Greetings Farm Friends!
The farm at this point of the year is bursting with green cover crops and neatly tended rows (well, kind of neat) of greens and roots. Fall is still mystifying to me as a farmer. During spring, you plant and everything grows. You can set your watch by it. For the fall, vegetables seem to take on a personality of their own, deciding to grow at their own individual pace. Radishes stay true to the calender, Collards grow as fast as you can cut them, but broccoli languishes and teases you for weeks on end… Despite having to tend to a large family of unruly vegetables, it’s hard not to be content seeing the farm continue to produce such wonderful food after so many months of weeding, watering and (more than a little) cursing. I’ve been quite proud of what we’ve been able to scratch out of the dirt this season, and I hope we’ve been able to fill both your bellies and minds with something unique and tasty.
I can hardly believe it, but our fall season is all but at a close. For several of you this is the last week, and I want to say how much I appreciate all of your comments and support. No season on a farm such as ours is without challenges and travails, but throughout it all you have been present with open minds and a healthy appetite for adventure. I hope you have made some fond food memories along the way, and most of all I hope you are able to continue supporting local sustainable agriculture- We need more folks like you.
We have prepared a quick, 10 question survey about the fall season, and we would really appreciate your feedback. You can find the link HERE
. Your responses will help shape our program in the future, so please let us know what you think!
Also, If you are interested in getting the occasional box over the winter, you can sign up for our Winter CSA Email List. We have a ton of beautiful produce loaded up in our three hoophouses including arugula, beets, carrots, spinach and turnips. We also have 1000 stubborn broccoli plants that we planted for the fall season CSA that will be ready on their own time between now and Christmas (please don’t make me eat them all…). If you are interested in getting additional veggies this winter, you can sign up HERE
In addition, we are also making preparations for the Spring season (we’ve planted over 5,000 strawberry plants already!), and as current CSA members, you have priority on signing up. If you want to go ahead and get on the list for Spring (we will start on mid-April) you can do so HERE
. We are planning on expanding the program next year, so if any of you find the drive to your pick up location a little too far, now is the time to let us know and we can work on putting together a closer pickup. We hope you can join us for what should be an incredible spring!
In The Box
We are sending some of you fine folks out in style this week. The first fall leeks are ready just in time, and we also have some lovely large rutabagas from our neighbor, Crystal Organic Farm.
-1# Apples (Beech Creek Farm)
-1 bunch Leeks
-1 head Endive
-1 bunch Swiss Chard
-1# Rutabaga (Crystal Organic Farm)
-2 green Bell Peppers
-2# Sweet Potatoes
-1# Winter Radish
-1 head Kohlrabi
-1 bunch Italian Parsley
Recipes and Ideas
2 pounds rutabaga, peeled and cut into cubes
1 clove garlic, sliced
2 tablespoons butter
1 -2 tablespoons skim milk
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
freshly ground white pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
Fill a stockpot with cold water and add 1 teaspoon salt. Place the rutabagas and garlic in the pot and bring to a boil. Cook until very tender, between 30 to 45 minutes. Drain well and then place in the bowl of a food processor and puree until smooth. Return the pureed rutabaga to the pot and simmer over medium-low, stirring continually until the remaining liquid evaporates. Add the butter, skim milk, 1/2 teaspoon salt, ground white pepper and thyme, stirring until well combined. Serve warm.
Kohlrabi Au Gratin
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon butter
1 lb kohlrabi, trimmed and peeled
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2/3 cup grated cheese (combine Parmesan with Emmentaler)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Rub the inside of a small, shallow ceramic casserole with the garlic. Grease it with the butter. Meanwhile, slice the kohlrabi very thinly. You may want to first cut it in half from end to end. Lay the kohlrabi slices in the casserole overlapping like shingles, seasoning them with salt as you go. You may make two or three layers. Cover with the cream and shake the casserole a little to distribute the salt. Lay the casserole on a baking sheet and place in the oven. As the cream browns, break it up and push it under the cream underneath, scraping any brown bits from the side of the casserole and incorporating those as well. Continue doing this for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the kohlrabi is perfectly tender and the cream has been almost completely absorbed. Sprinkle the cheese over the gratin and continue baking until the cheese is completely melted and lightly browned. Serve hot.
Involved, but worth it!
5 Leeks, big, with outer leaves trimmed back, washed
3 knobs butter
3 cloves garlic, peeled & finely sliced
3 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves picked
1 white wine, small glass
black pepper, freshly ground
1 pints chicken stock
12 slices Prosciutto, thin
16 ounces lasagne sheets, 2 X 8oz packs
flour, for dusting
2 handfuls Parmesan, freshly grated (plus extra for serving)
1 handful dried porcini mushrooms, small handful
½ piece ciabatta bread, preferably stale, cut into chunks
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 sprigs fresh rosemary
Halve the leeks lengthways and cut at an angle into 1/2-inch slices. Heat a wide saucepan, add a splash of oil and a knob of the butter, and when you can hear a gentle sizzling add the sliced garlic, thyme leaves and leeks. Move the leeks around so every piece gets coated. Pour in the wine, season with pepper and stir in the stock. Cover the leeks with the slices of Prosciutto, place a lid on the pan and cook gently for about 25 to 30 minutes. Once the leeks are tender, take the pan off the heat.
To make the pangrattato, whiz the mushrooms and bread with a pinch of salt and pepper in a food processor until the mixture looks like breadcrumbs. Heat a generous glug of olive oil in a frying pan. Add the garlic cloves and the rosemary and cook for a minute, then fry the breadcrumbs in the oil until golden and crisp. Keep shaking the pan — don’t let the breadcrumbs catch on the bottom. Drain on kitchen paper, discard the rosemary and garlic, and allow the breadcrumbs to cool.
Bring a big pan of salted water to the boil. Lay the lasagna sheets on a clean working surface and sprinkle with a little flour. Place the sheets on top of each other and slice into 1/2-inch strips. Toss through your fingers to shake out the pappardelle, then cook in the boiling water for 2 minutes or until al dente.
Remove the Prosciutto from the saucepan, slice up and stir back into the leeks. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then stir in the Parmesan and the rest of the butter. Drain the pasta, reserving a little of the cooking water, and add the pasta to the leeks. Add a little of the cooking water if need be, to give you a silky, smooth sauce. Serve quickly, sprinkled with some pangrattato, extra Parmesan and any leftover thyme tips. Serve the rest of the pangrattato in a bowl on the side.