Monday, September 2, 2013

CSA Newsletter - Week #11 (2013)

*No lettuce this week!  Those extremely hot days caused the lettuce to bolt (go to seed) which makes it taste very bitter.  Hopefully the new planting will be ready for next week!

Hello members and happy Labour Day!
I hope this newsletter finds you well rested.  I had a chance to work in the field Friday and found that the tomatoes have plenty of fruit, most of which is still green.  We'll have an abundance to give you all at once when they ripen, I predict, enabling you to make sauces and even freeze some for winter.  We're staying on top of weeding the carrots so we'll also have plenty of those for you this fall.  You'll receive storage carrots for the winter and instructions on how to keep them crisp.  It's too bad we had to wait until fall for the crop but the wet spring washed out our summer planting.

The onions never got very big this year, like they have in previous years, so you'll be getting quite a few small ones during the remainder of the CSA.  We tried a few new things this year that didn't work out as well as we had hoped.  We took tons of old straw from the barn and put it in the pathways between beds in hopes of suppressing the weeds.  Nature fought us and won, as the weeds worked their way in between the straw and black plastic mulch, taking over the garden once again.  We've decided not to try that again next year!

Here's the field in May, weed-free!  It's a jungle now and Jonny's too embarrassed to take a picture.
On a positive note, the sweet potatoes look great; we'll be digging those up in the next couple of weeks!  Next week, we'll finally have yellow beans!  The winter squash is almost ready, we're just waiting for the insides to turn a nice bright orange which indicated that the fruit is ripe and sweet.  Turnips, arugula, lettuce mix and spinach should all be ready at the end of September.  The last few shares are going to be full!  Get ready to process your autumn harvest!  
This week, your share will include:
  • tomatoes * tomates
  • beets * betteraves
  • 'Gold Rush' potatoes * patates 'Gold Rush'
  • onion * oignons
  • zucchinis * courgettes
  • garlic * ail
  • eggplant * aubergine
  • thyme * thym
  • cucumber * concombre
Tomatoes are delicious raw in salads and sandwiches or cooked into pasta dishes, quiches, omelets, crepes; you name it!  Try this Moroccan Tomato Soup and replace the canned tomatoes with your fresh ones!  Beets and beet greens are both healthy and delicious.  Sauté your greens with olive oil/butter and garlic and stuff into omelets or crepes with goat cheese, sautéed zucchini, mushrooms, sweet pepper and anything else you have in the fridge.

I topped our crepes with béchamel sauce.
Your new potatoes don't need to be peeled - simply wash off any dirt and cook them as desired.  I like to toss mine in rosemary and lemon juice before roasting or  making a sauce out of ketchup, hot sauce and BBQ sauce to have with eggs and bacon.  Onions, garlic and thyme will make every dish taste wonderful!  Use your thyme fresh in soups and stews (the rule is to add dry herbs in the beginning and fresh at the end) or when cooking meat.  Hang it to dry and use all winter.  Your garlic will also store all winter, just keep it in a cool dry place.  The cucumber plants have slowed down so you'll receive just one this week.  Use your eggplant, zucchinis and tomatoes in ratatouille.  Here are some more potato, eggplant and beet recipes.  Happy cooking!

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