Farm News from Jane
The heat and dry spell is finally broken! The pond level has risen and we are delighted to have puddles again on the farm. And so were a few grandchildren who enjoyed splashing in the rain as well as the puddles. The simple pleasures of life… They have also been enjoying the peaches. Is it just this year or are the peaches so absolutely sweet and heavenly every year? I almost feel guilty using any of them to make a pie. The kale has returned after a hiatus of six weeks. The flea beetles have finally satiated their appetite for the kale and the plants have made a great recovery. The cooler weather should also help them continue to grow lush and strong. The beans however continue to be high on the nutritional diet for our four footed deer “friends”. The green beans we harvested today are just perfect; slender, tender and bursting with flavor. We were able to harvest quite a few even though so many of the earlier leaves and blossoms were nibbled off! Hopefully there will be another harvest of green beans and one more of yellow before they bean season is over. The peppers and eggplant are setting new blossoms and we hope for another “round” of fruit from them also! But upward and onward as we begin the second half of the summer share season. Although the earliest planting of crucifers are fewer in number due to the summer heat they are now growing nicely all except for the bok choy which sadly did not produce enough to share. The first cutting of broccoli is only a few weeks away. All of the onions have been pulled and are drying down either in the greenhouse or the field. Somehow the job seemed quite easy this season; either due to the many hands or the crop was considerably lighter this year but regardless the onions are all “gathered in”. The winter squash vines are dying down early and the acorn squash we peeked at on Saturday are already showing “cure” spots. Winter squash ripeness (except for the butternut) can be established by the deep orange spot on the side where they lay on the ground. The spaghetti squash should be ready and may replace the summer squash in the next share or two. Do I hear a “hurray” for the end of summer squash! The last planting of cucumbers did not survive the humid heat and succumbed to powdery mildew. We are hoping that the winter squash matures well before those diseases become an issue. There are already orange pumpkins so autumn can’t be too far off. The golden rod in bloom as well as the ragweed also tells the same story. Perhaps it makes the inevitable “back to school” days seem more bearable if it looks like autumn… We are enjoying a reprieve from the heat and humidity and gives us a “shot in the arm” to prepare us for the heavy root harvest that lies ahead in the coming month; potatoes, rutabaga, leeks, and lots and lots of beets. But of course everyone is probably looking forward to the tasty crucifers, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts anyone? Eleven glorious weeks of delicious nutrient dense veggies to go!!!
Enjoy the refreshing cooler temperatures and cutting your grass again! Jane
Produce: Red potatoes Red onions Garlic Green beans Kale
Sweet corn Tomatoes Summer squash Head lettuce
Fruit Share: Donuts Peaches Plums
– SUMMER SQUASH: This may be the last week for summer squash so enjoy or freeze for sweet breads this winter!
– KALE leaves are small but tender and their size will increase as the temperatures cool down.
– RED ONIONS have a flat side which we have never seen like this before. It must be that the soil temperature was so hot that they literally dehydrated as they matured! We try and share them all in the next few weeks as we are unsure of how they will store for winter use.
– SWEET CORN: If I haven’t remembered to share with you; sweet corn should be refrigerated (if it lasts past the first night).To cook place in boiling water and let it return to a boil for just 2-3 minutes. NO salt or sugar in the water please!
– TOMATOES should not be refrigerated.
CREAMY CORN AND SHALLOTS
6 ears of corn (aprox.3 cups), 2T unsalted butter, 2 shallots finely diced, sea salt and freshly ground pepper, ¼ cream, 1 T chopped parsley; torn basil leaves, or chopped dill
Shuck the corn and remove the kernels with a sharp knife, cutting no more than two thirds of the way into the kernel. Reverse your knife and force out the scrapings, keeping them separate from the kernels.
Melt butter in a wide nonstick skillet. Add the shallots and cook over medium heat for 2 minutes. Add the corn kernels, sprinkle with ½ t. of salt and raise the heat. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the scrapings and the cream and cook for 1 minute more. Turn off the heat, season with pepper, and stir in the herb.
CHILLED COCNUT CORN SOUP
2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, 1 medium onion, finely chopped, 1 (1/2″) piece ginger, peeled, finely chopped (about 1 1/2 teaspoons), 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided, plus more to taste, 6 ears of corn, kernels cut off (about 5 1/2 cups), cobs reserved, 1 Yukon Gold potato (about 5 ounces) peeled, cut into 1/2″ cubes, 1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk, 2 (2″) strips lime zest, 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, Diced avocado, cilantro leaves with tender stems, and lime wedges (for serving)
Melt coconut oil over medium heat in a large pot. Add onion, ginger, turmeric, and 1/2 tsp. salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent, 8–10 minutes. Break corn cobs in half and add to pot along with corn kernels, potato, coconut milk, lime zest, and 1 1/2 cups water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a simmer and cook until potato is tender, 20–25 minutes. Discard corn cobs and lime zest, then transfer soup to a blender. Add 1/2 tsp. salt and purée until smooth. Let cool to room temperature. Transfer to a large bowl and chill, covered, at least 2 hours. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F. Spread coconut flakes on a small rimmed baking sheet and toast, tossing occasionally, until golden, about 5 minutes; transfer to a plate. Stir lime juice into soup and adjust seasonings, thinning with water, if needed. Divide soup among bowls, then top with toasted coconut, avocado, and cilantro. Serve with lime wedges alongside. Do Ahead: Soup can be made 4 days ahead. Cover and chill.
Recipe from Anna Stockwell; Epicurious August 2015
FRESH SWEET CORN SALSA
4 ears corn, 4 tomatoes medium sized; seeded and diced, 1 medium onion; diced, 3 jalapenos, seeded and diced fine, 1 lime juiced, ½ tsp. garlic powder (or 1 fresh clove), 2 tsp. salt, ¼ cup cilantro
Corn may be used raw or cooked. Cut from cob and place in mixing bowl. Dice the tomato, onion and jalapenos. Mix with the corn and add in lime juice, salt, and garlic. Chop cilantro and mix in. Can be served fresh or refrigerate until ready to serve; 15 servings.
CORN AND TOMATO SOUP
2 cups cooked whole kernel corn; 2 medium tomatoes, chopped; 4 large stalks celery, chopped; 1 quart cold water; 2 tablespoons softened butter; 3 tablespoons unbleached flour; 1 cup milk; ½ cup grated Monterey Jack cheese; 1/2 cup chopped pimento; 2 tablespoons minced fresh oregano; Salt and freshly ground pepper
In a large soup pot, cover the corn, tomatoes, and celery with the cold water. Simmer, covered, for 30 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. In a small saucepan, melt the butter and blend in the flour, making a roux. Gradually add the milk and cook until thickened, stirring frequently. Add the milk mixture to the soup pot and stir well. Add the cheese, pimento, and oregano and stir until the cheese is melted. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve in heated bowls. 2 quarts;
Recipe from Herbal Soups, Salads, Breads and Sweets
PRIZEWINNER GREEN BEANS WITH TOMATOES AND GARLIC
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil; 1pound green beans, ends clipped, beans cut in half; 1 clove garlic, minced; 1 sprig rosemary, leaves torn off the stem; about 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes; 2 medium tomatoes, cut into wedges; 1/2 cup sliced onions (peeling is optional); 2 teaspoons dried oregano; salt to taste or 2 tablespoons salted butter; 1/2 teaspoon dried ground thyme
Heat olive oil in deep pan over medium heat. Add garlic and pepper flakes; sauté until fragrant. Add onions; sauté until translucent, 3-5 minutes. Add 1/4 cup water, the dried spices, and green beans. Stir, cover, and steam-cook beans until nearly done, 10-15 minutes. Stir in the rosemary and tomatoes. Cook very briefly, until tomatoes are warmed through and beans are done. Season with salt, or, if you prefer, melt salted butter over the beans before serving. This recipe won a prize in the 2002 Food for Thought Recipe Contest in Madison, Wisconsin. Makes 4 servings
Recipe from Mora Rosenbloom
2 medium zucchini; 2 medium yellow crookneck squash; 2 tablespoons olive oil; 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage; I tablespoon minced garlic; salt and pepper
Heat oven to 350 degrees Cut squash and zucchini into I-inch dice, toss with other ingredients, and roast until tender, 15-20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste Makes 4 servings; Recipe from MACSAC
CHICKEN WITH ZUCCHINI AND TOMATOES
2 boneless chicken breasts cut up; 2 small zucchini cut into chunks; 1 11 b. can of tomatoes, or use fresh if available; 1 clove garlic; 1 teaspoon parsley; salt and pepper to taste; 6 small red potatoes, cut into halves; 1 onion, chopped
Steam chicken until done. Add rest of ingredients, bring to boil, turn down to simmer and cook in a covered saucepan until potatoes and zucchini are done.
CINNAMON ZUCCHINI CAKE
2 1/2 cups flour; 2 cups sugar; 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon; 1 tsp salt; 1/2 tsp baking powder; 1/2 tsp baking soda; 1 cup vegetable oil; 4 eggs; 2 cups shredded zucchini; 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Frosting: 4 ounces (1/2 package) cream cheese, softened; 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) butter, softened; 1 tbsp milk; 1 tsp vanilla extract; 2 cups powdered sugar
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Mix flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a bowl. Mix oil and eggs in another bowl until smooth; add to dry ingredients and mix well. Add zucchini; stir until thoroughly combined. Fold in walnuts, if desired. Spread mixture in prepared pan; bake until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean, 35-45 minutes. Cool thoroughly. To make frosting, beat cream cheese, butter, milk, and vanilla until smooth. Add powdered sugar and mix well. Frost cake; makes 12 or more servings.
Recipe from Lisa Kivirist, Inn Serendipity
CREAMED KALE AND ONIONS (Smaller size)
3/4 lb. kale, cleaned; 1 lbs. small white onions, peeled (about 12); 2 T butter; 1.5 T flour; 3/4 c. milk; seasonings.
Cook kale in boiling salted water (enough to come halfway up on layer of the vegetable) until tender, about 15 minutes. Cook onions in boiling salted water until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain; combine vegetables. Make white sauce of butter, flour, milk and seasonings you prefer (salt, pepper, etc.). Pour over kale and onions. Serve hot. Makes 6 servings Note: You can use liquid drained from cooked vegetables for all or part of milk in making the sauce.
Recipe from America’s Best Vegetable Recipes
KALE AND POTATO TARRAGON SALAD
2 pounds small potatoes, scrubbed, 7 T. olive oil, 1 medium onion, diced, 1 bunch kale, large stems removed, leaves chopped into 1 in. pieces, 1 clove garlic, minced, 2 T. lemon juice, 1/4-1/2 t. tarragon, divided, salt and pepper to taste
Steam or boil potatoes until fork tender. Drain, cut into large bite sized pieces, place in large bowl, and cover to keep warm. Meanwhile, heat 1 T. olive oil in a wide skillet over medium heat. Add onions; sauté until translucent. Add kale and garlic; cook until kale is tender, about 5 minutes more (you can cover pan to help wilt kale). Combine vinegar, lemon juice, ¼ t. dried tarragon, remaining 6 T. olive oil, and salt and pepper. Add kale mixture to potatoes and pour dressing over everything. (It’s important to toss the dressing while the mixture is hot, to soak in the flavors.) Add more salt and pepper, or tarragon if necessary. Serve warm or at room temperature. Makes 6 servings.
Recipe from Jenny Bonde and Rick DaVee, Shooting Star Farm
BABY KALE, TOASTED PECAN AND GOAT CHEESE SALAD WITH CRANBERRY-GINGER VINAIGRETTE
1T balsamic vinegar, 1T cranberry sauce, 1T honey, 2t fresh ginger, grated, 1T orange juice, ¼ C olive oil, salt & pepper to taste, 4C baby kale, rinsed, 1/4C toasted pecans; slightly chopped, 1/4C goat cheese; crumbled
Prepare the vinaigrette: Place balsamic vinegar, cranberry sauce, honey, ginger, and orange juice in a blender or food processor and blend. Slowly drizzle in oil. Once all oil is in, blend for about ten more seconds.
To prepare salad: In medium bowl toss kale and 2/3 of the dressing. Divide kale on to four plates then sprinkle goat cheese and pecans and drizzle remaining dressing over the salad. Recipe form Brandon Veile, Juniper
GREEN BEANS WITH LEMON VINAIGRETTE
2 tsp minced fresh parsley; 2 Tbsp lemon juice; 1 Tbsp plain, unsweetened yogurt; 2 tsp chopped chives or green onion with green top; Salt and black pepper, to taste; 1/3 c canola oil; 1 lb fresh green beans, trimmed
Combine parsley, juice, yogurt, chives, salt, pepper, and oil in jar with tight-fitting lid. Shake vigorously. Chill. Blanch green beans 4 minutes; plunge in ice water to stop cooking. Drain. Toss green beans with vinaigrette. Makes 6 servings
VEGETABLE CHICKEN SALAD
2 lbs potatoes, scrubbed; 1 lb fresh green beans, washed and trimmed; 1 Tbsp olive oil; 1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch cubes; 3/4 c prepared pesto sauce
Bring pot of water to boil. Meanwhile, cut the potatoes in half length wise, then cut them crosswise in 1/2-inch slices. Add potatoes to boiling water, cover and return to boiling; cook 3 minutes. Add green beans to pot with potatoes and cook 4 minutes; vegetables should be firm. Drain and set aside. In the same pot, heat olive oil over high heat and cook the chicken, stirring, 6 minutes or until meat is cooked through. Remove from heat; stir in pesto sauce. Stir in potatoes and green beans. Makes 8 servings