winter csa share – #11

Welcome to the 11th and last share of the Pitchfork & Crow Winter CSA!  Here’s what’s in the share this week:

  • Mixed Spinach
  • Rose Finn Apple Fingerling Potatoes – A versatile variety, good for roasting, grilling, boiling etc.  Also good for thickening soups and gravy.
  • Overwintered Cauliflower or extra Purple Sprouting Broccoli – The cold winter weather was rough on the overwintered cauliflower patch and unfortunately there isn’t enough for everyone.  The good news is that the purple sprouting broccoli held on for a final week and most of you will get a bonus broccoli bunch instead.
  • Cooking Carrots – These are the last of the overwintered carrots, best used for cooking rather than raw snacking at this point.
  • Mixed Radishes & Salad Turnips
  • Red Ursa Kale & Chard Mix
  • Leeks
  • Purple Sprouting Broccoli
  • Arugula Rapini
  • Garlic
  • Collard Rapini – It’s officially rapini season!  The overwintered brassicas, like kale and cabbage, are starting to bolt and will eventually flower but right now they are the sweetest broccoli-like stems and leaves around.  Prepare them like broccoli and enjoy the fleeting taste of the end of winter.
  • Cabbage or Kale Rapini – more rapini!
  • Dried Apples – we grew them, we picked them, we dried them.

Winter CSA Members:  This is the final pick-up of the season!  Many thanks to everyone who joined us for the past 5 months of seasonal vegetables!  We appreciate your support and hope you enjoyed the winter bounty.   We’ll see Summer members after a three week harvest break at the end of May for the start of the Summer CSA!

Things are getting real here on the farm.  After the continuous months of rain we finally pushed some plants into the least saturated field last weekend.  It was not our best spring planting event, but sometimes you do what you gotta do.  It took some slow slogs through the field and some night tilling, but we managed to transplant the first rounds of beets, kohlrabi, bok choy, chard, kale, collards, cabbage, cauliflower, and broccoli.  There will be vegetables this summer!

This is the beginning of the “do all the things right now” season.  We’re working on our task planning efforts, trying to get organized enough to mark projects off the list efficiently.  After a winter of hunkering down and doing only the essentials (like Jeff growing his leg back together) we’re ready to get back to the routine of work.  This past week did see some seed sowing, some weeding, some organic amendment spreading in the fields (including putting the “new” manure spreader to use spreading compost!) but of course it’s just the beginning.

We’re on the cusp of a real sunny weather window, just in time too!  The extended forecast looks promising (after we get through this week’s atmospheric river) and we’re looking forward to getting our onions and strawberries and potatoes in the ground finally.  And tomatoes are headed into a greenhouse next week!  As the Winter CSA draws to a close it’s time to focus on the season ahead.  It’s time to get to work!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see summer members in a month for the first Summer CSA share!

Your farmers,
Carri Heisler and Jeff Bramlett


Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Parmesan Bread Pudding with Broccoli Rabe and Pancetta

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 medium bunch broccoli rabe (rapini), trimmed, cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 pound country-style white bread, cut into 1″ pieces (about 8 cups)
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan
  • 6 thin slices pancetta (Italian bacon)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes. Stir until garlic is softened, about 30 seconds. Add broccoli rabe; season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing, until wilted, about 2 minutes; let cool slightly.

Meanwhile, whisk eggs, milk, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a large bowl to blend. Add broccoli rabe mixture, bread, and 1/2 cup Parmesan; toss to combine. Transfer to a 1 1/2-quart baking dish. Top with pancetta and remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan.

Bake pudding until puffed, browned in spots, and set in the center, 45-55 minutes.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by Mary Frances Heck,


Curried Potato and Leek Soup with Spinach

  • 2 medium leeks (white and pale green parts only)
  • 1 medium boiling potato such as Yukon Gold
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup packed spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup milk

Halve leeks lengthwise and cut enough crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces to measure 2 cups. In a bowl of cold water wash leeks well and lift from water into a sieve to drain. Peel potato and cut enough into 1/4-inch pieces to measure 1 cup. In a 1 1/2-quart saucepan cook leeks and potato in butter with curry powder over moderate heat, stirring, 5 minutes. Stir in 2 cups water and simmer, uncovered, 20 minutes.

While soup is cooking, cut spinach into thin strips. In a blender purée soup until completely smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids) and return to pan. Add milk and salt and pepper to taste and bring to a simmer. Remove pan from heat and stir in spinach.

From Epicurious via Gourmet,


Vinegar-Marinated Chicken with Buttered Greens and Radishes

  • 2 pounds skin-on bone-in chicken thighs
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 8 radishes (or turnips), quartered, halved if small
  • 1 bunch mustard greens, leaves torn (or kale, chard, turnip greens etc.)
  • 4 tablespoons tarragon leaves, divided

Season chicken with salt and pepper and place in a large baking dish. Pour 1/4 cup vinegar over chicken and let sit 15–20 minutes. Remove chicken from marinade and pat skin dry. Reserve baking dish (no need to wipe it out).

Preheat oven to 400°F. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium. Working in batches, cook chicken, skin side down, until skin is golden brown and crisp, 8–10 minutes; turn and cook until other side is just browned, about 4 minutes. Transfer chicken to reserved baking dish; reserve skillet. Bake chicken until cooked through and an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part registers 165°F, 10–12 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat butter in same skillet over medium-high. Add radishes, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until radishes are browned and tender, about 5 minutes. Add mustard greens and toss to coat; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mustard greens are just wilted, about 2 minutes (they should still have some spring in their step). Add 2 tablespoons tarragon and remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar; toss to combine.

Serve greens and radishes with chicken topped with remaining 2 tablespoons tarragon.

From Epicurious via Bon Appétit by Alison Roman,