Summer CSA Share – #15

Welcome to the 15th share of the Pitchfork & Crow Summer CSA!  Here’s what’s in the share this week:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Sweet Onions
  • Cucumber
  • Mixed Summer Squash – choose from Dark Star zucchini, Magda cousa, yellow pattypan, and yellow straightneck summer squash
  • Brussels Sprouts Tops – At the beginning of September we like to snap off the top of the Brussels sprout plants to help them focus their energy on forming sprouts.  Luckily for all of us the tops are a tasty greens treat.  Just treat them like kale and eat them with everything.
  • Sweet Corn
  • Basil
  • Jalapeno Peppers
  • Jimmy Nardello Sweet Peppers
  • Yellow & Green Beans
  • Tomatoes – Cherries and Slicers
  • Mixed Melons – Choose from Tirreno Tuscan Melons or Honey Orange Honeydew

Winter CSA memberships are open!  Head over to the Winter CSA information page to get all the details, including a link to the sign-up form.  Just 8 spots remaining as of this writing.

Evidence of a little rain overnight this week (left) and threshing and winnowing kale seed this past week (right)

I think this is my favorite time of year.  The crisp mornings, the crunch of fallen leaves underfoot, the return of the rain to the parched landscape.  And on the farm this is when all the hard work of the previous several months pays off big.  Although produce has been harvested and distributed to you guys for months now, the season-long bulk crops are ready for storage.  This past weekend Jeff helped bring in the storage onions.  Soon the second cooler will be full of potatoes.  The winter squash will be headed for storage bins shortly as well.

While I’m always impressed with each harvest from the farm, from lettuce to corn  to zucchini, the big fall harvests are maybe the most rewarding.  The time investment of caring for the plants for months, making sure they get enough water and weeding and fending off the wildlife, makes good harvests all the sweeter and poor harvests more of a gut punch.  All in all this season is shaping up to be a good one.  With each bin of onions or potatoes pulled from the field it’s an especially great feeling to think “Hey, look at what I grew!”

Enjoy the vegetables!

Your farmers,
Carri Heisler and Jeff Bramlett

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Broccoli and Cauliflower Casserole

  • 1 cauliflower head
  • 1 large broccoli head
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt, more to taste
  • Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika, plus more for sprinkling
  • 1/3 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Monterey Jack cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Using your hands, break the cauliflower and broccoli into very small florets. Place them in a steamer and steam them over simmering water until slightly tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Set them aside.

3. Melt 6 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium heat, then add the onion and garlic and cook until the onion is translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle in the flour, stirring it into the onion mixture and cook it for a minute or so. Pour in the broth, stirring continuously, and cook the sauce, stirring occasionally, until it begins to thicken, about 3 minutes.

4. Add the cream cheese and stir until it melts completely. Then stir in the seasoned salt, kosher salt, pepper, and paprika. Turn off the heat and set the sauce aside.

5. In a small bowl, combine the breadcrumbs and the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter and blend with a fork.

6. To assemble, butter a small (2-quart) casserole and add half the broccoli-cauliflower mixture. Pour on half the sauce, top with half the cheese, and sprinkle on a little paprika. Repeat another round of the veggies, sauce, cheese, and paprika…then top the casserole with the buttery breadcrumbs.

7. Bake the casserole for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the breadcrumbs are golden and the casserole is bubbly around the edges. Serve it nice and piping hot!

From Epicurious.com via The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Dinnertime by Ree Drummond, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/broccoli-cauliflower-casserole

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Mexican Corn

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup chopped zucchini
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño chili
  • 1/2 cup purchased salsa
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add corn, red bell pepper, zucchini, green onions and jalapeño and sautê until vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes. Mix in salsa and chopped cilantro. Stir until heated through, about 1 minute. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

From Epicurious.com via Bon Appétit by Rosie Bialowas, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/mexican-corn-666

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Kale, Tomato, and Lemon Magic One-Pot Spaghetti

  • 14 ounces/400 g spaghetti or linguine
  • 14 ounces/400 g cherry tomatoes
  • Zest of 2 large unwaxed lemons
  • 7 tablespoons/100 ml olive oil
  • 2 heaping teaspoons flaky sea salt (if you are using fine-grain table salt, add a bit less)
  • 1 (14-ounce/400-g) bunch of kale or spinach (or Brussels Sprout Tops!)
  • Parmesan cheese (I use a vegetarian one) (optional)

Fill and boil a kettle of water and get all your ingredients and equipment together. You need a large, shallow pan with a lid.

Put the pasta into the pan. Quickly chop the tomatoes in half and throw them into the pan. Grate in the zest of both lemons and add the oil and salt. Add about 1 quart/1 liter of boiling water, put a lid on the pan, and bring back to a boil. Remove the lid and simmer on high heat for 6 minutes, using a pair of tongs to turn the pasta every 30 seconds or so as it cooks.

Meanwhile, remove any tough stalks from the kale or spinach and coarsely tear the leaves. Once the pasta has had 6 minutes, add the kale and continue to cook for a further 2 minutes.

Once almost all the water has evaporated, take the pan off the heat and tangle the pasta into four bowls. If you like, top with a little Parmesan.

From Epicurious.com via A Modern Way to Cook by Anna Jones, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/kale-tomato-and-lemon-magic-one-pot-spaghetti

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