Walnut Run Farm

Walnut Run Farm

certified organic CSA in Williamsport, PA

Archive for July 2013

CSA News July 30

 

On the farm this week we had a much needed rain on Sunday and have been weeding and mowing to maintain our fall crops.  We are preparing to cover crop and seed late fall rounds in the next few weeks.

In your share you will find:

  • Salad Mix or Lettuce Head
  • Parsley
  • Lemongrass
  • Bell or frying pepper
  • Jalapenos Peppers and/or Hungarian Hot Yellow Wax Peppers
  • Onions
  • Potatoes
  • Heirloom Tomatoes
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Cucumber
  • Zucchini

 

We are including a few jalapeno recipes and a few lemongrass recipes. The jalapenos are the smaller, dark green peppers.  The Hungarian Hot Yellow wax are banana shaped, yellow and longer. They are not as nearly as hot as the jalepeno pepper, but they still have a little kick to them.

A few days ago made the jalapeno simple syrup from the cookbook

Smoke and Pickles that we mentioned last week.    We used Misty Mountain Farms maple syrup instead of sugar and have been using it to make spicy lemonade.  It is sweet with just a little heat right at end.

 

Jalapeno Vinaigrette

Ingredients

3 jalapeno peppers

1 tablespoon coarsely chopped cilantro(sub parsley)

1 tablespoon coarsely chopped shallots(sub onion)

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Directions

In a nonstick saucepan, roast the jalapenos over high heat until the skins char. Turn the heat off, cover the pan, and set aside for 5 minutes.

Peel the cooled jalapenos and remove the stems. Slice lengthwise and, over a small bowl, scrape out the seeds and discard while allowing the juices to collect in the bowl.

Add the cilantro, shallots, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to the bowl and whisk to combine. Whisk in the olive oil.

Will keep for two weeks, tightly covered, in the refrigerator.

—–from Whole Living

Lemongrass and Ginger Tea

INGREDIENTS:

* 1  bunches of lemongrass, woody ends trimmed.

* 2-3-inch piece ginger, scrubbed and cut into thin slices

* 4 cups water

* stevia or honey

 

DIRECTIONS:

Use the back (blunt side) of a large butcher’s knife and give a couple whacks to the lemongrass to bruise the bulbs and release some of the oils.

 

Combine the lemongrass, ginger and water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Drain and sweeten to taste with stevia or honey.

–from GirlCooksWorld

 

Lemon-Grass-Ginger Soup With Mushrooms

By MARK BITTMAN(from NY Times)

 

INGREDIENTS

6 cups chicken stock

3 stalks lemon grass(more as our lemongrass is slender)

4 nickel-size slices ginger

3 or 4 small hot chilies, minced(sub jalapenos)

2 tablespoons nam pla (fish sauce), or to taste

6 to 8 ounces roughly chopped oyster mushrooms

2 teaspoons minced lime leaves or lime zest

Juice of 1 lime

1/4 cup minced cilantro leaves

PREPARATION

 

1.

Heat the stock over medium heat. Trim two of the lemon-grass stalks of their toughest outer layers, then bruise them with the back of a knife; cut them into sections, and add them to the stock with the ginger and about 1/4 of the minced chilies. Simmer for about 15 minutes, longer if you have the time. Peel all the hard layers off the remaining stalk of lemon grass, and mince its tender inner core.

2.

When you’re ready to eat the soup, remove the lemon grass and ginger. Add 1 tablespoon nam pla and the chopped mushrooms. Taste the broth, and add more chilies if you like, as well as some salt if necessary. In the bottom of each of 4 warmed bowls, sprinkle a little each of the chile, lime leaves or zest, lime juice, cilantro and minced lemon grass.

3.

Ladle the soup into the bowls and add a teaspoon of nam pla to each bowl. Serve piping hot.

YIELD 4 servings

CSA Newsletter July 23

July 23, 2013

On the farm this week we harvested the garlic crop and set it up to dry in the barn.  We will include it in the shares again in a few weeks when it has cured.  We have some more lambs headed to the butcher this week and will have more lamb available at the farmers market two weekends from now.

In your shares this week you will find:

  • Salad Mix
  • Dill
  • Heirloom Tomatoes
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Roma Tomatoes
  • Carrots
  • Beets
  • Beans
  • Zucchini
  • Cucumber
  • Pepper

Roma tomatoes are excellent for sauce.  I prefer them for salsa and sandwiches a lot too because they contain less water. We are including recipes for zucchini fritters, Adde’s Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread and Bourbon-ginger glazed carrots.

Both the cake and the fritters call for grated zucchini.  Both are great ways to use up extra zucchini.   I also grate it, pack it into freezer bags and freeze it for winter to use for both of these recipes and in soups and stir fry.

This time of year we make lots of stir fry. We have so many veggies on the farm and so little time to cook that stir fry ends up as our default dinner. So if your crunched for time and/or wondering what to do with your leftover  CSA veggies, throw it in a skillet, wok or pan and fry it up with some tamari, Soy Vay, fish sauce  or whatever you like.

Zucchini Fritters

1 pound (about 2 medium) zucchini

1 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest (1 lemon) plus

1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges (optional)

10 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley, stems removed and leaves finely chopped, plus more sprigs for garnish (optional)

1 medium clove garlic, peeled and minced

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2 to 4 tablespoons olive oil

Directions

Using the large holes of a box grater, grate zucchini into a medium bowl. Add the salt, lemon zest, chopped parsley, garlic, pepper, and eggs. Mix well to combine. Slowly add flour, stirring so no lumps form.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat until the oil sizzles when you drop a small amount of zucchini mixture into the pan. Carefully drop about 2 tablespoons zucchini mixture into pan; repeat, spacing fritters a few inches apart.

Cook fritters until golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Lower heat to medium. Turn fritters, and continue cooking until golden, 2 to 3 minutes more. Transfer fritters to a plate; set aside in a warm place. Cook remaining zucchini mixture, adding more oil to pan if necessary. Garnish with parsley sprigs and lemon wedges, if desired; serve. From Martha Stewart Living, March 1999

We also add Old Bay and mayonnaise to this recipe.

The bourbon-ginger glazed carrots is a recipe from a new cookbook by Chef Edward Lee. It’s called Smoke and Pickles and if you enjoy southern cuisine I can’t recommend this book enough.  Edward Lee is also a guest columnist at Organic Gardening Magazine and is a good storyteller as well, so there’s two more points for Chef Lee.

Bourbon-ginger glazed carrots

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1 pound baby carrots sliced lengthwise

¼ cup packed brown sugar

3 tablespoons minced ginger

3 tablespoons bourbon

Juice of 1 orange

2 teaspoons salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Heat butter in a large skillet over high heat.  Add carrots and sauté for  about 6 minutes until slightly softened. Add brown sugar and ginger and cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Deglaze the pan by stirring in the bourbon and OJ. Cook until the carrots are fork tender and the liquid is reduced and syrupy, about 6-8 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Addie and her husband own the farm we used to manage in Colorado and she used to bake us this wonderful chocolate zucchini bread whenever we would have a glut of zucchini (which was about this time every year) and we never got tired of it. It’s so soft and rich that it’s pretty much a cake that you bake into a loaf.

Addie’s Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread

2 sm. zucchini (about 1/2 lb. total) or 2 c. grated

4 c. flour

1/2 c. cocoa

1 1/2 c. sugar

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. baking powder

3/4 tsp. salt

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1 1/2 c. oil( I always sub melted butter)

3 eggs

1 1/2 c. milk

2 tsp. vanilla

1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Butter 2 (8 x 4) loaf pans.

Grate zucchini. In a large bowl, combine flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda and powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. In another bowl, combine zucchini with everything else except the chocolate chips. Stir into dry ingredients until just blended. Stir in chocolate chips.

Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake until a toothpick stuck in the center of the bread comes out clean, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Cool on rack 10 minutes, then remove from pans and cool completely.

Looking to next week we plan to include— potatoes, leeks or onions, parsley, tomatoes and cherry tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, zucchini, beans, and lettuce.

 

CSA Newsletter July 16

 

On the farm this week we seeded onions to overwinter for next year.  We also, planted one round of fall broccoli and seeded another.  The weed pressure is taking off after all of the rain and we are picking beans like crazy.

In your share this week you will find:

  • Lettuce Head
  • Salad Mix
  • Garlic(refrigerator garlic)
  • Beans
  • Fennel
  • Artichoke
  • Zucchini
  • Cucumber
  • Heirloom Tomato
  • Pepper
  • Onions
  • Potatoes
  • Dill Blossom
  • Basil
  • Eggplant or Okra or Cherry Tomato

We are including recipes for dirty rice, tomato soup and a fennel artichoke salad.  We are also including dill blossoms for dilly beans if you are interested in pickling.

We grow cherry tomatoes, paste tomatoes and heirloom tomatoes.  All of our larger tomatoes are heirlooms.    We are primarily concerned with flavor when we grow things, and this goes double for tomatoes.  Heirlooms are not necessarily harder to grow than commercial varieties but they are more prone to splitting and they are not uniform for packing and shipping.   The varieties we grow are Brandywine, Yellow Brandywine, Cosmonaut, Pruden’s Purple, Cherokee Purple, Black Krim, Valencia, Pineapple, and Moskvich.

As the tomatoes start coming in, we make huge batches of salsa for ourselves.  Chop up tomatoes, garlic, onions, some pepper, and cilantro(basil and other herbs also work well).   Add a little salt and an acid- either lime juice or vinegar.    Then we eat most of it with tortilla chips, make potato burritos or use it on pizza.  If you would like it to be less watery, place a colander over a bowl and pour the salsa into the colander.  The excess liquid will drain off.  For a quick meal, I also try to have cooked pasta on hand.  I heat up olive oil gently in a pan and add the salsa, then toss in pasta,  get it all just bubbling.  Cut the heat and then add whatever cheese I have on hand. Goat cheese is the best but usually cheddar is what I have available. The other way that I use tomatoes is to slice them very thin and make sandwiches with bread, mayonnaise and maybe cucumber and onion.  No cheese, nothing fancy, the tomato and mayonnaise are key and I could eat them almost exclusively for most of the summer.

Heirloom Tomato Soup

Heirloom tomatoes-overripe, skinned, chopped about 2 med-lg per person

Garlic-1 clove per person

Chile flakes-pinch per person

Sweet red vermouth

Salt

Olive Oil

Sauté the garlic and chile until very lightly brown. Remove from the heat completely and immediately add about 3 tbsp of vermouth per person. Let the vermouth burn off and reduce by half. Add the tomato chunks and a good heavy pinch of salt. Simmer to thicken for 5-8 minutes..

Season with salt, pepper if you like and a dash more vermouth at the end if your tomatoes aren’t as ripe as you’d like. Serve with crusty bread or grilled cheese.

This dirty rice recipe is  adapted from  an Alice Waters recipe.  In general I cut up whatever vegetables I have on hand or need to use up.  Zucchini, Piracicaba, escarole, chard, etc.  And whatever herbs.  It is typically made with meat, but this recipe is meatless.

Dirty Rice

2 tbs vegetable oil

1-2 peppers

1 Jalapeno pepper(optional)

1 onion

3 garlic cloves

¼ cup Worcestershire sauce

3 cups cooked long-grain white or brown rice

2 tbs fresh herbs

Heat oil and sauté vegetables until tender.  Add rice and Worcestershire sauce.  Mix well.  Add spices and herbs you desire.  Cook gently for 10-15 minutes.  Let rest for a few minutes and serve.

Fennel, Artichoke, and Parmesan Salad

(cut in half for this share if necessary)

1/4 c Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

1 tb White truffle oil; optional

2 lg Fennel bulbs

3 oz Parmigiano reggiano

2 Lemons

Salt and pepper

2 lg Artichokes

1/2 c Italian parsley; leaves only

DIRECTIONS: 1) Pare the artichokes down to their hearts and scoop out the chokes with a spoon, dropping them into water acidulated with the juice of 1 of the lemons.

2 Slice the fennel bulbs very thin with a mandoline or a very sharp knife. Remove the artichoke hearts from the water and slice them very thin the same way.

3) Assemble the salad in layers on a large platter or on individual salad plates. First make a layer of the fennel slices. Squeeze lemon juice evenly over the fennel and drizzle with salt and pepper. Then make a layer of the artichoke hearts, also slice very thin. Squeeze more lemon juice over them, drizzle evenly with another third of the oils, and season with salt and pepper. Cut thin shavings of the Parmesan with cheese slicer or a vegetable peeler and arrange them on top of the artichoke slices. Scatter the parsley leaves over the cheese, season with salt and pepper, squeeze more lemon juice over, and drizzle evenly with the rest of the oils. Serve immediately.

-Chez Panisse recipe

 

Looking to next week we plan to include: Beets, Lettuce, Peppers, Tomatoes, Parsley, Zucchini, Carrots, and more.

 

CSA Newsletter

July 9, 2013

On the farm this week we have begun our full on harvesting mode. For the rest of the summer we will be getting into the fields with the sunrise to make sure we have the harvest in before the heat of the day begins, and then putting in long hours in the packing shed washing and packing produce. With the oncoming of crops like zucchini, tomatoes, beans and cucumbers, there will be something that needs to be harvested almost every day of the week.

In you share this week you will find:

  • Salad Mix
  • Romaine Lettuce
  • Baby Chard
  • Basil
  • Chives
  • Cucumber or Piracicaba
  • Cherry Tomatoes or Tomatoes
  • Garlic (Refrigerator Garlic!)
  • Shell Peas
  • Carrots
  • Zucchini
  • Beans

The garlic in your share is fresh garlic!  It is not cured and must be refrigerated.

One of our go-to quick meals this time of year is beans with garlic and almonds.

Most recipes call for slivered almonds, but we usually just chop whole almonds up and it comes out great. Here’s one variation:

  • 1/2 pound beans, trimmed
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 cup blanched whole almonds, finely ground

Cook beans in a 3-qt. saucepan of boiling salted water until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes, and drain.

Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over moderate heat, then cook garlic, stirring, until it just begins to turn golden, about 1 minute.

Add almonds and cook, stirring, until they begin to color slightly, about 2 minutes. Add beans and cook, stirring, until tender and heated through, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

I used to only use romaine to dress up sandwiches or to make Caesar salad,  but a few years ago someone served us a grilled romaine heart with a balsamic reduction drizzled on top and it blew my mind.  Since romaine has a heart (that dense cluster of leaves at the center of the head) you can grill or pan fry it to add a new twist to your lettuce.

You can do this on a grill or in a pan. This recipe is for a pan, but it’s essentially the same on a grill.

Just trim off the outer romaine leaves, exposing the heart. Cut the heart in half.

Rinse romaine halves, then shake off water and pat dry.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, then add  romaine halves, cut sides down, and sprinkle with a sea salt.

Cook, turning over once with tongs, until browned, about 2 minutes total, then cover and cook until just crisp-tender, 2 to 3 minutes more.

If you want to make the balsamic reduction it’s really easy to do. You just use one cup of balsamic vinegar and one teaspoon of sugar. Combine them in a pan and cook on high, whisking it constantly so that it doesn’t burn. It should cook down until syrupy and about half its original volume. Now turn the heat down to low until it’s just warm.  Drizzle it on top of the romaine halves. Sprinkle on some bleu cheese if you like and there you have it.
Bruschetta is another summer favorite in our family.  We prefer to make it with toasted home baked bread, (a lot of recipes insist on baguettes) but any bread or crackers works just fine. You can even eat it with Fritos if you like.

Since you have tomato, basil and fresh garlic in your shares this week we thought we’d include an easy bruschetta recipe showcasing those three ingredients.

 

Chop 3-4 cloves of garlic.

Dice about one and a half cups of tomato.

Chop 3 tablespoons of basil.

Toss these gently in a bowl with about ¼ cup olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Sprinkle in some grated parmesan or asiago cheese.

 

Toast your bread and then top it with the above mixture.

 

Cucumber Slices with Chickpea Puree, Basil and Chives

 

Ingredients

1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas, drained and rinsed

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon fresh basil, plus chives for garnish

1 small garlic clove

1 tablespoon olive oil

Coarse salt and ground pepper

1 English cucumber, sliced

1/4 cup jarred roasted red peppers, cut into small strips

Directions

In a food processor, combine chickpeas, lemon juice, thyme, garlic, oil, and 1/4 cup water; process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper and process until combined.

 

Dividing evenly, dollop chickpea puree onto cucumber slices, top with a roasted red pepper strip and thyme leaves. Serve immediately.

 

 

—-from Whole Living

 

( There is also a recipe on the Whole Living website for chard potstickers!)

 

Next week in your shares we hope to include: Potatoes, Onions, Garlic,

Beans, Tomatoes, Artichokes, Cucumber, Zucchini.

We will also have eggplant and peppers in the very near future!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CSA newsletter July 2, 2013

 

On the farm this week we have been lucky to get a bit of rain.  We transplanted some fall crops like collards and cabbage, and have the winter squash and melons in the ground as well.  We also have lamb available again at the Williamsport Grower’s Market.

In your share you will find:

  • Salad Mix
  • Arugula
  • Beets
  • Carrots
  • Shell Peas(hard, shell, then eat the peas inside—more work but worth it)
  • Snap Peas(slightly curved, snap off the end and eat the whole thing)
  • Parsley
  • Cucumber or Cabbage
  • Fennel
  • Zucchini

We were not able to include chives due to the rain but we will include them next week, weather permitting.  We are including a few recipes for beets and fennel, but you can search our blog for some past recipes for fennel.   It is great caramelized or grilled in addition to fresh in a salad.

We have also been sautéing and then steaming any combination of vegetables—really whatever we have onthe counter or in the fridge—-zucchini, snap peas, shell peas,  escarole, Piracicaba, kale, potatoes, chard, carrots, beets,  etc.   Then we toss in just a little blue cheese right at the end.    Also, just a little soy sauce or sesame oil, with  salt and pepper (and no cheese)  goes a long way.  It is a very easy, simple way to cook all kinds of produce into a great dish.
Roasted Beets on Greens

Ingredients

2 bunches trimmed beets

3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Juice of 1 lemon

2 tsp honey

1 minced clove garlic

1 tsp fennel seeds

1 tsp caraway seeds

Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 cups baby spinach, divided(sub arugula and salad mix)

1 cup fresh parsley leaves, divided

Thinly sliced red onion

Directions

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Wrap beets in foil and roast until tender, about 1 hour. Let cool, then peel and dice.

Whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, honey, garlic, and fennel and caraway seeds. Season with salt and pepper. Toss with beets.

For each serving, toss 1 cup dressed beets with 1 cup spinach and 1/4 cup parsley. Season with salt and pepper and top with onion.

Beet, Fennel and Arugula Salad

Ingredients:

4 beets, with 1 inch of stem intact

2 tsp. plus 2 Tbs. olive oil

2 Tbs. sherry vinegar

1/2 tsp. salt

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

4 cups baby arugula

2 oz. Manchego cheese(or Asiago, Parmesean, whatever you have…)

1 fennel bulb, cored, trimmed and cut into 8 wedges

1 shallot, thinly sliced

Directions:

Roast the beets.Preheat an oven to 400°F.  Rub the beets with the 2 tsp. olive oil. Wrap the beets individually in aluminum foil and bake until they are easily pierced with a knife, about 1 hour.( I usually just roast them without the foil.) Let cool to the touch in the foil. Peel( and I never peel them) and slice the beets.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, salt and pepper. Whisk in the 2 Tbs. olive oil.

Assemble the salad

Toss the arugula in the dressing until lightly coated. Divide among salad plates, shaking off any excess dressing. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the cheese generously over the greens. Toss the fennel in the dressing and then arrange on the greens. Toss the beets and the shallot in the dressing and then mound in the center of each serving.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Vegetarian, by Dana Jacobi (Oxmoor House, 2007).

Fresh Pea and Fennel Saute

By Marcia Kiesel

Ingredients

1/2 pound sugar snap peas

2 cups freshly shelled peas (from 2 pounds in the shell)

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 fennel bulb, cored and cut into 1/4-inch dice

1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Salt and freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons minced chives(sub parsley)

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the sugar snap peas and cook until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the sugar snap peas to a large plate and let cool until warm. Add the shelled peas to the boiling water and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Drain.

Heat the oil in the saucepan. Add the fennel, cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring a few times, until slightly softened, about 4 minutes. Add all of the peas and stir until warmed through. Remove from the heat. Stir in the butter and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the chives or parsley and serve.

 

Looking to next week we plan to include:

Green Garlic, Chives,

 Possibly artichoke and cucumber,

Beets, Carrots, Lettuce, Zucchini and Baby Chard