Notes from the Farm

How can it possibly be the final week of the CSA?!  It is hard to believe, but somehow we have arrived at the end of October with a chill in the air, Halloween nearly upon us, and the last CSA distributions of the year.  It has been a great growing year in many ways, with a harvest to be proud of and enjoyed.  Of course, like every year, this one has not been without challenges, with drought and high summer heat serving as the main issues for growers throughout the state and the region.  We brought in a steady bounty each week nonetheless, and will finish off the season with a heavy and colorful mix of crops: purple bok choi, orange carrots, green tomatoes and peppers, red lettuce, pink eggplant and more.  Be sure to savor this week’s haul, as the next distribution is planned for June 2017!

Though this is the final week of the CSA, there are so many ways to stay in touch and keep enjoying our produce.  First of all, the farm isn’t going anywhere of course, and you are welcome to come here, walk the trails and say hi to the chickens –  they will be happy to see you, as will the farmers!  Next, you can find us each week at the farmers’ markets with greens, roots and jars of sauce and salsa on Sunday mornings at Edgewood Park as usual, and Saturday mornings at Wooster Square starting the first weekend in November.  We’ll also have a special pre-Thanksgiving farm stand open here at the farm on Saturday, November 19. More details about that coming soon.

CSA Survey: We often chat when we see you here on the farm and would love to hear more feedback from you in our Survey.  We do hope you had a great experience with our CSA this year, and want you to join us again next year as well.

2017 CSA Sign Up: Right now you have an exclusive signup period for our 2017 CSA before we open up sales to the public in November.  You can print out the 2017 CSA Registration Form and drop it off over the next two weeks, mail it in, or simply sign up on-line.  We are offering a discount on the price if you pay in full by December 1, and if you pay in full before the end this year’s CSA, we’ll also give you free jar of our Crushed Tomatoes!  We are offering you this to thank you for the commitment you have made to your community farm, and because it is extremely helpful to us when you sign up early for the CSA.  When you sign up early for our CSA it allows us to focus on the farm in the spring having already completed a heavy load of marketing, paperwork and administrative tasks over the winter months.  With that in mind, in the weeks ahead please consider making a deposit, full payment or payment of any amount towards next year’s CSA.

Thank you so much for taking part in our CSA this year.   Your support helps keep this organic farm growing in your community.  We will miss seeing you each week for pickup, but hope to connect throughout the fall and winter before we start again in 2017!

Best,

Farmer Steve and our Farmers: Alyssa, Tyler, Ed, Briana, Adam, Kelly, Ariana, Jon,  Nikki, and Jess

In This Week’s Distribution

Our Harvest:  Kale, Chard, Beets, Carrots, Purple Bok Choi, Lettuce, Green Tomatoes, Green Peppers, Hot Peppers, Eggplant, Salad Greens
U-Pick: Closed for the season

Fruit Option:  Finished for the season

 

Recipes and Cooking Tips

Four Ways to Pickled Green Tomatoes 

adapted from www.gardenbetty.com
Makes 1 quart

Ingredients

For every quart jar, you will need approximately 1 1/2 pounds of green tomatoes.


For the Brine

1 cup white distilled vinegar (5% acidity)
1 cup water
1 tablespoon kosher salt


Basic Pickling Spice

1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
1 teaspoon celery seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon whole allspice


Dilly Garlicky Pickling Spice

2 teaspoons dill seeds
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
4 cloves garlic, peeled


Hot ‘n Spicy Pickling Spice

1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon Szechuan peppercorns *
1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes


Curried Pickling Spice **

1 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon whole allspice
3/4 inch fresh ginger root, sliced into thin coins
Method
Wash, dry, and slice tomatoes in halves or quarters.

In a saucepan, bring all the brine ingredients to a gentle boil.

Fill a hot, clean quart jar with the pickling spice mix of your choice. Funnel in the tomato halves and pack the jar tightly.

 

Pour the hot brine over the tomatoes, covering them completely and leaving 1/2-inch headspace. Stick a chopstick into the jar and move it around to release any trapped air bubbles (a process called “bubbling”).

 

Bubble the jars with a chopstick to release trapped air bubbles
Wipe the rim clean, seal with a lid and band, and process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes (adjust time for altitude as needed).
Store the jar in a cool, dark place. The green tomatoes will be perfectly pickled in about three weeks. Add to sandwiches, hot dogs, burgers, steaks, potatoes, or anywhere you would normally use relish. For a unique kick, you can even top off a Bloody Mary or dirty martini with a pickled green tomato garnish!

* Szechuan peppercorns can be found at well-stocked Chinese or Vietnamese supermarkets in the spice aisle.

** When making curried and pickled green tomatoes, bring the brine ingredients, curry powder, and brown sugar to a boil. Stir until the spices dissolve completely. Fill a hot, clean quart jar with cumin seeds, whole allspice, and ginger coins; pack jar with tomatoes; then pour the hot brine mixture over the tomatoes.

 

 

 

 

 

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