- Tree fruit shares begin this week with two varieties of sweet cherries Next week we should have apricots also. For those members with fruit only shares please be sure to sign out them out at your distribution sites.
Farm News from Jane
What a gorgeous full moon the last few nights. The shadows casted from the large leafy maples are especially spectacular. I often wonder what the nocturnal animals think this time of month. Are they “dancing in the moonlight”?
The blueberries continue to ripen albeit a bit slower when the night air is in the low fifties. Hopefully we’ll have enough to harvest to begin sharing next week. Our early cabbage crop which has grown its way out of the flea beetle damage is finally sizing up for harvest. This is such a wonderful time of year with so many different veggies to anticipate.
This season however, seems to be a bit difficult for all us farmers between the heavy rains in some areas and insect and deer devastation in other areas. I’m so glad that we plant enough to “share”, although Ben did decide to protect the coming bean plantings as the deer have enjoyed the first few planting a bit too heartily… Daniel plants beans weekly and so there should be lots of beans coming… The sweet corn looks great and with the occasional rains and heat it is growing quickly. Knee high by the fourth of July is almost accurate for the first planting. Beans and corn are planted successively so that one planting is followed by another if the weather cooperates. Sometimes, like with peas, two plantings are ready for harvest simultaneously and so either one planting is a loss or like this week’s some get over mature and the yield is decreased. That is the nature of growing plants; they “take advantage” of the perfect growing conditions and speed up their targeted harvest date. While we were talking and harvesting this morning, how do the animals “know” when the produce is “perfect” for eating without seeming to sample the wares? They just “know” and then invade. Is it by smell? Although we sometimes refer to them as “dumb animals” they sure have us beat when it comes to some abilities!!!
We are all excited to begin enjoying the local tree fruit. Local, fresh tree ripened fruit in season is like a whole different eating experience; just like a vine ripened tomato it’s almost defies our vocabulary to describe.
We hope that you enjoy the experience as much as we do. Eat well and enjoy, Jane
Produce: Shelling peas Swiss chard Scallions Zucchini
Yellow squash Garlic scapes Chioggia beets Head lettuce
Fruit Share: Summit and Hedelfingen or Lapin sweet cherries
- Shelling peas are easiest shelled by starting at the stem ends and unzipping them. They are a mix of maturity; the bigger pods are best for a layered or pasta salad or even blanch and freeze for a soup or stew.
- Chioggia beets are the “candy striped” variety. They really stand out beautifully on a salad plated if thinly sliced on a mandolin and soaked in vinaigrette for a short time as the vinegar softens and actually “cook” them a bit.
- Swiss chard: Substitute the chard for spinach in any recipe calling for spinach or cooked greens.
- Sweet cherries are more difficult to pit than their tart cousins. If you do not have a cherry pitter they do sell them at Wegman’s or we have used a paperclip or bobby pin in a pinch.
RAW BEET AND APPLE SALAD
For the Salad:1 bunch of Chioggia beets, 2 medium size apples, 1 handful of mixed salad leaves, ⅓ c. fresh basil, zest of 1 lime
For the Dressing: ½ c. goat cheese, 1 tbsp. fresh lime juice, 2 tbsp. milk, 1 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tsp. honey
Zest your lime and reserve it for the salad. Blitz all of the salad dressing ingredients in a mini food processor (you can also do this by hand with a whisk and room temperature goat cheese). Season with salt and pepper to taste. The flavor should be tangy with a hint of sweetness. For the salad: Get yourself a large bowl. Trim and peel your beets with a vegetable peeler. If the tops look good, wash them and save for stir frys and salads. Thinly slice with a mandolin. Thinly slice your apples and keep them stacked. Cut vertically into matchsticks. Add the beets and apples to the bowl. Add a little dressing and season with salt and pepper. Let it sit for 10 minutes or so to soften. Tear up the basil leaves. Add the basil and salad leaves to the bowl. Give it a good toss and taste to see if it needs more seasoning or dressing. Evenly sprinkle the lime zest on top. Serve straight away.
Notes: The key to this dish is to slice everything as thin as possible and let it marinate in the bowl for a bit. Using a mandolin is perfect for this. The acidity from the dressing softens the beets, kind of like coleslaw. If it’s too chunky, it’s going to be too crunchy.
* Refrigerate any extra goat cheese dressing in an airtight container. It will keep for about a week.
BEETS A LA CREME
1/8 cup real butter; 1/2 cup heavy cream; 4 medium beets, cooked; Freshly ground pepper to taste; 1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley; Salt to taste
Cut beets in thick julienne strips, cube, or slice as you prefer. In a large skillet, melt butter. Add beets and sauté for 2 minutes, stirring to coat beets evenly with butter. Season with salt; add cream and continue to cook until reduced to glaze just coating beets. Sprinkle heavily with pepper and parsley. Serve immediately; Serves 3
MARINATED BEET AND SUMMER SQUASH SALAD
2 Medium-size beets, cooked, peeled and thinly sliced; 4 bunching onions, thinly sliced; 1/4 Cup olive oil; 3 Tbsp tarragon vinegar; 1/2 Tbsp sugar; 2 Small yellow summer squash (or zucchini, or a combination), cut into 1/4-inch slices; 1 Tbsp minced dill; 3/4 Cup sour cream; Salt and black pepper; 2 Scallions, each with 3 inches green top, coarsely chopped
Directions: Toss together the beets and onions with 1/8 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons vinegar and 1/2 tablespoon sugar. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. In another bowl toss together the squash slices, the remainder of the oil and vinegar, and the dill. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Just prior to serving, drain the squash and toss all the vegetables together with the sour cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper, adding additional sugar and vinegar if desired for a more distinctive sweet-and-sour taste; 3 servings
PESTO- TOPPED GRILLED SUMMER SQUASH
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil; 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts; 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil; 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese; 1 clove garlic, minced; 2 teaspoons lemon juice; 1/4 teaspoon salt; 2 medium summer squash (about 1 pound), sliced diagonally 1/4 inch thick; Canola or olive oil cooking spray
Preheat grill to medium-high. Combine basil, pine nuts, oil, Parmesan, garlic, lemon juice and salt in a small bowl. Coat both sides of squash slices with cooking spray. Grill the squash until browned and tender, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Serve topped with the pesto. Makes 4 servings
2 small summer squash; 1 ½ cups onion, sliced; 1 tbsp olive oil; 1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary plus more to garnish; 11/4 tsp salt; 11/4 tsp freshly ground pepper; 11/4 cup thinly sliced garlic
Preheat oven to 450°F. Quarter squash lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces. Combine the squash with sliced onion, oil, rosemary, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Spread the mixture evenly on a large, rimmed baking sheet. Roast for 10 minutes. Stir in garlic and roast until the vegetables are tender and the fennel is beginning to brown, about 5 minutes more. Stir in extra rosemary and serve. Makes 4 servings, about 2/3 cup each.
Adapted from Eating Well magazine
COLD ZUCCHINI AND SUMMER SQUASH SOUP ADAPTED FROM BON APPETIT
2-3 tbsp olive oil and maybe some butter, 1 medium onion, sliced or chopped 2 garlic cloves, sliced or crushed, your choice, 6-9 medium zucchini or summer squash, or a mix, 4 cups broth, sour cream, for garnish
*You’ll need a blender or an immersion blender for this. Because you will be blending everything smooth, it doesn’t matter how well you slice or chop the vegetables—great, right? But, large chunks still probably aren’t a good idea because that will affect cooking time. What I’m saying is: do a mediocre job at chopping, but not a sloppy one. In a large pot over medium heat, cook the onions and garlic in the olive oil and/or butter until they’re brown. It sounds pretentious but, if you are patient and cook the onion until it’s really brown and delicious, that taste will infiltrate the rest of your soup and it’s totally worth the extra time. Add zucchini and summer squash, toss with the onions. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover, lower heat to a simmer, and cook 10 minutes, until zucchini are tender. Let cool to lukewarm and blend. Serve lukewarm or cold. Garnish with sour cream—it’s kind of great because the soup is somehow, mysteriously, creamy and the sour cream adds a nice tanginess.
3 Tbsp olive oil; 1/4 c finely chopped romaine lettuce; 1 1/2 lbs shelled fresh peas; 1/4 c minced shallots or white part of green onion; 1 large sprig parsley; 2 tsp sugar; 1 tsp salt; 1/8 tsp white pepper ~ Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add lettuce, peas, shallots, parsley, sugar, salt and pepper. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, 10-15 minutes, or until peas are just tender. Stir occasionally- Remove parsley sprig before serving. Makes 6 servings
4 lettuce leaves, shredded; 1 cup shelled fresh peas; 1/6 cup sliced green onions; 1/2 teaspoon sugar; Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste 1/8 cup heavy cream; 1/2 teaspoon cream-style horseradish; 1/2 tablespoon minced fresh parsley; 1 tablespoon real butter, melted
Place moist lettuce leaves in bottom of l0-inch skillet or heavy saucepan. Sprinkle peas over lettuce and top with green onions, sugar, sprinkle of salt, and pepper. Cover and simmer 10 to 12 minutes or until peas are tender. Raise heat and reduce any moisture from pan, being careful not to scorch peas. Remove lettuce if desired. Whip cream; add horseradish and parsley. Fold in butter and mix with peas. Serve immediately. Serves 3
SWISS CHARD BREAKFAST BURRITOS
approximately 3 cups cooked and seasoned Swiss chard*; 2 cups milk; 1 tablespoon flour; 6-8 flour tortillas; 1 teaspoon mustard powder; 2-3 cups shredded cheese (like cheddar or Swiss), divided; salsa; sour cream; 4 eggs, beaten
Oil a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Divide cooked chard down center of tortillas. Sprinkle each pile of chard with 3 tablespoons cheese. Roll up tortillas and place seam side down in prepared pan. Mix eggs, milk, flour, and mustard powder. Pour over tortillas. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight. The next day, let burritos come to room temperature. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake until eggs are set, about 45 minutes. Sprinkle remaining cheese of). Top and cover for last 5 minutes of baking. Serve with salsa and sour cream. This recipe can be adapted to use a variety of seasonal vegetables. Makes 4-6 servings
*It’s best to start by sautéing some onions and garlic; then add Swiss chard, cook it, and season it with salt, peppers, and fresh herbs (dill is delicious).
SWISS CHARD QUICHE
1 lb. Swiss chard or spinach, cook and drain thoroughly; 4 eggs, beaten; 1 cup milk; 1 cup Swiss cheese shredded; 1 cup bread cubed; 1/2 cup sliced green onions; 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated. Combine all ingredients with cooked greens. Pour into 2 quart baking dish. Cover and bake in 375degree oven until set, 25-30 min.
GARLIC SCAPE PESTO
8 oz. scapes cut in 1 in. pieces and processed with 1 cup Olive oil, 2 cups Parmesan cheese and ½ cup lemon juice.
Layered salad is pretty self-explanatory; the idea of layering whatever veggies over greens and topping with cheese or even julienne strips of meat garnish with olives or hard boiled eggs. So be creative and if you’re also entertaining start with a glass bowl. Start with your greens then layer with shelled raw peas, zucchini, and celery if it’s on hand, and green onions. Add a layer of Swiss cheese or meat julienne or finely chopped. Sprinkle with 2 tsp of sugar. Mix together 1/2 cup mayo, 1/4 cup sour cream and 1 T. of horseradish if desired until well blended. Spread evenly over the top. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of Romano cheese. Cover and chill overnight. Serve with the following Vinaigrette dressing if desired.
Vinaigrette: 1/2 cup olive or vegetable oil 3 T wine vinegar, 1/2 tsp. salt. Pepper to taste (freshly ground is always a nice touch), and 1/2 tsp. of dry mustard. Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend well.
Serve over layered salad. Garnish with black olives and sieved hard-boiled eggs.
*You may always substitute yogurt for some of the mayo or sour cream.
CHARLEMAGNE SALAD WITH HOT BRIE DRESSING
Salad greens; 1/4 cup white wine vinegar; 1 tablespoon lemon juice; garlic croutons; 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard; 1/4 cup olive oil; 4-5 ounces ripe brie, rind removed, cheese cut, or cheese of your choice; 2 teaspoons minced shallots or green onions into small pieces and brought to room temperature; 1 teaspoon minced garlic; freshly ground pepper
Clean the greens; dry them in a salad spinner or kitchen towels. Tear greens into bite-size pieces and toss with garlic croutons in a large bowl. Warm oil in a heavy skillet. Add shallots or onions and garlic and cook until golden, 3-5 minutes. Blend in vinegar, lemon juice, and mustard. Add the cheese a little at a time, stirring constantly. Toss the hot dressing with the greens and croutons. Serve immediately with freshly ground pepper. Makes 6 servings
Recipe from Matthew and Susan Smith, Blue Valley Gardens
WILTED LETTUCE SALAD
Makes 3 servings
3 slices bacon; 1 1/2 Tbsp red wine vinegar; 1/2 T lemon juice; 1 Tbsp water; 1 tsp sugar; 1/4 tsp ground black pepper; 4 c leaf lettuce – washed, dried and torn into bite-sized pieces; 3 green onions, thinly sliced; 1 hard-cooked egg (optional)
Cook bacon over medium high heat until evenly brown. Remove from skillet, crumble and set aside. Reserve drippings. Combine lettuce and green onions in large bowl. To the hot bacon drippings, add vinegar, lemon juice, water, sugar and pepper. Stir over medium heat until hot and sugar is dissolved. Add warm dressing and toss to evenly coat. Sprinkle with bacon. If desired, garnish with egg. Serve immediately.
SPRING GREENS RISOTTO
3 Tbsp olive oil; 1/2 c chopped green onions; 1 1/2 c Arborio rice; 1/2 tsp salt; 4 c hot chicken or vegetable broth, divided; 4 c coarsely chopped spring greens (spinach, chard, sorrel); 1/4 tsp grated nutmeg (optional); 1/2 c grated Parmesan cheese
Heat oil in heavy pot over medium- high heat. Add onions; cook 3 minutes. Add rice and salt. Cook and stir until rice begins to color. 2. Add 1/2 c broth; cook and stir until most of broth is absorbed. Add 1 1/2 c broth; simmer, stirring occasionally, until mostly absorbed, about 10 minutes. Add remaining broth. Simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Place greens on top of rice. Cover and simmer 3 minutes. Stir in greens. Simmer and stir a few minutes more until broth is absorbed and rice is tender but moist. Remove from heat. Stir in Parmesan and serve.
Makes 6 servings; Recipe from Farm-Fresh Recipes
DOUBLE CHOCOLATE ZUCCHINI CAKE
3/4 cup oil; 11/4 cups sugar; 2 eggs; 1 tsp vanilla; 2 cups grated zucchini; 1/2 cup sour milk or buttermilk; 3 tbsp cocoa; 1/2 tsp baking powder; 1 tsp baking soda; 1/2 tsp each cinnamon and cloves; 2 1/2 cups flour; small bag of chocolate chips
Heat oven to 350 degrees; grease a 9-by-13-inch pan. Mix all ingredients and bake 30-35 minutes. Makes 16 servings. Recipe from Scotch Hill Farm
CHERRY-ALMOND LOAF CAKE
1 cup blanched almonds; 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour; 1 teaspoon baking powder; 1/2 teaspoon sea salt; 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature; 3/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar 3 eggs, at room temperature; 1/4 teaspoon almond extract; 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract; 2 1/2 cups pitted cherries; confectioners’ sugar
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Butter and flour a 5×8-inch loaf pan. Coarsely chop the almonds in a food processor. Remove 1/4 cup and set it aside. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt to the remaining almonds and process until the mixture is smooth. Transfer to a bowl. Cream the butter with the 3/4 cup sugar in the food processor, then add the eggs one at a time, incorporating each one fully as you go. Add the flavorings, then half the flour-almond mixture. Pulse several times to incorporate. Add the remainder and pulse until smooth. Scrape into the prepared pan and cover with the cherries. Mix the reserved almonds with the teaspoon of sugar and sprinkle over the top of the cake. Bake the cake for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Let cool in the pan, then turn it out and transfer to a cake plate. Dust with confectioners’ sugar just before serving. Serves 8; Recipe from Local Flavors
ARBORIO RICE PUDDING WITH FRESH CHERRIES
4 cups milk; 1/3 cup Arborio rice; 1 large egg; l/3 cup sugar; 1 teaspoon vanilla extract; 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon; 1 pound fresh cherries, stemmed and pitted
In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, warm the milk. Stir in the rice. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Stir the egg mixture into the milk and rice until well blended. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring almost constantly, until the mixture thickens, about 30 minutes. Stir in the cherries. Remove from the heat and let cool. Spoon the mixture into 6 custard cups and cool completely. Serve at room temperature or chilled. Serves 6
Recipe from The Big Book of Vegetarian