Be prepared for a couple more weeks of spring greens. Charles has been busy planting. This week he seeded sweet corn, summer squash, carrots, and beets. Expect broccoli and cabbage soon. We are now in full irrigation mode because of the hot weather.
What to do with your farm produce this week by Hannah Brown
Are spring onions the same
thing as green onions (scallions)? The simple answer is no! While they are very
similar in appearance, spring onions have bulbs at their base. Green onion
plants will never produce bulbs. They are both members of the Allium plant
genus, which also includes garlic, chives, leeks, and shallots. This group of
plants is well-known for its pungent flavor and smell. This is caused by
cysteine sulfides and other related compounds produced by these plants. Flavor
potency actually depends on the sulfate levels within the soil they are grown
in. Sulfur-free farming of Allium plants will result in a loss of this characteristic
Spring onions are
typically harvested in the springtime, which is where their name comes from.
Due to their early harvest, the immature bulbs provide a more tender, milder
onion flavor compared to a fully mature onion. You can incorporate them into
your recipes just like you would with a regular onion. They can be enjoyed as a
whole plant (raw, roasted, grilled, etc.) or the bulb can be cut off and
consumed like a pearl onion. Nutritionally, they are a great source of vitamins
A, C, and K, calcium, and iron. 1 cup chopped will also provide about 3 grams
Here are some great spring onion recipes to check out!
The simple pleasure of a bag of fresh produce each week that still smells like the earth and comes with the prospect of shared meals is a wonder. This week, especially, it embodies all the promises of a community that cares about and supports diversity in all its forms. As a CSA subscriber, you are part of a community that connects people to each other and to the place you inhabit. Our CSA includes over 100 subscribers. Beyond the community of subscribers, we also have community members who have donated CSA shares to the Talawanda Oxford Food Pantry (TOPSS); added to these shares the IF farm donates almost 50 lbs of produce each week to TOPSS. We also have interns on the farm who are learning about healthy soil, healthy plants, and healthy food; and volunteers helping farm staff. I hope, as you enjoy a meal this week made with produce from your share, you will think about the living, breathing life of soil, plants, food, and people, and all the interconnections between them.
Chard (double share)
Tentative produce list for 6/11…
Carleton is an Asian green that flowers in the late spring and so it is seen a signifier of progression from spring to summer. You can eat the flowers on the Carleton in celebration of this seasonal transition. Also, be aware that Chinese cabbage has been soaked in salt water this week to remove the slugs. You might still find some hanging on. This is a good thing; lots of slugs are an indicator of living, healthy soils. Right now on the farm we are flush with greens. As we move into summer and dryer weather at the end of the month, you should expect a decrease in the number of items in your share. Once the summer plantings catch up, things will increase again.
What to do with your produce this week by interns Hannah Brown (Carleton) and Caroline Kerr (Butterhead lettuce and Swiss Chard)
What is Carlton? Also known as Komatsuna or Japanese mustard spinach, this leafy green vegetable is a fast-growing plant typically grown in Japan and Taiwan. “Komatsuna” is a Japanese phrase for “greens of Kamtsu”, a village near Tokyo where this plant was cultivated during the Edo Period (1603-1868). It is a drought and cold tolerant plant that matures in about 40 days, so it can be grown year-round. While it might appear to be an unfamiliar vegetable for some, it is a member of the Brassica family. This is the same plant species that produces turnips, bok choy, and Napa cabbage (which was featured on the blog recently!). Since it is a member of this family, it is not technically a spinach as its nickname might indicate. It can be used in a variety of ways including pickled, stir-fried with soy sauce, added to soups, or even eaten raw in salads. Its flavor is described as sweet, with a mild hint of mustard. Nutritionally, it is a great source of vitamin C, vitamin A, and calcium. 1 cup (chopped) will also provide about 4.2 grams of fiber. We encourage you all to try this out!
Here are some links to recipes that showcase this wonderful plant!
This is an extremely simple side dish that only takes a few
minutes to make! Not only are you going to get the nutrient benefits of the
carlton plant, but also the eggs. Eggs are a rich source of protein, selenium,
riboflavin, vitamin B12, fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K), folate, and omega-3
fatty acids (if pasteurized).
Another very simple, but different way to eat this veggie! Apple and banana will provide added benefits of fiber, vitamin C, and potassium. While ginger does not provide a lot in the way of vitamins and minerals, it has anti-inflammatory properties and adds a slight spicy flavor to this smoothie.
Butterhead lettuce is nutrient rich and high in vitamin A. Vitamin A helps maintain healthy eyes, skin, teeth, and bones. It also helps keep the immune system strong.
Swiss Chard is packed full of nutrients. It is a great source of vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, iron, and dietary fiber. These micronutrients are important for disease prevention. Vitamins are important for energy production and immune function, and minerals are important for growth and bone health.
The wet warm weather is making our beds inviting habitat for spring vegetables and all the other organisms that thrive off of them. Our soil is organically alive, so you can expect to see some chew marks on your turnips and maybe some free riding insects in your lettuce. We are washing the produce, but you might still encounter some mud in your bags. So, remember to wash your produce and store it immediately after the pick up; this will keep it fresh and ready to eat during the week.
What to do with your farm produce this week by intern Logan Wimsatt
Kohlrabi is a vegetable from the cabbage family that was originally bred in Germany. The leaves and the bulb of the Kohlrabi plant are edible and can be eaten raw. Kohlrabi can be stored in the fridge best with wet paper towels inside of a plastic bag. A fun fact about kohlrabi is that the leaves are hydrophobic meaning they repel water and when submerged in water the leaves have a metallic shine.
Also, if you still have Napa cabbage, here is a note and recipe that one of our CSA subscribers shared.
“The napa cabbage in our share was something new for me, and I was so pleased with a recipe I found I thought I would send it your way. I happened to have some scallops in the freezer, so this Rachel Ray recipe was perfect. “
Welcome to the start of the CSA season. Although the rest of the university has been working remotely, farm staff have been busy in the field for the past two months. The farm is bustling, however the heavy frost last week has slowed the growth of some of our early crops. As you can see from the produce list for this week and the tentative list for next week, we will be distributing spring greens and early season vegetables. Once it starts to warm up you can expect some new produce in your shares.
We also want to welcome our dietetics interns. The Institute for Food serves as an internship field site for the Master’s program in nutrition and dietetics. Over the course of the summer students in program will work on the farm and provide recipes and information about the produce you will receive each week. This is a wonderful opportunity for students to get hands-on experience learning about sustainable agriculture while sharing their knowledge about nutrition and healthy eating with our CSA subscribers.
What to do with your farm produce this week by intern Lauren Murray; photos courtesy of intern Logan Wimsatt
Napa cabbage is a new addition to the double share CSA this week! Napa cabbage is also referred to as Chinese cabbage, and it is derived from the Japanese word “nappa” meaning “leafy green.” Traditionally used in Asian cuisine, this crispy cabbage is tender when cooked, and it has a mild flavor that pairs well with the strength of onions and garlic. This hardy cabbage can withstand the cold, is easy to grow, and has been successfully grown and harvested on the International Space Station! To store cabbage safely, keep your cabbage in the fridge in the vegetable crisper drawer. Be aware that cabbage produces a pungent odor overtime, but they can last in the fridge for up to 3-4 weeks. Ensure that you thoroughly rinse your cabbage and remove the bottom stem prior to cooking. Enjoy this nutritious vegetable in stir fries, noodle dishes, or as a wrap for spring rolls.
Thank you for a great season! We appreciate all your support and hope you have a festive winter holiday. Don’t forget to stop by our pop-up holiday sale in the Armstrong Center atrium on Friday, December 6, to get farm gift boxes and bee posters. Spread the word to your friends as well.
Bring extra bags today. We will be distributing everything we have since this is the last pick-up of the season. Remember to return any cropboxes you might have hanging around; or you can drop them off at the farm. FYI the winter squash will keep for a long time on your kitchen counter or cabinet. This is a great week for stir fry.
Cook Field Pick-up, Thursday, Nov. 21, 3:30-5:30pm
Produce this week…
Kale (green curly)
Thanksgiving Week Produce–ON FARM PICK UP
Monday, November 25, 3:30-5:30pm.
Asian cabbage (baby)
We will be having a holiday sale on December 6 from 10am to 4pm in the Armstrong Student Center to celebrate a bountiful season. You can reserve a gift basket with Oxford Local salsa and marinara and garlic from the farm, or a bee poster celebrating Lorenzo Langstroth, “the father of American Bee Keeping,” at the CSA pick up this afternoon. These gifts will also be available at the On Farm Thanksgiving Pick Up on Monday, November 25.
Cook Field Pick-up, Thursday, Nov. 16, 3:30-5:30pm
Produce this week…
Tentative list of produce for Nov. 21
We just got a new batch of salsa and marinara sauce from our harvest this season. We will be selling our few remaining jars of salsa and marinara from last season at a discount. Bring cash or a check if you want to stock up. Also, Stephanie will be putting together some farm gift boxes for the holidays. We will be selling gift boxes and bee posters in Armstrong Center on Friday December 6 between 10am and 4pm in the atrium. Please spread the word.
What to do with your produce this week
From my perspective kohlrabi blends the earthiness of fall vegetables with the juicy crispness of apples. I like it peeled and sliced into matchsticks for a snack or to add to a salad. But, it can also be cooked. Here is a link from Kitchen.com that provides some alternative ways to cook kohlrabi. If you still have a butternut squash from last week, you might try the roasted kohlrabi and butternut squash.
4 medium kohlrabi (2 1/4 lb with greens or 1 3/4 lb without)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 1/2 lb butternut squash
Put oven rack just below middle position and put baking pan on rack, then preheat oven to 450°F. (If roasting vegetables along with turkey, preheat pan for 15 minutes while turkey roasts, then roast vegetables underneath turkey.)
Trim and peel kohlrabi, then cut into 3/4-inch pieces. Toss kohlrabi with 1 tablespoon oil, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper in a bowl. Transfer kohlrabi to preheated pan in oven and roast 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, peel butternut squash, then quarter lengthwise, seed, and cut into 3/4-inch pieces. Toss squash with remaining 1 tablespoon oil, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper in same bowl.
Stir kohlrabi, turning it, then push it to one side of pan.
Add squash to opposite side of pan and roast, stirring and turning squash over halfway through roasting, until vegetables are tender and lightly browned, about 30 minutes total (after squash is added). Toss vegetables to combine and transfer to a dish.
We have our row covers in place for the cold weather this week and we are planning for the final few pick ups this semester. To help you plan for Thanksgiving, here is a list of what we are planning to have for our on farm pick-up, Monday, November 25: beets, carrots, garlic, leeks, potatoes, white onions, winter squash, and sage.
What to do with your produce this week
Try this Kale Salad from Joshua McFadden.
1 bunch kale (thick ribs cut out)
½ garlic clove, finely chopped
¼ cup finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus more to finish
Extra-virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
1/8 teaspoon dried chile flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup dried breadcrumbs
1. Stack several kale leaves on top of one another and roll them up into a tight cylinder. With a sharp knife, slice crosswise into very thin ribbons, about 1/₁₆ inch wide (this is called a chiffonade). Put the kale in a salad spinner, rinse in cool water and spin until completely dry. Pile the kale into a bowl.
2. Put the chopped garlic on a cutting board and mince it even more until you have a paste (you can sort of smash and scrape the garlic with the side of the knife as well). Transfer the garlic to a small bowl, add ¼ cup pecorino, a healthy glug of olive oil, the lemon juice, chile flakes, ¼ teaspoon salt and plenty of twists of black pepper; whisk to combine.
3. Pour the dressing over the kale and toss well to thoroughly combine (you can use your clean hands for this, to be efficient). Taste and adjust with more lemon, salt, chile flakes or black pepper. Let the salad sit for about 5 minutes so the kale softens slightly. Top with the breadcrumbs, shower with more cheese, and drizzle with more oil.
Cook Field Pick-up, Thursday, Oct. 31, 3:30-5:30pm
Produce this week…
Sunflower heads (birds)
Winter squash (misc.)
Tentative produce list for November 7…
We are expecting a killing freeze tonight and into the weekend. The farm staff will be covering beds with row cover to protect produce not yet harvested. The change in weather is a signal that the end of the season is coming. We will still have things like kale, spinach, green onions, winter squash and potatoes in our final weeks of the CSA. But, be aware that as the weather changes, the list of produce each week could change dramatically.
Also, you may have started thinking about Thanksgiving. We will have an on farm pick up on Monday, November 25 from 3:30 to 5:30pm. This is tentatively the second to last CSA pick up of the season. For these final pick ups we will be offering all the produce that is still available.
What to do with your produce this week…
Roasted beets and radishes with goat cheese
3 cups beets, peeled and diced into bite sized pieces
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups radishes, sliced (save the leaves)
juice of 1 lime
1/4 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves, plus more for topping
1/4 cup chopped radish leaves, plus more for topping
2 ounces goat cheese, plus more for topping
Heat oven to 400 degrees.
In a medium-sized bowl, toss the beets with the olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.
Place on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes.
Toss the radishes in the same medium-sized bowl with 1/4 teaspoon of salt.
After the beets have cooked for 20 minutes, add the radishes to the baking sheet. Stir well to coat with olive oil and incorporate with the beets.
Roast for an additional 20 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes.
Remove from the oven, spritz the vegetables with lime juice and vinegar. Then add the cilantro and radish leaves. Stir.
Transfer the vegetables into the medium-sized bowl, add the goat cheese and stir to combine. Serve warm or at room temperature topped with additional leaves and goat cheese.