Welcome to the 5th week of the Pitchfork & Crow Summer CSA! Here’s what’s in the share:
- Dazzling Blue Lacinato Kale – Our friend Hank Keogh bred this variety at Wild Garden Seed in Philomath. Plant breeding is awesome! Thanks Hank!
- Milan Turnips
- Green Cabbage
- Bolty Spring Onions – Last week’s onion flowers came from these bulbs. Be warned, they’ve got a pithy stalk in the center, but there’s a lot of oniony awesomeness to be had. There are plenty of non-bolty onions to come, we promise. We just couldn’t bare to waste so many bulbs.
- Romaine Lettuce – Two heads, two varieties, one red and one green.
- Broccoli – We’re working through the last of the our first broccoli succession. Everyone gets a head and bonus side shoots this week!
- Fresh Uncured Rosewood Garlic – It’s garlic harvesting season and we’re excited to get garlic back into the rotation! This week we’re giving you uncured garlic straight from the field. It can be used like cured garlic, but you’ll want to store it in the fridge and use it up quickly.
- Summer Squash – Up first we’ve got traditional zucchinis, yellow straightneck, and an Italian round zucchini known as Tondo di Piacenza.
- Peas or Fava Beans – Last of these for a while.
- Seascape Strawberries – It’s rough picking out there and these may be the last of the berries for a while. Enjoy them!
In the past couple of weeks I’ve mentioned how many things need to happen in the late-May to early-June timeframe. The planting and weeding and irrigating all pile up into a frenzy of farming. Part of the reason for the work pile-up is the one shot wonders of the farming season. Those elusive crops we get a single go at each year. These plantings are big and timing can make or break them. In our planting plans these generally include garlic, winter squash, Brussels sprouts, leeks, peppers, eggplant, celery, celeriac, and potatoes.
We sow succession after succession of lettuce and carrots and cabbage and we try out different varieties for each slot through the growing season. There’s room for variability and trial. If one round doesn’t germinate well, there’s another on the way.
In contrast we only get one shot each year at these other crops. If harvested too late the quality of the garlic will deteriorate and it’s storage life will be lessened. If planted too late the winter squash won’t have time to fully ripen in the field before fall frosts hit. There’s no second chance, only next year.
The early and everlasting hot summer that hit the PNW last year resulted in heavy fungus rust pressure that ravaged our garlic crop If we’ve learned anything from farming it’s that no season is the same as another. The rust pressure in our garlic this year was less and this week’s garlic harvest was much more rewarding as the bulbs had a chance to size up well. We’re looking at some really amazing garlic that will be included in future shares this summer and next winter. Come October we’ll put more cloves in the ground and hope for the best.
Just as we were needing to harvest the season’s garlic, we also needed to finally get the season’s winter squash plants in the ground. We’re several weeks behind on this big planting compared to last year and the window is closing on the number of days left in the growing season to count on having fully ripe squash come fall. We dodged Saturday’s thunderstorms to push this big planting to completion and are glad to have those 975 plants in the field. Like the garlic, we’ll tend the plants through the season and see what we end up with at the other end of things. Fingers crossed we’ll have a bounty of 15 different varieties of winter squash to share with you through the fall and winter months!
Last week we also planted our leeks (hurrah!) and made it through this year’s organic inspection. We’re marking things off the list left and right! This week we’re turning our attention to some serious cultivation and weeding needs. It can’t be all planting and harvesting all the time. Watch out thistle and pigweed, your days are numbered.
Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you next week!
Jeff Bramlett and Carri Heisler
Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:
Creamy Summer Slaw
- 2/3 cup buttermilk
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
- 1 small bunch broccoli (about 12 ounces)
- 1/2 medium Napa cabbage, thinly sliced (about 6 cups) (or use your green cabbage)
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- 8 ounces sugar snap peas, thinly sliced
- 4 tablespoons chopped fresh chives, divided
Combine buttermilk, mayonnaise, and lemon juice in a small bowl; season with salt and pepper and whisk to combine. Set buttermilk dressing aside.
Using a vegetable peeler, peel broccoli stalk if skin is thick. Halve broccoli lengthwise, then thinly slice crosswise, starting at crown. Toss broccoli, cabbage, scallions, sugar snap peas, 2 tablespoons chives, and reserved buttermilk dressing in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper. Serve slaw topped with remaining 2 tablespoons chives.
DO AHEAD: Slaw can be made 6 hours ahead. Cover and chill.
From Epicurious via Bon Appétit http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/creamy-summer-slaw-51178860,
Grilled Wild Salmon with Garlic Scape Pesto and Summer Squash
- Coconut oil, for the grill
- 2 cups garlic scapes (or use fresh garlic)
- 2 cups packed kale leaves
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan or pecorino Romano cheese
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 4 wild salmon fillets, skin intact (1 pound)
- 1 pound yellow squash, sliced into 1/4-inch strips
Oil a grill with coconut oil and preheat the grill over high heat.
Put the garlic scapes, kale, olive oil, cheese, salt, and pepper in a food processor or blender and process until finely chopped. Divide the pesto in half and reserve one- half for another use.
Place the salmon on the grill, flesh side down, and grill 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the salmon, and place the squash slices on the grill. Brush the pesto over the salmon and the squash.
Grill the squash, turning it occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes until cooked through. Grill the salmon 4 to 5 minutes until the skin crisps but the center is still medium. Transfer to a plate and serve immediately.
From Epicurious via Eat Complete by Drew Ramsey, MD, http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/grilled-wild-salmon-with-garlic-scape-pesto-and-summer-squash
Parmesan Chicken with Caesar Roasted Romaine
- 4 7-ounce skinless, boneless chicken breasts
- Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, Pecorino, or Asiago cheese (about 1 1/2 ounces)
- 1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
- 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped, divided
- 2 large hearts of romaine, halved lengthwise
- 4 anchovy fillets packed in oil, drained, chopped
- 1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges
Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil. Season chicken with salt and pepper; place on prepared sheet. Combine cheese, panko, 2 tablespoons oil, parsley, and 1 garlic clove in a medium bowl; season with salt and pepper. Pat panko mixture onto breasts. Roast chicken until crumbs begin to turn golden, about 10 minutes.
Drizzle romaine with 1 tablespoon oil and sprinkle with remaining 1 chopped garlic clove. Season with salt and pepper. Remove baking sheet from oven; place romaine right around chicken. Roast until chicken is cooked through and lettuce is browned at edges, about 5 minutes. Divide among plates. Top lettuce with anchovies; garnish with lemon wedges for squeezing over.
From Epicurious via Bon Appétit