Summer CSA Share – #10

Welcome to the 10th share of the Pitchfork & Crow 2021 Summer CSA!  Here’s what’s in the share this week:

  • Butterhead Lettuce
  • Red or Green Cabbage
  • Cilantro
  • Tomatillos – A little like green tomatoes, tomatillos make excellent salsa verde and enchilada sauce. Check out this website for more details and recipes.
  • Cucumbers – We’ve got lots of green slicer cucumbers and some lemons for you to choose from.
  • Zucchini – We’ve got dark green, light green, and yellow zucchini this week.
  • Sweet Corn
  • Bunching Onions
  • Early Red Italian Garlic
  • Poblano Peppers – a mild chili pepper, typically with very little heat, often used for stuffing as in chile rellenos but delicious in any recipe that could use a pepper.
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Slicer Tomatoes
Transplanting continues; by the end of the day this field was full again (left) and three honey bees in an acorn squash flower (right).

A couple of weeks ago I had dinner with a farmer friend across town. We chatted about the progress of the season, the weather, and the inevitable equipment breakdowns and labor shortages that accompany the growing season on any farm. The weight of July was real and we were both feeling the steady pressure of the work. At one point she asked me if there was anything happening that excited me. It’s a question that’s stuck with me, perhaps especially because I found my answer to be lacking in the moment. All I could think of was the possibility of fall, a day off to go hiking in the mountains, the future.

In retrospect my answer felt like I was dismissing the current moment. There are a million little miracles on the farm, each one exciting to witness if you take the time to notice. The surprise of a flock of turkeys or group of deer flushed from the apple orchard. The diverse array of insects, each individual going about life at a miniature scale. The growth of thousands of plants from seed to vegetable, and sometimes all the way to fruit and seed again. Although life on the farm is not roller coaster ride exciting, or the anticipation of a big trip exciting, or having a party exciting, it certainly has its moments that I should remember not to take for granted.

Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes!

As we head into the week ahead, armed with long To Do lists and never quite enough time, I’m hopeful we’ll also be looking for the wonder hidden among the vegetables. We’re preparing to make our final big planting pushes for the fall and winter. The fields are getting full and we’re having to be a little more strategic about where we put overwintering crops. We’re beginning to plant those long season crops that will be in place into next spring! We’ll also soon be making a plan for the fall and winter high tunnel plantings. Getting everything in the ground around the tomatoes and eggplants can be quite a challenge on its own.

We hope you’re all enjoying the summer bounty! Now lets all go make some salsa!

Enjoy the vegetables and we’ll see you here next week!

Your farmers,
Carri Heisler & Jeff Bramlett

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Here are a few recipes to get you inspired:

Cold Sesame Noodles with Summer Vegetables

  • 1/3 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha (hot chili sauce)
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 8 cups matchstick-size pieces mixed summer vegetables (such as carrots, radishes, cucumbers, and bell peppers; about 1 1/4 pounds)
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 8 ounces buckwheat soba (Japanese-style noodles) or vermicelli noodles
  • 1 cup (loosely packed) cilantro leaves with tender stems
  • 3 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon black or white sesame seeds

Whisk first four ingredients in a large bowl. Add vegetables; toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook noodles in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente; drain. Run noodles under cold water to cool them; drain well and add to bowl with vegetables. Add cilantro and scallions; season to taste with salt and pepper. Sprinkle sesame seeds over and serve.

From Epicurious.com via Bon Appétit, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/cold-sesame-noodles-with-summer-vegetables-51104410

Cabbage and Corn Slaw with Cilantro and Orange Dressing

  • 1/3 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
  • 1/3 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1/3 cup canola oil or vegetable oil
  • 2 (8-ounce) bags coleslaw mix (but you’ll just slice up a cabbage)
  • 4 ears of fresh corn, shucked, kernels cut from cob
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled, coarsely grated
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, stemmed, cored, cut into thin strips
  • 6 medium green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Whisk orange juice concentrate, rice vinegar, and canola oil in small bowl. Season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD Dressing can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.

Combine slaw mix, corn kernels, carrots, red bell pepper strips, sliced green onions, and chopped cilantro in large bowl. Toss with enough dressing to coat. Season slaw to taste with salt and pepper. Let stand 15 minutes for flavors to blend. Toss again and serve.

From Epicurious.com via Bon Appétit by Pam Anderson, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/cabbage-and-corn-slaw-with-cilantro-and-orange-dressing-238803

Tomato and Tomatillo Gazpacho

  • 1/2 pound fresh tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and quartered
  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatoes, chopped, divided
  • 1/2 cup chopped white onion, divided
  • 1 fresh serrano chile, coarsely chopped, including seeds
  • 1 garlic clove, quartered
  • 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro

Puree tomatillos, half of tomatoes, and half of onion with chile, garlic, vinegar, and 1 1/4 teaspoons salt in a blender until smooth.

Force through a medium-mesh sieve into a bowl, discarding solids.

Stir in remaining tomatoes and onion, water, oil, and cilantro. Chill until cold, at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours.

From Epicurious.com via Gourmet by Andrea Albin, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/tomato-and-tomatillo-gazpacho-354967

Salsa Verde o Roja Cruda

  • 12 oz. tomatillos (about 8 medium), husks removed, rinsed, quartered, or 12 oz. tomatoes, cored, quartered
  • ½ medium avocado (optional; for making salsa verde)
  • ¼ medium white onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 serrano chile, coarsely chopped
  • ¼ cup (packed) cilantro leaves with tender stems
  • 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, plus more
  • 1–2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice (optional; for making salsa roja)

If making salsa verde, blend tomatillos, avocado, onion, garlic, chile, cilantro, and 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt in a blender on medium-low speed until salsa is smooth. Taste and season with more salt if needed. (Do not blend on higher than medium speed or your salsa will be airy and taste like a smoothie.)

If making salsa roja, blend tomatoes, onion, garlic, chile, cilantro, 1 Tbsp. lime juice, and 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt in a blender on medium-low speed until salsa is smooth. Taste and season with more salt and lime juice if needed.

Do Ahead: Salsa can be made 2 days ahead. Transfer to an airtight container; cover and chill.

From Epicurious.com via Bon Appétit by Rick Martinez, https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/salsa-verde-o-roja-cruda

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