BLUE GOOSE FARM ~ Nicktown, PA

FROM OUR HANDS TO YOUR TABLE

Welcome to the blog.
Posted 6/16/2010 8:28am by Scott Farabaugh.

Greetings BGF CSA Members,

School is out and our older children are busy helping around the farm. It is a sight to look out across the crop fields and see the variance of green color with specks of children! We are blessed.

You will be getting spinach again this week. Enjoy it as this is the end of the first planting. We did a second planting, but we're not sure if it will prosper. Keep your fingers crossed.

Also, we've heard that late blight has hit the area. A farmer in Nicktown and one in Sommerset have crops that have suffered this terrible disease. To those of you members who are veggie gardeners, please watch out for it. If you happen to see it on your plants, especially tomatoes, pull the affected plants so as not to contaminate additional plants. After pulling affected ones, you can plants new ones in their place. You may want to even spray them with copper fingucide - organic ones are available but not easily found. Pray for a week of hot, dry weather for the sun is the only sure cure to kill blight.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
strawberries
green onions
spinach
salad mix
head lettuce
garlic scapes
broccoli


Culinary Corner

  • always wash your produce!  Though we grow organic crops, neighboring farms may not. Besides, you always want to rid the dirt from your produce.
  • remember last week we explained that the part of the crop we provide is always edible. Some people want to trim their produce too much. Like the green portion of the green onion IS edible, so, too, is the green portion of a garlic plant called garlic scapes. It is important to clip the scapes so the nutients of the plant are channeled to growing a bigger bulb rather than a bigger plant. the scapes have a mild garlic flavor and can be used much like the tops of scallions (green onions). They are nice to use as a garnish.

Recipes

Broccoli Soup

1 T butter
1/4 cup chopped onion
3 cups chicken broth
6 oz. Kluski noodles
pepper to taste
12 oz. fresh chopped broccoli
1 garlic scape or 1/2 crushed garlic clove 
3 cups milk
6 oz. velveeta cheese

In large saucepan, heat oleo and saute onions. 
Add broth and bring to boil.
Gradually add noodles so that broth continues to boil.
Cook uncovered 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Stir in broccoli and garlic and cook 4 minutes.
Add milk, cheese and pepper.
Do not boil.
Continue cooking until cheese melts, stirring constantly.
Yields 4 servings.  


Have a great week!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com

Posted 6/9/2010 5:45am by Scott Farabaugh.

Greetings BGF CSA Members,

Again, we would like to thank you for joining our CSA for the 2010 season. It is our hope that you, your family, and friends will enjoy the produce we have to offer.

The Farmer's Almanac has always proven that a hard winter results in a hot summer. This is good news for a farmer as the sun provides the photosynthesis to nourish the plants. However, it also provides too many weeds and sometimes not enough rain, which can be bad news for a farmer. God certainly knows how to challenge us.

The crops are looking good thus far this season. They may be small at the start, but they will soon be growing into nice size items. The first box is always the challenge to fill. It is usually the smallest box in quantity, but we know the quality is still good. Over the next few weeks, we will make up for that quantity as the crops continue to grow.

What you may expect to find in your box this week:
head lettuce or salad mix
spinach
broccoli or broccoli leaves
leeks
potatoes
basil
strawberries

Culinary Corner

  • Always wash your produce!  Though we grow organic crops, we do ask that you wash your items before eating. We do prewash some items, but you should also wash as you always want to rid the dirt from your produce.
  • The quantity of potatoes is larger this week; we usually provide 2 lbs at a time. This 5 lb quantity is offered because we are depleting what is left of our winter stock to make room for the new crop. Make good use of it - make potato salad, mashed potatoes, soup, or add them to a stew. Potatoes are a daily item in the Farabaugh family!
  • The basil is not enough to make pesto, but enough to use as a garnish – great sprinkled on mashed potatoes.
  • Some people want to trim their produce too much. So, the green portion of the leeks IS edible, not just the white portion - they are in the same family as chives and scallions. And we just learned (read story below) that the leaves of the broccoli may be eaten - chopped raw with lettuce in a salad or steamed like spinach – it still tastes like broccoli.

We found this story at the website for One Straw Farm:

The owners Joan and Drew were having company. They wanted to serve broccoli for their guests Paul and Sandy, but when they went to cut it the plants were all too small. Paul began to cut the leaves from the plants and Drew scolded, “What are you doing?” Paul (also an organic farmer) explained this was a year when the crops weren’t doing well and they gave broccoli and cauliflower leaves to their members. Well, they served the broccoli leaves for dinner – chopping and sautéing them with garlic. Their 17 year old son, and his friends, enjoyed the dish…even going back for more! The boys thought the leaves tasted better than the “trees.” This was no small lesson. We now sell the leaves to restaurants and our CSA members. Seems everyone loves the leaves more than the trees!

Recipes

Strawberry Spinach Salad

4 C fresh spinach, washed, dried, and de-stemmed

2 C sliced strawberries

1 C chopped walnuts

Place a serving of spinach on a plate, then top with strawberries and walnuts. Flavor with either a raspberry vinaigrette or poppy seed dressing. Both compliment the salad.  (Our favorite is Ken's raspberry walnut vinaigrette which was recommended to us by a CSA member.)

* You may also add 1 C cucumbers, peeled and quartered; and/or cantaloupe, cubed.


Potato Leek Soup

2 T olive oil

4 leeks, cut into round slices – use white and most of green

4 potatoes, peeled and cubed (about 4 C)

5 C water or 2-1/2 C water and 2-1/2 C chicken broth

1 –8 oz. pkg cream cheese, cubed

½ C milk

basil

 

In large pot, heat oil and add leeks cooking for 5 minutes. Add potatoes, water or broth. Salt and pepper to taste. Cover, bring to boil, then simmer on medium-low for 20 minutes until potatoes are tender. Cool for 10 minutes. In batches, add leek mixture to blender; blend until pureed. Return to pot and whisk in cream cheese, stirring constantly until melted. Add milk and stir. Serve in bowls and garnish with chopped basil.

*Keep it healthy by using low fat diary products.

Just a note: We served the soup to our kids on Tuesday night and they loved it! They called it "mashed potato soup". Although the basil adds a nice flavor, the kids found that sprinkling with cheddar cheese is also a delicious option.  As for clean-up of the blender (usually not my favorite job!), it was so easy to fill halfway with warm water, add a few drops of dishwashing liquid, make sure the lid is on tight and blend away the mess!

We have recipes available at our website www.bluegoosefarmnicktown.com under "More." Though our family and staff provide recipes, we welcome you to also contribute recipes that include the crops we provide. If you email them to us, we are happy to post them on the website for all to share. We appreciate what you do for us.

Enjoy the season!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com

Posted 6/5/2010 9:09am by Scott Farabaugh.

Greetings BGF CSA Members,

Again, we would like to thank you for joining our CSA for the 2010 season. It is our hope that you, your family, and friends will enjoy the produce we have to offer. Enjoy!

This letter provides reminders and rules on how we would like our members to assist us throughout the season – there are almost 200 of you but only 1 farmer. We need all the help we can get. Please be sure to carefully read through this letter as it provides information on pick-ups and vacation policies. You may even wish to print it and put it in a place for easy reference.

We will begin share pick-ups this week! On Wednesday, June 9th for Carrolltown, Ebensburg, Loretto, and Nicktown; on Thursday, June 10th for PHCC, Cope residence, Riek’s Country Store, & Boderocco residence; and on Friday, June 11th for downtown Johnstown. You are to pick up your box from your assigned location on your assigned day (see “Pick-up Site Instructions” below).

Each week our members will receive an email containing our newsletter. This weekly feature includes a list of items to expect in your box that week, a recipe highlighting a particular item in that box, news/updates about the farm, and any reminders along the way. Please be sure to visit our website at www.bluegoosefarmnicktown.com. Each email that we send will be posted under “What’s New” of the homepage so you may view and review this information at anytime. Also, all of our recipes to date are posted under “More” for your convenience.

PICK-UP SITE INSTRUCTIONS

The pick-up process will be the same as last year - go to your designated location each week between the specified times. Your box will be sitting in a specified location at your pickup site (see below). Note: the boxes are NOT personalized. All boxes are the same in share size and content. Should you find a product in your box you are unfamiliar with, we encourage you to try it! We try to educate our members about certain products providing suggestions on its preparation and/or storage. If you personally dislike an item, we suggest sharing it with a friend.

At each site, there will be a clipboard holding a sheet of paper listing each member at that site. We ask that you pick up one box and check off your name from the clipboard list. This will help us identify who missed pick-up that week.

As a thank you for your membership, we will provide each member with his/her own reusable tote. This tote is to be used to carry your products each week. Remember to bring it with you each week! Please DO NOT take boxes- this is our way to help curb cost and to be mindful of our earth.

PICK-UP SITE LOCATIONS

IMPORTANT: Please be mindful of the sites that are residences or businesses. Our members have volunteered their property to be used as drop locations. We ask that you respect their property and the specified times for picking up your box. The pick-up day for your location in that day ONLY. Boxes not picked up by the close of day will be donated. You will NOT get another. We had some problems last year with folks not picking up until Saturday and sometimes on Sunday. This is an inconvenience to the family or business that resides at the drop site.

Also, the contacts for these drop locations have shared their phone numbers with you. Call if you need directions. And please call if you are running late and unable to pick up your box by the close time to let the resident know when you can be there. Thank you.

Wednesday Pick-ups

Carrolltown - Michelle's Herbs, 130 Holly Street, 2:00-6:00 p.m., boxes found under porch or inside
                   house. (814-344-8880)

Ebensburg - Lakeside Church of the Nazerene, next to Lake Rowena, 2:00-6:00 p.m., boxes found
                  inside the rear entrance foyer.

Loretto - St. Francis University, Torvian Hall, 2:00-6:00 p.m., boxes found on back loading docks.

Nicktown - Blue Goose Farm, 2965 Blue Goose Road, 2:00-6:00 p.m., boxes found in white
               refrigerator just inside the Blue Building. (814-948-7188)

Thursday Pick-ups

Richland - Cope Residence, 160 Macridge Avenue, 2:00-6:00 p.m., boxes found on back porch. 
               (814-269-3324)

PHCC- Richland Campus, 101 Community College Way, boxes found in main entrance. 
             NOTE: PHCC’s time vary - from June to September pick-up times are between
          2:00-5:30p.m. Once fall classes begin, times change to 2:00-6:00 p.m. Please make
          note of this!

Westmont - Boderocco Residence, 201 Furnari Avenue, 2:00-6:00 p.m., boxes found on 
                 covered porch.  (814-255-5264)

Riek’s Country Store – 213 Habicht Street, 2:00-6:00 p.m., boxes found inside store. 
                                (814-539-6280)

Friday Pick-ups

Johnstown - Downtown Farmers Market, Central Park along Franklin Street, 9:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. 
                      NOTE: After hours pick-up – Pam J. Mayer, ESQ. Law Office, 243 Adams Street,
                2:30-5:00 p.m., boxes found inside building. (814-536-1144)


VACATION INSTRUCTIONS

If you will be taking vacation, we ask that you notify us TWO weeks prior to your absence. You may simply email or call us. We will make arrangements with you as to when you may make up for that lost week. We handle such absences by allowing you to double up on products at another date. You may wish to specify which date you'd like to double up - say, if you know you'll be doing some entertaining on a particular weekend and would like more goods for your guests; or if you would like to wait until the end of the season and double up on items that will last through the fall and winter. We are flexible, but we ask for your cooperation in advance.

Should you have any additional questions, please contact us. We thank you for your cooperation and look forward to a bountiful season with you!

Enjoy the season!

Scott & Chrissy Farabaugh

814-948-7188

sctfab@yahoo.com