winter csa share – week 6

winter csa week 6

Welcome to the 6th week of the Pitchfork & Crow Winter CSA! Here’s what’s in the share:

  • Arugula
  • Chesnok Red Garlic – A great variety for cooking and baking with a creamy texture.
  • Beets
  • Turnips or Radishes – Milan Turnips or Golden Radishes, what a choice!  We think either would be fun roasted up with beets.
  • Cauliflower
  • Cabbage Rapini – When mature plants overwinter they often want to bolt, or go to seed, come spring.  These shoots are delicious and I secretly love them more than asparagus.  Seriously.  Treat them like broccoli, but eat them in everything.
  • Potatoes
  • Castelfranco Chicory – Our winter salads are all about the Castelfranco!  With a little creamy dressing we can eat this for days.  Add a little shredded beet and it’s winter sweetness perfection.
  • Spinach – the majority of this spinach mix is a variety called Beaujolais from our friends at Uprising Seeds.  The red veins make for a striking salad or saute and we can’t help but love it.
  • Cabbage – This semi-savoyed variety is called Deadon.  The outer leaves are a striking purple, but the inner leaves are all green.  We’ve been eating sweet cabbage slaw on sandwiches and in burritos and can’t get enough!
  • Leeks
  • Purple Sprouting Broccoli – our earliest sprouting broccoli!  Eat the florets, eat the leaves, eat the stems, eat it up yum!
  • Spaghetti Winter Squash
  • Dried Apples

Pick-up Reminder: We’ll be out of town at a farmer retreat this week so we’re moving the CSA pick-up to today Sunday, February 8th.  We’ll be set up at our usual spot at the Willamette Heritage Center during the usual 4:30pm-6pm time frame.  Please let us know if you can’t make it to today’s pick-up and we’ll make arrangements to deliver it to you. seeding This past week we sowed the first seeds of 2015.  It’s hard to believe, but there it is.  Just a handful of flats of bok choy, lettuce, and parsley to get started in the propagation house followed by rows of arugula, spinach, radishes, salad turnips, peas and carrots out in field houses.  So much possibility in those seeds.  So much hope.

On a fun note, we sowed our own arugula and bok choy seed saved this past season.  When we planted too much last spring and both crops matured before the start of the summer CSA we decided to turn them into seed crops and let them flower.  Luckily both were open-pollinated varieties so saving our own seed wasn’t an issue.  Also nothing else was blooming at the time here on the farm that might cross with either crop.  A small victory in seed saving!


Seeding isn’t the only thing making this season feel like it’s already really moving along.  The arrival of this very early overwintering cauliflower we’re growing as a trial crop is impressive.  It’s a month or two ahead of our regular varieties!  Last year at this time we were snowed in, busying ourselves with clearing greenhouses of snow, our only solace being that the worst of the damage to plants in the field had already happened back in December.  This year we’re harvesting spinach!  Oh the difference a year makes!

As you know we’re having the CSA pick-up early because we’re headed off to a farmer retreat in the mountains for a few days.  This has become a yearly expedition for us and we always return inspired for the season ahead.  As we head out this year, we’re already excited about this coming season, ready to hit the ground running.  We’re committed to growing food.  We thank you for buying and eating the food we grow!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you in two weeks (at the regularly scheduled Tuesday time)!

Your farmers,
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler


Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Pressed Coppa Sandwiches with Broccoli Rabe Pesto

Broccoli rabe pesto:

  • 1 pound broccoli rabe (rapini; about 1 large bunch)
  • Kosher salt
  • 6 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Pecorino
  • 2 teaspoons honey


  • 8 slices country-style bread
  • 8 ounces thinly sliced provolone cheese
  • 4 ounces thinly sliced sweet coppa or prosciutto
  • Olive oil (for skillet)

For broccoli rabe pesto:
Cook broccoli rabe in a large pot of boiling salted water until bright green, about 30 seconds; drain (reserve pot). Transfer to a bowl of ice water to cool. Drain. Squeeze out water; cut into 1″ pieces.

Combine broccoli rabe, garlic, oil, and red pepper flakes in reserved pot. Cook over low heat, stirring often, until broccoli rabe is very soft, 40-50 minutes. Let pesto cool slightly. Mix in Pecorino and honey.

For assembly:
Build sandwiches with bread, provolone, coppa, and broccoli rabe pesto. Brush a large skillet with oil; heat over mediumlow heat. Working in batches and brushing skillet with oil as needed, add sandwiches to pan, cover with foil, and place a heavy skillet on top. Cook until bread is toasted and cheese melts, 4-5 minutes per side (you can also use a lightly oiled panini press).

DO AHEAD: Pesto can be made 3 days ahead. Cover; chill.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by Chris Kuziemko,


Beet and Cabbage Borscht

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
  • 2 cups chopped cabbage (about 1/2 pound)
  • a 6-ounce boiling potato, peeled and grated coarse
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • a 16-ounce jar whole beets, drained, reserving the liquid, and shredded
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar, or to taste
  • sour cream or plain yogurt for garnish if desired
  • minced fresh dill for garnish if desired

In a large saucepan cook the onion in the oil over moderately low heat, stirring, until it is softened, add the garlic, the cumin seed, the cabbage, and the potato, and cook the mixture, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the broth, 1/2 cup water, the beets with the reserved liquid, the vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste, bring the liquid to a boil, and simmer the soup, covered partially, for 25 minutes. Divide the soup between 2 bowls and garnish it with the sour cream and the dill.

From Epicurious via Gourmet,


Radicchio, Grapefruit, and Spinach Salad

  • 5 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 white grapefruits
  • 1 10-ounce head radicchio, torn into bite-size pieces (use the chicory mix instead)
  • 8 ounces spinach leaves, , torn into bite-size pieces
  • 1/2 cup Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives, pitted

Combine vinegar and fennel seeds in medium bowl. Gradually whisk in oil. Season dressing with salt and pepper.

Cut all peel and white pith from grapefruits. Cut grapefruits between membranes to release segments. Stir segments into dressing. Let stand at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour.

Toss radicchio, spinach and olives in bowl. Add grapefruit segments and dressing to coat. Season with salt and pepper.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit



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