- If you haven’t sent in a form and/or payment for winter shares then you do not have a winter share secured. This Thursday is the last day to secure a winter share before open enrollment begins for new members. Any remaining shares will be first come, first served. We are only offering 100 winter shares.
- There are five weeks remaining of summer shares; the last distribution is Nov. 3rd/5th.
- Summer share enrollment for 2016 will begin Nov. 1st details will be sent out in late October.
- Thank you for your response to our plea for share boxes.
- The annual potluck with educational field walk will be held Sunday Oct.18th. The pumpkins available for U-pick are limited this year due to the dry weather. Details for the potluck to follow.
Farm News from Jane
I hope that everyone had a chance to view a bit of the lunar eclipse last evening. We had clear skies out here for most of the evening but understand that over the city the cloud coverage made for limited viewing. Mother Nature sure is spectacular!!! But what is really spectacular to me this week is the progress made Saturday on the reconstruction of the high tunnel! With the help of two great workers the frame is up and in place. How exciting is to see it standing tall and awaiting the next step. The first crop to be planted inside the high tunnel will be spinach. It was seeded in the greenhouse a few weeks ago and is a beautiful dark green and growing larger each day.
The next exciting thing for me is the fact that all the fall carrot weeding is accomplished. It always looms largely as a tremendous challenge until we begin! And although the plantings are a bit thin they are growing well. We hope to have earlier seeded carrots in the summer shares in a few weeks. We also clipped the growth points from the Brussel sprouts today to give them the signal to grow mature spouts. The new variety of red Brussels sprouts which are really purple are gorgeous and it will be exciting to watch how they develop. One of our worker share members also found some small heads of Romanesco peeking out of the lush plants. A few weeks and some rain and the first planting should be ready. Romanesco is a type of cauliflower cross with beautiful green spiraled pinnacles instead of round flowerettes. It looks like a chiseled work of art. It is as delicious as it is beautiful. It’s one of my favorites. Our first early block of crucifers has not developed as well as anticipated so you may find a head of broccoli or cauliflower in you share not listed in the produce index as they become available. And this week is the first of the rutabaga. If you are unfamiliar please do try them raw first. They are great on a raw vegetable platter or could be grated on a salad raw as well. Of course there are plenty of recipes for cooking them and they are great roasted.
Our apologies for not having the Concord grapes last week as listed. Our grower was unable to get them picked for us. But he promised them for us this week.
I was almost surprised when I walked out of the house one day last week to find a light carpet of leaves on the ground. “When did that happen” I said to myself. It seems as though I’ve been lulled into thinking that summer is still here based on the warm temperatures and loads of sunshine. But as I drive down the road each day the changing color of the trees reminds me that autumn is certainly present.
Enjoy this week’s autumn offerings, Jane
Produce: Keuka Gold potatoes Spanish onions Garlic
Russian Kale Acorn squash Red beets Rutabaga Bok Choy
Fruit Share: Concord grapes (really!) Pears Cortland apples
– Acorn squash can be cut in half or rings, seeded and baked or grilled. Basting with olive oil before grilling is helpful.
– Russian kale is a bit spicier or peppery flavored than the mild Dinosaur kale.
– Rutabaga is one of the cruciferous veggies in the broccoli family. It is abundant in antioxidants and can be peeled and eaten raw with a dip. Please try it raw to enjoy its favor. Or boil land mash like potatoes or cube and roast.
ACORN SQUASH WITH HAM AND APPLES
1 acorn squash; 1/4 tsp salt; 2/3 cup diced cooked ham; 1/3 cup diced, peeled tart apples; 1 tbsp brown sugar; ¼ tsp dry mustard; pinch of pepper; 2 tsp butter
Wash and cut squash in halves lengthwise. Remove seeds. Place, cut side down, in 15~ X 10~ X 1″ jelly roll pan. Pour in 1/2″ boiling water; bake in hot oven (400°) 30 minutes. Remove from oven and turn squash halves cut side up. Sprinkle with salt. Combine ham, apples, brown sugar, mustard and pepper. Spoon into squash cavities. Top each with 1 tsp. butter. Return to oven and bake until apples are tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Makes 2 servings.
APPLE RUTABAGA SOUP
Melt 4 oz. butter; Add: l cp coarsely chopped onion; l cp peeled, cored, chopped apple; l cp peeled chopped rutabaga; l cp peeled, seeded chopped butternut squash; l cp chopped carrots; l cp peeled chopped sweet potatoes. Cook until onions are translucent, stir occasionally. Add; l qt chicken or vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and cook till vegetables are tender and cooked through. Puree in small batches. Add: l cup heavy cream; l cp milk; 1/4 cup maple syrup. Return to stove and heat through. Add salt and cayenne pepper to taste.
THE ULTIMATE ROOT SOUP, BORSCHT
1/3 cup (1 ounce) dried porcini; 2 large leeks; 3 or 4 small russet potatoes, peeled; 11/4 pounds beets, peeled; 3 celery ribs; 1 carrot; finely chopped parsley or dill; 3 bay leaves; 7 garlic cloves, chopped; sea salt and freshly ground pepper; 1 large onion; 1 rutabaga, about 1/2 pound; 2 tbsp butter; 3 cups shredded green cabbage; 1 cup fresh or canned diced tomatoes (in puree or water); 1 tbsp sugar; 3 tbsp white or red wine vinegar; 1/2 cup sour cream mixed with 1 tbsp prepared horseradish
Cover the mushrooms with 2 cups warm water and set them aside while you make a vegetable stock. Wash all the soup vegetables thoroughly since you’ll be using the trimmings. These include 4 inches of leeks past the white part of their roots, if available; potato peels; beet stems and peels; celery tips; carrot ends; and parsley stems. Put the trimmings in a pot with 2 bay leaves, 4 garlic cloves, and 2 teaspoons salt. Cover with 10 cups water and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer while you chop the vegetables for the soup. Finely chop the white parts of the leeks. Finely dice the onion. Chop the celery into 1/2-inch pieces. Dice the carrot into 1/4-inch piece. Peel the rutabaga and dice into 1/2-inch pieces. Dice the peeled potatoes. Cut the peeled beets into julienne strips. Melt the butter in a large Dutch oven. Add the leeks, onion, celery, carrot, rutabaga, potatoes, cabbage and remaining garlic. Toss with 1 tablespoon salt, cover, and cook over medium heat until the vegetables have wilted, about 20 minutes. Add the beets, tomatoes, remaining bay leaf, and sugar. Chop the soaked mushrooms and add them, along with their soaking liquid, to the pot. Strain the stock, then add it (or 2 quarts water) and simmer until the beets are tender, about 25 minutes. Taste for salt and season with pepper. Stir in the vinegar. Serve hot or cold, with a spoonful of sour cream and horseradish in each bowl and a scattering of fresh green parsley or dill. Serves 8 to 10
GARLICKY BOK CHOY
3 Tbsp peanut oil; 1 tsp salt; 1 1/2 lb. bok choy; 4 garlic cloves, chopped
Heat wok over high flame 1 minute. Add the oil and heat. When it is very hot (on verge of smoking), add salt, garlic and Bok choy. Stir-fry until bok choy is wilted, about 3 minutes. Serve as side dish. Makes 4 servings
1/4 cup vegetable oil; 3 cups thinly sliced bok choy stalks; 1/2 teaspoon salt; 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper; 2 teaspoons sugar; 2 cups chicken stock; 11/2 tablespoons cornstarch; 1/4 cup cold water; 1/4 cup soy sauce; 2 cups bean sprouts; 2 cups slivered cooked chicken, turkey, or pork; chow mein noodles; cooked rice
Heat oil in a wok or deep skillet. Add celery, salt, pepper, and sugar; stir-fry 1 minute. Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Simmer for about 8 minutes. Meanwhile, blend cornstarch, water, and soy sauce in a small bowl. Add to skillet and stir until mixture thickens. Stir in bean sprouts and meat. Cook until heate4 through, 2-3 minutes. Serve over hot rice with chow mein noodles. Makes 4 servings. Recipe from James and Kathleen Mulvey
KALE SALAD WITH APPLES & CHEDDAR
4 cups very finely chopped or slivered curly kale or Russian kale (about 6 ounces on the stem, or half of a 3/4-pound bunch, stemmed and washed in two rinses of water), 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped toasted almonds, 1 apple, sweet, like a Fuji, or a sweet-tart, like a Gala, cored and cut in 1/4-inch dice, 1 ounce sharp Cheddar cheese, cut in 1/4-inch dice, 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, Salt to taste, 1 very small garlic clove, puréed, 5 tablespoons extra Combine the kale, almonds, apple and Cheddar in a large bowl. Whisk together the lemon juice, salt, garlic and olive oil. Add to the salad, and toss well. Sprinkle the Parmesan over the top, and serve. Tip: This salad benefits from tossing with the dressing about 15 minutes before you serve it. The kale will soften in the dressing. Recipe from Martha Rose Shulman
AWESOME PEAR OR APPLE PANCAKE
3 eggs; 1/4 cup whole milk; 1/4 cup all-purpose flour 1\4 tsp salt; 1 tsp almond or pure vanilla extract; 2 ripe pears or 2 tart peeled apples, cored and thinly sliced; 2 tbsp sugar; 1/4 tsp cinnamon; 2 tbsp butter; Confectioners’ sugar or pure maple syrup to taste
Warm an iron skillet in a 425 degree F oven. With a handheld blender, whisk together the eggs, milk, flour, salt, and extract until smooth. In a separate bowl, toss together pears, sugar, and cinnamon. Melt butter in the warm skillet. Arrange the pears in a single layer on the bottom of the skillet. Carefully pour the batter over the fruit. Bake for 25 minutes or until puffed and golden brown. To serve, sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar or drizzle with maple syrup. 2-4 servings
CHICKEN THIGHS WITH PEAR & LEEK SAUCE
1 large leek, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced; 4 tsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided; 4 large boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 1-1 1/2 pounds), trimmed; 3/4 tsp salt, divided; 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper, divided; 1 large firm ripe pear, peeled and diced; 3/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided; 2 tsp cornstarch; 2 tbsp currant jelly; 1 ¼ cup chopped walnuts, toasted
Place sliced leek in a colander; rinse and drain well. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Season chicken with 1f4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook until golden brown and no longer pink in the center, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and tent with foil to keep warm. Reduce heat to medium and add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the pan. Add the leek and cook, stirring, until beginning to brown and soften, about 2 minutes. Add pear and 1f4 cup broth; simmer until the pear is soft and the broth is evaporated, about 2 minutes. Meanwhile, whisk the remaining 1f2 cup broth and cornstarch in a small bowl. Add currant jelly tithe pan and cook, stirring, until melted. Stir in the cornstarch mixture, the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Bring to a boil, stirring, and cook until thickened, about 1 minute. Return the chicken and any accumulated juices to the pan and turn to coat with sauce. Serve sprinkled with walnuts. Makes 4 servings
SMASHED YUKON GOLD POTATOES WITH BLUE CHEESE AND TOASTED NUTS
2 pounds young Yukon Gold potatoes (unpeeled); 4 tablespoons butter, softened; 1/2 cup milk or cream; salt and pepper; 1/2 pound blue cheese, crumbled; 1/4 pound (about 1 cup) nuts
Cook potatoes and place in large bowl. Add butter, milk, and a pinch of salt and pepper (or to taste). Smash with fork, leaving some large pieces. Lightly toss in blue cheese. Sprinkle with nuts. Makes 6 servings.
SPICY POTATO, SAUSAGE AND GREENS SOUP
1 pound bulk hot Italian sausage; 1/2 cup chopped onion, or more to taste; 4 cups chicken broth; 4 cups thinly sliced potatoes (slice them with skins on); 4 cups water; 2 packed cups tom or chopped fresh greens; 1/3 cup whipping cream; salt and pepper
Heat soup pot over medium flame. Add sausage and onions and cook until meat is no longer pink. Add broth, potatoes, and 4 cups water. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer until potatoes are tender, 10-15 minutes. Stir in greens; cook 1-2 minutes. Stir in whipping cream and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve right away, or, for more developed flavor, let cool, then chill and reheat later or the next day. This recipe was inspired by a soup at Olive Garden restaurant. Add some buttered biscuits and it’s a perfect winter meal. Makes 8-12 servings; Recipe from JoAnn Hoffman, Vermont Valley Farm member
ARABIAN SQUASH CHEESE CASSEROLE
2 medium-large Acorn or carnival squash; 1 cup onion; 2-3 cloves crushed garlic; 1 cup red or green pepper, chopped; 3 Tbsp butter; 1 tsp salt; 2 beaten eggs; 1 cup buttermilk or yogurt; lf4 cup sunflower seeds; 1 cup crumbled feta
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Cook squash for 35 minutes or until soft. Scoop out and mash squash. Sauté onion and garlic in butter and salt, when the onion is translucent add the chopped peppers. Sauté until just done. Beat eggs with buttermilk. Crumble in the feta cheese. Combine everything and mix well. Add salt and pepper to taste. Spread in butter casserole or baking pan. Top with sunflower seeds. Bake at 375 for 25 minutes covered and then 10 minutes uncovered.
CHILI ROASTED RUTABAGA
2T vegetable oil, 1½t chili powder, 1t onion powder, 1t garlic salt, 1/2t sugar, 1/2t paprika, ½ t cayenne,
1 ½ pounds rutabaga
Heat oven to 4000. Mix first 7 ingredients in a medium bowl. Peel rutabagas and cut them into chunks that are about 2inches long and ½-1 inch wide. Toss with spice mix. Transfer to large baking sheet, spreading pieces out evenly. Bake until tender and somewhat browned, stirring occasionally, about 25 minutes. Makes 4-6 servings.