6 ears of sweet corn (1st of the season!), 1 pint of blueberries, a dozen apple fritters, 6 large soft pretzels, 4 vegetable samosas, 1 Amish donut (filled with homemade Nutella), 1 bag of kettle corn, 1 bag of vegan cheddar popcorn, 2 bouquets of flowers (pink snapdragons & black sweet peas), and a small piece of cheese (Graskaas seasonal).
That is what we returned home from market with on Saturday. Plus 4 beautifully decorated mini-cupcakes from 1 of our favourite customers (they didn’t make it home) and 2 homemade breakfast sandwiches from another customer which he makes and delivers to us – hot – every Saturday!
Now please don’t think we always come home with that many goodies. But this past Saturday was a rainy market day. And rainy market days are different. Business is slower so we have more time to visit with other vendors (at a distance of course). Less customers mean less sales, so many vendors are eager to share or trade with each other rather than take so much product home. So that’s why we were loaded down with such great stuff. Some we purchased but lots we traded for. It makes a wet, slow market day less depressing and lots more fun!
I think our market stall looked bright & beautiful, especially on such a dreary day!
While we mostly had clouds & drizzle at market, it really rained hard at the farm. And that is a good thing! The blackberries are starting to turn colour and all this moisture will ensure large, plump & juicy berries. Tomatoes, eggplant, peppers – most of the vegetables actually – also appreciate the added water. There is some spoilage (rot, mildew, rust) showing up already in the zucchini, lettuce, beans, but overall the rain was a welcome bonus.
Plus we ate really well this weekend!
What’s in the box?
Green beans, fresh garlic, baby fennel, tomatoes,
onions, zucchini, beets, baby kale.
extras – kohlrabi, garlic scapes.
We have seeded green beans 9 times already this season – every Wednesday since May 19 – and we’ll seed them 3 or 4 more times. So we should have plenty of beans – starting this week! You probably don’t need any recipes or tips on how to cook beans, but Katherine at http://www.cookwithwhatyouhave.com has at least 20 recipes with green beans in case you’re looking for something new. (A subscription to this website is part of your CSA. Please email the farm if you need your access key to get into the site.)
Fresh garlic has wonderful strong, pungent garlic flavour – much stronger than the garlic scapes you have been receiving in your box. Because it has just been pulled and is not dry, it should be kept at room temperature, and in a place with good air circulation. You can leave it there and it will slowly cure & dry. Or enjoy it right away in your cooking, but know that once the bulb is broken open, it should be stored in the fridge and used within a few days. Enjoy!
Baby fennel is a less familiar vegetable to many. It has a beautiful anise or licorice flavour and is wonderful shaved into salads or sliced on a vegetable tray. Roasting or sauteing fennel results in a milder and very delicious flavour. Again, http://www.cookwithwhatyouhave.com has many recipes and tips for how to use fennel. Check out Simple fennel salad with lemon or Stewed fennel, onion & tomato.
Why baby fennel instead of big, round, fat, fennel? Mostly because it’s so beautiful now that we can’t wait! And the hot weather we’ve been having could send it to seed quickly, so we’ll eat it and enjoy these young, small, tender bulbs now.
We have been sneaking tomatoes into CSA boxes as they have been available in the last week or two. Now there should be enough for everyone this week – mostly cherry and smaller tomatoes in a range of colours. The large, red beeksteak tomatoes are plentiful on the plants – but showing no signs of ripening yet.
Onions, zucchini, beets, and baby kale complete the box this week.
Some CSA members are already turning down the zucchini – which is fine. That’s why we let you choose your own. We offer both yellow & green zucchini and also patty pan – the yellow-space-ship-shaped summer squash (it has similar taste & texture as zucchini) – in a variety of sizes. Choose small & tender ones for eating raw. Slice bigger ones, brush with oil, and grill on the BBQ. For baking zucchini bread, muffins or brownies, the largest ones are best. One CSA member slices the big patty pans to use as a pizza base. She layers her tomato sauce and pizza toppings on and then grills or bakes them. A great idea!
What isn’t in the box this week? Salad greens! We are hearing that many of you are overwhelmed with all the greens that have been in the box every week so far. These last few weeks we have been offering a few less greens, and this week the box will only have a small bag of baby kale (though we reserve the right to change kale to something else if we need to).
Garlic scapes & kohlrabi will be available as an extra for those who want them.
Around the farm this week …