Hello Folks and welcome to week one of our Fall CSA, and welcome back to our CSA members from the Spring and Summer season! We are so excited that our fields, our seas of greens, are back! It was a wild ride towards the end of summer with all the heat, but with a new planting and lots of irrigation we are back and we will hopefully be able to provide everyone with a wonderful fall season full of yummy vegetables. I hope y'all are hungry!
Speaking of hungry, the deer sure have been! I guess we have had the only thing green in the great city of Flora with all the heat. Van, Hazel, and I have been sleeping at the farm to make sure we are keeping a watchful eye on crops they find the most tastey. Fortunately, it has been really nice sleeping under the stars, and thankfully our dogs enjoy having a night watch too.
We hope you all enjoy your first fall CSA harvest. The fields are full of fall greens just waiting to be shared around your dinner table. If there is ever a question about an item in your box please shoot us an email. We only grow things that we're excited about eating ourselves and that grow well in our area. Below is a list of the contents of your veggie boxes and recipe suggestions. All I have left to say is Thank you God for this rain!! And of course happy cooking and cheers to a great season!
1. Tomatoes- That's right. Juicy, beefy Fall tomatoes right off the vine. Sweet!!
2. Summer Squash- Toss on the grill, eat raw in salads, stuff them with other veggies and cheese or simply dip in hummus.
3. Zucchini- same as above.
4. Cucumbers- an assortment of pickling cucumbers and slicer. The round variety is a Lemon cucumber and the light green smaller ones are Salt and Pepper variety, our personal favorite. We found no need to pickle, at least not yet, as they were mild and sweet, and great to throw in a salad, but please feel free to do so and let us know how they turn out. And then the slicer cucumber, you know what to do.
5. Lettuce- a head of hydroponic Romaine lettuce from our good pals next door at Salad Days.
6. Kale- we grow a few varieties of kale, this variety is Red Russian. So sweet and delicious in salads. Or toss in the oven to make a great healthy chip. Kale yeah!!
7. Kohlrabi- this is a delightful vegetable to us. We have been looking forward to it since spring. This may be a new vegetable to some of you and we are thrilled to share it with you along with some recipes to help guide you. Make sure to peel skin until you get to a great crispy center. It's kind of like the apple of vegetables. This is a favorite of mine to chop up raw and add to salads, make a slaw, or try with a favorite dip. It is a versatile vegetable and a great potato substitute! Mash it, bake it, fry it, put it in stews, the sky is the limit! You can eat the stems and greens too!
8. Radishes- the variety is French Breakfast. They have a nice mild peppery bite. Be sure to remove the greens before storing in your fridge so they stay crisp! Save the greens for stir fries, pestos, or add to soups.
9. Acorn squash- this bad boy is a favorite to throw in the oven. Simple and sweet. Stuff it, mash it, throw in with soups. It screams fall!
Warm Kale Salad
YIELD: 2-4 servings
PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 20 minutes
1 acorn squash, seeds removed and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup
salt and pepper
pinch of dried sage
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 bunch kale, stems removed, leaves chopped
3 tablespoons maple syrup
3 tablespoons good quality balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup of raw pumpkin seeds
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray rimmed baking sheet with non stick spray and set aside.
In a large bowl, place sliced squash, 2 tablespoons of maple syrup, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and sage. Toss to combine. Spread squash rings and liquid evenly onto prepared baking sheet. Roast squash for 15-20 minutes or until tender.
Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add remaining olive oil and kale. Stir kale until coated with oil and beginning to wilt, about 30 seconds. Pour remaining maple syrup and vinegar over kale and continue to stir until kale is bright green and tender, but not completely wilted about 30 - 60 seconds more. Remove kale to a large bowl.
Top kale with roasted squash and sprinkle with pumpkin seeds.
Kohlrabi and Leek Soup
YIELD: 2-4 servings
PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 30 minutes
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 cup chopped leeks, white and light green parts only
1 yellow onion, diced
1 teaspoon salt
1 large russet potato, cut into 1/2 inch thick chunks (about 1 cup)
1 large or two small kohlrabi, greens and stems removed and cut into 1/2 inch thick
chunks (about 2 1/2 cups)
4 cups vegetable broth
1 bay leaf
1/4 cup chopped parley
drizzle of extra virgin olive oil to finish
Heat the olive in a large pot over medium heat. Add the crushed red pepper flakes, thyme, leeks and onion. Cook, stirring often, until the onions begin to soften and become fragrant. About 5 minutes.
Add the salt, potato, kohlrabi, vegetable broth and bay leaf. Bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes.
Discard the bay leaf and puree the soup in a high speed blender until smooth and creamy. You may need to add the soup in batches. Taste test and adjust seasonings as needed.
Return to the pan and keep on low heat until ready to serve. Divide between bowls and top with minced parsley, a drizzle of olive oil and additional salt pepper to taste. Enjoy with crusty bread and a glass of red wine.