Sogn Valley Farm CSA Newsletter Week 4 | June 26-27, 2018
What's In The Box
Cucumbers: These slicing cukes came from a planting in our caterpillar tunnel. They're trellised vertically, which requires more labor but generally results in straighter, higher quality fruit. So far, we're happy with it. Enjoy these on your salad, sandwich, or dip in some basil pesto.
Broccoli: We're finding Anneli to be a broccoli-lover. Phew - we can keep her. She's been gobbling up steamed and pureed broccoli lately. Due to lots of variability in temps over the last week, some of the heads are showing some unevenness in bead development. Fully tasty, just maybe not art pieces. For a nerdy overview of broccoli development and factors affecting appearance of heads, check out this newsletter from last year.
Green kale: A versatile and nutritious leafy vegetable. People ask us what dishes we use kale in...we respond, “what dishes don’t we put kale in?!” Add it to eggs, stir fries, soups, or raw in a massaged kale salad.
Basil: I love that basil is typically ready for harvest around the same time as garlic scapes, because the two make magic when mixed together in a food processor. See the link in the garlic scape description below. Last week's rain splashed some soil onto the basil, which we don't wash because it can damage leaves and reduce shelf life. Rinse before using.
Head lettuce or salad mix: That spring “glut” (in the best sense of the word) of lettuce has been doled out to CSA and farmer's market customers, and subsequent plantings aren't quite ready. Most of you are getting green leaf lettuce, with some receiving salad mix or red
Garlic scapes: Oh, garlic scapes, my favorite form of garlic. Scapes are the developing flower stalk of hardneck garlic plants. They can be chopped up and added to anything you would add garlic to. Another easy way to use them is just blend them up with a little oil, then put it in the fridge. Scoop a little into any dish you want to make garlicky. Also, check out this garlic scape pesto recipe from a 2017 newsletter.
Kohlrabi: This funny looking vegetable, closely related to broccoli, has crisp, apple-like texture and a hint of sweetness (fall-harvested kohlrabi is sweeter). The outer rind is fibrous — which protects it for long-term storage — so you may want to peel it first if you're
adding it to a salad or grating it into a kohl-slaw. For snacking, we like to slice and quarter it, then eat up to the rind. The leaves are edible, too — cook a little longer than you would kale. Featured in this week's recipe.
Spinach: This is probably the end of the spring spinach. You should see more starting in mid-late September. Persistent rain last week brought on a touch of foliar damage, which we did our best to sort out during harvest.
Sugar snap peas (full shares only): This is the last of the peas from our early transplanted snap pea crop. Last week wasn't good to peas. Due to several inches of rain, the sugars got diluted a bit, so they may not be quite as sweet as you would expect. The prolonged moisture also caused some disease and a premature end to harvest of the planting.
Hopefully the next succession will fare better.
Each week, we’ll give some hints about what new items may show up CSA shares in the next 1 -2 weeks. Please note, this is not a guarantee, but our attempt to give you an idea of what’s coming up.
Beets – Carrots – Snow peas – Cabbage – Zucchini – Fennel – Sweet onions
Word of the week? Rain. Last week delivered us about three inches of rain. It started out welcomed, watering in some seeds and plants we had gotten in the ground the previous week. But it kept coming and kept our plants and soil wet for about 10 days.
This has implications for a number of things. First, it prevents us from planting, an activity which requires tractor work for both bed preparation and the planting, itself. As a result, we lost a succession of salad mix and ended up having to plant out two successions of broccoli at once.
Second, it prevents cultivating and weeding. Weeds that are just newly germinated and easy to kill can grow to a more competitive and harder-to-kill size of 4-6 inches after 10 days of warm, rainy weather. We'll have to spend dozens of labor hours handweeding something that could have been done in just a few hours cultivating with a tractor.
Third, prolonged wet weather favors many diseases that affect our crops. We're particularly worried about black rot on brassica crops (cabbage, kale, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower, in particular), along with diseases of tomatoes, cucumbers, and melons. It looks like we
have mostly dry weather coming over the next 10 days, so hopefully the plants will fight off any pathogens trying to take hold. We did get our first dry window on Sunday, which I spent preparing beds for planting. Then, after harvesting for CSA on Monday morning, we spend Monday afternoon transplanting, saving all the washing and packing of CSA shares for this rainy Tuesday.
If you look at the on-deck list for the next two boxes, you'll see a slew of new crops coming into maturity soon. We're excited to start picking some new veggies for you!
I'm afraid the remaining employee bios will have to wait until next week. 'Twas a busy weekend for Aaron and we decided to hold off until next week.
Have a great week!
This is good starting point for someone new to, and perhaps skeptical of, kohlrabi.
2 tablespoons breadcrumbs, divided
3 medium or two large kohlrabis, peeled and cut into ¼-inch-thick rounds
1 tablespoon melted butter
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Butter an 8-inch round pan and dust with ½ tablespoon of the breadcrumbs.
3. In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the kohlrabi slices until they become just tender, about 7 minutes; drain. Toss with the melted butter.
4. Place the kohlrabi in the prepared pan, and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, the remaining breadcrumbs, and pepper.
5. Bake for about 1 hour, or until browned.
Barbara Hunt, mother of Margaret Trott, Featherstone Farm CSA member
Recipe source: Bounty from the Box: The CSA Farm Cookbook, by Mi Ae Lipe