CSA and your decisions to eat the fresh foods available seasonally and to support our local farm instead of supporting the giant food companies serving up food technology instead of just food.  Good choices you!  There’s a lot more to the story in the podcast and I suggest you give it a listen, especially if you’d like to hear more about the possibilities surrounding shelf stable pizza.

skillz

This week was a blur of activity on the farm.  Jeff and Tim finished up the apple harvest in the back orchard and began the epic sweet potato harvest. I endeavored to get on the plum drying (prune producing?) train.  We undertook a major organizing effort in the barn and managed to squeeze all 16 pallet bins of winter squash into what seemed like a full space with just 6 bins previously.  And Jeff managed to fix the heater switch in his truck and reassemble the dashboard without incident!  Perhaps the biggest accomplishment of the week.  There was also year-end budgeting and accounting and firewood stacking and more.  The week ahead will be much the same.  That’s fall on the farm.

Reminder: Three more weeks of the Summer CSA!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you next week!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Crispy Jerusalem Artichokes with Aged Balsamic

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds small Jerusalem artichokes (sunchokes), scrubbed, quartered
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • 4 sprigs rosemary
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar

Heat oil in a large skillet, preferably cast iron (you’ll need a lid), over mediumhigh heat. Add Jerusalem artichokes and 1/4 cup water and season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until Jerusalem artichokes are fork-tender, 8–10 minutes.

Uncover skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until water is evaporated and Jerusalem artichokes begin to brown and crisp, 8–10 minutes longer; transfer to a platter.

Add rosemary and butter to skillet and cook, stirring often, until butter foams, then browns, about 4 minutes.

Remove skillet from heat and stir in vinegar, scraping up any browned bits. Spoon brown butter sauce and rosemary over Jerusalem artichokes.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/crispy-jerusalem-artichokes-with-aged-balsamic-51255110

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Spaghetti Squash with Sausage Filling

  • 1 3 3/4- to 4-pound spaghetti squash, halved lengthwise, seeded
  • 1 pound bulk pork sausage
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups purchased marinara sauce
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Wrap squash halves in plastic wrap. Cook 1 at a time in microwave on high until tender, about 8 minutes. Pierce plastic to allow steam to escape. Cool. Meanwhile, sauté sausage, bell pepper, onion and garlic in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat until sausage browns and vegetables are tender, breaking up sausage with back of spoon, about 12 minutes. Mix in marinara sauce.

Using fork, pull out squash strands from shells, leaving shells intact. Mix squash strands into sausage mixture. Season filling to taste with salt and pepper. Spoon filling into squash shells. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover; refrigerate.)

Preheat oven to 400°F. Arrange filled squash halves on baking sheet. Sprinkle each with 1/4 cup Parmesan. Bake uncovered until heated through, about 20 minutes (30 minutes if previously chilled). Cut each squash half in two and serve.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/spaghetti-squash-with-sausage-filling-5673

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Spicy Stir Fried Chicken and Greens with Peanuts

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce, divided
  • 2 tablespoons dry Sherry, divided
  • 3 teaspoons Asian sesame oil, divided
  • 2 teaspoons golden brown sugar, divided
  • 1 1/4 pounds skinless boneless chicken breast halves, cut crosswise into 1/3-inch-wide strips
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
  • 4 green onions, white parts and green parts chopped separately
  • 2 teaspoons chopped seeded serrano chiles
  • 1 large bunch greens (such as spinach, mustard greens, kale, or broccoli rabe; about 1 pound), thick stems removed, spinach left whole, other greens cut into 1-inch strips (about 10 cups packed)
  • 1/4 cup chopped roasted salted peanuts

Whisk 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon Sherry, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, and 1 teaspoon sugar in medium bowl. Add chicken; marinade 20 to 30 minutes.

Whisk remaining 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon Sherry, 2 teaspoons sesame oil, and 1 teaspoon sugar in small bowl and reserve.

Heat 2 tablespoons peanut oil in large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add white parts of onions and chiles; stir 30 seconds. Add chicken; stir-fry just until cooked through, about 3 minutes. Transfer chicken mixture to bowl. Add 1 tablespoon peanut oil to same skillet; heat over high heat. Add greens by large handfuls; stir just until beginning to wilt before adding more. Sauté just until tender, 1 to 6 minutes, depending on type of greens. Return chicken to skillet. Add reserved soy sauce mixture; stir until heated through, about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to serving bowl; sprinkle with green parts of onions and peanuts.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by Molly Stevens, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/spicy-stir-fried-chicken-and-greens-with-peanuts-241891

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