Week Fifteen News

Hello everyone out there. We hope this week’s post finds everyone feeling healthy and happen, perhaps a bit more settled into the cooler weather. Just when we think that things have slowed down a bit for one week we are right back to main season busy at the farm. We are still in the middle of summer harvests, with tomatoes, squash, hearty greens, peppers and cucumbers going strong. We are also very excited that salad mix is ready again with head lettuce not far behind. It is a nice change to have a light lettuce salad with a vinagarette and some thinly sliced radishes. Though much of the farm’s staff is powered largely through cucumbers and kale, we were all really looking forward to the first fall salad harvest. Aside from some new harvests, the winter squash is starting to take on mature colors and patterns, some of it is beginning to firm up as well. Most of the fields are already planted with late fall and winter crops, but we are still seeding every week for hoop house production. For much of the summer, the routine is the same for us – harvest, seed and plant. This cycle continues most of the year, as we are harvesting almost every week of the year. However, it is always interesting to see what new things are harvested each week or month and it never really gets old to anticipate what is to come with the changing seasons. With the days getting shorter as we approach the autumn equinox, the trick for the next while is to fit it all in during daylight. We have an extensive collection of headlamps.

For this week, you find in your boxes kale, salad mix, tomatoes, jalapeno peppers, bell peppers, cucumbers, beets, radishes, squash and broccoli or cauliflower. Aside from jalapeños, all of these vegetables have made a few appearances in the shares. There are many recipes dealing with the vegetables in previous posts and in the recipe section on the homepage. A note on the jalapeños: taste a small piece before using in a recipe. Despite their size, some of them we have tested proved to be incredibly hot, while others were quite mild. They are great in this farmer version of pick de gallo that follows. (Farmer version usually means the addition of more vegetables not in traditional recipes.)

Farmer Pico de Gallo

1 cup chopped tomatoes, juice and seeds squeezed out
1 cup chopped peeled cucumbers
1 bell pepper, chopped small
1/2 cup diced yellow or white onion
1-2 jalapeños, finely minced
1/2 cup cilantro, leaves removed from stems
Juice of 1-2 limes, depending on tastes
Salt and pepper to taste

Wash, prep and chop all vegetables. Place in mixing bowl keeping jalapeños out. Taste for specimens of the peppers and add to your liking. Add cilantro, lime juice and salt and pepper to your tastes as well. Eat with tortilla chips, on tacos, grilled meats or squash, or top a salad. Refrigerating an hour or so before use will meld flavors together. The salsa will keep about five days covered in the fridge.

Favorite Salad Dressing

This dressing for sure has been in prior posts, but with the advent of salad season again it seemed worthwhile to post it again. This is also a good marinade for meats, tempeh or tofu or vegetables.

1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbs. balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbs. honey
Salt and pepper to taste.

Place all ingredients minus salt and pepper in blender. Blend on high till well combined, season with salt and pepper. Store in a sealed container up to a week. To dress this up, add a half cup of fresh berries for a berry vinegarette add two tablespoons fruit preserves instead of the honey. The berry versions pair well with roasted beets and goat cheese.
We hope you are all taking care and eating your greens. Thanks as always for all of your support. If you are loving your summer vegetables, check back often for more details about winter vegetables. Eating seasonally and locally does not have to stop once the weather turns cold and days are darker. There is an amazing array of delicious winter produce in store this year.