Week Thirteen Farm Share

Back to school and fall is starting already? It seems that way given the weather as of late, but once again we are finding ourselves in the midst of major summer harvests. September is usually our biggest month of harvest, and the photo above shows our fields in full production when they were planted just over a month ago. There was a similar photo posted a while back and what started out as tiny plants in rows has now become giant squash and cucumber plants full of fruit. For us at the farm, summer goes on for quite a while despite what other schedules might be telling us.

On that note, back to school means back to more routines, which is a great time to add even more healthy vegetables to your life. Lunches provide an opportunity to eat sliced cucumbers, peppers and broccoli or a hearty kale salad. Pack a small container of hummus and you have a light lunch or a filling snack. Cherry tomatoes are a great snack too. All of these items plus potatoes, beets, heirloom tomatoes, kale and summer squash will be in the shares this week. The peppers this week taste just like green bell peppers, and the purple color fades to green when cooked. They are best used fresh in salads and snacks.
Cucumbers have been showing up in the shares for quite some time and we have not really discussed them that much, as most uses are pretty straightforward. But, given the amount in shares coming up it seemed like a good idea to throw in some cucumber recipes. Try slicing in thick rounds and coring them with a circular cookie cutter. You should have a cucumber tube at the end ready to stuff with anything from guacamole to tuna salad. To make cucumber tube sushi, peel the cucumbers first, then core and stuff, then roll the outside in strips of nori. The wetness of the cucumber will hold the nori sheets on. These are a good lunch or light dinner, and way faster than making rice. Or, try this simple salad. It makes a good side or relish for grilled chicken or fish.

2 cups chopped cucumbers
1 cup grapes, cut in half if large (fresh melon works equally well here)
1/4 cup chopped red onion
2 tbs. fresh mint, chopped very small
2 tsp. red wine vinegar
1 tbs. olive oil
1 seeded and diced jalapeño, minced
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut all vegetables and place in mixing bowl. Add vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper and jalapeño. Be sure to try a piece of the jalapeño before adding to know how hot it is. Depending on its spiciest level, add more or less as desired. Mix all ingredients well and serve chilled.

Both table grapes and melons are in season and available at local farmer’s markets. Many vendors have melon tastings right now and it is a great opportunity to see the variance in local fruit production beyond watermelon and cantaloupe. Grapes come in many different varieties as well and will be available for the next month.

As always, thank you again for your support and we hope you enjoy a good w