Tuesday, October 10, 2017

BGF News - October 10, 2017-Vol. XXXIII, No.18

In this week’s box:

Cabbage: Super Red or Golden Acre
Garlic: Northern White
Head Lettuce bouquets
Summer Squash: asst.
Sweet Peppers: asst.
Tomatoes: asst.
Turnips: Hakurei
And perhaps one of the following:     
Broccoli: Belstar or Gypsy
Cucumber: Lemon
Okra: Bowling Red
Spinach Mix
For those with the Egg option [full & half shares]: one dozen free-range eggs (assorted colors)
For those with the Herb option: sweet basil, rosemary, salad burnet
Featured Recipes:  ** indicates a BGF favorite 
Cabbage and Fennel Saute
Roasted Haruki Turnips with Israeli Couscous Salad
Swiss Chard, Fennel & White Bean Gratin

What’s up on the farm?

Precipitation in the past week:  3.88" and counting
Well, it has been a rather eventful week for the BGF folks. Not too many hours after last week's delivery Jill was in emergency surgery for a twisted colon at our area hospital and spent the next five days receiving their excellent care and attention. Sean, the crew and Jill's family all rallied to get all the things taken care of at the hospital and on the farm amid the rain and general excitement. We can't thank everyone enough for all their support and kindness. This begins a new chapter for the farm as Jill is now on "no lifting" restrictions for the next 6 weeks. So what does that mean for CSA members? Likely nothing other than seeing different faces at the final three deliveries of the season. We hope you enjoy the diversity, we wouldn't any of us to get bored.
There are other big changes happening around the farm as well, the summer crops are truly wrapping up with the persistent cooler weather. This is likely the final week for summer squash and possibly for tomatoes as well. We hope to get in at least one more delivery of basil so you can bulk up your winter pesto stock. But never fear, there are fresh crops of radishes, broccoli, napa cabbage, kohlrabi and more still to come!
Upcoming events:

Final Summer CSA delivery:
Our final delivery of the 2017 summer season will be Tuesday, October 24th

VegEmail sales begin: Tuesday, November 7th

A little detail on your produce this week:

Broccoli: Wrap broccoli loosely in a plastic bag and keep it in the vegetable bin of your refrigerator for up to a week. Immediately before cooking, soak broccoli, head down, in cold, salted water (1 teaspoon salt to a 8 cups of water) for 5 minutes. Any [organic] critters will float to the top where you can rescue them or allow them to suffer a salty death. (Note: If you soak broccoli in salt water before storing, it will become too rubbery and wilted to enjoy.) Slice the juicy, edible stems and use them wherever florets are called for. Peel particularly thick skin before using.


Fennel: Cut off the stalks where they emerge from the bulb. To use the feathery foliage as an herb, place the dry stalks upright in a glass filled with two inches of water, cover the glass loosely with a plastic bag, and store in the refrigerator for up to five days. The unwashed bulb will keep in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for at least a week. To use: Remove any damaged spots or layers. Cut the bulb in half lengthwise and check the inner core. If it’s tough, remove it with a paring knife. Fennel should be washed carefully, because dirt can lodge between the layers of the bulb. Chop or mince the leaves.


Okra: These lovely, dark red, horn-shaped vegetables are a warm weather treat. Extremely cold sensitive, store in their plastic bag in the warmest part of your fridge, or place the plastic bag in a small paper sack and store in the crisper drawer and use within the week. Traditional southerners will cut into rounds, bread in cornmeal and fry, but our favorite version is our dear friend Annie's method, "All I do is rinse off the pods and lay them in a saucepan with a little water in the bottom. Ten to fifteen minutes is all it takes...twenty if the pods are really big and "woody" feeling. I put salt on them and eat as finger food. It reminds me of young sweet corn."

Peppers: Place whole, unwashed peppers in a plastic bag, seal, and refrigerate for a week or more. Rinse peppers just before use. For sweet peppers, cut around the stem with a small knife and lift out the core. Slice down the side to open it up and then cut out the inner membranes. Store unused portions in a sealed bag or container in the refrigerator.

Turnips: keep best if separated from their greens.  Greens are stored in a plastic bag and can be cooked like mustard or collard greens (you can add them in with your Braising Greens Mix).  Trimmed roots can go into a lidded container or zip-close bag. These aren't your grandma's turnips. These are a sweet, Japanese salad variety that is particularly tasty for fresh eating. They will still work great in cooked dishes, but we love to eat them raw, often right out of hand, like an apple. One of the farm crew's favorite mid-field snacks.
A few other details: 

All of your GREENS will keep best if stored in a plastic bag, with the top folded over and placed in the produce drawer of your refrigerator.  

* NOTE: You will notice over the course of the season that some box contents listed above say "Perhaps one of the following..."  These are items that we can’t harvest in sufficient quantities for the whole CSA to receive at one time.  We do track who gets what and we will do our best to ensure that everyone eventually receives each item.  On some items this may take several weeks, so please be patient.

Is a weekly newsletter not enough for you and you want to read more about our daily adventures or see pictures of the farm?  Follow us on Facebook at Blue Gate Farm and/or share your recipes, experiences and questions with other BGF members at Blue Gate Farm Community.

That’s about it this week, if you have any questions or comments be sure to let us know. 

Best from the farm,
Jill & Sean (and Blue, Luci & Indigo)

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