BLUE GOOSE FARM ~ Nicktown, PA

FROM OUR HANDS TO YOUR TABLE

Welcome to the blog.
Posted 9/22/2010 7:53am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

This seems a bit like a holy week in our family. Potatoes are a staple in the Farabaugh family, and they are being harvested this week. You'll be seeing potatoes in your boxes, most likely, until the end of season. If you know you might want extra for cold storage this winter, please email us or call us so we may make arrangements with you to come by the farm or Johnstown market to pick up your order. 

It seems people are having difficulty finding canned pumpkin in the stores. We will have pie pumpkins, but we may be lucky to stretch the quantity among all the members for one week only.  (Remember, you can also substitute butternut squash puree in your favorite pumpkin recipe.) As for large decorative pumpkins, we will not be putting them in the boxes this year for lack of space. If you wish to purchase any decorative pumpkins, they will be available at the Farmers Market. Or you may contact us directly to make arrangements to come by the farm to purchase them.

There is a new item in the box this week - a new variety anyway - Hasta la Pasta. This is a type of spaghetti squash. It is orange in color both in the shell and the pulp. Prep it and eat it the same as the yellow variety.

Speaking of squash, the butternut squash soup recipe in last week's newsletter is good, but for some it may have been too "peppery." Kelleigh, our test kitchen guru, suggests to cut the amount of pepper in half to a 1/2 t, and try adding 1/2 t curry powder. She says another yummy addition is to add potatoes - white or sweet. Simply dice them up and add to soup with squash. You may have to add more cooking time to ensure the potatoes are tender before pureeing. Sounds good!

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
leeks
potatoes
spaghetti squash (Hasta la Pasta)
red pepper
carrot
swiss chard
lettuce
eggplant
tomatoes (round or plum)

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The carrots may seem small, but smaller carrots pack bigger taste. Cut them in penny slices. Steam and serve with a spat of butter and dill. YUM!
  • For a tasty Potato Leek Soup recipe, review our recipes on the website or Newsletter Week 1.
  • Saute eggplant, chard, red pepper, and leeks in olive oil with garlic, salt and pepper. Toss over cooked and shredded spaghetti squash. Colorful and healthy.

In the Kitchen

Tasty Swiss Chard  (quick and easy)
1 bunch swiss chard, rinsed and drained
olive oil
1 clove garlic
1/4 c parmesan cheese
1/4 c bread crumbs
15.5 oz can cannellini beans

Remove the swiss chard greens and chop the stems into small pieces; keep separate.  Boil the stems about 5 minutes, then add the greens and boil until they wilt.  Drain.

Saute garlic in olive oil.  Add chard, parmesan cheese, bread crumbs and beans.  Heat through and serve.


Garden Lasagna (a little time consuming, but delicious!)
2 -3 small eggplant, trimmed and sliced into 1/4" rounds
salt
olive oil
2 gloves garlic
1 bundle swiss chard, ribs removed
2 leeks, sliced into 1/4" rounds
2 eggs
1 16 oz container ricotta cheese
1-1/2 C Parmesan cheese, divided
1-1/2 C Mozzeralla cheese, divided
pepper to taste
1-1/2 C carrots, grated
your choice of marinara sauce

On baking sheet, place slices of eggplant and brush both sides with oil. Carefully broil them for 3 minutes per side. Watch as some may cook faster than others, in which case, remove them as they darken and crisp. Let them cool.

In pan, saute oil, garlic, and leeks and cook on medium heat until leeks soften. Add chard and cook for 4-5 minutes more until chard is tender. Set aside to cool.

In a bowl, stir together eggs, ricotta, half of parmesan and mozzeralla cheeses, and pepper. Add carrots, chard, and leeks. Mix well.

In a greased 13x9 baking dish, create layers in the following manner:
sauce, eggplant slices, cheese and veggie mixture, repeat until all ingredients used ending with sauce and remaining halves of cheeses on top.

 
Enjoy the last bits of summer weather!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com

Posted 9/15/2010 6:00am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

In April and May, our members begin to get excited about the start of the CSA. With 5 weeks of CSA left (after this week), our members are beginning to groan with saddness for the end of this season. But the good news is, the weather is cooler and heartier meals are made - a great time to begin making homemade soups (see recipes below)!

Our lettuce right now isn't as plentiful as we had hoped. We planted enough to provide for the remainder of the season. But with the hot weather, much of it went to seed much sooner than it should have gone. This week you'll receive a variety of head lettuce (resembles romaine), and we believe to have salad mix one more time, just not sure when.

Each year we learn from the previous year. We, Scott especially, have learned a lot this past summer particularly. Lettuce has been one of our study subjects this year and we've come to find which varieties grow best for us. Also which varieties grow best in June versus September. Hopefully, this will pay off for planning and planting next year's crops.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
lettuce
cabbage
butternut squash
red onions
red and green peppers
purple OR green beans
tomatoes

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • Try substituting butternut squash puree for pumpkin puree in a pumpkin bread recipe, YUM!
  • Be sure to visit our website for more recipes!

In the Kitchen
Butternut Squash Soup
(There are many versions of this soup. This is an easy, classic recipe in which any winter squash may be substituted.)

1 medium-large butternut squash (about 3-1/2 lbs, about 7-8 C)
3 T butter or olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 t ginger (or you may wish to use 1 t cumin)
1 t salt
1 t black pepper
6 C chicken broth (OR 4 C chicken broth, 2 C half-n-half)
thyme, cilantro, parsley
toasted squash seeds

Pierce squash with knife about four times. Bake in 400 degree oven for 1 hour. (Some may wish to half the squash, seed it, and bake same as above.) Once baked and cooled, scoop out seeds and pulp. The seeds may be rinsed, dried, lightly coated with cooking oil and baked in oven until browned, but not burned. Reserve to garnish the soup before serving. The pulp may be cut into tiny cubes.

Meanwhile, in a soup pot, melt butter and add onions. Cook until tender.  Stir in 4 C chicken broth and add ginger, salt, pepper. Add squash. Simmer about 20 minutes, stirring to break up squash. In batches, puree this mixture in a blender or food processor. Return puree to soup pot and add remaining 2 C chicken broth for a brothier soup OR 2 C half-n-half for a creamier soup. Warm through before serving.
Garnish with favorite herb and toasted seeds.

NOTE - For a spicier version, try adding cayenne pepper, red chili pepper, or chopped jalapeno pepper with seeds. For a heartier, meal-like soup, try adding 2 C diced potatoes, 1/2 C diced celery, 1/2 C diced, carrots.

Country Cabbage Soup
1 T olive oil
3 potatoes, skin on, diced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 onion, halved and sliced
6 C chicken broth (OR 4 C broth 2 C water)
2 carrots, sliced
1 t caraway seeds
4 C shredded green cabbage
salt & pepper to taste
parsley
parmesan cheese or crumbled blue cheese

In soup pot, heat olive oil. Add and cook until tender onions & garlic. Careful not to brown or burn. Add broth, carrots, caraway seeds, and potatoes. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in cabbage. Simmer for 20 minutes more. Sprinkle in salt, pepper, parsley to taste. Serve warm with cheese sprinkled over top. Be sure to taste the soup as you cook especially when adding seasonings. Getting the seasonings right is important so your soup doesn't taste flat. Some people can't use but so much salt in their diet, so the saltiness of the selected cheeses helps.


Enjoy a wonderful week!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com
Posted 9/8/2010 6:21am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

The event of summer is behind us, though the weather still lingers. For how much longer, who knows...but we'll take it! It beats the alternative!

You'll see lettuce again. Also, a few new items this week - carrots and celery. The carrots had a difficult time growing this year with the weather and the deer. We did not get nearly as many as we had last year. We're not sure how many weeks we can distribute them. Enjoy what's here.

Our celery is darker, richer in color than what you're used to seeing in the stores. This is most likely due to the fact that the celery in the stores have been peeled down to the inner core and had the top leaves cropped off. We enjoy our flavor better, too.

This may be the last week for hot peppers. The Italian peppers didn't seem too popular. And our jalapeno pepper plants took a hit over the weekend with the burst of wind we received. Most of the plants blew over which is never good to have them lying on the ground. And they got "sun burned" without the protection of the leaves.

Farming is never easy - escpecially when trying to grow enough to feed over 200 families. You'll hear a farmer (like me) say, "It'll be better next year."  Sometimes "next year" doesn't come! It's a constant experiment. Glad I don't have to bear it alone since I have all of you. THANKS for your compliments and support throughout the season.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
tomatoes
lettuce
spaghetti squash
carrots
celery
purple & green beans
jalapeno peppers

Culinary Corner...
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The leafy tops of the celery are the most flavorful parts of this plant. Chop up these leaves and use in potato salad, soups, or stews for enhanced flavor. 
  • The purple beans are beautiful in color and taste. When eaten fresh, you'll notice the internal green color and slightly sweet flavor. Once cooked, these beans magically turn green, so the kids can't complain about the "funny looking beans."
  • This is a great week to enjoy a good ol' fashion house salad with the simple ingredients of lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, celery, and green beans (or purple for fun color).

  • ...in the Kitchen
    Spaghetti Squash
    This is not a formalized recipe, rather simple suggestions on how to cook and prepare.

    Some recipes you'll read say to cut the squash in half before cooking. We suggest cooking it whole. Why? One, for safety reasons. These squash can sometimes be very hard and trying to cut them in half with a large knife can be dangerous. Two, it actually cooks better this way.

    So, pierce the outside shell in four to five spots around the squash. This creates vents for the internal heat to escape so the squash won't explode. Cook in a baking dish for about 40 minutes in a 375 degree oven

    Once cooked, carefully cut the squash in half as the steam coming out of it can burn. Let it sit a minute before scooping out the seeds. Then, with a fork shred the inside "meat" of the squash. The result will look like a cooked pasta, hence the name.

    A simple preparation as a side dish is to add a little butter/margarine and sprinkle with parmesan cheese and black pepper. You may also add spaghetti sauce.

    Treat this squash like pasta and get creative by adding diced tomatoes, olives, different cheeses like feta or fontinella, herbs, or even cooked keilbasa or ground sausage, etc. Don't be afraid to try something new! This is a tasty and healthy means to a meal.


    Take a moment to enjoy the moment!
    Scott & Chrissy
    814-948-7188
    sctab@yahoo.com

Posted 9/1/2010 8:05am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

Enjoy your Labor Day weekend! Have fun with family and friends - cook out, drink a good wine, eat great veggies!

You'll be receiving the last of the sweet corn for this year. Boo hoo! Tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants are also coming to an end. We've done several pickings already. The heavy pickings are done, and we're on the backside of the light pickings now. Enjoy them while they last.

We've begun picking winter squash (acorn, carnival, butternut, spaghetti). These types of squash must be picked in advance before distribution so the skins have time to dry out and harden (unlike those of summer squash). This harder skin allows for a longer storage period through the fall and winter. You should start to see these squash in a week or two.

Also we're about 3 weeks away from our second arrival of broccoli. This is a treat as we've not done a late planting of this before. We're excited to have broccoli so late in the season!

What you can expect to find in your box this week:
corn
potatoes
parsley
red round tomatoes
Roma/plum tomatoes
onion
sweet peppers
green beans
eggplant


Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • If you like the rustic appearance of skins on your potatoes, now is the time to make smashed potatoes with the skins still on because the skins are still new and soft. A fun change to the alternative.
  • The amount of tomatoes you have in your box is a great quantity for adding to chili. Simply stew the tomatoes first by simmering them in boiling water for about 3-5 minutes. Peel off the skins and chop them into bite size pieces before adding to the cooked seasoned chili meat. You can also add cooked corn! AND in our family, we eat chili over smashed potatoes. A great combo.
  • These slicing tomatoes are also great for making an old fashioned tomato sandwich. Thinly slice the tomatoes and add 2-3 slices on bread. Add thinly sliced onions, if you choose, with a favorite slice of cheese. Add a favorite herb or condiment for extra flavor. Yum!
  • Try sauteeing the peppers and onions and adding them to your eggs for a splendid omelet breakfast this weekend!

...in the Kitchen

Country Green Beans (modified from recipe found in Taste of Home)
1 lb green beans, trimmed and snapped in halves or thirds
1/2 C diced onion
1/2 C diced boiled potatoes
1/2 C diced cooked ham, or 1/4 C chopped cooked bacon
3 T butter (or reserved grease from bacon)
1/2 C chicken broth
1 clove garlic, minced
salt & pepper to taste
parsley

Combine all ingredients in a skillet and cook for 20 minutes until beans are tender. Salt & pepper to your liking. Garnish with parsley. Serve warm.


We wish you a festive and safe holiday weekend!

Scott & Chrissy
sctfab@yahoo.com
814-948-7188
Posted 8/24/2010 3:55pm by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

What happened to the sun!? The cooler weather feels nice, but the dampness with it isn't good for our crops...especially the carrots. They are coming, we just don't know when. This weather affects them as do the deer that have found our carrot stash. Not good!

You'll be receiving another large dose of tomatoes this week. Enjoy them as they are coming to the end of their season. Our crops seem to have been about 1-2 weeks ahead of normal schedule - due to our good, hot summer. So instead of spreading out the amount of tomatoes over a longer span, they seem to have ripened in a shorter time frame. We appreciate you keeping up with us and our unpredictable veggies.

We have a number of yummy recipes this week, so be sure to read to the end!

We have a good number of members who are involved in education as some level - teachers, staff, students - and as they return for another year, we wish them all a safe and productive school year. Thank you for what you do.

What you can expect to find in your box this week...
corn
onion
beets (no tops)
green peppers
hot green/red peppers
golden tomatoes
red tomatoes (with a spash of orange and purple for color!)
cantelope OR eggplant

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The hot pepper in your box is indeed HOT! Beware. Scott was in the field on afternoon, and picked a few to test. Taking a bite of one was caught off guard and ran for the spring water. These particular peppers are an Italian gourmet pepper called Corno di Toro. Though most descriptions claim they are sweet Italian peppers, we find them not to be so.
  • This is a good week to create a delicious, home-made salsa with the amount of tomatoes, peppers, and onion you receive. Have fun!
  • If you're not a fan of beets but wan tthe nutritional value of them, try adding a beet puree to a chocolate cake recipe. The flavor is undetected while you still gain the "health" benefits. (To create a beet puree - simply boil them until very tender; peel their skins, and toss them into a food processor. Voila! This can be frozen for future use.)

...in the Kitchen
Tomato Salsa
1-1/2 C tomatoes, finely diced
1/2 C onion, diced
1/2 C green pepper, diced
1 T olive oil
2 t lime juice (add rind peelings for additional flavor)
1 t hot pepper with seeds (jalepeno, corno di toro, habenaro, etc.)
2 T cilantro
1/4 t salt
1/4 t black pepper

Mix all ingredients together. Salsa tastes best if you let the mixture sit at room temperature for an hour or so just after making it to let flavors meld. then yo umay refrigeratie it if necessary. Drain juices in a seive before serving.
NOTE - to speed up the process, but all veggies undiced with other ingredients into a food processor and pulse several times to preferred consistency.

Borscht (NY Deli Style)
3 C water (can also use vegetable or beef broth)
2-3 C beets, peeled and cut into strips
1 carrot, peeled and cut into strips
1 garlic clove
2 T lemon juice
1-1/2 t salt
1 t black pepper
sour cream
dill

Combine first four ingredients in a soup pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until beets are tender, about 10 minutes. Let cool. Tranfer to a food processor or blender and add lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Pulse to create a creamy texture. Serve warm or cold in bowls with a dollop of sour cream and a dash of dill.
NOTE - to make a heartier version, add bite-sized potatoes. You can add potatoes to soup pot and cook with the beets and carrots, then into the food processor for the puree OR you can add potatoes to the finished product for a chunkier version.

Spicy Pickled Summer Veggies (modified from version in Cottage Living, 2006)
2 C white vinegar (apple or red wine vinegars are also good to try for different flavors)
1/2 C sugar
1-1/2 T sea salt
2 t dill seed
1 t mustard seed
2 t crushed red pepper flakes
1 t ground black pepper
12 whole cloves
4 bay leaves
3-4 C veggies - use any of the following individually or combined:cucumber, zucchini, onion, peppers (hot or sweet), green beans, radishes, beets (will turn liquid purplish in color)

Combine all ingredients except veggies into a quart jar. Cover with lid, and shake until sugar dissolves. Add veggies to jar. Cover and shake again. Chill for at least 4 hours, best if overnight. Be sure to shake jar occasionally. Will keep in refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Enjoy the waning days of summer!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com
Posted 8/18/2010 7:22am by Scott Farabaugh.
Greetings BGF CSA Members,

What beautiful weather we are having lately - keep it coming!

We'd like to thank all of you for being mindful to return the green pint and quart size containers. We use these containers a lot and depend on having them, so thank you for your cooperation.

This week you'll be enjoying new potatoes! When you receive them, please be sure to keep them refrigerated. Because they are new, their skins haven't had a chance to set and they can bruise easily, so they should be kept cold.

I guess it's true what they say...careful what you wish for. Last year, we had no tomatoes. This year, we're reaping the benefits. We tried growing purple tomatoes this year and seem to have had luck. We really enjoy their flavor - probably better than any red one's. The Cherokee Purple (shaped like slicing tomatoes) are good with nice flavor. The Purple Russian (shaped like plum tomatoes) are tasty, but seem to be fragile...more so than the Cherokee Purple. We hope you're liking them, too.

Some people may feel they are getting an over abundance of them, especially since many people grow their own. We recently learned from a friend that they freeze theirs whole. Once frozen, the tomtoes are rock solid. When you wish to use them, simply thaw them under warm water and the skins peel right off. Once peeled, use the tomatoes like stewed ones for cooking. They aren't good for slicing at this point. Something to consider trying anyway.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
sweet corn
new potatoes
swiss chard
cucumber
tomatoes
basil
cantaloupe

Culinary Corner
  • Always wash your produce!
  • The basil is beginning to go to seed. You'll see flower-like tips on the stalks. This flower-like tip is the indication the plant is going to seed, which means the plant is nearing its end for the season and will need to be pulled. The basil maintains its flavor even at this stage. So simply remove the flower-like tip and discard. Then remove the leaves from their stems and stalks. Proceed with using this herb as you wish. Remember, you can dry or freeze this item to preserve for later.
In the Kitchen...
Corn Chowder (modified from version in Joy of Cooking)

5 slices bacon, chopped
1 large onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
6 C corn (cooked fresh or frozen)
3 potatoes, peeled and diced
4 C milk
4 C chicken broth
1 t pepper
basil or dill

In large soup pot, cook bacon on medium heat until browned. Add onions and celery and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Add corn, potatoes, milk, broth, and pepper. Cover and simmer for half an hour. Remove from heat, uncover, and cool slightly. In batches, spoon half of the soup into a food processor or blender and puree until creamy. Return pureed mixture to soup pot and stir. A true chowder has a creamy base with tiny pieces throughout for texture. Serve warm garnished with chopped basil or dill.

* This is an easy recipe, it feeds plenty, and it freezes very well. Enjoy!


Enjoy a fantastic weekend!
Scott & Chrissy
814-948-7188
sctfab@yahoo.com

Posted 8/11/2010 5:26am by Scott Farabaugh.

Greetings BGF CSA Members,

We made it to the half-way mark of the season! And we're still growing in members and produce!
We will have a short break from lettuce after this week. You'll receive head lettuce this week, but it may be three weeks or so before getting salad mix. We had done a third later planting of lettuce hence the gap of time - but I'm sure you'll appreciate the break!

We hope you're enjoying the corn - this year's crop has a better taste than last year's. Some say the cob seems tougher, which sometimes it can be. If it's too much trouble to eat on the cob simply slice the kernels off and smother it with butter!

This is a busy time of the summer for vacations. Many of you are good about giving us advanced notice (2 weeks), but some of you are not. Please be mindful that we keep close count of boxes and quantity of what goes in them. Also, when you request a week off due to vacation, you are due a double up box at a later date. So when emailing us to tell us about your vacation date, let us know your double up date as well. Thanks!


What you may expect to find in your box this week:
head lettuce
green peppers
hot peppers (...and they are hot!)
cherry or grape tomatoes
slicing tomatoes
cucumber
zucchini
sweet corn
eggplant
cantaloupe


Culinary Corner

  • always wash your produce! 
  • If you enjoy salsa, this is a good week to make it since you have tomatoes and peppers. You can even add corn for a fuller taste. Try this on top of a burger...YUM!
  • Another tomato option...saute tomatoes with onion and eggplant with olive oil and garlic. Serve over cooked pasta.
  • We gave you a recipe for Zucchini Quiche in the Week 6 Newsletter. What our sister-in-law tried was to not use meat, and add 2 cups of corn and a sliced green tomato. She added the corn (cooked and off the cob) to the batter mix. Then she poured half the batter into a baking dish, added the sliced tomatoes as a second layer, and poured the rest of the batter over top as a third layer. (This is a nice variation for our vegetarian members.)

...in the Kitchen

Garden Relish
3 ears of corn; husked, cooked, kernels off cob
2 tomatoes, diced
1 onion, diced
cucumber, peeled, seeded, diced
1 green pepper, seeded, diced
1/2 C balsamic vinegar
1-2 T sugar
1 T dill, parsley, basil, cilantro, or other favorite herb
salt & pepper to taste

Dissolve sugar in vinegar in a quick boil. Remove from heat and cool. Mix all other ingredients. When vinegar mixture is cool add to veggies and stir. Refrigerate. This recipe is best if made day before serving. Will keep in refrigerator up to 1 week.


Keep cool!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com

Posted 8/4/2010 6:09am by Scott Farabaugh.

Greetings BGF CSA Members,

The dogs days of summer are upon us. It is already August and kids and parents alike are getting antsy for the start of school - for different reasons of course!  August is also a busy month for vacations and we appreciate your cooperation with giving advanced notice for missed weeks.

The crops are still growing strong. This is a transitional month as summer crops begin to disappear and autumnal crops begin to appear. We've planted the last of the broccoli. Next week, we will plant the last of the lettuce. Garlic is now being dried - you may receive a sampling at some point. The new potatoes look beautiful, and you'll see them come mid-month. Squash will arrive late-August; however, the spaghetti squash might be in sooner.

We hope you are enjoying the benefits of God's blessings this season with all of the delicious veggies.


What you may expect to find in your box this week:
head lettuce
sweet corn
zucchini
cucumber
red cabbage
onion
green tomatoes
red tomatoes
...and a surprise item


Culinary Corner

  • Always wash your produce! 
  • Fried Green Tomatoes - an easy dish to prepare and bake! We have a recipe on our website. Go to www.bluegoosefarmnicktown.com; under "More" you'll see the listing for Recipes. You can use a milk bath and dredge the tomatoes in white flour, wheat flour, or cornmeal for a variety of flavors.
  • The secret to preparing sweet corn is to keep it sweet. Most people tend to put salt in the water when boiling it. Salt tends to toughen corn. Try sugar instead. YUM!

In the Kitchen...

Cabbage Crunch Salad

Toss together these 6 items:
4 T. sesame seed, toasted
1 c. slivered almonds, toasted
1 small head green cabbage, chopped
1 small head red cabbage, chopped 
1 medium onion, chopped
2 packages oriental noodles (chicken flavor), broken into pieces

Pour dressing over salad just before serving:
4 T. sugar
3/4 c. vegetable oil
1/4 c. sesame oil
6 T. red wine vinegar
1 t. salt
2 packets chicken flavoring (from noodles)
1 t. ginger

Enjoy the season!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com

 

Posted 7/28/2010 1:13pm by Scott Farabaugh.

Greeting BGF CSA Members,

The power of media! Thanks to the article in last week's Tribune Democrat (Monday, July 19th) we received quite a number of inquiries about our farm and the CSA. We were initially overwhelmed but pleased with this response. In case you hadn't seen the article, here's the link http://tribune-democrat.com/local/x1601577606/Veggie-variety-Farm-delivers-produce-directly-to-customers. And none of this would be possible without our members. Thank you for believing in the program and continuing to support our philosophy and efforts. And thank you to those who work behind-the-scenes at the farm and the pickup locations. Much effort goes into planning and operating this business...guess that is the true definition for COMMUNITY Supported Agriculture!

What a difference a year makes! Last year at this time, we were heart-broken because many of our staple crops like cucumbers, peppers, and tomatoes weren't doing well (or were non-existent). This year, we seem to have more than our fill. The crops look great! God certainly likes to keep us humble and to always be mindful for what we have when we have it.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
head lettuce
cucumbers
zucchini
tomatoes
corn
green peppers
cabbage
sugar peas
...and a surprise item

***We received a few inquiries about the surpise item. Some weeks we don't have enough of a particular item to go around to all 200+ members, so we give some of one thing to a few pick-up sites and some of another item to the other sites. For instance, this week we have lower quantities of beans, broccoli, and eggplant. We just split the difference among all the stops. We note which sites get what so that when this happens again, we don't repeat giving the same sites the same surprise item each time.

Culinary Corner

  • Always wash your produce! 
  • The zucchini is a great, healthy ingredient, and an easy one to include in recipes - casseroles, cakes, cookies. Take a moment to search the web for fun ideas.

In the Kitchen...

Tomato-chini Pie
Crust - 2 C Bisquick
          1/2 C milk
Filling - 2-3 medium tomatoes, peeled, sliced, and lightly salted
          2 medium zucchinis, sliced
          1 onion, thinly sliced rings
          2 C grated cheddar cheese
          1-1/2 C mayo (Kraft's mayo in olive oil - delish!)
          chives or scallions, chopped
          basil (if fresh about 6 leaves, if dried 1 t)
          salt & pepper to taste
          Hot sauce to taste (optional)

Mix Bisquick and milk until sticky dough. Press into greased pie pan. Layer zucchini, onion, and tomato slices over dough. Mix cheese, mayo, and hot sauce and gently spread over veggies. Sprinkle chives, basil, and salt and pepper on top. Bake in 400 degree oven for 30 minutes. (Keep close watch as pie can burn during last few minutes.) Let pie sit for 20 minutes before cutting.
NOTE - the recipe tastes best with summer tomatoes, not winter tomatoes, due to the full flavor of summer ones.

Have a great week!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com

 

Posted 7/21/2010 7:45am by Scott Farabaugh.

Greetings BGF CSA Members,

Wow!  What a huge difference this summer's weather has made compared to last season.  We seem to be harvesting crops 1-2 weeks ahead of schedule.  We've already had green peppers, some tomatoes and sweet corn!
 
As the "pea season" is coming to an end, they will be replaced with sweet corn and tomatoes in the coming weeks.  Our shell peas have ripened rather quickly over the weekend, giving them a "starchier" taste.  You may find that they will taste better cooked rather than raw.  We hope you have also enjoyed the sugar peas...they are one of our favorites and are hard to find in our grocery stores.

Just a reminder that our sweet corn is one of 2 non-organic products that we provide (potatoes being the second).  We are not currently equipped to offer either of these products organically.  Please know that we spray the least amount possible.  Along those lines, we apologize ahead of time in case you find a worm in one of your ears.  They always pick the best ears!  We simply cut out the "bad part", then cook and eat as usual.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
lettuce
cucumbers 
sugar peas (we eat with the pod)
shell peas (we eat without the pods)
zucchini
sweet corn
broccoli
red onion
...and a surprise item

Culinary Corner

  • Always wash your produce!
  • A simple way to prepare cucumbers is to slice and toss with italian dressing.  Our kids love them!  Another simple recipe is to prepare a Hidden Valley Ranch packet as directed (with mayo and milk), and pour over  sliced cucumbers.  You can also add sliced onions if desired.
  • Our favorite way to prepare sweet corn is to bake it in the oven (on those not so hot days).  We simply remove the outermost leaves and trim the silk with scissors.  Place on a baking sheet (with the remaining husk still on) and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Then remove the husk carefully (it will be hot) and enjoy! 

In the Kitchen

Broccoli Salad
1 head broccoli, cut into flowerets
1 red onion, diced
8 oz. cheddar cheese, chunked or shredded
3-4 slices bacon (cooked and crumbled) or use 3/4 jar Bacon Bits

Dressing:
1 cup mayo
1 tbsp. vinegar
2 tbsp. sugar
salt & pepper to taste

Prepare first 4 items and toss in bowl with the dressing.  Chill for several hours before serving.

Have a great week!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com