CSA Week 14— bean town!

Now that we are in full summer time mode, much of our time during the week spent harvesting. 20140726_100847We harvest tomatoes, beans, okra,melons, corn, cucumbers, and squash every other day.   As an apprentice I looked forward to these times on the farm, when the farm work slowed down and the harvesting amped up (as I love harvesting). Now as a manager, this constant harvesting makes it difficult to get the farm work done, and finding the time to weed, plant and trellis is near impossible!   As our first succession of tomatoes winds down, our second and third successions are starting to give us fruit! just like we planned ! The okra is now producing enough for us to include in the share, and is almost so tall we can harvest under the canopy. We lost most of our first succession of beans to deer a month ago, but now our second succession is starting to produce like crazy. It took the 3 of us about 3.5 hours to harvest green beans yesterday, 72 pounds worth! These will be in the share next week and for many weeks to come.   20140728_165919

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Our red to green bell peppers have been having a hard time this past month, the heat and rain is not a good combination for them, and being near tomatoes that are diseased (cause of the rain) is causing diseases to transfer over to the peppers. The main issue being that many of the plants are stunted in growth, and those that are not stunted, are not producing flowers. I have noticed flowers developing and then falling off before being pollinated. This is also happening to our eggplant. Mainly this is a sign of stress to the plants, that they are unhappy. if you have been wondering where all the peppers and eggplant are, now you know. It’s not that we are keeping them from you, its that the plants themselves are having a rough time right now. There is a chance they good grow out of it once the temperature cools down. For now it is going to be pretty impossible for us to include eggplant in the share, and we will try to hand out red to green bell peppers as best we can, fortunately are colored bells are starting to produce! Do not worry too much, as summer squash, beans, winter squash and southern peas are on the way shortly, to provide some diversity to the summer shares.

 

Joining a CSA is about both the risk and reward, and this season has been fantastic so far, we hope to bring back more beets and spinach to make up for the spring, and hopefully the peppers and eggplant will pull through. For happy and exciting final note, we have begun seeding for fall in our outdoor greenhouse set up. When you pick up your shares, feel free to stop by and see all our new plants growing. We have a great fall season planned! ( I cant believe its going to be august soon!)

-Ashley


Recipes:


Cherry Tomato Couscous Recipe-share13  Ingredients:

  • 3 cups cooked couscous
  • 1/2 a basket of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 medium cucumber, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
  • 1 lime, cut in half
  • about 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • fine grain sea salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup basil or cilantro, chopped
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled

Preparation: Combine the couscous, tomatoes, cucumber, and chickpeas in a large bowl. Lori – squeezes the lemon and lime juice directly into the bowl, so start by giving a good squeeze of lemon and lime juice into the bowl, add the olive oil, and some salt and pepper. Toss well, taste, and adjust with more of the above until it tastes just right. Lori notes – this really needs a generous amount of salt, and the lemon and lime juices might need to be adjusted depending on how juicy the fruit is. Add the basil and feta and toss gently until it is evenly dispersed. *To cook the couscous: Either follow the package instructions or bring 3 1/2 cups of water to a boil, stir in a scant 2 teaspoons fine grain sea salt and 2 cups of couscous. Cover and remove from heat. Steam for 5 to 10 minutes and then use a fork to fluff up the couscous. Nutrition: 249 calories, 30g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 7g protein Tomato and Roasted Pepper Salad-   Ingredients:

  • 3 ounces crusty bread, torn into bite-size pieces (2cups)
  • 2 tsp + 3 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tsp sherry vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tbsp. chopped almonds
  • 2 medium tomatoes, cored and cut into wedges
  • 2 bell peppers, roasted and cut into ½ inch strips
  • 1 tbsp. parsley, chopped

Preparation: Preheat oven to 450 degrees, on a baking sheet – toss bread with 2 tsp oil and season with salt and pepper, spread bread in a single layer and bake until golden brown (7 minutes).  Combine remaining 3 tsp of oil, vinegar, garlic and almonds in a large bowl – season with salt and pepper.  Add tomatoes, peppers, parsley and toasted bread.  Toss to combine. Nutrition: serves 4, 191 calories, 8g fat, 26g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 5g protein     Corn Chowder: Ashley  Whenever corn is in season, I always crave at least one batch of corn chowder. I just made this on Sunday for myself! If you have any potatoes extra around its perfect with the peppers and onions in the share.   Ingredients:

  • 3 ears of corn
  • On pepper-diced
  • One medium onion-minced., I like to do white and red mixed.
  • leeks- you could also add diced leeks here if you have a surplus.
  • 3 cloves of garlic-minced
  • Potatoes-diced
  • Salt, pepper, butter, chicken or vegetable stock, and milk or cream.

Preparation: Saute the onions and garlic together in a bit of oil. Once the onions of turned translucent, add the peppers, cook for a few more minutes, then add a few tablespoons of corn, and continue cooking. Then add the potatoes and enough stock to cover everything in the pan. Cook until potatoes are tender.   At this point you can add fresh herbs, salt and pepper, other seasonings, and cream or milk. I like to puree half the soup, and then add the other half, so you get a flavorful thick soup base and the texture of the corn and potatoes in the soup. *You can also add bacon or diced hot peppers in the first saute for flavor, and you could char, roast or grill the corn beforehand for extra flavor as well.

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