Notes from the Farm

There is always excitement when the tomatoes come in, and we were thrilled to be
able to include the early pickings in last week’s distribution. We’ll have more this week
and lots more on the way. As for cherry tomatoes, they are mostly green and not yet ready for harvest, but we just might be able to offer some along with green beans as part of the U-Pick on the farm this week. While tomatoes might steal the show, it is the cucumbers and summer squashes that continue to dominate our harvest time and cooler space. With a heavy harvest of cucumbers in hand, this is the time for making pickles, kimchi and relish if those are things you like to do. You’ll get a few pounds with your pickup this week, and if you want more for your preservation projects, be sure to email me or inquire when you come to the farm. Though the harvest of cukes, zucchini and summer squashes can last in to September, it can
also drop off fast in August when mildew often sets in, so enjoy them while we
have them.

If kohlrabi hasn’t already won your heart, I’m hoping this is the year. If you’ve
not encountered kohlrabi before it may not be clear exactly what it is, and you might be inclined to bring it straight to the exchange bin. Don’t do it! Take the kohlrabi home with you and you will be rewarded. This wunder-vegetable is a member of the brassica family, related to some of your other favorites such as kale, broccoli and salad turnips. The name Kohlrabi comes from the German for “cabbage turnip”,
and indeed kohlrabi resembles a turnip in its rounded appearance. The round bulb is really a young stem, which can be as crisp and juicy as an apple, although much less sweet, and the narrow leaves growing from the bulb are nearly identical to kale. The whole plant is edible, cooked or raw, with possible preparation methods including steaming, sauteeing and roasting. I most frequently use kohlrabi raw in
salads and slaws, and often include them in krauts and pickles. If you’re not
inspired by any of those kohlrabi ideas hopefully you’ll at least be impressed by
the silver glow it has when you dunk the kohlrabi under water. Don’t believe it
glows? You’ll have to bring it home and try for yourself. Enjoy!
Best,
Farmer Steve and our Farmers: Adam, Alyssa, Dan, Jalyn, Kelsey, Nikki, Sara, Shannon,
TW and Tyler

In This Week’s Distribution

Our Harvest: Tomato, Kohlrabi, Beets, Mixed Zucchini and Yellow Squash, Cucumber,
Lettuce, Kale, Scallions
U-Pick: Green Beans, maybe a few Cherry Tomatoes
Fruit Option: ‘Garnet Beauty’ Peaches

Know Your Farmers

There are many reasons why you might have signed up for our CSA this year, one of
which might be that you want to know more about your food, including where it comes
from, how it is grown, and who is growing it. Put simply, you want to know your
food and know your farmer. We have an incredible team of farmers here working
to bring you a bounty of fresh, organic, delicious produce, and over the course
of this CSA season, we’ll include a note about someone from the farm staff so that
you can get to know your farmers.
My name is Jalyn Johnson. I’m 17 years old and I recently graduated from Common Ground High School. In the fall I will attend University of Connecticut Storrs campus as an Environmental Studies major in hopes of becoming a lawyer. When people ask “why do you like to farm?” I always refer to my junior year when one of my classes
read an excerpt from An Omnivores Dilemma by Michael Pollan. The excerpt made me want to involve myself with the food I eat and become more aware of where it comes from. In the future I hope to own a urban farm with a mission to educate people on how to eat healthy and have it still taste good. To start my process for my farm
and it’s mission I created a Soul Food cookbook for my senior project to show readers you can still have your health without losing the Soul. Here are my two favorite
recipes:
Oven-Fried Chicken SERVES 10
Ingredients
* 12 chicken thighs
* 3 eggs
* 1 cup all-purpose flour
* 1 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
* Salt and pepper to taste
* 1 teaspoon paprika
* ½ cup vegetable oil
Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. Place flour in a shallow plate or bowl and season with salt and
pepper to taste. Put the breadcrumbs in another shallow plate
or bowl and beat the eggs in another bowl.
3. Dredge the chicken piece by piece in the flour, then the egg,
then the breadcrumbs, until all pieces are coated. Pour the oil
into a 9×13 inch baking dish. Add the chicken to the dish and
sprinkle with paprika to taste. Bake in the preheated oven for 30
minutes, then turn pieces over and bake for another 30 minutes.
Remove from oven and drain on paper towels.

Candied Yams SERVES 4
Ingredients
2 large uncooked sweet potato(es), about 2 lbs, peeled, halved lengthwise and cut
crosswise into 2-inch thick pieces
1/4 cup unsweetened orange juice
2 Tbsp packed light brown sugar
2 Tbsp maple syrup
1 Tbsp reduced-calorie margarine, melted
½ tsp table salt
Directions
1. Preheat oven to 375ºF.
2. Place sweet potatoes in a large saucepan and pour in enough water to cover potatoes.
Set pan over high heat and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium and simmer 10
minutes, until potatoes are fork-tender. Drain potatoes and arrange them in a single
layer in bottom of a shallow baking dish.
3. Whisk together juice, sugar, syrup, margarine and salt; pour mixture over sweet
potatoes.
4. Bake for 30 minutes, then stir to coat potatoes with liquid and bake for 15 minutes
more, until sauce is thick and bubbly. Stir once again before serving. Yields about
1 cup per serving.

Recipes and Cooking Tips

Cucumber Kimchi Bites
adapted from thekitchn.com
1 1/2 pounds cucumbers
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
2 teaspoons grated garlic
1 teaspoon grated ginger
1 to 2 tablespoons Korean pepper flakes (gochugaru) or crushed red pepper flakes;
1 teaspoon sugar
4 ounces radish or daikon, peeled and julienned
2 ounces sliced chives or scallions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
Sesame seeds for serving (optional)
Wash the cucumbers and pat them dry. Trim and discard the ends. Cut the cucumbers
in half for Kirbys or into about 4 pieces for longer Korean cucumbers (each piece
should be about 2 to 3 inches long). Stand each piece upright on a cutting board,
then slice it in quarters, leaving about 1/2 inch intact at the bottom end. Place
the cucumbers cut-side up in a large dish and evenly sprinkle 1 tablespoon of salt
over them. Let stand for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the filling. Combine the remaining 1 teaspoon of salt, garlic, ginger,
red pepper flakes, and sugar together in a bowl to make a thick paste. Using your
hands, mix in the radish and chives or scallions and thoroughly coat them with the
paste. (You may want to wear gloves to protect your hands.)
Drain the cucumbers and pat them dry. Stuff each cucumber with the filling, making
sure to fill each crevice while being careful not to break the cucumber apart.
The cucumbers may be served immediately, chilled first, or fermented and then chilled
(recommended). For fermented cucumbers, nestle the cucumbers together in a very
clean jar or another container. Cover tightly and let stand at room temperature
for 1 to 24 hours. Transfer to the refrigerator and eat within one week. Serve as
is or sprinkle sesame seeds on top.

Kohlrabi, Apple, Beet Salad
adapted from ottolenghi.co.uk
2 large kohlrabi
3 apples
2 medium beets (tops removed)
1 bunch cilantro or parsley, roughly chopped, plus extra for garnish
1 garlic clove, crushed
55ml cider or white wine vinegar
50ml extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Method:
Peel the kohlrabi, cut in half and slice thinly. Core the apples and slice to the
same thickness. Peel the beet roots and grate coarsely on a cheese grater or shred
on a mandolin.
Mix together all the vegetables in a large bowl, then add the rest of the ingredients.
Stir well, taste and season – you can afford to be generous with the salt. Pile
up on a serving plate and garnish with extra chopped coriander.

Natural-Fermented Kohlrabi and Beet Pickles
This brine would work for any number of vegetables. The principle is all that’s
necessary.
Adapted from A Platter of Figs by David Tanis
For the brine:

* 2 garlic cloves, sliced
* 1 sprig thyme
* 1/2 teaspoon dried Greek or regular oregano
* 1 bay leaf
* 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
* 2 teaspoons turmeric (omit if using beets)
* 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
* 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
* 2 tablespoons salt
* 2 cups water
* 1/2 cup cider vinegar
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 pound peeled root vegetables such as kohlrabi, beets, turnip, cut into matchsticks
or small wedges
Combine the brine ingredients in a bowl and stir to dissolve. Pack the vegetables
into a jar and cover completely with the brine mixture. Put in a plate on a shelf
in the kitchen (in case it leaks while upside down) and turn over once a day for
a week.
Refrigerate the pickles. They will keep for a month. Serve with charcuterie, in
a sandwich, or all on their own.

Open Farm Days This Week

This Tuesday from 2:30-5:30pm we’ll be hosting our signature Open Farm Days in the
Learning Garden, adjacent to the big red Dairy Barn. This is an experiential learning
opportunity for kids in the garden. During these drop-in sessions, kids can experience a little of what it means to be a farmer – watering and weeding, harvesting vegetables, exploring bugs, digging in the dig bed, tasting herbs or planting new things!
This week we’ll be harvesting, summer squash, kale, replanting lettuce and some flowers. We’ll be squashing squash bugs, sampling purse lane and maybe even some sorrel.
Not limited to any specific age, all kids are welcome. Be sure to look for the announcement board at the garden entrance to see what’s happening. Open Farm Days alternate Tuesdays
& Fridays from 2:30-5:30pm throughout the summer.
Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Friday, August 4, 2017
Break for Summer Camp
Tuesday, August 22, 2017
Friday, September 1, 2017

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