What’s in the Box 9/20/16

CSA Week #17 – September 20-23
If you’re wondering where all the fall greens are…(think kale & collards)…I’ve been wondering the same thing!  Farmer Matt sent me the picture below this afternoon showing us the status from the fields.  Way back in the summer when we were in the middle of a massive drought, we weren’t able to get into the fields to transplant.  Why, you ask?  Usually it’s too much rain that keeps us out of the fields and delays the plantings.  Well, dry weather can do the same thing.  When the fields are too dry, tractor work will create massive dust clouds.  That’s not a good thing for the farmers or for the fields.  So we have to carefully schedule our transplanting dates for when we get some rain, or for when we’re able to irrigate the fields first.  This summer we were so busy irrigating to keep the plants in the ground alive that we didn’t have extra time (or hands on deck) to get the fields irrigated on time.  That’s what caused the delay in planting and the delay we’re experiencing now.  In the end, this is not particularly bad news… the fall greens are coming and they’re looking beautiful, but it’s going to be another few weeks before they appear in the shares. I thought you’d like to know…

On a happier note, we wanted to bring your attention to our beautiful onions this year!  If you’ve been a member in the past, you’ll know that we don’t usually include so many beautiful high-quality onions in the shares.  Onions are hard to grow because they are small plants that are very difficult to keep weed-free.  This year they are exceptional.  I don’t know about you, but I use onions in practically every recipe and I love not having to run out to the store to supplement this year!

SAVE THE DATE!  Our annual CSA Harvest Festival will take place at the farm in Riverhead on Sunday, October 16th from 11am-3pm.  It’s open to all CSA members and their guests!  Farm tours, Q&A with your farmers, cooking demonstrations, kids activities, live music.  It’s a really lovely day of farm fun and an opportunity for you to see where we grow your food and connect with other members. Stay tuned for more details coming soon…

YOUR REPLACEMENT Red Leaf Lettuce This Red Leaf Lettuce is your replacement for the less than perfect Romaine that we sent out last week.  Our apologies again for the leaf tip burn.  These should be beautiful inside and out!Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw  When to use: Within 5 days. 

Romaine Lettuce This Romaine Lettuce looks perfect, so you should have no quality issues…
Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw  When to use: Within 5 days. 

Saladette/Cocktail Tomatoes/Cherry Tomatoes
Storage: On the counter until they are a deep red/yell0w/orange.  At that point, eat them right away or if you must, put them in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw/Cooked  When to use: Right away when deep colors.

Red Beefsteak Tomatoes
Storage: On the counter until they are a deep red.  At that point, eat them right away or if you must, put them in the refrigerator. Uses:Raw/Cooked  When to use: Right away when deep colors.

Acorn Squash –  I like to cut in half lengthwise and then scoop out the seeds.  You can either put these halves in a steamer and cook until the flesh is tender, or rub with olive oil and set the halves face down in a baking dish.  Sometimes I pour a few tablespoons of water around them and bake in the oven at 350F until soft.  Scoop out the flesh and season with salt and a little butter (or olive oil) and enjoy!
Storage: Winter squash should be stored at room temperature – and dry. Keep in paper bags or baskets out of direct sunlight and they will up to a month. Uses: Cooked  When to use: Within a month

Festival Sweet Dumpling Squash – Eat these right away!  They are not good storage squash.  These unusual looking squash have a rich (& sweet!) flavor.  Cook like acorn squash – see above.
Storage: Winter squash should be stored at room temperature – and dry. Uses: Cooked  When to use: Within a week.

Zucchini/Summer Squash – These plants are almost finished, but we do have 1 piece per member this week.  I wanted to address an issue that was raised in our survey by some members who were not happy about receiving just one of something…  I know it’s not always easy to come up with a recipe for one zucchini, for example, but one is better than none, right?  Try to think of it as a great addition to a recipe instead of the star.  You can throw in a zucchini to most soup and stir-fry recipes, or mix it with shredded potatoes in zucchini & potato pancakes – see below.  When a crop is just starting to produce, or just winding down, you’ll likely find just one in your shares.  I hope our decision to include it in the shares instead of letting it rot in the fields is one that you would agree with!
Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Raw or Cooked, Baked When to use: Within 5 days. 

Red and Yellow Onions –  Great in all your recipes…
Storage: In a cool, dry, well-ventilated place. Uses: Cooked or Raw  When to use: Within a month

Swiss Chard To please all the greens-loving members…. See pic above to prove that other greens are coming!
Storage: In an airtight (plastic) bag in the refrigerator. Uses: Cooked  When to use: Within 5 days. 

FRUIT SHARE – 1 bag mixed Gala Apples & Peaches

Recipes

Zucchini & Potato Pancakes 1/2 this recipe to use up your 1 zucchini this week!
Swiss Chard with Garlic & Lemon – A CSA-member favorite!
Swiss Chard, Feta & Mozzarella Bake – Another CSA-member approved recipe!

Bon appetit! xoMaggie

At the Farmers’ Market

As a separate program from our CSA, we grow produce for 3 farmers’ markets on Long Island.  Our CSA members are often our best customers at the market, so please stop by and say “hello”!

Islip – Saturdays 7am-12am
Port Washington – Saturdays 8am-12pm
Huntington – Sundays 7am-12pm

Click here for maps & directions to the markets.