Week Eighteen Farm News

Waking up to rain on my day off was a welcome change this morning. Usually this time of year we have had at least a bit of rain, but apparently it is not out of the ordinary to have days over eighty degrees. However, this seems to be working out for the farm as evidenced in our harvests as of late. We are having somewhat of a cucumber explosion last week and this week, hopefully you all are able to get creative. Their season is relatively short and out of season cucumbers just don’t taste the same, not to mention their heavy structure and fossil fuel use to import them come winter time…so enjoy them these next few weeks!

In addition to a large cucumber selection in the shares this week, you will find squash, tomatoes, radishes, head lettuce, kale, collards, padron peppers, poblanos, bell peppers and Japanese turnips. These are the small white roots in a bunch. They were present in the early season shares and thrive in cooler temperatures. They are best eaten raw, similar to a radish. Their texture is smooth and almost creamy, with a mild flavor. They are great with dips for a snack or thinly sliced in salads. They are good roasted and sauteed as well. Try adding thinly sliced collards to fall soup recipes calling for spinach. They are really good in a minestrone soup or sub them for kale in a white bean and kale soup. Collard ribbons can be added to pasta as it is almost done cooking. Remove center stems and roll up, then cut very thin. Add the collard “noodles” to spaghetti noodles that are just about done and strain and add sauce or continue your recipe as directed. This adds a nutrient and color punch to any dish you might be preparing.

Now, back to cucumbers. Aside from fresh eating, adding them to salsas, running them through the juicer, making cucumber sushi, making pickles, what are some other fun cucumber recipes? If any of you have some please let us know! At the farm, not that we don’t all love eating a ton of cucumbers each day, we like to hide them in smoothies. We get pretty good at hiding vegetables in smoothies. Try this easy recipe for breakfast or a quick lunch on the go.

Cucumber Berry Smoothie

One large cucumber, peel intact
Four kale or collard leaves
One cup frozen berries
One frozen banana
One cup coconut water or orange juice
A few dates or honey to sweeten if desired
One cup ice

Cut all vegetables into smallish chunks for easier blending and place in high powered blender. Add berries, banana, ice and enough liquid to cover the bottom third of blender. Usually this is about a cup. Blend on high till smooth and creamy and drink right away. This recipe makes two servings.