Keep farming, feed people, build community
July 24, 2023
Notes From the Farm
We have a colorful mix of tomatoes of all different sizes coming ready this week, and we’ll harvest some green tomatoes too if needed, so that we can distribute tomatoes to everyone for sure. Green tomatoes can be used as is or left to ripen on your counter. The first eggplant and peppers will be harvested as well, plus more summer squash, cucumbers and mixed greens.
I am feeling grateful for the harvest in hand as it has been a wild climate month across the northeast and an erratic climate season thus far, with many farms experiencing significant losses. The weeks of heavy storms have caused waterlogged soils in the best cases, and flooding disasters in the worst cases. Since Massaro is on top of a hill we are not likely to be flooded, but with continual and extreme storms, our crops certainly can be impacted. When soils are over-saturated, water fills all the pore space, which results in a lack of oxygen for plant roots. This will slow growth, diminish nutrient uptake, delay flower and fruit development, kill off tap roots in plants like carrots, or potentially drown out established plants entirely. Weeds and moisture related diseases can be extra challenging in these conditions, and new plantings or sowings can be washed out before getting established. Though we can’t control the conditions, we can be prepared, we can be flexible and we can adapt. Know that our farm and farming practices are designed to improve climate for the future and mitigate the climate challenges we are experiencing now, whether it be a drought like we had last summer, or a stretch of excessive rain like we’ve been having recently. We’re doing our best to handle whatever comes to us, and we’re savoring the harvest we bring in. We hope you are as well.
This week on Tuesday and Friday, July 25 and 28 the Woodbridge 4-H Club will be in the Learning Garden with information about native bees and Pollinator Pathways. On Tuesday they will show how to build a bee bath and nesting house for native solitary bees. On Friday there will be a pollinator and native plant scavenger hunt and other pollinator related activities. Free. Drop in any time between 2:30-6:30.
Join us on the farm next Tuesday, August 1 for a pizza party at the learning garden pavilion. This will be the beginning of our final push on our capital campaign to finish the pavilion and unlock the $15,000 match from Sustainable CT. Hope to see you there!
-Farmer Steve and our Farmers: Alyssa, Alanna, Bella, Cass, Faith, Kate, Kayla, Leah, Maddie, Morrigan, MC
Donate to Help Finish the Pavilion
If you prefer to give offline by cash or check please make payments to Massaro Community Farm and drop off or mail to 41 Ford Rd., Woodbridge, CT 06525.
For questions please contact Lindsay at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the farm office at 203-736-8618
This Week’s Anticipated Harvest:
Red & Green Tomatoes, Eggplant, Shishito Peppers, Zucchini, Summer Squash, Cucumbers, Lettuce, Kale, Chard, Basil
Cherry tomatoes, string beans herbs
Big Green Truck Pizza
Big Green Truck Pizza will be at the farm from 3-6pm on Tuesdays once per month:
- Tuesday, August 1
- Tuesday, September 5
- Tuesday, October 3
They’ll be parked in the parking area, making a variety of their favorite pies for you to choose from. Payment can be made to Big Green Truck here with cash, venmo, or paypal.
Our flower CSA began last week and we have a few spots still available. Send an email to email@example.com to reserve your flower CSA or sign up at the farm. Bunches will vary week to week.
Limited availability; farm pickup only (Tuesday or Friday), $15/week. End date Friday, October 6.
CSA parking area/pickup images
See images below for an overhead view of the pickup areas at Massaro and at District.
Dinner on the Farm
Sunday, September 10, 4pm
ZINC is back to prepare a spectacular seasonal feast for our annual Dinner on the Farm. Join us on Sunday, September 10th for our unique farm-to-table event, which brings people together for a fabulous family-style meal in a wonderful setting. Funds raised through ticket sales, sponsorships and silent auction help support our fresh produce donations to health, human service and hunger relief agencies, as well as our farm education programs. Click the link below to purchase tickets and see our sponsorships opportunities.
Purchase Tickets or Sponsor Dinner on the Farm
Recipes and Cooking Ideas
Blistered Shishito Peppers
- 8ounces shishito peppers
- 1tablespoon neutral oil (such as vegetable or grapeseed)
- Flaky salt
- In a large bowl, toss the peppers with the oil. Heat a large (12-inch) cast-iron skillet over high until a drop of water smokes on the surface, 2 to 3 minutes. (You may want to turn on your vent, too.)
- Add the peppers in a single layer and cook, without touching, until blistered underneath, 3 to 4 minutes. Flip and cook until blistered in spots, puffed, and tender, another 1 to 2 minutes. Season with flaky salt and serve right away.
Simple Zucchini Basil Pasta
- 1 pound pasta, any cut works
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3-4 medium zucchini/yellow summer squash, shredded or chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
- chili flakes
- kosher salt and black pepper
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 1 cup grated parmesan
- 1/2 cup grated pecorino or manchego cheese
- 1 cup fresh basil, chopped
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to package directions until al dente. Just before draining, reserve 1 1/4 cups of the pasta cooking water. Drain.
- Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the zucchini, garlic, thyme, chili flakes, salt, and pepper. Cook until the zucchini is golden, 5 minutes. Mix in the butter. Using the back of your spoon or a potato masher, mash down the zucchini until it becomes a chunky sauce.
- Add 1 cup of reserved pasta water and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add the pasta, parmesan, and pecorino, and toss until melted. Add more pasta water if need to thin the sauce. Remove from the heat, toss in the basil.
- Serve topped with fresh basil and pepper. Enjoy!
*If a smooth sauce is desired, transfer the zucchini to a food processor before adding the pasta and puree until smooth.
CSA Pickup Instructions and Reminders
Balancing Tuesday and Friday CSA pickup: Quite a few more people who have chosen Tuesday than Friday for on-farm CSA pickup. If you are willing and able to switch to Fridays, please let us know, as that will help us balance the days and reduce traffic.
A request for 10-week Flexible/Half CSA subscribers:
Please send your pickup plan in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org if you haven’t already. The majority thus far have chosen to begin picking up Week 1 and doing alternating weeks from there. If you haven’t yet sent your plan in, you can help balance out our harvest days and limit crowding by starting with Week 2. We generally suggest picking up every other week, beginning either week 1 or 2, but the plan is flexible to allow you to choose any 10 weeks you would like. Please send us your plan now.
Reminder emails from GrownBy: GrownBy sends reminder emails ahead of your CSA pickup day each week for our 20-week subscribers, and uses a default of picking up alternating weeks, beginning with either week 1 or 2 for our 10-week subscribers. We know that many people switch pickup days as needed, and have a different pickup plan than the alternating weeks. As a result, you may receive some reminder emails that don’t match with your pickup plan or changes. Know that we are working with GrownBy to make adjustments to the auto reminder emails. Thank you for your continued patience and understanding on this.
On-Farm Pickups – Tuesdays 2:30-6:30pm; Fridays 12:30-5:30pm
- Come on in to the big red barn: Park in the parking area on the north side of the barn, walk down the steps and and enter the barn through the east barn door entry. Our harvest will be set out in bins with instructions for you to select and bag your own produce. Staff and/or volunteers will be there to help you as needed. Please bring your own bag or box.
- Please note that we will no longer be offering the drive thru pick up option. We will make up a few bags in advance for a quick pickup option for those who might need it.
- There is a handicap parking spot and an additional accessible spot next to the entry/exit on the south side of the barn.
- ALWAYS DRIVE SLOWLY at the farm – there is often programming here for kids, and the farm family with young children live here.
- When U-Pick crops are available, we recommend doing U-Pick first, then picking up your CSA when you are done. See map.
Delivery to District – Wednesdays, 3:30-7:30pm
- Located at 470 James St. at State St.
- Go to Door 004 for District Athletic Club (see map).
- CSA boxes will be stacked through the door and down the hall in the gym kitchen area.
- Pick up time is 3:30-7:30pm on Wednesdays.
- Take only one box of produce unless otherwise indicated, all boxes will be the same. Return your box each week and pick up a new one.
Egg CSA Subscriptions – a few more are still available
- Pickup along with your vegetables on your regular pickup day and location.
- Massaro Farm Egg cartons can be returned to us as long as they are in good, clean condition.
Fruit Option – a few more are still available
- Comes from High Hill Orchard in Meriden.
- Typically begins in early July once blueberries are ready to harvest.
- Pickup along with your vegetables on your regular pickup day and location.
Farm Store – for on-farm pick up only; not available for New Haven delivery
- Our eggs, honey and tomato products will be available each week as long as we have them. Purchase at pickup along with your produce.
- Products from our partner farms and local vendors may be available as well.
Communications: We send out a weekly CSA newsletter during the harvest season, and additional messages throughout the year. Please read them. There is often helpful information in them, or important updates that might answer questions you have. We also share news, stories and photos on facebook and instagram.
If you have a question, request, feedback, or need to be in touch for any reason, emailing us at email@example.com is the best means of communication. This email is checked regularly, and we do our best to respond quickly. We’d love to talk with you when you are here on the farm and we can usually be found around the barn during CSA pickup hours, so grab our ears, pick our brains, chat us up or tell us what’s on your mind!
Bags: Please bring a reusable bag or box to take your produce home in. We will have compostable bags available for you if needed.
What if I miss a week?: If you are not able to make it to the farm to pick up your produce on a given week, you are welcome to have someone else pick up it up for you. Simply have them come to the farm or District on your behalf. Any produce that is not picked up will be donated, so know that it is put to good use! If you do miss a week, please understand that you are not entitled to additional produce on another week.
Produce Donations: Part of the farm’s mission and commitment to the community is to donate produce to local hunger relief organizations, which is more important than ever right now. To make this happen, we harvest additional produce for donation on CSA distribution days. Any produce not picked up by our CSA members is added to that donation. Thus, if you can’t make it one week to get your vegetables, know that your produce will go to people in need and is never wasted.
Want more of our produce?: As our harvest allows, we will offer additional produce for sale at the farm. If you don’t see something you want available in the store, please do let us know when you are here and we’ll see if we can offer it. We will be at the Q House market at 197 Dixwell Ave in New Have on Wednesday afternoons from 3-6pm and some weekend markets again beginning in late July.
Payment plans, and final payments: If you signed up through GrownBy for weekly or monthly payment plans, your card will be charged automatically. Please make sure your card is up to date. If you paid by check and you still have a balance for the CSA, please send in your final payments, or email your payment plan to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
(203) 736-861841 Ford Road, Woodbridge, CT