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Newsletter
Summer Share #8  
July 20-26, 2015

 

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Mary Lou's kittens have come out of the haymow to explore and discovered the mulberry tree.

Calendar & Reminders

Box Pickup - to help you find your box more efficiently, your name is now posted on both the front and back sides in a bright color. Please take the box with your name on it.

July 26th,1 to 4pm - Farm Party. Please RSVP by responding "yes" to this newsletter if you can come. We'll have brats, beer, plates, cups, forks, napkins and punch. Maybe a couple kids' games for fun. Bring a dish to pass and come see the farm, meet other members and enjoy the day. We look forward to spending time with you!

Sunday, September 20 - Bike the Barns Event. 
http://www.csacoalition.org/news/2015-bike-the-barns/

All produce is soaked, sprayed off or dunked in cold water to remove dirt and to cool it down. However we recommend washing the produce in your box before eating or preparing it.

Please remember to return your empty white wax box or black plastic box each week. If you'd rather not have to remember it, you can bring your own bag/box to the drop-site, change out your produce and leaving the box there. Thanks to all who are remembering to return your boxes.

Previous editions of our newsletter are on our Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/pages/My-Fine-Homestead/145013635612327

This Week's Box

Please note: This is the produce we harvested and packed for Thursday's shares. The Saturday and Monday boxes will be similar but may change depending on produce availability.
 

Full Share:  (Black Box - take the one with your name)

Green Beans - 1/2 lb
Yellow Wax Beans - 1/2 lb

Zucchini - 3 
Yellow Summer Squash - 1
Green Striped Summer Squash - 1
Slicing Cucumber - 1 
Sugar Snap Peas - 1 lb Crunchy, sweet and juicy both the pod and peas are edible. Remove the string along the front before eating by grasping the stem, snapping and pulling the string down and off.
Green Onions - 1 bunch 

Fennel - 1
Garlic -1 fresh bulb 
Since it hasn't been dried, it should be used within a week or two.
Kohlrabi - 2 See vegetable spotlight & recipes on collard greens.
 

 

Half Share: (White Wax Box - take the one with your name)
 

Green Beans - 1/4 lb 
Yellow Wax Beans - 1/4 lb 

Zucchini - 2 
Slicing Cucumber - 1 
Green Onions - 1 bunch 

Garlic -1 fresh bulb Since it hasn't been dried, it should be used within a week or two.
Kohlrabi -  1 See vegetable spotlight & recipes on collard greens.

Contact us with any questions on the contents of your box or for ideas of what to do with them. We are always happy to talk "food" with you!

On the Farm . . . what's happening this week in words and pictures.
 

We've been busy, busy on the farm this week.
 

  • The garlic has been all harvested and is starting to cure. We tie the with stalks, bulbs and roots on a string and hang them to dry for about two weeks. This ensures they will store for up to 6 - 8 months. Many times the garlic you purchase at the grocery store has been kept in cold storage instead of being dried and may sprout when brought to and kept at room temperature. Below is the wagon full of harvested garlic. Next to it Nicole and Aidan are cleaning bulbs for the fresh garlic in your box this week. 
  • As I mentioned (or maybe carried on about?) in last week's newsletter, we've spent considerable time weeding this week. Carrots - check, onions - several rows completed, gladiolas - check, fennel - check, peppers - check, tomatoes - ummm . . . the week isn't over yet!
  • Bill is busy watering again. We are filling out paperwork to obtain a farm loan for several projects including 2 small high tunnels for Winter Produce Share crops, but mainly to fund a new irrigation system.
  • We planted lettuces, beans, peas, radishes, etc. for fall.
  • Bill, with Liam's help constructed a bigger walk-in moveable chicken pen for the broiler chickens. Below is a picture of the pens we've been using. Next to it is a picture of the broiler chickens in their new digs!
  • Clean-up!!! The farm party is this Sunday. We will not complete all the projects on the list to show-off the farm at its best however, we have tamed a few forgotten cluttered areas
And just to make it a crazy week, last night, we experienced some Urgent Care Drama. Aidan was cutting some big weeds behind the barn. The goats love the tasty burdock leaves! He was using a curved scythe and whacked partway through a bunch of weeds. He put more force behind the next stroke expecting it to be equally hard to cut. It sliced more easily and continued past the stalks through a recently developed hole in his rubber boot and into the bottom of his foot. 

Bill cleaned the wound with cold water for a good 15 to 20 minutes and wrapped it with gauze. The bleeding stopped. Aidan decided he wanted to go to Urgent Care and get stitches. The doctor put in 3 sutures and said he needs to stay off it for 2 days. Here is a picture of Aidan waiting for his foot to  numb. He said those shots were the worst part. (The wound is covered.)




Later at home surrounded by pain management medicine, bandages, non-stick tape and Aidan asleep, I marveled at how lucky we are. Statistics show farming is dangerous for kids. Bill and I, while aware of that fact having grown up on farms and knowing kids hurt and even killed in farm accidents, often get caught up in the "busy" of our business and assume nothing will happen to Liam, Aidan and Marlee. The inherent dangers can be lessoned with knowledge, caution and practical sense, but we were reminded that they are always there.

Living on the farm with space to "roam" and experiencing life through nature and its seasons along with learning the responsibility of chores is a valuable gift our kids will reap the benefits of their whole lives. We have. Last night was an opportunity for us to be mindful of the present and to be thankful as well as respectful of our life together on the farm.

Stacey

Vegetable Spotlight on Collard Greens




 

Non-heading cabbages, like collard greens and kale, have been mainstays of human diets for much of recorded history. It's likely that the "collard" is a phonetic evolution of the name "colewart" (cabbage that does not form a head), a medieval garden staple. While they have yet to catch on in American kitchens, globally, they receive the royal treatment. Collards are a great source of calcium, iron, fiber, potassium, folate, and vitamins C, K, and A. They contain about 11 calories per cup.

Hearty collard leaves grow on a central stem. They are full-flavored and sweet, with a mild bitterness. The flat paddlelike leaves feel thick and almost leathery and retain a pleasant chewiness when cooked. Smaller leaves are predictably more tender. You can use these more tender leaves as raw greens, or you can steam for a minute to take the raw edge off and to make them easier to roll if using as a wrap. Look for bunches that have ben kept cold, and store them in the coldest part of the refridgerator. Separate the leaves from the stems for cooking.

In the South, collard greens are subjected to prolonged cooking, usually in bacon fat, until they form a soft mass. They are also delicious cooked to medium-firm or sliced thin and sautéed. They are versatile, working well with either simple seasoning or pungent flavors, like curry or chiles.

I've included 2 recipes below for you to try. Let us know how you prepare yours – we’d love to hear how you chose to use your kohlrabi leaves!

Quick Collards Saute
(Brassicas by Laura B. Russell)

The author likes to follow the Brazilian tradition of the quick sauté for collards. She serves a mound of these collards topped with an over-easy egg for breakfast. Break the yoik and let it ooze throughout the greens as a tasty sauce.


Serves 4 to 6

1-1/2 lbs of collard greens (about 2 bunches), center ribs (if thick) and stems removed)
3 Tbl olive oil
4 cloves garlic
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp kosher salt

Stack the leaves, roll them up lengthwise into a tight cigar shape and, using a chef's knife, cut the greens crosswise into very thin shreds. Rinse them well and spin dry. (You can rinse them before or after shredding.)


Unless you have an extremely large pan, plan to cook in two batches. They will cook down significantly, though not as much as spinach. Heat half of the oil in a large (12 inches or wider), deep frying pan over medium heat. Add half of the garlic and cook, stirring, for about 30 seconds, until fragrant. Add half of the collards and turn them with tongs to coat them with the garlicky oil. (you may need to add the greens in batches and let the first one wilt before adding more.) Stir in half of the red pepper flakes and 1/4 tsp of the salt. Cook the greens, turning them occasionally, for 3 to 4 minutes, until wilted. Transfer the collards to a serving bowl and repeat with the remaining oil, garlic, greens, red pepper flakes, and salt. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Variations: This sauté works equally well with other greens, such as kale or
kohlrabi greens. If you prefer softer greens, add a few minutes to the cooking time or cover the pan and steam them off the heat for 5 minutes.

Curried Collard Greens
(Brassicas by Laura B. Russell)

Author's hybrid version of Ethiopiam gomen wat and Indian saag. She says because the greens have a complex flavor, you can serve them alongside simply seasoned grilled chicken thighs, lamb, or pork chops.

2 Tbl unsalted butter
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno chile (or less if you prefer), stemmed, seeded, and thinly sliced
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
2 bunches collard greens (about 1 1/2 lbs total) center ribs and tough stems removed, leaves cut crosswise into narrow ribbons
3/4 tsp kosher salt
6 Tbl water
2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

In a medium pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and chile and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes, until the onion starts to soften. Stir in the cumin, coriander, and turmeric.

Add the collard greens and turn them with tongs to coat them with the spiced onion. (you may need to add the greens in batches and let the first batch wilt before adding more.) Stir in the salt and water, turn down the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes, until the greens are wilted and tender. If you prefer softer greens, remove the pan from the heat and steam the greens, covered, for 5 minutes longer. Stir in the lemon juice and serve hot or at room temperature.
 
FairShare CSA Coalition is launching their second Partner Shares Donation Drive. It started July 20 and runs through Friday, August 7! The Goal: Raise $5,000 to support the Partner Shares program.

What is the Partner Shares program?

Partner Shares is a cost-sharing program that provides financial assistance to limited-income households for purchasing CSA vegetable shares.

For eligible households, FairShare will contribute 50%, up to $300, toward the cost of shares from FairShare-endorsed CSA farms. Only on-farm produced shares are eligible.

The participants take on the responsibilities of being a good CSA member of the farm of their choice, and work with FairShare to complete an affordable payment plan for the remaining cost of their share.

If you'd like to donate to the Partner Shares Drive, you have two options:
  • Donate Online
http://www.csacoalition.org/news/share-the-seasons-bounty/
 
  • Donate by Mail
Please make checks payable to ‘FairShare CSA Coalition’ and mail donations to:
 
FairShare CSA Coalition
303 S. Paterson St. #1B
Madison, WI 53703

 
“Thank you, Partner Shares! We wouldn’t have been financially able to participate in a CSA without you! The whole family loves to see what yummy & colorful surprises we get to eat each week!” ~Heather R., Partner Shares Farm Member

Help us raise $5,000 so that more families can enjoy the bounty of the season by joining a FairShare CSA farm!
Find out more about the Partner Shares program.
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