Summer CSA Share – #5

Welcome to the 5th share of the Pitchfork & Crow Summer CSA!  Here’s what’s in the share this week:

  • Green Cabbage
  • Beets
  • Broccoli
  • Mixed Cucumbers!
  • Butterhead Lettuce
  • Salad Mix – a mix of several lettuces
  • Leek FlowersRemember the leek scapes from last week?  If they hadn’t been harvested earlier this season they’d have eventually opened up into these amazing flowers.  The individual flowers make a wonderful peppery addition to salads, or anything really.
  • Green Beans
  • Scallions
  • Mixed Summer Squash – choose from Dark Star zucchini, Magda cousa, and yellow straightneck summer squash

Farm Pick-up Members: There have been some questions about tomorrow’s pick-up and the holiday.  The on-farm pick-up will happen during the normal 4-6pm window on Wednesday.  If you can’t make it just shoot me an email to arrange a time later in the week to pick-up your share.  Thanks!

Scenes from today’s harvest: beets! (left) and honey bees digging the leek flowers (right)

We’ve made it to July!  Summer in the Pacific Northwest really gets underway in July, as do summer crops.  We’re on the cusp of the deluge of tomatoes and peppers and sweet corn and all the other heat loving vegetables that make summer delicious.  This first week of July we’ll have to settle for more spring greens, but hurrah for sweet beets and spicy leek flowers and the best of both lettuce worlds including butterhead lettuce and salad mix!  Not the worst way to wait out the arrival of summer crops.

Time to seed pumpkins (left) and weekend sweet corn planting (right)

On the farm things continue to truck along.  I harvested the overwintered kale seed crop and it is now drying down in the barn before threshing commences.  Every year we grow one or two brassica seed crops for our friends at Adaptive Seeds and this past year we grew Madeley Kale, a vigorous green heirloom from England.  After planting it out last August, this harvest has been a long time coming.

On Saturday Jeff got his farming on!  He was a huge help in getting some ground prepped and planted for the latest succession of sweet corn.  Faced with a sea of corn transplants on Saturday morning I wasn’t sure they were going to make it into the ground on time given the other tasks of the day.  I was thankful for his willingness to jump on the tractor and help chisel the ground, then hook up the fertilizer spreader,  then move irrigation pipe while I spread organic fertilizer, and then drive the tractor with the water wheel transplanter attached while I planted the four and half beds of corn.  My hero for reals!

We hiked up Bachelor Mountain (left) and the view of Mt. Jefferson from the top (right)

With the corn plants in the ground, the latest rounds of direct sown seeds planted, and somehow having caught up on irrigation, we headed for the hills on Sunday.  We hiked up Bachelor Mountain, just west of Mt. Jefferson, and enjoyed the views of the high Cascades from Mt. Adams up in Washington down to Mt. Shasta in California.  It’s a short two mile hike in, but some elevation gain slows the pace (especially for our our aging dog Ira Hayes), and the but the wildflowers were on display and a stroll in the woods was just the ticket.  It’s a whole different world up there and a wonderful contrast with the flat land of the farm down here in the valley.  It’s good to get a different perspective on things every now and then.

Enjoy the vegetables!

Your farmers,
Carri Heisler and Jeff Bramlett

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Cabbage Wedges with Warm Pancetta Vinaigrette

  • 1 small head red or green cabbage (2 pounds or less)
  • 5 tablespoons good-quality olive oil
  • 4 ounces thickly sliced pancetta, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar or white wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper

Start the coals or heat a gas grill for medium direct cooking. Make sure the grates are clean.

Discard any discolored outer leaves from the cabbage, cut it into 8 wedges, then trim the stem a bit but leave enough on to keep the wedges together. Brush the cabbage on all sides with 2 tablespoons of the oil.

Put the cabbage on the grill directly over the fire, cut side down. Close the lid and cook until the bottom browns, about 5 minutes; turn and cook the other side. Transfer to a platter.

While the cabbage is grilling, put the pancetta in a small skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until it renders its fat and the meat crisps, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the vinegar and remaining 3 tablespoons oil, and whisk to combine; taste and add some salt and pepper. (You can make the vinaigrette up to a day ahead; refrigerate and gently reheat it before using.) Pour the hot dressing over the cabbage wedges and serve.

From Epicurious via How to Grill Everything by Mark Bittman, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/cabbage-wedges-with-warm-pancetta-vinaigrette

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Creamy Beet Dip

  • 1 1/2 pounds beets, halved
  • Parchment paper
  • 3/4 cup light sour cream
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • Pinch ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • Whole-wheat pita wedges (optional)

Heat oven to 425°F. Roast beets on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, turning once halfway through, until soft, 45 to 60 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. Peel beets under running water. In a food processor, combine beets, sour cream, 2 teaspoons juice, cardamom, salt and garlic; blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and garnish with zest to taste. Serve with pita, if desired.

From Epicurious via SELF by Liz Schoenfein, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/creamy-beet-dip-51170810

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Coconut Zucchini Noodles and Spiced Meatballs

For the spiced meatballs:

  • 1 pound ground pasture-raised lamb
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 2 scallions, sliced paper-thin
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon wheat-free tamari
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce (Red Boat is a Clean-approved brand)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice

For the noodles:

  • 2 to 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup sliced onions
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons minced lemongrass
  • 1 red chile pepper, minced (optional)
  • 1 (13.5-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 broccoli crown, cut into small florets (about 2 cups)
  • 3/4 to 1 pound zucchini, ends removed and sliced lengthwise with a peeler or mandoline into long pappardelle-like “noodles”
  • Sea salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 lime, cut into wedges

First, prepare the meatballs. In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients for the meatballs and mix them thoroughly with your hands or a wooden spoon. Wet your hands, then form even-size balls. I usually go for about the size of a golf ball.

Heat a 4-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Melt the coconut oil, and once it’s nice and hot, add the meatballs. Cook them for 30 to 45 seconds on each side, until they are all nicely browned. When they are about halfway done browning, make some space in the center of the pan and add the onions, garlic, lemongrass, and optional red chile. Continue to cook the mixture for 1 to 2 minutes, then move the meatballs back into the center of the pan and add the coconut milk and water. Cover the pan and simmer for about 5 more minutes before adding the broccoli. Within a few minutes the broccoli should be tender and the coconut milk reduced and starting to thicken. Carefully fold in the zucchini noodles and allow them to cook in the liquid. Cook them just until the zucchini is tender. Salt to taste.

Serve with a garnish of cilantro and a squeeze of lime.

From Epicurious via Clean Eats by Alejandro Junger, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/coconut-zucchini-noodles-and-spiced-meatballs

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