Tuesday, May 27, 2014

2014 week 2

Half shares had either broccoli rate or collard greens and hakurei turnips or radishes.
I am so excited to be offering this produce to you in this weeks share.

Broccoli Rabe is a bitter green, very similar to mustard greens.  I love broccoli rabe cooked with lots of garlic!  I recommend blanching the rabe in boiling water to take the edge off the bitterness first then sauteing with olive oil and garlic.  Here is a link to a recipe.

Collard Greens - your body will love you for eating these healthy greens.  Check out this recipe for collards.

Click here for what to do with Arugula.

Hakurei Turnips - They are delicious raw added to salads or slaws or just sprinkled with salt.  When cooked, they develop a buttery flavor and when roasted at high temperatures, their sweetness increases.
Don't get rid of the tops! Sauté with garlic in olive oil--tasty or add to your morning smoothy for a vitamin boost.

We are so, so thankful that we didn't receive any hail in last weeks storm.  And our thoughts are with our fellow farmers that saw great loss.   This farming business is crazy, risky, and at times just plain hard. 

Simple Arugula Recipes

written by Angela Livesay

I only ever use arugula for salads (and the occasional sandwich) because it has a great peppery bite that pairs really well with any number of different flavors and textures. The most simple, base recipe that I use for it is Arugula Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette. From that point, it's just a matter of choosing your toppings. Because this salad is bright and peppery, I like to top it with something creamy (like a cheese or avocado) and something crunchy (for texture variety).

Arugula Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
For one full-share salad (Half-shares would...well...halve this):

-Arugula (washed and dried)

Lemon Vinaigrette:
-Juice of one large lemon (about 3-4 tablespoons depending on the lemon)
-1 tsp of honey
-1/4 tsp of salt (you can add more to taste later)
-1/4-1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
-Cracked black pepper, to taste

-In a large salad bowl, start making the vinaigrette. Whisk the lemon juice, honey, and salt until combined. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil (start with 1/4 cup). Check for taste at this point and add more oil or salt if necessary).

-Add the arugula to the bowl *only* when you're right about to serve the salad.

Here are my favorite ways to top this salad:

Arugula Salad with...
-Shaved parmesan and toasted pine nuts
-Sliced strawberries, crumbled goat cheese, and toasted pecans
-Sliced avocadoes and crispy oven roasted chickpeas
-Sliced apples and brie cheese (or crumbled gorgonzola)

Quinoa Salad with Arugula

-1 ½ cups quinoa, red or black (whatever color you want, but I used the Trader Joe’s red)
-3 cups water
-2T +1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
-1 lb asparagus chopped into 1” pieces or 1lb yellow/green squash, sliced into quarters (any green vegetable would work here; use what’s in season)
-Sea salt
-1 clove garlic
-1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
-1 small cucumber, sliced into quarters
-5 green onion, sliced (or 1 red onion)
-1/4 cup basil, minced
-1/4 cup mint, minced
-1/2 cup feta, crumbled
-1 small head of arugula, washed and dried (about 2-3 cups)

-Rinse quinoa well. Bring water to a boil in a saucepan and add the rinsed quinoa. Bring water back to a boil; cover with a lid and cook on low heat for 25 minutes. Let quinoa sit for 5 minutes before fluffing with a fork. Transfer quinoa to a large bowl and set aside.

-In a large pan, fry  asparagus OR squash slices in 2 T of olive oil until tender-crisp, about 2-3 minutes. Let cool.
-To make the dressing, mash garlic with a pinch of salt to make a paste. Whisk in the lemon juice and let sit for 10 minutes. Slowly whisk in the ¼ cup of olive oil, basil, mint, salt, and pepper. Add to quinoa and zucchini mixture. Fold in the feta, sliced green onion, and arugula and then serve!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

2014 week 1

After what seemed like too long, the CSA has finally started.

And what a great day to start.

Click here for what to do with radishes.

Click here for what to do with escarole.

Click here for a recipe with Bok Choy.

Click here for a step by step on how to prep your greens. This post speaks specifically about spinach, but it applies to all greens (Red Romaine, Bok Choy, Escarole). *It is very important to do this to make the lettuce last and stay crisp.*

We have never delayed the start of CSA two weeks, like we did this year. It was a hard thing to do. The anticipation was killing us. Now, in retrospect, it was the right decision. We are so glad to have this variety of crops to share on the first week.

The asparagus is from our neighbors, the Catalanos.  Everything else is from our farm.

The strawberries are delicious, but few. Strawberries this year will be underwhelming. It just isn't shaping up to be a good strawberry year. The winter was hard on them, spring was so late, and we had some problems with weed control. All this to say, you may see strawberries in pints more often than quarts this year.

It was so great to see so many returning members and meet you new members today.

Bok Choy. . . It's delicicous!

Many of you were asking what to do with your Bok Choy.  Here is my favorite way to prepare it.  **Bonus it is quick and easy.

This is not an exact recipe, sorry to my peeps who like specific instructions.

To prep the bok choy cut the stalks from the leaves.  (The stalks take longer to cook).  Chop the stalks into large bite sized pieces.  Then chop the leaves into 1 inch pieces.  I also added some sliced red onion, but you could use sweet onion or green onions too.

Heat olive oil in saute pan on high.  Make sure it is good and hot then add the stalks and onion and saute for 1-2 minutes.  Then add in the leaves.  Like spinach, the leaves will wilt.  Then I added a sprinkle of red pepper flakes, a couple drops of toasted sesame oil and a few splashes of soy sauce.  Stir and cook just until greens have wilted.  It will only take1-2 more minutes.  YUM!

Word to the wise: I overdid it a little on the soy sauce,  that stuff is so potent, it only takes a little.


Sunday, May 18, 2014

Meet Your Farmer: Part 1

One of THE best parts of being a member of a CSA is getting to know your farmer.

So over the next couple weeks I will take the time to introduce you to our farming family.

First up: Me!

Hi I'm Martie and I am the voice behind the blog. I am wife to Eric, mom to Trevor (11), Anna (8), and Grady (6).

I grew up on my grandfather's farm in Lower Alloway's Creek. There I learned at a young age how to work: hoe a field of squash, pick, pack and deliver produce, drive tractor. We worked a lot of hay and straw. I spent my summers throwing bales in the hot sweaty hay maul and I loved it. Maybe not loved every hot sticky scratchy moment but I enjoyed being outside setting out to bale a field and in the end having a barn full of hay to show for it. I will be forever grateful to my Grandad for taking the time to train me up to not shy away from farm work.

When I entered high school I met this dreamy guy with long curly hair who would later become my husband. He was a farm kid and after dating him for almost 2 years I asked if I could get a job on their farm. I loved working for Grandad, but the work was sporadic and I needed a good steady summer job.

There was a big  difference from working on my Grandad's sleepy farm which was a slower pace (think water breaks where you get Grandad talking and the story lasts 40 minutes) to a bustling farm with 20 employees, trying to grow, pick and pack 170 acres of fresh produce to support a growing family. It was intense and I loved it.  It was fast paced and it was fun!

When Eric asked me to marry him (I said YES!) I was a student at Rowan University studying elementary education and he was at the University of Delaware studying Bioresources Engineering. It was at that time we decided we wanted to be full time farmers. We wanted to have a family and raise our kids on a farm. Every time we discussed the other possibilities, Eric getting a engineering job, myself teaching, we just didn't see that in our future. We dreamed of working together, working the land, and growing the best fresh produce. We were so excited about our future together on the farm, it was tempting to drop out of college, but with great persistence we finished our degrees while getting married in my sophomore year.

In 2007, we had an opportunity to build a house on the farm while expecting our third child and in need of a bigger house. We had only been living five miles away, so you might think it would not be that big of a difference, but this move transformed our relationship with the farm and with each other. Living on the farm means you're never far from work, for better or for worse. This is not just a job anymore, it's our life. It also means that we're never far from the ones we love. The kids can run out to see what Dad is doing in the field. Dad can stop in and steal a kiss from Mom when he likes. I am so blessed to have the opportunity to live this life and I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Thank you for letting us be your farmers.