Farm Newsletter September 19, 2016

img_0636Farm Newsletter September 19, 2016

Farm News       Crop Forecast

U-Pick              Recipes               Nuts and Bolts

Save the Date — Come join the Fun!!
September 24, 2016 at 4 pm
Farm Party Fundraiser for Harvest for the Hungry!
Music from The Counterfactuals and The Ericksons!
Beer from Finnegan’s and Hard Cider from Keepsake Cidery!

Greetings Friends!

Yay Sun!  A three-letter word.  Less is more, eh?

Amidst a great harvest week and concerns about crops rotting in the field, we did find that all the celeriac rotted, and about half of the pumpkins.  Of all the things to rot, these are probably the least important of what we do.  Though it’s not true, because we love it and we know some of you do, we’ve been joking that no one really cares about celeriac anyway.  We also lost some spaghetti squash that rotted before it ripened, but we still have a decent amount, including a new smaller variety.  Pumpkins are easy to find other places.  Celeriac may not be as widely available, but if you love it enough to shop for it, you will find it at Just Food.  Usually it’s ours there, but they should be able to get it from another local grower.  As for other crops, they are responding to the sunshine and looking great!

Your commitment to us and the farm is a vital part of our role in feeding the community; without your sharing in the risk those little losses would have a bigger impact on our bottom line.  Instead, there’s just less of them to go around.  We have lots and lots of other beautiful veggies coming in now, and a good fall harvest lined up for you to eat.  We’ll enjoy getting it ready for you, and we hope you enjoy eating it!

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Crop Forecast

This is the time of fall colors in your food, and sweet hearty flavors.  There’s no cold cold weather in the forecast, which will change the lineup somewhat, but here’s a rough guide to what’s new and changing in the share for the final 1/3 of the season:

This week we start Winter Squash for real (spaghetti, buttercup, pie pumpkins, carnival, acorn, delicata), and we should have 1-2 per week in the share til the end of October.  The smaller varieties ripen first, then butternut and ambercup should be good in a couple weeks.    (Eat this smaller varieties soon, as they can go by quicker.  On acorn and carnival check the orange spot — a little wrinkling means eat it now before it goes down the tubes.)  Also this week your choice of 1 large pumpkin or pie pumpkin outside.  Plus watermelon radishes.  Less red peppers, still some green ones left. Broccoli and Cauliflower look good.  Cucumbers are almost done, but summer squash and eggplant are hanging on.  We’ll probably pick some parsnips to fill their place — the parsnips actually taste really good already!

Next week we’ll do shallots and/or cipollini onions — but maybe for only a week.  They did not like the cold in May, then the wet summer, so yields of them were very low.   Kohlrabi should still be around, though winding down.  Tomatoes should still be trickling in.

In October we’ll be picking leeks and parsnips, and as their flavors mature we’ll add sweet potatoes and brussels sprouts.  All along we should have carrots, beets, onions, squash, kale, spinach lettuce and greens, broccoli, cabbage (we’ll be short on red though), and those beautiful radishes.  The last week can be a stretch for some things, depending how cold it is, but we’ll see.  For U-pick, after fr-st it’ll just be calendula in the flowers, maybe raspberries, and most herbs but not basil.  We’ll try to send out a fr-st warning if there are beans and cherry tomatoes left to pick at the last moment.

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What’s for U-Pick?

Basil — Has downy mildew, but you can still find some good leaves out there!

Cherry Tomatoes – are down to a final gleaning.  We’ll plant a lil more next year, and hope they do better.  

Tomatillos —  Have been gapping, but hopefully that last round will be coming soon.  Salsa verde (green salsa) is super easy to make, here’s the recipe on our website.  Freeze it in a baggie once it cools, or better yet in ice cube trays (them put them in a bag once frozen) and you will appreciate the flavor in February.  The texture isn’t usually great for dipping once it’s been frozen, but with beans in a meal it’s refreshing.

Flowers and Green Beans — Still going strong despite the weeds.  We just couldn’t get those weeds taken care of in August; maybe we’ll get back to them.

Plus cilantro, dill, lemon balm, mint, Thai basil, parsley, oregano and thyme.

Please always check the U-pick board when you’re here to confirm what’s available and picking amounts.  Please bring your own scissors for U-pick.  If you don’t have them with you, ask Erin or Ben or one of the crew and we can loan them. 

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Nuts and Bolts

Sign up Starting this week

for the November Storage Share 

Thursday, November 17, 2016  10am – 6 pm

1) Like last year, we can store some carrots and other root crops for you, in the root cellar.

2) If you are able this year, again we’re grateful for full payment in September.  It will help us with continued construction overruns and related expenses.  If that doesn’t work for you, no worries, we of course understand.

3) In addition to the November Storage Share, we’ll be open again with the “winter store” starting in December.  This is for folks who want more roots through the winter, and/or don’t want the variety in the storage share, and/or for whom storing the crops isn’t feasible.  However, we will almost definitely not have winter squash, potatoes, garlic, onions or other crops available at the “winter store.”  The root storage is for just a few root crops — it’s too cold and humid for everything else.  If you want the other crops — and we think you should, they’re all so good! —  please buy a storage share.  Also, if it works for you, the storage share is definitely the best deal for you.  It’s an efficient, one day extravaganza for us, given the amount and variety of food it adds up to.  You can buy by the pound to suit your needs at the “winter roots store,” but prices will be higher as there is a little extra expense in it for us.

You can sign up with one of us in the barn.

A deposit of $10, or the full amount, by Oct 21st will hold your spot.

For a price, we believe $90 is fair for all of us.

In general, this year’s storage share will be similar to the last seven (!) years’, varying according to this year’s yields.  It is separate from the regular season share, a one-time pickup in November before Thanksgiving, and we hope it looks something like this: two bags of super sweet fall carrots (20 lbs total), a smaller bag of mixed fall roots, 3-5 squash, +/- 10 lb potatoes, +/- 5 lb sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, garlic, onions and leeks, kale and maybe cabbage. For dried herbs, a selection of thyme, sage, oregano and rosemary.

It’s early to predict yields and September will tell us more, but yields for all these crops are looking about average.  Of course nothing is certain to be in the share, and sharing the losses and bounties are part of the CSA relationship — but right now we don’t see any big changes to that veggie lineup.  Note that we did stop growing our own potatoes this year, to simplify our lives a little and remove our most challenging and least rewarding crop from the to-do list — potatoes this year (still included in the storage share) will be from our friends at Driftless Organics in Wisconsin.

All for $90, a fair and reasonable price for all of us. We provide info and inspiration on eating and storing all that goodness too!  The picture below is most of one storage share. Let us know if you have any thoughts on it or questions about it, we’re happy to answer questions.  If there’s any part of it you won’t be interested in having, just let us know on the pickup day and we’ll donate it to the food shelf.  We love providing this food for you, we hope you enjoy cooking and eating it!

Slide Show

 September 24, 2016 at 4 pm

Farm Party Fundraiser for Harvest for the Hungry!
Music from The Counterfactuals and The Ericksons
Beer from Finnegan’s and Hard Cider from Keepsake Cidery
Next door at Spring Wind Farm and Little Hill Berry Farm
Please BRING A PICNIC DINNER for your family to enjoy
Sogn Valley Craft Fair — Saturday Oct 1st from 10-5, Sunday Oct 2nd from 10-4.
We’ll be selling veggies there on Saturday, at least our 9th year in that wonderful place.  Sogn Valley Farm will be there with veggies on Sunday.  The art, people and location are all lovely.  www.sognvalleyartfair.com has more info and directions; it’s about 20 minutes east of Northfield, on a farm with a pottery in the old granary.

Bulk Produce for You — Check here each newsletter for what we have available for extra purchase.

To place a bulk order, simply call or email us at least 2 days ahead of the day you’d like to pick it up.  Orders can be picked up at the farm during our regular pickup hours, but it doesn’t have to be your share pickup day.

This week’s selection is : Last chance for Tomato Boxes!  Seconds 12 lb for $20, Firsts 12 lb for $24.    Plus — Lettuce Mix for $5 / lb,Carrots, Beets, Golden Beets for $1 / lb, Green Cabbage for 60 cents/lb, Eggplant (Globe) for $1.50 / lb.  Plus Garlic for $1 / head — available in the barn, no need to pre-order garlic.

Share Pickup Hours Monday Wednesday Friday 2:00-6:00pm. You can U-Pick any time (when U-pick crops are in season.)

Please Drive Carefully —Children are everywhere.

We hope you enjoy the harvest,

Your farmers,

Erin and Ben, with Allia, Aaron Ray, Ali, Annie, Anna, Jesse, and Paul

Thai Style Salad with Daikon NoodlesFrom Patrice Johnson in the Star Tribune

For the vinaigrette:

Juice of 1 lime

3 tbsp. rice vinegar

2 tbsp. peanuts, crushed plus more for garnish (or 1 tbs. peanut butter)

1 tbsp. soy sauce

1 tbsp. hot sauce

3 tsp. honey

2 tsp. grated fresh ginger

2 tsp. sesame oil

1 garlic clove, grated

¼ tsp. fish sauce

1/3 to ½ cup vegetable oil

For the salad:

2 cups daikon radish, use spiralizer or vegetable peeler to shave into thin strips

2 cups mixed greens

2 cups bok choy, chopped

1 cup carrots, sliced thin

1 cup red pepper, sliced thin

1 cup mango, sliced thin

¼ cup red onion, sliced thin

1 jalapeno, deveined and seeded, sliced thin

½ cup mixed fresh herbs (such as cilantro, green onion, thai basil, mint)

For the vinaigrette: Whisk together the lime juice, rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons peanuts, soy sauce, hot sauce, honey, ginger, sesame oil, garlic, fish sauce, and vegetable oil, until emulsified.

Beet and Apple Slaw

from Recipes from America’s Small Farms by Joanne Lamb Hayes & Lori Stein

1 pound beets, peeled and grated

1 pound apples, peeled and grated

½ pound savoy cabbage, very thinly sliced

salt and pepper

¾ cup sugar

¾ cup cider vinegar

¾ cup mayonnaise

Combine the beets, apples, and cabbage in a large nonreactive bowl. Season with salt and pepper to 8 taste and set aside.

Combine the sugar and vinegar in a small saucepan. Warm over very low heat, stirring, until the sugar is dissolved. Set aside until completely cool. Very gradually whisk the mixture into the mayonnaise in a small bowl. Add more salt and pepper to taste.

Fold the dressing into the slaw mixture; cover and refrigerate for about 3 hours. Stir again before serving.

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