Seeds of Hope Farm CSA Newsletter, Week 7, June 28, 2013

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This week you’ll find in your share:

Yellow Squash
Cucumber
Kale
Swiss Chard
Mustard Greens
Turnips
Garlic!
***Green Beans
Basil

Next week you might find in your share: 

• Squash
• Kale
• Chard
• Beets?
• Cabbage
• Potatoes?
• Garlic?
• Herb

From Your Farmers…

We’re still waiting to hear from some of you about eggs in your share. We are set to go on building a coop if eggs are something you want. Let Randy, Whitney or me know! Chickens would be a great way to ensure a good value in your weekly share, and would help us to offer a greater diversity. They are also a great benefit to the land, as offering pest control and healthy fertilizer.

*Quick note: when picking up your share, please be sure to take the bag with the number that corresponds to your member number. Some crops are being rotated through shares, and we want to be sure you get a taste of everything, and no one else misses out! New share pick-up sheets will be at each drop site, and they are now color coded for A and B weeks to ease the process.

This week’s cooking class and farm dinner was a hit. Operation Food Search treated us to a couple of nice quick summer dishes that are best served cold. And shared with your friends, because they were delicious. Recipes to come in later weeks. Come and join us July 23 for a surefire treat. RSVP by Friday the 19th to save your spot!

As we’d mentioned a few weeks ago, the shares are beginning to thin during the transition into summer. Some summer crops are still on the lag from the cold spring. Tomatoes and cherry tomatoes are a few weeks away, but other favorites like garlic, potatoes, and carrots will find their way to you very soon. The beets we thought we’d offer this week are holding out..for what we’re not sure.  But they will come around.

While we’re on spring, we’d like to hear your thoughts about the spring shares. How do you feel overall about what you’ve received? Would you like to see more of something, less of another, or something not at all? Were the shares too big, small, or do we need diversity? We can’t improve without your feedback, so please let us know how you feel. Email me at ghahn@caastlc.org or call 314.566.8643. Really, we’d love to hear what you think.

We have decided that starting July 13, we will be hosting a monthly open house the second Saturday of each month. Each event will feature a tour, farm fresh food, and the opportunity to take part in the growing of your food. The amount of satisfaction received from jumping in is quite surprising, in a really good way. We are inviting you, our members, neighbors, and anyone who is interested in getting to know our farm, how it works, how to grow their own food, or who just wants to lend a hand or spend a morning under the golden sun in a beautiful setting.

Food For Thought…

The summer squash has turned out to be relatively productive. It should be showing up for a while, and we’ll likely send a recipe your way so you don’t feel squashed by getting the same vegetable every week. As for now, drop that yellow goodness into a pan of softened garlic and onions cooking in olive oil. Add salt when the squash softens and you’ve got a meal.

As for cucumbers, we’re not sure how long this first planting will last, but more will come. You will find a small, but nice head of garlic or two in your share this week. This garlic is so fresh it hasn’t fully cured. No need to keep it in the fridge, just out of the sun and it will cure and last. Enjoy!

Recipe of the Week: Green Soup… from CSA member Nancy Hartman

Yes, we know. Each share has been packed with greens. It’s just that time of year. And to maximize the health benefits of all the other veggies you receive, the body needs its greens. If you’re feeling overloaded with them, keep in mind tips from previous weeks on how to blanch and freeze them, slip them into almost any dish, (even in your scrambled eggs) , or, do what we have been at farm lunch: take any green- kale, chard, even mustards for the daring, strip the stems, drop the leaves into a bowl, squeeze a lemon over top, toss and let sit for a few minutes. Then top with whatever’s on hand for a nice salad. The lemon juice helps to tenderize the greens to a leaf more akin to lettuce. If that’s not for you, here’s a summer soup, great hot or cold. Nancy shared some of this soup with us this week and our taste buds are grateful.

-Adapted from Anna Thomas , Eating Well, Sept./Oct/ 2011 by farm member Nancy Hartman. Thanks for the delicious recipe, Nancy!

“Here’s the concept of green soup: use any (and as many) green vegetables as you like. Puree it if you want a creamy soup. Basic Green Soup uses spinach and chard, with Arborio rice for thickness.”-Anna Thomas

Yield:  8 servings, 1 and 1/4 cups each

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for garnish
2 large yellow onions, chopped
1 teaspoon salt, divided (omit if using broth with salt)
2 tablespoons plus 2 and 1/2 cups water, divided
3/4 cup cooked rice
1 bunch green chard (about 1 pound) or other greens
14 cups gently packed spinach (about 12 ounces), any tough stems trimmed, or other greens
4 cups vegetable broth, store-bought or homemade
Big pinch of cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon lemon juice, or more to taste

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add onions and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook, stirring frequently, until the onions begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Reduce the heat to low, add 2 tablespoons water and cover. Cook, stirring frequently until the pan cools down, and then occasionally, always covering the pan again, until the onions are greatly reduced and have a deep caramel color, 25 to 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, put 2 and 1/2 cups water in a soup pot or Dutch oven and add the chard and other greens, bring to a boil and boil for 10 to 15 minutes. When the onions are caramelized, add a little of the simmer liquid into them; add them to the rice along with the spinach, broth and cayenne. Return to a simmer, cover and cook, stirring once, until the spinach is tender but still bright green, about 5 minutes more.

3. Puree the soup in the pot with an immersion blender until perfectly smooth or in a regular blender in batches (return it to the pot). Stir in 1 tablespoon lemon juice. Taste and add more lemon juice, if desired. Garnish each bowl of soup with a drizzle of olive oil. Serve hot or cold.

Note 1 from Nancy: for the soup I made this week, I used the greens delivered last Friday: swiss chard leaves (about 8 cups), radish greens and stems (4-5 cups), and turnip greens and stems (8 cups).

Note 2: I didn’t have Arborio rice so I just used plain white rice. No doubt other substitutions are possible; the point is to add a thickener.

Upcoming Events:

Join us Saturday, July 20 for Family Fun at the Farm, from 9 AM to 2 PM. We will have activity stations featuring vegetable face painting, making bird feeders, learning about bees, how they make honey and contribute to the farm, and harvesting cherry tomatoes, attendees will receive a potted herb to take home. And more!

Farm Wish List:

-empty gallon jugs

-compost (your food scraps, coffee grounds,

-hands to help control bindweed and Bermuda grass

-empty electrical wire wide spools from 2-8 feet wide. (we use them to store greenhouse plastic and row cover)

 

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