- We are hosting a pick your own strawberry event for members only Saturday June 27 from 9-12 noon sharp; please do not come early. Bring your own containers but please do not bring any pets. Park in the grassy area to the left of the barn @ 2112 County Line Rd. Alden. Our sign reads Oles Family Farm/Promised Land CSA. Please come to the barn for directions. There is no cost for the berries but picking is limited due to the recent rainy weather.
- We will also have our Oles Family meats available at the strawberry event. This includes pork chops, Canadian bacon, Italian sausage, Polish sausage, breakfast sausage, spareribs, and fresh or frozen whole chickens.
- All checks to be made out to: Oles Family Farm.
- We find ourselves in need of a few more worker share so we are offering a Saturday 8-12 shift beginning July 11th. It will run for 17 weeks and we will rebate your summer produce share cost for hours worked. We need a minimum of four members. Please contact us if interested.
- Remember to bring your new share box to distribution and if you have any difficulty unfolding it just wait until we can demonstrate it for you.
- The tree fruit share will begin in the next few weeks with sweet cherries.
Farm News from Jane
Welcome to summer! The summer solstice occurred Sunday and although summer just began we will actually begin to decrease the hours of daylight within the next week or so. But we also experience a longer “twilight” time at sunset and sunrise. Who doesn’t enjoy these warm balmy evenings? To me they are the “frosting on the cake” even at the end of a long day. So eat lots of fresh, raw veggies that require little preparation outside on the veranda or even throw a bit of meat on the grill as a side. Everything tastes better with the ambiance of a lovely outdoor meal.
We hope that everyone enjoyed the strawberries last week. This week because of the volume of rain we experienced in such a short time we lost quite of few of the next variety of berries. So instead of spending many hours picking for share we will have a pick your own strawberry event on Saturday. Although we have continued to grow strawberries for the CSA it is such a perishable fruit that it is not well suited for a CSA operation. Strawberries need to be picked daily so as not to lose them to over maturity. And this year really brought this fact into the forefront. So if you are hungry for strawberries and feel adventurous come on out on Saturday to pick a few. The volume of berries is not great so please limit your picking to 4-8 qts per produce share so that there are enough for all to enjoy! And also, try some of our delicious pastured meat products. If you have been waiting for a meat share offering we will have our meats available without having to buy predetermined amounts.
Last week I neglected to inform you of the different peas that may be in your share regardless of the variety we are picking. There are always a few shelling pea seeds that come mixed in with the sugar snap seed. So when you are “stringing” them and you find that “one of these things is not like the others; one of these things just doesn’t belong” it probably doesn’t! You will have difficulty chewing the very fibrous shelling pea pod. It is “square” in shape as compared with the crescent shaped sugar snap variety. We try and cull them out in the field (into Jane’s extra basket which goes home for shelling and adding to salads)!
Well that’s about all for this beautiful first week of summer week; please feel welcome to come out to the farm just to take a walk and see where your vegetables are growing. There are even pigs and new Rhode Island Red laying hens to enjoy.
See you on Saturday, Jane & family
Produce: Green onions Garlic scapes Sugar Snap Peas Fennel bulb
Swiss chard Chioggia beets Romaine lettuce
– Fennel is great shaved into a salad or roasting on the grill. It has a mild licorice flavor after cooking. The fronds are a delightful addition to a salad also. If you are preparing a roast it works well on top of the meat. It is related to carrots, celery and parsley and is high in Vitamin A, and calcium, potassium and iron.
– Swiss chard: My apologies for not including any recipes for chard week three, especially for those who are new to it. Swiss chard is generally sautéed, stir fried or steamed. It is a great addition to soups for “body” also. Remove the stalk first before chopping or slicing. Cook the stalks for a few minutes first before adding the more delicate leaves. It is also high in calcium and iron. Minerals are more readily absorbed from chard than they are from spinach. It also contains no oxalic acid which is an element present in spinach and tends to bind minerals and render them unavailable during digestion.
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 julienned or finely chopped. Sprinkle with 2 tsp of sugar. Mix together 1/4 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. 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 if you’re watching your fat intake.
SUGAR SNAP PEAS WITH MUSHROOMS
2 tablespoon oil; 6 mushrooms, sliced; ¼ pound fresh sugar snap peas, cut into half crosswise; 2 teaspoons soy sauce; 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seed
Heat oil in wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and stir fry until lightly browned. Reduce heat to medium, cover and simmer 3 minutes. Increase heat, add peas and stir-fry until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Stir in soy sauce. Cover and cook 1 minute longer. Sprinkle with sesame seed and serve. 4 servings
SUGAR SNAP PEAS AND RED GRAPES
3/4 lb. sugar snap peas, strings and stems removed; 1 tbsp. unsalted butter; 1 shallot, finely chopped; 1/4 tsp. salt; freshly ground black pepper; l-2 cup seedless red grapes, halved lengthwise; 1 tbsp. dry white wine
Blanch the peas in boiling water for two minutes. Drain the peas, and then refresh them under cold running water until cool. Drain them again and set them aside. Heat the butter in a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat. Cook the shallot until soft – about two minutes. Add the peas, salt and pepper, and cook until the peas are heated through – two to three minutes. Add the grapes and wine, and cook until the wine has evaporated – about one minute. Serve immediately.
*Snow peas work equally well in this recipe. Blanch them for 30 seconds only. Serves 4
GREEN PEAS LORRAINE
3 tbsp butter; 1/3 cup water; 2 cups sugar snap peas; 2 tbsp finely chopped onion; 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh
Parsley; 1 tsp sugar; 1/2 tsp salt; 1/8 tsp pepper; 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg (optional); 4 to 6 outside lettuce leaves, finely shredded; ½ cup light cream
Heat butter, water and peas together. Add onion, parsley, sugar and seasonings. Cover and simmer until peas are almost tender. Stir in lettuce. Continue cooking 5 minutes longer. Blend in cream. Heat and serve. Makes 5 to 6 servings.
TANGERINE AND FENNEL SALAD WITH MIXED GREENS
6-7 small tangerines; 2 tablespoons minced fresh fennel “leaves” (the feathery part of the plant); 1/4 cup olive oil; 1/4 cup dry sherry or flat champagne; salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste; 1/2 cup thinly sliced fennel bulb; 4-5 cups mixed salad greens
Cut 1 of the tangerines in half and squeeze the juice into a medium bowl. Mix in olive oil, sherry, both kinds of fennel, salt, and pepper. Peel remaining tangerines; divide into segments. Pierce each segment with a sharp fork a couple of times (to absorb dressing). Add tangerines to dressing; toss well. Chill thoroughly. Divide greens onto 4 salad plates. Arrange tangerine mixture over greens, drizzling some dressing directly onto greens. Sprinkle with additional salt and pepper. Makes 4 servings. Tangerines can be substituted for any citrus fruit for a different flavor. Recipe from MACSAC
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
3/4 c olive oil; 1/4 c red wine vinegar; 2 tsp anchovy paste; 2 garlic scapes or green onions, minced;
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice; 2 tsp Dijon mustard; 1 tsp ground white pepper; 1 c grated Parmesan cheese; 1 large head romaine lettuce; Croutons
Put oil, vinegar, anchovy paste, garlic, lemon juice, mustard and white pepper in food processor; blend. Add Parmesan; pulse just to blend. Rinse, pat dry and tear lettuce into bite-size pieces. Add half the dressing to lettuce; toss. Add more dressing, to taste; toss, then add croutons. Serve at once. Makes 4 servings
FRESH FENNEL BULB SALAD
One large or 2 small fennel bulbs; 2 tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate, partially thawed; 2 tablespoons white wine or red wine vinegar; 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard; 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil; salt and pepper
Remove fronds from the fennel bulb(s). Cut away the root and slice fennel into very thin pieces (it can also be grated). Make dressing by combining vinegar, mustard, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and orange juice concentrate in a bowl. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Pour over fennel and allow to marinate at room temperature 20 minutes or longer. Season to taste with pepper and additional salt. Recipe from Jenny Bonde and Rink DoVee, Shooting Star Farm
FENNEL EGG SALAD
6 large eggs (not too fresh! they will be difficult to peel if very fresh); 1/3 cup finely chopped fennel stalk; 2-3 tablespoons chopped fennel leaves; 2-4 tablespoons finely chopped sweet red onion; 4 tablespoons mayonnaise; 1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar; 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard; salt and pepper to taste
Place eggs in saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to boil. Turn off heat. Cover pan tightly and set timer for 9 minutes. –.-/ When timer goes off, drain eggs and immerse them in ice water 10-15 minutes. Peel and quarter eggs; place in food processor and, using the pulse button, pulse until finely chopped, 8-12 times. Add remaining ingredients; pulse until ingredients are well blended, 3-6 more times. Use as a sandwich filling, a spread for crackers, a cold sauce for chilled asparagus, or a garnish for tossed green salads. Makes 2 cups. Recipe from MACSAC
PASTA WITH FENNEL
1 bulb fennel, trimmed & quartered; 1/2 lb fettuccini; 1 Tbsp olive oil; Grated Parmesan cheese; Parsley (garnish)
Simmer fennel in 4 quarts salted water until tender, about 15 minutes. Lift fennel from water and slice. Keep warm. In the fennel water, cook the fettuccini until al dente. Drain pasta. Add olive oil and fennel. Serve with sprinkle of Parmesan and parsley. Make 3 servings
1 large fennel bulb, including the greens; 1 tbsp unsalted butter; 1/2 tbsp olive oil; sea salt and freshly ground pepper; grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon; 1/2 garlic clove, minced; 1/4 to 1/2 pound fettuccine; Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Peel or discard, if badly bruised, the tough outer layers of the fennel, then quarter the bulbs, setting aside the greens, and slice thinly. (The core will cook to tenderness.) Heat a large pot of water for the pasta. Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter with the olive oil in a wide skillet. Add the fennel and sauté over high heat, stirring occasionally, until browned in places, 7 to 10 minutes. Season with 1 teaspoon salt. Toss with the lemon juice, and then add 1 cup water. Reduce the heat and cook, covered, until the liquid has evaporated. Add another 1/2 cup water and continue cooking in this fashion until the fennel is very soft and deep gold in color, about 25 minutes in all. Season with pepper. Chop a handful of fennel greens-enough to make about Y3 cup-with the garlic and lemon zest and set aside. Add salt and the pasta to the boiling water and cook until the pasta is al dente. Scoop it out and add it to the pan with the fennel and the chopped greens. Taste for salt and season with pepper. Serve with the cheese, finely grated or thinly shaved over the top. Serves 4 to 6
ROASTED BEET SALAD
6-8 small beets, scrubbed, tops trimmed to 1 inch; 4 tbsp white wine vinegar; olive oil; 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil; salt and pepper to taste; 4 cups baby salad greens; 1/4 cup pecans; 1/2 small sweet onion, thinly sliced; 1 tbsp Dijon mustard; 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
Heat outdoor or indoor grill. Place beets on heavy foil; drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Wrap tightly; grill until beets can be easily pierced with a fork, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, toast pecans in a dry pan on the grill, tossing frequently. Finely chop the nuts. When beets are cooled a bit, use a paper towel to remove the peel, stems, and tails. Cut beets into quarters. Combine mustard and vinegar in a bowl. Whisk in olive oil until thickened. Add salt and pepper. Toss salad greens in a bowl with a little dressing. Portion the greens onto 2-4 plates. Top with beets, onions, blue cheese, and pecans. Drizzle with as much more dressing as you like. Serves 2-4;
Recipe from Jenny Bonde and Rink DaVee, Shooting Star Farm
BEET AND SHAVED FENNEL SALAD
SALAD: 4 large or 6 small beets; 1 bulb fennel; cracked black pepper to taste
DRESSING: 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil; Grated zest of 1 Clementine; Juice of 3 Clementines; 4 teaspoons rice wine vinegar; 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary, plus 4 teaspoons rosemary leaves for garnish; 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
FOR THE SALAD: Rinse the beets; put them in a pan with water to cover, and boil covered until they can be stabbed somewhat easily with a fork. Drain them and cool under cold running water. As the water is running, you can rub off the peels and stems of the beets. This will dye your hands red, but it is quick and easy. Slice the beets very thin and refrigerate them. Trim any discolored outer parts from the fennel. Trim the tops and the base. Using a mandolin, shave the fennel crosswise in almost paper thin slices. If you don’t have a mandolin cut the fennel lengthwise in half, lay the halves down on their flat sides, and slice crosswise as thin as possible. Soak the fennel in ice water while you prepare the dressing.
FOR THE DRESSING: Whisk together all the ingredients.
To FINISH THE DISH: On 4 salad plates, arrange the beet slices so they are covering the bottom of the plates. Shake the water off a tuft of fennel and place it on top of the beets. Sprinkle about 4 teaspoon fresh rosemary needles on top of each salad. Pour the dressing over the chilled salads. Crack the pepper over each plate at the table.
Serves 4; Recipe from The Café Pongo Cookbook
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 NOODLE BAKE
1 pound fresh Swiss chard, cooked just until wilted, drained and chopped; 1/2 pound penne or ziti noodles, freshly cooked and drained; 1/2 pound ricotta cheese; 1 15-ounce jars marinara sauce; 2 eggs, lightly beaten; 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese; 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley; 1 tsp salt; 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously butter 3-quart casserole or baking dish. Combine all ingredients in large mixing bowl and blend thoroughly. Turn into prepared dish and bake until top is golden brown and sauce is bubbly, 25 to 30 minutes. 4 servings
SWISS CHARD PIZZA
First chop the chard leaves and stems separately. Then microwave them separately as the stems will take a bit longer. Knead dough into pan. Massage oil onto dough. Spread on the chopped chard leaves then cover with chopped onion, 4 garlic cloves, oregano, chopped stems and grated parmesan cheese. Cover with another layer of dough which you have rolled out to approximate size. Vent the cover with holes to allow extra moisture to escape. Bake for 25 minutes at 325.
1 bunch Swiss chard, cleaned; 1 tablespoon peanut oil; 1 tablespoon minced garlic scapes; 1 tablespoon soy sauce; freshly ground black pepper
Cut off and discard thick stem ends of chard. Cut out ribs; chop ribs into 2-inch pieces; set aside in a pile. Stack the leaves in small piles; coarsely chop them. Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high flame. Add ribs; toss and cook 1 1/2 minutes. Add leaves and garlic; continue to cook, tossing often, until chard begins to wilt, 2-3 minutes. Stir in soy sauce; cook until chard is tender, 1-3 minutes longer. Add pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
Makes 2-4 servings. Recipe from MACSAC